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A Timeless Principle on Treasure Hunting

Friday, June 28, 2024 @ 08:23 AM A Timeless Principle on Treasure Hunting Joy Lucius The Stand Writer MORE

At our church, we’ve been doing a Wednesday-night Bible study from Randy Alcorn called The Treasure Principle for the past six weeks. It is not a new study, but it is probably one of the most solid, truth-filled studies I have ever experienced in a congregational setting.

This small book, measuring 6.5 X 4.75 inches, packs a powerful punch. Our church is using it in conjunction with The Treasure Principle Bible Study by Alcorn and Brian Smith, and we’ve been humbled, challenged, and inspired to become true stewards of the treasures God has given us.

To be honest, I am a huge fan of Alcorn; I always have been. But until last year, it was his fictional stories that had me hooked.

But after the death of our son last summer, I came upon a used copy of Alcorn’s best-selling non-fictional work called Heaven. Talk about a gift straight from God! I am not sure how I would have navigated this past year without his biblical insight into life after death.

Now, I am an avid reader – and a bit of a speed reader, at that. But there was no way I could have read Heaven quickly, especially considering its length. But even beyond the actual amount of material covered in its over 500 pages, it was the depth of the material that led me to slow down and read (and reread multiple times) every few pages.

I would cry for a while and read for a while. Then, I would get out my Bible and search to find the countless scriptures Alcorn highlighted to reference each comment on our heavenly home. He used the Bible to show me things I had never even considered about heaven, and in the process, God offered me His hope over and over and over again.

And that life-altering experience is what led me to search for some other treasure troves of Alcorn’s non-fictional, biblical-based wisdom.

But the funniest thing was when I looked on our bookshelves here at work for some other research writing materials, and I saw not one, but two copies of The Treasure Principle and its accompanying study guide.  

Needless to say, I took them home and devoured the little book in only one night. Then, I read through the study guide over the next few nights, and I reread The Treasure Principle one more time for good measure.

I was in awe that such a simple principle could be so impactful, even after spending my entire life as a churchgoer. So, I did what every good reader does, I shared it with other people – including my pastor. And so began our church’s journey into learning about true stewardship.

Now, I have no trouble with the principle of tithing, and I love giving to other people. In fact, it is kind of a running joke in our family that if someone gives me something of value, that person better stipulate that if (or when) I randomly feel the urge to give it away to an arbitrary stranger, I call the gift’s original giver first.

So, tithing and giving were not the big issues for me with this book. It was the idea of seeking for real treasure and then surrendering it completely to the greatest treasure of all, Jesus Christ.

Maybe my heart was just so ripe for this word with one of my greatest life’s treasures having recently gone home to heaven. Or maybe, I am finally old enough to realize that stuff is just that – stuff.

Who knows! Whatever the case, I have thoroughly enjoyed our corporate Bible study of stewardship via The Treasure Principle.

I especially love how Alcorn breaks down each chapter’s lesson into one or two dynamic key nuggets of stark truth. For example, this week’s key lesson reminded us that God does not bless us to raise our standard of living. Instead, He blesses us to raise our standard of giving.

Raising our standard of giving. Wow!

I read ahead through next week’s lesson, and I think this upcoming lesson may be the most powerful of all. To begin it, Alcorn tells the story of Alfred Nobel, the Swedish chemist who invented dynamite. His life’s fortune established and still funds the Nobel Prize Foundation.

But in 1888, Alfred’s brother Ludvig died in France, and the newspaper inadvertently ran an obituary for Alfred rather than his dead brother.

It was a watershed moment for Alfred Nobel.

After reading his own obituary, he realized that he wanted his life to have meaning and purpose above and beyond his scientific achievements or his massive bank account.

In essence, he began to search for real treasure.

So have I.

As Alcorn so aptly teaches, the surest place to find that treasure is in Christ, and the safest place to place all other treasures is in His hands.

But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also (Matthew 6:20-21, KJV).

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