Sunday, July 08, 2007



Matthew 19:16-26

16 Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, "Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?" 17 "Why do you ask me about what is good?" Jesus replied. "There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, keep the commandments." 18 "Which ones?" he inquired. Jesus replied, " 'You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, 19 honor your father and mother,' and 'love your neighbor as yourself.' 20 "All these I have kept," the young man said. "What do I still lack?" 21 Jesus answered, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." 22 When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth. 23 Then Jesus said to his disciples, "Truly I tell you, it is hard for the rich to enter the kingdom of heaven. 24 Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for the rich to enter the kingdom of God."

25 When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, "Who then can be saved?" 26 Jesus looked at them and said, "With human beings this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."

In this well known story we find a man who was so right, yet he was so wrong. He came to the right person. He asked the right questions: "What good things should I do that I may have eternal life?" and "What do I still lack?" He then heard the right answers from Jesus. Finally, he took what he heard from Jesus and made the wrong decision. And, he went away very sorrowful.

Jesus explains to His disciples two things: FIRST-It is hard for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God.

SECOND-It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a media. It's an impossibility.

There seem to be 3 problems with being rich, which we all are in this country: FIRST-Riches place you in a position of being absorbed by your riches. Riches don't satisfy at the gut level.

SECOND-Along with riches comes a preoccupation with them. This leads to a certain self-absorption.

THIRD-Riches has an empty, even deceitful lure in your experience. They promise much and deliver very little. They can easily disappear, rust or be stolen. Riches have a tendency to deceive you into thinking you have no need for anything.

FOURTH-Riches contain a foolish pride. Riches tends to promote a sense of arrogance and pride. If you find yourself blinded by this self-absorbed pride, your tendency is to not listen to the needy calls of the poor.

It's important to note that not all who are rich are guilty of these things. However, it's also important to note that there were many godly people in the Scriptures who were also very rich-Job, Abraham, Joseph, David, Solomon, Barnabas, Philemon and Lydia.

NOTE the key to this passage is: With human beings it is impossible to experience the great grace and empowerment offered in order to enter the Kingdom. In fact, it's impossible to change on your own. The only genuine transformation comes from God, Himself. God majors in the impossible.

Tell me, are you facing some impossibilities in your life right now? God delights in working through these impossibilities. As a matter of fact, if God doesn't do His impossible work in your life, then there is no life to talk about. The rich man made the wrong decision and walked away from Jesus. If you want your heart to be transformed, then don't walk away, but draw closer to the only one who can change you inside out. Jesus.