Actual Event or Parable?

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by JIMNSC, Jan 24, 2003.

  1. JIMNSC

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    Luke 16:19-31 is about Lazarus and the rich man. In your opinion, was this story fact or parabolic?
     
  2. Helen

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    It is the only parable in which Jesus used a proper name and did not substitute something known and natural, such as a grape vine, or a tree, or a field and seed, to explain a spiritual picture.

    Therefore, I think He very well might have been referring to something real.

    If it was a parable, then what was it a picture OF? It seems to represent only itself and no other explanation is given, as He often did with the known parables.

    [ January 24, 2003, 11:08 AM: Message edited by: Helen ]
     
  3. Caretaker

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    19: There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
    20: And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
    21: And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
    22: And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
    23: And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
    24: And he cried and said, Father Abraham, 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.
    25: But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
    26: And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
    27: Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:
    28: For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
    29: Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.
    30: And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
    31: And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

    Though a parable is there not a great many truths contained?

    1) Torments of hell.
    2)Abrahams bosom
    3)Lazarus begging scraps the status of the gentiles,(compare with the Samaritan woman at the well and dogs eating scraps from the table)
    4)the rich man and his brothers the nation of Israel
    5)Israel has Moses and the Prophets, and yet if one came to them arising from the dead they would still not receive,(the rejection of Christ by the Jews, and the gentile Church arising)

    A servant of Christ,
    Drew
     
  4. Helen

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    Drew, why do you consider this a parable rather than an event Jesus was talking about?
     
  5. Me2

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    I would like to know where this story originated.

    was it in their mishna before Jesus? (from the OT)
    or was it extranious folklore....somethin referring to a real story or even perhaps fiction ?

    Jesus spoke in relationship to the spiritual conditions of man..

    so can anything be concluded that this is a story relating to the spiritual condition or "unseen state" of man.?
    and one more point ...isnt the spiritual world formless and invisible..not an actual physical environment?

    and my opinion is this is a parable representing two groups of peoples. jews living under the law and gentiles living under grace..both died spiritually.
    one under persecution because their ways would oppose God and the other would be agreeing and at rest with God. Jesus was speaking to them warning of what was to soon happen in their lives...

    [ January 24, 2003, 12:03 PM: Message edited by: Me2 ]
     
  6. Caretaker

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    Helen

    Member # 1595

    posted January 24, 2003 11:33 AM
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    Drew, why do you consider this a parable rather than an event Jesus was talking about?

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    1) Scofield considers this passage to be truth because there are in fact rich men and beggers, and the use of proper names which is not normal in parables, ie. Lazarus, and Abraham.

    2) Jesus is still speaking to not only the disciples but also Scribes and Pharasees
    as is told in Luke 15:
    1: Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him.
    2: And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.
    3: And he spake this parable unto them, saying,

    Although there is the name of Lazarus, and Abraham used in the account, there is no proper name givem for the rich man, and he was used as a symbol for Israel, in his purple and fine linen, and the brothers having Moses and the Prophets.
    This is a continuation without pause from the teachings of truth to counteract the accusations of the Pharisees and the scribes.

    Luke 16:
    14: And the Pharisees also, who were covetous, heard all these things: and they derided him.
    15: And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God.
    16: The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.
    17: And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail.
    18: Whosoever putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and whosoever marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery.

    From my perspective the passages are addressing the hearts and accusations of the scribes and Pharasees, imparting spiritual truth to those who would receive, and are made up of several different parables, with Chpter 15 and 16 being one event. The rich man is never named, thus not fully abhering to the parameter established in Schofield's interpretation.

    This is why I lean more towards the passage as a parable, while fully embracing the absolute truth and teaching of the scripture, including the atmosphere and attributes of hell.

    A servant of Christ,
    Drew
     
  7. PraiseHim

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    I do think it is true.

    My question is when there is a parrable in the bible doesn't God always explain what it ment afterwards?
    -Heather
     
  8. Helen

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    Drew, thank you. I had no doubts at all about your adherence to Scripture! Please don't worry about that. I just wanted to know how you arrived at your conclusion about this most puzzling of all Jesus' stories. What you said makes sense and I'm willing to wait for heaven to find out for sure about it!

