chapter 16

Luk 16:1 And he said also unto his disciples, There was a certain rich man, which had a steward; and the same was accused unto him that he had wasted his goods.
Luk 16:2 And he called him, and said unto him, How is it that I hear this of thee? give an account of thy stewardship; for thou mayest be no longer steward.

Sooner or later our past catches up with us if we don't change our ways and make things right with God and where possible make restitution with whom we defrauded.

Luk 16:3 Then the steward said within himself, What shall I do? for my lord taketh away from me the stewardship: I cannot dig; to beg I am ashamed.
Luk 16:4 I am resolved what to do, that, when I am put out of the stewardship, they may receive me into their houses.

The steward, fearing being cast out, made friends with the other stewards by paying off half their debts.

Luk 16:5 So he called every one of his lord's debtors unto him, and said unto the first, How much owest thou unto my lord?
Luk 16:6 And he said, An hundred measures of oil. And he said unto him, Take thy bill, and sit down quickly, and write fifty.
Luk 16:7 Then said he to another, And how much owest thou? And he said, An hundred measures of wheat. And he said unto him, Take thy bill, and write fourscore.
Luk 16:8 And the lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely: for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light.

The owner commended the wisdom of this steward.

Luk 16:9 And I say unto you, Make to yourselves friends of the mammon of unrighteousness; that, when ye fail, they may receive you into everlasting habitations.
Luk 16:10 He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.

This is not teaching us to love the world and be like the world but to be honest in worldly business just as much as we are in service for the Lord. We are never to love the unrighteous mammon of this world as the verses states below. If we want to be trusted with better things, we have to be faithful in the little things we have.

For instance, if you work for a company as a mail room clerk, didn't show up on time, didn't do the job faithfully, I doubt you would ever get a promotion to a higher position. Whatever task we have whether great or small should be done the best we can with thankfulness before we can expect anything better.

Luk 16:11 If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches?
Luk 16:12 And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man's, who shall give you that which is your own?
Luk 16:13 No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

With our full trust in the Lord, we really don't have to be overly concerned about the riches in this life for He promises to care for those who trust Him. Whatever we already have should be received with thanksgiving and whatever jobs we have should be done as we would do it for the Lord in all faithfulness.

I hate to say this and I might make a lot of people mad but do you realize that murmuring and complaining about wages, health care and benefits and going on strike to get more is not a good Christian way to live. Try praying instead. If you need a higher salary, don't stir up a multitude against your boss, try asking God to move his heart. God sees your need and knows whether you need more or not. Being thankful for what we already have is much better than complaining because we don't have as much as the family down the street.

I find myself complaining about high taxes, especially property tax and I agree that it is not a fair tax but still I think I'll take my own advice and start praying about this instead.

Luk 16:14 And the Pharisees also, who were covetous, heard all these things: and they derided him.
Luk 16:15 And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God.

Although we strive as Christians to make sure we are of good reputation so that we do not bring reproach upon the name of Christ, still in the eyes of the Lord those highly esteemed in our eyes just may not be that way in the eyes of God. That is why Jesus tells us to judge righteous judgments, not with our own sight or according to the way man sees things. God can see in the depth of the heart.

Luk 16:16 The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.
Luk 16:17 And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail.

The word, the prophecies and all the law will be fulfilled without fail. No matter what mankind does, it will not change God's plans. This should be our comfort. Jesus Christ will return at the appointed time and nothing anyone can do will change that.

Luk 16:18 Whosoever putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and whosoever marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery.

I'm sorry if I'm offensive but so many of us are ignoring this verse about adultery. Some have stated that this is just good advice from the Lord and it is not a commandment. Read the verse again. It is not a suggestion but a fact that whoever divorces and marries another or marries someone that was divorced. Commits adultery. How can we explain it any other way? I know we do it anyway but how do we get away with ignoring this passage of scripture to accommodate fellow brothers and sisters in the Lord? I will admit here that I personally have never been divorced and remarried so it is easier for me to believe this just the way Jesus spoke it because it doesn't apply to me personally and I don't have to change the word of God to fit my lifestyle.

However I do have a daughter that was divorced and remarried. I also have a son that is divorced but not remarried at this time. So this verse does trouble me on their behalf at times but I take comfort in the fact that through the blood of Jesus the past can be forgiven of. Jesus' words in Matthew 19:9 would apply on behalf of my son and he could remarry. However, I would feel safer if we would all just listen to Jesus to start with and not have to struggle over whether or not divorce and remarriage is right or wrong.  I listened to a bible teacher the other day who advised that if your married, stay married.  How can we expect to make any marriage work if we can't make the first marriage work?  

Matt 19:9 And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.

I can't find at least in the words of Jesus where any other reason is probable cause to divorce and remarry except fornication. MY understanding of fornication includes all sex perversion including adultery.

This tells me that God takes marriage very seriously and when one's wife or husband is unfaithful in the area of sexual relationship, they break the marriage vows and the opposite spouse would be free to marry again. God seems to take sexual relationships very seriously. One husband, one wife and no cheating.

So much disease and heartache is caused by these kinds of sin. Children are never the same after a parent's divorce. We forget the innocent victims of our desires.

I know right now of one co-worker who works with one of my daughters.  This person is in the process of a divorce from her husband. As far as I know, he is not perfect but a descent fellow. They have two small children. She met a guy from another state while playing an online play station game. She thinks her life is going to be exciting and fun with this new guy. No one can tell her that she is making the biggest mistake of her life and the lives of her children. She has never met him in person but is so infatuated with this person that she is breaking up a home and planning on leaving soon.

Satan kills, steals and destroys. This lady is in for one big letdown and even her life could be in danger. The grass always looks greener until you get to the other side and it is usually so much worse that what we already have.

This whole chapter can be summed up in being thankful and taking care of what you already have. Then perhaps God will allow you to have more. Love your own spouse, without assuming someone else would be better. If they don't love you back, take it to God. If you show God that you fear His commandments and want to do what is right, He will help. In doing this though we have to let the light of the word of God correct faults and errors in our own life. If we think that we are never in the wrong and it is always the other person's fault then we can't be helped.

Luk 16:19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
Luk 16:20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
Luk 16:21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
Luk 16:22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
Luk 16:23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
Luk 16:24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
Luk 16:25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
Luk 16:26 And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
Luk 16:27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:
Luk 16:28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
Luk 16:29 Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.
Luk 16:30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
Luk 16:31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

Now is the time to act. Don't wait until death is near. Feed the hungry, love your own families, be faithful and thankful. Now. Seek the Lord while He may be found and call upon Him now. The above parable shows us that there is a place of comfort and a place of torment. Jesus came that we can enter the place of comfort, although I believe since His resurrection Abraham's bosom has been moved to Heaven. This is a parable but with a real possible situation. Jesus came that we be saved from sin and not be sent to the place of torment. Let us reflect His love by doing good to our fellowmen first by sharing the message of salvation, by helping those that are hurting and by loving our own spouses and children and by being thankful and faithful in what we already have.