Today I’m sharing Becky Brown’s writings on this chapter.
She does a great job here.
Day 16 of 24
On His way to Jerusalem, Jesus reached out at every opportunity to crack the safe and open the door to set the Pharisees free from themselves. Defiantly, many of them chose to remain locked away from the freedom Jesus offered to them. They were bound by their traditions, their religiosity, their pride, their greed, their self-focus, their determination to walk away unchanged.
Jesus showed them victory over death, the value of reaching out to the least of these, the power of a healing touch. He pressed into their hearts the picture of a lost sheep being found and a self-lost son coming to his senses and returning to His father. Still, they remained unmoved.
Follow the money. Oh, how much truth is revealed in that statement! In the first part of Luke 16, Jesus uses a good example from a bad man to hopefully get their attention. They missed the point. Jesus had already exposed their hypocrisy in Luke 12:34 with “Where your treasure is, there you shall find your heart also.” Even with such direct exposure of their intentions, they were unaffected.
In verse 14, Dr. Luke provides a major clue as to their prime motivation for living: amassing money and getting ahead at any cost. In verse 15, Jesus exposes them completely with this red letter truth, “God knows your hearts.” They were busted openly, but they continued to be otherwise uninterested.
From one story about a smooth, shrewd, crooked money manager, Jesus moves to speak of another rich man. I do not believe this second story to be a parable. The sin of the rich man in this account is glaringly obvious. There was a great need literally lying at his door and he did absolutely nothing to help. Uncaring.
Thank goodness the name “Lazarus” meant “God is my help.” The rich man was so absorbed in himself and his own wonderful life, he couldn’t even see underneath his own dinner table. Lazarus was poor, crippled, sick, hungry and near death. The rich man did not even notice. To be so obviously oblivious is unimaginable.
Death is the great equalizer. None are exempt from its reach. In this case, the rich man become the beggar (see verse 21 and verse 27) while Lazarus is comforted. When the love of wealth consumes all of life, it denies us of a relationship with God through Christ. Eternally, it is costly to be unconcerned.
Unchanged. Unmoved. Unaffected. Uninterested.Uncaring. Unimaginable. For the most part, the Pharisees continued to be unconcerned…but not all of them were unreachable.