Matthew 19:23-26 NRSVue

23Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly I tell you, it will be hard for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven. 24Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” 25When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astounded and said, “Then who can be saved?” 26But Jesus looked at them and said, “For mortals it is impossible, but for God all things are possible.”

Some thoughts on this scripture

It is not so much the size of my bank balance that you are warning me against, Lord. It is my attachment to riches. I remember Dr Johnson's comment as he was shown over a luxuriously appointed castle: /These are the things that make it difficult to die./ What would I find hard to leave? People or things?

There is high drama in the statement of Jesus about passing through the eye of a needle. Obviously Jesus does not mean it to be taken literally. He is highlighting a truth about wealth: it can ruin us. Don't we know people who were not improved by wealth or a notable improvement in their standard of living? Wealth can leave us mistrustful of others, mean or shifty. It can also be a means of serving others and of being generous. To give away some money or possessions regularly is a good way of ensuring that wealth never ensnares us.