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Matthew 13:52: Treasure New and Old

Posted by adventbiblestudy on January 24, 2012


Matthew 13:52 MKJV Then He said to them, Therefore every scribe who is instructed to the kingdom of Heaven is like a man who is a householder, who brings out things new and old out of his treasure.

 

Jesus had been teaching His disciples through parables for hours, although it felt like only a few minutes had passed. He told them the parable of the sower, and explained how the gift of understanding had been given to them. This was a gift many before them had prayed and searched for. Jesus explained the parable in great detail, impressing the lessons upon their minds with the use of simple, everyday items to illustrate spiritual lessons. The minds of His disciples had been opened, and their hearts were guided by God’s Spirit. Their thoughts directed them to a number of texts Jesus had been praying they would now understand. A new life, a deeper understanding was opening up to them. This was more than a lesson Jesus was teaching, it was a fulfillment of prophecy.

Jesus also taught them the parable of the wheat and tares. Jesus wanted them to see just how far reaching their ministry will grow with the seeds they would plant through the guidance of the Holy Spirit. To illustrate how far their simple ministries would reach, He taught them the parable of the mustard seed.

After the crowds left, Jesus and His disciples went into Peters house. There His disciples asked Him to explain the parable of the wheat and tares. In this parable the disciples were shown the struggle taking place, but seldom noticed by most people. They began to realize how we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (Ephesians 6:12 KJV).

There was so much to teach, and so little time. One of the most important lessons to learn was their role in the plan of salvation. This was revealed in the parables Jesus taught about a man who found treasure in a field, the pearl of great price, and the net which brought in good and bad fish. In these the disciples learned the need for prayer, trusting the Holy Spirit to reveal God’s plan, and cooperation between fellow believers. Each essential elements in God’s plan of salvation.

Jesus paused for quite some time. He wanted to give His disciples time to digest the spiritual food He had already given them while dinner was being served. After blessing the food, Jesus in His usual fashion took the bread, broke it in pieces, and passed it around the table. Then He said to them, “Therefore every scribe who is instructed to the kingdom of Heaven is like a man who is a householder, who brings out things new and old out of his treasure.”

All of His disciples considered this a most unusual parable. Some of them had already considered writing about the things Jesus taught about the Kingdom of Heaven. They considered this a great responsibility and thought this parable had been directed at them. They asked themselves the question, what did they, a scribe instructed in the Kingdom of Heaven have in common with the head of a household? They thought, the head of the household is meant to be the priest of the family.

Jesus could tell His disciples were deep in thought. Meals were usually filled with conversation, this evening, was different. Jesus gazed at each of His disciples, the orange glow from the light of the oil lamps dancing throughout the room, accentuating the lines of wisdom and experience etched into each face. He focused on the depth of their thoughts in their eyes where the reflection of the flame from the lamp was like looking into their soul. Jesus read the passion deep within their souls. Many ideas went through their minds, but nothing seemed to answer the question. Each of them went onto the second part of the parable in their own time. What could a home owner bring out of his house that would help to explain the Kingdom of Heaven?

Jesus smiled as He watched their eyes going from room to room. Some of the disciples gazed upon the table wondering if the table as a whole represented Heaven, or was it a single item? Others studied other rooms, the kitchen, bedroom, and living area. Not a single item in any of the rooms seemed to be able to explain Heaven the way Jesus did. Was that the answer? Was it Jesus? Was He the new Treasure a man will take out of a house to show others a true vision of Heaven?

The answer seemed so plain, so simple. Where else would anyone learn about Heaven? Who better to learn from than the Son of God?

This seemed to be the only answer that made sense, perfect sense. As they thought about how and what Jesus taught, each one was influenced by a different scene they had witnessed, or been told about.

Matthew thought about a story he had been told about Jesus when He was a young child. Three wise men traveled a great distance over many months, visiting Him in His house to honor Him with treasures of gold, and frankincense, and myrrh. (Matthew 2:10-11) Matthew thought about Jesus coming out of the house, helping everyone He met, and telling them stories about the Kingdom of Heaven like they have never heard before. Truly Jesus is the new treasure.

John thought about Jesus’ sermon on the mountain. His mind focused on one particular line Jesus spoke, “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand. And it gives light to all who are in the houseLet your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in Heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16 MKJV).

John thought about bringing Jesus out of a house as the light to the world. To John this was the answer to the parable. It made John think, Jesus’ followers are the light of the world. The light they carry is God’s Word. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men.” (John 1:1-4 KJV)

Looking at the walls of the house, Luke’s mind rested upon another parable Jesus told. “He is like a man who built a house and dug deep and laid the foundation on a rock; and a flood occurring, the stream burst against that house and could not shake it; for it was founded on a rock.” (Luke 6:48 MKJV)

Luke also thought about the Rock that followed Moses and the Israelites as he wondered through the wilderness. He could see the connection between Jesus’ care for those around Him, and how the Rock provided for Israel’s greatest needs. “And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.” (1 Corinthians 10:4 KJV). As he thought about this, John could see how a wise man will build his life upon the loving and caring ways of Jesus. This was what every man could take out of his house to teach the world about Heaven.

