Daily Devotion, 6-9-2020 Who Then Can Be Saved?

Pastor: Connie Belmore

Daily Devotion, June 9, 2020
Luke 18:18-30
Who Then Can Be Saved?

During these times of discord and division, we each may have fallen into a mode of judgment, thinking that anyone who does not see and view life as we do is wrong. We may have assumed at some point in our Christian life that others are not “saved” because of the way they act based on our assumptions of what it means to be saved.

In Luke 18:-18-30, Jesus’s initial response to the rich ruler’s question, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”, is “Why do you call me good? No one is good – except God alone.” Jesus is reminding this rich man that we are all equally not “good” when compared to God. Jesus indicates that he knows this rich young man knows and keeps the commandments and the ruler acknowledges that he has kept them since he was a boy. Jesus then tells him, "but there is still one thing missing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come and follow me.” The man responded with sadness because he was wealthy. Mark 13:22 tells the same story but describes the man as being “saddened by these words and went away in sorrow…”.  We do not know if this rich young ruler ever turned his life around, gave up his wealth and followed Jesus or not, but in this moment he walked away sad because what Jesus told him to do seemed impossible to him.

The underlying message to Jesus’s words is that the life of the one who is saved should reflect sacrifice and an unselfish giving of ourselves and all that we have to share with those who are poor. We truly are living out what it means to love God and love others when we give sacrificially of ourselves and our possessions. How many reading this have ever made that kind of sacrifice? I know that I have never lived a life of complete sacrifice such as the one Jesus has describe. The disciples even respond to Jesus by asking, “Who then can be saved”? Jesus’s answer is “What is impossible with man, is possible with God”.

It is only by the grace of God that any of us can be saved from a lifestyle of greed, self-centeredness, hatred, bigotry, selfishness and a sense of entitlement. It is only through the love of God that one can go beyond following a list of rules to living a life that reflects what it means to love God and love neighbor more than we love the material things of this life. The challenging question for each of us is how much are you willing to sacrifice to show others how much you love God and how much you love them in this day of division and hatred? Let us pray for God to show us the way as only God can.

Dear God, thank you for sending us Jesus who taught us your ways… ways that reflect a life of sacrifice and giving to others without hesitation out of our love for you. Help us to be ever mindful that while living in the flesh this seems impossible, that with you, God, all things are possible, even giving up all we have so that others might be blessed. Help us to give up our self-centeredness and our sense of entitlement and realize it is better to give than it is to receive and to live out a life which exemplifies the unselfish life that Christ illustrated for us in his time on earth. And it is in his strong and precious name we pray. Amen.

  July 2021  
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