Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Matthew 6:20
Jesus made the preceding statement during one of His teaching sessions. But before He told us to store our treasures in heaven, He told us where not to store them.
Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Matthew 6:19
My wife and I have had some interesting discussions around those two verses in Matthew. When Jesus said we should not store our treasures on earth, what exactly did He mean?
Was He saying we shouldn’t save for a rainy day or make financial preparations to purchase a home? And what about retirement? Do we plan for it or put our total trust in God?
A financial planner might instruct us to invest, save, plan, and save some more. But did Jesus intend for us to plan that way? If not, how is it possible for us to store our treasures in heaven?
Before we go any further and before you jump to any conclusions, I haven’t made any comments yet. I have only asked questions.
I am by no means saying we shouldn’t prepare for the future. In our preparations, God has called each of us to be good stewards of all He has provided for us.
Good stewardship means that we will trust the Lord more than we trust our resources. And we will use our resources, along with our time and talents, to honor God.
The context of our verse for today has nothing to do with saving for a rainy day. Neither does it talk about putting money away for something like a house or retirement.
What it Means to Store Your Treasures in Heaven
Let’s define what Jesus meant when He said to store your treasures in heaven. It certainly includes giving to your local church and to those in need.
To “store your treasures in heaven” goes well beyond giving of our money and possessions. It also includes living for God’s glory and the good of others. One version of verse 19, says;
Don’t keep hoarding for yourselves earthly treasures that can be stolen by thieves. Material wealth eventually rusts, decays, and loses its value. Matthew 6:19 TPT
The phrase “hoarding for yourselves” appropriately defines the context of this verse. Hoarders usually have no other reason for having things except to have them.
I once knew a man named Micky whose house had a path going from room to room. Either side of it consisted of stuff piled to the ceiling. One day, I offered to help him clean up a little.
It didn’t matter what I suggested to take out; he gave me the same response. “Oh no, I can’t get rid of that.” Micky’s story came to an end when his faulty wood stove burned everything up.
Didn’t Jesus say if we store our treasures on earth instead of heaven, we would lose them? What happened with Micky serves as an example of any treasure stored on earth.
In verse 20, Jesus said to store your treasures in heaven. Why? Because in heaven, moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal it.
To Store your Treasures in Heaven has a Deeper Meaning
A deeper and more spiritual reason also lies behind this teaching from Jesus. He indicated that when He expounded on this subject in the next verse.
Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be. Matthew 6:21
Ask yourself this question: what do you treasure the most? What would you say if I asked you to name the most important thing to you?
In this chapter, Jesus made a profound statement directing us to what we should treasure.
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. Matthew 6:33
So, live by faith by living within the means of God’s provision for you. Then we’ll continually store our treasures in heaven, thus making verse 34 your life’s theme verse.
So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today. Matthew 6:34
An Example of Living by Faith
I want to share with you a story about a woman who my wife and I came to love and admire. We called her Mom Woodling. She amazed us and others by how she lived by faith.
Years before we knew this dear sister, her husband deserted her. He left her to raise four young children by herself.
When we met her, her children all had families of their own. Mom Woodling surpassed retirement age and cleaned the church to supplement her Social Security income.
Finally, the day came when she had to give that job up. But like she had done all her life, she continued trusting God.
Knowing she needed the income, one of the church members made a motion in a church business meeting. He suggested that the church continue to pay her salary until she went to heaven.
Mom Woodling lived a life of strong faith. Her journey wasn’t easy, but God rewarded her in many ways. I believe she knew how to store her treasures in heaven and not here on earth.
I’m a better person today because of the examples she exhibited in her life. I stand amazed at how much we can trust the Lord, even when we don’t think we can.
I wrote a devotion called “How Do You Handle Forced Faith?” In it, I tell of an occasion when we had no choice but to trust God. He forced us to have faith, and I’m glad we did.
Lord, thank you for giving us examples of people with solid faith, like Mom Woodling. Bring influencers into our lives who can illustrate to us how to store our treasures in heaven.
Check out these related posts about faith
- How To Supplement Your Faith In God
- How Do You Handle Forced Faith?
- When You See A Miracle, Faith, & Repentance Work Together
- The Mystery Of Our Faith
- Is My Faith Being Tested During A Storm In Life?
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