Matthew 19: 16-25 “And someone came to Him and said, “Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may obtain eternal life?” And He said to him, “Why are you asking Me about what is good? There is only One who is good; but if you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.” Then he *said to Him, “Which ones?” And Jesus said, “You shall not commit 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 things I have kept; what am I still lacking?” Jesus said to him, “If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when the young man heard this statement, he went away grieving; for he was one who owned much property.’ And Jesus said to His disciples, “Truly I say to you, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this, they were very astonished and said, “Then who can be saved?”
As I was sharing my lesson yesterday with a coworker who is a Christian we were talking about the fact that obeying the commandments is not all we have to do… as the rich young ruler came to Jesus in Matthew 19: 16 and said Good Teacher/ Master what shall I do to be saved. Jesus said keep the commandments. He said which ones? Jesus quoted the last of the 10 commandments and the rich man said I have kept all of these since my youth. Then Jesus said, go sell all you have and come follow me. You see at that point Jesus pointed out his heart issue… greed. We must deny ourselves and Follow Him. Today that looks more like, denying selfish desires, Follow God wherever He tells you to go, whatever He tells you to do regardless of if it interferes with your plans, showing love to the unlovely or poor, turning the other cheek when accused, forgive others for everything. So hard to do. Denying our own desires to be recognized or to do something pleasurable in order to do something for Him is hard but rewarding. Do we do it with a good attitude or out of duty… All of these things touch on issues of the heart, our pride, our comfort, our selfishness, our bad attitudes, our anger or bitterness or desire to get even. Just like keeping His commands is good and does show the depth of our love, our heart issues also need to be addressed and not swept under the rug as if they don’t matter.