Colossians 3:1 If then you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.2Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. 3For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
Where do you keep your treasures? Its an amazing question because right away your mind thinks back to that special place. The rest of life may be very disorganized, but it seems we always know where are treasures are. Well, almost... sometimes even they get lost, or misplaced, because in the course of life, there might be many things that we treasure. And what ever our greatest treasure it, thatís always in that special place, and we know where it is. And of the things that get lost, well, they may have been treasures, but somehow something else has taken its place.
Now treasures are important, we might not DO anything with them but look at them. But when we look at them, we say, YES, this is a good treasure, it is worth having, I have chosen wisely. At this point it doesnít even matter what it is that we treasure, for our only consideration is how do we treat treasures, and how they affect our lives.
Now many people keep their treasures in a special place, a secret hiding place, a place to keep it safe. And having thought about our treasures, the question remains, having we chosen wisely? Do we have a treasure worth living for, or dying for?
You see there is a treasure we have, and donít have, both at the same time. Its in a hiding place, and its ours, but unlike the treasures of this world, at present we cannot take it out and look at it. And because we cannot touch it or hold it, or even look at it closely, sometimes we forget that it is ours, and sometimes other treasures take it place. It is the treasure of salvation, by grace through faith for Christís sake. We have been given a new life, but that new life is hidden in Christ with God. Now on the one hand, thatís good, because no one can take it from God, he will keep it safe, he will bring it to pass. But on the other hand, because its hidden, at present, sometimes we forget that it is ours, and we go back to living the "old life" and thatís bad, because in the old life we were slaves to sin, death, and the devil. Only in the new life have we been set free. Only in the new life do we have the power to say no to sin, to resist temptation, and to live as the children of God.
But how do you live a life that is hidden with Christ in God? You set your mind on where Christ is, in heaven, at the right hand of God, and yet at the same time, he is here in our midst. So we set our minds on the things of God. We set our minds towards being with Christ. We set our minds on the things eternal, for the things of this world are passing away. And we remember that in baptism we were joined to Christís death, so that we might live looking forward to the resurrection. And while we look forward to the resurrection, at the same time, we already have been raised, our new life has already begun, God in Christ, through water and the Word has made us a new creation, with a new life.
Now it may be that we have had other treasures, and not the faith, life and salvation that is ours in Jesus Christ. This is idolatry, and idolatry is sin. Sin kills, it makes life now miserable, and it leads to an eternal misery of eternal punishment. Sin hurts us. Sin also hurts God, because God loves us and does not want us to perish. Sin hurts God because it says that his gift of His only begotten Son into death for our sakes, is unimportant to us. But there is a cure for sin, for Christ has made repentance possible. We can turn from sin, and return to God. And returning to ask for mercy, and beg for forgiveness. We deserve neither, yet Godís love is great enough, and Jesus blood is sufficient to cleanse us from all sin. This is our hope, and the promise of God, forgiveness.
Forgiveness carries further grace, to enable us to live the new life to which we have been called in Christ. So daily, we remember the treasure that is hidden with Christ in God, and daily we repent of all sin, of all our love for the things of this world. Daily we repent for wandering away from our Great Good Shepherd. And he is good, for daily he calls us to repentance, and daily he carries us through repentance back to the place that he has prepared for us, that we might be fully supplied with every good thing, have peace with God, peace in our souls, and peace with our fellow man.
And daily we are given the opportunity to share with others, to remind them of the hope that is ours in Christ, to remind them of the life that is ours in Christ, to remind them to set their minds on the things above, and to encourage them to live such lives that give glory to God, for Jesus sake.