Does Jesus want us to become grifters?

How do people square this parable with Jesus' overall concern for the poor, and indeed with the verse at the end about God and mammon? I have seen it cited with regards to Jerry Falwell Jr.'s claim that Jesus wants him to look out for his own interests before anything else. Does it support that? On a first read it sure looks like it. This is KJV so it should be public domain.
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. 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.

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. I am resolved what to do, that, when I am put out of the stewardship, they may receive me into their houses.

So he called every one of his lord's debtors unto him, and said unto the first, How much owest thou unto my lord? And he said, An hundred measures of oil. And he said unto him, Take thy bill, and sit down quickly, and write fifty. 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.

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. 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. 0 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.

If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man's, who shall give you that which is your own? 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. (Luke 16:1–13)

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Comments

  • This is in the Anglican lectionary for next Sunday. It is quite a peculiar parable but the point seems to be that the dishonest manager comes to realise that there is something more important in life than amassing wealth and that is in building good relationships with other people.

    Luke has a theme about money and its correct use by Christian believers which runs throughout his gospel and the Book of Acts. He sees a generous attitude towards giving money as being a sign of right mindedness and discipleship.

    So in his gospel narrative Jesus is born in a stable. The angels announce the good news first to the shepherds, but there is no mention of the magi. At the Presentation in the Temple Mary and Joseph make the sacrifice of two birds which is prescribed for the poor in the Law.

    Jesus sends out the 70 disciples without a purse or bag or sandals. The Parable of the Good Samaritan features the Samaritan arranging care for the injured traveller at his own expense. Jesus praises the poor widow for giving a mite to the Temple because she gave all that she had to live on. Zaccheus the reformed tax collector gives half his possessions to the poor.

    In the Book of Acts the way that believers show that they are in the right relationship with the Holy Spirit is shown by their use or abuse of money. At the beginning of Acts Peter says, `Silver and gold have I none.' And at the end of Acts we see Paul living in Rome at his own expense.

    The believers at the early church in Jerusalem had everything in common. They sold their possessions and gave to anyone as they had need (Acts 2: 44-45). Cornelius was chosen by God as the first Gentile convert because he was devout and gave generously to those in need (Acts 10: 1-4).

    But Luke takes a dim view of believers who prioritise money over relationships. Ananias and Sapphira sold a property and kept back part of the money. They acted with selfishness and hypocrisy while seeking false acclaim in the church. Simon Magus offered money to the apostles in return for the power of laying hands upon others to receive the Holy Spirit. Peter tells him that he has no share in this ministry because he thought he could buy the gift of God with money. The whole of Acts outlines a message about the giving of money as the sign of true Christian identity.

    You cannot serve both God and money.
  • Assorted:

    --That's one of the passages where I wonder if some inter-personal thing was going on with the disciples, Jesus was referring to it, and we don't have the background info. E.g., were they arguing over money? Was one of them shopping and relating to merchants, and looked down on by the others? In the account of Judas' death, there's a comment suggesting that he kept the group's money, and stole/misused it. (Which sounds to me like the sort of additional snarky comment you pile onto either a) someone you believe has done something awful, you want to make them sound even worse, and you don't care about facts; or b) someone you have very mixed feelings about who died, and you're covering that up.)

    --I skimmed the article about Falwell Jr. I'm not sure even his dad would have said something like that. I searched on "falwell jr", and found references to an alleged sex scandal, reported over the summer, supposedly involving F Jr., his wife, and a pool boy. Between that and the "embarrassing e-mails" he's filing lawsuits about, I think he's in fighting mode (and, as he says, enjoying it)--and full "l’état, c’est moi" ("I am the State") mode. Not unlike T, who he admires.
  • I'm pretty sure that Jesus' words here:
    10 “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. 11 If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches?

    .... totally rule out the possibility that he was recommending us to imitate the dishonesty of the shrewd manager. He seems to be recomending the manager as an example of one quality and one quality only: his shrewdness. The man is an absolute waste of space in every way but one--but that one quality is something Jesus would like to see in every "son of light," alongside the honesty that you would also normally expect.

