Skip to content

Rich

May 1, 2013

“All I once held dear, built my life upon, all this world reveres, and wars to own. All I once thought gain I have counted loss, spent and worthless now compared to this. Knowing you Jesus, knowing you, there is no greater thing” – Graham Kendrick.

Just finished reading the chapter “the Trap” in Timothy Keller’s “King’s Cross”, a book following the events depicted in Mark’s gospel. Well worth a read this book.

Many of us will know the story of the rich young ruler who came to Jesus asking what he had to do to earn eternal life. He assured Jesus that he kept all the commandments. Here was a man who had everything going for him. He would be a good catch in our churches today. If nothing else it would swell the collection bag!

But Jesus you may remember says there is one thing he is not doing. He needs to sell everything he has and give it to the poor. And so the man goes off sad, because that is too great a price for him to pay. He had a lot of stuff. We all have stuff in our lives, but as Keller asks do we use those things as tools, or are they actually the thing on which we pin our security? For this man it was everything.

And what about us. Whether its not enough or whether we’ve got a bit spare, money can be such a huge thing for us. We talk about financial security. Its all too easy I find to get sucked into an obsession with these things if we’re not careful. I’m no expert on dealing with this!!

I have often thought that if we had made up this story we would have had Jesus chasing after the young man. “Hang on, I didn’t mean that too literally”, but no Jesus watches him go. Presumably never to return, probably to get more and more stuff.

One of Keller’s thoughts though grabbed my attention. Before Jesus gave the young man the staggering news, Mark says Jesus looked at him and loved him. Keller believes this is because he in that moment identified himself with this other young man. Jesus was maybe 31 years old. Jesus is the Rich Young Ruler. A young man who has riches and authority that the other man cannot imagine. As Paul says Jesus was rich but became poor.

The one who had the throne of heaven and all the riches that went with it gave up every bit of it for this young man and for you and me. Ultimately he would experience the cross for him. All Jesus was asking the man to do, was to do what he himself was prepared to do for him. Jesus gave everything. The young man was not prepared to do the same, on a smaller scale.

The challenge for us may be about money, but it may be about something else – something else in which we place our security. Do we though have such a vision of Jesus and all that he has given for us that we can see that nothing this world offers can come close to knowing him?

Advertisements

From → Christianity

One Comment
  1. When we learn to rely on God it is so comforting to be able to put our trust in Him and not to worry any longer about where our security comes from. I’m stressing about selling our house at the moment and all day I have been giving it up to the Lord, so I needed to read this. Thanks, Mich x

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: