Luke 18:18-30 NIV

“A certain ruler asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. You know the commandments: ‘You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.’ ” “All these I have kept since I was a boy,” he said. When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was very wealthy. Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” Those who heard this asked, “Who then can be saved?” Jesus replied, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.” Peter said to him, “We have left all we had to follow you!” “Truly I tell you,” Jesus said to them, “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or sisters or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God will fail to receive many times as much in this age, and in the age to come eternal life.””

Observation-What does it say?

We cannot be confident in our own righteousness. In this story with the rich young ruler, he was exalting himself to Jesus—basically he tried to base salvation on his good works, but Jesus did something He is always good at…He exposed his heart. In this same chapter was the parable of the Pharisee and tax collector. The Pharisee was confident in his own righteousness and looked down on the tax collector. He was exalting himself in his prayer to the King of kings. The tax collector however, exalted The King of kings in his prayer by understanding who he was in relation to God.

Understanding-What does it mean?

The Lord’s love towards us is not dependent upon our works. If it was, the Cross and Resurrection would be null and void.

Pastor Gary spoke last Sunday about how God gave him a picture of His love for him (and us) through his dog Harley. Basically, through his illustration, His love is not based on our title, what we did wrong or right that day, what mood we are in, etc. He also used Naomi (in the book of Ruth) to show that even though Naomi was bitter with Him, God never turned His back on her and worked through Ruth to restore her faith in Him. 

Even when the Pharisees mocked, flogged and killed Jesus and the people consented to it; even when His disciples and best friends turned their backs on Him, Jesus still loved them and you and I so much that He continued with His mission in order to have relationship with us. 

Thinking about His love for me (us) always leads me to WANT to live my life for Him. 

Life Application

Our good works are dependant on how dependent we are on our Good and Perfect King. 

Pastor Levi once said that we are who we are only by association. It is so true. All of our gifts, talents, abilities, wisdom, and good choices are a fruit of our relationship with Jesus. 

Let’s continue to put Him first through prayer, Bible reading, journaling, application, staying close to the family of Christ and loving and serving others for His glory!

-Michelle Gaddi