    Basically the manager is the kind of guy who, when faced with a problem, doesn't waste his time in denial, whining, shuffling, or half-assed problem-solving--unlike many a church committee I could name. Instead he sees the problem ("I'm about to be fired"), grasps the knock-on effects ("I'm going to have to find a way to support myself"), considers the alternatives (digging ditches, begging) and comes up with a creative if unorthodox solution ("I'm going to defraud my master in such a way that he can't undo it, the local villagers will love me, and I'll be able to sofa-surf for ages free of cost"). He then immediately implements his Cunning Plan and presumably lives happily ever after (well, at least until he runs out of grateful people to sponge off of).

    Grifter he may be, but he's a damned talented PR master (because you just know the debtors were singing the master's praises for his generosity, having no idea that the manager had had the chutzpah to do the debt reduction all on his own--and it's damned hard to take back all that generosity after the fact, no matter what the actual facts of the case are--and guaranteed to cause a huge PR disaster). The shrewd manager is clear-eyed, decisive, and creative. Jesus would very much like to see us the same. Unfortunately, that's not usually what he gets in his church:
    8 The master commended the dishonest manager for his shrewdness. For the sons of this world are more shrewd in dealing with their own generation than the sons of light.

    I suspect every one of us could name some situation where our local congregation, charity, or national church body has completely bollixed up some program, effort or problem-solving--and why? because we ("sons of light") are idiots enough to believe that "a good heart" and loving Jesus is sufficient qualification to carry off, say, the church bookkeeping, or a complicated computer installation. It's not. We need brains, and we need a willingness to use them, and we need to get rid of the belief that cleverness is somehow unholy. If the shrewd manager can do it for his own benefit, how much more should we be clever in the service of the Lord?

    Now this last bit,
    9 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.

    I take to be a bit of humor--sarcasm, if you will--because nobody is going to sofa-surf his way into heaven. But it does force you to think about what kinds of "friend-making" activities we could do with "unrighteous wealth," and Who exactly the Friend is that we need to be, er, targeting.


  • EutychusEutychus Admin
    edited September 2019
    Came here to post pretty much what @Lamb Chopped said, and do so less eloquently.
  • Lamb ChoppedLamb Chopped Shipmate
    edited September 2019
    Ah! Great minds, and all that (did you think I could resist the pun?)...
  • I'm wondering (and will say) if Jesus is also saying that we're all mixed up in this Mammon thing, in one way or another and whether we're rich or poor. It's hard to evade its corrupting tentacles but somehow we need to proclaim a different way in which (to use ++Justin's phrase) Mammon is "dethroned".
  • CrœsosCrœsos Shipmate
    edited September 2019
    Golden Key wrote: »
    --I skimmed the article about Falwell Jr. I'm not sure even his dad would have said something like that. I searched on "falwell jr", and found references to an alleged sex scandal, reported over the summer, supposedly involving F Jr., his wife, and a pool boy. Between that and the "embarrassing e-mails" he's filing lawsuits about, I think he's in fighting mode (and, as he says, enjoying it)--and full "l’état, c’est moi" ("I am the State") mode.

    When discussing Falwell Jr. it's important to remember that the alleged sex-scandal with the muscular pool boy and the hush-money-like sweetheart real estate deal is a different scandal than the alleged sex scandal with the personal trainer and the payoff-like sweetheart real estate deal. I know it can be confusing, but apparently Falwell Jr. knows what he likes and has some very specific (alleged) needs.
  • LeafLeaf Shipmate
    Instead [the manager] sees the problem ("I'm about to be fired"), grasps the knock-on effects ("I'm going to have to find a way to support myself"), considers the alternatives (digging ditches, begging) and comes up with a creative if unorthodox solution ("I'm going to defraud my master in such a way that he can't undo it, the local villagers will love me, and I'll be able to sofa-surf for ages free of cost").

    There is no evidence that the manager had actually committed fraud in the first place! In verse 1 it notes that "charges were brought to [the rich man] that this man was squandering his property". Obviously the rich man believed the validity of the charges, because he fired the manager, but the charges weren't necessarily true.

