Abraham's Bosom

Discussions about the Bible, and any issues raised by Scripture.
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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#31

Post by Judah » Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:48 pm

:lol:

Well, I am happy enough with the idea that Jesus was using the term "Abraham's bosom" in the same sense that the Jews understood it, as per the explanation in John Gill's Exposition of the Bible. It served to make His point, but to dissect the story and read more into it than was likely intended does perhaps lead one into some interesting theological difficulties. I prefer to note the point He was making and leave it at that.

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#32

Post by jenna » Mon Dec 03, 2007 4:54 pm

And the point was...? no offense Judah, but what exactly is YOUR point of view on this? :D
some things are better left unsaid, which i generally realize after i have said them

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#33

Post by Judah » Mon Dec 03, 2007 6:42 pm

The original question related to the meaning of the term "Abraham's bosom" and how it was to be understood as it appeared in the context where it is found in Luke 16. Questions were also asked concerning time and place in relation to eternity.

The narrative appears within a group of other parables told by Jesus to teach both the Pharisees and His own disciples matters of spritual truth. The point I understand Jesus is intent on getting across is best elaborated in the words of one commentator as follows:
Here the spiritual things are represented, in a description of the different state of good and bad, in this world and in the other. We are not told that the rich man got his estate by fraud, or oppression; but Christ shows, that a man may have a great deal of the wealth, pomp, and pleasure of this world, yet perish for ever under God's wrath and curse. The sin of this rich man was his providing for himself only. Here is a godly man, and one that will hereafter be happy for ever, in the depth of adversity and distress. It is often the lot of some of the dearest of God's saints and servants to be greatly afflicted in this world. We are not told that the rich man did him any harm, but we do not find that he had any care for him. Here is the different condition of this godly poor man, and this wicked rich man, at and after death. The rich man in hell lifted up his eyes, being in torment. It is not probable that there are discourses between glorified saints and damned sinners, but this dialogue shows the hopeless misery and fruitless desires, to which condemned spirits are brought. There is a day coming, when those who now hate and despise the people of God, would gladly receive kindness from them. But the damned in hell shall not have the least abatement of their torment. Sinners are now called upon to remember; but they do not, they will not, they find ways to avoid it. As wicked people have good things only in this life, and at death are for ever separated from all good, so godly people have evil things only in this life, and at death they are for ever put from them. In this world, blessed be God, there is no gulf between a state of nature and grace, we may pass from sin to God; but if we die in our sins, there is no coming out. The rich man had five brethren, and would have them stopped in their sinful course; their coming to that place of torment, would make his misery the worse, who had helped to show them the way thither. How many would now desire to recall or to undo what they have written or done! Those who would make the rich man's praying to Abraham justify praying to saints departed, go far to seek for proofs, when the mistake of a damned sinner is all they can find for an example. And surely there is no encouragement to follow the example, when all his prayers were made in vain. A messenger from the dead could say no more than what is said in the Scriptures. The same strength of corruption that breaks through the convictions of the written word, would triumph over a witness from the dead. Let us seek to the law and to the testimony, isaiah 8:19,20 , for that is the 2 peter Circumstances in every age show that no terrors, or arguments, can give true repentance without the special grace of God renewing the sinner's heart.
Source

The point that I am making concerns the danger of over-interpreting what is written in Scripture. I believe this passage is a parable, a story for the purposes of teaching something significant (as described above), but not to be stretched further than originally intended. In my opinion, to be asking questions of this parable in terms of whereabouts, time and space dimensions, relationship to resurrection, etc, of the term "Abraham's bosom" used in this context is extending the purpose of the parable beyond that of its ability to answer.

'Tis all. 8)

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#34

Post by phiver4 » Tue Dec 04, 2007 2:32 pm

Judah,

Thank you.
I understand the use of parables in the Bible and I know that in this case I am more than likely over-analyzing but it is very hard when searching for answers to questions that are brought up by the skeptics I encounter. I know that parables are used for teaching but sometimes that would never be a satisfying answer, most of the time, for most of the skeptics out there.

I guess I have to realize that if a person's mind is not open for any other view and will be un-convinced no matter what evidence is provided, then it is time to move on and pray that one day God will open their minds...even just a fraction of a millimeter.
Thanks again.

