Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Luke 16:21

and longing to be fed with the crumbs which were falling from the rich man's table; besides, even the dogs were coming and licking his sores.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Beggars;   Dead (People);   Dog (Sodomite?);   Jesus, the Christ;   Jesus Continued;   Poor;   Rich, the;   Worldliness;   Scofield Reference Index - Parables;   Thompson Chain Reference - Accumulation of Wealth;   Animals;   Dogs;   Earnestness-Indifference;   Earthly;   Friendless;   Friendship-Friendlessness;   Mercy;   Neglect;   Poverty-Riches;   Riches, Earthly;   Treasures, Earthly;   Wealth;   The Topic Concordance - Damnation;   Wealth;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Bread;   Dog, the;   Happiness of the Wicked, the;   Parables;   Riches;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Lazarus;   Parable;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Animals;   Food;   Government;   Justice;   Lazarus;   Lending;   Luke, gospel of;   Sheol;   Wealth;   Work;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Abraham's Bosom;   Ethics;   Hades;   Hell;   Hospitality;   Immortality;   Intermediate State;   Jesus Christ;   Statute;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Hell;   CARM Theological Dictionary - Soul sleep;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Banquet;   Beg;   Lazarus;   Poor;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Divination;   Eleazar;   Lazarus;   Poor;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Dives;   Intermediate State;   Lazarus;   Leprosy;   Luke, Gospel of;   Parables;   Wrath, Wrath of God;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Descent into Hades;   Ethics;   Lazarus;   Parable;   Sin;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Almsgiving ;   Animals;   Beggar;   Church (2);   Common Life;   Desire;   Discourse;   Dives;   Ebionism (2);   Heart;   Hell ;   Judgment;   Lazarus;   Lust;   Man (2);   Parable;   Property (2);   Reality;   Restoration;   Sanctify, Sanctification;   Steward, Stewardship;   Sympathy;   Wealth (2);   Winter ;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Lazarus ;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Chief parables and miracles in the bible;   Lazarus;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Laz'arus;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Jesus of Nazareth;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Crumb;   Immortal;   Lazarus;   Parable;   Poverty;   Punishment, Everlasting;   Sore;   Table;   Wealth;   Kitto Biblical Cyclopedia - Banquets;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Abraham's Bosom;  
Devotionals:
Daily Light on the Daily Path - Devotion for August 30;   Every Day Light - Devotion for December 22;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

And desiring to be fed with the crumbs - And it is likely this desire was complied with, for it is not intimated that he spurned away the poor man from the gate, or that his suit was rejected. And as we find, Luke 16:24, that the rich man desired that Lazarus should be sent with a little water to him, it is a strong intimation that he considered him under some kind of obligation to him; for, had he refused him a few crumbs in his lifetime, it is not reasonable to suppose that he would now have requested such a favor from him; nor does Abraham glance at any such uncharitable conduct on the part of the rich man.

We may now observe,

    II. In what the punishment of this man consisted.

1. Lazarus dies and is carried into Abraham's bosom. By the phrase, Abraham's bosom, an allusion is made to the custom at Jewish feasts, when three persons reclining on their left elbows on a couch, the person whose head came near the breast of the other, was said to lie in his bosom. So it is said of the beloved disciple, John 13:25. Abraham's bosom was a phrase used among the Jews to signify the paradise of God. See Josephus's account of the Maccabees, chap. xiii.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/luke-16.html. 1832.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

And desiring to be fed with the crumbs that fell from the rich man's table; yea, even the dogs came and licked his sores.

There is no word here that the rich man denied the small favor of the crumbs, there being, in fact, no hint that he even knew Lazarus was there. That he did know, however, appears later in the story.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/luke-16.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And desiring to be fed with the crumbs,.... The offal food, broken bread, fragments of meat: that food which falls from the knife, or plate, in eating, and from thence on the ground; and literally understood, may express the low condition Christ was in, in his human nature: he assumed a true body, like to ours, and partook of the same flesh and blood with us, and was liable to the same infirmities as ours, which are sinless; and among the rest, was subject to hunger and thirst, and was obliged to the ministration of others for a subsistence: and it may also express his contentment in such a condition; he never murmured at the providence of God, but was entirely, resigned to his will; he did not desire to live in fulness and affluence, but avoided and shunned every step that led unto it; nor did he envy the plenty of others, and was fully satisfied with his meanness; nor did he ever work a miracle for the sake of feeding himself. Moreover, the words being understood mystically, may design the elect of God among the Jews, who, like crumbs, were few in number, a seed, a remnant, according to the election of grace; there were but few among them that were chosen of God, and effectually called by his grace; and but a little flock to whom he gave the kingdom; and a small number, who entered in at the strait gate, and were saved; and these few were very mean and despicable for their outward poverty; for the poor had the Gospel preached to them, and they received it, when the rich, and the rulers of the people, rejected it: and they were like crumbs their small degree of worldly wisdom and knowledge, being babes, simple, and foolish, who followed Christ, while the learned, wise, and prudent despised him; and for their sinfulness and vileness, being, generally speaking, notorious sinners, publicans and harlots; and of these it may be said what follows,

