Once a religious leader asked Jesus this question: “Good Teacher, what should I do to inherit eternal life?”
“Why do you call me good?” Jesus asked him. “Only God is truly good. But to answer your question, you know the commandments: ‘You must not commit adultery. You must not murder. You must not steal. You must not testify falsely. Honor your father and mother.’ ”
The man replied, “I’ve obeyed all these commandments since I was young.”
When Jesus heard his answer, he said, “There is still one thing you haven’t done. Sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
But when the man heard this he became very sad, for he was very rich.
When Jesus saw this, he said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God! In fact, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God!”
Those who heard this said, “Then who in the world can be saved?”
He replied, “What is impossible for people is possible with God.”
Peter said, “We’ve left our homes to follow you.”
“Yes,” Jesus replied, “and I assure you that everyone who has given up house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the Kingdom of God, will be repaid many times over in this life, and will have eternal life in the world to come.”
He had it all and wanted more. His words give away his mind-set and attitude. Jesus nails it when he says, “Who do you call good?” He knew this one was not a believer, therefore he would not be believing that Jesus was God. At that point the manipulation is exposed, what we call ‘car salesmanship’ and his orientation in life to acquire what he can for himself. He already had wealth in this life and wanted to secure more for the next life. He used the word ‘inherit’ as if it was something he would have a right to. So Jesus cuts to the core when he says sell all you have, give to the poor, and follow me. The rich man couldn’t because he did not truly believe. And then Jesus lays out the cost of following him, along with the rewards.
We can have it all here, and lose it all there, in eternity, when the acquiring of wealth and security become our focus separate from following Christ. When we do his will we reap “many times over in this life, and will have eternal life in the world to come,” according to Jesus words.
There is a popular saying; ‘let it go, if it is real, it will return to you,’ speaking of loving another when one is holding on too tight. Apply that thought here, let all go for the sake of following Christ and he says it will all come back to you and more.