And he cried and said, father Abraham
The Jews used to call Abraham their father, and were proud of their descent from him, ( Matthew 3:9 ) ( John 8:33 John 8:39 ) and so persons are after death represented by them, as speaking to, and discoursing with him; as in the passage cited in the note (See Gill on Luke 16:22) to which the following may be added F3;
``says R. Jonathan, from whence does it appear that the dead discourse with each other? it is said, ( Deuteronomy 34:4 ) "And the Lord said unto him, this is the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, saying" what is the meaning of the word "saying?" the holy blessed God said to Moses, "go say to Abraham"''And here the Jews, in their distress, are represented as applying to him, saying,
have mercy on me, and send Lazarus;
which seems to have respect to the mercy promised to Abraham, the covenant made with him, and the oath swore unto him, to send the Messiah, ( Luke 1:70 Luke 1:73 ) and which now, too late, these wretched Jews plead, the Messiah being sent already:
that he may dip the tip of his finger in water;
in allusion to the washings and purifications among the Jews, and the sprinkling of blood by the finger of the high priest; which were typical of cleansing, pardon, comfort, and refreshment, by the grace and blood of Christ:
and cool my tongue;
which had spoken so many scurrilous and blasphemous things of Christ; saying that he was a sinner, a glutton, and a winebibber, a Samaritan, and had a devil; that he cast out devils by Beelzebub, the prince of devils; and that he was a seditious person, and guilty of blasphemy: so the Jews represent persons in hell, desirous of cooling water, and as sometimes favoured with it, and sometimes not: they say F4, he that reads "Keriat Shema, (i.e. hear, O Israel") and very accurately examines the letters of it, (Nynnum) , "they cool hell for him", as it is said, ( Psalms 68:14 ) . And elsewhere F5, they speak of a disciple, or good man, that was seen after death amidst gardens, and orchards, and fountains of water; and of a publican, or wicked man, seen standing by the bank of a river, seeking (yjm alw aym yjmm) , "to come to the water, but could not come at it". So Mahomet F6 has a passage that is somewhat like to this text;
``the inhabitants of hell fire, shall call to the inhabitants of paradise, saying, pour upon us some water, or of those refreshments God hath bestowed on you.''This man could not so much as get a drop of water to cool his tongue, not the least refreshment, nor mitigation of the anguish of his conscience, for the sins of his tongue:
for I am tormented in this flame;
in the destruction of Jerusalem, and calamities at Bither, and other afflictions; together with the wrath of God poured into the conscience, and the bitter remorses of that for speaking against the Messiah; and which are still greater in hell, where the worm dies not, and the fire is not quenched.
F3 T. Bab. Beracot, fol. 18. 2.
F4 Ib. fol. 15. 2.
F5 T. Hieros. Sanhedrin, fol. 23. 3. & Chagiga, fol, 77. 4.
F6 Koran, c. 7. p. 121. (sura 7:50)