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LUKE CHAPTER 16

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1&2 Now He was also saying to the disciples, "There was a rich man who had a manager, and this manager was reported to him as squandering his possessions. 2 "And he called him and said to him, 'What is this I hear about you? Give an accounting of your management, for you can no longer be manager.'

 

Lk 16,1-15

(21m) Sin >> Greed tries to satisfy man’s need for security >> The love of money

(163c) Works of the devil >> Being a slave to the devil (Addictions) >> Bondage >> Being slaves of men >> Being a slave to greed

(182k) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Deception >> Deceitfulness of riches

Lk 16,1-13

(20d) Sin >> Nature of sin >> Motives of unbelief -- These verses go with verses 19-21

(21i) Sin >> Premeditated sin >> Intending to abuse the grace of God

(36i) Gift of God >> Inheritance >> Our inheritance can be withheld 

(96m) Thy kingdom come >> Having a negative attitude about sin >> Having an attitude of greed

(160k) Works of the devil >> Essential characteristics >> Satan’s attitude determines our direction >> Temptation to walk in unbelief >> Tempted to pursue your addictions

(179i) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Wolves >> Unworthy servant >> Unworthy because of unfaithfulness

(183ea) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Spirit of Error (Anti-Christ / Anti-Semitism) >> Nursery for the spirit of error >> Selfish ambition >> Seeking to control the Church

(184g) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Abusing the grace of God >> Spending His grace on your pleasures >> Abusing your position – There is one word in common with this parable and the one before it (the Prodigal Son; Lk 15,11-32), the word "squander". Note that the only difference between these two parables is motive. The unrighteous steward was lazy and not particularly intelligent, but he was shrewd; he didn’t know how to do anything but lie, cheat and steal. He devised a win-win plan and paid a visit to all his Masters’ debtors and discovered how much they owed Him and undercut his Master, so that every cent he received from them was pure profit, telling them, 'Write out the check to me and I’ll make sure my Master gets it.' This way everybody was happy. The people were happy because He lowered their debt, and he was happy because he became rich by cutting his Master out of the deal. In His mind God never was part of the deal. The unrighteous steward was in rush mode before word got out that he had lost his job, knocking on people’s doors, they would have known he was up to no good. He skipped town and never saw his Master again, leaving with about seventy percent on the dollar of all that was owed, so he made a lot of cash and a lot of friends at the same time. The money represents sin. The unrighteous steward was a pastor preaching a diluted gospel to his parishioners, suggesting to them that they are not as sinful as they thought. That is, the unrighteous steward humanized the gospel, preaching easy believism, circumventing repentance, the fear of God and the believer’s judgment to the degree of cutting salvation out of the deal. It  made the people happy to hear they were acceptable to God without feeling beholden to Him, which initially caused the Church to numerically grow and led to more tithing and money in the unrighteous steward’s pocket.

(195b) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Idolatry >> Serving two masters >> You can only serve one at a time – There is a very sharp distinction between serving God and loving money: to pursue money beyond our needs is to serve an idol. Giving the appearance of righteousness and faith, they pretend to believe in God and suffice those around them to believe they are Christians when in fact their real God is money.

(197b) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Spiritual laziness >> Rebelling Against what God wants you to do >> Refusing to take on responsibility

(198g) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Ordained by man >> Having evil motives for seeking leadership positions >> In the ministry for their own personal gain – The previous chapter about the prodigal son squandering his father’s possessions was very similar to the unrighteous steward, yet there is one main difference between them: the prodigal son received only love and mercy for his mistakes, while the unrighteous steward received condemnation and the boot. Note also that the rich man was a Father to the prodigal son, while the rich man in this story is the boss. Both made the same mistake, squandering the rich man's money, but the consequences were drastically different. The main difference between them is motive: the prodigal son’s infraction was carnal and fleshly in nature, whereas the unrighteous steward's infraction was spiritual. He was working on a level of knowledge that was much higher than that of the prodigal son; hence he was working on a level of sin that was far greater. The rich man had a certain amount of trust in the unrighteous steward, so betrayal was involved, whereas the prodigal son asked for his share of the estate in advance, which was not an infraction of the agreement. The unrighteous steward was squandering the rich man’s money as a business, ruining people’s lives and deceiving them in the process. Jesus was telling these parables back to back to show the correlation between them and it says that the unrighteous steward found his place in hell, which is a vastly different outcome than the prodigal son. The unrighteous steward represents pastors who abuse their positions and abuse the people God entrusted to them, while the prodigal son represents His children who occasionally go astray.

