Did you know that there are over 700 listings of the word good in the bible? Sometimes it means good, pleasant, agreeable, joyful or happy. Other times it means pure, upright, honorable or excellent.
Genesis 1:4 And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
God is the one who created good and He is the ultimate judge as to what is good.
You are good, and what you do is good; teach me your decrees. Psalm 119:68
Today I want to look at the encounter of a young man who asks Jesus what he must do to get into heaven in Matthew 19
"Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, 'Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?'
'Why do you ask me about what is good?' Jesus replied. '
There is only One who is good.
If you want to enter life, keep the commandments'
This encounter follows a mixed group of people who followed Him. Those who were seeking answers, curious as to His healing abilities, questioning if He was the Messiah, His own disciples watching His every encounter and sometimes failing in front of Him. It also included those who intended to try to trick Him, as in the case of the Pharisees.
Right after Jesus had blessed the children, I imagine because He loved them so much he was filled with joy, he meets the young man. Matthew 19:16 records the conversation.
Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?'
He was really asking, Can I be good enough to possess eternal life? How can I earn that Prize? I'm sure that we have all been there thinking, how can I make things right what can I do to have God love me more.
Jesus tries to help the guy out by reminding him that only God is good. He designed goodness, He is goodness. Sorry dude, you never had a chance on your own. Nevertheless, Jesus reminds him of the commandments and then in Mark 21 it says that Jesus had compassion on him.
I wonder what happens when we start telling God about things in our life and then begin asking Him questions. Does He also look at us with compassion and then lovingly tries to redirect us?
Jesus goes on to tell him to sell everything and follow him. This was not exactly what the young man wanted to hear and he left full of sorrow because he had great wealth. The man had assigned goodness to his possessions and not to being a follower of Jesus.
So back to the question, What must I do to inherit eternal life? The answer is simply show your devotion by being willing to give up everything to follow Him. Follow the only one who is good!
You are good, I am not, help me to live with open hands so that you may have and use anything that I have possession of. I want to follow you and serve you.