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Little Children and a Young Man

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice
The Truth Network Radio
April 7, 2021 8:00 am

Little Children and a Young Man

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice

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April 7, 2021 8:00 am

We can sit around and wonder why some people are called to poverty and others are trusted with riches, but when it comes to living as a true disciple of Christ, we’re all called to do away with anything that keeps us from full obedience to God. On this broadcast of The Bible Study Hour with Dr. James Boice, we’ll be encouraged to store up eternal blessings rather than worldly possessions.

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We can sit around and wonder why some people are called to poverty and others are trusted with riches, but when it comes to living as a true disciple of Christ, we are all called to do away with anything that keeps us from full obedience to God on this broadcast of the Bible study hour with Dr. James Boyce will be encouraged to store up the eternal blessings rather than worldly possessions, and welcome to the Bible study on the radio and Internet broadcast with Dr. James Boyce bearing you to think and act quickly. So much of our lives are spent collecting and perfecting things we can take with us when we die. Let's listen as Dr. Boyce encourages us to live for that which is eternal whenever you study the Bible.

If you study it thoughtfully and carefully again and again. You'll find things that are eminently reasonable and balanced example we been studying Matthew 18 and 19. And there's nothing more reasonable and balanced learn the material that we find in these chapters, the theme is the character of those who become citizens of Christ's kingdom. And this is all presented in terms of relationships. Relationships of Christians to other Christians grew out of the question of the disciples who shall be greatest in the kingdom.

What's our relationship to other people to be as it one of competition or is it one of service and support. Secondly, relationship to those who sin against us.

Must I forgive how many times must I forget about was Peter's question again relationships of the husband, wife, wife to husband and I get a divorce. The grounds for divorce.

Jesus deals with that relationship to children. That's what comes out of the beginning of this chapter should children be included is our place for that matter, is this matter of following Christ only for adults, and finally latter part of the chapter that were going to also look at now relationship to money money is a barrier we all wanted who then be saved now. On the other hand, we sometimes find when we study Scripture things that are startling and even jarring. They don't seem to be there. They promote questions that we would never anticipated in this section were going to look at the day we find examples of that here we have an example of Jesus correcting his disciples when the parents brought the children disciples, one of the drive. The parents of the children away. Jesus is that's wrong.

Let them, but then the very next paragraph we see Jesus apparently driving away in earnest young man at once to be his follower but who, it seems, is unwilling to pay the price of discipleship. This man's allowed to go but even more puzzling is allowed to go because he is unwilling to part with his possessions. But as the chapter ends we find Jesus promising exactly that to his disciples he promises them houses, brothers, sisters, mother's mother's children and fields in this life. Well, those contracts are a bit confusing. It takes a little bit of careful thought to understand one thing that is the same in the latter part of this chapter is that it talks about people who are coming to Jesus. The first example of the latter, the parents who are bringing their children. We don't have to spend a lot of time.

I think on these verses because the meaning is apparent on the surface, Jesus welcome children of the most attractive things about Jesus Christ. As we read these stories is that he had that kind of personality, the openness, the warmth with which children seem to have felt comfortable lacing to a been drawn to them and his attitude toward them reflected in this and other parallel passages has done an awful lot to determine the way Christian people think about children and their place in the family of God and how we on work with them now.

Jesus also use the incident teacher about the character of those who are to be part of his kingdom. Just as he did in chapter 18. You have two stories here that are very much alike, when the disciples were arguing about who would be greatest in the kingdom was a little child. Mary took the child a set that child in the midst he said I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you'll never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven here in the 19th chapter. Once an obviously parallel passage he teaches the same thing. He says the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these important words, there are such panelists such as these, because Jesus is not saying that just children because they are children are part of the kingdom children are sinners too, but there is a lesson to be learned from children. Children tend to be humble and open, trusting, not always, of course, but they tend to be so work with adults who have had years of accumulated sentence and hardness.

All those things. It keeps us responding and open way. So he says if you want to be a follower of mine if you want to be a Christian, a member of my kingdom. There has to be something in you that is like a child after just receive the offer of salvation, which I'm providing humbly with simple trust when you talk about who's going to be greatest in the kingdom arguing over that that there is one sure clue that you're nowhere close to having an attitude of a child or being part of it brings us to this rich young man Matthew Mark and Luke. Each tell us about various Gospels at different things so all three say he was rich, Matthew adds that he was young Luke says he was a ruler probably means that he was ruler of one of the local synagogues. The interesting thing about him is that he is the first and probably the only example of a person coming to Jesus Christ was enslaved.

