What Jesus Did! 'Gut-wrenchingly Graphic' — Luke 16:19-21

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Jesus said, "There was a rich man that always dressed in the finest clothes. He was so rich that he was able to enjoy all the best things every day. There was also a very poor man named Lazarus. Lazarus' body was covered with sores. Lazarus was often put at the rich man's gate. Lazarus wanted only to eat the small pieces of food left from the rich man's table. And the dogs came and licked his sores!"
— Luke 16:19-21 NLT
Illustration of Luke 16:19-21 NLT — "There was a rich man that always dressed in the finest clothes."

Key Thought

This image makes us want to throw up. However, what makes us sick is probably the thought of having dogs licking Lazarus' open sores. Yes, like other images in Scripture, this is revolting. Even more sickening to God—and it should be to us—is a man who has so much but who is doing so little to help someone so close. Lazarus wasn't even looking for much. However, rather than anointing the sores with oil and bandaging Lazarus' wounds, the rich man spurned him and only the dogs would offer him comfort and companionship. Who is your Lazarus? And yes, who is my Lazarus?

Today's Prayer

Father, open my eyes to see the people you have placed in my path for me to show compassion. Stir my heart with your Spirit to respond when I see them. Strip away the calloused and dead skin that surrounds my heart of compassion. Teach me the best way to show your love and grace. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Luke 10:33-34
  • Psalm 68:4-5
  • Matthew 25:34-40


About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.