The Hunt for Treasure will lead believers into a supernatural lifestyle of building Kingdom.
Witnessing to the love and saving grace of Jesus does not need to be invasive or argumentative. It is in the supernatural encounter where God reveals Himself in a specific way.
Where do you find treasure?
Everywhere there are people just waiting to be discovered.
People who desperately need a real encounter with God, not a sermon, not a tract telling them they're sinners, but a face to face encounter with Jesus through us — so they come to know God’s amazing love — personally for them. They are God's ultimate treasure.
The result is they will then be able to meet the overwhelming needs of their lives and often are released into the unfulfilled desires of their heart. That's got to be good!
Who and where is the Treasure?
Consider the parable of the Hidden Treasure - Matthew 13:44, the elements are:
- 1The Field
- 2The Treasure
- 3The Man
Some interpret the parable this way:
There are significant problems with the interpretation above.
- Man Finds the Treasure
- Man sells all
- Jesus not Hidden
The man finds the treasure. But the truth is, people don’t find Jesus, rather, He finds them. I know what you mean when you say you found Jesus, but in theological terms that’s not accurate. If you come to Him it’s only because He found you. He called you, and you simply heard His voice and answered His call. Luke 19:10 says; for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost (NKJV). Consider also when Adam sinned in the Garden. He hid himself, but God came looking for him.
The man sells all he has to purchase the field. If you pursue this argument it does not send the correct message, which is Salvation by Grace. It sounds more like salvation through works and good deeds. And the sad truth is, many still try to get Heaven just that way.
Jesus Christ is not a hidden treasure. Jesus is the most prominent, best known personality in the history of the world, He’s not a hidden treasure and He is certainly not hiding. He does not want it to be difficult to find Him. Jesus wants people to be saved far more than they themselves want to be saved, even if they choose to be!
An alternative interpretation
You could interpret the parable this way:
Jesus tells a parable that captures God’s heart for the Lost treasure (see Luke 15:8-10) Too often, Christians can look at the lost coins of the world as worthless, instead of viewing them as God does — as they are depicted in this parable.
It is so easy to think of the sinner as a lost cause and not worth seeking. It is true that those who are covered over in darkness are under every kind of evil and that the god of this age has darkened their understanding (see Ephesians 4:17), but that should not be a deterrent to uncovering the treasure that lies within.
Nowhere else in Scripture depicts all the angels rejoicing than here in the parable of the lost coin. If all Heaven is so excited over a Treasure Hunt then it must be a big deal in the Kingdom of God.
Jesus paid a great price, spending himself on purchasing these coins or these treasures. Therefore, just as we would go to great lengths in searching out collectables or antiques — so we should go to great lengths in locating one person. Why? Because they are God’s treasure.
Our Father in Heaven also celebrates the return of the lost — like the father who found his son in Luke 15:24 proclaimed; He was lost and is found.
Lost treasures are waiting to be found in every segment of society. The Book of Acts is a demonstration of God’s heart of not wanting anyone to perish (2 Peter 3:9). Throughout the book you see people being saved from every walk of life; governors, jail guards, religious terrorists, practitioners of witchcraft, the rich, the poor, servants and masters are all discover as treasures.
Time to ... Go
Each one of us is a treasure to God. If God’s heart is to find His lost treasures, then as we have His heart, we also have His passion.
Think of Ananias in Acts 9. Surely he’s the ultimate treasure hunter. Ananias is just an ordinary man. He was not an Apostle or Deacon. We’re told little about him apart from the fact he was in prayer when Jesus shows up in a vision to reveal the clues for a supernatural Treasure Hunt. Ananias was just like us. He didn’t feel equipped for the call and he said so. But you don’t have to be an extrovert nor indeed well trained in answering every possible question that might come up.
What Ananias was doing was spending time with God in the Secret Place. In the place of intimacy as he prayed — we don’t know what he was praying about, but we do know when Jesus turned up Ananias’ response in Acts 9:10 was simply Yes, Lord.
In Acts 9:10-18 Jesus says to Ananias in verse 11 Go. And really it’s time Christians left the building and went into the world to be witnesses.
If we consider Ananias, possibly an introverted intercessor, and during his prayer time Jesus turned up with the message Go. He also received further specific instructions (Acts 9:11). You might be tempted to think if the Lord showed up during your prayer time in such a way you would be out of the door and on your way filled with boldness and confidence to find your treasure. But not so.
Notice Jesus does not respond to Ananias’ fear. It is often the things we fear the most that sit on the threshold of our destiny. Father God did not give us a Spirit of timidity or fear, but a Spirit of power, love and of self-discipline (2 Timothy 1:7).
Now Ananias was afraid to go. There is only one way to break the fear and that is to Go which is Jesus’ instruction Acts 9:15-16. Jesus does not give in to Ananias’ hesitancy. He does not respond as many in church might today. Jesus does not say; Look I know your afraid and you lack confidence. I’ll find someone else to go on the Treasure Hunt. No. Jesus simply tells him again Go and you could get the feeling it is a kind of Go that carries the connotation; Don’t make me have to say it again!
So Ananias went following the clues and found a man named Saul. Ananias was not the ultimate Treasure Hunter because he was gifted — but because he went — because he was willing to go. By going he broke his fear and entered into his destiny.
I think most of us shy away from witnessing because, sadly, the only models we have seen, are either invasive or argumentative. None of us enjoy being accosted and bombarded with a sales pitch. Yet we are to be as the apostle Peter instructs us; Always to be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you and give the reason for the hope that you have. But to do it with gentleness and respect (1 Peter 3:15).
Some feel this is about having a well worked set of facts and arguments to justify your position. But it is by grace we are saved, through faith (Ephesians 2:8) not through debate.
Back to Ananias — when he turned up at Saul’s place with his clues and Treasure Map so to speak, I wonder what he expected. What we have come to understand, as we read the text, is that clearly Jesus had prepared Saul’s heart.
After Saul saw the light and heard Jesus’ voice on the road to Damascus, he was blind for 3 days and did not eat or drink anything. What was this all about? Was this perhaps symbolic of the lack of revelation he had of Jesus. Was He giving Saul a hunger, making him receptive. God had in a very real sense set Saul up.