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The Rich Young Ruler

by Kevn Smead © 2018

A young man came to Jesus
Eternal life he sought
He soon realized that nothing
Was quite as he had thought
He leaned on human reason and insight
And so viewed not the things of God aright

He approached with lowly reverence
He called Christ good but then
The Savior kindly reminded the man
Only God is good and not men
Of the Savior He had a superficial view
Of Jesus' full Deity He was given a clue

He knew not that he was helpless
He knew not he was depraved
He asked what things that he could do
To be eternally saved
With himself his hopes began and ended
(such are very often by the cross offended)

Jesus laid out the commands
By which a man could be saved
The man assured him that from birth
He'd been very well behaved
By His wicked heart he had been deceived
He was perfectly righteous, or so he believed

Jesus knew the man's true heart
The covetousness inwrought
He told him to sell all that he possessed
And give to the poor as he ought
He used the law to undeceive the man
And spoil his vain self-righteous plan

The man walked away offended
Unable to live out God's law
At least he now knew his standing
In breaking one point he broke all
We know not for sure if he ever came back
But faithfully by Christ he was shown His true lack

As Jesus watched him walk away
The man's lost estate He lamented
"How hardly shall the rich be saved"
The Savior solemnly commented
A camel may sooner pass through a needle's eye
Than the rich should go to heaven by and by

His followers stood in amazement
Who then can be saved they cried
"What things are impossible with men
Are possible with God" Christ replied.
Rich or poor, men to their efforts do cleave
Until God in His purpose gives them grace to leave

Oh sinner turn from your vain hopes
You'll fare no better at all
Than the rich young man in the Bible
When tested and proved by the law
Come away from self and all legal endeavors
Trust Jesus alone and be saved forever

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Click Here to contact Kevn Smead to request permission to use this poem.