Genesis 49-50 Matthew 13:31-58
“The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in a field. One day a man found the treasure, and then he hid it in the field again. He was so happy that he went and sold everything he owned to buy that field.” (Matthew 13:44 NCV)
Throughout her history, the land occupied by the nation of Israel has been a battleground. Empires conquering the world would go through Israel. The Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, and Romans, among others, overran Israel as they pursued their goals for conquest. One way that the Israelites sought to preserve their wealth was to bury things they treasured in the ground. If the owner was killed, or if the time away from home was too long, no one would be able to claim their treasure and the new owner might not realize that a treasure was there. This was the backdrop for Jesus’ parable related to the kingdom of Heaven. A man walking through various fields notices something different in his neighbor’s field. He investigates and realizes that someone has buried a treasure there. When he looks at the treasure, he wants it, but, he doesn’t want to steal from his neighbor, so he sells everything he has to raise the money to buy the field.
The meaning of this parable isn’t too hard to understand. The kingdom of Heaven is a treasure that’s worth far more than any and everything we have, we do, or we think. None of those things that we hold dear in this life are worth keeping, if it keeps us from entering the kingdom of Heaven. Is there something keeping you from following Jesus? What would that be? If you’ve ever said, “I’d follow Jesus except for…” then that’s what’s keeping you from the kingdom of Heaven. The man in the parable was happy to sell those things so that might have kept him from buying the field. Look at your life and have an estate sale (figuratively, of course) if necessary so that you can be fit for the kingdom of God.
Lord, nothing I have or want is worth more than my relationship with You. Let me be willing to give up anything and everything so that I can be fit for the kingdom of heaven.
Scripture taken from the New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.