Is the rich man & Lazarus literal?

…This very story of "the rich man & Lazarus got
me thinking: like 1. Is it possible that heaven and
hell are so close
to each other that a conversation can be held
between the inhabitants of heaven and hell?
2. Can those in heaven look down and see
people burning in hell?
3. Can they hear the screams?
4. Would a finger dipped in water lesson the
torment in a burning hell?
#bearing in mind its a parable!

You are over thinking it. This is a simple parable told by Jesus to reinforce the concept of God’s justice and our duty to our neighbor. It is a parable, a story with a theological point. It is not a theological treatise on heaven and hell.

Is the Kingdom of God literally a wedding banquet where we literally have to wear a wedding garment (Matthew 22:19-14)?

Is the Kingdom of God literally a bush that birds nest in (Matthew 13:31)?

Does God literally tell every person when they are going to die (Luke 12:13-21)?

Does God literally kill a fattened calf when we repent (Luke 15:29 11-32)?

As you can see, we can pick apart any detail from a parable and take it to an extreme. The parable’s main point is fairly obvious but also very insightful for our lives, thus its lasting value through two millennia. There’s enough to meditate on right there, don’t let yourself get distracted in circles…

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