“And behold, one came and said unto Him, ‘Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?’ And He said unto him, ‘Why callest thou Me good? There is none good but One, that is, God. But if thou wilt enter into Life, keep the commandments.’ He said unto Him, ‘Which?’ Jesus said, “‘Thou shalt do no murder; thou shalt not commit adultery; thou shalt not steal; thou shalt not bear false witness;
honor thy father and thy mother; and, thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.’”
The young man said unto Him, ‘All these things have I kept from my youth up. What lack I yet?’” (Matthew 19:16-20, KJ21)
We understand that in giving precedence to certain aspects or values of our lives, we order our lives regarding the importance of one aspect or value above another. We must do this on a regular basis to have any semblance of order in functioning in our daily living and we must do this with what we value. We also must give priority in our lives to our most important intimate relationships with spouses, family or friends lest other endless demands began to dominate our time thus taking away devotion and commitment to ones we love. It seems logical then, that if we claim to be people of faith, that faith must be value that is regarded as a priority in the highest degree.
Yet giving something priority in our lives involves more than just speaking of it or listing it as a priority. Claiming anything as a significant priority involves more than words. Even willingness to invest significant dedicated time and effort into any given priority does make it a reality as a high precedent in your living.
Other things must be released in order for spoken or claimed priorities to become realities in our lives. It is in the releasing of the demanding insignificant things that the significant is ordered and elevated to the place of highest significance. Values are just token phrases unless they upheld by principled and intentioned actions. Faith without the releasing actions of loving, serving and worshipping is empty. Still there is something beyond the adhering to our priorities and the releasing of interferences and demands by our actions. In the highest place of order, regard and priority … a declared and dedicated exclusiveness must be given to any significant priority and this exclusiveness must be followed by the releasing of other things from becoming interfering encumbrances.
In marriage, our exclusiveness to our spouses is not just priority borne out in our releasing of all to the one that we love … it is exclusive abandonment of all others and an exclusive attaching to our spouse. In our faith, it is not just a setting of priorities that matters or even the releasing of time and effort that makes our faith significant. There must be an exclusive abandonment of everything else and an exclusive loving attachment above everything else to our Lord. This must be done, in order for Jesus Christ to truly be our Savior and our Lord. That exclusiveness is what the “Rich Young Ruler” missed in his forgoing of becoming a follower of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ asks us for a dedicated exclusiveness in becoming our Lord and it is in the abandonment of other things that He truly becomes our Lord and we find the life, He desires we have in Him.
“Jesus said unto him, ‘If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell what thou hast and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in Heaven; and come and follow Me.’ But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.” (Matthew 19:21-22, KJ21)
Suggested Reading … Matthew 19