Chapter # 6 Paragraph # 5 Study # 32
Thesis: The "treasure" of the heart is determined by one fundamental principle: faith.
Introduction: In Jesus' use of the good tree/bad tree analogy, He made two comments that are absolutely crucial. The first is that "they" gather/pick (NASB) fruit according to what they "know". The second is that, when the analogy is applied to men, the "knowing" has to arise from listening to the casual speech, not the "doctrinal" speech.
This morning we are going to focus upon these two critical declarations.
June 8, 2008
- I. Accumulating Treasure According to Knowledge.
- A. In the analogy, Jesus declares that there is a correlation between "fruit harvesters" and "people".
- 1. This correlation assumes that "people" and "fruit harvesters" both have sufficient motivation to "gather/pick".
- 2. Though there are other factors, the correlation exists at one basic point: everyone "gathers/picks" according to someone's definition of "good".
- B. In the analogy, Jesus begins at a most basic level of "knowledge".
- 1. His analogy assumes a certain level of understanding, but it is pretty basic.
- a. There are "people" whose level of ignorance is so great that they would do what Jesus says "they" do not do.
- 1) No one comes into the world with enough "understanding" to be able to act by knowledge.
- 2) Anyone who would not do what Jesus says they would not do has already been "schooled" by a sufficient amount of experience.
- b. The "level" of Jesus' analogy is that no "gatherer" goes to a thorn bush looking for figs or to a bramble looking for grapes.
- 2. His analogy, though allowing for the possibility of progression in the skills of "gathering/picking", means that once the very basics are in place, everyone is in the "hunt".
- a. There are several "truisms" involved.
- 1) Once a person begins to "live", there is no escape from "motivations".
- 2) Once a person begins to "act", there is no escape from "downline harvesting".
- 3) Once the "downline harvesting" gets to "critical mass", "eternal fixing" takes place.
- b. All day, every day, everyone is "picking fruit".
- C. In the analogy, the issue is the accumulation of treasure.
- 1. Without dispute, there is "treasure" and there is "delusion".
- a. The "treasure of the heart" of the "good" man is real treasure.
- b. The "treasure of the heart" of the "evil" man is a massive delusion.
- 2. Also without dispute is the fact that the longer delusions remain in place the more they look like "truth".
- 3. And without dispute is a third fact: everyone is looking for the same "end" but not by the same "means".
- a. There are four critical realities in God's revelation: value, truth, the knowledge that makes discernment possible, and finality in judgment.
- b. Everyone is looking for the "joy of Life" but the vast majority of "fruit pickers" are looking on the thorn bushes and bramble vines.
- II. Using Discernment in the Search for Help.
- A. Jesus declared without hesitation that everyone "gathers/picks" according to someone's definition of "good".
- B. Since only an idiot thinks that he is adequate in himself to know what is "good", there is a serious need for "help".
- C. Given the need for "help", there is a massive question "out there": Who is able to help me without leading me astray?
- 1. Jesus' answer to this question is "the good man" who brings forth out of the good treasure of his heart.
- 2. Jesus' caution: there are "evil men" who also bring forth out of the evil treasure of their hearts and they are both abundant and aggressive.
- D. Given that question, there is another major problem: How do I tell who is "good" and who is "evil"?
- 1. Jesus' answer to this question is subtle.
- 2. Jesus' answer to this question has two major parts.
- a. The first part is the determination of what is "evil".
- 1) Jesus addressed this exhaustively.
- 2) Jesus said that "evil" exists in the idolatry of seeking status, wealth, and physical pleasure.
- b. The second part is "listening" to those who would "help".
- 1) Here is where the subtlety exists.
- 2) Jesus did not say "listen to their sermons with a careful ear" to see what their "official doctrine" is.
- 3) Jesus said "listen to their casual speech" because that is where the true treasure of the heart is revealed.