October 11, 2018
It is interesting that in the Gospel, the rich young man seems to have things in order concerning his relationships with others. He seems to be keeping the last seven commandments well. But, he makes no mention of his following the first three commandments that we usually understand to be connected with our relationship with God. Jesus understands this and realizes that this young man, who is rich, has put others things before his relationship with God. This is why Jesus tells him that he must leave all behind. His riches are keeping him from following God first and foremost.
The response of Peter and the disciples is striking. They understand what has happened and they reflect upon their own lives, realizing that they fall short as well. Jesus stresses that riches cannot come before God. Peter, echoing our own cries, asks, “Well, then, who can be saved?” Jesus’ reply is heartening. Certainly, we need to keep trying to put God first. But, we also might leave room for God’s grace to work within us, accomplishing what we might otherwise fail to do. For as Jesus reminds us, “All things are possible for God.”