The Rich Man and
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In the parable
of the rich man and Lazarus, what is said to have become of Lazarus?
"And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the
angels into Abraham's bosom." Luke 16:22.
What befell the
"The rich man also died, and was buried; and in hell he lift up his
eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his
bosom." Luke 16:22, 23.
What request did
the rich man make of Abraham?
"And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send
Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for
I am tormented in this flame." Luke 16:24.
Upon making the
request for Lazarus to be sent to his father's house to warn his brethren, what
did Abraham reply?
"Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them
hear them." Luke 16:29.
appeal did the rich man then make?
"And he said, Nay, father Abraham; but if one went unto
them from the dead, they will repent." Luke 16:30.
NOTE.-It seems that the rich
man is represented in the parable as understanding that Lazarus was dead, and
not in heaven, Said he: "If one went unto them from the dead;" as much
as to say, that such a miracle would certainly cause them to repent.
But had Lazarus
gone on such a mission, what must have taken place?
"And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither
will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead." Luke 16:31.
NOTE. - This is a plain
statement that Lazarus was dead, and in the grave. Before he could warn others,
he must rise from the dead.
When are the
"The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and
to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished." 2 Peter
When will the
judgment take place?
"I charge thee therefore before God, and the lord Jesus Christ, who
shall judge the quick and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom." 2
NOTE. - If the wicked are
reserved to the day of judgment for their punishment, and the judgment takes
place only in connection with the coming of Christ, it follows that the wicked
do not enter upon their punishment at death.
When are the
righteous to be recompensed?
"And thou shalt be blessed; for they cannot recompense thee; for thou
shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just." Luke 14:14.
When do the
angels gather the elect to Christ?
"And they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with
power and great glory. And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a
trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from
one end of heaven to the other." Matt. 24:30, 31.
NOTE. - Thus far it has been
seen that the narrative under consideration deals with physical men altogether.
Nothing is said about their souls or spirits. The parable also states
emphatically that Lazarus would have to rise from the dead in order to carry out
the request of the rich man. Now as we have also seen that the wicked do not go
to their punishment till after the judgment, and that the righteous do not go to
their reward till the coming of Christ with the angels, we are forced to the
conclusion that the Saviour used in this parable a figure of rhetoric known as
personification, a figure in which an inanimate being is represented as
animated, or endued with personality. By this form of speech Christ could
forcibly teach what would occur in the future, by representing it as already
Does God in
other places speak of things that do not exist, as though they did exist?
"(As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations) before
Him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those
things which be not as though they were." Rom. 4:17.
instances given in the Old Testament which show that the figure of
personification is a common mode of expression.
"For the stone shall cry out of the wall, and the beam out of the
timber shall answer it." Hab. 2:11 (2 Kings 14:9) (Judges 9:7-15)
Does the New
Testament sometimes use the same method?
"Behold the hire of the laborers who have reaped down your fields,
which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth." James 5:4.