Get out your concordance, open your Bible app, or click on the icon for your computer’s Bible program. Search the New Testament for the word, “treasure,” and you will find a most insightful truth. Of the 18 occurrences, there is only one which speaks in a positive manner about anything material, here on earth, being a treasure. That single reference is in Matthew 2:11 where Magi opened their treasures and gave them in worship to the Lord Jesus. The Spirit of God is perhaps revealing, in this way, a number of lessons for us to learn. Note that they were:
Obtained at Great Cost
Gold, frankincense, and myrrh would be costly gifts to bring. Time, effort, and preparation would be needed to obtain and arrange gifts of this nature. The treasures, when opened, were part of their worship of the One Whom they had come to see.
How valuable is what we bring on a Lord’s day? How much preparation of heart do we do in light of the privilege of remembering the Lord? Worship is not limited to the Breaking of Bread; but it is an opportunity for collective worship, worship which fuels each others’ appreciation for Christ.
We should not need a hymn to “pump up” our worship or get us thinking of Christ. We should come with treasures prepared to offer to Him. It will mean preparation, which always means sacrifice of time.
Offered To Him Alone
The very same gifts were in their possession when they visited the court of Herod in Jerusalem, but he was not worthy. Not a word is spoken in the narrative about treasures until they are in the house. The gifts were there when they saw the parents, Joseph and Mary; but they were not deserving though righteous. They had prepared their treasures to give to Him alone.
The treasures in their bags would not have been treasures had they not been offered to Him. Whatever may have been the mercantile value of those treasures, it was multiplied when offered to Him.
Owned by God as Valuable
Note the words which the Spirit of God brings together in these verses: “treasures,” “gifts,” and an “offering” (“presented” is used in Hebrews for “offering”). God was placing His estimate upon what they had brought. As a treasure, He was owning its worth; as a gift, its voluntary presentation; as an offering, something which was costly and fragrant to Him.
An Opportunity for Us
An appreciation of the value God placed upon their gifts should stir us to become better worshipers, coming with gifts worthy of a King. Both brethren and sisters should come with hearts filled with worship. We do not come with “sermon-prayers,” but with Spirit-filled hearts. God hears it and esteems it as a “treasure.”
Likewise, to realize that my material possessions, when placed at His disposal as an act of worship, escalate by heaven’s value system. My home, car, money, and all I have can become “offerings,” when used for Him. My faculties such as time, intelligence, and skills, can all appreciate in value when placed at His feet in worship.
“When they saw the star they rejoiced … when … they saw the young child … they worshipped” (Matt 2:11). Life has wonderful experiences, maybe even bright stars, but He alone is worthy of worship.