Category Archives: Pual Washer

Is Your Eye Clear?

By Paul Washer

<quote>”Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where

moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.

But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither

moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or

steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear,

your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad,

your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that

is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness! No one can

serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the

other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You

cannot serve God and wealth.

Matthew 6:19-24 </quote>

The previous is one of the most important passages in the

Scriptures with regard to Christian priorities and missions.

According to this Scripture, the Christian is to be on constant

guard in order not to stray from eternal priorities. Two

choices are always before us. One choice offers immediate

rewards that are temporal and deceptive. The other is a narrow

road which may cost us everything, but the rewards

are eternal and beyond the ability of even Scripture to describe.

God’s Treasure

If we know that which is most treasured by God, then we will

know that which should be most treasured by us – God’s treasure

and ours should be the same. This is the very thing that

made the life of Jesus so different from the life of every other

man. He treasured only what His Father treasured. May God

grant us the grace to do the same.

What is it that God most treasures? With only a cursory reading

of the Scripture, we quickly discover that God’s priority

is His own Glory. He desires that every aspect of His being,

attributes, and works be made known to creation and that all

praise and honor be ascribed only to Him. Consider the following

Scriptures:

“For from the rising of the sun even to its setting, My name

will be great among the nations.”

Malachi 1:11

“Pray, then, in this way: ‘Our Father who is in heaven, hallowed

be Your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done,

on earth as it is in heaven.’”

Matthew 6:9-10

It is God’s great desire or treasure to see His Name held in

highest esteem among the nations, and among all creatures

in heaven and on earth. At first sight, this may appear selfcentered,

but first sights are often very deceptive. For God to

seek His glory above all else is the greatest demonstration of

His love.

The depth of one’s love is often demonstrated by the costliness

of the gift he/she gives. If someone was to give you

a twig or a small fragment of gravel, it would not be an

overwhelming demonstration of love. You would not rush

out to alert the media, nor would you gather your friends

about you to tell them of this great love that has been shown

to you. It would not be something that you remembered

very long, much less, that you held close to your heart all

the days of your life. However, if someone gave his life that

you might live, this would indeed warrant such a reaction.

It would be a story worth the media’s attention, and your

friends would most likely want to hear all about it. You

would treasure such a selfless act of love all the days of your

life. So then, the measure of one’s love is often manifested

by the greatness of one’s gift.

Now we must ask ourselves a question: “What is the greatest

gift that God could ever give?” It is not prosperity, health, or

even heaven. He Himself is the greatest gift. The most loving

thing that God can do for His creatures is to work in such a

way so as to reveal or demonstrate the fullness of His glory

to them – to take center stage and call all creatures to fix their

eyes and hearts upon Him. For this very reason, when God

does what He does for His own glory, it is the greatest demonstration

of His love toward the creature.

The adverse of this is equally true. The most destitute and

pitiful of all creatures are those who do not know God, who

are unaware of His glory, and cut off from His truth. The

Scriptures declare that God has set eternity in the hearts of

men (Ecclesiastes 3:11). This infinite aspect of the heart can

only be filled by the infinite. Man may pour into his heart all

the fame, wealth, power, and pleasure that this world has to

offer, but he will still be empty. Eternity cannot be filled up

with the temporal, nor can infinity be satisfied by the finite.

Man’s heart was made for the full measure of God’s glory.

Apart from this, man is destitute, miserable, and empty.

In summary, God’s treasure, His greatest desire and purpose

is that His Name be great among the nations, that His Name

be hallowed (highly esteemed), that His Kingdom come, and

His will be done! However, we must ask ourselves, “Is this

our greatest purpose and passion?”

We lay awake at night and worry about so many things. We

fret and are anxious about so many things. We desire things

passionately, fanatically, even to the point of obsession:

houses and lands, jobs and promotions, fame and reputation,

needs, and wants, and countless other things. But when was

the last time that sleep escaped us because of our concern for

the nations that have not heard? When was the last time that

our hearts broke in two because there are places on this earth

where God’s Name is not hallowed, His kingdom advances

ever so slowly, and His will is not foremost in the hearts of

men? We fret and sweat about so many things, but do we ever

give any thought to that which is most on the mind of God?

Christ’s Warning

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth

and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.”

In this verse, Jesus is calling for a radical decision on the part

of His disciples to repent of their earthly materialism and

turn their hearts toward God and His kingdom. Although the

Scriptures speak of wealth as neither good nor bad, it does

warn us that the love of wealth is a great evil (I Timothy

6:10) and that the seeking and hoarding of wealth will

only lead to loss and shame on the day of judgment ( James

5:2-3).

Regardless of the warnings that run throughout Scripture, it

seems that the desire for wealth is God’s greatest competitor

for the hearts of men. It is ironic that although most people

spend most of their time, “treasuring treasures,” very few ever

really “possess treasures.” And those rare individuals who actually

do obtain their treasures here on earth quickly grow

tired of them once they are obtained. Is it not a very foolish

thing to trade the glorious gifts of God for earthly treasures

that we rarely do obtain, and if by chance we do obtain them,

we quickly grow tired of them?

Name one thing on this earth that is highly coveted by men

and we can quickly assess its true value with one simple question:

“Is it eternal?” If it is, it is worthy of being obtained even

at the expense of all other things. If not, its worth is equivalent

to the dust into which it will turn. To seek for it is a pathetic

waste of a human life and fool’s errand.

Christ’s Admonition

“But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither

moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break

in or steal.”

