Luke 24 Part 2–The Walk to Emmaus

Jesus was back! He had suffered and died for our sins. But just as the prophets had predicted, He rose on the third day.  News was starting to spread of the crucifixion of the Lord. Two men were walking from Jerusalem to Emmaus. During the walk, Jesus joined them.  the Lord acted as though He had not heard the news.  The men explained the week’s events and the furor those events caused.  Then Jesus spent the journey telling the men the prophetic signs and how the father let people know what was to come.

Jesus then stayed and joined them for dinner and when the Lord had broken bread and gave it to them, He revealed Himself and promptly disappeared.  They were amazed, informed, and now ready to face whatever and tell the world that Jesus was alive.  The men ran to the eleven and told them what had happened, all that Jesus said, and His breaking bread.  The eleven were amazed. Once again as amazing as it was, it was only the beginning.

Jesus’ resurrection changed the course of History. But at its beginning, those whom God planned to use, needed to see He was real, and His resurrection was also real. In the days that followed, Jesus would appear to more than 500 folks. I Corinthians 15:6. Jesus then ascended and sent His Holy Spirit in His place.  His Spirit indwells us and reminds us that He is with us, moment by moment.  If we will walk by faith, as the men did that day, we will see Jesus revealed in our lives.  That will be the most amazing journey of all.

God Bless You


13 That very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles[a] from Jerusalem, 14 and they were talking with each other about all these things that had happened. 15 While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. 16 But their eyes were kept from recognizing him. 17 And he said to them, “What is this conversation that you are holding with each other as you walk?” And they stood still, looking sad. 18 Then one of them, named Cleopas, answered him, “Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?” 19 And he said to them, “What things?” And they said to him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, a man who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, 20 and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death and crucified him. 21 But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things happened. 22 Moreover, some women of our company amazed us. They were at the tomb early in the morning, 23 and when they did not find his body, they came back saying that they had even seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. 24 Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see.” 25 And he said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.

28 So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He acted as if he were going farther, 29 but they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.” So he went in to stay with them. 30 When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them. 31 And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And he vanished from their sight. 32 They said to each other, “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?” 33 And they rose that same hour and returned to Jerusalem. And they found the eleven and those who were with them gathered, 34 saying, “The Lord has risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!” 35 Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread.

Luke 22 Part 4–It is Friday, But Sunday is Coming

The scene of after the cross is a very sad part of Luke’s story.  It is that period where it seemed all was lost.  It is also the theme, however, of one of the most hopeful statements used by preachers and evangelists through the centuries.  “It is Friday, but Sunday is coming.”  In the lives of Jesus’ followers, seeing their Messiah dead on the cross undermined all the hope and beliefs they had built though the 3+ years of His ministry.  They were alone, afraid, and completely without hope.  The one on whom they had rested their hopes and belief was now dead.  The Jewish leaders were celebrating, Satan was gloating, and the Father now sat quiet.

We know the end of the story though! Jesus had previewed it several times for His guys.  He would arise on the third day! But those hours in between would be difficult and seem paralyzing.  In addition, even those that still had hope, faced the endless anticipation and fear of those next days.  What if He did not rise? What if this is all there is? It is a debilitating fear that leaves one empty and lost.  It is the same fear the Israelites had just before Moses came on the scene. It is the same fear they had as they marched around the walls of Jericho. It is the what the essence of faith entails.  Believing in what has not been seen–yet.

We still deal with that fear.  As we face these chaotic times, when all the principles and foundational beliefs we have are questioned, it is difficult to continue to believe and follow God. The great hope we have is the same hope that carried Israel out of Egypt, into the promised land, and back into a relationship with God our Father.  In that same spiritual sense, we can hear the old tent revivalist say, “It is Friday, but SUNDAY is COMING!”

God Bless You


50 Now there was a man named Joseph, a member of the Council, a good and upright man, 51 who had not consented to their decision and action. He came from the Judean town of Arimathea, and he himself was waiting for the kingdom of God. 52 Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body. 53 Then he took it down, wrapped it in linen cloth and placed it in a tomb cut in the rock, one in which no one had yet been laid. 54 It was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin.

55 The women who had come with Jesus from Galilee followed Joseph and saw the tomb and how his body was laid in it. 56 Then they went home and prepared spices and perfumes. But they rested on the Sabbath in obedience to the commandment.

