A Targum (a retelling of a known story, adding in contemporary detail)
“There was once a wealthy C.E.O. who always dressed in tailored suits, wore a rolex, often took his private jet to work, and dined at the finest restaurants every night.
Not one block away from his high-rise office was the place where a poor man named Lazarus used to live. His home had been in foreclosure for months, due to predatory loans, his interest rate rising although national rates were falling, and hasty and illegal foreclosure practices. His crisis began in earnest when the wealthy C.E.O. outsourced his job, even though it wasn’t union, to a factory in China, whose workers were paid less than a living wage, worked for brutal hours, and where the C.E.O. did not have to worry about health, safety, or age restrictions for workers.
Lazarus would come by the office of the wealthy C.E.O. most every day in order to perhaps just get a chance to talk to the C.E.O. face to face and make him see what what was happening to people. But the C.E.O. always saw him first, and told his driver to park around back, so he didn’t have to engage “those people.”
It happened soon enough that Lazarus passed away. A special messenger from God came and took him, body and soul to a nice, comfy home that he could enjoy.
About this time, the Wealthy C.E.O. also passed away quite unexpectedly. Buried in the ground near one of his factories, the chemicals from factory runoff eroded his coffin and ate away at his body. Puzzled as to why he was not in heaven, he was given sight beyond sight and saw the poor Lazarus in his comfortable skyward home.
He yelled out to the messenger, ‘Hey! Come here for a second. I can’t help notice that that poor guy up there isn’t doing anything. I remember him, he was always lazy, looking for a handout. Well, tell him to get off of his butt and give me some water so I can wash this toxic crap off of me. Its starting to sting.’
But the messenger said, ‘Sir, don’t you remember all the good things you had in your life? Well, when that poor man (Lazarus is his name, by the way) was alive, contrary to your opinion, he did work hard, and the system you built kept him down. But now it is time for things to be put right. He is comforted, and since you got your comfort already, we’ll leave you to your own devices now.
Besides, while you were alive, you made sure to make a large gap between him and you, and only addressed him when you needed him. So that you can’t use him at your beck and call and then throw him away again, there is now a large gap between you and him in reverse. Sorry about that.’
Then the C.E.O. said, ‘Well, could you at least make poor-boy get up and talk to my fellow C.E.O.s, so that they can fix this problem before it is too late?”
The messenger replied, ‘Most of them go to church. They already know better. Its not like the founder of your religion was ambiguous about this stuff.’
The C.E.O. said, ‘No, you’re right; but if someone were to come back from the dead and tell them, they would listen!’
The messenger, motioning with his hands just enough so that the C.E.O. could see scars on both sides of his wrists, said, ‘Trust me. Even if someone came back from the dead, they wouldn’t do a damn thing differently.’”