A rich man meets Jesus

Jesus tells a rich man to sell everything that belongs to him


Marion Cooper

This study is one of a series of Studies in Markís Gospel in EasyEnglish.

A word list at the end explains words with a *star by them.



Mark 10:17-22 (see Mark's Gospel in EasyEnglish)


Mark tells us that the man was very rich. Matthew tells us that the man was young (Matthew 19:20). Luke tells us that he had power to rule (Luke 18:18). The man asked Jesus 'What must I do so that I can get *eternal life?' Eternal life is life that never ends. It begins on earth and it continues in *heaven with God. We cannot do something special to get it and we cannot pay money for it. It is a valuable gift from God. The man said that Jesus was good. Jesus told him that only God is good. But Jesus did not say that he was bad.

Godís rules are called 'the *commandments' (Exodus 20:3-17). Some of them are about the way that we live with other people. Some of them are about how we should show love to God. The man said that he had always obeyed those rules. He thought that he was a really good person. Jesus loved the man. Jesus told him what else he needed to do. The man had lots of money. It was very important to him. But the first of God's rules says that God must be most important in our lives. The man needed to decide what to do. When God gives people the gift of eternal life they are very happy. They will be happy always. But the man loved money more than he loved God. He could not receive the gift.

Questions to ask

V17†† The man ran to Jesus and went on his knees. What does that tell us about the man?

V17†† Did the man think that he would certainly get eternal life?

V17†† How can people have eternal life?

V18†† We know that Jesus is good. Jesus said that God alone is good. So what can we learn from that?

V19†† Jesus gave a list of some commandments. Why are these rules important?

V20†† The man said that he obeyed the rules that Jesus spoke about. What commandments had he broken?

V21†† Why did Jesus love the man?

V21†† Why did Jesus tell the man to sell everything that he owned? Did he want the man to become poor?

V21†† What does it mean to have riches in heaven?

V22†† The man asked Jesus a question. Jesus told him what he should do. So why did the man become sad and walk away?

Something to do

Read the 10 commandments, Exodus 20:3-17.

Read Matthew 22:36-39 and Luke 10:25-28 about God's rules.

Is there anything in your life that is more important to you than God?

Words to explain

Adultery ~ when someone has sex with a person who is not their husband or wife.

Commandment ~ a rule that God gave; the ten important rules that God gave to Moses on the mountain of Sinai. You can read these rules in Deuteronomy 5:6-21.

Eternal life ~ a special and new life that a person starts when they accept Jesus. This new life will be with Jesus always.

Heaven ~ the place where people who believe in God will live with Jesus after they die. It is God's home.