What is Valuable?

Image result for looking at diamondHave you ever watched one of those shows like Antique Roadshow or even Pawnstars? People are always hopeful that the old Samurai sword they found in the attic or the vase that Aunt Edna willed to them will be worth a fortune. Sometimes they are evaluated highly…mostly they’re not.

Finding something of value is the theme for the passage we’ll be looking at this Sunday as we continue our study of Matthew, reading chapter 13:44-58.

The parable of the hidden treasure and the pearl of great price carry on the prior theme of something hidden and unexpected (like that of the wheat and weeds, the mustard seed and the leaven), but now a new dimension is added: value. Jesus is trying to get across the great value of God’s in-breaking kingdom in comparison to all other things/religions/philosophies/pursuits of life. In what way do you understand God’s rule over your life and this world to be of value? How do you understand it to be the most valuable thing, if you do? What do you think it means to prioritize and value God’s kingdom more than anything else?

The parable of the dragnet leaves the world of agriculture and sets us out to sea. Once again, we have something hidden yet productive as our motif. Why do you think its important that Jesus describes the indiscriminate nature of the net in that it gathers all kinds of fish? What about this story reveals the value of God’s rule to you?

The parable of the old and new treasure seems to be making a closing point to the line of thought we’ve been on. What do you think the old and the new treasure represents in this story? How does this fit into your understanding of how God’s kingdom is at work in your life and this world? How can something old shed light on something new, and visa versa? How did we see that being played out in Jesus’ ministry and later in that of the church?

At the end of the chapter there is yet another story of Jesus being rejected. It sort of plays out in the narrative what was implied in the stories of the wheat and weeds and the dragnet. Why did the people of Nazareth reject Jesus? Based on the last line of this chapter – what is it that ultimately informs our sense of Jesus’ value?

This will be a challenging and, I think, interesting excursion through the stories Jesus tells us. Hope to see you on Sunday!

 

 

 

 

One comment

  1. Well, the understanding of God’s rule over my life and this world brings me a peace unavailable anywhere else..Knowing He is in control, despite my personal circumstances and the lack of visible peace in the world at large enables me to press on in this journey..His good rule over all brings a sense of security, hope and purpose that can’t be found in earthly treasures or pleasures..I think prioritizing God’s kingdom more than anything else means giving up anything, everything, for the sake of revealing His heart and ways to those around us…Practically speaking it means giving up our right to be right, choosing to apologize instead of argue, to give instead of take, to love at all costs..That’s the example we were given by Jesus at the cross…The notes in my bible say that these 1st few parables could also point to Jesus as the purchaser of the field and the pearl…He giving his all to purchase this Kingdom of children God has given him…He loved us enough to die for us, we in turn have the opportunity to live dying to ourselves for him.
    I love that the dragnet is indiscriminate..God created all men equal and invites all to him..We’re all chosen and valuable to him as indicative in the dragnet and our choices reveal the value we place on him…
    It seems like the old and the new treasure may represent the old and new covenants…The Old covenant pointing to the new and the new fulfilling the old…Jesus quoted from the old testament revealing himself as the promised savior. He was the King of the Jews and is the King of Kings..He was the one they were all waiting for and continues to be the one, the everything humanity is still searching for. His word old and new informs us that he and his kingdom are the all in all, we need.
    The sense of familiarity the people of Nazareth associated with Jesus and his family blinded them from belief. They refused to have ears to hear, to even consider the possibility that God was speaking to them, in their very midst…..
    This is so very sobering…I think it expands the prior parable even further…We never want to become so familiar with the word that we stop allowing it to speak to us…We don’t want to “tune out” when we’re reading or hearing his word because we’re familiar with a certain passage..God says his word is alive, it may have applied to an area of our lives in the past but he may very well be using it to speak in another way or another area today. God please continue giving us ears to hear your voice, help us never limit the potential of your life giving words!

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