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Lesson 8: The Rich Man & Lazarus
Brief explanatory notes
Not only did the Pharisees love money, they thought that riches were a sign of a person’s righteousness. So imagine their surprise when Jesus told this story in which a diseased beggar is rewarded and a rich man is punished.
The picture of the rich man in hell is a very sobering scene, and a real one. In life, he had been very hard-hearted and thereby cut himself off from God’s love and mercy. Now, in his horrible situation, he wants his brothers to be warned so that their destiny will be different. He is convinced that they would believe someone who resurrected from the dead. But Abraham states the grim truth: people who don’t listen to God’s Word will not listen even to someone who comes back from dead.
One of the ironies of this story is that Jesus is on His way to Jerusalem where He will die on the cross and then be resurrected from the dead. As He tells this story He knows that the religious leaders listening to Him will not believe even after He has risen.
So, have you believed? And if so, what is your attitude toward your money and possessions?