Jesus said to his disciples, "There was once a rich man who had a servant who managed his property. The rich man was told that the manager was wasting his master's money,
so he called him in and said, "What is this I hear about you? Turn in a complete account of your handling of my property, because you cannot be my manager any longer.'
The servant said to himself, "My master is going to dismiss me from my job. What shall I do? I am not strong enough to dig ditches, and I am ashamed to beg.
Now I know what I will do! Then when my job is gone, I shall have friends who will welcome me in their homes.'
So he called in all the people who were in debt to his master. He asked the first one, "How much do you owe my master?'
"One hundred barrels of olive oil,' he answered. "Here is your account,' the manager told him; "sit down and write fifty.'
Then he asked another one, "And you - how much do you owe?' "A thousand bushels of wheat,' he answered. "Here is your account,' the manager told him; "write eight hundred.'
As a result the master of this dishonest manager praised him for doing such a shrewd thing; because the people of this world are much more shrewd in handling their affairs than the people who belong to the light."
And Jesus went on to say, "And so I tell you: make friends for yourselves with worldly wealth, so that when it gives out, you will be welcomed in the eternal home. 1
Whoever is faithful in small matters will be faithful in large ones; whoever is dishonest in small matters will be dishonest in large ones.
If, then, you have not been faithful in handling worldly wealth, how can you be trusted with true wealth?
And if you have not been faithful with what belongs to someone else, who will give you what belongs to you?
"No servant can be the slave of two masters; such a slave will hate one and love the other or will be loyal to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money." 2
When the Pharisees heard all this, they made fun of Jesus, because they loved money.
Jesus said to them, "You are the ones who make yourselves look right in other people's sight, but God knows your hearts. For the things that are considered of great value by people are worth nothing in God's sight.
"The Law of Moses and the writings of the prophets were in effect up to the time of John the Baptist; since then the Good News about the Kingdom of God is being told, and everyone forces their way in. 3
But it is easier for heaven and earth to disappear than for the smallest detail of the Law to be done away with. 4
"Any man who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery; and the man who marries a divorced woman commits adultery. 5
"There was once a rich man who dressed in the most expensive clothes and lived in great luxury every day.
There was also a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who used to be brought to the rich man's door,
hoping to eat the bits of food that fell from the rich man's table. Even the dogs would come and lick his sores.
The poor man died and was carried by the angels to sit beside Abraham at the feast in heaven. The rich man died and was buried,
and in Hades, where he was in great pain, he looked up and saw Abraham, far away, with Lazarus at his side. 6
So he called out, "Father Abraham! Take pity on me, and send Lazarus to dip his finger in some water and cool off my tongue, because I am in great pain in this fire!'
But Abraham said, "Remember, my son, that in your lifetime you were given all the good things, while Lazarus got all the bad things. But now he is enjoying himself here, while you are in pain.
Besides all that, there is a deep pit lying between us, so that those who want to cross over from here to you cannot do so, nor can anyone cross over to us from where you are.'
The rich man said, "Then I beg you, father Abraham, send Lazarus to my father's house,
where I have five brothers. Let him go and warn them so that they, at least, will not come to this place of pain.'
Abraham said, "Your brothers have Moses and the prophets to warn them; your brothers should listen to what they say.'
The rich man answered, "That is not enough, father Abraham! But if someone were to rise from death and go to them, then they would turn from their sins.'
But Abraham said, "If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone were to rise from death.' "