As Iron Sharpens Iron

An ongoing and online discussion between: an Orthodox informed Ecumaniac without a denominational home, an ordained Baptist youth pastor with an open mind, a Calvinist worship leader/seminarian with a staggering vocabulary and ability to make a point, and a cradle Catholic with a love/hate relationship to Rome.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Feastday of St. Lazarus the Poor


Lazar and Dives lyveden diversly,

And divers gerdon hadden they therby.
- Summoner from Canterbury Tales

"Rich Lazarus! richer in those gems, thy tears,
Than Dives in the robes he wears:
He scorns them now, but oh they'll suit full well
With the purple he must wear in hell."

- Richard Cranshaw "On Lazarus and His Tears"


Top panel: Lazarus at the rich man's door
Middle panel: Lazarus' soul is carried to Paradise by two angels; Lazarus in Abraham's bosom
Bottom panel: Dives' soul is carried off by two devils to Hell; Dives is tortured in Hell


A slave spiritual about the parable:

Antiphon:
Dip your finger in the water,
come and cool my tongue,
cause I'm tormented in the flame.

Verses:
Poor man Lazarus, sick and disabled,
He had to eat crumbs from the rich man's table.

Rich man Dives he lived so well,
And when he died he went straight to hell,

I love to shout, I love to sing,
I love to praise my heavenly King,



Child Ballad #56: Lazarus and Dives

Version A Version B

AS it fell out upon a day,
Rich Dives he made a feast,
And he invited all his friends,
And gentry of the best.

Then Lazarus laid him down and down,
And down at Dives’ door:
‘Some meat, some drink, brother Dives,
Bestow upon the poor.’

‘Thou art none of my brother, Lazarus,
That lies begging at my door;
No meat nor drink will I give thee,
Nor bestow upon the poor.’

Then Lazarus laid him down and down,
And down at Dive’s wall:
‘Some meat, some drink, brother Dives,
Or with hunger starve I shall.’

'Thou art none of my brother, Lazarus,
That lies begging at my wall;
No meat nor drink will I give thee,
But with hunger starve you shall.’

Then Lazarus laid him down and down,
And down at Dive’s gate:
‘Some meat, some drink, brother Dives,
For Jesus Christ sake.’

‘Thou art none of my brother, Lazarus,
That lies begging at my gate;
No meat nor drink will I give thee,
For Jesus Christ his sake.’

Then Dives sent out his merry men,
To whip poor Lazarus away;
They had no power to strike a stroke,
But flung their whips away.

Then Dives sent out his hungry dogs,
To bite him as he lay;
They had no power to bite at all,
But licked his sores away.

As it fell out upon a day,
Poor Lazarus sickened and died;
Then came two angels out of heaven
His soul therein to guide.

‘Rise up, rise up, brother Lazarus,
And go along with me;
For you’ve a place prepared in heaven,
To sit on an angel’s knee.’

As it fell out upon a day,
Rich Dives sickened and died;
Then came two serpents out of hell,
His soul therein to guide.

‘Rise up, rise up, brother Dives,
And go with us to see
A dismal place, prepared in hell,
From which thou canst not flee.’

Then Dives looked up with his eyes,
And saw poor Lazarus blest:
‘Give me one drop of water, brother Lazarus,
To quench my flaming thirst.

‘Oh had I as many years to abide
As there are blades of grass,
Then there would be an end, but now
Hell’s pains will ne’er be past.

‘Oh was I now but alive again,
The space of one half hour!
Oh that I had my peace secure!
Then the devil should have no power.’

AS it fell out upon one day,
Rich Diverus he made a feast,
And he invited all his friends,
And gentry of the best.

And it fell out upon one day,
Poor Lazarus he was so poor,
He came and laid him down and down.
Evn down at Diverus’ door.

So Lazarus laid him down and down
Even down at Diverus’ door:
‘Some meat, some drink, brother Diverus,
Do bestow upon the poor.’

‘Thou art none of mine, brother Lazarus,
Lying begging at my door:
No meat, no drink will I give thee,
Nor bestow upon the poor.’

Then Lazarus laid him down and down,
Even down at Diverus’ wall:
‘Some meat, some drink, brother Diverus,
Or surely starve I shall.

‘Thou art none of mine, brother Lazarus,
Lying begging at my wall;
No meat, no drink will I give thee,
And therefore starve thou shall.’

Then Lazarus laid him down and down,
Even down at Diverus’ gate:
‘Some meat, some drink, brother Diverus,
For Jesus Christ his sake.’

'Thou art none of mine, brother Lazarus,
Lying begging at my gate;
No meat, no drink will I give thee,
For Jesus Christ his sake.

Then Diverus sent out his merry men all,
To whip poor Lazarus away;
They had not power to whip one whip,
But threw their whips away.

Then Diverus sent out his hungry dogs,
To bite poor Lazarus away;
They had not power to bite one bite,
But licked his sores away.

And it fell out upon one day,
Poor Lazarus he sickened and died;
There came two angels out of heaven,
His soul thereto to guide.

‘Rise up, rise up, brother Lazarus,
And come along with me;
There is a place prepared in heaven,
For to sit upon an angel’s knee.’

And it fell out upon one day
Rich Diverus he sickened and died;
There came two serpents out of hell,
His soul thereto to guide.

‘Rise up, rise up, brother Diverus,
And come along with me;
There is a place prepared in hell,
For to sit upon a serpent’s knee.’

- Dives is Latin for "rich."


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