What is striking is that Jesus doesn't seem to be trying to win them over. In spite of the fact that the game with all sorts of desirable credentials and with what seemed to be the right question Walter chantry, a reformed Baptist, wrote a book called today's gospel authentic or synthetic, in which he notes.

I think rightly how different Jesus approach to this young man was from what many of today's evangelicals would do in similar situations. This young man was clean caught in earnest.

Apparently he wanted to be saved even ask a good question is a teacher, what good thing must I do to inherit eternal life with that kind of an encounter.

Most evangelicals just welcome it and do something like this leg presented with a three or four step plan of salvation. Ask him to make a personal commitment to Christ and assure him that he saved and saved forever and so forth Jesus and do anything of the sort reasons. First of all, challenge the young man about his idea of God, referring to Jesus was a good master is one of the accounts. Hasn't Jesus said look, why you call me good or why do you ask me about what is good is only one. It was good and that is God, the understand that other words, if you're going to talk about morale and a your morality has to be measured by the character of the Almighty by comparing yourself to other men and women.

Many reminded them of God's written law what it says murder, and commit adultery. Don't steal.

Don't give false testimony.

Honor your father and mother and then love your neighbor as yourself the end of that presentation, he called for repentance and for faith in himself go so your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come and follow me. I was the end of the interview young man was rich because he was unwilling to pay the price of parting with his possessions on the tiles That he went away sorrowful way and he did not become Christ disciple so I guess the question is that anyway when someone to Christ. Apparently Jesus taught. So what are chantry points out that Jesus demanded this turning from everything to himself as a condition of discipleship for everyone, including because it fails to articulate this cost. Much of today's church isn't preaching Jesus gospel. I wanted Jesus done first thing he had done is confront him with the holiness of God and with the laws demand. See list of the commandments with the sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth and fifth of the commandments that are found in Exodus 20 and then he skipped over the last is going to come back to the 10th, when later go on to Leviticus 1918, the summation of the second table of the law.

Love your neighbor as yourself.

It was a very probing response when the young man replied in his self-righteousness.

All these like What do I still lack then Jesus went the last of the 10 Commandments about coveting which was the young man's real problem and he said look what you have to do your cases.

So, your possessions, give the poor and then come and follow me was very evidence because he was hanging onto his money above all things that he did not love his neighbor as himself, and therefore he was guilty of breaking the entire table of the law need to ask you, does that mean that anyone wants to follow Christ has to become poor answer to that obviously is not necessarily a rich people in the Bible but it does mean two things. First we have to recognize our sinfulness. Know that were condemned by God's law, which condemns our covetousness as well as other things can't be justified by the law and secondly we really do have to repudiate anything that might be keeping us from following Christ for some that's bluntly, others might be something else of the commentators says the tests of this is different for different people.

Some find it hard to renounce hopes of worldly honor and fame for Christ's sake and to renounce wealth for others a hard trial is to abandon certain gratifications of the various appetites replaced.

Abraham left his native country at God's command that he became rich and famous.

Moses gave up the distinction and refine pleasures of court life tried patiently to rule the debased and intractable people. Elisha left his property of the call of God through Elijah Paul abandon his ambitious hope of being a great rabbi. All should be willing even to die for Christ, though not many are specifically required to do so.

See, the specifics may be different but the demand is the same for all people to be saved must apply ourselves take up our crosses daily and follow Christ. The Matthew tells us that after that interview the young man went away sad, but I think Jesus must've been said to the reason I say that is because of what he says next.

He didn't simply let it go, but he began to comment on what it happened to the benefit of his disciples. Jesus said, I tell you the truth it's hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.

Again I tell you it's easier for a camel to go to the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.

That's hard for any sinner. Of course, that's the problem. Our sin keeps us from coming to Christ.

In fact, it's not only hard, it's impossible apart from a radical change of heart. But talking about other sincere what were talking about here is the love of money and we mustn't forget, especially those of us who live in a materialistic culture like ours. This is achieved with lots.

The chief characteristic of our materialistic culture and the great barrier to faith people of Christ's day thought about wealth as being proof of God's blessing were wrong and that, of course, but they were a lot closer to the truth in their convictions and we are in hours we look at wealth and we don't think of it as having anything to do with God. Wait.

Think of it as being proof of our own skill or ability or worthlessness or whatever and maybe we even think it makes is better than other people that we get rich.

At least I understood it had something to do with God and God's blessing.

