The Rich In Heart Cannot Enter The Kingdom

Thursday, May 4th, 2017

“For 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.”  Luke 18:25

Introduction

In today’s passage, the Lord said “For 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.”  It is so hard for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God that Jesus said that it’s easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich to enter the Kingdom.  Does this then mean that there really is no one rich in Heaven?  Is it useless for the wealthy to be saved from sin?  No, in fact this passage has a spiritual meaning and so in reality, there are many rich people in this world who have received the remission of sins to enter Heaven by believing the Righteousness of God.

Let us glean Luke 18:18-27 to identify some of the misconception that hinders perfect salvation in Christ.

 

The Rich That The Lord Spoke Of Here Refers To Those Who Are Rich In Heart   

The Word was actually spoken to the rich young man who had asked, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”  This young man was a ruler whose faith was bound by his own acts. Listed below are some of his misguided notion about salvation  and how it differs with the teaching of Jesus.

  1. The rich young man saw Jesus just as one of those respected teachers in the world. That is why Jesus said, “No one is good but God.”  In other words, Jesus made it clear that human beings are absolutely devoid of virtue.  Jesus is God Almighty.
  1. The rich young man claimed that he had kept all the commandments with his act. However, far from praising the man, our Lord said to him “you still lack one thing, give away your treasure to the poor.” The Bible says, the young man became very sorrowful for he was very rich.  That is why Jesus said it is easier for a camel to enter a needle than one who is rich in his heart.  Since his heart is filled with worldly things and carnal thoughts, the Gospel of God’s Righteousness cannot enter his heart.
  1. The rich young man was rich in both his flesh and his acts. He was a self righteous man. It was foregone conclusion that this man would not accept Jesus as his Savior nor have his eyes open to recognize Him as such.  How could the Gospel Word which proclaims that Jesus saved everyone through His baptism and death enter into a heart rich with its own righteous acts?
  1. The rich young man thought he could eventually obtain eternal life if he did many good deeds and kept the Law. Jesus, in complete contrast, was the Savior Who had come to deliver those who know their sinful nature and therefore relied on the love of God and His Righteousness to be saved.

 

Everyone Is Always Insufficient In Both Body And Spirit

Everyone living in this world is completely devoid of any virtue. Jesus wanted the young man to know that only God is good and all men are fundamentally evil and grave sinners.  The young man’s focus was laid else where, he was rich both materially and spiritually filled with self righteousness and hypocrisy.  Those whose hearts are rich with their own thoughts cannot enter Heaven just as no camel can go through the eye of a needle. 

 

We Can Enter Heaven Only By Grace Through Faith In God’s Righteousness

The Lord preaches the message of hope saying  that the things which are impossible with men is possible with God.  No one can enter Heaven by relying on his own righteousness,  virtues or by keeping the Law with his own acts.  This means that no one can reach his salvation through his perfect acts, by not committing sin and keeping the Law.

However, the Bible says that this is possible with God.  Having come to the earth, Jesus has saved us from all sins, original, personal and future sins – through the baptism He received at the Jordan River from John the Baptist and the blood He shed on the Cross. 

The covenant of promise made with our Lord is forever unchanging, so assured and secure, that once we realize the salvation of the Lord, we can’t help thanking Him all the days of our life.

 

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