As an answer to a certain man’s question, Jesus responded with a statement lead by a question. I think that Jesus was making the attempt to show this certain man his heart. And if Jesus shows us what is in our hearts; then He has, right then, given us the best opportunity ever!
“(For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)” (2 Corinthians 6:2)
Deity – the quality or state of being divine: divinity
Deify – to put in place as a god to be worshipped
As a man, Jesus asked the young man what was the motive behind his statement, and also what truly made him worthy of his request, i.e. eternal life. This young man could only see Jesus as a sufficient Teacher, but not as a Saviour. He thought that he should be afforded eternal life because of the quantity of his works, and not the quality; on the consistency, but not on comparison for them. As a man, this certain young man had placed his faith in his own social-worldly position and his worldly possessions.
This certain man had placed Jesus in a common category of one being able to lead him to eternal life, but not as The One able to give eternal life. His position for Jesus was one not of Deity. He saw Jesus through his carnal, or natural, eyes. And Jesus did not deny being good or being God. (Philippians 2:6) “Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God.”
Jesus could not deny Himself. But He had to be obedient in glorifying the Father above Himself. And when the Holy Spirit was to come, then He was the one who would glorify “The Son.” Jesus says in John 12:49-50:
“For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. (50) And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.”
In our text passage of Matthew, Chapter 19, see verse 21: “Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.”
There is no doubt in my mind that if this certain man, who claimed to have kept the commandment of God, had kept (obeyed) the command of Jesus; then he would have gained Eternal Life, having the love of God shed abroad in his heart. Thus proving the Deity of Jesus Christ, “the Son of the Living God”! (See Matthew 16:16; John 6:69.)