The closed gate becomes the chasm.
Luke 16: 22-26 “22 “The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 In Hades, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. 24 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.’ 25 “But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. 26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been set in place, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’
If you don’t open the accessible gate in this present life and help people then the chasm will be too wide in the next life to receive any help that you need.
What you do on earth has massive consequences to what happens to you in the next life.
Jesus is welcoming the sinners, the Pharisees who love their money (v14) are not.
The 2 men, one rich and one poor are no longer separated by the closed gate. Now it is an eternal chasm that can never be crossed.
What you have on earth is no indicator of what you will have after you have died.
The 2 men die. Even the rich and the ones who lord it over others get old and die.
The beggar is named first, his death seems more prominent.
The rich man also dies. He isn’t carried by the angels. He is buried in Hades. The Jews saw that as a resting torturous place before the final judgment.
You reap what you sow. This is not about what you have or don’t have. This is about what did you do to others with what you had?
The rich man never even gave a cup of cold water. Now he is longing for just a finger of cold water.
How he must have wished he could turn the clock back and have opened the gate to the poor man. But it is too late. The chasm is set.
The sad fact is that this is not just a rich man, this is a son of Abraham (v25), a religious man. How can the religious not have big generous hearts to people? Shocking that this may sound, the religious man will have a long time to think that over.
Swing wide the gate, welcome the sinner and get onto the right side of the chasm.