This course is a study of some New Testament people. A study of a rich young man who refused to follow the Lord. A study of a small man who climbed a tree to see Jesus. Studies of the Apostle Paul who was one of the greatest men to ever serve the Lord. Finally a study about you and your life. The purpose of this study is to teach you to compare your life with people in the Bible. You will study about great men who are good examples for Christians. There should be a time after a person is saved that he gives or dedicates his life to God. The need in the deaf world today is for the saved deaf people to be good Christians and teach others to be the same. The greatest testimony to the world is a changed consistent Christian life. In all of this world there is only one you. You cannot decide for others, but you can decide for yourself. Only you can decide what you will do with your life. The choice is yours. This course can help you to decide to fully give your life to serve the Lord.
A Rich Young Ruler…A Sad Story
This first story is a sad story found in Mark I0: l7-22. Please read the story before you begin this study. This young man had everything, but he was not happy. He did not have peace in his heart. The Bible does not give his name, so we will call him the Rich Young Ruler. He was rich so why was he sad? Let’s study his story and learn more about him. This young man lived during the days of Jesus. He was young, rich, and healthy, but he was not happy. He had an emptiness in his heart that money and pleasure could not satisfy. One day Jesus was passing near. The young man heard about Him. He thought about seeing Jesus and his heart beat with excitement. Then it happened! The young man saw Jesus coming in the distance. He could wait no longer. Eagerly he ran to Jesus. He knelt before Jesus and looked up into His face. He asked a question from his troubled heart. He asked, “Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?” Jesus looked at the young man and asked him about the Ten Commandments. He asked the young man about adultery and about honoring his father and mother. He asked him about other commandments. “Do not steal.” “Do not kill.” “Do not be a false witness.” The young man thought for a few minutes and answered, “All these I have observed from my youth.”
Jesus looked into his heart. He told the young man to arise and to give all he had to the poor and to follow Him. The young man stood. He loved his riches and the things in the world. He became sad. He looked at Jesus and sadly walked away. He refused to fully give his life to the Lord. He walked away grieved (sad). He wanted true happiness, peace, and joy but he wanted his way of life more. He decided not to follow the Lord. His heart was still empty. Everyone who walks away from the Lord will be sad. There is no peace, hope or joy without the Lord.
This young man had riches, youth, and a future before him, but he never knew real peace or joy in his heart. This is a sad story. Today, people ask questions such as, “Why am I Here? What is the true meaning of life?” The Rich Young Ruler made the wrong decision. He said “no” and walked away from the best life he could have known. Many people are also searching for true peace and happiness. Some try to find happiness in money, mansions, and material things; but it is not there. Others seek true happiness in drugs, sex, and fame. Happiness is not in these “things.” “Things” can give you happiness and pleasure for a short time, but when it is finished, all that remains is an empty heart. When the Rich Young Ruler walked away from Jesus Christ, he became sad in his heart. Everyone who walks away from the Lord will always be sad.
Many Sad People
Many people feel if only they could win the lottery or Readers Digest’s five million dollars then they would truly be happy. But money and things never bring true satisfaction within the soul and heart. Mr. Howard Hughes, a billionaire, was at one time the wealthiest man in the world. When he was asked if he was happy, he said, “No, I am not happy.” His great wealth did not give him true happiness. True happiness and peace is not in fame and popularity. Happiness is not in Hollywood. Nothing in this world can fill the emptiness that God has placed within man. Many people are unhappy as this rich young ruler. “Things” do not bring lasting happiness. The best things in life are not things!
True Happiness and Joy
Money, fame, popularity and the world do not give true happiness. Where is true happiness? True happiness, peace and joy come from God. You cannot buy it or work for it. It is a free gift from God. Every person has an emptiness in his heart. Some people try to fill the emptiness with worldly pleasures, but the heart remains empty. Only God can fill the emptiness within your heart. “For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness” [Psalm 107:9].
Drugs, sex, liquor, fame, fortune, and worldly pleasures cannot satisfy the hungry soul of man. Only God can satisfy your soul. True happiness is to know that you are right with God. Come to God and ask Him to save you and forgive you of your sins. The word saved means that you have received Jesus Christ as your Saviour. When a person prays and accepts Jesus, he is saved from Hell. The word saved means saved from Hell. When a person is saved, then the Lord gives him peace in his heart. He knows he is going to Heaven and not Hell. True happiness begins when a person is saved. The fear of Hell is gone.
My Personal Testimony – When I was a young man just out of the navy, I thought I did not need God or anyone. One day, I met a very beautiful girl named Carlene. She soon became my sweetheart. Carlene loved to go to church, but not me. I thought church was for sissies. Then one night, Carlene’s mother talked to me. She told me that if I wanted to date Carlene, then I must go to church with her. I promised her that I would go to church. I thought I knew all about life and did not need the church. But as I went to church God and listened to the preacher. The Lord touched my heart. For the first time I knew my life was empty and I needed to accept Jesus Christ as my Saviour. Finally, I went forward to accept Christ. I prayed and asked the Lord to save me. For the first time, I had real peace in my empty heart. That night I also promised the Lord that all my life would now belong to Him. I walked away glad instead of sad. The Lord saved me. I am still very thankful for my changed life. (…continue next page)