Luke 23 Part 1–Jesus on Trial

As the time for our Savior’s death approached, it was apparent that the sacrifice was real.  Jesus stood before the Roman governor who had no reason to judge or punish Him.  Then He was sent to the Jewish king and that man simply wanted a magic show–Jesus would not humor him.  These leaders knew this was a man that had not committed any crime but was hated by the religious leaders–a true no-win situation for the two governing leaders.

Jesus also knew He had committed no crime.  He had simply met the needs of the folks with whom He came into contact.  He spoke the truth, in love about God’s love for people and the folks in Israel.  He called the religious leaders out for doing everything to honor themselves in the name of God. That was the point, God had tried sending priests and prophets to express His desire to redeem His people.  Those He sent were ridiculed and injured; even killed. Now, as in the parable of the landowner and tenants, God sent His Son to make peace and get on track with the tenants (Religious leaders).  They were now plotting His death so that they would not be accountable to the Landowner (God). Luke 20:19. Neither our Lord nor Father God was surprised.  The critical thing was that Jesus did know what had to happen and allowed these “Keystone Cops” to think they were completing a grand plan to rid themselves of a rival. 

Then and now, we are the beneficiaries of His willingness to give what no man could take without God’s help or consent.  As Paul reminded us in Romans 5:8, “God demonstrated His love for us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” In this season when Easter is fast approaching, we need to reflect on the personal relationship we have with God, and we need to allow Him to be a part of all aspects of our lives.  We cannot simply acknowledge God’s sacrifice; we must allow it to change us and help us to become more like Him.

God Bless You


Then the whole assembly rose and led him off to Pilate. And they began to accuse him, saying, “We have found this man subverting our nation. He opposes payment of taxes to Caesar and claims to be Messiah, a king.”

So Pilate asked Jesus, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

“You have said so,” Jesus replied.

Then Pilate announced to the chief priests and the crowd, “I find no basis for a charge against this man.”

But they insisted, “He stirs up the people all over Judea by his teaching. He started in Galilee and has come all the way here.”

On hearing this, Pilate asked if the man was a Galilean. When he learned that Jesus was under Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem at that time.

When Herod saw Jesus, he was greatly pleased, because for a long time he had been wanting to see him. From what he had heard about him, he hoped to see him perform a sign of some sort. He plied him with many questions, but Jesus gave him no answer. 10 The chief priests and the teachers of the law were standing there, vehemently accusing him. 11 Then Herod and his soldiers ridiculed and mocked him. Dressing him in an elegant robe, they sent him back to Pilate. 12 That day Herod and Pilate became friends—before this they had been enemies.

Luke 19 Part 3–The Triumphal Entry to Holy Week

Luke begins the look at Holy week with Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem. This was the most difficult journey that the Lord embarked upon in His ministry.  Jesus knew every step in the playbook.  He had seen it since before the creation.  It is a very telling hint for us when Jesus sends His guys to retrieve the colt.  The detail of where to go and what to say; reminds us that this video had replayed many times in the Lord’s thoughts.  

Then, as Jesus started into the city, the crowds welcomed Him as a conquering hero.  We must not miss the irony of the colt.  Conquering heroes paraded in on beautiful chargers with banners waving and trumpets blaring.  Conversely, when a king came in peace, would he do so on a colt, non-descript.  Still, the crowds roared and pronounced Jesus’ arrival.  While His men basked in their celebrity, Jesus felt the anguish of His coming fate, and the fate of His chosen ones. Still, He proceeded into Jerusalem, knowing that He would soon complete His mission. Jesus was prepared suffer the pain, humiliation, and separation from the Father.

It is that sacrifice that redeemed us.  Jesus, as the old hymn reminds us, could have called 10,000 angels to stop the trial and crucifixion.  He did not.  In exchange, the Lord simply asks us to trust and follow Him.  Jesus knew all about our lives and all our issues even as the Father proclaimed, “Let there be Light!” We cannot shock or surprise the Lord.  We can, however, follow Him and experience peace and an abundant Life here on earth; as well as, an eternity with Him in Glory.  What a great gift, and what an amazing promise.

God Bless You


After Jesus had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. As he approached Bethphage and Bethany at the hill called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, 30 “Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 31 If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ say, ‘The Lord needs it.’” Those who were sent ahead went and found it just as he had told them. As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?” They replied, “The Lord needs it.” They brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it. As he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road. When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen: “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples!” 40 “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.” As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it 42and said, “If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes. 43 The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. 44They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you.”

