Verse of the Day: Don’t Trust in Wealth

June 26, 2007

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22 So when Jesus heard these things, He said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”

23 But when he heard this, he became very sorrowful, for he was very rich.

24 And when Jesus saw that he became very sorrowful, He said, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God! 25 For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

Luke 18:22-25 (NKJV)

From the Nelson Study Bible:

Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor: This was a radical test of the ruler’s concern for others (12:33, 34). Jesus was determining whether the ruler’s treasure (see Matt. 6:19-21) lay with God or money (16:13). Jesus was not establishing a new requirement for being saved. He was examining the ruler’s orientation to God by directly confronting him with the very thing that was hindering him – namely, his wealth. By contrast, Zacchaeus was a wealthy man who responded to Jesus (19:8-10).

How hard it is for those who have riches: A wealthy person is easily tempted to depend on earthly riches rather than on God. easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle: Jesus used this figure of speech to emphasize the difficulty of turning from wealth to find salvation. Because many Jewish people believed that wealth was evidence of God’s blessing, Jesus’ statements would have been shocking to His audience.

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