God’s Hope for Your Heart from Luke 16

JESUS WANTS TRUE RICHES FOR YOU

“And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by means of unrighteous wealth, so that when it fails they may receive you into the eternal dwellings.  One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much.  If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches?”  (Luke 16:9-11)

Luke chapter 16 records two parables Jesus told about the true purpose and nature of wealth.  In one, a manager uses money in such a way that he receives commendation for his shrewdness.  In the other, a rich man uses money only for his own pleasure, and receives condemnation for his selfishness.

Sandwiched in the middle, Jesus tells us the main purpose of the blessings of the material world.  The point is to use them as tools to gain the far greater riches of the Kingdom.

The manager knew his time was short, so he got to work.  He made hard choices, had awkward conversations and put himself at great risk by what he did, and he was rewarded.  The rich man paid no attention to anything but his own pleasure.  He didn’t look outside his own gates to the needy and the hurting, and he, too, was rewarded in kind… by everlasting punishment.

The point isn’t that riches are bad.  The point is that earthly riches are not trophies to be hoarded but tools to be used for the greater good, gaining “the true riches” that Jesus talks about.

The point also isn’t that if we do enough good deeds we can earn our place in heaven, for that would contradict the rest of Scripture.  Rather, the point is that what you consistently do on the outside reveals who you really are on the inside.

It’s a question of the heart.

As you ponder your own financial situation and make choices about how to live your life, don’t let the lure of worldly wealth make you blind to the things that matter most.  Don’t let the trappings of temporal success cloud your vision and keep you from pursuing what’s really important.

God wants good things for you, not just here and now, but for eternity!  So, let Him free your heart from the bondage of self-indulgence and lead you to opportunities to invest in the Kingdom.  As you do, you’ll discover the hope found in this truth: Jesus wants true riches for you.

-Pastor Phillip


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