"The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham's side. The rich man also died and was buried. In hell, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. So he called to him, 'Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.'" Luke 16:22-24
The drama continues but the scene changes as well as the scenery. Both the rich man and the beggar have died, their locations have changed and their roles have reversed.
From this insightful story we learn several significant facts about our eventual destiny:
1) Existence Is Eternal
When the beggar died he was carried by an angel into heaven. In this version of the story it was Abraham who was the central figure in heaven. I'm sure Jesus told the story this way because he was telling it to people devoted to Judaism and they revered Abraham. Also, this is prior to His own sacrificial death and resurrection which was an absolute game changer.
Later, the wealthy man passed and the news is not so good for him. He found himself in hell, still alive but extremely tormented. To add to his torment was the fact that he could look up into heaven and see what he had missed.
We believe that the Bible teaches that each of us exist for eternity. From the moment we are conceived and life begins we become eternal beings. The only question is where we will exist. And that is a HUGELY important question.
The nine months we spend in the womb is short compared to the length of our life after we are born. But what happens in that period is extremely important to how life happens after our birth.
In the same way, our earthly life is very short when compared to eternity, but the choices and commitments we make during that life-span is vital to where we will spend eternity.
This story that Jesus told tells us that existence is eternal. The fact that you exist is evidence that you are eternal.
Where will you spend your eternity? Will you live happily ever after?