Recorded in Matt. 16:19-22, Christ is met with a seeker, asking how to inherit eternal life. His immediate response is somewhat shocking: rather than launching into the Gospel, or saying “I love you and have a wonderful plan for your life,” Jesus goes directly to the Law – “Keep the commandments.” The result: it became clear to the young man that, no matter how good he had been, he failed the test (certainly the First Commandment, as he had another god in his wealth). As he went away sorrowing, the record implies that Jesus said no more.
Why didn’t He follow up with an explanation of the Good News? Simply this: until we have a true sense of the “Bad News” (Rom. 3:23 – all have sinned), we cannot understand the “Good News” (Eph. 2:8 – saved by grace).
“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” – Rom. 5:8