    Neither was the "unorthodox solution" necessarily an act of defrauding the rich man. It may have been a clever way of dealing with the rich man's previous illegal activity of charging interest. In Barbara Rossing's commentary on this text workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=2982 she notes New Testament scholarship on hidden interest rates. Charging interest was of course against the Torah, but of course the rich tried to find loopholes in the Law. If the illegal markup on olive oil was 50 percent and the illegal markup on wheat was 20 percent, the steward was doing nothing more than "correcting" the debt according to religious law.

    This is why the rich man would not have been take him to court for his actions, as he would be trying to sue for something that was illegal in the first place. Also why his only comment on the whole thing was, "Huh. Well played."

    I suppose this shows an extra layer of the manager's cleverness. He could have exposed his former boss or shamed him, but he chose to save face... and everybody knew it.

    It reminds me of the Mitch McDeer character in the book/movie The Firm. Even as everything comes crashing down around him, and he will certainly no longer be employed by The Firm at the end of it, he still manages to act cleverly and ethically with regard to his client - a Mafia boss.
    If the shrewd manager can do it for his own benefit, how much more should we be clever in the service of the Lord?

    Exactly. This seems to me part of Luke's rhetorical strategy of ad majorem: if we, being lesser, can do this, how much more can/ought we to do toward God?
  • Leaf wrote: »
    It reminds me of the Mitch McDeer character in the book/movie The Firm. Even as everything comes crashing down around him, and he will certainly no longer be employed by The Firm at the end of it, he still manages to act cleverly and ethically with regard to his client - a Mafia boss.
    I love this film - IIRC the ending, the one you recall, is much cleverer than in the book - and I love this comparison!

  • Eutychus wrote: »
    Leaf wrote: »
    It reminds me of the Mitch McDeer character in the book/movie The Firm. Even as everything comes crashing down around him, and he will certainly no longer be employed by The Firm at the end of it, he still manages to act cleverly and ethically with regard to his client - a Mafia boss.
    I love this film - IIRC the ending, the one you recall, is much cleverer than in the book - and I love this comparison!
    [tangent]

    I hated the ending of the movie. I remember leaving the movie theater fuming and rolling my eyes that they had changed the book's ending, which I thought was much better. The ending really ruined the movie for me.

    Can't say whether being a lawyer had anything to do with my take on it.

    [/tangent]
  • LeafLeaf Shipmate
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    I hated the ending of the movie.

    Fair enough. Like the parable, perhaps the analogy only sorta-kinda works.

    I wonder about the applicability of the parable to a largely poor audience. How much would they rejoice that someone who bought fifty jugs of olive oil had his bill changed to reflect the fair price? Same with someone who had purchased eighty containers of wheat? "And then, children, Elon Musk was able to claim this tax credit on a technicality, which resulted in greater than expected profits for the shareholders." Perhaps not exactly riveting or relevant.

    I see a few sources of confusion for us. One is that usually the master in a parable is a stand-in for God, which seems not to be the case here. Another is that we stop reading after "his master commended the dishonest [manager because he had acted shrewdly]" and so it seems that dishonesty rather than shrewdness is being praised.
  • We had this reading (from Luke 16) last Sunday. The lay preacher of the day commented that he had looked at several commentaries on this, and the only thing they agreed on was that it is "a difficult passage".

    He then suggested an interpretation a bit different from any of those canvassed above, namely that this is a parable about forgiveness, like the parable of the Prodigal Son which comes immediately before it in Luke's gospel. Although the word "forgive" does not appear as such in any of the translations I've read of this passage, it is common English usage to speak of "forgiving a debt". On this reading, the Master (God) is saying that forgiveness is a virtue - indeed a characteristically Christian virtue.

    Like me this preacher is semi-retired scientist, and thus in a sense a professional writer. In this vein, he also remarked that as a writer, Luke had just about organised all his material , but then found this story in this "miscellaneous" file , and wanted to fit it in somewhere, so - here it is!
  • In managing the lender's money, the steward would lend out the money with a little padding, or markup, the steward would keep for himself. Thus, a $100 loan would have a 50% markup with 50% going to the steward. What likely happened is the steward was starting to charge excessive markups and word got back to the lender or the markups became so oppressive the lender was not getting any return on his investment. Thus, when the owner calls the steward into account, the steward comes up with the idea to reduce or eliminate the markup. The lendees burdens are reduced, the lender gets his money and the steward's job is saved. Everyone comes a winner.

