Saturday, June 7, 2014

June 8, 2014

"Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly I tell you, it is hard for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God."  Matthew 19:23-24

Another way that Jesus made the point of spiritual poverty was a statement to his disciples His humorous hyperbole, "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God.

Have you ever tried to thread a needle? It's not real easy is it?

Then imagine a camel being threaded through a needle. No chance, right?

Some say, "But wait, there was a very small opening in the wall around Jerusalem that was referred to as "the eye of the needle". 

According to those making this claim, it was barely possible for a camel to unload his saddle and whatever burden loaded upon him and crawl through that opening into the city. Those making this claim would say that is what Jesus was referring to.

There is one small problem with this claim, there is no reliable historic proof that this "gate" ever existed.

Others contend that the Greek word rendered "camel" is very similar to a word that means "rope" and that Jesus was saying it is easier to thread a rope through a needle than for rich man to enter Heaven.

Again, the problems inherent in that explanation are: (1) the word IS camel and NOT rope, and (2) why use revert to this stretch of the Greek word when the literal interpretation make His point better.

There is no way that a camel could be threaded through a needle! None!

Even if you had a particularly small camel and a very large needle you could not thread the animal through the sewing tool.

But, Jesus says, as impossible as that scenario is, it is more likely than a rich man forsaking his riches to place his complete and utter trust in Christ.

I'm not seeing any "easy believing" here, no "cheap grace" suggested in this saying of Christ.

Everyone who wants to belong to the Kingdom of God MUST become poor in spirit, declaring to Christ his sinful and morally depraved nature and repenting of it.

You have a chance to enter into the Kingdom of God. But Jesus is that only chance.

Taking this one and only chance involves repenting of every sin and all spiritual pride and surrendering all to Jesus in faith.

Have you done that?