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On the Way to the Cross - The Impossible is Possible

The way Jesus deals with this young man seems quite radical - even abrupt! And it is troubling. It was troubling for the disciples, for the wealthy young ruler, and probably for us. However, it would be easy to miss the truth if it was delivered any other way. Sometimes it’s better to tell it as it is! Luke places this event in the midst of a series of incidents and parables designed to indicate the “character” of a true disciple. All the Gospel-writers place it near the end of the Lord’s public ministry, and Mark supplies a little more detail: "As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him"(Mark 10:17). Jesus is about to leave the town. Therefore, it was the man's last chance to ask his question. So he runs up to him and falls on his knees before him, and asks, “What should I do to inherit eternal life?” To everyone present it seems a picture of urgency, earnestness and humility.

Let’s pick up the story again with the young man’s question.“Good teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” But who is he, and why did he need to ask this question? The word translated "ruler" is Greek ‘archon’, "generally, one who has administrative authority - a leader, or official." Matthew's account (Matthew 19:22) adds another detail and refers to the ruler as a "young man," and Luke 18:23 tells us "he was a man of great wealth." Here we have an earnest young man (very wealthy indeed), and probably because of his wealth and sincerity about spiritual matters, he was entrusted with governance in the synagogue (a ruler, a respected person in the community).

For the rest of the pastors notes, click here...

Chris Demetriou, 25/03/2012

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