Re: Verse reading–Luke 16:19-31 (day three) 

“Send Lazarus to my father’s house, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them.”  If we’ve gotten it into our heads that one’s post-death circumstances after a life of selfish disregard for God and others will result in regret for a life poorly lived, this story Jesus tells should disabuse us of that notion.  The narrative clearly shows us a man who is just as self-centered and self-important now as he ever was before: “Grant me a favor; send Lazarus to serve me; accord my family special status,” etc.  Privilege is his only language.  But that was a way of thinking and living he had learned long before now.  All the years of his mortal existence had steadily formed his character, and so the way he lived life was now the way he lived death.  Is it somehow different for you?

Author: Bryan Richardson

Bryan Richardson is the Associate Pastor to Pastoral Ministries & College and Single Adults at FBCSA.

One thought on “Perseverance”

  1. This story reflects one’s habit and the values and standards that may shape how they conduct their daily lives and how they treat others who are of different social and economic status. Habit is hard to change! Habit is shaped by societal norms and social acceptance! Once it takes root, habit will stay with us for the rest of our lives and until we die!! If there is any change in habit, it is just temporary! It won’t stick. The old habit will find its way back.

    We see the two types of people in this story, the privileged and the poor. It shows the true nature in every society, more so in underdeveloped and poor countries! Two different social and economic classes; and so there are two different societal standards and values. It is common for men to judge other humans by their social and economic status and they use their own standards and values in dealing and in treating others of different class!

    In this story, money and outer appearances seem to be the things that were of values by this rich man. The rich man loved money and materialistic things to the point that he became self-centered and ignorant of the needs of the poor guy (Lazarus) whom he probably saw everyday, living a life that was less favored than a dog, in my view. Contrasting lifestyles are so apparent!

    Men may value the size of a man’s money and outward appearances; but God values what is in a person’s heart! God’s values and standards are in opposite of men’s values and standards. If we satisfy what is accepted by men, we may displease God! God is concerned for the lost, the disadvantaged and the sick while men may be concerned for how other humans think about them (e.g., righteous or sinner based on how much money and on outward appearances) and for how they live their lives in consistent with values and standards that are set by men!

    We may not observe how others live their lives but God knows and knows what is in our hearts. This story reveals that unconcerned or ignorance of the needy when we are aware and have seen with our eyes and when we can share God’s resources is sinful to God!

    A lesson learned for us here is that we all will die physically and how we live and die matters! Do we want to leave this earth and to live in God’s Kingdom or to leave this earth and to live in Hell! Which standards and values are we pursuing? God’s or men’s. And why? Each of us will have to decide!!

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