The Rich Young Ruler


A rich young ruler came to Jesus one day and asked Him what good thing he must do to gain eternal life. Jesus said, “Keep the commandments.”

“Which ones?” asked the young man.

“Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not bear false witness, honor your father and your mother, and love your neighbor as yourself,” Jesus answered.

“I have kept all these,” the young man responded.

“If you want to be perfect,” Jesus said, “go, sell all your possessions and give to the poor. You will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow Me” Jesus said.

The rich man walked away sad because he had great wealth and possessions (Matthew 19:16-22).


The rich young ruler had done everything right he knew to do, but he still felt empty. I’m sure from his question he thought there must be more to life than the day-to-day eating, working, resting, finding pleasure. His riches only left him wanting more, but apparently nothing satisfied. Jesus wanted to change that for the young man by changing his focus–stop his reliance on money and possessions and think about things that are true–loving God and loving others. Not only are these fulfilling; they cause us to build up treasures in heaven. It is not a sin to be rich, but God wants us to share what we have, to give generously and trust Him, not our wealth.


Lord, thank you for the life you have given us. Make us good stewards of our blessings–to spend and save wisely and to be generous. It would be easier for us to be selfish and think we deserve what we have. Teach us how to be loving. Show us opportunities we can help others. In Jesus’ name, Amen.