Sunday School

Mrs. Joyce Hicks

May 17, 2020

Luke 16: 19-31

  • 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 lifted 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 saith 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.

Once again, I’m just doing an outline of what we will be talking about.  Take the time to read the scripture and notes and then do some research before class.  Looking forward to what you find about some of the topics mentioned this week.  

Heaven or Hell? 

2 paths

Which would you rather hear a sermon on?

Do you think the average person really believes there is a hell?

Most people avoid talking about it.

Place of eternal, conscious torment 

Everlasting Fire, outer darkness, weeping and gnashing of teeth

Fire that never shall be quenched; worm dieth not

Hell, Fire and Brimstone message?

Hell – cruel? Unkind? Unfair?

Would God really send someone to hell?

Tragic truth is that most people who end up in hell will be shocked to find themselves there! 

A 2007 Gallup poll survey revealed that virtually all the people who believe in heaven also believe they will go there.

Which brings us to the lesson….There was a certain rich man

How rich was he?

Clothed in purple and fine linen

Challenge you to look up purple and fine linen and see how many times

they are in the KJV.   Read about the making of the tabernacle. 

Purple – Where did they get purple dye?

Acts 16

Mark 15:17 

Fared sumptuously every day

Fared:  perform in a specified way in a particular situation or over a               particular period of time 

Sumptuous: splendid and expensive-looking

Similar words:  lavish, luxurious, deluxe, opulent, magnificent, gorgeous, Splendid, grand, extravagant, lush, princely, rich, costly,

Expensive, impressive, imposing, plush, ritzy, swanky, 

Opposite:  humble, plain, cheap

 Fared sumptuously: “The word used for feasting is the word that is used for a gourmet feeding on exotic and costly dishes. He did this every day.” (Barclay)

Every day! Sounds pretty rich to me!

And there was a certain beggar (named Lazarus – unusual to find a person in a parable with an actual name)

What do we know about him

Was laying at the rich man’s gate

full of sores (which the dogs came and licked – yuck) and yes, I know the dog’s name was moreover

hungry – begging for food (would gladly have taken anything including the crumbs from the rich man’s table)

 Fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table: “Food was eaten with the hands and, in very wealthy houses, the hands were cleaned by wiping them on hunks of bread, which were then thrown away. This is what Lazarus was waiting for.” (Barclay)

Photo by cottonbro on

The following came from John MacArthur Commentary.  

The story of these two men is marked by extreme contrasts in life and shocking reversals after death.  In life, one was enormously wealthy, the other an impoverished beggar.  The rich man was inside the house, the poor man outside.  The poor man had no food, the rich man had all the food he could eat.  The poor man had needs, the rich man had none.  The poor man desired everything, the rich man desired nothing.  The poor man suffered, the rich man was satisfied.  The poor man was humiliated, the rich man was honored.  The poor man sought crumbs, the rich man feasted.  The poor man needed help, the rich man gave him none.  The poor man was a nobody, the rich man was well-known.  The poor man had no dignity in death, not even a burial, the rich man had dignity in death and a lavish funeral.  The poor man possessed no hope, the rich man possessed all hope.

After death, however, the situations of the two were completely reversed.  The rich man became poorer than the poor man had ever been, while the poor man became richer than the rich man could have ever imagined.  The poor man was on the inside (heaven), while the rich man was on the outside (hell).  The poor man enjoyed the great heavenly banquet, while the rich man was totally deprived.  The poor man needed nothing, the rich man lacked everything.  The poor man had all his desires fulfilled, while the rich man’s desires would go eternally unfulfilled.  The poor man was satisfied, while the rich man suffered.  The poor man was happy, while the rich man was tormented.  The poor man was honored, while the rich man was humiliated.  The poor man enjoyed a lavish feast, while the rich man longed for a drop of water.  The rich man desperately sought help, while the poor man was unable to provide it.  The poor man had a name, while the rich man did not.  The poor man had dignity, while the rich man had none.  All of the poor man’s hopes were realized beyond what he could have imagined, while the rich man’s hopes vanished forever.

The rich man is the main character in the story.  The poor man never speaks; his role is primarily to serve as the contrast to the rich man.  The rich man’s words give the only testimony from hell found anywhere in the Bible.

Wow.  That pretty much says it!  

Lazarus died and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom. (no burial, funeral, or earthly honor in death.  His body would have been thrown onto the dump with those of the rest of society’s outcasts….)  

Rich man died and was buried.  Notice he wasn’t carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom!) Sure he had an elaborate funeral though.

And in hell (bet he was one who was surprised to be in hell – sure he was thinking that he would be in heaven)

Father Abraham…

Have mercy on me!

Send Lazarus…..(he asked for Lazarus twice)

5 brothers

They have Moses and the Prophets – let them hear them

But if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent 

Neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead. (aren’t you glad that One did rise from the dead!

So, what do we take away from the lesson today? What does this mean to me?