which fell from the rich man's table; being originally of the Jews, but separated from them by the grace of God, and rejected by them with scorn and contempt. These Christ "desired"; see Song of Solomon 7:10 his desire was towards them from everlasting, when he asked them of his Father, and they were given to him; and it was not only after their persons, but after their salvation, and that both in eternity and in time; and which he signified by various words and actions; and it is towards them, while in a state of unregeneracy, that they may be converted, and believe in him; and when they are called, he delights in the grace he puts in them, and in the righteousness he puts upon them; he takes pleasure in their company; he desires them for his habitation; he stands at the door and knocks for admission to them; and nothing is he more earnestly solicitous for, and eager after, than their being with him in glory to all eternity; and his end in all, "is to be fed" or "satisfied with them"; see Isaiah 53:11 he came into the world to gather these scattered crumbs and fragments together; it was his meat and drink, to work out their salvation; and it will be his highest joy and pleasure to present them to his Father, and himself, complete and perfect, and introduce them into his kingdom and glory: he will be fully satisfied in them, and they in him, when they shall awake in his likeness. Then will all Christ's desires, prayers, and intercessions, have their full accomplishment. The Vulgate Latin adds, "and no man gave to him"; which seems to be transcribed from Luke 15:16 and is not supported by any copy or version.

Moreover, the dogs came and licked his sores: by the dogs are meant not the Jews, though they are sometimes so called, and especially the Scribes and Pharisees, Psalm 22:16 for these made his sores and wounds, or were the authors of his sorrows and sufferings; but rather the Gentiles, who were so called by the Jews; See Gill on Matthew 15:26 because these creatures were unclean by the law, and had in the greatest contempt by the Jews; and for their barbarity, malice, and cruelty, Deuteronomy 23:18 as the Gentiles were by the Jews esteemed unclean and unfit, either for civil or religious conversation; and were treated as aliens by them; and were indeed in their Heathenish state, barbarous and inhuman, and lived in malice, hateful, and hating one another: these, some of them came to Christ in person, as the centurion, and Syrophenician woman, many of the Samaritans, who, with the Jews, were all one as Heathens, and several Grecians at the feast; and many of them also came to him by faith, through the ministry of his servants, under the influence of divine grace, and that according to various prophecies in the Old Testament, concerning the calling and gathering of the Gentiles to him: these embraced a crucified Christ; and fed upon the slain Lamb of God; eat his flesh, and drank his blood; stretched forth the hand of faith, and thrust it into his bleeding wounds; and lived by faith on him, who was wounded and bruised for their sins, and whose blood was shed for the remission of them.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/luke-16.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

desiring to be fed with — but was not [Grotius, Bengel, Meyer, Trench, etc.]. The words may mean indeed “was fain to feed on,” or “gladly fed on,” as in Luke 15:16 [Alford, Webster and Wilkinson, etc.]. But the context rather favors the former.

licked, etc. — a touching act of brute pity, in the absence of human relief. It is a case of heartless indifference, amidst luxuries of every kind, to one of God‘s poorest and most afflicted ones, presented daily before the eye.

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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/luke-16.html. 1871-8.

People's New Testament

The dogs... licked his sores. How abject his lot! Helpless, a beggar, glad to get crumbs, the dogs around him licking his sores! Such a lot the world would despise.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Original work done by Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
Bibliographical Information
Johnson, Barton W. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "People's New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pnt/luke-16.html. 1891.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

With the crumbs that fell (απο των πιπτοντωνapo tōn piptontōn). 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 (αλλα και οι κυνεςalla kai hoi kunes). For αλλα καιalla kai see also Luke 12:7; Luke 24:22. ΑλλαAlla 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 (επελειχον τα ελκη αυτουepeleichon ta helkē autou). Imperfect active of επιλειχωepileichō a late vernacular Koiné 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.

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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
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Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/luke-16.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Desiring ( ἐπιθυμῶν )

Eagerly, and not receiving what he desired. The same thing is implied in the story of the prodigal, where the same word is used, “he would fain have been filled” (Luke 15:16), but the pods did not satisfy his hunger.

The crumbs that fell ( τῶν πιπτόντων )

Lit., the things falling. The best texts omit ψιχίων , crumbs.

Moreover ( ἀλλὰ καὶ )

Lit., but even. “But (instead of finding compassion), even the dogs,” etc.

Licked ( ἐπέλειχον )

Only here in New Testament. Cyril, cited by Hobart, says: “The only attention, and, so to speak, medical dressing, which his sores received, was from the dogs who came and licked them.”

