JESUS: A [very] PERSONAL SOUL WINNER
Recently a question came up within an informal discussion group I participate in as to what is revealed of Jesus' attitude toward the law in
The questioner asked if Jesus actually expect the young man to keep the law as the story SEEMS to indicate, until our Lord went on to say,
When folks approach the Bible presuming that scripture is mostly concerned with escaping hell and getting to heaven, then they read that presumption into the text over and over again, where no such issue is involved. Most certainly, salvation is a very important biblical subject, but that salvation has to do most essentially with being delivered from our soul-fragmentation, and becoming a true, whole, human being, who is "conformed to the image of God's Son." In fact, that, very specifically according to Paul in Romans 8, is our predestination.
The rich young ruler thought of himself as consistently obedient to the law, but only in terms of behavior that could be outwardly observed, not re: the condition of his heart. His kind could always reduce the demands of the law to what could be outwardly measured as obedience of a mechanical nature. The core-issue of the law is that
The obsession of the average reader of scripture, that the core-issue in scripture is always about avoiding hell and gaining heaven, causes them to read into many texts a condition or conditions that would ensure the latter, whereas, in many cases, Jesus, for instance, in a very personal way, would draw out the individual or individuals in such a way as to lead them to see their need, and not, as it were, laying out some form of "the plan of salvation." Instead, He was working with the person or persons with whom He was conversing in order very personally to initiate the process that in time would