Dying To Live – Mark 10 – The Rich Young Ruler


What in Life do you prize the Most?


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Sermon Notes:

Mark 10:17-31

English Standard Version (ESV)

The Rich Young Man


An american millionaire who had been born into poverty and whose money was now his idol, after showing his extravagant mansion and beautiful property to a devoutly christian man, said: ” And the almighty dollar has done it all! What cant money do?” “Ah friend.” replied the religious man, “you remind me of the israelites who worshiped the golden calf, saying it brought them out of the land of Egypt. In reality, it hindered rather than helped them in their journey to the promised land, and maybe your dollars will do the same for you.” 

Idols – we dont often talk about idols because we dont believe that we worship idols in our culture. 

define : IDOL

old school idols:


an image or representation of a god used as an object of worship.

Modern Idols:


a person or thing that is greatly admired, loved, or revered.

“movie idol Robert Redford”

hero, star, superstar, icon, celebrity

Maybe Idol Worship is more common than we think.

Lets dive into our bible story beginning in 

verse 17, Chapter 10 of Mark:

17 And as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 18 And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. 

Many of us today are Dying to live. In our culture when we believe that we really really want something we say, i dying for … this or that…

Like a man wandering through a desert, desperate for a drop of water.

so we are as we come to Jesus when we realize our eternal need to be saved (John 3) 

We really really want to make our life count here on this side of eternity.

We really really want to get to heaven when we die. 

And so we come like this man, dying to know the answer to the very same question that everyone asks in their heart:

“What must I do to get to heaven?”

19 You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’”


20 And he said to him, “Teacher, all these I have kept from my youth.” 21 And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, 

John 3:16

“For this is how God loved the world, that He gave His only son, so that whoever believes in Him, should not perish, but have eternal life.”

Jesus Loved him…. but he like all of us must be born again on Gods terms.

Galatians 5:24

And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires…

and said to him, “You lack one thing: go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” 22 Disheartened by the saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.

23 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!” 

You see some of us will not die to ourselves and give up our past, our addictions, our hang-up, our idols… our sin.

therefore we are not dying to live, but we are living to die. 

The choices we make in this life to reject God will kill us forever. we will not receive eternal life. we will not go to heaven.

We want to go to heaven, but we dont want to obey God. 

God tells us that in order to get to Him we must repent and live the new life by the spirit.

John the Baptist said to, “Bear fruit in keeping with repentance!”

24 And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how difficult it is[a] to enter the kingdom of God! 25 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.” 

You cannot enter heaven with your bag of treasures – worldly riches.

You cannot enter heaven with your self-righteous treasure.

The American Dream – “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

This world tries to tell us that our treasure and happiness is found in the things that we obtain or possess.

But this is wrong.

Happiness is the fruit of right living.

Happiness cannot be obtained by obtaining any things:





Our generation has been trained and taught that happiness is found in our material possessions. And the more we have the happier we become, and when we are no longer happy, it simply means that it’s time to upgrade our possessions. 

New phone, new clothes, bigger house, faster car, prettier girlfriend, 

taller heals, lose even more weight, get a better more expensive, 

more popular…… You fill in the blank….

And to all of this Jesus would tell us…. Sell it all… Give the proceeds to those who really need it… And not until you do this, can you follow me to heaven.

God is asking me and you to do the same thing. 

You don’t need the latest and greatest.

You don’t need that new thing.

God has already given you what you need… More than you need. Better than you deserve.

You and I don’t need more clothes to pile on top of the great clothes that we already have. 

You and I need to recognize that there are people around us who can’t afford these things and 

we who are spoiling ourselves should sell what we have and help them who are truly struggling to make ends meet. We should clothe those who need clothes. We should feed those who need food. 

Jesus is telling me: Jeremiah! Stop spoiling yourself. You don’t need more! 

Repent, sell those things, give to the poor, then you can follow Me!

That’s real faith. That’s a working faith. Faith in action.

I believe the main point here is this:

Is your real treasure here on earth? or is God your Treasure? 

If it means that you need to give some things up to really wholeheartedly follow Jesus… are you willing to do this?

Does that make you sad?

The rich young ruler was sad when heard these things…. Why?

Because he didn’t want to wait until heaven to receive treasure. He wanted to be spoiled Now. He had great possessions.

This is the wrong thing to be sad over

It is right though to be sad when we realize (and are honest with ourselves) that we have not been treasuring Jesus Christ. We have been worshiping ourselves and the things that we own or want.

In recognizing this we can finally repent and begin to Live. This is the fruitful result of dying to self.

26 And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him,[b] “Then who can be saved?” 27 Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” 28 Peter began to say to him, “See, we have left everything and followed you.” 29 Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, 30 who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life. 31 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”


In Algeria when a peasant wants to catch a monkey, he attaches a gourd to a tree. Having made an opening large enough for the monkeys hand, some nuts or rice are placed inside. In the night the monkey goes to the gourd, thrusts in his hand, and grabs the delicacy, but cannot withdraw his clenched hand. As he will not let go of his treasure, he remains there, like this until he is captured. 

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