Then who can be saved?
When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “One thing you still lack. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” But when he heard these things, he became very sad, for he was extremely rich. Jesus, seeing that he had become sad, said, “How difficult it is for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God! For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” Those who heard it said, “Then who can be saved?” But he said, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.”
I have heard this issue framed this way: "The problem is not if you own things but whether or not the things own you". This man's wealth owned him and he was devastated when he heard Jesus tell him to sell all of it and give it to the poor. On the outside this man had much wealth but inwardly he was destitute. The offer that Jesus made him was good for him now and in the future. Treasure in heaven is never just about wealth in the afterlife. We can experience it today.
Interesting to hear how his listeners also reacted. I wonder if these also were owned by their things? It seems a bit strange to hear Jesus speak about the rich being saved as some sort of miracle. In a sense, it is miraculous every time a person says yes to the Holy Spirit. Yet I think that there is something special when a person, like an addict, is miraculously delivered from the chains that have bound them for so long. The wealthy can be saved with a simple yes.
Help me today Lord to let go of the things that bind me to this earth.