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Communion Meditations (2019)

 

Rich Young Ruler

Matthew 19:16-22

Originally scheduled for August 4

 

It is one of those incidents in the Bible that touches the soul of every man. The rich young ruler comes to Jesus with a question. But it’s no ordinary touch of theology; it is in fact the question that all of us long to have answered. What must I do to gain eternal life? It implies that the young man knows that he is lacking something — and that Christ knows what is lacking.

Christ tests him with what might be considered the standard questions of “ordinary holiness.” Has he been obeying the commandments? Has he done those things commanded by the law; both positive and negative? The young man passes this test — he is indeed one of the good guys. But as Christ points out, he’s missing one thing: total commitment to Christ. Jesus tells him to sell everything, give it to the poor and follow Him.

Interestingly, the rich young man does not challenge Jesus by asking for where he got the authority to say such a thing. He recognizes the righteousness of Christ’s answer. We might take a look at this too:

·         Jesus is “God in the flesh.” As such, he has the authority to command obedience from his creation. Later he will tell us that all authority has been given to him, in heaven and on earth.

·         How does Jesus know this is the right answer? It is because he is the agent who created all things. He knows what makes people tick. He designed you.

·         There is also this: Jesus gave us everything he had, all that he is, when he died on the cross. There is no greater love. If you are his follower, that is the measure of the love you must have for Him.

Communion is a reminder of these things. Remember that the body and the blood are portrayed in the bread and the cup. When you partake of these things, you proclaim the physical nature of Christ. Fully God, fully man, he walked in the flesh like we do. You proclaim that Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ, was and is God in the flesh.

You also acknowledge in communion that Jesus created all things. That means that you acknowledge the we borrow the concept of existence from him, for he is the self existent one, the creator God. Our God is an awesome God.

Finally, you acknowledge that he gave all for us, the supreme display of love. This being so, should you not respond with your total commitment to him? Something to think about.

 

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