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Humble Hero

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    Did Jesus Demand Too Much?

    The ruler, quick to understand all that Christ’s words involved, became sad. He was a member of the honored council of the Jews, and Satan was tempting him with flattering prospects for the future. He wanted the heavenly treasure, but he also wanted the advantages his riches would bring. He desired eternal life, but the sacrifice seemed too great, and he went away sorrowful, “for he had great possessions.”HH 240.5

    His claim that he had kept the law of God was a deception. He showed that riches were his idol. He loved the gifts of God more than he loved the Giver. Christ had offered the young man fellowship with Himself. “Follow Me,” He said. But the Savior was not as valuable to him as his own name in society or his possessions. To give up the seen for the unseen was too great a risk. He refused the offer of eternal life and went away. Ever after the world would receive his worship. Thousands pass through this ordeal, weighing Christ against the world, and many choose the world.HH 240.6

    Christ’s dealing with the young man contains lessons for us all. God has given us the rule of conduct that His servants must follow. It is obedience to His law—not merely a legal obedience, but an obedience that enters into the life and shows in the character. Only those who will say, “Lord, all I have and all I am is Yours,” will God acknowledge as His sons and daughters. Think of what it means to say No to Christ. The Savior offers to share with us the work that God has given us to do. Only in this way can He save us.HH 240.7

    God entrusts us with money, talents, and opportunities, that we may be His agents in helping the poor and the suffering. Those who use their entrusted gifts as God designs become co-workers with the Savior.HH 241.1

    To those like the young ruler who are in high positions and have great possessions, it may seem too great a sacrifice to give up all in order to follow Christ. But God can accept nothing short of obedience. Self-surrender is the essence of Christ’s teachings. There is no other way to save us than to cut away those things which, if we cling to them, will demoralize the whole being.HH 241.2

    When Christ’s followers give back to the Lord His own, they are accumulating treasure that they will receive when they hear the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant. ... Enter into the joy of your lord.” Matthew 25:23. The joy of seeing people eternally saved is the reward of all who put their feet in the footprints of Him who said, “Follow Me.”HH 241.3

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