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/luke-16.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

The Fourfold Gospel

and desiring to be fed with the [crumbs] that fell from the rich man's table1; yea, even the dogs come and licked his sores2.

  1. And desiring to be fed with the [crumbs] that fell from the rich man's table. The contrast here is sharp. Lazarus is naked and clothed with sores instead of rich apparel, and desires crumbs instead of a banquet. That he limited his desire to crumbs suggests a freedom from both worldly lust and envy. Whether he got the crumbs is not stated. His sufferings may have been as unmitigated on earth as those of the rich man were in Hades (Luke 16:24), and it is certain that even if he received the crumbs they did not count as a gift, being mere refuse, utterly worthless in the sight of the rich man. The very point of the parable is that the rich man "gave" him nothing.

  2. Yea, even the dogs come and licked his sores. The dogs also suggest a contrast. The rich man is surrounded by the loyal brethren and attentive servants, while Lazarus is the companion of dogs, the scavengers of the streets, who treat him with rude compassion as one of their number, soothing his sores with their saliva.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website. These files were made available by Mr. Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
Bibliographical Information
J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "The Fourfold Gospel". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tfg/luke-16.html. Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio. 1914.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.

Ver. 21. And desiring to be fed with the crumbs] Many poor folk have but prisoners’ pittances, which will neither keep them alive nor suffer them to die.

The dogs came and licked his sores] When Sabinus was put to death for whispering against Sejanus, his dog lay down by his dead body, brought to his mouth the bread that was cast to him; and when Sabinus was thrown into the river Tiber, the dog leapt after him, endeavouring to keep him up, that he might not sink into the bottom. Pliny.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/luke-16.html. 1865-1868.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

21.] It would seem that he did obtain this wish, and that, as in ch. Luke 15:16, the ἐπιθ. must mean, he looked for it, willingly took it.

The ἀλλὰ καί seems also to imply, that he got the crumbs: this verse, relating the two points of contrast to the rich man: his only food, the crumbs, with which he longed to fill his belly, but could not:—his only clothing, nakedness and sores, and instead of the boon companions of the rich man, none to pity him but the dogs, who ἐπέλειχον—certainly in pity, not ‘dolorem exasperantes’ (Bengel)—his sores, as they do their own. Such was the state of the two in this world.

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Alford, Henry. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/luke-16.html. 1863-1878.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

Luke 16:21. ἐπιθυμῶν, desiring) So far was he from having in his spirit aught that was lofty [ τὸ ἐν ἀνθρώποις ὑψηλόν], Luke 16:15.—[ ἀπὸ τῶν ψιχίων, of the crumbs) The freedom (immunity) which Lazarus enjoyed from every worldly desire is hereby indicated.—V. g.]— ἀλλὰ καὶ) nay (but) even. This particle, the words, not only so, having to be supplied in the former member, usually intensifies the force of the words which follow.— οἱ κύνες) the dogs, strictly so called [not figuratively]. The utter desertion of the naked and outcast Lazarus is herein denoted. The words, the angels, in Luke 16:22, form a powerful antithesis to the dogs here.— ἑρχόμενοι, coming) not for Lazarus’ sake, but for their own; as if he were a corpse [a carcase for them to prey upon].— ἀπέλειχον, began to lick off) The structure of the dog’s tongue and its saliva impart relief to a body that is not much diseased; but these exasperate the pain of a body covered over with ulcers (‘sores’).— ἓλκη) sores, full of matter.

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/luke-16.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

See Poole on "Luke 16:19"

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Luke 16:21". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/luke-16.html. 1685.

Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture

Упоминание объедков со стола, струпьев и псов – все это в глазах фарисеев вызывало отвращение к нищему. Во всех подобных вещах они были склонны видеть доказательство Божьего осуждения. Вероятно, они считали такого человека не только нечистым, но также и презираемым Богом.

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MacLaren, Alexander. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mac/luke-16.html.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

21.Desiring to be fed—Jesus does not say being fed; but introduces the dogs as showing a kindness for which he gives no credit to the man. The dogs—The street dogs of the city where the rich man resided. See note on Matthew 7:6. These ferocious and ravening brutes softened to tenderness; but the man had no pity.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/luke-16.html. 1874-1909.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

Luke 16:21. And desiring to be filled, etc. Some think he did not even obtain this desire, and thus heighten the negligence of the rich man.

The crumbs which fell, lit, ‘the things which fell;’ the best authorities omitting ‘crumbs.’ These would scarcely satisfy him; in any case the rich man gave himself no concern about the matter.

Yea, even the dogs came and licked his sores. The dogs sought the same portion, but even they alleviated his pain by licking his sores. It is a mistake to suppose that they heightened his misery by licking his sores, nor is there any proof that they snapped up what he wished to obtain. The pity of the wild and masterless dogs is contrasted with the indifference of the rich man.

