Context: Jesus is sharing the parable of the rich man and Lazarus. After the death of both men, Lazarus is in Heaven, “Abraham’s side,” and the rich man is in hell, “Hades, where he was in torment… in agony… in fire.” The rich man cries out to Abraham and asks him to send Lazarus to “dip the tip of his finger in water and cool (his) tongue…” Abraham says that the rich man received his reward on earth, and that now there is a chasm that separates Heaven and hell. The rich man responds with these words:
Luke 16:27-28 – “He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my family, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’”
Observations: I am not a fire and brimstone kind of guy. That being said, we carry the responsibility to not only be a messenger of the incredible gift of life in Christ, but also the responsibly to warn of the eternal torment for those who reject Christ. In some ways, we have a message from hell… “Send _______ to my family… let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.”
Application: I must prayerfully look for opportunities to lovingly warn others of the eternal consequence of sin.
Have you ever heard someone give the warning that the rich man asks for in an effective way? Read the ending of the parable. How should that affect our application?