Stewardship of Your Treasures

Dustin Folden November 17, 2019 Matthew 6:16-24
Outline

4 Key Principles of Stewardship

God owns everything, you own nothing.

God entrusts you with everything you have.

You can either increase or diminish what God has given you—He wants you to increase it.

God can call you into account at any time—it may be today.

4 questions we must ask ourselves concerning the stewardship of our treasures

I. Who Is My Audience

Matthew 6:16-18 - Whenever you fast, do not put on a gloomy face as the hypocrites do, for they neglect their appearance so that they will be noticed by men when they are fasting. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face so that your fasting will not be noticed by men, but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.

Matthew 5:6 - Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

Psalm 139:7-12 - Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend to heaven, You are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the dawn, if I dwell in the remotest part of the sea, even there Your hand will lead me, and Your right hand will lay hold of me. If I say, “Surely the darkness will overwhelm me, and the light around me will be night,” even the darkness is not dark to You, and the night is as bright as the day. Darkness and light are alike to You…

II. Where Is My Storehouse

Matthew 6:19-21 - Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

“Spiritual treasure should be defined as broadly as possible—as everything that believers can take with them beyond the grave—e.g., holiness of character, obedience to all of God’s commandments, souls won for Christ, and disciples nurtured in the faith. In this context, however, storing up treasures focuses particularly on the compassionate use of material resources to meet others’ physical and spiritual needs, in keeping with the priorities of God’s kingdom (vv. 25–34; cf. Luke 16:8–13).” Craig Blomberg, Matthew (vol. 22; The NAC), pg. 123

III. How Is My Eye

Matthew 6:22-23 - The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!

Matthew 9:27-29 - As Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed Him, crying out, “Have mercy on us, Son of David!” When He entered the house, the blind men came up to Him, and Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.” Then He touched their eyes, saying, “It shall be done to you according to your faith.”

John 8:12 - Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”

Matthew 5:14-16 - You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.

IV. Who Is My Master

Matthew 6:24 - No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.

Matthew 11:28-30 - Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.

Psalm 16:11 - You will make known to me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; in Your right hand there are pleasures forever.

As we talk about treasure and what is valuable today…does anyone know what this is…

Picture C-3PO

Some might say it is a C3PO

Let me tell you what this is and how it has helped me see what is truly valuable.

Lego Story (I have permission from my kids to share this with you)

Trunk or Treat Lego table with some of the Bretz family (AJ, Ben & Josh)

Lego trunk or treat Picture

Afterwards they came over for dinner, and after dinner sawyer wanted to show them His room and his Legos.

Josh who is a Lego fanatic says “what’s that” – he picks up C3PO and brings it downstairs and asks me… do you know what this is…..

No do you know what this is….it is a 30th anniversary Chrome Gold limited edition C3PO that was put randomly in sets…there are only 10,000 in the world.

Picture: C-3PO Limited Edition Bag

It is like the golden ticket in willy Wonka

Ok, so…do you how much it is worth….no but you have my attention. $400 is the lowest right now….

So we all thought this was pretty cool, and Josh started doing research to make sure it was real and not a fake….and we Begin trying to figure out what set it was in….start going through sawyers sets….

All of a sudden he starts crying uncontrollably….we eventually go upstairs to talk.

I ask why are you so upset….Well dad, you know when you sin, and you have that really icky feeling inside…I have that.

I said, I am so glad when you sin, you have that response….

I ask why he has that, and he says sometimes I like a Lego, at a friend’s house and I put it in my pocket….and I usually take it out.

Whose house have you put Legos in your pocket.

Mackenzie green….oh great, we have Pastor Green $400 Lego…He goes on to say, he only a Lego Olaf and a guy on a bike in his pocket and took it out.

It ends up that This summer he spend a number of weeks at Grandma and Grandpas house, and we have 3 boys worth of Legos, and he found C3P0, in a bin of our old Legos, and put it in his pocket and brought it back to Indiana, and Josh just happened to pick it out from across the room and recognize its true value.

My son was able to ask forgiveness of His sin with God and my parents, and now my brother gets to decide what to do with C-3PO.

Picture C-3PO

This was a hidden treasure that the Lord brought to light in an amazing way…but the Lord brought something of even more value to light….a greater treasure….truth about Who He is and how to relate to him rightly….

The point is that God will bring to light what is hidden, he will bring to the surface what is valuable to you, and what is truly valuable in His eyes.

