In the story we hear from Jesus today, there is a great divide. A
chasm separates the rich man who “received his good things
during his lifetime” and poor Lazarus “who received evil
things” but is comforted while the rich man is in agony (16:25).
The chasm is there as we picture the two men after death – but
there is also a chasm between them in this life. The rich man
has everything he could wish for, while Lazarus has nothing.
The rich man has the opportunity to bridge this chasm, but he
leaves Lazarus in his undignified and dehumanised existence.
Jesus warns the rich man that those who “won’t listen to Moses
and the prophets won’t be persuaded even if someone rises
from the dead” (Luke 16:31).
We know Jesus as the one who crossed the divide from God to
humanity, heaven to earth, and from death to life. Jesus gave
up his good things to suffer the evil which we also experience
in life. Jesus sees us in a way the rich man never saw Lazarus.
So we also can cross the chasms in this word to bring dignity
and humanity to the children of God around us.