    A modern example:

    Several years ago when the American Real Estate Bubble burst largely due to subprime loans, people found their houses were valued at less than their mortgages--they were underwater. Consequently, many people were just turning their keys into the mortgage holders and walking away. The mortgage holders could not sell the properties and recoup their money. So the government came up with the Hope Act. It
    • Authorized the FHA to insure up to $300 billion of 30-year fixed-rate refinance loans up to 90% of appraised value for distressed borrowers.
    • Covered mortgage commitments made on or before January 1, 2008.
    • Required existing mortgage holders to accept the proceeds of the insured loan as payment in full for all pre-existing indebtedness.
    • Lender participation in this program was not required but voluntary.

    Along with other changes to the financial markets, things began to turn around in 2009.
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    It’s fine, but it’s not what the story says. There’s no hint that the steward gets to keep his job. It’s a nice exercise in making the story more palatable, but it depends on speculative assumptions not supported by the text.
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    BroJames wrote: »
    It’s fine, but it’s not what the story says. There’s no hint that the steward gets to keep his job. It’s a nice exercise in making the story more palatable, but it depends on speculative assumptions not supported by the text.

    This.

    The advice is not to look out for your own self interest, but to be shrewd. Everybody, both sons of the world and sons of light, can fall victim to carelessness about following job requirements, but the former are, more often than not, quick to think on their feet and are able to deal with the problems their laxity has landed them in. The advice, therefore, to the sons of light, who are more often, not as clever, is to be shrewd, a good word, unlike the pejorative, to be cunning.
  • rhubarbrhubarb Shipmate
    Oddly I had never come across the word 'grifter' before and had to turn to my dictionary. I think the expression commonly used where I live is con-man'
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    Thanks - I thought it meant a sponger.
  • AIUI, a grift is a specific kind of con. It's not quick and done. E.g. the grifter may get to know the mark, strike up a relationship, win their trust, then maybe maneuver the mark into giving them money, expensive jewelry, property, etc.
  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    I was thinking about this as well because I was listening to someone talking about the Sermon on the Mount and apparently suggesting that nobody should have any worries nor make any financial plans etc, because God would always meet their needs. I was also still thinking about the Holocaust, which makes quite a juxtaposition.

    I am sorry if this is too far from the parable under discussion but it strikes me that it is possible to create (or emphasise) a narrative from the gospels whereby one is encouraged to be a conman/grifter and where the carefree lifestyle it enables is seen to be a gift from God.
  • EnochEnoch Shipmate
    edited January 27
    rhubarb wrote: »
    Oddly I had never come across the word 'grifter' before and had to turn to my dictionary. I think the expression commonly used where I live is con-man'
    Likewise. It's not used round here as far as I'm aware.

    It's possibly unlikely to catch on as it sounds too like 'grafter' which means a person who works hard and sticks at something that's probably a bit monotonous, a compliment not an insult.

    I agree with @Tukai's,
    The lay preacher of the day commented that he had looked at several commentaries on this, and the only thing they agreed on was that it is "a difficult passage".
  • I believe it's a portmanteau of "drift" and "graft." The one being peripatetic, the other being a con artist.
  • EnochEnoch Shipmate
    Doesn't 'graft' in the US usually mean bribery rather than confidence trickery?
  • Blahblah wrote: »
    I was thinking about this as well because I was listening to someone talking about the Sermon on the Mount and apparently suggesting that nobody should have any worries nor make any financial plans etc, because God would always meet their needs. I was also still thinking about the Holocaust, which makes quite a juxtaposition.

    I am sorry if this is too far from the parable under discussion but it strikes me that it is possible to create (or emphasise) a narrative from the gospels whereby one is encouraged to be a conman/grifter and where the carefree lifestyle it enables is seen to be a gift from God.