Luke 19 Part 1–Seeking and Saving that Which is Lost

The story of Zacchaeus has several great components.  First, we see the lost man’s desire to meet the Master.  Zacchaeus was one of the most hated and powerful men in his community.  As chief tax collector, Zacchaeus had the ear of the Romans and the wealth of the city.  Even with all that power and wealth, Zacchaeus was still empty.  He wanted to learn more about this Jesus that had changed so many lives. Sadly, he could not see Jesus over the crowd.  He had to climb a tree to catch a glimpse.  

Next, we see the perspective of the Lord.  As Jesus passed through, like the shepherd He saw the one sheep that was lost and called out to this man in the tree and told Zacchaeus he was the reason for Jesus being there that day.  It changed Zacchaeus’ Life.  In an instant, Zacchaeus became generous and sought to make amends to all he had wronged.  His heart was redeemed.  What a picture of the power of God. Jesus had truly sought and saved that which was lost.

Finally, there was the crowd.  They were incensed by Jesus’ choice of company that day.  In their minds, Zacchaeus was the least worthy person to be with Jesus. Still, after He met the Lord, Zacchaeus would become a benefactor and friend to those that despised him.  Sadly, the people that should embrace those that need Jesus, were the ones that cast Zacchaeus aside.

In our lives, we need to have Jesus’ heart and not the heart of the crowd.  Jesus saw Zacchaeus in the tree, and He knew Zacchaeus was the point of the journey.  The crowd only saw Zacchaeus sin.  We, as Jesus chosen, need also to seek and to save that which is lost.  We can never lose sight of our mission.  Many people search high and low for a way to be saved, but they cannot see over the crowd.  It is our job to reach out and bring them to Jesus. It is not our job to judge them.  

Finally, if You have tried to find peace through power, influence, money, or any other means, Like Zacchaeus, you will still be empty inside.  Jesus is uniquely suited to fill the void in your life.  Once you give your life to Him, you will be free from the void left in your heart by a world gone mad.  All Jesus asks is for you to accept His gift of salvation, and then trust the Lord to do a work in your heart–just like He did with Zacchaeus.

God Bless You

 Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy. He wanted to see who Jesus was, but because he was short, he could not see over the crowd. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way.

When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.

All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”

But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now, I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”

Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”

Luke 18 Part 2–Child Like Faith and Wealth

Dr. Luke continues to recount the principles that Jesus taught while He was wrapping up His ministry on earth.  It remained important to Luke for those that read his account to see as many sides of the Lord as was possible.  In this account, Luke looked at how Jesus felt about children and childlike faith.  Parents were bringing their children to meet Jesus, and have the Lord bless them.  What a nice change for Jesus–pouring out blessings to the young.  The disciples, however, saw it as a bother, taking Jesus from the important duties.  Jesus called the kids to him and told the disciples not to interfere.  Jesus saw the children and their faith as pure and undamaged by life.  He wanted all to understand that it was that pure and complete faith of children that pleased God most.  It was a picture of the relationship God longed to have with His chosen.

Next, Jesus was asked what it really took to receive eternal life.  The man that asked was very wealthy. Jesus said that he should follow the law and prophets.  The man smugly said he had done that all his life.  Then Jesus dropped the bombshell–“Sell your stuff, give the proceeds to the poor, and then come and follow Me.” The man became sad. Jesus then told the group that it is very difficult for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God. 

God told Israel at Mount Sinai that They must have no other God before Him.  Sadly, time has revealed repeatedly that money and wealth are some of the most difficult gods to release.  They give the illusion of independence and control.  They make one feel safe and unstoppable.  Jesus knew and showed us that those feelings were not real and were as temporal as a morning fog. 

Wealth is never satisfying, and unless its owner is willing to lay it at the Lord’s feet, it will take the Lordship of their lives.  Jesus was simply stating that to have eternal life, we must lay whatever controls us at his feet. Wealth, power, relationship, family, career, or anything that we consider our ticket to independence or control must be laid at God’s alter.  

Fear not, however, as He told the disciples, whatever we lay at God’s feet, He will restore exponentially back to us.  He is a loving Father that only wants us to enjoy peace and freedom.  That peace and freedom comes from trusting and following Him.  It has been the same since the beginning and will remain so until His return.