The Scriptures do not speak against treasure or the pursuit

of treasure, but it does speak against foolishly wasting the

life God has given us in the vain pursuit of things that have

no eternal value and can never fill the infinite desire of a

heart made for eternity. In Isaiah 55:2, the Scripture shakes

its head in bewilderment at men who seek for the temporal

at the expense of the eternal:

“Why do you spend money for what is not bread, and your

wages for what does not satisfy?”

Nothing except the person and will of God can fill a man. The

only treasure worth having is that which is eternal and comes

from God. Such treasure is found only by doing His will, living

for His glory, and seeking after His Kingdom. Has God

not promised to care for us? Has He not promised to meet

our every need? Has He not shown Himself capable and willing

to fill His children with blessing and to not withhold from

them one good thing? Why, then, do we put earthly pursuits

ahead of the pursuit of God and God’s pursuits? Our one

obligation is also our only means of truly living an abundant

and satisfied life – “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His

righteousness” (Matthew 6:33). Heaven and earth shall pass

away, the inferior products of this world will burn up in the

fire as hay, wood, and stubble (I Corinthians 3:12-15). However,

the man who does the will of God will abide forever and

his works will stand throughout eternity (I John 2:17). There

will be no regrets in heaven for having lived “too much” for

the kingdom of God, but we can be assured that there will be

great regrets for having lived “so little.”

The Undeniable Truth

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Ever so often in Scripture, we are confronted by certain statements

that open our hearts and reveal the truth about our

character and desires. The verse above is one of those statements.

Regardless of how often or forcefully we declare that

God and His Kingdom are our greatest desire, the true desire

of our life can be revealed by smallest and simplest of questions:

Where is our heart? What occupies our thoughts above

all other things? What do we long for? Can we say in truth

that God and His Kingdom are our passion?

What if a stranger who did not know of our Christian confession

watched our lives and read our thoughts? Would he be

convinced that God and His Kingdom are our two greatest

priorities? Would he hear almost constant conversation about

the mercies of God and the advancement of His Kingdom?

Would he hear us pray with passion for the unevangelized

nations? Would he see us passing a sleepless night because

God’s Name is not highly esteemed among all peoples,

because His Kingdom has not covered the entire earth, or

because His will is not obeyed or even known by the great

majority of men?

If most were honest, we would be forced to admit that he

would hear us speaking about houses and lands, cars and

toys, recreations and hobbies. He would see us obsessed with

worldly worries, wants, and pleasures. He would hear very

little about God in our daily conversation, would see little

activity directed toward the advancement of the Kingdom,

and would think it preposterous for us to claimed that our

treasure is in heaven!

Clear Eyes

“The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear,

your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad,

your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that

is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!”

In saying that the “eye is the lamp of the body,” Jesus is not

giving us instructions in human physiology, but rather is

teaching us about the great influence that our desires have

on our lives. Our body goes where our eyes are focused, and

our eyes focus on what our heart desires. If our heart desires

worldly things, then worldly things will be our focus and the

very things we pursue. However, if our heart truly desires the

things of God, then our eyes will be fixed on them, and we

will pursue them with a passion. The clear eye has a single vision

without confusion or duplicity. A.T. Robertson writes, “If

our eyes are healthy, we see clearly and with a single focus. If

the eyes are diseased (bad, evil), cross-eyed or cockeyed, we

see double and confuse our vision. We keep one eye on the

hoarded treasures of earth and roll the other proudly up to

heaven” (Word Pictures).

As disciples of Jesus Christ, we are called to singleness of

heart and purpose. We are called to seek first the Kingdom

of God and entrust all our worldly needs to the Master. He

knows what we need before we ask Him and is disposed to

do good things for His children.

Two Masters

“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one

and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise

the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.”

Jesus taught a great deal about money. The reason is simple

– In this fallen world, money seems to be God’s greatest competitor

for the hearts of men. If by grace, a man has freed

himself from the love and pursuit of wealth, he has opened

himself to the possibility of undivided devotion to God.

Fallen man is a slave to someone. The question is not whether

or not a man is a slave, but whose slave is he? Some men are

enslaved to other men, some to themselves, and others to

things such as money, security, and respectability. Other men

are given to vain pursuits, deceitful pleasures, or something as

“harmless” as a hobby. The list is almost endless, but Christ

calls us to turn away from such slavery and turn wholeheartedly

and without reservation to Him.

Although the above Scripture teaches us that it is IMPOSSIBLE

to serve God and wealth, the application is far reaching.

There can be no competitors in the heart of the believer.

We must constantly survey our lives and search out competing

loyalties. When we find them, we must be careful to deal

with them severely. We must not show them even the slightest

compassion. If we spare them, they will become barbs

in our eyes and thorns in our side (Numbers 33:55). We can

never truly serve God while such things are hanging around

our hearts. Even those things most precious to us must not be

excused from our censure. Jesus taught that it is better for our

right hand and right eye to suffer violent mutilation than for

them to become stumbling blocks to the upward call of true

discipleship (Matthew 5:29-30). We must put away anything

that deters us from Him and His pursuits. Our lives are on

the line and eternity is at stake! The Expositor’s Bible Commentary

concludes:

“Both God and money are portrayed, not as employers, but

as slave owners. A man may work for two employers; but

since ‘single ownership and full time service are the very essence

of slavery’ (Tasker), he cannot serve two slave owners.

Either God is served with a single-eyed devotion, or he is not

served at all. Attempts at divided loyalty betray, not partial

commitment to discipleship, but deep-seated commitment to

idolatry.”

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