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#35

Post by oscarsiziba » Mon Dec 31, 2007 4:03 am

A wonderful question.Here is the first thing you need to be cognisant of:This was only a parable
2)There is nowhere we are told that Abraham ascended into the heavens,but Enoch did and there is Biblical proof for that.
3)Hell does not exist in the now,but shall be in the day of final-get the word final-there isn't going to be two finals right?
4)Heaven is not for corpses-Lk 16v 22,Rev 21 v 4.Those that shall partake of eternal life are FIRST RESURRECTED-1 Thessa 4v16-17.
5)Abraham is nowhere stated to be in charge of hell,is he?-Lk 16 v 24
6)The supposed 'spirit of the deceased should not have the body as is in this case because verse 22 says.'...he was buried...'.Where then did he get a tongue with which to thirst for water,the mouth?
7)Abraham says in '...in thy lifetime' implying he had lived only one life and to think that he was alive here would be self-contradictory.
Parable was meant to demonstrate and teach the good of always having God even in poverty and the danger of forgetting God and not sharing in our riches.
DID I LEAVE SOMETHING OUT?
God bless.
Like Balaam, they are angry at those who would prevent their ruin.

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#36

Post by frankbaginski » Mon Dec 31, 2007 1:12 pm

I have a different take on the passage. Since Lazarus was named then I don't consider this a parable.

Abraham's Bosom is a place but it may only exist in the spiritual world. So the details as to how it all works is not explained. I have no problems with this.

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#37

Post by FFC » Mon Dec 31, 2007 6:22 pm

frankbaginski wrote:I have a different take on the passage. Since Lazarus was named then I don't consider this a parable.

Abraham's Bosom is a place but it may only exist in the spiritual world. So the details as to how it all works is not explained. I have no problems with this.
I know this has been discussed somewhere else on here but I have always heard that it was not a parable either. If it is I think it is the only one that uses proper names. Even Abraham is mentioned. y:-?
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Act 9:6
And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#38

Post by Judah » Mon Dec 31, 2007 6:56 pm

Maybe a metaphor then?

But why must a parable not include a person's name if that name is understood to be the given name of a place? The source I quoted (the Bible commentator, Matthew Henry) explains it as a reference to a place that the Jews generally understood as being called by that name - such as Kennedy Airport, or Lincoln's Monument, or Jefferson Street or whatever also names a place.

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#39

Post by frankbaginski » Mon Dec 31, 2007 7:52 pm

I heard that parables do not contain names from Chuck Missler who I respect. So until I see reason to change that view I will hold to his opinion. He also said that when a reference is made to a person such as - the doorman - it may be the Holy Spirit and not a man. I have not done any research into either of these opinions.

It seems that hell and Abraham's Bosom are close to each other. So what ever holding place God has created it appears that the souls do possess some kind of physical form. I would suspect that what we know is only a very small part of the picture. The complexity that we see in the physical world is probably nothing compared to the spiritual world. From what I have seen God does not do anything in half measures.

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#40

Post by Canuckster1127 » Mon Dec 31, 2007 8:31 pm

Teaching moment here. :lol: :D

This is an example of several different sincere people looking at a passage and coming up with different meanings for a passage. One sees it as a parable, one sees it as a metaphore, one sees it as a narrative etc.

Yet presumably there is only one meaning intended by God and His Holy Spirit. What is the literal meaning? The literal meaning depends upon what form you decide the passage is because the form will in large part determine how you understand it.

Is it a parable? If it is then there is one primary point Jesus was making and it is overreaching to treat it as an allegory with every element representing something.

Is it a historical narrative? If it is then every element is reflective of objective truth and important to understanding the story?

Is it a metaphore? If it is then some (maybe all but not necessarily) of the elements are representative of a spiritual reality that needs to be understood in terms of what it is representing.

3 (or more) possibilities. 3 different interptetations. All 3 based upon a literal understanding of the text but different depending upon what literary form the reader sees it through to interpret the passage.

