In today’s Gospel, Jesus tells his disciples a parable that seems very strange. A steward misuses his employer’s money for his own benefit. Is Jesus really teaching us to follow his example?
The story shows us that the dishonest steward was clever and streetwise. When he was about to lose his job, he knew what he needed to do to protect his position. Jesus is pointing out to his disciples that they might be ‘wise’ about the things of the world, but foolish about the things that really matter. We seek wealth, power or a secure position in the world – things that will pass away – but we are not so interested in storing up treasure in heaven that will last forever. Worse than that, the love of money tempts us to act dishonestly and to take advantage of others, as the prophet Amos tells us in the First Reading.
This week, the nation has been mourning the death of Queen Elizabeth II. At her coronation, the late Queen, who had a strong Christian faith, promised to be a faithful servant to the people of this country, and a good steward of all that was entrusted to her. King Charles III has promised to serve in the same way, seeking the good of the whole nation. All those who hold high positions in the world are called to be faithful servants and good stewards.
Jesus teaches us that we cannot be the servant of two masters. He calls us to give our whole heart to him.