God or Mammon

Matthew 6:19-24

Tonight I want to begin a series of messages concerning the Christian and his possessions. Traditionally this is a very sensitive subject. When the subject of a preacher's message is the matter of money or possessions, he is often accused of leaving spiritual matters and beginning to meddle in affairs that is not his concern.

Believe me, I have no desire to meddle tonight. However, it is my contention that there is nothing more spiritual in a Christian's life than their attitude toward material possessions! Why do I say such a thing? Because it is an issue of the believer's heart. If our heart's are not right concerning this issue, then our heart's are not right toward God! Let me re-phrase that for you tonight. If you are not obedient to God's Word in this matter, God is not pleased with your life! It is sin that must be confessed, repented of, and cleansed.

Note our text this evening. Mt. 6:19-24 Jesus begins, as usual, by presenting a great principle and then the explanation. The principle: Lay not up treasures upon earth...but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven.

I. The Command Reveals a Difference.

II. The Command Reveals a Difficulty.

III. The Command Reveals a Danger. v21

Conclusion: Note: 2 Co. 13:5, "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves..." Tonight I want to challenge each of us to do just that in this matter of possessions. Are we laying up treasures on this earth that will be of no eternal value? Or are we laying up treasures in heaven? An hour spent visiting someone who is in need of encouragement, witnessing to the lost, helping the needy. These are truly treasures. Money spent for missions, or investing in the spiritual growth of others is never lost! Jim Elliot, missionary who was killed as he endeavored to take the Gospel to the Auca Indians in South America, made this statement: He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. Everytime we have a missionary we have an opportunity to make eternal investments. Everytime we hear from them on the field we have an opportunity to make an eternal investment. What good is our money, if we do not invest it in the Lord's work?