    If you're clever and unscrupulous enough, it is possible to consruct a narrative supporting practically anything from any text.
  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    Blahblah wrote: »
    I was thinking about this as well because I was listening to someone talking about the Sermon on the Mount and apparently suggesting that nobody should have any worries nor make any financial plans etc, because God would always meet their needs. I was also still thinking about the Holocaust, which makes quite a juxtaposition.

    I am sorry if this is too far from the parable under discussion but it strikes me that it is possible to create (or emphasise) a narrative from the gospels whereby one is encouraged to be a conman/grifter and where the carefree lifestyle it enables is seen to be a gift from God.

    If you're clever and unscrupulous enough, it is possible to consruct a narrative supporting practically anything from any text.

    Yes, which is in essence why I see very little of value in it.

    That said, there are some narratives that are an easier sell than others.
  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    Enoch wrote: »
    Doesn't 'graft' in the US usually mean bribery rather than confidence trickery?

    Grift means trickery. Graft is not necessarily the same thing.
  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    Someone I used to read, but I have forgotten who it was now, used to have a whole spiel about parables that used "bad" examples to make a point. According to whoeveritwas, the point was not about offering examples of behaviour to copy but to get across a surprising point in an unusual and memorable way.
  • EnochEnoch Shipmate
    Blahblah wrote: »
    Enoch wrote: »
    Doesn't 'graft' in the US usually mean bribery rather than confidence trickery?

    Grift means trickery. Graft is not necessarily the same thing.
    I was commenting on @mousethief's conjecture.
  • Enoch wrote: »
    Blahblah wrote: »
    Enoch wrote: »
    Doesn't 'graft' in the US usually mean bribery rather than confidence trickery?

    Grift means trickery. Graft is not necessarily the same thing.
    I was commenting on @mousethief's conjecture.

    I'm not sure the people who coined it were as etymologically astute as those on this thread.
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    edited February 6
    It's often taught that out of the various elements in a parable, only a single main one is applicable. "Don't try to make it walk on all fours", is the advice. Not so, say scholars today (see Ken Bailey's interpretation of the parable of the Prodigal. So, not surprisingly, the elements of this parable correspond to several parts of a situation in most Christian's lives, an a real crisis is one.

    That's because we leave the interpretation of the text to a few experts, while we live our lives normally. That's what they are paid for right? The architect is paid, so let him do the design, as agreed, money for effort. The wise course is, in the case of agreements, whether you are signing up for a new sim card or standing as a guarantor for another person's loan, is how serious the outcome will be if things go pear shaped. This is where due diligence, doing your homework, is required.

    The crisis in the Christian example is finding out that becoming a believer is not the end but the means to an end and we did not understand that and are left on the backfoot. Ignorance is no defence, and the piper has to be paid.

    Comments?

    We can explore what the pink slip element means next.
  • Um, we had a would-be lecturer onboard before, and it didn't go so well for him. If you think you have something to say, say it. Then we can decide if we want to answer you.
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    Um, we had a would-be lecturer onboard before, and it didn't go so well for him. If you think you have something to say, say it. Then we can decide if we want to answer you.

    Fair enough. It seems that, partly because of Tom Wright's writings, works are going to be needed after all. So we find ourselves non compliant, but also unable to comply, because of responsibilities we took on before we knew we already were obligated to God. We were supposed to give up everything to become disciples. Now our mortgages have come in the way.

    Is this a cogent and comprehensive interpretation of the metaphor of the situation of the manager, occurring because he left the interpretation of the employment contract/covenant to someone else?
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    Since a Jesus specifically commends the shrewdness of the manager, it’s probably fair enough to see shrewdness as the main point. In context, the master’s calling in the accounts stands as an analogue for the judgement.

    The manager didn’t leave the interpretation of the contract to someone else, he knew perfectly well what it meant. That’s why he knew he was in trouble as soon as the master wanted to look at the books.

    Not all of Jesus’ disciples, even in first century Palestine, literally gave up everything they had and literally followed him. There is compelling evidence for there and for the wider ancient world that there were stable communities of Christians whose call to follow Jesus was lived out in the context of a stable, settled existence.
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    edited February 6
    BroJames wrote: »
    Since a Jesus specifically commends the shrewdness of the manager, it’s probably fair enough to see shrewdness as the main point. In context, the master’s calling in the accounts stands as an analogue for the judgement.

