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re: Lazarus, the parable of the rich man and the beggar

Discussion in 'Bible Study' started by C1oudwatch3r, Sep 29, 2014.

  1. Someone quoted to me once the following, when I asked them if accepting foodbank benefits is considered begging:
    Psa 37:25 I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.
    I got the impression that they felt that yes, it was begging to accept foodbank food.

    Then I asked if Lazarus, the beggar who died and went to heaven, was not considered righteous. Again, I was referred to the Pslam 37:25. I still do not know if Lazarus was righteous even though he was begging.

    Also, do you think the parable of Lazarus and the rich man to be literally true as well as metaphorically true? This is the only parable in which Jesus actually mentions the name of a person. The reason I ask is because if it is literal and really did take place, then that would mean the conversation between Abraham and the rich man would be true, and that there is really a chasm between they cannot cross but can apparently see/hear/talk to each other.

    I would be grateful for any input and views.
  2. You read the word of God, what do you care what men think? What specifically are you asking? Is the word of God true? Yes. Did the conversation occur? Yes. Hard times fall on His people because of sin, theirs and those of others. Does that make Psalms a contradiction? No, David only stated HE never witnessed the event. Nothing more, nothing less. David took the showbread. Was he in destitute? Why did he eat the bread that belonged to God and didn't wait for his servants to feed him?
    Big Moose and C1oudwatch3r say Amen and like this.
  3. Very good point!
    Abdicate likes this.
  4. This 'parable' is unique because it uses names: "Lazarus" and "Abraham" (unlike other parables with no persons named); notice that the 'rich man's' name is forgotten / 'blotted out' because he did not enter into the Kingdom...

    Very interesting if you ask me...I don't believe this is just another parable...in my humble opinion...
    C1oudwatch3r and Abdicate say Amen and like this.
  5. I believe it's a parable, so it didn't actually occur.

    I don't think there is any issue with taking food bank food. They are giving the food away so I would think it's the same as a church that gives food to the poor in the congregation. I also believe that righteous people encounter hard times. If it were true that true Christians didn't have horrible hardships, like having to beg, then I definitely wouldn't be considered a true Christian. Although I never begged, I was probably could have if things had just gotten a bit worse.
    Phoneman777 likes this.
  6. There is an argument to be made for begging being out of God's will. But with rejecting the foodbank food there is a stronger argument that can be made and that is that we shall not tempt God. How is rejecting food when hungry not tempting Him?

    I believe the rich man and Lazarus was literal. For me it is from lateral thought. 1. Jesus talks about a hell elsewhere. Hence He knows we will closely read any parable or statement made by Him on the subject of our potential eternal demise. 2. Jesus uses an actual name and Jesus does not lie. He could have said ''Joe soap'' / an obvious fictitious name.
    Major and C1oudwatch3r say Amen and like this.
  7. I agree with your logic.
    Major likes this.
  8. Dear Cloud. IMO the passage about Lazarus is NOT a parable at all IMHO. I know many will not accept that and that is OK with me, but it is what I have understood all along. I say that because just as you have said, Jesus uses "proper" names in His teaching. If it was a metaphor or a parable He would not have done so. REAL names of REAL people indicate that it was a REAL event given to us to show the horror of eternal damnation.

    Isn't it interesting that the circumstances of the rich man and Lazarus are exactly reversed after death. The rich man, who lived in luxury, now lived in agony. He was distant from Abraham’s bosom, but was aware of what was taking place there. Lazarus, who had suffered greatly in his life now was in bliss. While he had struggled in order to get the scraps from the rich man’s table, now he reclined at Abraham’s table, leaning on his bosom! While it was formerly Lazarus who looked upon the bounty of the rich man, but did not share in it, now it is the rich man who beholds Lazarus in bounty and blessing.

    It would seem that the rich man’s “hell” is something like solitary confinement in a prison. There may be others there with you, but you are hardly aware of them, nor is there any real fellowship. What you are aware of is the bliss of the righteous. It is as though hell has a one-way picture window, and each resident of hell is given a pair of binoculars. The wicked are thus enabled to see the joy and bliss of the righteous, but it appears that the righteous are unaware of the suffering of the wicked.
    C1oudwatch3r likes this.
  9. Well said King.
  10. Thank you for your response. I have thought this parable is a true story related by Jesus as well, for the same reasons you post. There are several truths to be gleaned from this parable, especially when we recognize it as a true story. A description of hell, the chasm between Heaven and hell, Abraham being able to talk to someone in hell (perhaps that was a one-time deal....), and the fact that people in hell can see people in Heaven. I wish my friend could see this story differently.
  11. As do I. Pray for them my dear and allow the Holy Spirit to peak to their hearts.
  12. Hard to understand how someone would think accepting food from a foodbank is anything like begging. Begging is asking for something from anyone who may or may not have it, and might not give it even if they have it. A food bank exists for the express purpose of providing food for those who need it. It is actually the opposite of begging, since those providing the food are searching for those who may need it.
    C1oudwatch3r and Major say Amen and like this.
  13. Interesting last verse:
    30 And he said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ 31 But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.’
    Seems to be a little foreshadowing of those who do not believe even after Jesus rises from the dead.
    Major and Abdicate say Amen and like this.
  14. That's a perspective I've never come across and you are right! Not only are the needy getting blessed, but so are the providers. Begging would be like standing with a sign which says "Need money or food" at the on ramp of a busy highway. I think those are professional beggars for the most part; but I'm sure there are some who really do need help.
    Major likes this.
  15. I agree 100% with you my friend.

    We have a food bank at our church for the express act of reaching out and helping those who have fallen on bad times regardless of why.
    We as a church made the decision that no child of a family should go hungry for any reason.

    The real problem I have seen is pride in those that need help but are not willing to ask for it.
  16. This parable, when connected to the directive that the first shall be last and the last shall be first in the kingdom, also shows us that those who have been treated unfairly in this life, whether disease ridden or death of a child, will be in the kingdom.
    C1oudwatch3r likes this.
  17. Yes, I see pride getting in the way of people who do really need this help. It is soooo hard for someone who has been confident in their self-sufficiency to suddenly face real hardship (for any reason, as mentioned earlier; i.e. their own sin, circumstances beyond their control, or just errors in judgment making life decisions). The condemnation felt by these people must be hard to bear!

    Last year, I took a friend to a foodbank (he is legally blind from diabetes and unable to drive himself), and he noticed there were several people pulling up in VERY nice cars. He made a condemning statement that he could not understand how people who obviously had more funds than himself could possibly justify taking food "from those who needed it more". I was a little taken aback because I had never seen this side of him before, and I pointed out that our current economy has indeed caused many to lack cash flow for food, but they still had assets from more prosperous times. I wondered what he wanted these people to do...sell their cars and not have the means to look for work?
    Big Moose likes this.
  18. I can tell you that hard times can cause people to say things we never thought that we would here. Pressure and stress will cause the same thing.
  19. Yes, I agree...I'm learning what it means to extend grace to others instead of taking offense like I used to. Because He extended the MOST grace to me!
    Abdicate and Big Moose say Amen and like this.
  20. Amen sis!

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