Winning the Lottery

And a ruler asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery, Do not murder, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother.’” And he said, “All these I have kept from my youth.” 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.” And Peter said, “See, we have left our homes and followed you.” And he said to them, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, who will not receive many times more in this time, and in the age to come eternal life.”
Luke 18:18–30
Winning the Lottery
We spend countless amounts of money on lottery tickets in this country. The allure of instant wealth beyond our means is a powerful aphrodisiac. We want that kind of money because we believe it will solve all our problems, gain us power and influence, and generally make our lives better. We justify the desire for wealth by telling ourselves all the great things we would do with the month to help others, and how sacrificial we would become. But wealth, works, and personal sacrifice cannot save. But, any sacrifice made for God’s kingdom is abundantly compensated in this life and in the one to come. No lottery winnings can compete with our heavenly inheritance, because heaven is our inheritance. And our loving Father bequeaths this inheritance to us by His grace alone. Yet, in generosity, He will also reward us as we care for one another here and now in this life. The blessings God gives are beyond our reach, we have them only because He has given them. By the grace of His Son, our Savior, we are lifted up to receive all He has prepared for us.
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