Luke 16:25-31
“But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’ “He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father’s house, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’ “Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’ “‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’ “He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”

Over and over again, Jesus keeps warning us about worldly riches and it’s effect on our lives. The issues are not about having or accumulating wealth but rather understanding the purpose of it. In the passage above, we see the end result of the lives of the rich man and the poor man, Lazarus. On earth, the rich man lived a life of luxury that the world envied and in death he lived a life of pain and disaster. On the flip side was the poor man Lazarus who lived a life of pain and longing for his basic needs but in death he lived in the presence of God by the side of Abraham. What is the Lord asking of us today? Are we expected to live lives of beggars or rich men and what is the outcome of our lives?

Several people mentioned in the Bible grew in wealth, became prosperous and were spoken highly about including King David, Abraham, Job, among many others. Therefore Jesus is not condoning prosperity. At the same time Jesus tells the rich young ruler that to attain salvation, over and above living a life of perfect adherence to the law, he needed to sell his riches and give it to the poor. So what then are we expected to do? The issue being highlighted by Jesus here was not the riches that the rich man had but obviously his lack of understanding as to why God blessed him with much. Jesus came to give his own life for our salvation and that is the greatest sacrifice known to man. He does not expect us to sacrifice our lives but to share what he has blessed us with so that we can help share his love in a real and physical way. Jesus said earlier in this chapter that those who can be trusted with little shall be given more and I hope this Christmastime, you are again encouraged to share your joy with those less fortunate without an expectation back and he will bless you with more in his time and ways that you can use for his glory more and more!

In His Loving Service,

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