Friday, April 17, 2015

Bishop Version of a Great Parable

One of my all time favorite parables is told by Jesus as recorded in Luke 16 ( I suggest reading vv 19-31 now).  In this story, with the funniest punch line in Scripture, Lazarus dies and is carried away to the bosom of Abraham.  In the original telling, Lazarus is extremely poor, and the other guy, now in hell is extremely rich.

In my version, Lazarus is an uneducated common-sense only kinda guy, and the rich guy in the original is replaced by a Ph.D.  Both Lazarus and the doctor die and the Ph.D., to his surprise, finds himself in hell.  During their earthly lives, Lazarus and worked and earned a  living, and never thought of himself as particularly astute. He had loved G^d and accepted salvation through the Messiah, Jesus. The Ph.D. was far too smart for any of that. He had joined the Skeptics Society, and the the Freedom from Religion Association. The Ph. D. wasn't afraid of hell, and had little fear of death.

Surprise, surprise, surprise.

The Ph.D. calls to G^d asking that poor stupid Lazarus dip his dirty finger into water and then touch his tongue to give him some relief.

Sorry, smart guy, there is a GREAT GULF separating heaven from hell- yes that hell that you did not fear.

Too bad.

The Ph.D. makes one last plea, "Send Lazarus back to warn my Ph.D. and M.D. colleagues!"

Abraham replies, "They have the testimony of Scripture and nature."

But the Ph.D. argues, "But if someone comes back from the dead, they will realize they aren't as smart as they think."

But, here it comes, "They have the Scriptures, if they don't believe those, they will not believe even if someone comes back from the dead!'


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