“Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.” Matt 6:19-21
What is the treasure?
We were discussing Heaven last week at our home Bible study. Although the discussion was focusing on what prophecy says of the timeline of events that will occur (and very soon), we could not help but notice all the imagery.
My thoughts went to the verse above and I wondered what that treasure actually is. Although I cannot say what all the treasures in Heaven will be, I do read of the precious gems and gold that are used to describe heavenly things.
The holy city
In Rev. 21 we read a description of the holy city Jerusalem descending out of heaven from God and the description includes the following treasures: pure gold, jasper, sapphire, agate, emerald, onyx, carnelian, chrysolite, beryl, topaz, chrysoprase, jacinth, amethyst, and pearl.
First, the gates to the city were made with pearls. Pearls are created when a piece of sand irritates the oyster and the oyster creates a coating on that grain of sand and the build up of the coating creates a pearl.
I have heard others suggest that the entrance to the holy city is not without suffering and we can see that Christ was the one who suffered to allow our entrance.
Gold, in order for it to be pure, needs the impurities removed. This process involves heat and a stream of chlorine gas over and through melted gold. The impurities form chlorine salts that then can be removed.
The thing about gold is that it does not oxidize or react to chemicals, so it does not corrode and it can withstand the chemical process of removing impurities. The other thing about gold is that it is soft so it is highly malleable. It can be molded and shaped, but it is strong when it cools.
The process of removing impurities in our lives involves the heat of trials, but we can withstand the heat and what we are left with is a pure and precious spirit that is able to be shaped and molded into what God wants us to be and ends up being strong too!
Then I did a little research to find out a bit more about those gems. Except for the pearl and gold, the others are all gemstones. Now to the best of my knowledge in my research, gemstones are formed when molten magma rock comes to the surface and cools but minerals from the region mix in with it through sediment and creates a chemical reaction.
Then when pressure is also added as the sediment builds up on top of it, a gemstone is formed. An interesting thing about gemstones is that the pressure makes those rare and valuable gemstones unbreakable.
Gemstones require refining
Gemstones are often fairly ordinary looking in their original state, but it is when they are cut and polished that they shine and sparkle so brilliantly.
The process of the formation of precious gems involve pressure and the beauty and brilliance comes through cutting and polishing. In our lives how often do we feel pressure and the pain like a deep cut when difficult circumstances arise?
It is that very pain and pressure that will make us unbreakable. What about polishing? Are we dull, do we need to be consistently rubbed with pressure to change that dullness to a sparkling shine? To glow rather than blend in?
What treasure are you storing up?
In light of these elements of precious treasure, how do we pray? Are we praying to remove the deep cuts, the buffing cloth, the heat of the fire or the pressure of weights and burdens?
Or are we laying up our treasures in Heaven and praying for the strength, the malleable willingness to be molded, the foundation to stand strong in our faith unmovable and unbreakable, and the brilliant shine to shed light where there is none?
Where is your treasure? Is it corruptible or is it eternal?