Everlasting Treasure

Drawing of a squirrel eating acorns

Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth,’ Matthew Ch 6 v 19

Busy Squirrels

While on a short holiday during the winter, I spent some time watching three squirrels that had set up their residence in the garden of the house where I was staying. Every morning they could be seen busily taking nuts from a basket which the owner of the house had hung on a nearby tree.

I was impressed by their energy and agility as I watched them leaping from tree to tree as they raced up, down and around their tree top habitat. All morning they could be seen collecting nuts.

It seemed to me, as I watched the nuts diminishing inside the baskets, that the squirrels were being greatly rewarded by their efforts to collect food.

I wonder what all our efforts in life will earn us when God ‘will reward each person according to what they have done.’ Matthew 16 v 27.

Determined Gatherers

As I daily watched the squirrels it became evident that each one was determined to gather as many nuts as it could and also, it appeared, to make sure nobody else did.

Whenever a bird approached the feeding station it would be chased away. And if another squirrel tried to sneak in while one was already feeding it would be chased round and round the tree trunk and up into the topmost branches until it fled from the scene.

Are you and I as determined in our quest to lay up ‘treasures in heaven,’ Matthew 6 v 20, as the squirrels were to lay up supplies of food?

Do we do our utmost to chase away anything that is coming between us and our hopes of joining those who ‘Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst.’ Revelation 7 v 16?

Disappointing News

One morning while speaking to the house owner about the squirrels he gave me some disappointing news.

Apparently the squirrels were burying the nuts they harvested all over the garden and sadly they did not seem to remember where they had buried them. In addition, when spring came most of the nuts were lost when the garden was dug up and seeds sown and plants planted.

It was quite sad really that despite all their determined efforts the treasure they thought they had stored away would soon be lost forever.

Friends, it is sad too that many in this world are storing up treasures upon this earth that will soon be lost forever, for our lives are but ‘a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.’ James 4 v 14.

Jesus tells us to lay up ‘treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.’ Matthew 6 v 20.

Will our possessions, personal treasures, achievements and beliefs be of any use in the world to come?

Insights into Heaven

The Saviour, who God decreed ‘would suffer and, as the first to rise from the dead,’ Acts 26 v 23 had a clear view of heaven for He ‘came from heaven,’ John 3 v 13, and returned there. The insight He had of joy in heaven is revealed to us in the Bible for it tells us that He ‘For the joy that was set before him endured the cross,’ Hebrews 12 v 2.

He was not the only one who had an insight into heaven for the martyr Stephen when close to death ‘‘Look,’ he said, ‘I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.’ Acts 7 v 56. We are told that those who persecuted him ‘saw that his face was like the face of an angel,’ Acts 6 v 15. He passed into glory saying ‘Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.’ Acts 7 v 59.

Clearly Stephen knew that he had treasure in heaven that would never perish. Is there an ‘inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God,’ Ephesians 5 v 5, awaiting you and me? Is that where our treasure is?

Treasure in Heaven

The busy, energetic and determined squirrels had found and stored up a treasure, which although in its self perfect for them, was going to prove worthless.

Stephen had found a treasure which was priceless and sustained him during his time of trial and beyond the grave.

What do our treasures of life consist of? Will they, like those of the squirrels, prove to be worthless? Or will they, like that of Stephen, prove to be ‘an inheritance, that can never perish, spoil or fade.’ 1 Peter 1 v 4?

May we be assured of eternal life, and treasure in heaven, by truly believing in Jesus Christ alone for our salvation and deliverance from sin.

Dave Joy

Knowing God

Little birdy singing

‘I know whom I have believed,’ 2 Timothy Ch.1 v 12

Knowing God

I often wonder how well I actually know God.

When I read my Bible I see accounts of men like Abraham, Jacob, Elijah, Paul and others who knew God in a personal way. These men had a glorious and continuing experience with the Almighty God that sustained, strengthened and refreshed them. This conscious awareness of God, that was the hallmark of their lives and exploits, brought them intimately close Him. They knew that ‘their Redeemer liveth,’ Job 19 v 25.

Can we say that our knowledge of and faith in Jesus Christ, can be compared to that of the saints of old?

Tapping Noises

I was reminded of this one spring morning when I was disturbed by loud tapping noises coming from outside my office at the foot of my garden.

I eventually traced the source of the sounds to a bird box that had been fixed to the rear wall of the office a few years ago and some discreet observation revealed that two blue tits were starting to build a nest there. I wondered if they were the same birds that had nested there for a couple of years now.

Intimate Knowledge

Assuming that it was, these birds had obviously returned to a nesting place that was intimately known to them. Their experimental knowledge of the nest box must have been strengthened by the fact that it was a tried and tested place of refuge to them.

The little box had withstood gales blowing in from the nearby sea which from time to time tore branches from nearby trees.

It had even stood firm when a great storm had recently caused devastating damage along the sea shore and demolished part of the harbour wall.

I wonder if our experimental knowledge of Jesus is such that we can say that the reality of His existence has provided us with a tried and tested place of refuge where we can find rest from the burdens of everyday life, strength for each day and hope for the future?

Is our knowledge of God akin to that of the Old Testament Saints such as Abraham?

Faithful Abraham

Abraham could not turn to a minister for help. He had no scriptures. And yet he knew God in a way few of us will ever do.

God’s dealings with him were such that, despite whatever plans he might have had, Abraham was led to commit his life and future into His hands, having been told by Him ‘ I am the Almighty God, walk before me, and be thou perfect,’ Genesis 17 v 1.

God has a plan for every believer in Jesus. Do we realise and truly believe that if we have Jesus Christ we need nothing more?

Totally Committed

As I think about the blue tits busy preparing their nest and the hope they had for the future of successfully raising young once more, I am reminded that the bird box had never let them down no matter what came their way. I think it would be safe to say that their knowledge of the box brought them such a sense of security they became totally committed to it.

Can we honestly say that our personal knowledge of Jesus Christ is such that, having committed our lives totally into His hands, we have an inward sense of well being and security?

Can we say with Paul of old that ‘I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him …’ 2 Timothy 1 v 12.

Belief Rewarded

It is some time since the blue tits started building their nest and all being well, they will soon be gone again, hopefully accompanied by another brood of young birds, their belief in, and knowledge of the security of the nest box having been rewarded.

Abraham’s intimate knowledge of and belief in God was rewarded for ‘it was accounted to him for righteousness,’ Galatians 3 v 6.

Dear readers, the Bible tells us that those who come to God ‘must believe that He is,’ Hebrews 11 v 6. Is our knowledge of and belief in Jesus Christ such that we can say we really know Him?

Blessings for Time and Eternity

May we, through prayerfully searching the Scriptures and continual commitment to and dependence on Jesus be led, day by day, to truly know Him; and be able to rejoice in the knowledge that, like faithful Abraham, we will be rewarded with many blessings ‘in this present time and in the world to come, life everlasting’, Luke 18 v 30.