The Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus August 19, 2014

There was once a very stingy man who collected and kept as much money as he possibly could. He shared his plan with his wife, “I’m going to place all this cash up in the attic, so when I die I’ll take it up with me to heaven.” The day came when he breathed his last, and after some weeks his wife remembered what her husband had said. Out of curiosity, she climbed up to the attic, where she found the pile of undisturbed money. She then said to herself, “Maybe he should have left it in the basement!”

This funny story reminds us of what the love of money does to us—it corrupts our hearts. For this very reason, Jesus shared a principle we should all hold to heart: “No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money” (Luke 16:13).

Almost immediately after sharing this principle, Jesus gave the parable of the rich man and Lazarus—the story of an extravagantly rich man and the dirt-poor man who laid outside the gate to his opulent estate, hoping to eat the scraps that fell from the rich man’s table. Shockingly, the roles of the two men were reversed in eternity, and so it’s a story Jesus used to challenge His audience’s lifestyle choices and compassionate giving.

You see, those listening to Jesus were the religious leaders of His day who loved money, and with the parable He exposed their true spiritual state: whether they loved God and people, or whether they loved the world and its riches. And the challenge given to them two thousand years ago is the same challenge given to us today: remember the poor at your door.

Someone once put it this way: “If you love money you will use people. If you love people you will use money.”

Dear Christian, remember the poor at your door. Not only because it’s our moral obligation, but because Jesus Himself remembered you, too. He left His heavenly mansion, He opened His gate, and He gave us the bread of life. He gave us Himself! And now, as an act of grateful worship, we can do likewise.

Be a restored beggar that points other beggars to where the bread is. Live out the Gospel in your community, all the while sharing the Gospel to a world starving for the Good News of Jesus Christ. Remember the poor at your door.

– Pastor Marttell Sánchez