by Pastor Joshua Pfeiffer
Click here to download your printable verse to carry with you today.
And everyone who has left houses, brothers, sisters, father, mother, children or fields, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold, and will inherit eternal life (Matthew 19:29).
At the time of writing, interest rates in Australia are extremely low, so cash savings aren’t growing at all. Those in managed funds might be doing a bit better, and those with real estate could be experiencing some decent growth. But how would you like a one-hundredfold return on your investment? This is exactly what Jesus promises in this verse above when it comes to the spiritual order of faith and eternal life.
The verse comes at the end of the account of the rich young man who comes to Jesus wanting eternal life. He leaves sad because Jesus calls him to sell his many possessions and give the money to the poor. Evidently, this man’s wealth was his real god, and as much as he endeavoured to keep the other commandments, Jesus’ focus on the first commandment was his undoing. Then follows the disciples’ amazement and the discussion about the impossibility of the rich entering the kingdom of heaven, except with God for whom all things are possible.
Peter picks up on the vocabulary of finances and investing as he asks about what they will have for following him. For modern Christians, it can be striking that Jesus doesn’t rebuke Peter for thinking in these terms. We tend to be suspicious of comparing our Christian faith to an investment in eternity. But this is precisely the way Jesus speaks. He promises his disciples that following him is the wisest possible investment. It results in a pay-off one can hardly imagine. It’s almost as if Jesus knows we are wired to think and act in this way. The issue then is not if you invest with the hope of a future return, but it’s what, or better whom, you invest in for a return that truly lasts.
Following Jesus does require sacrifices. Sometimes it can even mean leaving homes and family in one sense or another. Jesus wants to encourage you in this – that it’s all worth it. It’s more than worth it. It’s a wise investment, and your true inheritance is eternal life with him.
Heavenly Father, thank you that all things are possible with you, even my salvation. Lead me by your Spirit to leave behind what I need to follow Jesus and invest wisely for the life of the kingdom of heaven. In Jesus’ name, Amen.