Luke 16:21

With the crumbs that fell (apo twn piptontwn). From the things that fell from time to time. The language reminds one of Luke 15:16 (the prodigal son) and the Syro-Phoenician woman ( Mark 7:28 ). Only it does not follow that this beggar did not get the scraps from the rich man's table. Probably he did, though nothing more. Even the wild street dogs would get them also. Yea, even the dogs (alla kai oi kune). For alla kai see also Mark 12:7 ; Mark 24:22 . Alla can mean "yea," though it often means "but." Here it depends on how one construes Luke's meaning. If he means that he was dependent on casual scraps and it was so bad that even the wild dogs moreover were his companions in misery, the climax came that he was able to drive away the dogs. The other view is that his hunger was unsatisfied, but even the dogs increased his misery. Licked his sores (epeleicon ta elkh autou). Imperfect active of epileicw, a late vernacular Koin verb, to lick over the surface. It is not clear whether the licking of the sores by the dogs added to the misery of Lazarus or gave a measure of comfort, as he lay in his helpless condition. "Furrer speaks of witnessing dogs and lepers waiting together for the refuse" (Bruce). It was a scramble between the dogs and Lazarus.