LUKE 16- STEWARD OF THE UNJUST MAMMON- WHAT DID JESUS MEAN?

Dear Reader:It has been sometime since I have written anything “significant” for this blog; mostly due to the fact that I have been caring for my aged mother for the past five years with increasing intensity up until her passing this November 08.The last year of her life I had spent most of my waking hours with her in Hospitals and especially the last three months at her bedside in a nursing home here in Hawaii.The hours were long and emotionally draining,but I must say that the experience was one of the most rewarding times of my life as I had the privilege of getting to know my mother more as the remarkable person that she was instead of just as my “mother.” Being at her bedside when she went to meet Jesus was one of the most spiritual personal experiences of my life, but that is for a story at another time.Perhaps I can share that event in my next writing, Lord willing.
Today I want to share with you something that was imparted to me several years ago during a period of “searching the scriptures” during which I made a study of the Luke 16 Parable of the “Unjust Steward”. Although I have meditated many years on this parable, only today did I feel “the penny drop” as new understanding was revealed to me. Please forgive me if my interpretation is offensive or non-conforming to accepted mainstream Christianity; I do not intentionally mean it to be so, but it appears to me that the purpose of the whole parable was to challenge the “Religious Leaders” of the day, and in fact, they were so offended that they took action by killing Jesus! Religion seems to lead to death,and death is the enemy of God; How can that be?
Please allow me to explain: The Greek text uses the word “adikia” to refer to the “stuff” that the Steward was in charge of caring for. Asking a “native born” Greek-Speaking Scholar (my mother) “what is this all about?” I was astounded to find out that she was saying it was not he Steward who was “Unjust” but it was in fact, the Mammon or “goods” that were “unjust” or “unrighteous!”.This changes the meaning of the story completely, for if the “Masters’Goods” were unjust, then so was the “Master!”.
Looking at he beginning of the story we see another clue in the use of the Greek word “dieblethe” to say “It was reported to him that the steward was squandering the “Master’s” possessions (Luke 16:1).Instead of “reported” it should be more correctly translated “falsely accused”, derived from the word “diaballo”, from which we get the word diabolos or devil.”The devil’s accusations are always false.The unjust person in this parable is not the business manager (steward), but the rich employer who dismissed his employee on hearsay or false accusation”(see Spiros Zodiates Bible footnotes pp.1376-1377). Things are looking different now, are they not? What is Jesus getting at? (More in Part II)

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