Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and were thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Throughout scripture, Jesus is dealing with our hearts, not the outward appearance. Man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart. Worry, akin to fear, is a heart issue and leads us to hoard material goods because we don’t trust God to take care of our tomorrow.
This is not talking about planning ahead and leaving an inheritance for your children, which is biblical. It is talking about focus, perspective, and priorities. It is talking about the heart.
In verses 22 and 23, Jesus talks about the eye as the lamp of the body. How do you and I look at things? How do you and I see things? In this context, how do we see money in relationship to the future? Are we trusting God and faithfully spending, tithing, and saving? Or are we stockpiling with a heart full of resentment and fear?
The heart is the source of man’s motives, which determines whether his actions are good are evil. Are you saving and living a stingy life because deep down you believe God won’t take care of you? Or are you faithfully managing your finances as a steward of God’s blessings, knowing His love for you is infinite? The difference can be very subtle on the outside and only you and God know the motives of your heart. Only I know the real reason for my actions if I am honest before God.
Verse 24 goes on to say, “No man can serve two masters.” It seems there is no middle ground in this relationship between trusting money and trusting God. If you do one, you cannot do the other. If you love and serve God properly, you will have no heart investment in your money. Sure, you can have money, lots of it. But it won’t have you.
In the same way, if you are devoted in your heart to money and material wealth, you will not be able to love and trust God properly. Sure, you can be a Christian and have God in your life, but He won’t have you. You will be fighting and scratching to get ahead in the world and falling behind in heaven’s blessings and priorities.
So Jesus says very gently and lovingly in verses 25 through 34, do not worry. God will take care of you. Do not worry, God has tomorrow covered. And in verse 34, is the crux of the issue: Seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness, and you can rest assured that your material needs will all be take care of. This is the issue of the heart we must all wrestle with.
Can we put God first, live as children of His kingdom, prioritize His goodness, and rest in complete confidence in His loving and abundant provision? It might mean letting go of old tapes, old habits, and old wounds that told us we must fight for every crumb. It might be a struggle to enter His rest, but compared to the lifelong struggle to take care of ourselves, it will be worth it.