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174 Christ delivers the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus. Sect. 125. wore Robes of Purple, and Vests of fine Linnen, Linen, and fared fumptuw
and daily feasted in a very fplendid and luxurious oully every Day. Luke XVI. Manner. And there was in the same Place 20 And there was a cera certain poor Man, named Lazarus (a), a Person tain Beggar, named Lazarus,
which was laid at his Gate indeed of eminent Piety, but in the utmost Indi.
full of Sores,
being full of Sores and Ulcers, he was a most
with the Crumbs which fell fed. if it were but with the Crumbs, which fell moreover, the Dogs came
from the Rich Man's Table: from the Rich Man's Table ; yea, he was in so and licked his Sores. exposed and abandoned a Condition, that the very Dogs came and licked bis Sores (b), which lay un
covered in the open Air. 22 But so it was, that in a little Time, the poor 22 And it came to pass
that the Beggar died, and .. Beggar, worn out with the Load of 1 Calamity, died ; and being a Favourite of Hea- into Abraham's Bosom: the
was carried by the Angels ven, notwithstanding all his Distress on Earth, he
Rich was carried by Angels into Abraham's Bofom, the Abode of happy Spirits in a separate State (c):
(a) A certain poor Man, named Lazarus.] An exceeding proper Name, which seems (as Lud. Cappellus observes,') to 'be derived from my sb, Lo azer, and signifies a helpless Perfon ; an Etymology on all Accounts much more natural, than that so generally followed, which derives it from Eliezer, GOD is my Helper: Some have imagined, from the Name of Lazarus, and the particular Detail of Circumstances, that this was an History, rather than a Parable ; but this must be a groundless Supposition, as it is plain the Incidents are Parabolical. But the Criticism of Lameirus, who explains it as a mystical Representation of the Jewish and Gentile Church, is far more extravagant. Dr. Lightfoot, and others, have Thewn, that the Yews in their Gemara have a Parable much to the fame Purpose.
(b) Yea, the Dog's came and licked his Sores.] Had the Connection in the Original been attended to, I think there could have been no Debate among Commentators, whether this were mentioned as an Alleviation, or an Addition to his Calamity. For however lenient and healing the Tongue of a Dog may be in such cases, the Words ande Xay Thould be rendered yea ; as Erasmus, Beza, Schmidius, and Calvin contend, and above all, Raphelius abundantly proves. (Annot. ex Xen. pag. 106, 107.) The Circumstance is surely recorded, to shew that his Ulcers lay bare, and were not (as Isaiah in another Case expresles it, chap. i. 6.) either closed, or bound up, or mollified with Ointment. Some Versions add, that no Man gave unto him; which Grotius thinks is intimated, in his wishing to be fed with the Crumbs which the Dogs used to gather. (Mat. xv, 27.) If so, it was with singular Propriety, that he who denied a Crumb, is represented as unable to obtain a Drop ; but as it is not expressed in the Greek, either here, or in Abraham's Reply, I did not chuse to iniert it. - Giving Alms will be no Security to those that live a sensual Life,
(c) Carried by Angels into Abraham's Bofom.] The Jews assign this Office to Angels, (see Drufius in loc.) and, no doubt, with the utmost Propriety, considering how suitable it is to their benevolent Natures, and to the Circumstances of a departed Spirit. The Greeks (as Elfner, Obferv. Vol. i. pag. 255, and many others, have observed,) aflign Guides to the Souls
and the mentioned as an there could have "be Sores.] Had thea be much to
The Rich Man begs invain for a Dropof Water to cool his Tongue.. 175 Rich Man also died, and The Rich Man also died quickly after him ; for all Sect. 125. was buried.
his Riches were not sufficient to procure the least w
Continuance of his Life ; and he was buried, with 23 And in Hell he lift up great Funeral Solemnity and Pomp. But ob- Luke XVI. his Eyes, being in Torments, ferve the Difference of their
serve the Difference of their Circumstances be-
yond the Grave. This poor sensual Creature was
Father of the Faithful himself.
presume not to ask so great a Favour, but only to
(d) In the unseen World.] This seems generally the Sense of the Greek Word, adns, as was observed before, Vol. i. pag. 546. Note (f). Both the Rich Man, and Lazarus, were in Hades, tho' in different Regions of it. See Grotius's learned and judicious Note here:
(e) Dip the Tip of his Finger in Water, &c.] The Hebrews drank their Wine mingled with Water ; and large Quantities of Water, on one Occasion or other, were used at their Feafts : (See John ii. 6.) There seems therefore in this Petition, a proper Allufion to that.
Archbishop Tillotfon observes, with his usual Vivacity, that this is the only Instance we meet with in Scripture, of any thing that looks like a Prayer put up to a glorified Saint.;. (Tillots. Works, Vol. ii. pag. 142.) and even here the Application was in vain, and no Relief was the Saint capable of giving. It is observable, the Rich Man speaks, as knowing
meer Archbifhem in ii. 6.) ameities of water &c.] The's learned and in
176 He begs that Lazarus might be sent to convert bis Brethren : Sect. 125. Moment ; for I am so tormented in this Flame, w that it excites an intolerable Thirst, which is con
tinually raging and preying on my very Soul. Luke XVI. But Abraham said, with awful and inflexible 25 But Abraham said, Severity, Son, remember the former Days, when
Son, remember that thou in
thy'Life-time received it the thou and Lazarus were upon Earth ; that thou good Things, and likewise didst then in thy Life-time receive thy good Things, Lazarus evil Things : but
now he is comforted, and which thou wast fo foolish as to chuse, in the mo
thou art tormented,
Anguish, can admit of any End or Interruption.
between us and you there is
a great Gulf fixed : so that sible to be granted ; for between us and you there they which would pass from is a great Chasm fixed; a vast unmeasurable Void hence to you, cannot ; neiis interposed ; lo that they who would go from hence ther, can they pass to us, that
would come from thence,
thee therefore, Father, that
thou wouldst please to fend him to my Father's House, 28 on an Errand of the utmost Importance;. For 28 For I have five Bre I have there five Brethren, thoughtless young Crea. thren ; that he may testify
unto tures like myself, who are now revelling on those Poffeffions which were once mine (t), and are likely e'er long to fall into the fame Misery with me : I earnestly intreat thee therefore, that he
Lazarus, and as supposing, (ver. 28.) that his Brethren might know him, if he appeared to them.
