The Parable of the Rich man and Lazarus as well as the Parable of the Prodigal Son are famous parables that are found in the Gospel of Luke. Written somewhere between 70-75 AD the Gospel of Luke gives the story of Jesus’s life, the teachings he preached, as well as his death and resurrection. The parables were taught by Jesus to engage Jewish followers with the moral and spiritual principles. The point of this literature was not to convey a historic account of an event but to teach a, or sometimes many, moral lessons. In the case of the Rich man and Lazarus, a story is told about a rich man and beggar who both die only to end up on different sides of heaven and hell. The moral lesson of the story is that one’s soul is immortal but the wealth and possessions of Earth is not. Cementing the idea that the life we live on Earth should not focus on wealth but on moral righteousness. In the Parable of the Prodigal Son, a father’s youngest son leaves with his inheritance only to return dismal and meager yet forgiven and loved by his father. The moral lesson of this story is in illustrating the paths to salvation as done by the two sons. Humans are represented as the sons in this story and the fathers represents God, thus no matter if one sins or make poor decisions, so long as they truly want salvation from God they will receive forgiveness. The parables written in the Gospel of Luke are extremely important in understanding the messages conveyed by Jesus as they teach readers the way God want’s people to live their lives so that they may live with Him in His kingdom. In order to unpack these parables, our group choose to create a Biblical commentary for each parable that aims to illuminate just what Luke aims to convey. Our approach in our commentaries was meant to reflect the Medieval practice of glossing. This is a practiced that was used by monks who wrote notes or thoughts in the margin around the text. As each glossed Bible was passed along, these notes grew larger and built of off each other to explore deeper meaning[i]. Our research into these parables is reflective of this as you will see by exploring the links above. In addition, a video is attached at the bottom of this page that will provide an overview of important themes that resonate across the Gospel of Luke.
i Neusner, Jacob. "The Rabbis and the Prophets: The Case of Amos." Review Of Rabbinic Judaism 18, no. 1 (January 2015): Abstract. Academic Search Complete, EBSCOhost (accessed December 5, 2016).
ii Jesus Preaching. Photograph. Flickr.com. March 15, 2011. Accessed December 5, 2016. https://c2.staticflickr.com/6/5269/5585083308_fcbb067d23_b.jpg.
iii TMCYouthChannel. 2014. The gospel of luke: Lukes themes.