SOME LESSONS FROM THE RICH YOUNG RULER

Do we want to go to heaven more than anything else in this world? Jesus asked, “For what profit is it to a man, if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? (Matthew 16:26). Sometimes I have become so comfortable here on earth that I do not think about going home to be with God and His Son Jesus. I become too attached to stuff and things here on earth – and I am upset because I don’t have my comfort and my way. I have been trained by society and the media to want what I want and I want it right now. I have been coddled, and I get annoyed when things don’t go exactly the way I think they should go. I am too comfortable here on earth.
In Mark 10 Jesus met a rich young ruler who was the same way. He wanted to go to heaven, but he wasn’t willing to pay the price to get there! Consider some lessons that we need to be reminded of when we see his narrative in Scripture.
HE REFUSED TO BE SAVED BECAUSE OF THE “SECURITY” OF RICHES. He had what he needed down here, and to do what Jesus said meant having to give all of that up and trusting God. Beloved, sometimes we do put too much stock in our possessions and money, our IRAS and retirement; so that we think we are secure. But Job lost everything in the space of about an hour (Job 1). The foolish farmer of Luke 12:16-21 emphasizes that we may store up all kinds of wealth in this world, but die in a moment, and then whose shall it be? Beloved, we can’t take the things of this world with us when we die. 1 Timothy 6:7 says “For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.”
JESUS MADE A CLAIM – DO YOU THINK OF ME AS GOD? When the ruler said, “Good master. . .”, Jesus then asked “Who do you call me good. There is only one good, that is God.” By saying this Jesus was telling the young man that he (Jesus) had the right and authority to tell the man what to do when it come to making preparations for his soul. Jesus has all authority today (Matthew 28:18) and does have the right to tell us what to do and how to live to go to heaven. Submission to the authority of Jesus is vital.
IT IS HARD FOR THOSE WHO HAVE EARTHLY TREASURE TO ENTER THE KINGDOM! Why? Those who have earthly treasures have a tendency to trust them to much. Jesus makes the statement that it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter heaven. Much discussion in commentaries has been made as to what exactly Jesus meant by that – one of the basic things I remember learning is take we need to take the Bible at face value first, unless something else may be meant from the surrounding context. How hard is it for a huge animal like a camel to go through the eye of a needle? How hard is it for a rich man to enter heaven.
THE DISCIPLES WERE ASTONISHED. Americans are astonished that Jesus would make such a statement – yet Jesus has called upon us to leave all and follow Him. Leave all – family, security, whatever may get in the way of serving God – and trust God with it all.
GOD, AND ONLY GOD, CAN SAVE! Our riches will not save us. Our government will not save us. Our jobs, our recreation, our _________ will not save us. Only God can save us, and it is thus important that we make sure we get this right above everything else.
WILL HEAVEN BE WORTH IT? You bet! We will be blessed beyond belief later by leaving it all now and offering at the feet of Jesus. Is this a gamble? A calculated risk? Of faith in GOD who will not lie or fail in his faithfulness to his promises! There’s the rub. Do we (I) have that kind of faith in God?
The rich young ruler went away sorrowfully. Will we walk away from Jesus sorrowfully, or give it all to live a life of adventure and faith in God? What is my choice? What is your choice?

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About tommytidwell

I am a Christian, a husband of 36 years, and a father of three wonderful sons. I am a granddad (Pawpaw) (X6 with one on the way), and my grandsons and granddaughters are the greatest. I serve as a preacher for the church of Christ; which I truly consider to be a privilege of which I am so unworthy. I serve the Lord at the South Cobb church of Christ near Atlanta, GA.
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