And as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone"-Mark 10:17-18 A Young Man walked up to Jesus trying to see if he was good enough for eternal life. Yet Jesus, from the outset dispels that "No one is good except for God alone." Paul reminds us: “None is righteous, no, not one;
no one understands;
no one seeks for God.
All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;
no one does good,
not even one.”
“Their throat is an open grave;
they use their tongues to deceive.”
“The venom of asps is under their lips.”
“Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.”
“Their feet are swift to shed blood;
in their paths are ruin and misery,
and the way of peace they have not known.”
“There is no fear of God before their eyes.”-Romans 3:10-18 What does this mean? None of us can achieve righteousness on our own. None of us is good enough. If we try and be good enough, we will fail, because according to the law, to be guilty of one violation is to be guilty of all of it. You are a felon if you commit one felony your whole life. You have a record if you have one arrest. You're a liar if you say one lie. Our goodness is not enough. The same argument this rich young ruler tried to use before Jesus (see below) "I've kept the commandments" falls short. We can't earn God's righteousness by our own actions. It is only through Christ, and Christ alone that we can be right before God. No amount of good works can supply the necessary atonement to make up for even one of our rebellious mistakes. The Law demands justice, Christ brings redemption and Grace. It is by Grace through Faith in Jesus Christ that we are saved. Anything else is good works that fall short. Mark 10:17-31 And as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’” And he said to him, “Teacher, all these I have kept from my youth.” And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “You lack one thing: go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” Disheartened by the saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.
And Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How difficult it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God! 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.” And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him, “Then who can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” Peter began to say to him, “See, we have left everything and followed you.” Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”