-Luke stresses the issue of wealth and riches in this chapter as Jesus continues to teach, this time to His disciples, but there were Pharisees present who loved money greatly.
-The stewardship of money is established first. Jesus stresses wise use of it under the Master’s authority and Kingdom building. The key statement here is “He who is faithful in a very little thing is also faithful in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much (Luke 16:10).” *Application* The true riches of the Kingdom of God are given to those who can use wealth to the glory of the Lord. No one can serve two masters; they will love one and hate the other being devoted to one and despising the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.
-Jesus accused the Pharisees of justifying themselves in the sight of men, and He related the Old Testament in stating that the Lord knows the heart of a person (1 Samuel 13:14; 16:7). Jesus maintains the Law and the Prophets by his statements here, but He teaches that those seeking to do things their own way are trying to force their way into the Kingdom of God.
-At this point another story is related by Jesus to His listeners with significant afterlife doctrine. The point of the teaching revolved around wealth and the comfort of this life with an eternity of torment compared to the comfort of God in eternity to those enduring pain and suffering in this earthly life. A couple of points need to be made here. First, Jesus teaches a literal place of paradise with an ongoing existence along with the saints of old. There is also a literal place of torment reserved for those who do not trust in the Lord and His salvation. Jesus’ point here is that the rich man rejected God’s goodness and salvation and was buried separated from the love of the Savior. The angels carry those who die in God’s grace to His Kingdom in Heaven, but for those separated from Him there is a great chasm that cannot be crossed. This is a place of agony and eternal suffering, where no one would ever desire to be. *Application* I’ve heard people say, “I want to go to hell cause that’s where all my friends and family will be.” This is skewed thinking and just doesn’t match up with the reality that we see here in this Scripture. The last thing this man would want is for others in his family, that he is close to, to be in this horrible environment. In fact he would do anything to keep them out of this place. Hell will not be a place of community and any type of socializing. Therefore, just because someone you may know or love has ended life without saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and is destined for hell is no reason for you not to receive salvation and redemption. In paradise, Christ will wipe away every tear and there will be no more morning (Revelation 21:4). Those in this place of torment would desire to see you in Heaven.
-Secondly, Jesus tells His listeners that everything needed for salvation is in the Word of God. It, Scripture, is sufficient to save the soul. Jesus is plainly speaking of the Old Testament here to these Pharisees and disciples. The New Testament had not even been written yet. *Application* Moses and the Prophets are enough for us to learn the mysteries of God and come to Him (Colossians 1:25-2:3). They speak of the Messiah Jesus who would come and die for the sins of mankind giving us forgiveness of sin and complete cleansing in the eyes of the Lord to the repentant ones with faith.
Verse to Memorize: Luke 16:10