A sermon idea based on Luke 12:32-40.
Luke 12:32-40 NRSV
 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.  Sell your possessions, and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys.  For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
 “Be dressed for action and have your lamps lit;  be like those who are waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet, so that they may open the door for him as soon as he comes and knocks.  Blessed are those slaves whom the master finds alert when he comes; truly I tell you, he will fasten his belt and have them sit down to eat, and he will come and serve them.  If he comes during the middle of the night, or near dawn, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves.
 “But know this: if the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into.  You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an unexpected hour.”
The relevant topic I would be addressing, based on this text…
Your heart can be fully invested in temporary, fleeting pursuits, or in the eternal kingdom of God. What you really love is always evidenced by how you choose to invest your life.
Information about the text that matters to the message…
Jesus utters, in verse 34, one of the greatest pieces of wisdom ever uttered. Wherever you invest your life, that’s where your affection will lie.
What is your “life?” I believe there are at least three aspects of life we have to invest and give away.
- Our time.
- Our energy.
- Our money.
What you do with your time, your energy, and your money is evidence of where your heart has been invested. And wherever you choose to invest your heart, that will become a priority in your attention and affection.
Jesus is calling us to treasure and value our relationship with God above all else. It is this relationship with God that will outlast anything we collect or accomplish on earth. And whatever we may invest into that relationship, and into other relationships (knowing that people are created to last forever as a heavenly family), will never waste away.
When Jesus speaks of the master serving the slaves, he is hinting at the upside-down nature of God’s kingdom. He’s inviting us into a kind of relationship in which he gives, rather than constantly taking. When you invest your time, energy, and money into earthly pursuits, those pursuits always demand more.
If you grew up, as I did, in a dispensational framework, you’ll likely see verses 39 and 40 as referring to the second coming of Christ. But consider, instead, that Jesus is likely referring to his first coming. The Jewish people believed that the Messiah would come in an unexpected time in an unexpected way. Jesus was essentially announcing his present ministry of opening the kingdom to all who would invest their lives into it.
The big call-to-action in the message…
We get to act on Jesus’ promise that whatever we invest of our time, money, and energy into relationships with God and with other people will outlast every other priority and pursuit of our life.
Hofheinz-Döring, Margret, 1910-. Sunrise, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN.