Summary: his message is for two groups of people: those who are candidates for heaven and those who are candidates for hell. You can divide the whole Christians into those two groups any day anytime.
Luke 16:19-31 says, “There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day. And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores. And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table: moreover, the dogs came and licked his sores. And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom the rich man also died and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame. But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence. Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father’s house: For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment. Abraham said unto him, they have Moses and the prophets, let them hear them. And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent. And he said unto him, if they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.”
This was not a parable but a real life story told by Jesus. Both men actually existed, for the Bible says there was a certain rich man. There was actually a rich man and there was indeed a Lazarus. Beloved, know today that there is great danger in your not being sure of your salvation. And if you cannot make up your mind which way you are going, you are not sure whether it is heaven or hell, then you are on your way to hell because those on their way to heaven know it. And it is very good to understand these things now.
This message is for two groups of people: those who are candidates for heaven and those who are candidates for hell. You can divide the whole Christians into those two groups any day anytime. In the above story, the rich man died and when he opened his eyes, he found himself in hell fire. Lazarus also died and found himself in the bosom of Abraham. Then the man shouted to father Abraham, “I am tormented in this place, let Lazarus put his hand in water and cool my tongue.” Abraham said, “No, it is not possible. There is a great gulf between you and us. You cannot come here. Apart from that, while you enjoyed yourself in the world, Lazarus suffered. So, while you are now suffering, he is enjoying.” What Abraham was telling him was that there was no remedy at all. My prayer is that you would not push yourself to a stage where the issues of your life will have no remedy. Saul got to that stage and God said, “I regret making Saul a king. He has disappointed me.” Samuel cried to the Lord all night: “Father, please.” God said, “Talk no more to me about this matter. I have made up my mind.” And that was it. He had got to the point of no return.
You may ask, “Why did the rich man go to hell fire?” Luke 16:19 says, “There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day.” Was it because he was rich? No, Abraham was also a rich man. He was rich in cattle and all kinds of things. So, a rich man can make heaven if the money does not become his idol, if he does not place that money above God, and if he learns the principle of giving out, not the principle of hoarding the money. Did the rich man go to hell because he was clothed in purple and fine linen? No. Being well-dressed is not a sin. Was it because he ate good food? No. Food is useful to the physical body. Was it because he did not look after the beggar at his door? No. No one can look after all the beggars in the world. The reason was that at a stage in his life, he had said no to Jesus repeatedly. People like him would always argue and would have no time for God.