Friday, September 12, 2008

The Rich Young Man

The Rich Young Man (Matt 19:16-26 ESV)

And behold, a man came up to him, saying, "Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life?"

And he said to him, "Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good.

If you would enter life, keep the commandments."

He said to him, "Which ones?"

And Jesus said, "You shall not murder, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother, and, You shall love your neighbor as yourself."

The young man said to him, "All these I have kept. What do I still lack?"

Jesus said to him, "If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me."

When the young man heard this he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.

And Jesus said to his disciples, "Truly, I say to you, only with difficulty will a rich person enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God."

When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished, saying, "Who then can be saved?"

But Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."

Then Peter said in reply, "See, we have left everything and followed you. What then will we have?"

Jesus said to them, "Truly, I say to you, in the new world, when the Son of Man will sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.

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While in prison this past weekend, I met several people who thought that they must do 'good deeds' to have eternal life in Heaven. They thought if they did more good things than bad, then the scales of righteousness would tip in their favor and God would allow them sanctuary into His Kingdom.

The rich young man also had this problem. Jesus, after correcting the young mans understanding of the word 'good', brought the Law upon him. Jesus took him through five of the Ten Commandments to which the young man said he had kept from his youth. Hard to believe that he kept them, but Jesus didn't argue the point with the young man.

Jesus knew his heart and told him to sell all he had, give it to the poor and then follow Him. This was a intentional swing to 'thou shall have no other god's before Me'. Jesus knew what this man's idol was; his money.

The young man went away sad because he loved his money more than God.

If you want eternal life in Heaven, keep the Commandments from your birth.

Haven't kept them.......no one has....that's bad news for you because you're going to die in your sins unless you do something about it.

The Bible say’s in Hebrews 9:27 that it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment. The Bible is clear that after we die, we will stand in judgment before God.

So how does one get forgiveness of sins and eternal life with God?

You may say, "What sins?" The Bible says in 1 John 3:4 that whoever transgresses the Law commits sin. So sinning is transgressing or breaking God’s Law.

Which Law? The Ten Commandments, God’s moral Law.

Have you broken God’s Law?

Let’s look at just three of the Commandments…The 9th Commandment is thou shall not lie. Ever told a lie? That makes you a liar. The 8th Commandment is thou shall not steal. Ever stolen something? That makes you a thief. The 3rd Commandment is thou shall not take the Lord’s Name in vain. Ever said something like, "Oh my G**?" Or used His name as a curse word? The Bible calls that blasphemy. The Bible says that God will not hold him guiltless who takes His Name in vain.

The Bible says that all liars will have their part in the lake of fire.

The Bible also says that no thieves will inherit the Kingdom of God.

That’s the bad news.

But there is good news!

Two thousand years ago, God sent His Son Jesus Christ to Earth. He lived a perfect sinless life. He died a horrible brutal death on the cross for the sins of the world; for your sins and my sins. They buried Him. But three days later, God raised Him from the dead so that you could have forgiveness of your sins and eternal life in Heaven.

It’s like this; you broke God’s Law, but Jesus paid your fine.

The question now becomes; how do you receive this forgiveness of sins? The Bible says you must repent of your sins and place your trust in Christ to save you from God’s wrath on judgment day. To repent is not just saying you’re sorry, but turning your back on sin as well. Trusting in Christ is like trusting a parachute. You don’t just believe in a parachute, you must put it on for it to save you.

Once you do this, you will pass from death to life and God’s wrath will pass-over you.

1 comment:

Question of Identity said...

Thanks for this Wayne

I am using this account of Jesus and the rich young man in a Religious Education lesson at a school I teach at and whilst I am restricted in my conclusion, am always at liberty to say 'As a Christian I belive that...'

Your post has given me food for thought.

God bless

Neil