Abraham's Bosom

QUESTION: “The Bible says that when Lazarus died he was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom (cf. Luke 16:22). What does this mean?”
ANSWER: This is an interesting Bible question; thank you for submitting it. Note:
1. A good commentary on the passage you mentioned is John 13:23. Now there was leaning (reclining–mb) on Jesus’ bosom one of His disciples, whom Jesus loved.”.
2. To appreciate Luke 16:22, we need to understand the culture and customs during Bible times. “The Roman custom of reclining at meals was common among the Jews. Such positioning placed one in the bosom of the neighboring person.”/1 “In that ancient culture, people did not sit in chairs around a table as we do today. Rather, the table was low to the floor and the guests ‘reclined’ on pallets by the table. If one was an especially honored guest, he reclined next to the host, and so, in the idiom of that day, he was said to be ‘in the bosom’ of his host.”/2
3. Christ is described in Scripture as being “in the bosom” of the Father (cf. John 1:18); this suggests a close relationship. Thus, when the Bible says that Lazarus was carried into Abraham’s bosom, it simply means that upon his death he was taken to a realm of great honor. “Because Abraham was the founder of the Hebrew nation, to be honored with his intimacy was the highest bliss.”/3
1/ Holman Bible Dictionary, 10.
2/ Wayne Jackson, Notes from the Margin of My Bible, Vol. 2, 31.
3/ The Zondervan Pictorial Bible Dictionary, 6

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