God Bless You


15 People were also bringing babies to Jesus for him to place his hands on them. When the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. 16 But Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 17 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

The Rich and the Kingdom of God

18 A certain ruler asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

19 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. 20 You know the commandments: ‘You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.’[a]

21 “All these I have kept since I was a boy,” he said.

22 When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

23 When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was very wealthy. 24 Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! 25 Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”

26 Those who heard this asked, “Who then can be saved?”

27 Jesus replied, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.”

28 Peter said to him, “We have left all we had to follow you!”

29 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus said to them, “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or sisters or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God 30 will fail to receive many times as much in this age, and in the age to come eternal life.”

Luke 18 Part 1–Tenacity and Humility

As Jesus continued to prepare His disciples for His departure, the Lord stepped back and addressed some basics.  In this discussion, Jesus focused on things that move God and on things that put barrier between us.  First Jesus discussed tenacity.  He told a parable of a heartless judge and a tenacious old woman. The woman hounded the judge day after day until the judge relented.  The judge that did not fear God or man, finally succumbed because the lady wore him out.  Jesus wanted His disciples to understand that they needed to be passionate and tenacious as they sought God.  He needed them to know that there were times when tenacity became more effective than might or craftiness.

Next Jesus addressed the issue of pride.  He told the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector.  The Pharisee stood before God proud and smug that he had checked all the boxes and was one of the good ones.  He was so happy he had it all together.  He thought it only polite to drop by ad high 5 God, since the two of them were so much alike.  Meanwhile,  across the room, a sinful tax collector kneeled, in need of a touch from God.  This man knew he was far from perfect.  Infact, the tax collector knew God was his only hope.  Jesus wanted His guys to understand that both of those men were hopeless without a touch from God, but only the humble one was ready spiritually to receive God’s touch.

In our lives, we face a broken world each day.  We do our best to meet the daily challenges, and we seek the Lord’s mercy and provision.  As we do, we can never quit.  We must be as tenacious as the widow and as humble as the tax collector.  None of us has arrived, in fact, we are not even close.  We need to seek God with all our hearts, daily, in fact, continuously, as we recognize our own inability to manage this life without God and His grace.  We are not perfect, nor, have we somehow spiritually arrived.  David, Moses, Elijah, all men God adored were frail and defeated on their own.  Their greatness came as they humbly sought the Lord.

We can do the same–recognize our imperfection, seek God, and follow Him closely. Finally, we must never stop praying for the Lord’s blessing and direction!

God Bless You


Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’

“For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”

And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”

The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector

To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’

14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

Luke 17 Part 2–Lepers and Grateful Hearts

Being grateful is an important part of following the Lord.  In this passage, Jesus does another amazing healing.10 lepers call out for Jesus to have mercy.  He does and heals the 10 men. Once they are declared clean, they go back to their lives and do not give the master a second thought. Well except one Samaritan that rushes back to thank Jesus.  Jesus is saddened that only one returned and that man was a foreigner.

Make no mistake, Jesus was not in need of the pat on the back. Jesus’ sadness comes because these men were a stark reminder for Jesus of how God’s chosen think so very little of their Lord.  They perform their rituals and their traditions, but as God blesses them, they are so spoiled that they don’t even consider the smallest gesture of thankfulness.  For Jesus, God’s Son, and our sacrifice, it was a foreshadow of what lay ahead for Him.

In today’s culture, the church has mirrored the picture of the 10 lepers.  We have enjoyed generations of protection and provision.  We have been able to worship feely, and to send ministers around the world to share the Gospel. It has been so easy, that we have marched on our merry ways expecting it to never end; failing to even say thank you for the blessing. Now, as persecution looms near, God’s people need to come back with grateful hearts and be thankful for the gift of worship. If we will, perhaps the Lord will tell us, as he did the Samaritan leper, that our faith has healed our land.

Whatever the outcome, we need to live lives full of grateful hearts and minds.  We can never take for granted that the gift of freedom can evaporate in a very short period. Help me, Lord, to remain grateful and never take You for granted.

God Bless You


Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. 12 As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy[b] met him. They stood at a distance 13 and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!”

14 When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed.

15 One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. 16 He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan.