But what Jesus is saying here is that far from being a real blessing. Wealth is actually a hindrance often hindrance usually a hindrance to gaining the greatest blessings about which is salvation. In fact, a great deal of money seems to make receiving salvation almost impossible of the disciple single understood this very interesting incident. We watched the kind of things that they're saying. As these conversations go on and mostly they seem not to get it all just about as stupid and spiritual things as we are, but they do seem to be getting a little bit here because after all, when Jesus began to speak about money was speaking on their level. They were probably aware of how much they cover the debt themselves also asked the obvious question they said. Look at people who love money can't be saved. You then can be say is going to be pretty perceptive there saying something about their own hearts and Jesus answer was very direct. No one but this rich young man but you not anybody else since everybody loves something or someone else including money more than they love God speaking only from a human point of view of the situation is hopeless. Fortunately, we don't have to speak only from a human point of view, God is also in the picture. And Jesus concludes verse 26 spot with God all things are possible. Usually when it's moving you can earn heaven by wealth or good works, which is young man hoped he could do and if every desire of our hearts, even for good things is actually a fatal desire because it keeps us from trusting Christ completely and the only way anyone will ever be saved is that God operates entirely apart from us and for his own good pleasure. In other words, our only hope is God's grace. Salvation is by grace alone through faith alone, and since this is so it doesn't surprise us find that in the very next chapter, Jesus is going to teach about grace in the parable of the owner of the vineyard. I said a moment ago that not only was the young man sad anomaly was Jesus sad. I think here that Peter probably noticed because as I read the story. He seemed to want to kinda cheer the Lord up young man gone away but no, Jesus still had his disciples thought so he turned to Jesus and said well you know that's too bad, but we at least have left everything to follow you was nice as it is a sense in which they really had the center.

Peter left his fishing business. It probably was prosperous so it is brother Andrew and James and John for the madman patient Matthews writing this at leftist tax collecting business but sad thing is that the spirit of culminating was still in Peter because you wanted to remind the Lord that I have left everything in order to follow him but he just couldn't in all honestly leave off adding what then will there be for us as a showing by his question that he still had much of the spirit of the rich young man, and not much of that humble trusting spirit of the children.

Jesus had used it as an illustration of what's required in salvation how to Jesus answer Jesus. Interestingly enough to not say to Peter what he said to the rich young man is going to give it all up instead. He promised that no one who has followed him will ever be cheated out of anything study says it will be rewards and not only in the age to come at the renewal of all things, but also in the present age 2 was is just nothing to be compared with God's blessings. Others disagreement among commentators is what Jesus meant when he promised that his disciples would sit on 12 thrones judging the 12 tribes of Israel.

Some refer to literal rule of the disciples over Israel under Christ's overall messianic role in the returns to set up a messianic kingdom, millennium, others think of it as the participation of all the saved and the judgment of Christ, to be exercised at the last day. Some refer to some kind of rule by Christians in the present age. I think the words of the renewal of all things.

Christ's glorious throne decide the matter in terms of the future millennial age, however, that may be conceived, but that's not the most significant thing what is profoundly striking here is Christ's promise a blessing in the present age will use even telling his listeners that in order to be his disciples. I have to deny themselves and give up what they possess and follow him wholeheartedly. He's done it just now. Again, in the case of the rich young man now says that it is disciples do that not only will they receive blessings, but they'll receive 100 times as much as what was given up not only in some future age we can understand that but now fascinating is Mark's version is explicit. He says in this present age. We also answered with them. Persecutions what Matthew records Jesus is saying are these I tell you the truth of the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on 12 thrones judging the 12 tribes of Israel. Everyone was less houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive 100 times as much and will inherit eternal life course. The endless with the paradoxical statement. Many who are first will be last. Many were last will be versatile way of saying I suppose that those who have most here will not necessarily have most of heaven while statement becomes more more astonishing, as we study it surprising that it speaks of rewards of all first of all because there's nothing in the notion of discipleship that requires we owe Christ everything the NAFTA promises anything that even we do our best. We are is a set on another occasion unprofitable servants is what we are but it does speak specifically of homeless and father's mother's children, and even feels. I think fields is most interesting because the other things you could probably handle in a spiritual way, say well when he speaks of homeless.

He means he's preparing us a home in heaven.

We have it in John 14. The speaks of father's mother's brothers, sisters, children, and so for this might be the family of God is bringing us into this greater family and maybe even then he is talking about people in heaven but can't do that with fields, fields, means earth, so the mention of fields carries us back to the context in which earthly possessions are discussed in warns us about taking the other elements of this promise simply spiritually and what about that phrase 100 times as much per Job Job lost everything, and at the end God restored it and double double. Here Jesus is 100 times as much. Well we have to exercise some caution. I think for one thing, nothing in his teachings encourages us to think in terms of crass, materialistic day. Just did not encourage us to think along those lines is matter fact to do that is almost ludicrous because of that's what he means here sort of baldly on the surface, then we do obviously if you want to get rich is her as much as we can in the first decade of our working existence.

