What of the rich man? After his life of self-indulgence, where do we find him? What does the Word say of him? In life, he enjoyed the best there was, but where do we find him in death?
In Hell! “...In hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.”
He is in utter torment here! He is in hades, in the state of separate souls, and there he is undergoing more misery and anguish than is humanly possible to imagine. And this is just the beginning…
We read in Revelation 20:14 that Hades – this place of torment where the rich man find himself – will ultimately be cast into the Lake of Fire! His torment, as with all condemned to that dark place, will ultimately be far, far worse.
Listen to this very closely: As the just and faithful immediately experience peace and comfort when they depart this life – like Lazarus – so too do the wicked immediately receive their own reward. They are snatched from the pursuit of the flesh by death, and deliver into endless misery and torment!
This rich man had dedicated himself to the pleasures of the world, filling his attentions with sumptuous living and fine foods and all sorts of pleasures, but apparently took no time to dedicate himself to his eternal life.So busy was he in living the good life, he never truly turned to God! He never sought forgiveness. He never looked to Heaven, or set his eyes on the Lord and his Kingdom.
He never cared even to look past his own wealth to reach out to poor Lazarus who even lay at his own gate! His heart was hard, he didn’t know mercy because he never needed it himself. Not until now! Now he begged for a little mercy.
As he looks up from the darkness, he sees ol Lazarus in the midst of paradise. The rich man, seeing the difference between his situation and that of Lazarus cries out to this figure he sees as Abraham, saying “have mercy on me,”
“…have mercy on me and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.”
It took death for this rich man to finally notice Lazarus!
“Hell & the Rich Man” continues next time…
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