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Mass prep – 3 points/30 seconds: How can being rich help you be saved?


Amata J.N. | Amata J.N.

Fr. Paweł Rytel-Andrianik - published on 09/25/22

The Greek original of the parable of Lazarus and the rich man offers some interesting insights

Today’s Gospel is Luke 16:19-31

1. By way of introduction

We sometimes wonder why the rich man was eternally condemned and poor Lazarus was saved. Naturally, the issue is not money. The real reason is different. The reading of these verses of the Gospel based on the Greek original is very instructive here.  

2. Key words

Lying at his door was a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores

The original says that the beggar was “cast away, dropped” (Greek ballo). Interestingly, the very same word is used for depositing money with bankers. Some commentators make an interesting observation here. The rich man was like a banker. God has deposited a treasure at the entrance to his palace (ballo). Lazarus was the treasure. He was the ticket to the eternal happiness of the rich man, who however did not take advantage of it (Fr. P. Śliwiński, Fr. M. Kowalski). 

It was not being rich or comfortable in life that was the reason for the condemnation of the man living in the palace, but the fact that he did not take care of the man in need, whom God had placed in his path, literally “deposited with him.” And as we can see from this parable, our actions bear consequences for our lives even into eternity. 

If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded if someone should rise from the dead.

Abraham’s words are a rebuke. If one disregards the Scriptures, the Gospel, one will also disregard other signs, even supernatural ones. 

3. Today

Do I care for those in need whom God has “deposited” on my life’s path? How do I use what I have for the good of others? When was the last time I offered actual help? 

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