You see God is revealing himself as He is the only one of infinite value…

…and it is truly valuable to see your children have a growing vibrant, genuine relationship with God, it is valuable to see those you love have a fear of God, a conviction of sin, and desire to address their sin, have a clear conscience and learn from situations, so that as we grow…

We want to grow in stewardship so that God can be revealed, shown and displayed with the immense worth that He has.

So consider what is valuable as we continue stewardship Month

Today, we are going to be talking about Stewardship of Your Treasures out of Matthew 6

As we continue walking through the Sermon on the Mount

So please turn to Matthew 6:16-24

If you need a bible there is one under the chair in front of you, in the back section turn to page 4

While we are turning there, let’s take a moment to go over the 4 key principles of stewardship together

These are key biblical concepts that we find all throughout Scripture

1. God owns everything, I own nothing

2. God entrusts me with everything I have

3. I can either increase or diminish what God has given me – He wants me to increase it

4. God can call me into account at any time – it may be today

Again, today we are going to be talking about Stewardship of Your Treasures

A “treasure”, loosely defined, is anything that you value

When I say the word “treasures” – what comes to mind?

Everyone has different treasures, things they value…

Maybe it is your family, your health, your reputation, your hobbies, your car/home, your Legos….

So, Lego maniac or star wars groupies or something else, what is it that YOU treasure?

We want to make sure we steward the right treasures and in the right way….

Let’s read our text for today to see what Jesus means when He is talking about how we are to view and steward our treasures

*Read Matt 6:16-24

With the time we have remaining, lets consider 4 questions we must ask ourselves concerning the stewardship of our treasures

Picture your treasures as we move on with our message this morning, and let’s go ahead and get into our first question:

