Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field. — Matthew 13:44
A number of years ago, a friend of mine was persuaded to get involved in recreational salmon fishing. Before he could actually go fishing, he had to purchase the necessary equipment: the fishing rod, a special reel, tackle, boots, bait, etc. His initial purchase cost him around $200, and added to that was the cost of travel to and from the river. In spite of the financial outlay, he was convinced that his new interest was worth the investment. After a few trips, he actually was successful in landing a four-pound salmon. What excitement! What a feeling, landing that first catch! Even though the real cost of the fish came to more than $50 per pound, the thrill of catching it and the satisfaction in eating what he had caught made it worth every dollar. If he had decided to forego trying the sport because of the high price, he would have missed out on the great rewards of salmon fishing.
Fishing may not appeal to everyone. However, there is one treasure that we should all be willing to “sell out” to obtain — the treasure of the Gospel! Sometimes people focus too much on the cost of giving up their sinful lives to serve the Lord. It seems the more the Lord deals with them, the tighter they cling to their worldly friends, sinful activities, or places of amusement. If only they could experience the rich rewards that are part of God’s treasure! While it may seem that denying self and making deep consecrations to God are too high of a price to pay, they would receive so much more in exchange. Nothing on earth is worth more than the eternal treasures of Heaven.
When we give up our earthly desires to follow God, He gives us peace in our hearts. There is excitement in salvation, in knowing that God has a special and fulfilling plan all mapped out for our lives. Following salvation, there are other benefits, such as sanctification (heart purity), the baptism of the Holy Ghost (power for service), the fellowship of the saints, healing for our bodies, deliverance from Hell, and a home prepared for us in Heaven. And let’s not forget the privilege of spending eternity with the Lord! How could any earthly “joy” compare with these?
When we choose to obtain, at any cost, what God offers, we will not be disappointed. The benefits of serving God far exceed any price, and the dividends we reap will make us spiritually and eternally rich!
Jesus’ parables about the hidden treasure (13:44), and the pearl merchant (13:45-46), both describe the value of Heaven compared to the things on earth. The parable of the fishing net (13:47-50) has been paralleled to the parable of the wheat and tares (13:24-30) in that they both teach that people are to obey God and spread His Word to others. However, the sorting of who is and who is not part of the Kingdom of Heaven will be done at the Rapture.
In verses 51-52, Jesus inquired whether His hearers understood. He pointed out to them that every man who is acquainted with the Gospel truth should have it as a resource, or treasure, that could be brought forth when necessary. Like a householder who would bring forth from his treasures, they could share the Gospel as occasion demanded — whether the need be sickness, or calamity, or poverty.
Jesus returned to Nazareth after He was in the Gergesene country, where He healed the two demon-possessed men (Matthew 8:28-34). He re-crossed the sea to Capernaum and from there traveled to His hometown of Nazareth. When Jesus arrived, He discovered the people in His hometown did not believe that He was Christ. Many Bible scholars believe that because the people of Nazareth were acquainted with Jesus’ family, and had known Jesus since He was a young child, they could not bring themselves to look beyond the man to hear His message. Because of the Nazarenes’ unbelief, Jesus did few miracles there.
Jesus says in verse 57, “A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house.” In other words, a prophet is often honored everywhere except in his own hometown.
(Hannah’s Bible Outlines - Used by permission per WORDsearch)
IV. The opposition to the King
B. The consequences of the King’s rejection: characteristics of the mystery (interim) kingdom
2. Parables to the disciples
b. The hidden treasure: Jews in the kingdom (13:44)
c. The pearl: Gentiles in the kingdom (13:45-46)
d. The dragnet: judgment at the end of the kingdom (13:47-50)
e. The householder: both old and new things in the kingdom (13:51-52)
C. The consummation of the King’s rejection
1. Rejection at Nazareth (13:53-58)
Nothing we give up on earth will amount to the eternal treasures we will gain in Heaven!