We are such wretches that even a resurrected preacher would not be enough to guarantee our salvation!
Although unmentioned, this points to the coming savior – Jesus paints the problem to make us ready to hear the solution:
There is a Jesus who stooped to do what the Rich Man wouldn’t!
Jesus came to the lowly to lift them from the ash heap.
Matthew 1:21 “you shall call his name Jesus(=God saves), for he will save his people from their sins.”
Autistic boy’s mom: When I scraped my son’s faeces off the wall, God said, “Your sin was more repulsive and I cleaned you.”
2 Corinthians 8:9 “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.”
Not only does he have to have died and raised again, he has to do something to us!
Mark 10:23-27 “And Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How difficult it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus • said to them again, “Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God! 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.” And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him, “Then who can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.”
>>>surely “nothing is impossible for the power that can bring a crucified corpse back to life!”
James 2:5 “Listen, my beloved brothers, has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom, which he has promised to those who love him?”
Ephesians 2 says that God made us alive!
This then leads to a change in us to a selfless life. It is only as we despair of defeating our selfishness and come dependent on God to save us that we can ever change.
JESUS does not call for a cheap response, but desperately seeking God TRULLY seeking,…
Are we all on the right side of this divide? Have we all recognized we are by nature wretches? That we deserve nothing but wrath, that we can do nothing to save ourselves?
Are we following this Christ with all our heart? Are we sharing him with others? Are we living a selfish or a selfless life?
John Piper: “When Jesus says that a selfish spirit keeps us out of heaven, he does not mean that God watches to see if we show ourselves to be generous before he accepts us into his everlasting favor. Before we can be generous, God receives us into his favor through faith in Jesus (John 3:16). He takes us into his family as his children (John 1:12). He counts us righteous (Luke 18:14); he forgives our sins (Matt. 26:28); he gives us eternal life (John 5:24). None of these is obtained in this life by first overcoming our selfish spirit. It is the other way around. We recognize our selfish spirit and despair of overcoming it on our own and turn to Jesus as our only hope. In this turning to Jesus, we are justified, forgiven, adopted, secured in his care forever (John 10:28–30). On that basis we now make progress in overcoming our selfish spirit.”[i]
[i]Piper, J. (2006). What Jesus demands from the world (277). Wheaton, Ill.: Crossway Books.