ONE Clear Message
One Clear Message
After Jesus told the parable of the rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31), there were many lessons to be gathered: Selfishness, selflessness, role reversal, judgment, warnings from the grave, poor management of worldly goods, listening to God, and comfort in the arms of the Lord.
One clear message we hear are the punishments, rewards, blessings, or cursings in life connected with the choices we make.
Although being poor does not guarantee you will receive eternal blessings with God, there is not implied a selfish demand by Lazarus to his “rights” to be fed each day. There is every reason to believe the humble death of Lazarus gave him the blessing of relief from suffering and his daily search for food. Eternally, his blessings were being carried by the angels into the comforting bosom of Abraham.
Opposite of Lazarus is a rich person who claims ownership of his own life and refuses to be denied that right. Such arrogance leads to choices that are self-destructive. The law the rich man lived opposite to would be the command of Deuteronomy 15:11, “For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore I command you, ‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor, in your land.” As a result of this man’s accumulation of all the “good things in his lifetime”, he lifted up his eyes after dying to an eternal, tormented suffering.
Not only did God deliver judgment to these two men. Before their death, He gave the one clear message. Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4). Abraham showed this to the rich man who wished his brothers could hear testimony from Lazarus to prevent them from being delivered to torment. Luke 16:31 says, “If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, if one rise form the dead”.
God spoke clearly and did not conspire to be silent to one while speaking to another. God’s one clear message was spoken through Moses and the prophets and now through Jesus Christ (Hebrews 1:1,2;
2 Peter 1:20,21). If you are looking for something more direct from God or accuse God of silence, the message is clear. If the Father appeared and spoke with us face to face, His words would have no more weight in our hearts than the ones He has already spoken.
We hear plenty. We hear so much temptation every day. We could hear promises, truth, mercy, grace, and compassion. We could hear deliverance from suffering and sin. Listen for the one clear message. The pride of the rich man and the humility of Lazarus warn us and bless us from the grave. Will we listen?!