The running man is eager. The kneeling man is respectful. The questioning man is sincere. He calls Jesus 'Good Teacher'. Jesus gently reminds him that, if he has an eye to eternal life, he will have to focus on the goodness of God.
But the seekers mind is distracted. He still thinks of his life in terms of behaviour and reward. Jesus reminds him of the Charter for Justice, listing the foundational good works. The seeker doesn't need reminding. He knows them and has kept them since his 'youth'. Here's the clue. Now we know we are in the company of someone who never really grew up. His religious life is only eagerness, energy and ego. Of all the ways to look at someone, gazing is probably best. So Jesus doesn't glare at him.
Then, suddenly, the Teacher suggests something new - treasure in heaven. What! Indeed, let me say it again, the seeker must value first his relationship with God, and the pathway to this is to give away his wealth to the poor. What! When he hears this he is shocked and bereaved. The disciples who have been watching this encounter are also shocked and bereaved.
So what about us? The drive to own and possess people and things is deep in all of us. At least our possessions offer the illusion of safety. But the need to stay safe has turned many to ruthless injustice and unimaginable cruelty. Instead the Teacher invites us to blend our sense of time and eternity. We must never allow what we own to own us, or to identify so fully with what we think we have that our hearts are closed to God and to those who suffer.
In the 19th century, a tourist from the States visited the famous polish rabbi Hafez Hayyim. He was astonished to see that the rabbis dwelling was a simple room filled with books. The only furniture was a table and a bench.
"Rabbi, where is your furniture?" asked the tourist.
"Where is yours?" Replied Hafez.
"Mine? But I'm only a visitor here."
"So am I," said the rabbi.