Matthew 6:21 Meaning of Where Your Treasure Is

Matthew 6:21
“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Explanation and Commentary of Matthew 6:21

We are taught by Christ to store up treasure in heaven. Throughout the great Sermon on the Mount, he has taught about the heavenly reward that comes when we forgo the earthly reward of the recognition of others, whether it is for our prayers, our fasting, or our giving. Storing up treasure on earth falls into the same category. Men and women store up treasure so as to be admired by other men and women for this life. God is not impressed with our stuff. He will not reward us in heaven according to how well we rewarded ourselves on earth. If we used wealth to glorify him in the eyes of others, rather than ourselves, then we save our treasure and our glory for heaven.

Another way one might think of this is in the area of giving. To give away resources for the sake of God, whether it is to the poor, to missions, or to the church, is like depositing that money in an ultimate retirement account for eternal life. Indeed, it is a mystery as to how it works, how it transfers, what kind of interest is accrued but Jesus is clear that it is worthwhile to do it. If we invest much in something, that thing captures our hearts and our attention. The more we spend our treasure on an activity or a collection, or anything else, the more our heart will be located in that thing. There is nothing more valuable than heaven, where we will spend eternity with God and Christ and all the saints in the happy sinless state of restored creation.

Breaking Down the Key Parts of Matthew 6:21

#1 “For…”
In the previous verses, Jesus has warned against storing up treasure for oneself on earth, “where moths and vermin destroy, and thieves break in and steal” (Mt 6:19). We are not to work for temporary goods that can be lost. What we store up for heaven cannot be lost (Mt 6:20).

#2 “where your treasure is,”
The word, “treasure” is applied where something is greatly valued. Weighing the whole of Scripture, it seems that there is not anything wrong with owning something, or else God would not protect private ownership with commandments against stealing (Ex 20:15). But to treasure a thing is to love it with a love that should go to God alone. God has given us much to enjoy, but there should not be a single thing that you could not live without. To treasure something temporal is folly and will end in heartbreak. On the other hand, to love eternal things, beginning with God, is extremely wise. To exert effort and resources to those loves will bring not only true happiness on earth but in eternity as well.

#3 “there your heart will be also.”
It is clear from this that you can direct your heart by a decision about what to treasure. See earthly things rightly. Be content. Paul said, “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want” (Phil 4:11-12). If our hearts are in heaven because we have focused our treasure there, then whether we have need or are in plenty, we will be content. This is one aspect of having our treasure in heaven, our reward in heaven, and our hearts in heaven with God in Christ.

Expert Overview of Matthew Ch. 1-13

Biblical Translations of Matthew 6:21

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

“Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.”

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Matthew 6:21 Meaning and Commentary

Author Bio
Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Master's Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 18 years.