From the beginning of time, man has tried to store up, search out, and increase wealth. Many don’t get beyond the material possessions of this present age and believe in accumulating as much here to enjoy as possible. On the extreme opposite end, some cultures believe they can take their possessions on with them in the after life!
As Christians, we know what the Bible teaches, “For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.” (1 Timothy 6:7 NKJV) What then are the treasures in heaven? And, how do we build them up?
Treasures in Heaven in the Bible
Jesus’ teachings about storing up treasures in heaven are found in Matthew 6:19-21 and Luke 12. He also mentions the same concept in Matthew 13 and again, in his conversation with the rich young ruler (Matthew 19, Mark 10, & Luke 18). While we will refer back to these other texts, for the purpose of this post, we will focus on Matthew 6:19-21 NKJV:
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
Examples of Treasures in Heaven
The most obvious we learn from this scripture is that treasures in heaven are not like treasures on earth. They can’t be destroyed or taken away. So, heavenly treasures are safe and secured forever.
The Presence of Jesus
The first treasure we gain in heaven is the best, the Presence of Jesus! We get to be with the Light, the Way, the Truth, The King, forever!!
Revelation 22:3-5 NKJV says: “And there shall be no more curse, but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His servants shall serve Him. They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads. There shall be no night there: They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light. And they shall reign forever and ever.”
A Place to Live for Eternity
Another important treasure that we have in heaven is a place to dwell for eternity. Jesus told his disciples, “In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:2-3 NKJV)
Absence of Sin
Revelation 21:27 says, “But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.” Anything unclean is not allowed in the hallowed presence of our Lord so sin will be no more.
This is such good news for us because the injustices, evil, and persecutions of this current world will no longer exist. And, we will not have to deal with our own personal sin struggles any longer. It will be a glorious rest for our souls as we see creation restored.
Also, we will have creation restored. The Bible speaks of no more pain, mourning or death. It talks of the newness of creation and the glorious bodies we will receive.
Paul describes our place in heaven as follows: “But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.” Philippians 3:20-21 NKJV
In Revelation 21:1-4 NKJV, John tells us: “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
God doesn’t just talk about treasure metaphorically, there is real priceless treasure in heaven. We are told that the elders have crowns to lay at the feet of Jesus, that we get to walk streets of gold, and the construction materials are all forms of precious metals and jewels. The greatest thing is that we won’t posses them or have the desire to accumulate them because the greatest treasure will be heaven its self!
How to Store Up Treasures in Heaven
Jesus said, “For where your treasure is there your heart will be also.” It’s so important that we focus on what is eternal and not what is temporal. In order to store up treasure in heaven, first, we must rearrange our thinking. Matthew 6:33 NIV encourages us, ” But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” We are to focus on God’s kingdom not our own fading world.
I love the lines in this worship song we sang in church last Sunday. In God’s kingdom, the treasures and the way that we earn them are opposite of the world. He calls us to serve humbly in order to earn treasures in heaven.
Your Kingdom is backwardsFrom Simple Kingdom by Bryan and Katie Torwalt & Cody Carnes
It flows in reverse
What You call a treasure
This world calls a curse
The small become great and
The last become first
Your Kingdom is backwards
Lord teach us to serve
Second, it would seem that obedience and good deeds earns believers treasures in heaven. God honors humble service to others in the name of Christ. Jesus told the rich young ruler to go sell all that he had and give to the poor in order to earn treasures in heaven. Many of God’s laws in the Old Testament and Jesus’ teachings in the New Testament, both spoke of caring for the needy.
Another thing we see from the passage in Matthew 6, in both the story of the rich young ruler and in the story of the widow and her mite (Mark 12:41-44) is that sacrificial giving shows that we trust the promise of treasure in heaven and do not put our faith in worldly riches.
Finally, sharing the gospel is the most important way we store up treasures in heaven. The only thing we get to bring with us to heaven is other people. We have a duty to share the good news with others in hopes that they will give their lives to Christ and receive the gift of eternal life.
What the Bible Says About Treasures on Earth
I think sometimes studying the opposite side of things helps us to understand the value of what we are seeking. In the case of treasure in heaven, let’s look at what the Bible has to say about treasures on Earth and those who store up treasures on earth.
- Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. And he thought within himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?’ So he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.” ’ But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?’ “So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.” Luke 12:16-21 NKJV
- For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. 1 Timothy 6:10 NKJV
- And when Simon saw that through the laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Spirit was given, he offered them money, saying, “Give me this power also, that anyone on whom I lay hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” But Peter said to him, “Your money perish with you, because you thought that the gift of God could be purchased with money! Acts 8:18-20 NKJV