    The manager didn’t leave the interpretation of the contract to someone else, he knew perfectly well what it meant. That’s why he knew he was in trouble as soon as the master wanted to look at the books.

    Not all of Jesus’ disciples, even in first century Palestine, literally gave up everything they had and literally followed him. There is compelling evidence for there and for the wider ancient world that there were stable communities of Christians whose call to follow Jesus was lived out in the context of a stable, settled existence.

    The material is dense, and unpacking took me a couple of decades. Now I'm married and have responsibilities which would be a bad testimony if abandoned. It was exactly this common situation that Jesus was addressing: "Be smart, use the technicalities". On one hand we were asked to give everything up, on the other hand we could palaver, ask for terms of peace. Another technicality: the Syro-phoenician woman reminded Jesus about the dog that got fed crumbs and got healed (of leprosy...is God only for the Jew, and not for the Gentile too?). In a hot thread on another forum, we concluded "eternal dwellings" were the "Rests" of disciples who had entered them. "Rests" are operationalised states. Once you entered them, you became "Blessings to the world', what Adam was mandated to be, and which was stalled, and what God promised Abraham to restart.

    Basically, Jesus was offering a second chance to believers, advising them to ride into the Kingdom on the coat tails of those who completed what baptism started. Hebrews 4.
  • This makes my brain hurt.
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    I think there’s a fundamental issue in the turn this discussion has now taken which isn’t really emerging from a specific discussion of this passage.
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    This makes my brain hurt.

    Again.

    Does Jesus want us to become grifters?

    The manager was shrewd and used a dishonest swindle to ensure his survival after losing his job. We are to be shrewd if we squander away the faith built up in us, faith required to obey God’s voice when He calls, by devoting whatever we gained serving selfish interest, mammon, to supporting those who are serving God. In other words, we are to be wise and use honest means to recover, not wise and use dishonest methods, grifting, swindling.

    How is faith built up?


    God prods all men wherever they are.

    Men wake up and realize they are sojourners: this isn't the plan for humanity.

    God is not ashamed to be the leader of these thoughtful people and has promised a new humanity for them, actually the original humanity promised to Adam: in its operationalised state, humanity becomes blessings to the world.

    Those who believe that milk and honey flow in this new “Land” leave the “Old Egypt”.

    God baptises, gives them the presence of the Holy Spirit and demonstrates the methodology to enter Rest: be strong, believe God will pull you through. The Spirit shows how calamity is avoided by creating crisis and then rescuing. To give them “faith”, courage when they hear God’s voice to obey.

    Some believers misunderstand the fire that has descended on them: they think it makes them like God, able to resurrect themselves, when they pick up a cross. They flex their muscles and go out without God.

    Righteous believers understand differently: the presence of the Holy Spirit is not to be used in gratuitous displays of power, like jumping off temple roofs, testing God, givin’ Him grief.

    Believers hear God’s voice to move forward and either pass or fail, depending on how they have nurtured their faith, invested their talent, faith building experience.

    How are faith building experiences received?

    By believing in Jesus, agreeing that serving mammon is futile, that serving Jesus leads to returns that don’t perish, that Jesus is the Real Rest, Promised Land, flowing with milk and honey.

    KJV Acts 19:4Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus. 5When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.


    KJV 1 Corinthians 14:4He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church.


  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    Side issue: why exactly are you quoting from the KJV?
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    This seems a long way from a discussion of the parable of the dishonest steward.
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    edited February 7
    Blahblah wrote: »
    Side issue: why exactly are you quoting from the KJV?

    Mousethief mentioned that the KJV is public domain. I though it was to pre empt any objection to use of other versions. It's been some time since I posted, so I just followed the herd. I don't want to be invited to Hell again, like I was by Evensong!
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    BroJames wrote: »
    This seems a long way from a discussion of the parable of the dishonest steward.

