Pastor Barry's "Chapter & Verse" Day 217
August 5, 2018; Luke 18:25; 62/260(III); ‘The Eye of a Needle’
Luke 18:25 For 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."
The Lord Jesus had just finished talking to the rich young ruler who wanted to know what he had to do to receive eternal life. The Lord told the ruler to keep the commandments and the ruler said that he did. Then Jesus told him to distribute his riches to the poor and come follow Jesus. When Jesus said that, the rich young ruler went away sad. The riches of the ruler had him. The Lord Jesus did not want the ruler to give all of his wealth away. Jesus wanted to see if he was willing to do this and obviously he was not. Jesus went on to say that it was hard for those who had riches to enter heaven. This is surely not because the Lord does not want them to. The problem is the importance that money has on those who are wealthy. Jesus then says that it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to go to heaven. This could not be literal and indeed it wasn’t. In the ancient walled cities, the gate in the wall would be locked at night for safety. In the gate there was a small door that could be opened to allow someone to come into the city. If a person came with a camel having their belongings on the camel, the belongings would have to be removed from the animal, the camel would kneel and enter the gate on its knees. Then the belongings could be brought in separately. The analogy is being willing to leave your valuables behind to enter heaven enables you to enter and you can have your valuables as well.