February 8 – Gospel Readthrough – Mark 10

Read Mark 10:1-52

Have you ever been asked to look at a drawing and tell what you see? You know, the ones where 90% of people see one thing, while 10% see something completely different? Here is an example:

In order to see both pictures, you almost have to “flip a switch” in your brain.

Jesus has a way of doing that. He wants us to flip the switch to see life from His perspective. He has a way of flipping conventional thinking upside down. In Mark 10:31, Jesus tells His disciples that, those who are thought to be important now, will be the least when His eternal kingdom reigns.

“But many who seem to be important now will be the least important then, and those who are considered least here will be the greatest then.”

If you are like most people, you notice important people. You hear about them on the news or read about them in books. You listen to what they say and buy what they sell. After all, they are important. They are elevated by media and respected by experts. Shouldn’t we follow their lead? Sometimes, perhaps we should follow their lead. Other times, we shouldn’t.

Earlier in the chapter, Jesus was talking with a rich young man. The man was probably a prominent, important leader in his community at the time and is described as being wealthy. Wealthy people often are from a family of wealth and enjoy privileges such as a good education and training in handling wealth. It is likely that he felt like he had achieved success here on earth and he wanted to know how to secure his future after death. He asked Jesus, “What should I do to get eternal life?” He may have expected a checklist or a yearly investment plan as a response. He was shocked when Jesus told him:

“Go and sell all you have and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

All the things that gave him worth and value on Earth would not be considered eternally valuable unless they were used to further the Kingdom of God.

Are you putting too much value on your earthly possessions? Or your wealth? Or your successes?

It is good to pause and think about this perspective. It is so different from what we are taught and led to believe in today’s world.

Jesus tells us earlier in the chapter that people who will enter the Kingdom of God must have child-like faith.

“I assure you, anyone who doesn’t have their kind of faith will never get into the Kingdom of God.”

It will not be the important, successful, highly acclaimed experts who will be entering that eternal Kingdom. It will be the people who simply believe that God is who He says He is. It will be those like the blind beggar, Bartimaeus, who call out to God in faith who will be a part of His eternal Kingdom (v. 48-52.)

Faith in God is the requirement for eternal life. Success by the world’s standard is not a factor. How are you viewing your successes in this life? Are they being used to point people to Jesus or to gain importance in others’ eyes? Do you have child-like faith? Do you believe, like Bartimaeus, that Jesus can make all the difference in your life? It’s not too late to change your perspective.

Maybe you need to flip the switch!

Tammy Finney

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