HOST: Ron House
“There was a rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate was laid a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who desired to be fed with what fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover, even the dogs came and licked his sores. The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried, and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus at his side. And he called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in this flame.’ But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner bad things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who would pass from here to you may not be able, and none may cross from there to us.’ And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father’s house— for I have five brothers—so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.’ But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ And he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’ ”
What happens when we die? It is a question that so many ask and want to understand. In this text, Jesus gives us a rare glimpse into those things that lay beyond this life and world. In this story, we see the wealthy man who lived extravagantly on earth, but had not prepared himself for eternity. His riches and notoriety were of no benefit to him as he lifted up his eyes in torment. We also see the story of Lazarus, a man who had nothing in this life, but who had stored up an eternal treasure in heaven. Jesus paints a beautiful picture of Lazarus’ soul being lovingly carried by angels into Abraham’s bosom to be comforted and cared for. This story also depicts the vast separation between those two places and the impossibility of changing one’s fate once that time has come. There is no comfort and no hope in Hades, and there is nothing that troubles in paradise. As we read these words of Jesus and consider our own lives and fate, we must ask ourselves one very important question: which story will be ours?
What element of this story stands out to you the most and why?
Don’t forget to pray and have a great day!