Here in Luke chapter 15, Jesus tells 2 parables — stories — both dealing with money. Again, if you’re Catholic, compare the Pharisees with the Vatican and Catholic bishops, priests and their whole hierarchy. The resemblance is uncanny. It seems like the Roman Catholic Church leaders did exactly the opposite of what Jesus preached and modeled the church after what the Pharisees had back then. Pay attention to these 2 stories. Read them a few times if you have to. I also recommend listening to this lesson in the free Through The Word Bible app.
Parable of the Shrewd Manager
Jesus told this story to his disciples: “There was a certain rich man who had a manager handling his affairs. One day a report came that the manager was wasting his employer’s money. 2 So the employer called him in and said, ‘What’s this I hear about you? Get your report in order, because you are going to be fired.’
3 “The manager thought to himself, ‘Now what? My boss has fired me. I don’t have the strength to dig ditches, and I’m too proud to beg. 4 Ah, I know how to ensure that I’ll have plenty of friends who will give me a home when I am fired.’
5 “So he invited each person who owed money to his employer to come and discuss the situation. He asked the first one, ‘How much do you owe him?’ 6 The man replied, ‘I owe him 800 gallons of olive oil.’ So the manager told him, ‘Take the bill and quickly change it to 400 gallons.’
7 “‘And how much do you owe my employer?’ he asked the next man. ‘I owe him 1,000 bushels of wheat,’ was the reply. ‘Here,’ the manager said, ‘take the bill and change it to 800 bushels.’
8 “The rich man had to admire the dishonest rascal for being so shrewd. And it is true that the children of this world are more shrewd in dealing with the world around them than are the children of the light. 9 Here’s the lesson: Use your worldly resources to benefit others and make friends. Then, when your possessions are gone, they will welcome you to an eternal home.
10 “If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities. 11 And if you are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of heaven? 12 And if you are not faithful with other people’s things, why should you be trusted with things of your own?
13 “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.”
14 The Pharisees, who dearly loved their money, heard all this and scoffed at him. 15 Then he said to them, “You like to appear righteous in public, but God knows your hearts. What this world honors is detestable in the sight of God.
16 “Until John the Baptist, the law of Moses and the messages of the prophets were your guides. But now the Good News of the Kingdom of God is preached, and everyone is eager to get in. 17 But that doesn’t mean that the law has lost its force. It is easier for heaven and earth to disappear than for the smallest point of God’s law to be overturned.
18 “For example, a man who divorces his wife and marries someone else commits adultery. And anyone who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.”
Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus
19 Jesus said, “There was a certain rich man who was splendidly clothed in purple and fine linen and who lived each day in luxury. 20 At his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus who was covered with sores. 21 As Lazarus lay there longing for scraps from the rich man’s table, the dogs would come and lick his open sores.
22 “Finally, the poor man died and was carried by the angels to sit beside Abraham at the heavenly banquet. The rich man also died and was buried, 23 and he went to the place of the dead. There, in torment, he saw Abraham in the far distance with Lazarus at his side.
24 “The rich man shouted, ‘Father Abraham, have some pity! Send Lazarus over here to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue. I am in anguish in these flames.’
25 “But Abraham said to him, ‘Son, remember that during your lifetime you had everything you wanted, and Lazarus had nothing. So now he is here being comforted, and you are in anguish. 26 And besides, there is a great chasm separating us. No one can cross over to you from here, and no one can cross over to us from there.’
27 “Then the rich man said, ‘Please, Father Abraham, at least send him to my father’s home. 28 For I have five brothers, and I want him to warn them so they don’t end up in this place of torment.’
29 “But Abraham said, ‘Moses and the prophets have warned them. Your brothers can read what they wrote.’
30 “The rich man replied, ‘No, Father Abraham! But if someone is sent to them from the dead, then they will repent of their sins and turn to God.’
31 “But Abraham said, ‘If they won’t listen to Moses and the prophets, they won’t be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’”Luke 16 NLT
The main message here is that money can’t buy you a place in heaven — no matter how hard you try. Money, in itself is not evil. It’s the love of money, that takes over a person’s life, that is deadly.
In the first story, the manager, though never dishonest, was wise when it came to financial matters. So much so, that the rich man admired his shrewdness. Shrewd is being astute or sharp in practical matters — wise. No one can serve God and money at the same time. Sure, you can earn money — you have to. However, don’t make it the center of your life. That should be God.
The Catholic Church, through their charities does a lot of good work in the world. Nevertheless, they are also known for the riches of the Vatican. They are just kept in a vault or in galleries. Why? What good is it doing?
In the second story we have a rich man and a poor man. They both die. The rich man ends up in hell and the poor man goes up to “Abraham’s Bosom”. What’s that? No, it’s not purgatory! Purgatory doesn’t exist! When Jesus died and rose, He was the first to go to heaven. Paul explains this in 1 Corinthians 15 and you can study that by clicking here.
I imagine there are a lot of “Catholics” and “Progressives” in hell, screaming and yelling… “Why am I here!? I did everything I was told to do! I was a good person and went to church every Sunday. I prayed the prayers I was told to pray. I went to confession. I was baptized as a baby! I went to Sunday School!”
The sad thing is that hell is the furthest away you can ever be from God. He won’t answer you. It’s too late after you die.
You Have a Choice NOW!
If you’re not sure if you’re saved or not, if you truly want to be born again and have the assurance of salvation, receive the Holy Spirit, and get a 1-way, non-stop ticket to Heaven after you die, or that you won’t be left behind at the Rapture, this is what you have to do…