17 Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? 18 Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?” 19 Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”

Luke 17 Part 1–Forgiveness, Faith and Duty

As Jesus ministry was rounding the last turn, He began to focus on the relationship, first with others, then with faith, and finally duty.  As it relates to others, Jesus told His men to take responsibility for their actions and then forgive others that do the same.  It can be difficult to admit when you are wrong, but if you will and turn from your wicked ways, forgiveness is yours.  That applies even if people fall multiple times. 

 Next, Jesus reminded the disciples that they had plenty of faith, but that that faith had to be placed in the eternal and not in their own abilities.  Jesus reminded the group that if they had mustard seed size faith, that faith was sufficient to move mulberry trees.  We all want more faith, but Jesus reminded the disciples that it was the object of that faith that was the important thing.

Finally, Jesus reminded the disciples that doing their duty was not something to be overly proud of.  Instead, it is what is expected. As his servants, we are called to deny ourselves, take up our crosses daily and follow Him.  In that, they do not get “brownie points” instead, they should look for ways to do more.  This is the training and discipline, and that is never fun.  If His people will do their duties and seek to do even more–then the blessing will follow. 

For us, this passage reminds us to take responsibility for our lives, forgive others that do likewise.  We are to have faith, even a little–but that faith needs to be in the Lord and allow Him to direct our paths. 

Finally, we need to do what we have been called to do.  We cannot back away from the faith.  But following the Lord is not a super special extra.  It is simply our lives.  We must do our duty without complaint and seek no extra pats on the back for simply doing the things for which we have been called.  This is war and we are warriors.  Live accordingly.

God Bless You


Jesus said to his disciples: “Things that cause people to stumble are bound to come, but woe to anyone through whom they come. It would be better for them to be thrown into the sea with a millstone tied around their neck than to cause one of these little ones to stumble. So watch yourselves.

“If your brother or sister[a] sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them. Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive them.”

The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!”

He replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.

“Suppose one of you has a servant plowing or looking after the sheep. Will he say to the servant when he comes in from the field, ‘Come along now and sit down to eat’? Won’t he rather say, ‘Prepare my supper, get yourself ready and wait on me while I eat and drink; after that you may eat and drink’? Will he thank the servant because he did what he was told to do? 10 So you also, when you have done everything you were told to do, should say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty.’”

Luke 16 Part 2–The Short or Long Game

After talking about choosing between God and money, Jesus tells a cautionary parable.  The parable illustrates the result of choosing the wrong master.  The rich man had a great life and Lazarus was a beggar.  In their lives, the rich man had no incentive or desire to assist Lazarus and literally watched the beggar die at his doorstep.  Then, the rich man also dies and ends up in Hades; where it is all torment, all the time.  In contrast, Lazarus is resting in Heaven with Father Abraham. 

Now, the Rich man is reaching out and begging for relief.  Abraham sadly, but firmly says no.  He tells the rich man that he made a choice on earth and is bearing the consequence of that choice.  What is more, there is no crossing over–that has been made impossible.  

Then, a more chilling answer.  The rich man asks Abraham to send Lazarus to warn his family of the cost of the rich man’s choice so that they might avoid the torment he was experiencing.  Sadly, Abraham tells the once rich man, that they have been warned by Moses and the prophets.  If they would not listen to that, they would not even listen to one raised from the dead.

In our lives, we are faced daily with the choice of serving God or serving ourselves and the world.  The choice takes on various forms and states, but in the end, it is still the choice of serving God or serving the world.  Both choices yield results. Often serving oneself is easier and more comforting in the short term.  From an eternal perspective, however, rejecting God’s plan for our lives leaves us separated and lost. 

Conversely, if we will trust God, in all circumstance, realize that He is faithful to supply all our needs, follow Him in all our ways–then the Lord will lead us through this brief journey and take us home to be with Him for eternity. 

It is our daily choice to play the short or the long game.  There is no doubt which choice is easier.  There is also no doubt which choice is better.  It takes us back to Joshua at his final address to Israel as they entered and took the promised land, “Choose this day whom you will serve…As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord!” Joshua 24:15.

God Bless You


“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. 20 At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores 21 and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores.

22 “The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 In Hades, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. 24 So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’

25 “But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. 26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been set in place, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’

27 “He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my family, 28 for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’

29 “Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’

30 “‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’

31 “He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”