If someone asks you, “What must I do to inherit eternal life?” you would probably tell him, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved,” wouldn’t you?
Well, a rich, young ruler asked Jesus the same question, but instead of telling him to believe in Him, Jesus gave him the law. (Mark 10:17–22)
Jesus saw that the young ruler lived his life taking pride in his ability to keep the law to earn salvation and the favor of God. But because of His love for the man, Jesus had to show him that those who live by the law must realize that their self-efforts cannot save them.
He therefore reminded him, “You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery… ‘Do not steal... ‘Honor your father and your mother.’” The young ruler showed that his trust was in his law-keeping when he replied, “Teacher, all these things I have kept from my youth.”
So Jesus had to tell him, “One thing you lack… sell whatever you have and give to the poor… and come… and follow Me.” When the young ruler heard that, he walked away sorrowful.
When we boast of having kept the law, it will always point out something we lack or have failed to obey. The law is so holy and perfect that if we don’t keep even one iota of it, it has no choice but to judge and curse us. (Galatians 3:10) That is what the law was designed to do.
God does not want us to boast in our abilities to keep the law. If we are to have confidence in anything at all, if we are to boast in anything at all, it is in the grace of God. Only His grace can completely keep, save, heal, deliver and bless us.
So let’s not boast in what we have done or are able to do, but boast in His grace for us — that He is our strength, health, favor, prosperity, wisdom, hope, salvation and glory. That is how we will see ourselves enjoying our inheritance of abundant life!