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/luke-16.html. 1879-90.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

Luke 16:21. , desiring, perhaps not intended to suggest that his desire was not gratified. Suppose morsels did come to him from the rich man’s table, not meant for him specially, but for the hungry without, including the wild street dogs, would that exhaust the duty of Dives to his poor brother? But the trait is introduced to depict the poor man’s extreme misery rather than the rich man’s sin.— : no ellipse implied such as that supplied by the Vulgate: et nemo illi dabat. Bornemann supplies: “not only was he filled with the crumbs,” etc., but also, etc. ( , , etc.).— simply introduces a new feature, and heightens the picture of misery (so Schanz) = he was dependent on casual scraps for his food, and moreover, etc.— , licked (here only in N.T.); was this an aggravation or a mitigation? Opinion is much divided. Or is the point that dogs were his companions, now licking his sores (whether a benefit or otherwise), now scrambling with him for the morsels thrown out? The scramble was as much a fact as the licking. Furrer speaks of witnessing dogs and lepers waiting together for the refuse (Wanderungen, p. 40).

 

 

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Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/luke-16.html. 1897-1910.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

desiring = eagerly desiring; but in vain, as in Luke 15:16 ("would fain ").

with = from. Greek. apo. App-104.

the crumbs. Some texts read "the things". moreover, &c. = but [instead of finding food] even the dogs, &c.

licked = licked off; i.e. licked clean. Greek. apoleicho. Occurs only here. The texts read epileicho, licked over.

sores. Greek. helkos (= ulcer),

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/luke-16.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.

And desiring to be fed [ epithumoon (G1937) chortastheenai (G5526)] with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table. The meaning may either be (as in Luke 15:16), that 'he was fain to feed' or 'gladly fed,' as Alford, Webster and Wilkinson, etc., take it; or he 'desired to be fed,' but was not: so Grotius, Bengel, Meyer, Trench, etc., understand it. The context seems rather to favour this latter view. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores - a touching act of brute pity in the absence of human relief. Thus have we here a case of heartless indifference, amidst luxuries of every kind, to one of God's poorest and most afflicted ones, presented daily before the view.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/luke-16.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(21) And desiring to be fed with the crumbs.—The habits of the East, the absence of knives and forks and the like, made the amount of waste of this kind larger than do the habits of modern Europe. (Comp. the language of the Syro-Phœnician woman, in Mark 7:28.) Here the picture is heightened by two touches. The dogs are there, and get the crumbs, which the man fails to get, and then they come and lick the open sores. The question has been raised whether this touch is meant to intensify the sufferings of the beggar, or to contrast the almost human sympathy of the brute with the brutal apathy of the man. In a European apologue the latter might, perhaps, be a legitimate explanation of the fact thus stated; but with the Eastern feelings, that see in the dog an unclean beast, the scavenger of the streets, we cannot doubt that the beggar would have shrunk from their licking, even assuming, which is doubtful, that it brought with it some relief from merely physical pain. It may be noted, too, that the word for “dogs” is not the diminutive form used in Matthew 15:27, and Mark 7:28 (where see Note), which implied tameness, but that which is always associated with the idea of abhorrence (Matthew 7:6; Philippians 3:2; 2 Peter 2:22; Revelation 22:15).

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/luke-16.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
desiring
1 Corinthians 4:11; 2 Corinthians 11:27
crumbs
Matthew 15:27; Mark 7:28; John 6:12
Reciprocal: Job 2:8 - took him;  Job 31:16 - withheld;  Isaiah 1:6 - the sole;  Ezekiel 16:49 - neither;  Luke 16:20 - full;  Luke 18:35 - begging

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/luke-16.html.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

21.And even the dogs came. It was quite enough to prove the hardened cruelty of the rich man, that the sight of wretchedness like this did not move him to compassion. Had there been a drop of humanity in him, he ought at least to have ordered a supply from his kitchen for the unhappy man. But the crowning exhibition of his wicked, and savage, and worse than brutal disposition was, that he did not learn pity even from the dogs There can be no doubt that those dogs were guided by the secret purpose of God, to condemn that man by their example. Christ certainly produces them here as witnesses to convict him of unfeeling and detestable cruelty. What could be more monstrous than to see the dogs taking charge of a man, to whom his neighbor is paying no attention; and, what is more, to see the very crumbs of bread refused to a man perishing of hunger, while the dogs are giving him the service of their tongues for the purpose of healing his sores? When strangers, or even brute animals, supply our place, by performing an office which ought rather to have been discharged by ourselves, let us conclude that they are so many witnesses and judges appointed by God, to make our criminality the more manifest.

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on Luke 16:21". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/luke-16.html. 1840-57.