I posted this nearly a year ago, but I was in church this past Sunday and heard a wonderful sermon regarding this passage. I felt the need to reshare this post.
“And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, that you send him to my father’s house- for I have five brothers-in order that he may warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’ But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ But he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent!’ But he said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.'””(Luke 16:27-31 NASB)
This is a parable told by Jesus prior to His death. He was refuting the Pharisees who place more importance on strict adherence to rules and religiosity rather than faith in God and love toward others. The parable is about a rich man and a poor man and how their actions influence their eternal destination. One placed his faith in money and the other in God. I’ve read this passage many times, but this time I finally saw what Jesus was saying. The Pharisees were men who spent their lives studying the law written down by Moses and the writings of the prophets. Yet with all their knowledge of the scriptures,they could not recognize Jesus as the Messiah. Even when He’d died and risen from the dead, the Pharisees refused to believe.
“For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.” (Romans 1:21-23 NASB)
Today, people of the United States have access to the Bible (the law of Moses and the Prophets) in the palm of their hand (smartphones) or they can purchase one in any Barnes and Noble. Yet they ignore the truth and turn towards their own desires. The saddest part is that they won’t realize their mistake until it’s too late and they will have no excuse.
“Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, so that every mouth may be closed and all the world may become accountable to God; because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.” (Romans 3:19-20 NASB)
The scariest part of these passages still remains that last verse from Luke 16, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’ Have you ignored the Bible or mocked the words of your Christian friends? Ask yourself a question: Wherever you are reading this blog, if Jesus Christ were to suddenly appeared to you right now, would you believe in Him? What would it take for you to accept Jesus?