Luke 16:1-13 Reflection: The Parable of the Shrewd Steward

A reading from the gospel according to Luke 16:1-13

1 Jesus said to his disciples, “A rich man had a steward who was reported to him for squandering his property.
2 He summoned him and said, ‘What is this I hear about you? Prepare a full account of your stewardship, because you can no longer be my steward.’
3 The steward said to himself, ‘What shall I do, now that my master is taking the position of steward away from me? I am not strong enough to dig and I am ashamed to beg.
4 I know what I shall do so that, when I am removed from the stewardship,
they may welcome me into their homes.’
5 He called in his master’s debtors one by one. To the first he said, ‘How much do you owe my master?’
6 He replied, ‘One hundred measures of olive oil.’ He said to him, ‘Here is your promissory note. Sit down and quickly write one for fifty.’
7 Then to another the steward said, ‘And you, how much do you owe?’ He replied, ‘One hundred kors of wheat.’ The steward said to him, ‘Here is your promissory note; write one for eighty.’
8 And the master commended that dishonest steward for acting prudently. “For the children of this world are more prudent in dealing with their own generation than are the children of light.
9 I tell you, make friends for yourselves with dishonest wealth, so that when it fails, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.
10 The person who is trustworthy in very small matters is also trustworthy in great ones; and the person who is dishonest in very small matters is also dishonest in great ones.
11 If, therefore, you are not trustworthy with dishonest wealth, who will trust you with true wealth?
12 If you are not trustworthy with what belongs to another, who will give you what is yours?
13 No servant can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and mammon.”

Reflection: The Primacy of God, Stewardship, and Trust

Points to reflect on:
1. God alone is our Master, Lord, and king. He has no equal. Everything else should be secondary. Making it otherwise is idolatry and therefore a violation of the first commandment. Indeed, to prioritize making money over worshipping God is an insult to the true source of all wealth, God Himself.

2. All resources are properties of our Creator in heaven. Therefore we have no right to squander them. Instead, let us make full use of these resources for the benefits of ALL. The “ALL” is in capital letters to emphasize inclusiveness such as the present and future generations and not just the privileged one percent of the human triangle.

3. Each one has a gift and each one is responsible to use that gift for the greater glory of God. It doesn’t really matter if the gift is too small. Therefore, no one is too poor to despise himself as abandoned by God and therefore no responsibility or to be excused from being called steward. All of us are gifted with time. This is an important resource that many people take for granted. How well we use this resource is our responsibility.

4. St. Luke probably included this story in his gospel to show us that we, “the children of light”, has something to learn from the “children of this world”. Aside from acting with prudence in all tings, our Master in heaven is calling us to use wisdom to reduce the burden of others. The children of the Light are called upon to make the path easier for the children of this world to come to the Light.

Any comment?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.