on Matthew 13 :44
The kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field - Θησαυρω κεκρυμμενω, 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.
on Matthew 13 :44
The kingdom of heaven - The gospel. The new dispensation. The offer of eternal life. See the notes at Matthew 3:2. The Saviour in this parable compares that kingdom to treasure hid in a field; that is, to money concealed; or more likely to a mine of silver or gold that was unknown to the owner of the field.
He hideth - That is, he conceals the fact that he has found it; he does not tell of it. With a view of obtaining this, Jesus says that a man would go and sell his property and buy the field. The conduct of the man would be dishonest. It would be his duty to inform the owner of the field of the discovery. He would be really endeavoring to gain property belonging to another at far less than its real value, and the principle of real integrity would require him to inform the owner of the discovery. But Christ does not intend to vindicate his conduct. He merely states the way in which people do "actually" manage to obtain wealth. He states a case where a man would actually "sacrifice his property," and practice diligence and watchfulness to obtain the wealth which he had discovered. The point of the parable lies in his "earnestness," his anxiety, his care, and his actually obtaining it. The gospel is more valuable than such a treasure, Psalm 19:10; Proverbs 3:13-15. It is hidden from most people. When a person sees it and hears it, it is his duty to sacrifice all that hinders his obtaining it, and to seek it with the earnestness with which other people seek for gold. The truth often lies buried: it is like rich veins of ore in the sacred Scriptures; it must be searched out with diligence, and its discovery will repay a man for all his sacrifices, Luke 14:33; Philippians 3:8.
on Matthew 13 :44
13:44 The three following parables are proposed, not to the multitude, but peculiarly to the apostles: the two former of them relate to those who receive the Gospel; the third, both to those who receive, and those who preach it. The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hid in a field - The kingdom of God within us is a treasure indeed, but a treasure hid from the world, and from the most wise and prudent in it. He that finds this treasure, (perhaps when he thought it far from him,) hides it deep in his heart, and gives up all other happiness for it.