    I thought I tied squandering of the owner's assets with the wasting of the faith/talents given through the Holy Spirit upon baptism.
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    But the parable isn’t about squandering the owner’s assets. The steward has dishonestly enriched himself at the owner’s expense. When he realises he is about to be found out, he dishonestly forgives debts due to the owner in order to befriend the debtors in the hope that they’ll look after him when he loses his position.

    The only point that Jesus makes in the parable is to commend the shrewdness if the steward.

    All the stuff about
    the wasting of the faith/talents given through the Holy Spirit upon baptism
    might be interesting, but it doesn’t come from the parable.

    (Incidentally the KJV isn’t out of copyright in the UK - links to online Bibles are given in the Kerygmania forum, and you can use them to link to longer texts you want to quote. As the Kerygmania Guidelines indicate, if you’re just quoting a verse or two , that isn’t a problem.)
  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    So, to be clear, you think that the point of the parable is not to be a "waste of talents" even though the steward in the story is commended by the lord. That doesn't make much sense if that is the point.

    I am not sure why but the KJV passage posted initially seems to me to be comprehensible whereas your quote appears to me to sound like someone is speaking with a lisp.
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    BroJames wrote: »
    But the parable isn’t about squandering the owner’s assets.

    The word in the text is “wasted”:
    KJV Luke 16:1And 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.

    The understanding by Leaf is “squander”:
    There is no evidence that the manager had actually committed fraud in the first place! In verse 1 it notes that "charges were brought to [the rich man] that this man was squandering his property".
    BroJames wrote: »
    The steward has dishonestly enriched himself at the owner’s expense. When he realises he is about to be found out, he dishonestly forgives debts due to the owner in order to befriend the debtors in the hope that they’ll look after him when he loses his position.

    Not really. “squandered” is not “enriched himself”.
    BroJames wrote: »
    The only point that Jesus makes in the parable is to commend the shrewdness if the steward.

    All the stuff about the wasting of the faith/talents given through the Holy Spirit upon baptism
    might be interesting, but it doesn’t come from the parable.

    It needed to be mentioned, to highlight the fault Jesus anticipated believers would commit: squandering, which corresponds to the wasting of the faith building revelations believers get, upon being baptised into drinking from the Rock, getting access to spiritual food and drink, distribution of talents/resources.
    BroJames wrote: »
    (Incidentally the KJV isn’t out of copyright in the UK - links to online Bibles are given in the Kerygmania forum, and you can use them to link to longer texts you want to quote. As the Kerygmania Guidelines indicate, if you’re just quoting a verse or two , that isn’t a problem.)

    Thanks, good to know.
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    edited February 7
    Blahblah wrote: »
    So, to be clear, you think that the point of the parable is not to be a "waste of talents" even though the steward in the story is commended by the lord. That doesn't make much sense if that is the point.

    I am not sure why but the KJV passage posted initially seems to me to be comprehensible whereas your quote appears to me to sound like someone is speaking with a lisp.

    No, the point of the story is that wasting talents is not a dead end. You can still make a comeback.

    I tried to make sure my quotes would not be a talking point. Apparently I failed.
  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    Oh right.

    You've wasted your talents; well done good and faithful servant..
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    edited February 7
    Blahblah wrote: »
    Oh right.

    You've wasted your talents; well done good and faithful servant..

    You should do a topical study on the "Law of Liberty".

  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    I've no idea what that means.

    There is literally a "parable of the talents". If a point is to be made about "making a comeback after failing to use talents" why wouldn't it say so there?
  • wordkeeperwordkeeper Shipmate Posts: 26
    edited February 7
    Blahblah wrote: »
    I've no idea what that means.
    If you're really interested, you could start a thread on the Law of Liberty. We can come to some very interesting conclusions there.
    Blahblah wrote: »
    There is literally a "parable of the talents". If a point is to be made about "making a comeback after failing to use talents" why wouldn't it say so there?

    Actually it does:

    KJV Matthew 25:27Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury.

    Same idea of riding into the Kingdom on the work of others.

  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    I don't know what the Law of Liberty is. Or what it has to do with this parable.

    The guy who didn't use his talents is thrown out into utter darkness, Matt 25:30
  • BlahblahBlahblah Suspended
    This thread is very confusing.
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