My Daily Journal:
Jesus continues to dispel the myth of what a saved person looks like.
At the time that Jesus was on the Earth, it was simply assumed that a fellow Jew who was wealthy had been blessed by God. Those who were poor were not. So, wealth was not just a reflection of work or circumstance, it was a reflection of God’s view of the individual.
This wealthy man who approached Jesus assumed he was in. The Mark passage makes this even more clear because he asks about his “inheritance.” Someone would normally receive inheritance from their family, so for him to inherit it, meant that he already had an entitlement to it. He had followed the commandments, he had done his duty. What other good work did he need to do to remove any possibility of doubt?
But Jesus looks at him and loves him.
Jesus sees what he worships above God, the thing he doesn’t want to let go of because of what it means to himself and to others, to his pride and ego. Anything we refuse to let go of to follow Christ is something we put greater value on that we do on Jesus.
The apostles struggled. To them, this man had received huge blessings from God. To them, wealth = higher standing in God’s family, it was a yardstick measure showing God’s satisfaction with an individual.
But Jesus says it is just another situation in life, not a reflection of God’s love. There is no correlation between the size of God’s grace and blessing in a christian’s life and the size of that person’s checking account (as much as the preachers of the prosperity gospel may like). Either wealth or poverty can be a blessing or a stumbling block. They can draw people closer to Christ or take them farther away. If the man had made sizable donations to charities would not have made any difference. It isn’t about the money – it is about what comes first in your life.
One last thing – sometimes we need a little more tough love! Jesus told the wealth man these things not to punish him, but because he loved him. How often do we pray that Christ point out the the things in our lives that we are putting above Him as opposed to the number of times that we ask Him to “bless us” with more money.
Ephesians 2: 8-9, by grace save through faith, not by works so no man can boast. (he assumed works). Eph 1:5 God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ (he assumed in family)
By looking at him and loving him. He demonstrated what this man was putting before God in his life.
1. no gods before me, 2 worship any graven images.
Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, strength. Love your neighbor as yourself
He loved him
Creates a sense of entitlement and of salvation being something earned and acquired.