“Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’ ‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’” (Luke 16:29-31 NIV84)
Jesus ends His parable of the rich man and Lazarus with a startling statement about how important the Word of God is to one’s salvation. The rich man, who is in torment in hell, is asking Abraham to send Lazarus to his brothers to warn them of the outcome for those who die without a right relationship with God. The rich man’s point is that if Lazarus would come back from the dead and go warn his brothers of their impending doom, they would be shocked into believing and would listen to Lazarus. Abraham tells the rich man, “If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.” You see, we do not get shocked into believing! We get born again through the power of the Word of God. If we reject God’s Word, then no miracle, no matter how spectacular, is going to convince us to believe. It’s the Word of God that matters most! Want more proof?
Jesus died and rose again nearly 2,000 years ago. Yes, He rose from the dead! He came back to life. He spent weeks and weeks with His disciples after His resurrection. He is the only teacher, philosopher, prophet, religious leader to ever come back from the dead. And then, as today, there are those who remain unconvinced. They are unconvinced because they reject the very Word of God, which has the power to create faith. They reject the Word of God that clearly predicted that Jesus would rise from the dead. Miracles, no matter how spectacular, only affirm the Word of God.
We must clearly be beacons of light to this dark world. We must share the Word of God with those whom God has placed in our lives. God’s Word is the most powerful entity in the universe. His Word created all that is, and it sustains creation to this day. Our focus must be on the transforming power of the Word of God and not miracles and wonders.
Today, may our internal faith and our external witness be firmly rooted in the Word of God.