1 1 Rich Young Ruler Matthew 19:16-30 Mark 10:17-31 Luke 18:18-30
2 2 Texts: Matthew 19:16-30, The Rich Young Ruler 16. Now 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, obey the commandments. 18. Which ones? the man inquired. Jesus replied, Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do 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, I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man 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 a rich man 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 man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible. 27. Peter answered him, We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us?
3 Jesus said to them, I tell you the truth, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29. And everyone who has left houses or brothers and sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life. 30. But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first. Mark 10:17-31, 17. And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? 18. And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? There is none good but one, that is, God. 19. Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honor thy father and mother. 20. And he answered and said unto him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth. 21. Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me. 22. And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions. 23. And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God!
4 And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! 25. It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26. And they were astonished out of measure, saying among themselves, Who then can be saved? 27. And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible. 28. Then Peter began to say unto him, Lo, we have left all, and have followed thee. 29. And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel s, 30. But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life. 31. But many that are first shall be last; and the last first. Luke 18:18-30, 18. And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? 19. And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? None is good, save one, that is, God. 20. Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor thy father and thy mother. 21. And he said, All these have I kept from my youth up. 22. Now when Jesus heard these things, he said unto him, Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me.
5 And when he heard this, he was very sorrowful: for he was very rich. 24. And when Jesus saw that he was very sorrowful, he said, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 25. For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle s eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26. And they that heard it said, Who then can be saved? 27. And he said, The things which are impossible with men are possible with God. 28. Then Peter said, Lo, we have left all, and followed thee. 29. And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or parents, or brethren, or wife, or children, for the kingdom of God s sake. 30. Who shall not receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting. Introduction: I. The events of this lesson and the related teachings are set within three or four months of the end of Jesus earthly ministry. II. During these final weeks Jesus taught at length about service and stewardship. Commentary: Matthew 19:16, 17, Now a man came up to Jesus and asked, Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life? Why do you ask me about what is good? If you want to enter life, obey the commandments. I. This rich young ruler was of admirable character. A. He was intently interested in achieving/inheriting eternal life.
6 6 B. He, believing that his obtaining eternal life hinged on his doing some good thing, didn t know what that good thing was. C. He thought that Jesus could identify this good thing for him. II. The rich young ruler addressed Jesus as Good Teacher. A. Mark 10:18, Why callest thou me good? None is good, save one, even God. B. Good was one of the Judaic titles of Jehovah. C. Such an august title was not to be used in a merely conventional manner. D. Psalm 145:9, the LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made. E. Was Jesus response a way of asking, Since only God is good and since you have called me good, do you recognize me as God/deity? III. Jesus told the young man who wanted to inherit eternal life,... keep the commandments. A. This is a reference to the Mosaic commandments. B. Jesus in the Christian era requires that those who would inherit eternal life keep his commandments. Matthew 19:18, 19, Which ones? the man inquired. Jesus replied, Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother, and love your neighbor as yourself. I. The rich young ruler asked which commandments he had to obey to inherit eternal life.
7 7 II. Jesus referred the young man to the Ten Commandments, but he did not specify, Thou shalt not covet... to this rich young ruler. III. It appears that Jesus was citing the rich young ruler s strong points in an effort to lead him to make the full commitment to Christian discipleship step by step. Matthew 19:20, All these I have kept, the young man said. What do I still lack? I. The rich young ruler reported that he had consistently observed these commands. II. However, he felt that something was still lacking. Do you ever feel this way? A. Jesus loved this fine young man. B. Mark 10:21, Jesus looked at him and loved him. One thing you lack, he said. Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me. C. Acts 10:1-6, At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion in what was known as the Italian Regiment. He and all his family were devout and God-fearing; he gave generously to those in need and prayed to God regularly. One day at about three in the afternoon he had a vision. He distinctly saw an angel of God, who came to him and said, Cornelius! Cornelius stared at him in fear. What is it, Lord? he asked. The angel answered, Your prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial offering before God. Now send men to Joppa to bring back a man named Simon
8 8 who is called Peter. He is staying with Simon the tanner, whose house is by the sea. D. Most people who have the wealth and character of the rich young ruler feel they are among God s elite and have need of nothing. III. He asked,... what lack I yet? Matthew 19:21, 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. I. Jesus told the rich young ruler that, if he wanted to be perfect (mature) he should go sell everything he had, give it to the poor, and follow him. A. Was Jesus calling this young man to discipleship/apostleship? B. The words are similar to those addressed to Peter, Andrew, James, John and Matthew. C. To follow Jesus in the manner specified makes it life s all consuming purpose. Nothing (wealth or family) could be allowed to come between Christ and the follower. II. A vow of poverty is not a universal requirement of Christians. A. Acts 2:44-47, All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Everyday they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, Praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
9 9 B. Acts 12:12, When this had dawned on him, he went to the house of Mary the mother of John, also called Mark, where many people had gathered and were praying. C. Acts 21:8, Leaving the next day, we reached Caesarea and stayed at the house of Philip the evangelist, one of the Seven. D. Acts 5:4, Didn t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God. III. Covetousness is sinful! This may have been a problem for this young man. Matthew 19:22, When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth. I. When the young man heard the words of the Master, he went away sorrowfully. II. The Lord knew that this young man needed to make a choice between his wealth and total commitment to the Lord. A. We know nothing more of this young man. B. If he had chosen to follow Jesus as did Peter, Paul and John, wonder what his life s story would have been like! C. The sad countenance speaks to the struggle that was going on in the heart of this young man. D. The struggle is going on in millions of hearts all over the world this very day.
