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What Is Abraham’s Bosom?

In the Bible passage of Luke 16:19-31, the Lord Jesus mentions a place called Abraham’s Bosom.  He is telling a story that some consider to be a parable, or an illustrative story. There are some 46 parables that Jesus tells throughout His three years of ministry. The parables usually are built around ‘a certain man’ or ‘a woman’, women baking bread, someone knocking on doors or some other illustrative situation to teach a spiritual truth to physical people. However, the people are never named.

What Is A Parable?

The best teacher is the one who takes a difficult subject and makes it easy to understand.  The Lord Jesus used parables to teach spiritual truths as He is the world’s greatest teacher.  He taught parables to address the hypocrisy of religious people and many other things. Agani, parables never name specific people, stories do sometimes identify people.  In the passage in Luke about Abraham’s Bosom, the story is about a specific beggar named Lazarus, and a rich man.  Most students of the Bible conclude this is not a parable at all but a story about actual people.  Specifically, about Lazarus and another unnamed rich man in the afterlife.  Before Jesus, we are told in Hebrews 10:4 that the blood of lambs and goats (animal sacrifices of the Jewish temple) just covers human sin.  However, after the death and resurrection of Jesus, the blood of Jesus cleans us from all sin.  In fact, 1 John 1:7 confirms the blood of Jesus was shed for us and completely cleans us.

What Happened To People Before Jesus?

However, before the death and resurrection of Jesus if people were just covered by the blood of innocent animals sacrificed for them, where did these people go at death?  The answer is simple, they went to a place that was not hell, but was considered paradise.  Jesus identifies it as a place called Abraham’s Bosom in Luke 16:23.

Abraham’s Bosom was a holding places for those who had called on God but were waiting for the redemption of Jesus the Messiah.  In Ephesians 4:8, we see Jesus lead those who were captive or stuck in this ‘limbo’ between heaven, where they belonged and redemption.  Jesus emptied Abraham’s Bosom of all the people who had faith in God, as that was all that was there, and now the place is empty.

No Longer

Abraham’s Bosom is only mentioned one place in the Bible.  We no longer talk about the place as there are no longer people in limbo between being with God or being eternally separated from God.  In 2 Corinthians 5:8, we know that absence from the body is being in the presence of the Lord.  You are a three part being (read more on the three part being here).  When you (the sprit being with a soul) leave your body, it stops breathing.  Or shall we say, when you stop breathing, your spirit leaves your body.  It’s the same. From that point, you either go to be with God eternally, or you are separated from God and His people (Why Do People Go To Hell?).  Jesus who has made us holy before the Father and He emptied Abraham’s Bosom when He went to hell on our behalf.  However, you must accept what He has done for you.

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