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Lazarus and the Rich Man - Luke 16:15-18

Lesson # Lazarus and the Rich Man - Luke 16:15-18
Study Material - Lazarus and the Rich Man - Luke 16:15-18

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Lazarus and the Rich Man
Luke 16:15-18

15 And [kai] he said [epo] unto them [autos] , Ye [humeis] are [este] they which justify [dikaioo] yourselves [heautou] before [enopion] men [anthropos] ; but [de] God [theos] knoweth [ginosko] your [humon] hearts [kardia] : for [hoti] that which is highly esteemed [hupselos] among [en] men [anthropos] is [esti] abomination [bdelugma] in the sight [enopion] of God [theos] .
16 The law [nomos] and [kai] the prophets [prophetes] were until [heos] John [Ioannes] : since [apo] that time [tote] the kingdom [basileia] of God [theos] is preached [euaggelizo] , and [kai] every man [pas] presseth [biazo] into [eis] it [autos] .
17 And [de] it is [esti] easier [eukopoteros] for heaven [ouranos] and [kai] earth [ge] to pass [parerchomai] , than [e] one [mia] tittle [keraia] of the law [nomos] to fail [pipto] .
18 Whosoever [pas] putteth away [apoluo] his [autos] wife [gune] , and [kai] marrieth [gameo] another [heteros] , committeth adultery [moicheuo] : and [kai] whosoever [pas] marrieth [gameo] her that is put away [apoluo] from [apo] her husband [aner] committeth adultery [moicheuo] . KJV-Interlinear

15 And He said to them, 'You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of men, but God knows your hearts; for that which is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God. 16 'The Law and the Prophets were proclaimed until John; since then the gospel of the kingdom of God is preached, and every one is forcing his way into it. 17 'But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one stroke of a letter of the Law to fail. 18 'Every one who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery; and he who marries one who is divorced from a husband commits adultery. NASB

We need to remind ourselves that Christ was performing miracle after miracle for crowds of thousands on a daily basis. Yet the Pharisees still denied His obvious identity. They rejected his authority despite his obvious power over nature and all aspects of the environment and the human condition. They turned their noses up to the truth of life because it contradicted what they wanted to believe and it was inconsistent with their objectives of life.

The Pharisees wanted their positions of power, and authority, and prestige which they received from the masses of people round about them. Even though they considered the people as common and beneath their own status in life.

They used the Law of Moses and the Prophets (the Old Testament scriptures) as a prop in order to bring justification to their chosen pattern of life. And so the common thread which runs between all these parables is mans rejection of truth and the subsequent substitution of mans invented truth in its place. This makes it very easy for a person to justify anything which is convenient to his life.

If he wants to live together rather than marrying, then that is ok. If he wants to divorce for whatever reason, then that is ok. If he wants to commit crimes, then that is ok. If he wants to believe some other religion or philosophy, then that is ok. If he wants to superimpose all sorts of regulatory rules on the people, then that is ok. Man can justify anything from telling little white lies to committing genocide if he perceives that he has the right and the means or opportunity to do it.

So what does all of this really mean? If you ignore Bible doctrine in your life, then you have the only other source available to you for forming your opinions of life and that source is the worlds view toward life. There are only two opinions in this universe - Gods opinion which comes from the Word of God and from which the only clear view of truth concerning the things of life are found, and then there are all the other opinions of the world which are Satan founded or lies at best. From these there is never any clear discernment of truth and when truth is gone, then everything of value is gone.

Man cannot invent nor discover truth for himself. Only God can provide truth. And truth can only be obtained from a daily study of the Bible. Certainly there is a lot of influence from the Bible out there in the world and that brings some form of truth into the lives of people and therefore some basis for stability such as law and order or basic honesty, for example, but that is not enough to prevent the eventual decline of a society.

The Pharisees were more impressed with their own wisdom, just as any negative person is, by default, more impressed by whatever it is he believes in life.

The Pharisees led the belief of the day, that entrance into the 'good' life or into heaven was by means of adhering to the regulations of Judaism. Then John the Baptist came along and began the teaching of the Kingdom of God through repentance (changing ones mind, believing in the Savior, growing up spiritually by faith), and that just contradicted all that the Pharisees stood for.

The long lines began to develop around John because the Pharisees (and all the Jewish leadership) had long neglected the legitimate teaching of the scriptures. It was more profitable to sell sacrificial animals than to teach fundamental doctrine, salvation, grace, and so forth.

Though try as they may, Jesus explains here that it will be much easier for the universe to fall apart, than it will be to change the scriptures. Obviously we can look up the night sky and knowing what we know of the universe, none of us can change even one atom of its structure. So trying to change the scriptures which come from God, can never be accomplished by anything that man might try to invent or pretend.

Politicians will try, leaders will try, people of the common classes will try, but no adopted belief or attitude will ever replace truth as the ultimate foundation upon which life sits.

Just as no one can change the universe which would be a very dramatic accomplishment even if it could be done, so too, the very simple act of divorce which is within the actions of mankind is still not a solution to ones problems.

Back in those days, divorce could be had on the basis of a burned meal. Not a very good example of an 'until death do us part' vow.

If marriage is not looked upon with any degree of value, then Gods Word will obviously take a back seat to many kinds of justifications in life. Now these verses are not a dissertation on the subject of divorce but an illustration of just how low priorities will fall when Gods Word is not included in ones life.

The ultimate relationship in ones lie is that between yourself and Gods Word. This results in spiritual growth and its goal is to make you complete. Just as a man and a woman come together in marriage to make them as one, so too, Gods Word is the masculine part of our marriage, entering into our soul and completing the uniting of the two into one.

To reject Gods word is to divorce truth. And to divorce truth means that you take up with the prostitution of lies. The former provides a complete and perfect union. The latter leads ones life to misery and disaster.

Do not get all hung up on the biological (worldly) things of life, but instead concentrate on the spiritual.

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End Of Lesson

Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.

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