By Chuck Bentley
In Mark chapter 10, a man known only as the Rich Young Ruler, ran to Jesus, knelt before Him, and asked Him what he must do to inherit eternal life. When Jesus explained that he must obey God’s law, the young man replied that he had lived up to those requirements. In other words, his heart was not broken by his inability to keep the law. So Jesus, having compassion on him, gave him further advice.
“One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”
Jesus moved from his spiritual advisor to his financial advisor. He addressed the issue that was most dear to the Rich Young Ruler’s heart.
The Bible records his response.
“But at these words he was saddened, and he went away grieving, for he was one who owned much property. And Jesus, looking around, said to His disciples, ‘How hard it will be for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God!’”
Jesus either gave this young man the worst financial advice ever recorded or the best. We must decide in our own hearts if Jesus is worth everything we own. That is not so hard for the poor, but it causes a great challenge to the wealthy.
While we are not all called to sell everything and give it away, we are all called to see God as the owner of all that we have and are required to be responsible to Him for our faithful management of His possessions. If we refuse His leading with our financial decisions, we too are like the Rich Young Ruler who refused to listen to Jesus’ financial advice.
Jesus expects to be first place in our hearts; if He is not, money is still in control of our lives.
Originally posted 4/23/2015.
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