Day 21~ Luke 16, Matt. 18, Luke 17:1-10
Hello All! I will be the guest blogger for the next week and I am excited to participate on this great platform!
Luke 16 started off with the Parable of the Shrewd Manager. This is not a parable that my mind often reflects upon during my day to day life, as opposed to the Sowing of the Seed, or the Prodigal Son. However, the message of this parable encourages us to desire heavenly riches and not earthy riches and therefore the message is of great importance and should be committed to memory.
At first, I read the parable as I would read the Prodigal son, in which I would be the prodigal son (here the manager) and God is the welcoming Father (here the rich man). However, upon further inspection, I do not believe that the rich man resembles God, nor are we encouraged to act as the manager did. First, I find it unlikely that Jesus would compare his all-knowing Father to an aloof rich man who is oblivious to the management of his money and personal assets. Second, Jesus would not encourage believers to act shrewdly and at all costs (despite the impact on the rich man or others) secure worldly riches and stability. Third, it is a rich man or worldly man that would commend shrewdness. Jesus commends honesty, sacrificial love, and meekness. (to name a few) (Matthew 5:5)
If my interpretation is correct, then this parable is rather used to contrast a non-believers work ethic with the effort that Christ followers should be exerting to storing up treasures in Heaven! If non believers work feverishly to store up treasures here on earth that are fleeting, then how much more should believers be committing their time and energy toward glorifying God! Luke 16:9 discusses using worldly wealth to “make friends for yourselves” in order for these friends to welcome one into eternal life. In order for them to welcome one into eternal life they must be Christ followers. Therefore “make friends for yourselves,” cannot be confined to treating neighbors well and taking them out to a dinner or ski trip. Rather, it appears like we are being called to utilize worldly wealth in order to donate to the needy, to be available to personally serve, and to bless others with platforms so that other believers are provided with an opportunity to evangelize and share the gospel to these “friends” that will develop into eternal companions as fellow Christ followers.