I. The Seeking Ruler (Mark 10:17-21)
Jesus was met by a young man who was wealthy, and had the responsibilities that come with leadership. He began to ask Jesus questions… and seemed to be very interested in what Jesus would have to answer. He fell on his knees and said, “Good Teacher… what must I do to inherit eternal life?” (Mark 10:17-22).
Jesus answered in a way that showed the young man was very wrong to think he could do enough “good stuff” to earn his way into Heaven. The young man seems to have been a quality young man; the kind of son any parent would like to have and the kind of young man any parent might want his/her daughter to marry. But, as is true for anyone – including you and me – salvation becomes a matter of priorities.
II. The Sorrowful Ruler (Mark 10:22)
When this young man could not see how he could nudge his wealth and status down to 2nd place, he walked away sad.
He did not miss Heaven because of his age. He did not miss Heaven because of his wealth, or his status, or his many possessions. He missed Heaven because he put these things above his relationship with God.
At its root, the gospel is not about doing good deeds or obeying commandments or even giving away your money. The gospel is about surrendering our lives and our lifestyles to Jesus… making Him and His will 1st place. If Jesus is not 1st place in your life… above EVERYTHING else, then what you’re calling salvation is not really salvation.
* What might you be holding onto that is keeping you from surrendering your entire life to Jesus?
You can read the story of the Rich Young Ruler in Matthew 19:16-30; Mark 10:17-31; Luke 18:18-30.