Peter of course thought about the time Jesus visited his house and healed his mother in law. And He touched her hand, and the fever left her. And she arose and served them. And evening coming on, they brought to Him many who had been possessed with demons. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick so that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying, “He took on Himself our weaknesses and bore our sicknesses.” (Matthew 8:15-17 MKJV).

Peter was beginning to see and understand the prophecies Jesus had been fulfilling. He could see how he may one day teach others about Jesus, and the prophecies He fulfilled. This is what kept him so close to Jesus. Everyday he was amazed not only by the miracles, but the words Jesus spoke. Peter was most impressed when Jesus revealed the prophecies He was fulfilling. Peter wished he had access to the scriptures and the time to study them in more detail.

James focused on the exciting and tight places they found themselves in. He remembered one particular time when Jesus and His disciples dined in a crowded home when pieces of the roof began falling on the table. Four men lowered a paralyzed man on a bed down into the house. Among the guests were a number of Pharisees. To make a point, Jesus asked them, “For which is easier? To say, Your sins are forgiven you, or to say, Arise and walk! But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins,” then He said to the paralytic, “Arise, take up your bed and go to your house.” And he arose and departed to his house. (Matthew 9:5-7 MKJV).

James could see the connection between the faith the man needed to be healed, and the work Jesus performed. This put him into deeper thought, contemplating the spiritual connection between physical disease and sin, Jesus often illustrated in His parables.

One account all the disciples remembered was the time Jesus visited a young ruler’s house. They remembered how he came to Jesus, and pleaded with Him to come and cure his daughter. They also remembered the interruptions encountered along the way, and how the look of desperation increased in his eyes as time slipped away. They thought they would never forget the look on the man’s face when he was told his daughter died, or how Jesus tried to comfort him in his hour of need. That was nothing compared to when Jesus came into the ruler’s house, and saw the minstrels and the people making a noise, He said to them, “Go back, for the little girl is not dead, but sleeps.” And they laughed Him to scorn. But when the people were put out, He went in and took her by the hand, and the little girl arose. (Matthew 9:24-25 MKJV)

What would the light, words, deeds, miracles, and forgiveness accomplish without the resurrection? Their minds filled with the awesome wonder of God as each in his own mind praised the Lord by meditating on His power over death, and relating this to His power of creation. Each one of His disciples reached a new level of love, respect, and knowledge for their Teacher, Friend, and Saviour, freely giving of His time to heal, physical and spiritual pain.

Each of His disciples have seen this power in their own lives only a few weeks before when Jesus commanded them to, “go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at handHeal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.” (Matthew 10:6-8).

It was plain to see, they were the scribes instructed in the Kingdom of Heaven by the Son of God. Jesus was the New Treasure they were to take out of the home they were now in, and share it with the world. This parable marked a new beginning. What about the old? What old treasure in the house represents the Kingdom of Heaven? Once again they began gazing from room to room, item to item. Jesus noticing their eyes wondering and knew they were searching for the answer. All eyes were on Jesus as He quietly rose from the table, took an oil lamp in His hand, went to the door and opened it. It took only a second for each of them to discover the answer as the light from the lamp lite up the words of the commandments inscribed upon the door posts. Every mind pondered the inspired words spoken by God’s voice, and given on tablets of stone through Moses.

And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words which I command you this day shall be in your heart. And you shall carefully teach them to your sons, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise up. And you shall bind them for a sign upon your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. And you shall write them upon the posts of your house, and on your gates. (Deuteronomy 6:5-9 MKJV)

The old treasure is the commandments. The parable was so plain and simple. It is true, it did turn out exactly as Jesus had told them. “It is given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of Heaven. Blessed are your eyes, for they see; and your ears, for they hear. For truly I say to you that many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which you see, and have not seen them; and to hear what you hear, and have not heard them.” (Matthew 13:11, 16-17 MKJV)

 

The plan of salvation includes all of Jesus’ followers. We are all disciples given spiritual gifts. Each one is different. One is no greater than the other. Each gift is designed and provided to lead someone to Christ. Jesus sends His disciples out into the world to preach the Kingdom of Heaven. This is the new treasure we take out of our homes to share with the world when the old treasure is written in our hearts. “And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit within you. And I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh. And I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My judgments and do them.” (Ezekiel 36:26-27 MKJV)

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