Mark 10:21,22 Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me. And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions.
In Mark 10:17-22, Jesus confronts a man who is moral, rich, young, and wealthy. This man asked Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life. Jesus asked him if he kept the commandments, to which he replied without hesitation yes. But there was something that stood between this man and God. And the thing that kept him from surrendering himself totally to Jesus was his great possessions. His wealth and possessions was his god. He would rather live without Jesus than live without his money and stuff.
In light of the ever-changing views and attitudes that people have regarding what it means to follow Jesus, I have had this lingering thought in my mind from what I have observed over the last 45 years. Jesus’ command to “Follow Me” seems to have become little more then a spiritual hobby, based on a decision to accept Jesus, where faith in Him is a weekend pastime that occasionally fits Jesus in on a Sunday, as long as it doesn’t cause a conflict with other hobbies or costs something.
The gift of eternal life is free. Jesus Christ has paid the full price for our sins. Nobody can earn or deserves salvation. It is all grace from A to Z. However, there has been a glaring avoidance of any section of Scripture where Jesus demands a full surrender to Him that includes a cross and promises persecution. But this is what following Jesus actually means. Nothing more. Nothing less. Nothing else. There is a cost for following Jesus – a cost that cannot be superseded by anyone or anything else. (Mark 8:34-38)
May God grant to reader and writer alike the ability to live in such a way that clearly reveals in word and deed that Jesus is not just a religious hobby with a shelf full of counterfeit gods, but Lord of all. Selah