Whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.
The parables of the treasure and the pearl in Matthew 13 are both about the value of the kingdom of heaven. Jesus was saying, “When you find the gospel, you need to do whatever is necessary to obtain that treasure of eternal life.” But there is one significant difference in these parables.
In the first parable, the man got up that day with no thought of getting rich, and he was on his way to work when he stumbled across a treasure. This man represents the person who stumbles upon the gospel message. I think of the woman at the well in John 4. One morning, she went to the well of Jacob, and she just happened to run into Jesus Christ. The Bible says even though the woman went looking for a bucket of water, she left having received the everlasting water of eternal life.
If you are a Christian, you might have a similar story of how you came to Christ. You were not searching for Christ; you stumbled across Him. Perhaps you just happened to turn on a particular television program, or you sat next to somebody on an airplane who shared the gospel with you. When you heard the gospel, it quenched your thirst inside and you immediately embraced it.
The first man accidentally stumbled upon the treasure, but the man in the second parable had been searching all his life for a pearl of great value. This represents a person who has been looking for God for a long time. He has tried all kinds of religions and rituals, but nothing has satisfied him. I think about Cornelius the Roman centurion in Acts 10. He loved God, but he did not know Jesus Christ. So one day Cornelius prayed, “God, please reveal Yourself to me.” What did God do? He answered Cornelius’s prayer by sending Peter to share the gospel with him. As soon as Cornelius heard it, he believed. He embraced the gospel after a long search for God.
Maybe that story is more like yours. Perhaps you tried various ways to reach God, but one day you heard that God has already provided the only way of salvation by sending His Son to die for you. And as soon as you heard that message, you embraced it.
Some people stumble upon the gospel; others find it after a long search for God. However you find the gospel, Jesus said, you need to recognize its value and do whatever is necessary to make it yours.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “The Treasure And The Pearl” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2005.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org