That is why it is so presumptuous at times to rail at other Christians and argue what the literal meaning of a passage is. Literal means a lot more than just taking the passage at face value. Literal means accepting the inspiration and then applying an understanding of the the context of the passage as well as the form or forms used and on that basis coming to understand the passage as God inspired it with the meaning He intended as well as understanding what the orginal audience of the text means.

That is why a YEC (or OEC for that matter although OEC's tend to be more tolerant of opposing view points in general) claim of literal interpretation (for example) with regard to Genesis by claiming the forms and meaning they identify to the passage and implying that any other interpretation must reject inspiration is so presumptuous.

Inspiration is not the issue assuming all parties accept inspiration. The literal understanding of the passage is a part of the issue but to determine what that literal meaning is, you have to make some decisions about the passage, who is speaking, to whom, in what form (parable, metaphore, historical narrative etc.), what cultural idioms might be present, what language unique nuances that don't easily translate directly into English etc are present.

For this passage, my opinion is that Judah is closer to the meaning as I believe it is a parable and ties to the other parables present.

You've all done a good job collectively illustrating how important these elements are in understanding a passage though.

Lesson done. Couldn't resist pointing that out. :sleep: You can wake back up now. :shock: :D
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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#41

Post by frankbaginski » Tue Jan 01, 2008 8:24 pm

Canuckster1127,

I have to agree with your post. I of course do not agree with you on this passage but that is not material. The only material matter refers to the salvation of souls. To this end I think we all agree.

I am not trying to change your opinion but I do take scripture as literal unless there is good reason not too. Many people take everything as nonliteral. I have no problem with these people if this leads them to the path of salvation. That is the ring which we all wish to grasp as we spin around the reality of the world. As you can see I unjoy the visual aspect of writing myself. I do believe that the Spirit gives us clues as to when we should interpret the Bible one way verses another. These clues may be of a personal nature, who is to say. The scriptures are way too complex for any of us to understand. To think that we could second guess the Holy Ghost is to be part of this world. This is something I will not do.

So if the lesson to be learned is one of structure and form, or if it is a feeling of the judgements of men, just who am I that could change this. I am of course happy with my decision on how I interpret the verses. But I accept that this may be meant for me. As the Lord said - All things are Possible through Him. I take this to heart on many subects and issues. I do take issue with post that ignore scripture. On this site I do not find many of these.

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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#42

Post by Canuckster1127 » Tue Jan 01, 2008 8:51 pm

frankbaginski wrote:Canuckster1127,

I have to agree with your post. I of course do not agree with you on this passage but that is not material. The only material matter refers to the salvation of souls. To this end I think we all agree.

I am not trying to change your opinion but I do take scripture as literal unless there is good reason not too. Many people take everything as nonliteral. I have no problem with these people if this leads them to the path of salvation. That is the ring which we all wish to grasp as we spin around the reality of the world. As you can see I unjoy the visual aspect of writing myself. I do believe that the Spirit gives us clues as to when we should interpret the Bible one way verses another. These clues may be of a personal nature, who is to say. The scriptures are way too complex for any of us to understand. To think that we could second guess the Holy Ghost is to be part of this world. This is something I will not do.

So if the lesson to be learned is one of structure and form, or if it is a feeling of the judgements of men, just who am I that could change this. I am of course happy with my decision on how I interpret the verses. But I accept that this may be meant for me. As the Lord said - All things are Possible through Him. I take this to heart on many subects and issues. I do take issue with post that ignore scripture. On this site I do not find many of these.
I take Scripture as literal and inspired as well.

There's a standard out there that I see that causes me a little problem. The word "literal" is meant by some to mean the simplest understanding without any literary elements unless there is a reason to look at it otherwise.

I think literal means what God meant the passage to mean in the context of all the different elements that go into understanding a passage such as I mentioned above.

For instance, in the scriptures when Jesus says it is better for a man to gouge out his eye or cut off his hand rather than enter the kingdom of heaven whole, using the idea of "literal" that some use meaning the most simple, evident apparent meaning, would be to take that passage at face value. There'd be a lot of maimed Christians if that were true. What that passage is, is an example of a literary device known as hyperbole where a point is overstated purposely in order to illustrate the importance of the point being made.

My argument is that the "literal" point of the passage is the point that Jesus intended to mean and so the understanding of the literary device IS the literal meaning.

