Matthew 19:16-26


            These verses of Inspiration record a very sad, but very instructive incident. The rich young ruler came to the Lord Jesus concerned for his soul and for eternity. Yet, he went away without eternal life because he was very rich. With sorrow he counted the cost of following Christ and decided the price was too great. He wanted Christ and the world. When he could not have both, he chose the world and despised the Son of God. What a sad, sad story this is! Yet, within the story four questions are raised. The answers to these four questions need to be understood by all.


            “WHAT GOOD THING SHALL I DO, THAT I MAY HAVE ETERNAL LIFE?” On the surface, this question may appear to be a noble one, one that any thoughtful person ought to ask. But it is a question that betrays a very proud, self-righteous heart. This man presumed that he was sufficient in himself to meet whatever demands God himself might put upon him! In essence, he was saying, “Master, you tell me what God requires, and I will do it.” Being ignorant of God’s righteousness, he thought he could establish righteousness for himself (Rom. 10:3). What folly! Sinful man cannot produce righteousness (Gal. 3:10). God demands two things from all men that no mere man can ever produce: righteousness and satisfaction; obedience and atonement. Without these two things we cannot be made holy and we cannot see the Lord (Heb. 12:14). Christ brought in everlasting righteousness. And Christ made atonement for the sins of his people when he died as our Substitute.


            “WHY CALLEST THOU ME GOOD?” After raising this question, our Lord explained, “There is none good but one, that is, God.” Let us never forget that no man is good in God’s eyes by nature. And no man can make himself good by doing good. “For there is none that doeth good, no, not one!” The only man in the world, since the fall of Adam, who was good and did good, is the God-man Christ Jesus. And his goodness is of infinite merit for his people. His obedience is good. His sacrifice is good. God himself cannot refuse it! Because he is God, this good man, the God-man, is an effectual, all-sufficient Savior.


            “WHAT LACK I YET?” You may, like this rich young ruler, be very moral. But “one thing thou lackest.” And that “one thing” is faith in Christ, a faith that surrenders all to him as Lord. He proved his lack of faith by his refusal to surrender to and obey Christ as his Lord.


            “WHO THEN CAN BE SAVED?” With men it is impossible, “but with God all things are possible.” If salvation is up to man, or depends upon man, no one could ever be saved, rich or poor. But since “salvation is of the Lord,” salvation is not only possible, but absolutely certain for God’s elect. Every chosen, redeemed, and called sinner shall be saved. All hell cannot prevent it! Trust Christ alone as your Lord and Savior. If you do, the Lord God has saved you by his marvelous grace.



Grace Baptist Church of Danville - Grace For Today Radio Message #626

2734 Old Stanford Road - Danville, Kentucky 40422-9438

Donald S. Fortner, Pastor -Telephone 606-236-8235 - Email