Luke 16. 1- 13
We just heard a passage that raises so many questions. Why would our Lord Jesus Christ commend a dishonest person. When you look at the parable closely we are able to understand what our Lord Jesus Christ is expecting of us. There is a rich man who had a manager working for him. He hears that his wealth is not managed properly. Perhaps he has been using the rich man’s wealth just for his own benefit and not showing any profit. The rich man summons the manager and tells him that he is going to sack him and wants to see the account books. The manager acts quickly. He needs to find acceptance and friendship amongst the people. Till now he was using the wealth of the rich man just for his own benefit. Now he does something very shrewd, he writes down the debt of the people. To the one who owes 100 jugs of olive oil, he asks him to write it as 50. To the one who owes 100 containers of wheat he asks him to write as 80. The master surprisingly is very happy seeing what the manager has done. The master is happy that his wealth is shared among all. The master is so full of grace and goodness, that he commends the act of goodness of the manager. Our Lord goes on to tell that a person cannot serve two masters. The two masters are God and mammon. Serving mammon makes one selfish and uncaring, manipulative and greedy. Serving God makes us share and even sacrifice. Serving God is to be good to all. Everything that exists belong to God and God is the owner and master. Wealth cannot be ones master though wealth is essential for life. Wealth even gained dishonestly should be shared with others. Jesus obviously is not promoting gaining dishonest wealth but even if wealth is gained by dishonest means it should be shared. Sharing and giving creates such happiness than selfishness and greed. Jesus mentions about true riches, riches in heaven. We can store up riches in heaven by kindness and sharing with those in need and with those who are in desperate situations. While riches of the earth and the riches of heaven are contrasted as opposites, Jesus in this parable tells us wealth shared with those in need and with those who are deprived gives meaning to our wealth.