Gaining Mastery Over Mammon

Matthew 6:19-24


A. In writing to Timothy, Paul described the danger of seeking
to be rich…

1. The desire to be rich is filled with temptations which have
destroyed many – 1 Timothy 6:9

2. The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil which have
led many astray – 1 Timothy 6:10

B. Jesus also described the difficulty of the rich entering
the kingdom of heaven…

1. When the rich young ruler asked concerning eternal life
(Mt. 19: 16-22)

2. Jesus said it was difficult, but not impossible (Mt. 19:23-

C. In Mat. 6:19-24, Jesus taught how it was possible…

1. For the rich person to have “treasure in heaven”

2. For us to overcome “mammon”, which can easily enslave

D. Mammon has reference to treasure or wealth (Lk. 16:
9-11)  –  By personification, the god of riches
(Mt. 6:24)

E. Thus, if not careful, wealth and riches can become
our “god”…

1. Paul called a covetous person an idolater – Ephesians

2. He told the Colossians to put to death “covetousness,
which is idolatry” – Colossians 3:5

F. To prevent Mammon from become our “god”, let’s examine
the teachings of our Lord as found in His sermon on the
mount. Beginning with Matthew 6:19, we find the first of
three keys to “Gaining Mastery Over Mammon”…


Matthew 6:19-21

1. Why in heaven, and not on earth…

a. On earth: Moth and rust destroy (material things are
perishable), and thieves break in and steal (material
things are subject to theft)

b. In heaven: Neither moth nor rust destroys (our treasures
are imperishable – 1 Pt. 1:3-4) , and thieves do not break
in and steal (our treasures are securely guarded – 1 Pt.

2. Where your treasure is, there your “heart” (affections,
hope, dreams) will be also…

a. If your treasure is on earth, your heart will
experience much disappointment

1) As things for which you have affection decay or are
one day destroyed by fire

2) As things in which you find your primary joy are
suddenly gone through things like theft

b. But if your treasure is in heaven, your heart will not
suffer great disappointments

1) For your treasure is “incorruptible, undefiled, and does
not fade away”

2) Nothing can take your treasure away from you – it is

a) “reserved in heaven for you”

b) “kept by the power of God through faith”

c. With treasures laid up in heaven, whatever happens
on earth will not devastate you!  Compare the Hebrew
Christians – Hebrews 10:32-34

d. When these words of Jesus are taken to heart and
applied, how true His words in Matthew 7:24-27 will be

1) The “storms” of life will not overwhelm us

2) Because we’ve built our foundation upon the words of
Jesus found in our text!

3. How can we lay up treasure in heaven?

a. First, by becoming children of God…

1) Thereby becoming “joint-heirs with Christ” (Rom.

2) And the recipients of “every spiritual blessing” in
heavenly places (Eph. 1:13)

b. Then, by using material wealth we may have to bless
those around us…

1) As Jesus instructed the rich young ruler –
Matthew 19:21

2) As He instructed His disciples, in order to have
“a treasure in the heavens that does not fail” – Luke

3) 1 Timothy 6:17-19

c. Through such generosity and liberality, then, we are well
on the way to “Gaining Mastery Over Mammon.” At the
same time, we need to make sure that we observe the
second key…

B. KEEP YOUR EYE GOOD – Matthew 6:22-23

1. In the metaphor used by Jesus …

a. The “body” likely represents the “soul” or “inner man”

b. The “eye” likely represents the “gaze of the soul” or the
“heart of man”

c. The word “good” in Greek means “simple, single,

d. The word “bad” in Greek means “wicked, evil”

e. And in the Scriptures, the expression “evil eye” is used
to mean “envious, covetous”

1) Proverbs 23:6

2) Matthew 20:15

3) Mark 7:22

2. An explanation based upon these definitions …

a. If the heart or gaze of the soul be “good” (“single” in
its love of God and the things of God)…

1) Then one is filled with “light”

2) In other words, goodness, righteousness, and truth

3) Ephesians 5:8-10

b. But if the heart or gaze of the soul be “evil” (full of
envy, covetousness)…

1) Then one’s soul is filled with “darkness”

2) The opposite of light: selfishness, wickedness, and

3. Thus the need for the warning…

a. To guard what goes in your eye

1) That is, what you allow your eyes to dwell upon

2) Remember, there is such a thing as “the lusts of the
eyes” (i.e., materialism)

b. To be rich toward God, free from covetousness

1) Note Jesus’ warning – Luke 12:15

2) Also His conclusion – Luke 12:21

4. The third and last key to “Gaining Mastery Over
Mammon” is most crucial, and will make it impossible for
one to serve Mammon…

C. MAKE GOD YOUR MASTER – Matthew 6:24

1. No one can serve two masters…

a. A “master” by definition demands “total loyalty”, and we
are unable to please two masters at the same time

b. Such is certainly true with God – Exodus 34:14

c. Mammon is evidently no different

2. We have to choose between God and mammon…

a. When wealth is coveted, and becomes the priority in our
lives, it becomes a “god”

b. Covetousness is idolatry (Col. 3:5)

c. So the choice becomes one as to whether we shall
worship the One True God, or be “idolaters” following
after a false god!

3. Choose to serve God…

a. As Jesus would later say, “Seek first the kingdom of God
and His righteousness” (Mt. 6:33)

b. Do this, and God becomes our Master

c. Since we can’t serve two masters, this effectively
eliminates Mammon from being our “god”!


A. These are the three keys to “Gaining Mastery Over

B. Why should we seek to gain mastery over mammon and
serve God instead?

1. Because Mammon…

2. Whereas with God…


About from the Preachers PC

Gospel Preacher for the Park Heights church of Christ in Hamilton, TX. I stand for and defend the truth of God's word. All other degrees and diplomas mean very little in comparison.
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