I. Who is My Audience? (vv 16-18)

  • Let’s read 16-18 together again:
  • The text says…
    • Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
      • Your store house, is a way of saying, what you value, what you treasure.
        • God says it is fine to treasure things, but do you treasure the right things…
        • What you store up indicates what you gather and invest in that is important to you.
      • The Lord starts with what not to store up….
        • Earthly treasures, things of earthly value
        • The reason is they can not last and so they do not have ultimate value…they do not have the highest value…God is wanting us to treasure what is truly valuable, and that must be things that last eternally.
      • The text talks about Moth and Rust….natural decay agents
        • You can spend a fortune on a new wardrobe, and be the talk of the town for a few months, and if the style doesn’t change, well, eventually the fabric is going to wear out, and moths can eat away.
        • Similarly, rust can take a car that was once worth hundreds of thousands of dollars and reduce it to nothing more than scrap metal.
        • Those are natural processes that no earthy storehouse can ultimately protect from….
      • Thieves are not agents of decay, but agents of displacement…
        • If the natural processes of this earth don’t depreciate the value of something, than the whole item can be taken from you.
          • Have you ever seen a video of a person walking with a really expensive phone and a thief on a bike rides by and just rips it out of their hands and keep riding…
        • We all tend to accumulate things of value over time, and we usually keep them in our house, or maybe in they are really valuable a bank.
          • Many people have security systems, but most people know, they are meant to deter, and to alert police if a break in happens…if a thief really wants to get it, they can usually do so, and the hope is that they will be caught so they can’t do it again.
          • But the reality of living on earth in a sin cursed world is that people can and do take things you work really hard for….and so if you put your hope, your identity, your treasure in material things to give you status or entertainment, or joy….
          • Those can either be slowly destroyed over time, or taken from you in an instant.
        • So what Jesus is saying, is how can something that can’t last and can be taken get prime place in your heart.
          • It is a bad investment one way or another.
      • Jesus has the best stock tip you will ever get
        • Store up treasure somewhere else….invest your time, energy, resources in heavenly things, that can not fade or be taken because they are preserved and protected by God himself.
      • So you might ask, how do I know if I am storing up treasure for myself on earth or in heaven?
        • Simple answer – can you take it with you? Can it be eaten or rusted, can someone take it.
          • Is stuff bad to have?
            • No – but it really matters what you are using your stuff for!
            • As pastor green said last week, everything you have is either a tool or an idol…a tool to be used for the glory of God or an idol to be used to worship yourself….
              • Everything you have been blessed with should be viewed with an eternal focus…so you are not looking to store it, but use it to store eternal treasures.
                • How can I use this temporary thing that I cannot take with me in order to accrue lasting treasure in heaven?
  • The easy part of this passage is the negative end – don’t store up stuff that you can’t take with you
    • The tricky part is the positive: what then should I do? What is heavenly treasure, and how do I get it?
      • I like what commentator Craig Blomberg says about this in his commentary on the Book of Matthew:
        • Spiritual treasure should be defined as broadly as possible—as everything that believers can take with them beyond the grave—e.g., holiness of character, obedience to all of God’s commandments, souls won for Christ, and disciples nurtured in the faith. In this context, however, storing up treasures focuses particularly on the compassionate use of material resources to meet others’ physical and spiritual needs, in keeping with the priorities of God’s kingdom (vv. 25–34; cf. Luke 16:8–13). – Craig Blomberg, Matthew (vol. 22; The NAC), pg. 123.
          • THIS is what the eternal lens looks like
            • Do we spend our time growing in our character through knowing and applying the word of God, or do we spend an inordinate amount of time and money on our external appearance and clothing….or how we appear to others on Facebook.
          • Think about how this applies to Christmas for everyone, winter break ministries and the Living nativity, your stewardship commitment card, or even participating in the capital campaign.
            • Consider the LN - You can invest your time in December being a part of the Gospel presentation of the redemptive plan of God…you not only can build lasting eternal relationships with other believers as you serve, but you can be a part of God saving someone through trusting in the Gospel presentation that you are a part of.
            • If you have accepted His gift….if you value what He has done for you eternally…are you seeking to show that same value to other people, by living a gospel focused life…by investing your time and resources in areas that have eternal value.
        • Jesus is seeking to help us see that what we value externally, indicates what we value internally, in our hearts…
          • Practically this can play out to how you practice hospitality individually…do you value your carpet and your couch more than you value building relationship with other living souls that you can have an eternal impact on…
          • time showing people the love of Christ is a better investment than carpet.
        • He has invited you to come in, to dwell with Him, by admitting your sins, and accepting His free gift of eternal life in Jesus Christ…He is offering you eternal treasures, eternal life.
    • Where is your storehouse?
  • This is a natural outflow from what He just talked about in verse 21
    • Verses 22-23 go on to say…
      • The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
        • So first we have to ask what does it mean that the eye is the lamp of the body.
          • Well, just as a lamp is a source of light, so your eye is a source of light for your body.
        • If your eye is not clear, if you have a speck in your eye, if you are blinded, you whole body does not know the right direction to go.
          • So the eye being healthy, and working properly is of critical importance for the whole body.
        • Just as we have been focused on earthly audience and heavenly audience, earthly treasures, and heavenly treasures, here we have earthly sight and heavenly sight.
          • Do you see how important the unseen God is.
          • Do you look at life through the eyes of faith…believing that what God says is true, that you can’t necessarily see for yourself in this physical earth.
        • When you see a trial or a difficult circumstance, do you only see it as a physical inconvenience, something that is going to jam you up and ruin your day.
          • Or do you see the Lord at work, molding you and shaping you to become more like Christ…more humble, more patient, more eternally focused, more interested in the souls of the people around you than your earthly difficulty.
          • When you want something, it becomes a log in your eye….you can’t see anything else but what you want.
        • Lets say you want a promotion at work.
          • It would mean more pay, more vacation, higher standing in your extended family as a successful person…you want that promotion bad.
          • All you can see is that promotion.
          • And you start by just working hard, but then you start to exaggerate some of your numbers, or take credit for some things that you didn’t do, and you subtly highlight others failures compared to your successes. You also don’t have as much time for people as you are so focused on your performance…..you start to view others as lesser than you, that you work harder and are more capable than them.
          • Do you see the darkness that overtakes the body when all you can see is what you want….
        • Maybe you want to get a project done at home.
          • It is so important, you spend all your free time planning and thinking about it…and your family is longing for your attention.
            • You look at it in your minds eye….you get consumed so that is all you see as important…
          • You spend money and your spouse is concerned about the impact on the budget, but you want to get this project done.
          • You spend your time working on it, and then one of your kids messes something up, so you yell at them and want to be left alone to work on it…
          • You see that project as most important, that it impacts your whole body…your family, even the body of Christ…
          • You become spiritually blind to what the Lord says is most important, and what the Lord sees. Your eye is bad.
        • Something that is really interesting in the bible is that sometimes the people who are physically blind, see Jesus the best.
          • Because they look at Him through the eyes of Faith, believing what He says about Himself and the world.
            • Jesus just healed a girl at a funeral where the crown laughed at Him when He said she was asleep…then…
            • Matthew 9:27–29 — 27 As Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed Him, crying out, “Have mercy on us, Son of David!” 28 When He entered the house, the blind men came up to Him, and Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.” 29 Then He touched their eyes, saying, “It shall be done to you according to your faith.”
          • Jesus did not look like anything special, and yet He was and is of extreme worth.
            • So we must in our minds eye, look to the Lord with the eyes of Faith, and believe that Who He is of true value and what He says is the path of Life we need.
          • John 8:12 — 12 Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”
          • If you value seeing clearly…you must see with the eyes of faith based on what God says is important, valuable…namely Himself!
        • The eye in the bible is very similar to the heart…it is talking about what we want, what we see as important.
          • The Lord is the source of light, all that is good…and a clear eye is one that is devoted to Him, and sees Him as more valuable than anything else.
        • We are visual beings, we want to see results, we can look at something and see all sorts of things. Consider how a few of us looked at the Lego C3PO…
          • Sawyer – cool toy to play with
          • Josh – amazing collectors piece to display
          • Dustin - $400 to put toward buying a new car
          • But….A focus on the Lord reveals…an opportunity for all of us to see that the Lord brings what is hidden to the light, and what is truly precious before the Lord is a heart that is contrite and convicted over sin seeking to grow.
  • Jesus closes our passage with this:
    • No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.
  • So – as you want to grow in stewarding your treasures….let me close by asking you:
    • Who is your audience?
  • The answer to those questions will determine what you value and how you live….Let’s take the words of Jesus and steward the treasures He has given us as we seek the ultimate treasure – Jesus Himself

