Summary: Consider the rich young ruler, kept every commandment except one, "Love the Lord your God" and missed out on the kingdom, you have to be 100% for Jesus, 99% will not do
Watch were you are going!
I like collecting fossils sad but true. Typically I like to do this in a difficult way. On spot in particular is a very rough seashore, all boulders, from football size to mini like, you have to jump and stretch between them to move along the shore. The fossils can be found by looking into the gaps between the boulders, you have to have a good eye to see them. Oh yes the boulders are covered in seaweed, usually very wet and slippery and you could easily break a bone or two or knock yourself out if you fell, I have the bruises to prove it is a hard knock indeed. But if you keep your eyes on the rocks and were your feet are going, you will miss all of the good fossils, if you keep looking for fossils, sooner rather than later you will slip. I use this illustration to show you can’t serve two masters, which is what we are talking about today. You can’t follow Jesus and love something else more than him. You can be 99% for Jesus its 100% or as good as nothing, that’s what we speak of today.
Has it all.
This young ruler seems to have it all, wealth, looks, respect, authority and position within society. Perhaps a synagogue leader, a member of the Jewish supreme court he had authority and the bearing of leadership. You could see him doing well in the City a good type and rich as well, quite a catch really. He had health and wealth running up to Jesus the body beautiful, full of vitality, energy, physical strength and rich as well, what a church member eh!
But wait he’s also been good to his parents, he has not murdered or defrauded anyone, is honest, dependable and does not commit adultery. A honest man, quite rare you would think, never broken the commandments, a true candidate for church leadership forget being a humble member, he’s on the fast track to the upper levels of society every thing he touched turning to gold. Knows that Jesus is a true spiritual leader, is a seeker wanting more in his life, wanting eternity no less, "Good teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?" .All seem to like him. Jesus looked at him and loved him (mind you he does that with everyone!)
Do you have it all?
I can imagine Jesus turning to this man, who has it all, you can sense something is coming when Jesus says "Why do you call me good?" Jesus answered. "No one is good—except God alone. Jesus is pointing out to the man that he cannot presume to be a peer of Jesus, be on a level we he can decide if Jesus is good or not, none of us has that right, only the Father is heaven, God the pure one the I AM. Do we ever presume to be God, do we judge others and label them, do we forget God loves all, God created all and God sees into the hearts of each, it is for God to judge and God alone. The Jesus runs through the ten commandments, “Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, do not defraud, honour you father and mother”. No problem Jesus, I’ve kept all of those commandments since I was a boy, home free, passed with flying colors, now what about that life eternal. So close, Jesus looked at him and loved him even as he looked into his heart, well why not before him was a good man rich beyond belief yet poor in belief. The Lord reached out and touched the mans flaw with surgical precision of the word of God separated spirit from flesh as he said "One thing you lack,“. The disciples must have been thinking how can this man be lacking a thing, we need him master, can’t you just bend the rules a bit, he’s a good one and just think of all the bread he could pay for. Jesus said “Just one thing you lack”.
Then come follow me.
"Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth. This rich young man would rather his wealth than God. This man who ran after Jesus seeking eternal life, would soon turn crest fallen and walk away from Jesus. He had his answer, he had been told plainly how to convert his worldly wealth to heavenly reward, treasure in heaven guaranteed for eternity what an exchange
Matthew 6: 19 – 21
"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also”. And 24"No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.