Waiting, Worn, Worth

For someone with ADHD it’s not easy to just sit idly by and watch things happen. You may think that I sit here quietly and that I’m all at peace, when in reality my mind is three dimensions over and in a whole different universe. I told you before that I can be staring you in the face while you’re talking to me and I’m a week ahead of you. So you can just imagine the problem I have with waiting around. Waiting is just not my speed. Something I’ve come to realize though is that waiting is not slow, especially if you’re waiting on the God of the universe, especially when you’re waiting on Jesus to make a move in your life, when you’re waiting on prayer to be answered.

It seems for the longest time that’s all I’ve ever done my whole life is wait. When I was a kid I couldn’t wait to get into school, then I couldn’t wait to get to Middle School, then I had to wait for High School, then I had to wait till I could drive a car, then it was waiting on graduation, then of course it was waiting to get married, and then I know some of you are still waiting to have your babies. We finally finished potty training! In amongst all that I had to take a second look what happened in between the waiting. Was I just sitting around? Was I just staring at the walls watching other people do stuff? Or was I busy getting on with life?

grayscale photo of baby feet with father and mother hands in heart signs

Photo by Andreas Wohlfahrt on

For me there’s always something that has to be done, that’s just who I am. It’s not that I’m a goal-oriented person, I’ve never been that kind of person. I’ve never been able to set a goal and then reach it. Any time I’ve attempted to actually do that I always fail. In my mind there’s always something that just has to get done. There’s always work. If there was one thing I learned on the farm there’s always something that can get done.

So while I’m working and getting stuff done I get caught up in the everyday humdrum of things. I get mentally and physically drug down. There’s a new song out, well it’s actually a few years old now and I still feel like it’s new, but it talks about how “I’m worn, my prayers are wearing thin, even before the day begins.” I get out of shower in the morning and I’m already tired. I almost feel like I’m too exhausted to even brush my hair and it ain’t even past my shoulders. So I have to stop, and I have to remember just what I’m doing all this for. Just how blessed I truly am! Y’all think I’m playing, I literally count my blessings, bringing myself back to reality so I can see the big picture!

Jesse Clay and I love Shrek for those of you who don’t know us! We really like the musical, it’s hilarious for those who haven’t seen it. At the beginning after Shrek does his intro as a kid, they jump over to Fiona and they have her in the tower growing up as a little girl, and she gets to a point in her song about waiting, the waiting, the waiting, the waiting, and she gets a little manic/maniac which is part of her character, but this shows you why she is like she is, throughout the rest of the musical. People develop into the people they are and have the character they do because of their life experiences. Those “waiting for stuff to happen” times. FYI this is me figuring this out!


So this week we’re finishing up VBS, and a lot of us teaching, have been doing our studying and getting ready for class. In some of my devotions, I’ve come across a lot of different people in the Bible. You wonder what all these people have in common, they waited on the Lord. Hannah waited, Noah waited, Sarah waited, Abraham waited, there are many times in Paul’s life where he waited, even John whose life was the same length as ours, had many times where he just was with the Lord waiting. I make that distinction because in Noah’s time people live to be 900 years old. It took Noah 120 years to build the ark, that’s a long time to have faith in the Lord and fulfill a project that he is giving you and wait to see it completed. Over 100 years to wait to see rain, something never seen or heard of before.

We live in what I like to call the microwave age, other people call it the Burger King age. It’s referred to like that because most people want things in an instant, and how they want it, not how it comes! They don’t have to wait on anything, they’ve never had to learn patience, or develop character in that time of waiting. In the end they are very shallow people. Waiting and everything that comes with it brings depth to a person. Things that happen during that time, the ups and downs, emotional upheaval, depending on the Lord, having faith that He will see us through to the end of the promise that He has given, and staying focused the whole time, the challenge of all of those things while waiting, that’s what develops the depth of a person’s character. So if you’ve never had to wait, have you truly ever developed a character worth knowing? If you’ve never waited on the Lord, then what kind of character do you have?

Noah-builds-the-ark_Noahs-Obedience Needless to say at the moment, and purpose of this blog post is to share what I’m going through at the moment. Which as you can tell is a time of waiting on the Lord. I have to stop and think about what needs to happen during this time of waiting before I am prepared for what ever it is that is coming my way when the waiting is over. Noah was prepared, Hannah was prepared, Sarah was blown away and had to laugh, and wait some more. May His Son shine on you and me as I continue to wait upon Him.

Update: As of 2/26/2020 I was rereading this, this morning. I found so many errors. Really glad I found an editor to help me out. I also realized just how much truth is in this blog post and how much I myself needed to read my own words and remember. Remember the stories in the Bible of those who waited patiently on God to do as He promised and those who jumped the gun and decided they could do it better. Remember and go back a revisit those stories. We have them for a reason. I encourage you to do the same if you struggle with waiting on God. His timing is not our timing, He does not work for Burger King.