What good can I do to have eternal life? This question should concern us every day, and we should always ask it to ourselves and to the Lord. And think about how to organize our life, what to do in order to inherit eternal life, to become the heir of eternal goods?
“I look for the resurrection of the dead and the life of the age” — this is our hope, our faith, though we often forget this, and care as human beings on our forces, the pious, it is about today, to today not to sin and to make us better, and better was in accordance with the commandments of God. But we do not always remember that we expect the resurrection of the dead and the life of the future age. The life of the future age, eternal life — this is what we wait for and hope for, so that in this life we may remain eternally with God, with the Creator, with the Angels, and with all the saints. Our temporary life today, no matter how long, beautiful, beautiful, full of deeds, feats, victories it may be, is still a moment.
They will forget about any person, no matter how beautiful and wonderful he may be and no matter how much he may have done in this life, because it is all temporary and very fleeting, like a moment. Once upon a time, there was a man and he is not there. And everything that he did — they don’t even know about it anymore, that he did it, they don’t remember, because we are all heirs of eternal life, and whatever we do here, we must remember that there is still an infinity ahead of us, and what we are doing now is just the beginning.
“What I will create so that I may inherit eternal life” – with such words turned and one pious and God-seeking young man. He turned to Christ and called Him a Good Teacher. In these words, we see that he understood that he was not just a man because the word “good” referred specifically to the deity.
Therefore Christ says to him: “Why do you call me Good? Only God is good.” The young man seemed to hesitate, he did not say to Him, “You are the Son of God,” but he felt a special power in the Teacher, a special grace, and so addressed Him: “What should I do to receive eternal life?» The Lord says to him: “Keep the commandments” – and lists these commandments, which we, all Christians, know.
They are even known to people who do not go to Church and have not read the gospel. Almost everyone knows about these commandments: do not kill, Do not commit adultery, honor your father and mother — this is the main thing on which a person’s life is built. If a person does not know these commandments, does not observe them, then most likely he will be overtaken in this short life by collapse.
And so the young man says: “I have observed all this from a young age,” thus asking: “What else? This is already clear and close to me, and I live by it.” And then the Lord says to him: “If you want to be perfect, go and give all your possessions to the poor, and come and follow Me” – these are the conditions of perfection, not just external piety. Not just the observance of the law, but the perfection that brings us closer to eternal life, the Lord reveals to this pious young man, but he is distressed and goes away because he had a lot of riches.
This man had much material and possibly other benefits, and he was saddened at the very thought that he would have to part with them in order to become a disciple of Christ. Christ says to him: “Come and follow Me,” and we remember how He said the same thing to Matthew the publican and to the other apostles-fishermen, who immediately threw down their nets, the publican left his public-house, his work, and followed Christ.
But this pious young man did not. He’s upset, and we don’t even know his name. Thus, in his distress, he may be said to have disappeared from the Gospel story. And the Lord says to his disciples: “It is hard for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of heaven; it is easier for a camel to pass through the eyes of a needle.” And the disciples are amazed, and they say, “Then who can be saved at all?
Why are the apostles so surprised? It is because when they lived, in the Jewish people, wealth was considered a blessing of God, and now we see that in many peoples, too, primarily non — Christian, wealth is something important, something religious, they are all around it all the time. Where there is wealth, there are these people. Why is this so? Because it’s part of their faith.
And in Protestantism this is true, that is, if you are a rich man, then the Lord blesses you and loves you. The Jews and the apostles reasoned in the same way, which is why they were so surprised. Suddenly Christ completely abolishes this law, as it were, and says: “No, don’t think that someone who is rich will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but on the contrary.” This, of course, does not mean that a person who now lives and is rich enough, that he will not absolutely enter the Kingdom of heaven, and the one who does not have such estates and money, he will certainly enter.
The main thing is that a person’s wealth does not prevent him from becoming a disciple of Christ, becoming his Apostle, and following Him. And indeed, we will have to sell a great deal of our wealth in order to be saved, in the sense that we will have to get rid of everything that prevents us from coming to Christ.
And this is not only material wealth, it can be the desire for power, career, endless study, the desire for some projects so that we are praised so that we reach different heights, but the Lord does not expect us to do this. He first of all expects fidelity and love for his neighbor, following the Gospel truth. And only such people can be called his disciples and be perfect, and the Lord has called us to perfection.
Not to any average piety, but to perfection, to Holiness. And if we strive for Holiness, we will at least reach some steps in the work of our salvation. And if we do not strive for Holiness, then we will remain somewhere on the threshold of the temple of God, and the Lord will tell us: “In your streets, I preached and taught, and where were you? “and we will say,”We saw You, we knew you.” — But you didn’t do what I asked you to do, you didn’t become my disciples, you didn’t become perfect,” and the Kingdom of heaven is for perfect people, not for weak, cowardly people.
The first of September is approaching. In General, before, in Russia for many years and even centuries, this was the beginning of the year. And in general, this has been preserved, especially for family people, for parents, and most of them still belong to them. On the first of September, we start studying at school and universities, and we often try to do something new in our lives on this date.
The example of this Evangelical youth should be a very important lesson for parents, teachers, and all of us, so that our children, our young men, and the future of our Church not only learn to observe the Laws of God but also strive for perfection. So that when they grow up, and especially when different passions attack them so that they are not burdened with this estate and wealth, constantly receiving knowledge that does not relate to the gospel, so that they do not become upset and do not depart from Christ. We must teach them by our example to be faithful disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ, to be people who are being fulfilled with the promise of eternal life, and who expect the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come.