19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures
upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through
and steal: 20 But lay up for
yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and
where thieves do not break through nor steal: 21
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
22 The light of the body is the eye: if
therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.
23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole
body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be
darkness, how great is that
[There are five crowns and seven privileges revealed in the
Bible that may be won or set up for one’s self in heaven to come.
There are other rewards that may be set up as well, but these crowns and
privileges are clearly available. ]
[The crowns include,]
[The Incorruptible Crown won for mastering this
Christian Life (1 Cor 9.25-27)]
[The Crown of Life won for enduring persecution
The Crown of Glory won for being an example for
God’s people (1 Pet 5.2-4)
[The Crown of Righteouness won for loving and
longing for Christ’s appearing (2 Tim 4.8)]
[The Crown of Rejoicing won for witnessing and
win the lost to Christ (1 Thess 2.19-20)]
[The privileges are awarded to the overcomers and include,]
[A privilege awarded for loving Christ’s
appearing (Rev 2.7)]
[A privilege awarded for maintaining a sound
witness (Rev 2.11)]
[A privilege awarded for maintaining your
integrity (Rev 2.17)]
[A privilege awarded for keeping yourself
spiritually pure (Rev 2.26-29)]
[A privilege awarded for being faithful (Rev
[A privilege awarded for cleaving to God’s Word
[A privilege awarded for holding a fervent and
pure heart (Rev 3.21)]
[By building for eternity I am asking you, What have you done
to work for these eternal rewards?
Are you setting up your treasures and rewards in heaven?
When thinking about these rewards, there aren’t really all that many of
them, but I thought maybe there is a simplified way to think about living our
Christian life so that we can maximize our eternal rewards.]
[So, Just what must you
really do to build toward eternity?]
If you will build
toward eternity, you must,
Planned Discipline [– By discipline I do not mean abrasive
correction. Instead I am thinking
about training and conditioning.
Planned discipline deals with Mastering
The Christian Life. In considering
the eternal rewards listed with the crowns and privileges one discovers that
there are at least
seven out of
these twelve rewards that are connected to your spiritual discipline.
Therefore, you should become keenly aware of how important being
spiritually disciplined is for you as a child of God.
You absolutely must learn what it means to be a Christian and then train
yourself to live accordingly.]
[In thinking about this planned discipline the first thing
that comes to mind is that every Christian characteristic is connected to
spiritual discipline and any kind of spiritual discipline is connected to a love
for God and a love for others.]
[There are two important disciplines that must be worked into
every child of God.]
Disciplined In Your Desires (2 Cor 10.5-6; 2 Pet 2.7-8) [– In
thinking about our desires I am thinking about,]
[The way you
think – It seems in our day that Christians think more and more like the
world. The way the world thinks
about immorality and sensuality is very different than how God thinks about
these same issues.]
[God is undeniably clear about,]
[Fornication – Fornication is sexual immorality and includes
premarital sex, homosexuality, and any other obscene sexuality.]
[Adultery – Adultery is any kind of extra marital sexual activity
and anything that leads up to it.
Pornography, sensuality, and inappropriate relationships.]
[The question is, what do you think about those things
that matter to God. Do you think
more like the world or do you think like God.
God has told us in the Bible that the way we think matters, it makes all
of the difference in the world.]
[The bible reminds us,]
5 Casting down imaginations, and every
high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God,
and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of
Christ; 6 And having in a readiness
to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled. ]
8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things
are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things
are just, whatsoever things
are pure, whatsoever things
are lovely, whatsoever things
are of good report; if
there be any virtue, and if
there be any praise, think on these things. ]
[The way you think matters and it is the starting
point for everything else in your life. If
you will prepare and build yourself for eternity then you must get the way you
think under control and right with God.]
[The desires you
have – We all wrestle with our desires.
Some people might say, “I really struggle with the way I think because of
the things I want or desire.” Many
feel that their desires control their thinking and that they cannot help what
they are thinking about because of what they want.]
[Without any doubt our thinking is connected to our
desires. But your thinking guides
your heart or your desires. Think
rightly about any issue and your desires will fall into place.]
Influences that affect you - Those things you allow into your life.
The television shows and movies you watch will influence your thinking.
The music you listen to will influence your thinking.
The people who are your friends will influence your thinking. The Word of
God will influence your thinking.
Now, movies, music, and people are a part of our lives.
But are these things influencing you toward godliness, righteousness and
morality, or are they vexing your soul?]
[What do I mean by vexing your souls?]
[2 Peter 2:7-8
And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the
wicked: 8 (For that righteous man
dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed
his righteous soul from day to
day with their unlawful deeds;)]
[Vexed (vs 7)
– καταπονούμενον (Gk) - contracted
from katá (2596), an intens., and
to labor, which is from
To wear out or down by
labor. In the pass.
to be vexed, weary, oppressed, afflicted (Acts 7:24; 2 Pet. 2:7). ]
[Vexed (vs 8) -
(931), an examination by torture, torment.
To torture, afflict with
pain, vex, harass (2 Pet. 2:8); used metaphorically meaning to
examine, scrutinize, either by words or physical torment (Rev. 9:5); vex
physically with toil (Mark 6:48); of a vessel tossed by the waves (Matt. 14:24);
spoken of disease (Matt. 8:6); of the pains of giving birth (Rev. 12:2); of
punishment (Matt. 8:29; Mark 5:7; Luke 8:28; Rev. 11:10 [see also Rev. 11:6;
[This wicked world will wear at you day by day to tear
you down and wear you out spiritually and morally.
The influences that are around you will pick at your beliefs and the Word
of God within you.]
[Now, will you be like Lot who willingly allowed the world to wear him down or
will you be like Abraham who protected himself from the world and actually
walked with God?]
