The kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field - , to a hidden treasure. We are not to imagine that the treasure here mentioned, and to which the Gospel salvation is likened, means a pot or chest of money hidden in the field, but rather a gold or silver mine, which he who found out could not get at, or work, without turning up the field, and for this purpose he bought it. Mr. Wakefield' s observation is very just: "There is no sense in the purchase of a field for a pot of money, which he might have carried away with him very readily, and as honestly, too, as by overreaching the owner by an unjust purchase."
He hideth - i.e. he kept secret, told the discovery to no person, till he had bought the field. From this view of the subject, the translation of this verse, given above, will appear proper - a hidden treasure, when applied to a rich mine, is more proper than a treasure hid, which applies better to a pot of money deposited there, which I suppose was our translators' opinion; and kept secret, or concealed, will apply better to the subject of his discovery till he made the purchase, than hideth, for which there could be no occasion, when the pot was already hidden, and the place known only to himself.
Our Lord' s meaning seems to be this: - The kingdom of heaven - the salvation provided by the Gospel - is like a treasure - something of inestimable worth - hidden in a field; it is a rich mine, the veins of which run in all directions in the sacred Scriptures; therefore, the field must be dug up, the records of salvation diligently and carefully turned over, and searched. Which, when a man hath found - when a sinner is convinced that the promise of life eternal is to him, he kept secret - pondered the matter deeply in his heart; he examines the preciousness of the treasure, and counts the cost of purchase; for joy thereof - finding that this salvation is just what his needy soul requires, and what will make him presently and eternally happy, went and sold all that he had - renounces his sins, abandons his evil companions, and relinquishes all hope of salvation through his own righteousness; and purchased that field - not merely bought the book for the sake of the salvation it described, but, by the blood of the covenant, buys gold tried in the fire, white raiment, etc.; in a word, pardon and purity, which he receives from God for the sake of Jesus. We should consider the salvation of God,
1.As our only treasure, and value it above all the riches in the world.
2.Search for it in the Scriptures, till we fully understand its worth and excellence.
3.Deeply ponder it in the secret of our souls.
4.Part with all we have in order to get it.
5.Place our whole joy and felicity in it; and
6.Be always convinced that it must be bought, and that no price is accepted for it but the blood of the covenant; the sufferings and death of our only Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
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