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Lazarus and the Rich Man - Luke 16:19-21

Lesson # Lazarus and the Rich Man - Luke 16:19-21
Study Material - Lazarus and the Rich Man - Luke 16:19-21

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Lazarus and the Rich Man
Luke 16:19-21

19 [de] There was [en] a certain [tis] rich [plousios] man [anthropos] , which [kai] was clothed [endidusko] in purple [porphura] and [kai] fine linen [bussos] , and fared [euphraino] sumptuously [lampros] every [kata] day [hemera] :
20 And [de] there was [en] a certain [tis] beggar [ptochos] named [onoma] Lazarus [Lazaros] , which [hos] was laid [ballo] at [pros] his [autos] gate [pulon] , full of sores [helkoo] ,
21 And [kai] desiring [epithumeo] to be fed [chortazo] with [apo] the crumbs [psichion] which [ho] fell [pipto] from [apo] the rich man's [plousios] table [trapeza] : moreover [alla] [kai] the dogs [kuon] came [erchomai] and licked [apoleicho] his [autos] sores [helkos] . KJV-Interlinear

19 'Now there was a certain rich man, and he habitually dressed in purple and fine linen, gaily living in splendor every day. 20 'And a certain poor man named Lazarus was laid at his gate, covered with sores, 21 and longing to be fed with the crumbs which were falling from the rich man's table; besides, even the dogs were coming and licking his sores. NASB

The Pharisees who are actual people, are associated with other groups such as the Sadducees, the scribes, and the elders. These designations represent those people who are in leadership and support positions. These groups are people who enjoy the pleasures of the world through their positions of power, status, and wealth.

They are self serving people who use the government and religion of man in order to obtain and maintain their power and the life styles they enjoy in this life.

Once they have the reigns of government (power) they proceed to empower themselves and those around them by creating regulations which keep the common man in a position of dependence. The actual leaders utilize not only their own kind but they reinforce their positions of power and authority by empowering others through contractual relationships. This creates a neat and tight little community of 'elite's' which usurp the productivity of the common classes.

When truth comes along, then their positions of power and authority are threatened. They (Pharisees, et al.) become concerned and they proceed to destroy by any means, that which threatens their way of life. If truth begins to erode into their domain, then their attitude turns to ridicule, then accusation, then rage and criminal activity or violence of some sort. And such is the pattern of evil rulership throughout the ages.

Jesus has been giving instruction on a daily basis. He has been performing miracles, the nature of which no man alive has ever seen. He taught from the scriptures and added nothing to them, nor did He take anything away from them.

Yet His words were met with indifference and ridicule.

The seriousness of mans life is not in view. The seriousness of ones decisions in life affect ones future, after ones death. The question for determining ones future is a very simple one, 'What think you of Christ?' To this you only have to believe in Christ in order to be saved from certain destruction and a terrible eternity. To reject Christ, requires a conscious effort to 'not' believe. That would be more difficult than to believe.

John 3:16-18
16 'For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. 17 'For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him. 18 'He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. NASB

John 16:9
9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in Me; NASB

Why are people condemned? Because they do not believe in Jesus Christ. This parable begins to unfold with the grace of God which is always set before us and in opposition to it is the terrible destiny which awaits anyone who rejects Gods gospel (believing in Jesus Christ).

The tendency of man is to recognize wealth as blessing and poverty as cursing, and that could not be further from the truth. The state of ones soul is far more important than the state of ones pocketbook.

Here we see a rich man and a poor man. The rich man is representative of the superficial wealth of the world. It is vain, temporary, and feeds only the body and ones ego. The rich man dressed his body rather than his soul. He fed his body rather than his soul. The purple and fine linen and the gourmet foods paint a picture of luxurious living.

Nothing wrong with these things per se, but when God is excluded from the life, then these things (indulgence in ones personal life) only serve as distractions away from the spiritual side of life and they tend to aggravate ones attitude (prejudice) toward others in a negative way.

The rich man is given no name. When one lives through ones entire life rejecting God all the way, then ones destiny is into oblivion where there will be no identity either for self, or for others. Others will not even be in ones future - no social life, but absolute aloneness - forever.

The rich man lived in luxurious splendor, but that will not be enough to save Him from a terrible eternity.

The poor man on the other hand, had a name, Lazarus, meaning 'God the helper.' He was poor, helpless, and riddled with disease and pain. This represents mans condition without God in this world. Man is in a total state of helplessness. And the world is not kind to helpless man.

Lazarus was helped from door post to door post by others as he could not get about by himself. Others had laid Him at the gate of the rich man. He sits helplessly and patiently waiting for just a few crumbs that might fall his way from the jungle environment of the rich mans table.

The rich man had an indifferent attitude toward Lazarus, but even the dogs who are but animals, had some mercy toward Him as they licked 'clean' the sores giving Him some relief from his condition.

Despite the situation that Lazarus found himself in - living in an unfriendly world - he looked to God for his support in this world, and in the hereafter.

The rich man looked to no one but his own wealth and status in life among others who lived as he lived. All walked past the poor man with total disregard for his condition. The rich man was wealthy in the things of this world, but poor in soul. Lazarus was poor in the things of this world, but rich in his soul with doctrine. Despite his state of poverty, he still had access to Gods Word and spiritual growth which does not depend on anything from this world.

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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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