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Daily Worship


May 2 | Luke 16:1-15





The Wise and Godly Manager

by Kristin Schoeff

Jesus truly was a master storyteller, and he used his parables to teach the crowds who came to hear him. Often, his point may seem clear to us, but at times, the parables of Jesus are puzzling – even baffling. Reading and studying this parable of the dishonest steward, I learned that many people consider it to be the most difficult to understand of all the parables recorded in the Gospels. That has always been my take on it as well!


But don’t you love the fact that Jesus’ disciples, when they couldn’t understand his meaning, came to him in private and said, “Explain to us the parable….”? (Matthew 13:36)  His disciples asked him “Why do You speak to the crowds in parables?” and he answered, “To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted.” (Matthew 13:11)


So as we read today’s passage and its odd seeming commendation of the Dishonest (ESV), Shrewd (NIV) Manager, let’s come and ask Jesus what mysteries of the kingdom he wants to teach us through it.


As I’ve studied and reflected on this, I’ve definitely come to the conclusion that Jesus’ point was NOT to commend dishonesty, but rather to teach those who follow him about the wise use of money and material goods that have been entrusted to us by our Lord and Master. After telling the story, Jesus immediately made it personal: “I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.” (Luke 16:9)


What a stark contrast: the shrewd and dishonest manager manipulated the accounts of those who owed his master so that when he ran out of money, those whom he had helped would welcome him into their homes. (Luke 16:4) But Jesus told his followers to use their wealth to win friends (and many commentaries consider this to be at least in part by investing in Gospel work, winning people to Christ), so that when the day comes when our lives on earth are finished and money no longer is of use to us, we can rejoice as we enter our heavenly home, as we’ve made it our true treasure.


Jesus concludes his lesson by letting us know how very important it is to our Lord how we handle our money and the other things he’s blessed us with. After all, he is our master who has entrusted these things to us to manage, and he states that if we’re faithful with very little, he can trust us with much, and he can entrust to us true riches, which won’t rust, be stolen, or become moth-eaten, for they are the blessings of life forever in his presence.



Lord Jesus, we receive your challenge to be faithful even in the small things in this life and in the use of the resources you’ve blessed us with. Speak to our hearts and guide us in how we can share our abundance to your glory. In your precious name we pray, Amen.

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1 Comment

May 02

Good morning, Kristin. This passage is worthy of a week long bible study!!! I appreciate your insighful commentary which made me read it a couple of times. Jesus was so good at teaching using parables which made His listeners really think and mull over His message. Great teaching model! I wish I would have used parables when raising my children. When Jesus said "people of the world are more shrewd in dealing with their own" than we are, it made me realize how much I need the indwelling insights of the Holy Spirit to see clearly when speaking or interacting with those "shrewd in their dealings".

The master in the story commends his manager as being shrewd. Our Master commeds…

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