There are times, frequently, when Christians whom I believe are saved come to differing conclusions on important passages because of issues like this and I think in that instance it behooves us to approach the scriptures with humility, prayer and a willingness to change our minds if we find we're looking at it wrong. Sometimes i think the ambiguity is intentional on God's part as well because He chooses to maintain some mystery and a veil around spiritual things. This is the reason stated as to why Jesus spoke in parables, so that only those who were spiritual and attuned to the truth of his teaching would understand and to others it would be foolishness.

Logic and interpretive approaches to Scripture are important. They are not the sole foundation for it however. I think we all need to be reminded of it at times.
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Re: Abraham's Bosom

#43

Post by 7trumpets » Thu Jan 10, 2008 11:42 am

phiver4 wrote:Is there someone who can give me an explanation for Abraham's Bosom?

From my understanding this was a place of rest for those that died during the O.T. times, some type of "compartment" set apart from Hades. These people could not enter Heaven because,even though they were forgiven of their sins through the sacrifices set forth in the O.T., they could not enter Heaven because their sins were not "wiped away" and forgotten. This could only be accomplished through Jesus Christ who was to come later. Jesus then would save these people and bring them into Heaven because only then was His ultimate Sacrafice completed.

I guess I am having a problem with someone being held for a period of time in a place (Abraham's Bosom) where is no dimension of time, a place that is supposed to be eternal. How could these people be "waiting" in a place that is not supposed to have that dimension?
Thank You.
Abraham's Bosom is a "synonym" for life hereafter. According to the Old Testament, when a person died he went to
"be with his fathers". (Gen 15:15,47:30, Deut 31:16, Judges 2:10) The patriach Abraham was regarded as "father". (Luke 3:8, John 8:37-40) So at death you went to your forefathers to join Abraham. Nelsons Bible Dictionary


It is a parable, but it also gives one a picture of what its really like in Heaven.

Luk 16:19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:

Luk 16:20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,


Luk 16:21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
This rich man had showed no compassion to this poor man in life, as they lived here in the flesh. Even the dogs showed more compassion for Lazarus than that rich man, for they came and licked the sores of Lazarus.

Luk 16:22 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;
Lazarus was carried into heaven by the angels of God, while the rich man's body was buried in the ground and his soul went to Hades, the holding place "before" being destroyed by hell fire.

Luk 16:23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
This is a parable about two men that actually lived, and when both died, the rich man could see Lazarus in heaven with Abraham. He could look across that great gulf that stood between them, but could not go there. Our Heavenly Father is the Father of the living and not the dead. Thus to be absent from this physical body of the flesh is to be present with the Lord. (2 Cor 5:7-8)The soul does not go to the grave as the flesh does, but goes immediate to heaven.

All souls can actually see the throne of God from where they are. Those that are on the rich man's side are being held for that great judgment day.

Luk 16:24 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.
What kind of water is this? Living water John 4:14
"tormented in this flame", flame of embarrassment, shame and disgrace because he wasn't a believer.

Luk 16:25 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.
you reap what you sow

Luk 16:26 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.
gulf 5490 casma chasma khas'-mah
from a form of an obsolete primary chao (to "gape" or "yawn"); a "chasm" or vacancy (impassable interval):--gulf.

A gulf that can not be crossed. This space is talked about by the prophet Ezra, or in the Greek "Esdras" in the Apocrypha, in the II Esdras 7:78-87.

Luk 16:27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:
This is the rich man speaking to Abraham/GOD, asking him to send Lazarus back to earth, to witness to his brothers, father and mother.

Luk 16:28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.

Help my five brothers so they don't end up like I am.

Luk 16:29 Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.

Your brothers have the Word of God from the prophets, let them listen to them. That is all they are going to get. That's all your are going to get also, the words by the prophets of God, and the written word that you are studying now. Believe it or not, that's up to you, but if you reject it, and refuse the only way provided, by repentance through the blood of Christ, you will end up exactly where this rich man is. You make the choice for yourself.

Luk 16:30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.

Many people today after hearing the truths still will not repent and accept Him, but continue in their evil ways of self-righteousness.

Luk 16:31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

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