“The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure buried in a field; which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.”
“The Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls. When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells all he has and buys it.”
In both parables both appreciate the true value of what they have discovered. Both are certain about the wisdom of what they must do and are willing to put everything on the line to secure their newfound treasure.
Today Jesus is asking us to determine how much we treasure the Kingdom of Heaven. How valuable is Heaven to us and what are we prepared to do to secure it? Are we prepared to give all we’ve got and to renounce everything that gets in the way? If the two men in the parables had passed their treasure by or failed to recognise the treasure’s value, we would have thought them insane, yet this is how we behave all the time.
All too often we are prepared to let the Kingdom of Heaven slip through our fingers. Perhaps we do this because we have never stopped to reflect on how valuable the Kingdom of Heaven is. Perhaps we have recognised the value of God’s Kingdom to us but have forgotten it in the day-to-day distractions of putting meals on the table and paying the bills. Perhaps heaven’s rewards seem so distant that we prefer instead to work for more immediate and tangible rewards …. , home improvements, fame, social acceptance and career development. Perhaps we think we can work on God’s agenda and our own agenda simultaneously, recognising the value of God’s Kingdom but not quite able to renounce our own self-interest.
Jesus gives us some concrete advice. He tells us that those who study the scriptures and search diligently will find the discernment to recognise God’s treasure and the wisdom to secure it.