The well-known Christian businessman of a decade ago, R.J. LeTourneau, used to say, “If you give because it pays, it won’t pay!” (Lou Nicholes - Missionary/Author).
As Jesus watched the young man leaving, He no doubt was sorrowful as He turned to His disciples and shared how hard it is for those who have put their trust in riches to enter the Kingdom of God (v. 23). The disciples were very surprised to hear this (v. 24). Popular Jewish morality was simple. It believed that prosperity was the sign of a good man. If a man was rich, God must have honored and blessed him. No wonder the disciples were surprised! They would have argued that the more prosperous a man was the more certain he was of entry into the Kingdom. But God saw things from the perspective of eternity; the first became last while the last became first (v. 25). Those who are first in their own eyes will be last in God’s eyes, but those who are last in their own eyes will be rewarded as first.It is fatal when a man begins to think that everything worth having has a money price. Jesus would have said that the possession of material things is as follows (vv. 26-31):
The man who trusts in himself and his possessions can never be saved. On the other hand, if we sacrifice only to get a reward, that reward will never come.
If Jesus were to say to me, “One thing you lack,” to what would He point? What is it in my life that gets in the way of serving the Lord? What can I learn in this passage about the use of riches?
And Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, "How difficult it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!" And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, "Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God." And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him, "Then who can be saved?" Jesus looked at them and said, "With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God." Peter began to say to him, "See, we have left everything and followed you." Jesus said, "Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first."
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Mark 7:1-13Conflict with the religious leaders over laws
Mark 7:14-23Jesus attacks a system of rules and regulations
Mark 7:24-30Jesus casts a demon out of a Gentile daughter
Mark 7:31-37Jesus heals a deaf man with a speech impediment
Mark 8:1-9Jesus feeds 4000 with 7 baskets leftover
Mark 8:10-21The Pharisees ask Jesus for a sign from heaven
Mark 8:22-30Jesus heals a blind man gradually
Mark 8:31-38Jesus warns His disciples that He is going to die
Mark 9:1-8Jesus takes 3 of His disciples to a high mountain
Mark 9:9-13Three disciples question about the transfiguration
Mark 9:14-29The disciples are helpless and ineffective
Mark 9:30-37Disciples arguing about who is the greatest
Mark 9:38-50Jesus says greatness comes from serving others.
Mark 10:1-12Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?
Mark 10:13-22Possessions don’t help you obtain eternal life
Mark 10:23-31Hard for the rich to enter the kingdom of God
Mark 10:32-45Willingness to give extra service
Mark 10:46-52Every male Jew must attend passover
Mark 11:1-11Jesus rides a donkey into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday
Mark 11:12-18Jesus said the temple is a den of thieves
Mark 11:19-26Jesus cursed the fig tree and it dried up
Mark 11:27-33Jesus questioned on His authority
Mark 12:1-12Jesus tells about the owner of a vineyard
Mark 12:13-17Pharisees ask Jesus about paying poll tax
Mark 12:18-27Whose wife shall she be in the resurrection?
Mark 12:28-34"You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
Mark 12:35-44Jesus makes a series of charges against the scribes
Mark 13:1-13Prediction of "the time of Tribulation”
Mark 13:14-23False teachers in the end times
Mark 13:24-32A description of the Second Coming
Mark 13:33-37We must not be found sleeping