““There was a certain rich man who clothed himself in purple and fine linen, and who feasted luxuriously every day. At his gate lay a certain poor man named Lazarus who was covered with sores. Lazarus longed to eat the crumbs that fell from the rich man’s table. Instead, dogs would come and lick his sores. “The poor man died and was carried by angels to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. While being tormented in the place of the dead, he looked up and saw Abraham at a distance with Lazarus at his side. He shouted, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me. Send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I’m suffering in this flame.’ But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your lifetime you received good things, whereas Lazarus received terrible things. Now Lazarus is being comforted and you are in great pain. Moreover, a great crevasse has been fixed between us and you. Those who wish to cross over from here to you cannot. Neither can anyone cross from there to us.’ “The rich man said, ‘Then I beg you, Father, send Lazarus to my father’s house. I have five brothers. He needs to warn them so that they don’t come to this place of agony.’ Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets. They must listen to them.’ The rich man said, ‘No, Father Abraham! But if someone from the dead goes to them, they will change their hearts and lives.’ Abraham said, ‘If they don’t listen to Moses and the Prophets, then neither will they be persuaded if someone rises from the dead.’ ”” (Luke 16:19–31, CEB)
Seeing indigent people living on city streets, outlines their plight,
each day and night, low position contrasted by economic height.
Connecting to intensity of feeling from a destitute, parched, impoverished soul,
what does it take to find relief, to be rescued, to find a way to be made whole?
The rich man looked up from hell, toward hope of changing places,
as he hungrily sought to receive, accept loving graces.
Acting too late, he then sought to deliver a warning for his brothers,
once more, denied, his anguish remains to remind, reckon our own druthers…
lessons from prophets, teachers, on how to decide,
ultimately determining where we’ll abide.
Pastor Rich Wagner
Sunday, September 25, 2022 Sixteenth Sunday After Pentecost
Worship -- 9:30 AM
New Testament: 1 Timothy 6:6-19
Gospel Reading: Luke 16:19-31