Give it all to Jesus and get it back 100 times more retire graciously while BC is not talking about that that's against the whole spirit about exciting again. The promise doesn't necessarily apply to every individual. It's very clear that some Christians are called the poverty. Also Paul was when I would nothing and he was supported in his missionary work by the gifts of the Christian, so matter how much people have and give up. They are only doing what they ought to do and many give up a lot and don't become rich in any sense.

This is a true promise because it does have to do with relationships and material possessions and at the very least, it means this note true follower of Christ is going to lack in the final analysis, any good thing.

What you have in the Old Testament where the psalmist said, my cup overflows.

That's experience of Christians are always in the way we anticipate are necessarily in our sinful state in the way we want to certainly is our experience. Sometimes they got is no man's veteran right sense that is true. I'm personally convinced even of material things that God gives us everything that he can give us without destroying our souls are ruining our usefulness had a little more money. It probably be less devout certainly find it very easy to get off track trust real riches to very few, but we tend to miss use that now in spite of all his qualifications.

This really is an encouragement to people to serve. Sometimes when we say God is no man's debtor we get the idea that we can control God because he is no man's debtor if we do something for him that he's got to do something for Ross and it's not that way. But in a properly understood this encouragement here does give us motivations for serving and serving the Lord wholeheartedly another several grounds for this encouragement number one he talks about great blessings. One thing that keeps us from following cases. The young man was an example is the feeling of the cost of following it would be too high why the young man didn't he thought well if I follow my have to give up my wealth and he didn't want to do that you have to give up too much. What Matthew was teaching here is that the blessings to be found in Christ's service are greater than the blessings we could have without its young man was unwilling to give up his possessions. He loved them more than they love Jesus couldn't be saved without loving God with all his heart and soul and mind and strength.

What if he had followed Christ turning his back on his wealth. What this text teaches us that Jesus would have blessed him 100 times over. Quite possibly with a home a large family and fields couldn't be certain what form Jesus blessing would take you by giving called to an itinerant ministry way.

The apostle Paul was but whatever form of the blessings that would be great blessings and it was to be encouraged by that. Secondly, these blessings are secure.

Blessings is not only the greatness of the blessings that Jesus promises that should encourage us to follow him with the fact that these blessings are secure, they can't be taken away. This young man turned away from Christ because he was unwilling to part with his possessions. But the irony of the story is that he had to do that anyway.

Eventually when you die, you can take it with you and even in this life you might've lost all his gold might've been stolen. The market might've dropped found himself, and that had to sell his field, all that sort of thing. Nothing secure about wealth in this life or I could put the point another way, God may allow the ungodly to amass great wealth, but do it only to their own destruction. As far as Christians are concerned of you belong to Christ, and put riches or anything else before serving him God they take away your wealth until you repent and turn to him in any case you lose the joy of following up to put him first in everything you do that and you can be sure what you placed in his hands a secure and secure forever is the last thing just briefly but only are these blessings great. Not only are they secure their also blessed.

That is, blessings that are blessed. The reason for that is what we are given by our Lord. If there received in the spirit of true discipleship that we hold in order to serve him we will find that will be using those possessions to help other people and so a blessing not merely to us but to other people as well. Another words they are twice blessed, blessed the one receiving them, and they must give her to remember this promise is for those who were following Jesus Christ's promises were great encouragement to trust God and serve Christ, but they are for those who have already turned from all lesser loyalties to serve him and not for those who return back to their possessions. As the young man did these alone. God promises Holmes parents and children, friends and fields with persecutions in the age to come eternal life.

That's a very great promise. Let's pray our father we bow before you can light have this kind of a conversation, examine ourselves and recognize there is a lot of that rich young man and each of us some time.

Since Christians plan ourselves on the back saying oh we kept all those commands that we really haven't given ourselves to Christ as was proved by the fact that we have things in our lives that we are unwilling to give up while teaches what real discipleship is we might experience the blessings of Christ promises only that we might experience them, but we being blessed might be a blessing to others to Jesus Christ, might be exalted and what we do and others might find him a Savior. In Jesus name. You are listening to the Bible study hour with the Bible teaching of Dr. James Boyce, a listener supported ministry of the alliance of confessing Evangelicals. The alliance exists to promote a biblical understanding and worldview.

Drawing upon the insight and wisdom of reformed theologians from decades and even centuries gone by. We seek to provide Christian teaching that will equip believers to understand and meet the challenges and opportunities of our time and place. Alliance broadcasting includes the Bible study hour with Dr. James Boyce every last word with Bible teacher, Dr. Philip Reich and Dr. Barnhouse in the Bible featuring Donald Barnhouse.

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