So as we consider our audience, we are also to ask….

II. Where is My Storehouse? (vv 19-21)

So once you have your audience right, and once you are storing up the proper treasure in the proper place, what question should you ask next…the next question is….

III. How is My Eye? (vv 22-23)

So when we value the Lord above all else, that we see Him clearly, that light impacts us in such a way that we also then get to be a conduit of the Light…Jesus says, “our whole body will be full of light….”

  • He said earlier….
  • Matthew 5:14–16 — 14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; 15 nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
  • When we see the Lord clearly, we can also help others see the Lord clearly in our testimony.
  • Psalm 27:1-14 (Page 402)
  • The Psalmist has a clear eye…he sees the Lord over and above all his desires, and all his adversaries. He sees the Lord as most valuable and most important….
  • In the living nativity and also in your own living room.
    • It’s an important one…
      • Through this whole passage, the Lord is making a contrast between the earthy and the heavenly.
        • The Lord is saying that half measures don’t work, compromises where you get to be the Lord for a while and God gets to be the Lord for a while don’t work.
        • Not only does that go against the character of our Lord, but it doesn’t work in our own heart because eventually, you will grow to hate one and be devoted to one.
        • So if you try to approach the Christian life in a way where you try to find that perfect balance where you honor the Lord just the right amount, and you also get everything you want…it will not work….it is a balance beam where you will fall off on one side.
      • The truth is you are a servant and not a master…
        • You are a steward, not a master….we must start by embracing that identity, and be honest that we often want to be the master…
          • If we serve wealth there is always the idea that we will gain enough to be in charge, to be the master, to have the financial freedom to do whatever I want.
        • Yet so often those who are driven by money are consumed with getting more or keeping what they have….
          • and no matter how much they have, they are still a servant to the unrelenting taskmaster of more.
          • BUT if the treasure you are after is God Himself, if you want to serve Him then here is the good news:
        • He is a really Good Master
          • Jesus goes on to say in Matthew 11:28-30
            • Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.
              • So even the labor our Master has for us leads to rest
              • Serving Him, being in our masters presence is where we ultimately find Joy….
          • Psalm 16:11 — 11 You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.
    • Where is your storehouse?
    • How is your eye?
    • Who is your Master?

(if time) Listen to the testimony of the Psalmist….that helps us see the Lord accurately…..

When you see the Lord as your light and salvation, when you see what is truly valuable, others can then see what you value, and you are an image bearer of the Glory of God….and we can live out our mandate to be the light of the world.

So let’s say you are living before the correct audience (Jesus), you are storing up treasures in the proper place (heaven), and you see clearly with the eyes of faith so others see your faith lived out, what is the final question of our passage?

IV. Who is My Master? (v 24)

Dustin Folden

Roles

Pastor of Discipleship & Extension Ministries - Faith Church

Bio

B.S - Electrical Engineering, Purdue University
M.Div. - Faith Bible Seminary

Pastor Dustin Folden and his wife Trisha joined the Pastoral Staff in 2010. They have two children, Mackenna & Sawyer. They enjoy playing board games, cooking together and going on hiking adventures. Pastor Folden shepherds the 9:30 worship service, oversees the Adult Bible Fellowship ministry, the Wednesday evening Faith Community Institute as well as serves in Faith Biblical Counseling Ministries.

Read Dustin Folden's Journey to Faith for the full account of how the Lord led Pastor Folden to Faith Church.