The Parables #118

The rich man and Lazarus, Pt3. 

Scripture: Luke 16:19-31.

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The circumstances of men in this world differ greatly. One may have an abundance of this world’s goods while another is bereft of such luxuries! Yet if you were to measure these two men by such things how wrong you would be! The one surrounded by earth’s bounty went to hell while the poor beggar went to heaven!

We must not measure a man’s true condition by outward appearances! Consider how Paul the apostle was viewed by men. “We are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day,” 1 Corinthians 4:13. Paul says that the world considers him as something akin to that which you would ‘scrape off your shoe’! Yet he was one of God’s great men, a prince of the Kingdom of God! His influence and witness have pointed millions to the unsearchable riches of salvation!

Men need to be taught about the deceitfulness of riches! 

“He that trusteth in his riches shall fall: but the righteous shall flourish as a branch,” Proverbs 11:28.

“Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? for riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven,” Proverbs 23:5. “And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God,” Mark 10:23-25.

RICHES are a great deceiver and many spend their life seeking them and miss heaven and find themselves eternally in hell as a consequence. Remember the parable of the ‘Sower’ in Luke 8! “And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection,” verse 14. The Saviour warns of the ‘choking’ power of riches. They can ‘choke off’ the precious influences of the Gospel and rob a man of heaven! That is the theme of this parable.

“Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy,” 1 Timothy 6:17

A right understanding of the true value of this world’s riches will have eternal benefits.

“And saying, Alas, alas, that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls! For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off,” Rev 18:16-17.

Here is true riches and how they may be obtained. “For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich,” 2 Corinthians 8:9. If we receive the crucified Saviour we are rich indeed!