(f) I have five Brethren, &c.] As no Mention is made of any survjving Wife and Children, but his five Brethren are deicribed as living still together in his Father's House, one would iwigine that our Lord intended, to represent this wretched Creature as a young Man, who (unbappily for himself, like many modern Rakes,) coming early to the Possession of his Estate, soon broke his Constitution by Debauchery, and so left his Riches to the younger Children of the Family, having no other Heirs.
But that would bave no more Effeet than Revelation. 177 unto them, left they also may be sent, to testify to them the Reality and Sect. 125. come into this Place of Tor- Importance of this Invisible World, that they may m y
Luke XVI. be awakened to avoid those Evil Courses that have been my Ruin, and may not also come into this
Place of Torment.
hearken to the Warnings and Instructions that are
secure them from that Danger.
Behalf, and said, Nay, Father Abraham, they
repent, and reform their Lives.
with an Assurance of the Fruitlessness of any
lation are such, that if they hearken not to Mofes,
(8) If they hearken not to Mofes, &c.] It is true, Mofes no where expressly asserts a future State of Rewards and Punishments ; yet the Facts recorded by him strongly inforce the natural Arguments in Proof of it; and the Prophets speak plainly of it in many Places. See Pfal. xvi. 9, 10, 11. xvii. 15. xxiii. 6. xlix. 14, 15. lxxiii. 17, & seq. Prov. xiv. 32. Ecclef. iii. 17, 21. xi. 9. xii. 7, 13, 14. and Ezek. xviii. 19, 20, 21. Bishop Atterbury has excellently lhewn the Justice of Abraham's Assertion here, in his incomparable Discourse on this Text. (See his Sermons, Vol. ii. Serm. 2.) The Impenitence of many, who saw another Lazarus raised from the Dead, (John xi, 46.) and the Wickedness of the Soldiers, who were Eye-witnesses to the Resurrection of Christ, and yet that very Day suffered themselves to be hired to bear a false Testimony against it, (Mat. xxviii. 4, 15.) are most affecting and astonishing Illustrations of this Truth: For each of those Miracles was far more convincing, than such an Apparition, as is here referred to, would have been.
Reflections on the Case of the Rich Sinner and the Poor Saint.
I MP R O V E M E N T.
Sect. 125. M O ST evidently may we learn from this Parable, that it is impof
M V fible to know either Love or Hatred by any Thing that is before us Luke xvi.
under the Sun. (Ecclef. ix. 1.) Who that had seen the Pomp and Plenty 19,--21.
of this Rich Sinner, and compared it with the Indigence and Misery of Lazarus, would have imagined, that the latter had been the Child, and the former the Enemy of GOD? But let us judge nothing before the Time. (1 Cor. iv. 5.) Our Lord Jesus Christ shews us the Period of all the Prosperity of the Wicked, and of all the Calamities with which G
may be exercised, And what availed the Luxuries of Life, or the MagVer. 23, 24. nificence of Burial, to a Wretch tormented in Flames? Surely the Fierce
ness of those Flames would be proportionable to the Luxury in which he had formerly lived, and the Sense of his Torment be heightened by the Delicacy he had once indulged. May God awaken those unhappy Persons, whatever their Rank in the present Life may be, who place their Happiness and their Glory, in being clothed in Purple and fine Linnen, and faring sumptuously every Day! May they lift up their enchanted deluded. Eyes, and see that pointed Sword of the Divine Vengeance, which is fufpended over them by so weak a Thread; and, may they take this Warning from one greater than Moses and the Prophets, from one that came
from the Dead to inforce it, that they pass not into that Place of Torment ! Ver. 22. . Let poor affli&ted Saints take Comfort in what has now been read, tho'
they may be despised and lighted by Men. The Time will shortly come, when those Angels, that now descend in an invisible Form to minister to them, will appear as their Guard to convoy them to the Regions of Glory,
Abraham's Bosom will be opened to them, and the Dainties of Heaven be set before Multitudes, who, perhaps, while on this Side the Grave, hardly knew how to procure even the Necessaries of Life.
May we never view those Seats of Glory, as this wretched Sensualift did, at an unapproachable Distance ! Let us think seriously of his deplorable
Circumstances, when he asked a Drop of Water from the Tip of Lazarus's Ver. 25.
Finger, and yet was denied. Dreadful Representation ! yet made by Christ himself, who surely knew how to describe the Case with the utmost Propriety. Behold, oh our Souls; this Son of Abraham in that flaming Prison, in all the restless Agonies of Torment and Despair ; and we may judge what Dependance to place on a Descent from pious Ancestors, or a Participation of external Privileges.
We enquire not curiously into the Motives, which engaged him to Ver. 27, 28. request, that so extraordinary a Warning might be sent to his Brethren;
whether it might proceed from a Remainder of natural Affection, from