10 10 III. Jesus knew what was best for this young man then, and he knows what is best for us today. Some people have too tight a grip on possessions and the security that they think possessions provide. A. If he lived to see the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70, he probably lost everything he possessed anyway. B. It would have been better to have used his wealth to help the poor and to have followed Jesus to heaven. Matthew 19:23, Then Jesus said to his disciples, I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. I. If it is so hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven, why do so many strive to be rich? A. 1 Timothy 6:9, 10, People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. B. Matt 6:33, But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. II. Christ did not say the rich could not be saved. He did say that riches make it more difficult to enter the kingdom of heaven.
11 11 Matthew 19:24, Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. I. A Jerusalem gate was called The Needle s eye and only with difficulty could a camel manage to pass through it. Matthew 19:25, When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, Who then can be saved? I. The disciples were astonished at this teaching of Jesus! A. The disciples couldn t understand how anyone could be saved if the superb rich young ruler couldn t make in into the kingdom. B. Christ must be all or nothing in our lives. Matthew 19:26, Jesus looked at them and said, With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible. I. Jesus taught that it is difficult, not impossible for the rich to get to heaven. II. God helps and makes it possible for people to overcome the special obstacles facing the rich who seek the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 19:27, Peter answered him, We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us? I. Peter said the apostles had forsaken everything and were following Jesus fully.
12 12 II. The disciples wanted to know what they would get for giving up everything to follow Christ. III. Peter was asking, What s in it for us? Matthew 19:28, Jesus said to them, I tell you the truth, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. I. The apostles in the regeneration (in the new world to come) would sit on twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel. A. The thrones are spiritual thrones, positions of eminence, authority and influence in Christ s kingdom. B. Their authority was to be over spiritual Israel, not physical Israel. C. Romans 2:28-29 A man is not a Jew based on what you can see from the outside (his race or lineage). A man is not a Jew based on what he is one on the inside (his heart). D. Romans 4:16 Therefore the promise comes by faith so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all of Abraham's offspring not only to those who are of the law (the Jews), but to those who are of the faith of Abraham (potentially anyone). E. Romans 9:6, It is not as though God s word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel. F. Galatians 3:29, If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
13 13 G. Each apostle was to have a throne. Peter s throne was no bigger nor more authoritative than the thrones of the other apostles. H. The apostles' message, the gospel of Jesus Christ, is the basis for the new creation which has already begun I. The times of the regeneration refers to the Christian era, the age of the new birth. Christians are created (born the second time) as new creatures, who await the creation of a new heaven and a new earth. J. Galatians 6:15 For neither circumcision counts for anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. K. 2 Cor. 5:17 Therefore, if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come. L. 2 Peter 3:13 But according to his promise we wait for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells M. 1 Corinthians 15:24-28, Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom of God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For he has put everything under his feet. Now when it says that everything has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything under Christ. When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all. N. Revelation 21:1-4 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride
14 14 adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He shall dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be among them, and He shall wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there shall no longer be any death; there shall no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away." Matthew 19:29, And everyone who has left houses or brothers and sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life. I. All who have made sacrifices for the cause of Christ will be rewarded a hundredfold (hundred times) in this life and will inherit eternal life in the world to come. II. Everyone who ever put this promise to the test has found it to be divinely assured. A. Family Hundredfold/Hundred times B. Property Hundredfold/Hundred times C. Eternal Life. Matthew 19:30, But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first. I. Those who are first in the estimation of the world may be last in regard to God s kingdom. II. Those who are lowliest in the world may well be the most highly esteemed in God s kingdom.
15 15 III. It is not how long we are in the kingdom, but how well we serve others that determines our rank in the kingdom.
16 16 Rich Young Ruler Questions 1. Approximately how much time elapsed between Jesus talk with the rich young ruler and Jesus death on the cross? 2. What was the name of this rich young ruler? 3. What question did he ask Jesus? 4. Jesus was divine. Why, then, did he ask, Why call ye me good? There is only one who is good. 5. What was Jesus answer to the question, What must I do to inherit eternal life?
17 To which ones did Jesus have reference? 7. Were any parts of the dialogue left out in Jesus reply? If so, why? 8. The rich young ruler said he had faithfully observed all these things and then asked, What do I still lack? What was Jesus answer to the question? 9. If we asked Jesus, What do we still lack? What might he say to us?
18 What was the rich man s response to Jesus answer to his question, What lack I yet? 11. What is our response to Jesus answer to our question, What lack we yet? 12. Is it hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven? 13. Is it impossible for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven?
19 Is it hard for poor man to enter the kingdom of heaven? 15. Peter and the other apostles had left everything to follow Jesus. What do they get?