Christ is the greatest treasure that anyone can find in this world, and all who seek him find him, and all who find him find far more than they ever imagined.
One of the saddest headlines of 2017 was Man hunting treasure found dead in New Mexico. It was made all the sadder by the fact that the dead man was a pastor from Colorado who died in search of hidden treasure worth $2m that had been hidden in the Rocky Mountains by millionaire Forrest Fenn. Fenn hid the chest in 2010 and wrote a poem he claimed led to the treasure. Since then, over 65,000 people have searched the area in New Mexico for the 22lb bronze chest containing gold and jewels with many suffering injury as they traversed the dangerous topography. And still no treasure has been found.
Join me on a treasure hunt that results in life not death, and that will produce true riches for every treasure hunter. In Christ are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Col. 2:3).
To help us find this treasure, God has provided a map called the Bible which is:
Accurate: Because God is the ultimate author of the Bible, it is 100% accurate both in its Old and New Testament versions.
Accessible: God has made it available in hundreds of different languages.
Varied: Some parts are history, some poetry. Some parts are songs, some laws. Some parts look forward, some parts look backwards. Some parts are close ups, some are birds-eye view. There’s something for everyone here.
If you haven’t found the treasure yet, don’t blame the map.
The Treasure Hunter
So, if the map is so good, why haven’t more people found the treasure? Because the treasure hunters have many problems:
Disabilities: They are spiritually blind, deaf, and lame.
Confused: They don’t really know what they are looking for.
Distracted: They are easily diverted by the cares of this world and other minor matters.
Dying: The treasure hunters are dying but don’t usually appreciate how limited their time is and how urgent the hunt is
As the Colorado pastor found out, treasure hunting comes with many dangers. In this case, the dangers include:
False maps: False religions, false science, false philosophies, false psychologies, and many other falsehoods attack God’s map and substitute their own.
False promises: Many pleasures promise happiness and satisfaction if we dig into them. Gamblers put a big “X marks the spot” over casinos. Other X’s can be found on alcohol, sex, money, popularity, and so on. But all who have tried to dig in these places have only come up with dust no matter how deep they’ve dug.
A prowling lion: The devil goes about as a roaring lion whose full-time job is to divert you or kill you before you find the treasure (1 Pet. 5:8).
Given the dangers, is this treasure hunt worth even trying?
Thankfully, God offers many helps and clues to overcome the dangers, such as:
His promises: “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him” (James 1:5)
His people: Most treasure hunters want the treasure for themselves and don’t want anyone else to find it or get any of it. But Christians who have found the treasure of Christ desperately want to help others find it and enjoy it too. Sharing this treasure actually multiplies it.
His treasure seminars: He offers weekly seminars where expert treasure hunters explain the map and offer direction and guidance to motivate and guide.
There are so many valuable helps that if you haven’t yet found the treasure it’s only because you haven’t really looked for it yet. “Seek and you shall find” (Matt. 7:7).
So, what is the treasure? It is knowledge and wisdom about:
God: Christ is the image of God, so much so that he who has seen Christ has seen God (John 14:9)
Yourself: Christ reveals your sinful heart and your spiritual need.
The Cross: Christ makes sense of the cross and shows how although some call it weakness and foolishness, it is actually the power and wisdom of God (1 Cor. 1:18)
Life: Christ sets before us a wise life, the best way to live.
The World: Christ gives a new worldview, a new way of looking at the world’s history, people, ways, and purpose.
The Future: Christ gives knowledge of what happens after death and how to prepare for the judgment in such a way that we go to heaven rather than hell.
This and so much more demonstrates why in Christ are hidden all the riches of wisdom and knowledge. All that is valuable, precious, useful, is found in him. He is an unsearchable, inexhaustible, unfathomable treasure chest.
“Hidden in Christ” does not mean that God wants to make it hard to unearth this golden wisdom. So what does it mean?
You have to dig: You have to go out of your way to seek it and get it. It’s not going to just land on your lap. Faith in Christ is the spade with which we dig and by which we discover more and more spiritual knowledge and wisdom.
You don’t get the wisdom and knowledge without Christ. You don’t get the treasure without the treasure chest.
You will be surprised: There’s so much more in him than we can ever imagine. No matter how long we have been digging, there will be more to discover. Ahead lie years of unpacking and discovering new jewels of knowledge, and gold of grace in unlimited supply.
No one has ever truly hunted for this treasure and failed to find it. And all who have found it have exclaimed: “I did not believe the words until I came and saw with my own eyes; and indeed the half was not told me. Your wisdom and prosperity exceed the fame of which I heard” ( 1 Kings 10:7).