Jesus changed the world in four days. Thursday was the last supper, prayer and trial. Friday he was crucified. Saturday his tomb was guarded and then Sunday he resurrected. What Jesus did on Saturday has been researched for hundreds of years with few answers. Let’s use a parable from Luke 16 to imagine where he went and what he did. But first, let’s set it up in the context of Jesus’ ministry as recorded by his disciple Luke. It’s very important to grasp the big picture of what’s happening. Jesus is on the road to Jerusalem, looking toward his final days and death. He’s teaching his disciples about the cost of following him.
Jesus, the great storyteller himself, is teaching in parables, which are earthly stories with heavenly messages. This series of parables in Luke 15 begins with the familiar prodigal son. It is followed by two more parables of people and their money: the shrewd manager, and the rich man and the beggar. Of all the parables, the beggar is the only one where Jesus gives a name to a person. The name Lazarus, is Hebrew for “the one who God helps”. These three parables point to a major theme: eternal destiny, being on the inside or the outside of God’s love. It’s about Lordship.
Now, with some background to this parable, take time to pray for guidance and read Luke 16:19-31. Let the words of the Master communicator himself fill your imagination. Use different translations if you’d like. Consider yourself as each one of the characters in this story. Develop the relationship the characters have with Jesus. Picture what you are thinking and feeling as you read what Jesus says to each. What do you imagine about the places they’re in? What might you be feeling about a place you cannot change or cannot leave? Can they change?
The ultimate decision of your life is who or what takes first place in it. In the middle of these three parables, Jesus says, “no servant can have two masters” (Luke 16:13). We make many decisions daily and they all add up to who is Lord of our lives and where we will spend eternity. Jesus came to change the world and he came to restore you. He came, as Lord and King, to give you his love, help, and victory in life over death. Write down some thoughts, a prayer or a praise, Jesus gives you about his Lordship in your life.
By Donna Burns