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Choose your master

November 19, 2022
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Daily Scripture

Luke 16:10-15

10 “Whoever is faithful with little is also faithful with much, and the one who is dishonest with little is also dishonest with much. 11 If you haven’t been faithful with worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? 12 If you haven’t been faithful with someone else’s property, who will give you your own? 13 No household servant can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be loyal to the one and have contempt for the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.”

14 The Pharisees, who were money-lovers, heard all this and sneered at Jesus. 15 He said to them, “You are the ones who justify yourselves before other people, but God knows your hearts. What is highly valued by people is deeply offensive to God.

NOTE: Tomorrow, November 20, we will invite all of those worshiping in person at any Resurrection location to turn in their financial commitment cards for 2023. If you will not be in worship in person, you can click here to fill out your commitment card.

Daily Reflection & Prayer

Israel in Jesus’ day (like most countries then, and still today) had a small “upper crust” of extremely rich people, and lots and lots who were very poor. Jesus’ message in today’s reading was clear, and it created controversy (verse 14). Jesus said it is impossible to serve God and wealth, which opposed the values of the religious leaders who were among the rich. We know that many of those religious leaders saw their wealth as a sign of that God was particularly pleased with them and sneered at Jesus’ challenging words. Jesus didn’t flinch, but replied, “What is highly valued by people is deeply offensive to God.”

  • Scholar N.T. Wright wrote of this passage, “Money is not a possession, it’s a trust: God entrusts property to people and expects it to be used to his glory and the welfare of his children, not for private glory or glamour.” * The Message paraphrased verse 14 to say the religious leaders “rolled their eyes, dismissing [Jesus] as hopelessly out of touch.” ** Does Jesus’ teaching about worldly wealth and true riches seem “out of touch” to you? Does it challenge you? Does it inspire you? Be sure to notice that Jesus didn’t say we “shouldn’t” serve both God and money, but that we “cannot” do that. Our hearts can only have one ultimate master. The Greek word translated “wealth” meant all types of material goods. When you face ethical choices or career decisions, what determines your course: God’s values, or the material and social payoffs you expect?
Prayer

Heavenly Master, your greatest blessing in my life is not my bank account, home or car. It is your eternal love for me. Help me to grow in my willingness to use all my other resources to bless others. Amen.

GPS Insights

Anna Herholz

Anna Herholz

Anna Herholz is a student in rezlife, and a Senior at Blue Valley West High School. She and her family have been members of Resurrection since moving to Overland Park in 2008. She plans to attend the University of Nebraska--Lincoln, and study Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience. She says, "My absolute dream job is to study Neurotheology!" because she is fascinated by how humans' brains work differently when it comes to religion.

As a high school student, I don’t believe that everything the World has to offer is bad. I don’t believe God frowns on how much we have advanced his creation. I believe that enjoying God’s creation and how it has evolved is a beautiful thing. Today’s title is “Choose Your Master,” so the question is who are you worshiping? Are you worshiping a celebrity? Wealth? Social media? Are you worshiping earthly desires, or heavenly desires? Who is YOUR master in life?

God is not challenging us just to get us to despise the world, because God does not despise the world. The world is His creation. In Titus 2:12-13, God is reminding and “teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.”

God is calling us to use our possessions to glorify him, and refrain from the earthly desires humans fall into. God is not calling us to live a life focused inward on ourselves and our belongings, but to live righteously in this present world, glorifying Him. He calls us to be Holy, for it was our Earthly desires that separated us from Him in the beginning. Are you worshiping earthly values or God’s values?

Writer’s note: I have loved growing up in Rezlife, and have met so many of my close friends through the church! My favorite rezlife tradition is the kickoff Paint War right before school starts every year. Happy holidays and may everything be well with your soul!

© 2024 Resurrection: A United Methodist Church. All Rights Reserved.
Scripture quotations are taken from The Common English Bible ©2011. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
References

* Wright, N. T., Luke for Everyone (New Testament for Everyone) (p. 196). SPCK. Kindle Edition.

** From Eugene H. Peterson, The Message. NavPress, 1993-2002.