They Hear Not

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

“And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead” (Luke 16:31 KJV).

Neither will they be persuaded….

Having died in his trespasses and sins, the rich man is suffering torment in the flames of Hell. Although deceased, he has retained his memories, recalling details of his former life on Earth: “Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father [Abraham], that thou wouldest send him [Lazarus] 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 saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them” (verses 27-29). Abraham, valuing the Bible, corrected the rich man. If they wanted to avoid Hellfire, those brethren did not need to hear from a resurrected Lazarus: rather, they should pay attention to and believe the Hebrew Scriptures, the Divine revelation they already possessed.

Nonetheless, the rich man disagrees: “And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent” (verse 30). Abraham rejoins with today’s Scripture: “And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.” No matter how spectacular a miracle of God is, if the observer has failed to believe the Biblical truth underlying the work, the miracle will be dismissed as non-miraculous. Why would these five brethren believe Lazarus’ preaching—even if he did come back from the dead to speak to them? Lazarus would simply repeat what the Hebrew Bible taught: in other words, it would be the same revelation they (like their rich brother) had previously rejected. The problem lies in the heart, not the evidence.

If a celebrity were to trust Jesus Christ as his or her personal Saviour, colleagues would be just as eager to believe that testimony as they would be enthusiastic to trust the Scriptures undergirding that witness. Even if lost people could return from Hell and warn their family members on Earth, there would still be unbelief (the same rejection of the Scriptural truths that advise about that awful place of eternal judgment).

NOTE: Dear saints, I commemorate 16 years of writing ministry today!