    Heather, yes, there are some parables which are not really explained, such as the parable of the talents. So this particular one about Lazarus and the rich man remains a bit of a puzzle to many, and I am certainly not set in concrete about it!
     
  9. Daniel David

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    Why do we think there will be communication between the elect and nonelect in the eternal realm?
     
  10. JIMNSC

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    I don't, Kal-EL that's one reason I feel it's parabolic.

    I love it because a certain passage in the Bible means different things to different people – I really do. I have opinions on scripture and here I get the benefit of the opinions of others and often times I miss little nuggets that others find (you must dig a little deeper to find the nuggets). ;)

    First, I think it is a parable which contains a proper name. Having one within it does not disqualify that possibility. The rich man is nameless. The preceding verses in the same chapter help explain this passage. Jesus’ message in this parable was to the Pharisees and he was telling them they needed to be as faithful to their master as the steward was to his. He was also relating to them that a little unfaithfulness was bad as was gross unfaithfulness and he was also giving them a preview of their destiny provided they didn’t change.

    Every parable has a message in it to even us (succeeding generations). This one is that we cannot serve two masters and if you don’t get it right before you die, it’s too late. I just wonder if the Pharisees grasped Jesus’ message as he used to explain many of his parables to his disciples privately after he taught them.

    Being an opinionated person, I’d like to say this about Scofield’s reference Bible – no offense intended to those heavy users of it. His notes, although useful many times, are not divinely inspired. Study Bibles are great helps – but – they are just the authors’ opinions.
     
  11. Johnv

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    This is a toughie. I side towards it being a parable, not an actual event. It's worded more like a parable than an actual event. Plus, it's told in the style of his getting a point across, as he does with all the known parables.
     
  12. Daniel Dunivan

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    Maybe the name Lazarus is not necessarily supposed to designate a particular person. What does the name Lazarus mean? This will give a clue into his purpose in the parable. (I don't have my lexicon here with me to provide an exact definition). As for Abraham, he is used as a type, though referring to the real person, for other issues in the NT--I'm thinking of Paul on justification.

    As for the gentiles vs. the Jews interpretation, this is interesting, but remember this parable is in Luke's gospel--one preoccupied with the damnation of the rich. Maybe Jesus is revealing that his ministry is about the outcast--the interpretation of gentile would be in this regard.
     
  13. DHK

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    I cannot remember the source where I read it, but I do remember reading that tradition tells us that the name of the rich man was "Dives."
    DHK
     
  14. BrianT

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    There is a problem with the whole premise on this thread. Don't confuse "parable" with "fable". A fable is a fictional story used to make a point. A parable does the same thing, but does not carry the "fictional" connotation.

    Luke 16:19-31 is *both* a parable and true. Why would Christ use a falsehood to make a point?
     
  15. Ben W

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    Absolutley BrianT.

    Every Parable spoken by Jesus was based on events that could happen.

    If Jesus gave a parable that could not happen it would be a false testimony.

    Remember Jesus was without sin.
     
  16. Me2

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    It would kinda seems odd to create foundational doctrine based on a literal interpretation of a parable or "what if" story "made-up-on-the-spot", if theres no basis of reality...

    would'nt it ?

    Where did this story originate ?

    Is its proof based on reality ? What ?

    or is its proof based on overzealous imagination ?
     
  17. Daniel Dunivan

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    Show me a mustard "tree" as large as is described in Matthew 13. Parables use imagery that is in no way tied to "false testimony." No more than when I say "it's so hot I could fry an egg on my forehead."
     
  18. Ben W

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    The Parable of the Mustard seed has no focus on the actual height of the tree. It has a tiny seed, and in comparison to the seed becomes a massive strong tree. Quite Factual.
     
  19. Daniel Dunivan

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    BenW

    Not factual. The mustard plant is a small bush not a tree at all. The major question is why would the use of exagerated imagery be lying? Or can we not use expressions in our speech? This is just silly.
     
  20. Ransom

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    Ben W said:

    If Jesus gave a parable that could not happen it would be a false testimony.

    Not so. "Fiction" does not mean "false"; there is no intent to deceive the reader or hearer.
     

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