Handling Money Part 2
by John Lowe
(Laurens SC, USA)
NEXT, LET’S SEE IN VERSES 10-12 THAT WE ARE TO--USE MONEY FAITHFULLY (LUKE 16:10-12)
10 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.
11 If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches?
12 And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man’s, who shall give you that which is your own?
We are stewards of that which is material, that is, we can see it and touch it. We are responsible to God for how we use His goods. He says that the men of this world are wiser than the children of light in their stewardship. How many Christians today are smart in the use of the “mammon of unrighteousness”—money? Do they use it to gather spiritual wealth? God will hold you responsible for the misuse of the material wealth He gives you.
I am told that there are organizations being run for the benefit of just a hand full of people. In another organization, 90% of what is given to that program supports a tremendous overhead that keeps men driving Cadillac automobiles. That means you would have to give one hundred dollars to get ten dollars to the poor people they are telling you about. There is something wrong with the way Christians give their money.
This would not happen if Christians were as smart as the men of the world.
In this parable, the Lord is saying, “Do you think God is going to trust you with heavenly riches if you are not using properly what He has given you on earth?” Money is a spiritual matter. You are responsible not only for giving it, but for investing it where it will yield the highest dividends in people reached for Christ. What is stressed here in these verses, is that what we fondly call our money; our house, our bonds, our stocks, our bank certificates, etc., is not really our own. It is a trust handed to us to use in such a manner that God can be pleased. The manager certainly had an eye for the future. There’s nothing wrong with that. But only for his earthly future. The believers’ rule is expressed beautifully by Paul in these words: “We fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is not seen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is not seen is everlasting.” (2 Cor. 4:18)
FINALLY, IN VERSE 13 WE ARE TOLD TO—USE MONEY BUT WORSHIP GOD (LUKE 16:13)
13 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.
You cannot serve God and money. This does not mean a man cannot be wealthy and still serve God. But the love of money is the root of all evil. If a person desires wealth, then he ceases to please God. A man’s loyalties cannot be divided, and God demands that everything be subservient to Him.
Therefore, people must choose whom they will serve. A person can be loyal to either God or money, but not both. Only by serving and worshipping God can people be free from worshipping money. This final verse shows we are to worship only God. We are not to worship money, but we are to use it for God’s kingdom.
To sum it up, there are four things that could be learned about the proper place for money in our life:
1. We can waste money. Stewards should use wealth for their masters’ good and not for their own pleasure. God wants us to enjoy His gifts, but He also wants us to use them wisely.
2. We can serve God with money. The man had a rude awakening: he had to give an account of his stewardship. I hope he learned to be wise and to invest wealth in people and in the future. We do not “buy” friends, but we can make friends for the Lord by the wise use of money. Will people welcome you to heaven because your stewardship made it possible for them to hear the gospel and be saved?
3. We can try to serve God and money. The Pharisees tried it but it cannot be done. How can you serve righteousness and unrighteousness, what is greatest and what is least, what God honors and what He hates? The world measures people by how much they get, but God measures them by how much they give.
4. We can let money be our god.The rich man did not go to Hades because he was rich; he went there because riches were his god. Abraham was a wealthy man, and yet he was in paradise.
Money can help send people to heaven, or it can help send people to hell.