8/22/2023 (Tuesday) Today’s gospel reading: Matthew 19:23-30
23 Jesus said to his disciples: “Amen, I say to you, it will be hard for one who is rich to enter the Kingdom of heaven.
24 Again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for one who is rich to enter the Kingdom of God.”
25 When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and said, “Who then can be saved?”
26 Jesus looked at them and said, “For men this is impossible, but for God all things are possible.”
27 Then Peter said to him in reply, “We have given up everything and followed you. What will there be for us?”
28 Jesus said to them, “Amen, I say to you that you who have followed me, in the new age, when the Son of Man is seated on his throne of glory, will yourselves sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
29 And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for the sake of my name will receive a hundred times more, and will inherit eternal life.
30 But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first.”
8/22/2023 (Tuesday) Today’s gospel reflection: Matthew 19:23-30
Majority of people wants to be rich. So they spend their whole life trying to acquire material possessions – houses, cars, gadgets, etc. And yes, we admire the rich and we call them successful. On the other hand, those with little possessions are ignored and many times looked down upon. Some religious leaders are notoriously on the side of the rich and shamelessly rub shoulders only with those who can donate large sums of money to their office. This is exactly the value of the world but not of Jesus. So why bother to be rich? Good question.
In the gospel reading above, Jesus is very emphatic that the rich finds it hard to enter the Kingdom of heaven. The main reason is because the road to life is narrow and only a few find it (Matthew 7:14). Thus, those with too many personal belongings find it difficult to pass through. So they will look for an easy way.
Yet we must notice that Jesus is quick to say that it is not impossible for the rich to enter the Kingdom of heaven. If the rich knew how to make use of their possessions for the greater glory of God, then they are not excluded from the Kingdom. The issue is about attachment and detachment. The rich must know that they can’t bring their material wealth to heaven. In other words, they must live their life knowing that money is not a god and that they must serve only the one and true God – our Father in heaven. They must be aware that there is no other way to heaven but the way of the cross, that means, the way of Jesus. Finally, they must be willing to pass this way.