Welcome to our online Bible study on Luke!
Read: Luke 16:1-18
My husband loves the Discovery Channel’s show “Gold Rush.” We’ve watched it so often that I’ve begun to feel like the Hoffman’s are family to us.
Each time the theme of the show begins, all I can think of is the old saying, “Thar’s gold in them thar hills!” I had heard the phrase before but never really knew the backstory to it. So I did a little research.
The phrase was coined in the early 1830s in the Gold Rush in northern Georgia. The phrase reemerged in 1849 when gold was found in California. Coast to coast, the news ran, and thousands of people moved west.
The forty-niners became passionate about gold — digging deep mines, sifting whole river beds, and eroding large hillsides with hydraulic cannons. They were determined find gold. Unfortunately, there were only a few prospectors who were able to gather more than a sack of crumbled dreams.
Spiritually speaking, the passage we have before us today speaks of what is real treasure, and it points us to what really matters in life.
The Parable of the Unjust Steward (or Shrewd Manager) is an encouragement to use worldly wealth shrewdly for eternal purposes (Luke 16:9). Wealth, of course, is not always strictly financial. Our wealth is also in the talents and gifts we’ve been blessed with.
The parable of the shrewd manager can be puzzling at first, but if we look a little deeper, we can see ourselves in Jesus’ words.
For years I simply put on the ‘good Christian’ appearance. I attended church. I sent my kids to a Christian school. I even quoted Scripture on my social media. All those things gave me the look of being a passionate Christ follower. But in actuality, I was being lazy, like the manager in this parable.
One Sunday night I realized my life was in danger. I wasn’t facing a health crisis or anything, yet this urgent feeling of needing Jesus came over me.
As I turned my life over to Him, I realized how He has entrusted me a manager of His riches, and He expects me to use all the resources I have to lessen the burdens of others — for their sakes’ not our own. The unjust manager used his master’s wealth for personal gain, but we as Christians, should be as eager in sharing the Gospel as the worldly man is in rushing to attain gold and all that the world has to offer.
When we learn to use the riches we are given to serve others, then we’ll be entrusted with more. We’ll be given true wealth — like overflowing joy, genuine friendships, and unconditional love.
This is the kind of wealth that cannot be identified with dollar signs.