As I was meditating on Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 13:44-46 on the kingdom of heaven, I realized how vast and deep it is. We must not skip over these parables too quickly. These two parables are a couplet, because they both point to a person looking and finding something of such extreme value that it is worth “selling” everything else they have to obtain the “treasure” or “pearl of great price”. This is NOT bargain shopping!
Most preaching and commentaries on this section focus on the value of the “treasure” or “pearl,” and that is the main point. I am seeing something that indicates how much a person really values what they find. The person in this parable “Sells all that he has and buys” the treasure for his own possession. We cannot have both the treasured possession and items once considered important. The act of ‘selling’ is not so much a monitory issue, but removing things we once thought had value and can no longer have a place in our lives. We can no longer give them time, attention, or resources. Basically, we remove them from our priority list and active attention.
There is more to this idea of ‘selling’ than just getting rid of unwanted distractions. We gain more resources from ‘selling’ what has no value to invest in the new found “treasure” or “pearl of great price.” By doing this, I am giving even more value to the “treasure” or “pearl of great price” in time and attention.
This is a very difficult change for us in the Western World, because we have been duped into thinking that other things beside the kingdom of God have great value they really do not have. How much more could you invest in the “treasure” of knowing Christ more (Philippians 3:7-11) if you sold things (activities) that have no eternal value? Paul calls those things “rubbish” (2:8).
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