Build An Ark: Letters From the Ranch
And looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him, and said to him, One
thing you lack: go and sell all you possess, and give to the poor, and you
shall have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me. But at these words
his face fell, and he went away grieved, for he was one who owned much property.
The rich mans sadness at Jesus instructions to him reveal that
he was unwilling to listen not only to God, but even to someone he considered
to be a good teacher. What were his motives for asking the question in the
first place? Was he trying to receive approval and confirmation that his
religion could or would save him, assure him his place in heaven, and thereby
ease his conscience? Or worse, was he looking for a way to trumpet his self-righteousness
before others and out-righteous even a good teacher?
What is my true motive in asking questions of teachers, or even God? Is
it to justify living in my own religion or system of righteousness? Or is
it to empty myself of all I think will earn me heaven or Gods or mans
approval, being willing to face my own spiritual poverty, nakedness, and
blindness and be clothed in the righteousness of Jesus alone? Is it to enter
into true spiritual intimacy and communion with Him, dying to myself and
my own way, and living for Him?
Yet Gods unconditional love is extended to me even in my self-righteousness
that I might go (repent); sell ( divest myself of all I cling to for security);
give (love); come (enter into relationship with Jesus); and follow (humble
myself and obey God).