Matthew 13:44: “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.”
Jesus was talking about the tremendous value of gaining the kingdom of heaven. The man in the parable is willing to give up everything he already has because the treasure is so much more valuable.
If you were to present a bag full of quarters and a $100 bill to a 4 year old, and ask him to choose one, which one would he take? Probably the bag of quarters. Why? Because he knows the value of a quarter. He sees a bag full of quarters and imagines how many candies he can buy from the candy machine. But he has not yet learned the value of a $100 bill.
Our trouble is that we know not the value and the worth of the kingdom of God. As C.S. Lewis stated in his famous sermon, The Weight of Glory, we are “like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
The call of Christ is to be that man who discovers something of tremendous value, something worth more than everything we have combined; to consider him to be that great treasure, and to prove his worth by living in the same way as one who is receiving a great inheritance that will make everything we currently own seem worthless.
Now, don’t think we will gain the kingdom when we give up everything else. Rather, we gain the kingdom when we want it more than anything else. We gain the kingdom when we see the eternal fellowship with God as a great treasure more valuable than anything else we could ever possess.
The child who considers the quarters to be more valuable makes his choice between the two. He can’t have both. We need to want the kingdom of God more than even the greatest possession here on earth. God has made it available to us. But, we can’t have the kingdom of God if it takes second place to anything else.
My next post will address the issue we have with not wanting God’s kingdom; we lack the desire and therefore get distracted by worldly pleasures or troubles.