When the young rich man calls Jesus a ‘good teacher,’ Jesus immediately responds, “Only God the Father is good; why do you call Me good?”
What’s Jesus mean? He’s the Son of God! He’s perfect!
The author of Hebrews writes of Jesus learning obedience and so attaining perfection, as if Jesus is not born perfect. Jesus, after all, spends 40 days and nights in the wilderness where He is tempted by Satan himself. Jesus withstands each temptation, triumphing. In the garden of Gethsemane, again He is tempted — almost to the point of death — by Satan himself to renounce God the Father’s plan, and escape the cross of Calvary. But, Jesus withstands this ultimate temptation and prevails against evil.
If Jesus’ self-perception is that only the Father is good, how is it that any one of us feels justified to claim holiness? Rather, shouldn’t we, along with our Lord, say: “Good? Me? Why do you call me good?”
Father God, give us humility. In Jesus’ Name, amen.