Camels and Needles

The teacher must be kidding me. Sky high, that’s what his expectations are. Sell all my possessions and give the money to the poor? Exchange everything I have for treasures in heaven? And then – *gulp* – leave everything I have and follow him down untrod dirt paths? I’m not like those fishermen he likes to hang out with. I’m not like those swindling tax collectors, not like those dusty vagabonds.

He can have that eternal life he’s talking about. Just the thought of being separated from my camels, from my horses, from my antique pottery — I can think of no greater hell than that.

I had only asked him what good thing did I have to do to inherit eternal life. He said there is only One who is good. But I could keep the commandments, he had added.

Which ones, I had inquired.

Don’t kill. Don’t take someone else’s wife. Don’t take another woman if you already have one of your own. Don’t lie. Honor your father and your mother. Love the people around you as you love you.

I have kept all of them. I could put a big check mark next to each one if anyone would ask me to.

But his final requirement is far too difficult.

A camel would find it easier to enter through the eye of the needle, you know.


Based on Matthew 19: 16-22

23 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “I tell you the truth, it is very hard for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. 24 I’ll say it again—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!” 25 The disciples were astounded. “Then who in the world can be saved?” they asked. 26 Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.”

Matthew 19: 23-26 (New Living Translation)


4 thoughts on “Camels and Needles”

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