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Treasures Upon the Earth Matthew 6 Moth and Rust

Posted by adventbiblestudy on May 12, 2010


KJV Matthew 6:19-21
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.

This parable contains a number of symbols easily recognized by most people. As with all of Jesus’ parables, each of these symbols contains a spiritual meaning. All these symbols contain a parallel between the physical aspects of the key words and the spiritual meanings. Understanding the physical traits of each symbol will aid in understanding the proper spiritual meaning. This lesson will study two of the key words contained in the parable as an example of what can be accomplished when taking time to study in a deliberate and organized manner.

A moth is a winged insect, usually appearing at night. Its life cycle referred to as a metamorphosis, begins as an egg, hatching into a larva. The larva feeds on either plants or other material, and sometimes clothing. Development is usually rapid, as they are ravenous feeders. When the larva reaches adult size it enters into a pupa stage. After an incubation period, it appears as a moth, with the sole purpose of breeding.

Thieves are people who steal from others for their own gain, usually material items, valuables. Thieves are often involved in crimes other than theft. They may be armed, causing a theft to easily escalate into a more serious crime.

Moth

KJV Job 13:28. And he, as a rotten thing, consumeth, as a garment that is moth eaten.

KJV Isaiah 50:9. Behold, the Lord God will help me; who is he that shall condemn me? lo, they all shall wax old as a garment; the moth shall eat them up.

KJV Isaiah 51:8. For the moth shall eat them up like a garment, and the worm shall eat them like wool: but my righteousness shall be for ever, and my salvation from generation to generation.

KJV James 5:2
2. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten.

The Bible contains a number of verses commenting on moth eaten clothing. Notice, some of these verses refer to people being eaten by a moth, which clearly indicates a spiritual nature to the symbol of a moth. To understand the spiritual meaning, we must answer the question, what does a garment represent? To find the spiritual meaning of a garment, we will compare texts to identify the hidden meaning.

KJV Zechariah 3:1. And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. 2. And the Lord said unto Satan, The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan; even the Lord that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? 3. Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. 4. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment.

This text identifies the spiritual meaning of a garment, or clothing, by pointing out the fact, God has the ability to change one’s clothing. In doing so, God causes iniquity to pass away, symbolized by the removal of the filthy garments. More information on the spiritual meaning of a garment is revealed in the following texts.

KJV 2 Chronicles 6:41. Now therefore arise, O Lord God, into thy resting place, thou, and the ark of thy strength: let thy priests, O Lord God, be clothed with salvation, and let thy saints rejoice in goodness.

KJV Isaiah 61:10. I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.

The Bible clearly identifies a garment as a symbol for salvation and righteousness. A moth spiritually represents the loss of salvation.

Thief

KJV Exodus 22:7. If a man shall deliver unto his neighbour money or stuff to keep, and it be stolen out of the man’s house; if the thief be found, let him pay double

KJV Deuteronomy 24:7. If a man be found stealing any of his brethren of the children of Israel, and maketh merchandise of him, or selleth him; then that thief shall die; and thou shalt put evil away from among you.

KJV Psalms 50:18. When thou sawest a thief, then thou consentedst with him, and hast been partaker with adulterers.

KJV Proverbs 29:24. Whoso is partner with a thief hateth his own soul: he heareth cursing, and bewrayeth it not.

KJV John 10:10
10. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

All the physical aspects of a thief are found in the Bible. The Bible points out the fact, a thief will not limit themselves to stealing. A thief will also resort to killing and destroying. The parable we are studying clearly contains a spiritual message. To understand the spiritual message we must continue to locate additional texts, to find a spiritual meaning that will fit the context of the parable.

KJV Matthew 26:555. In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me.

KJV Mark 14:48. And Jesus answered and said unto them, Are ye come out, as against a thief, with swords and with staves to take me?

It is interesting to note, the religious authorities in Jerusalem treated Jesus as a thief. A thief was not the only thing they accused Jesus of being.

KJV Matthew 10:25. It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household?

KJV Matthew 12:24. But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, This fellow doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub the prince of the devils. 25. And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand: 26. And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand? 27. And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore they shall be your judges. 28. But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.

The Pharisees treated Jesus like a thief because they wanted to believe, He was sent by Satan. Without knowing it, the Pharisees created this link between a thief and Satan. This is easily discovered using an inductive method of study. This is also an example of how God can use anyone, at any time to accomplish His plans. It does not matter what the person’s beliefs or goals are, God’s plans will never fail, or be altered. This has happened in the past and will continue into the future.

KJV 1 Thessalonians 5:2. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.

Jesus also compares His second coming to a thief in the night. Why would Jesus use the symbol of a thief to represent Himself?

KJV Joel 2:9. They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief.

Joel 2:9 provides a link between the word thief and a common second coming term, to “run to and fro.” The more familiar you are with the Bible the easier an inductive method of study becomes. Recognizing key thoughts and phrases is fundamental to conducting a successful study. In this instance, we are led to investigate a connection between the word thief and Jesus’ second coming through the term, “run to and fro.” This term will help us understand the spiritual meaning of the word thief.

KJV Daniel 12:3. And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever. 4. But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.

The book of Daniel assures us, the wise will shine when they turn to righteousness and knowledge will be increased. God’s followers will have the confidence to face this event as a joyful occasion, while others will look forward to this day with fear and trembling. What causes such a drastic difference of opinion on an event God wants us to be aware of?

KJV 2 Chronicles 16:9. For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him. Herein thou hast done foolishly: therefore from henceforth thou shalt have wars.

KJV Amos 8:11. Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord: 12. And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it.

When Jesus symbolizes His return as a thief in the night, He is referring to the fact, some people will be caught off guard. But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. KJV Matthew 24:43. Applying this to the parable of the moth and thief in Matthew 6:19-21, the spiritual meaning of the thief is found to mean, the thief will steal away the knowledge of Jesus’ return. Considering the connection between the thief and Satan, we see the connection between stolen knowledge and the methods used by Satan to misrepresent the word of God. Satan used this method in the garden of Eden and attempted to use the same deception when he tempted Christ in the wilderness. The good news is, Satan failed in the wilderness. As seen in the physical aspects of a thief and reinforced by the Bible, a thief does not limit himself to the act of theft. It leads to greater offenses. Satan is not satisfied with twisting God’s word, his goal is to steal souls. The thief comes to steal, kill and destroy.

A thief spiritually represents Satan and his goal to destroy souls.

Now that these key words have been interpreted, the parable can be paraphrased, substituting the spiritual definition for the key words.

KJV Matthew 6:19-21
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.

A moth spiritually represents the loss of salvation.

A thief spiritually represents Satan and his goal to destroy souls.

Do not lay up treasures upon earth, where you will loose your salvation and Satan will destroy your soul. But lay up your treasures in Heaven, where you will not loose salvation and Satan will not destroy your soul. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

One Response to “Treasures Upon the Earth Matthew 6 Moth and Rust”

  1. Chumba Caleb said

    Thanks so much for the posts, are realy blessed. GOD’s grace continue being upon you.

    Like

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