[Vexed by Choice
was wore down or vexed because of his thinking and desires.
He wanted and went after things that tore him away form God.
Hence, we need to discipline ourselves or train ourselves to master this
Christian life and establish the kind of love for God and righteousness that
will lead us to set up at least seven eternal rewards in our heavenly home.]
Disciplined In Your Decisions (Matt 7.15-20) [– Your decisions direct
your actions. Your decisions are
linked to your desires. What you
think about and the way you think about things direct those things that you
decide to do.
Your decision are
reflected in your actions.
What is it that you actually do?
15 Beware of false prophets, which come
to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do
men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth
good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil
fruit, neither can a corrupt
tree bring forth good fruit. 19
Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the
fire. 20 Wherefore by their fruits
ye shall know them.]
[I am astounded by the number of young adults who were
raised in good Bible believing Churches, who, upon reaching adulthood, leave
home and walk away from their Church roots.
Is it the Churches fault? No,
the preachers and teachers taught their hearts out, and their hearts are torn
out by the rejections of these young adults.
Is it the parents fault?
These parents are crying out for the apparent lostness of their children who
have wandered from from their lovely Savior.]
[It is the evidence of their lacking personal
discipline and faultering if not lacking relationship with the Lord Jesus
Christ. Are they saved?
Only they and God know? I
will tell you this, parents don’t defend their childhood profession of faith,
you had better let God, His Word, and the preacher dig into the very depths of
their souls or you may lose them for all eternity.
One thing is absolutely certain, there is no discipline in their desires
or decisions and that is a serious lack in their spiritual character.]
Purposeful Discipleship [– Purposeful discipleship will help you
secure at least
crowns and privileges. Discipleship
is therefore incredibly important for your eternal standing in our Heavenly
Home. By discipleship I am talking
about at least two different things.]
(Matt 28.18-20; Jude 1.21-23) [– Reaching out to the lost with the gospel of
our Lord Jesus Christ. That we must
be reaching out to the lost in our world is undeniable.
The Bible records,
[Matthew 28:18-20 18
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in
heaven and in earth. 19 Go ye
therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and
of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20
Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and,
lo, I am with you alway, even
unto the end of the world. Amen. ]
Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our
Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. 22
And of some have compassion, making a difference:
23 And others save with fear, pulling
them out of the fire; hating
even the garment spotted by the flesh. ]
[There is no greater purpose for God’s redeemed than
knowing that they are left in this mortal world after their salvation to bring
the wayward and lost to a saving knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.]
Edification (Eph 4.8-16) [–
To edify means to build up. There
are two type of edification Christians need to think about,]
Edification – You grow spiritually through,]
[The Church, The
Body of Christ (Eph 4.11-12,14; cf. 1 Cor 12.12-27) -
Don’t allow yourself to just go to Church, but go to Church on purpose
and with purpose. Determine that
when you go to Church you are going to learn and grow.
Pay attention on purpose and personally participate.
The Church must be,]
[A Fortress For
You (Eph 4.14) – The Church must be a harbor of hope and rest and a fortress
of strength and security for your life.]
[A Fellowship For
You (Eph 4.15) – If the Church is less than a fellowship for you then you
must ask yourself why. The most
likely reason will be that you have erected some hindrances within yourself.]
With God Personally – Have a personal and purposeful God and I time.
Holding a morning and evening meeting with God and do it with purpose and
passion. Use a spiritual journal to
help guide your heart and mind. Take
persuasive responsibility for your time with God.]
Edification (Eph 4.16) – As you
grow personally, know also that God has put you in this life where you are to
touch and be touched by others.
Understand that you are and should nourish others through your friendship and
16 From whom the whole body fitly joined
together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the
effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto
the edifying of itself in love.]
must resist the tendency of minimizing the importance of the Church in their
life, and more importantly their ministry within the Church.
You have more to offer than you will admit.]
– Is modeled throughout the Bible is a dynamic contributor to edification.
The most common example of effective mentoring is one-on-one
seriously what you are doing for yourself and others through discipleship.
There are at least five eternal rewards outlined in the Bible for those
who will build for eternity through Discipleship]
Persistent Determination [- This deals with standing fast,
overcoming, and enduring to the end.
It refers to losing this life for Christ if necessary and gaining eternal glory
through such sacrifice. There are at
least four crowns and privileges associated with persistent determination.
This unwavering determination is often known as,]
Persecution (Matt 5.10-12) [– Jesus said,]
are they which are persecuted
for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 Blessed are ye, when
men shall revile you, and
persecute you, and shall say all
manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great
is your reward in heaven: for so
persecuted they the prophets which were before you.]
takes on at least three forms. There
[Reviling – this mockery and ridicule.]
[Persecution – This is physical abuse.]
[False Witness – Or the lies and gossip told about you.]
[Persecution is tough to handle and it is always the
result of living a pure and honest life for Christ.
If you are suffering for some wrong you have done, then you are not
[There are great rewards for those who endure while
under the heavy hand of worldly persecution.]
(Matt 10.28-39) [- This is the extreme result of persecution.
It is when one actually gives this mortal life for the cause of Christ.
Many Christians have endured through martyrdom.]
28 And fear not them which kill the body,
but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy
both soul and body in hell. 29 Are
not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the
ground without your Father. 30 But
the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31
Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.
32 Whosoever therefore shall confess
me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.
33 But whosoever shall deny me before
men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.
34 Think not that I am come to send peace
on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.
35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and
the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in
law. 36 And a man's foes
shall be they of his own
household. 37 He that loveth father
or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter
more than me is not worthy of me. 38
And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of
me. 39 He that findeth his life
shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it. ]
things that will help you to build toward eternity.]
Baptist, Sunday Evening, Feb 1, 2009