(222b) Kingdom of God >> The elusive Kingdom of Heaven >> Do not give what is holy to dogs >> God does not entrust his treasures to dogs >> God retrieves his treasures when sheep revert to dogs

(225c) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Parables >> Parables about wealth >> Parables about a rich man -- These verses go with verses 19-31. The rich man is God, and the unrighteous steward was an embezzler of human souls, which is the only thing God considers valuable. Note that the unrighteous steward never answered the rich man, because he had no relationship with him, but immediately began conniving. God owns everything, so the unrighteous steward had ownership of nothing, he merely managed those who belong to him. God probably has billions of tons of gold somewhere on a planet thousands of galaxies away, yet it has no value, nothing does except the human heart, because it is the only thing He doesn’t own, until we give it to Jesus.

(249i) Priorities >> God’ s preeminence >> Wealth >> World’s perception of wealth >> The world's wealth erodes good values >> Being a slave to wealth – The unrighteous steward was caught stealing from his Master before pulling this stunt. The idea was to make everybody write a check in his name, cash them and run for the hills with the money. This is an accurate depiction of low-life preachers of the gospel, televangelists who have come and gone over the years, whose interests were only in exploiting the people. The unrighteous steward began to surmise some of his choices. Based on his skill-set given at birth, he had the gift of gab, the ability to talk people into anything and schmoozing them out of their money. Being fired and His means of income about to end, how would he get through life? He would not submit to the circumstances of his Master putting him into the streets in total defeat to become like those he once pilfered, picking up mundane jobs paying little to nothing. The unrighteous steward made a plan to put himself in a position where he would be set for life; he would never have to punch a clock. So the man’s only interest was in this temporal realm; not for one minute did he have a care about eternity, being totally devoid of faith. The the ministry was just a business to him. He had no interest at all in leading people into a genuine faith.

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Lk 16,1-8

(173f) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Catholicism >> Unholy sacrifice >> Offering sacrifice without God’s approval >> Sacrifice against the word of God – The unrighteous steward was never hired as a mediator between his Master and his clients; that is a position he assumed by his own authority. That sounds just like the Catholic Church; they were extremely oppressive to the people, telling them that if they didn’t bow to their demands, they would go to hell. All their doctrines and traditions were tailor-made to strip the people of their money. The unrighteous stewarded made a covenant with the people that his Master did not request, yet He required more from them than the unrighteous steward collected, for he demanded only a fraction of what they actually owed his Master. If people don’t accept the sacrifice of Jesus’ body on the cross as full payment for their sins, they will have to pay their debt in hell. The cross of Jesus was at the center of Catholicism, technically making them a Christian religion, yet they lorded themselves over the people as mediators, which made them a cult. It was the height of wickedness, telling the people their sin was not as egregious as God had told them, that if they worked out their salvation according to the Catholic traditions, they would go to heaven, without ever attempting to lead the people to faith in the truth.

(180e) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Wolves >> Be shrewd as wolves and more innocent than they appear >> Wolves are clever – Jesus said his own people are not very cleaver compared to those in the world who love money; nor do His people’s dedication to godliness rival the world’s shameful love of money. Jesus was essentially prophesying that in the last days the Church would grow cold and slow of heart and unable to compete with the wisdom of the world. The wisdom of God operates as a barometer of a person’s faith. Jesus expects His people to be more cunning and cleaver than the world, but the Church does not love God by comparison. The world wants what it wants, but we can’t say that about the Church; it  doesn’t want righteousness more than the world desires sin.

(217f) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> God gives up on you >> After you refuse to comply – The fact that the unrighteous steward was a manager suggests that he was the pastor of a church. The unrighteous steward will not be joining us in heaven, for he stole more than money from his Master; he stole human souls. Jesus in another parable said about His Father, “I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow and gathering where you scattered no seed” (Mat 25-24). If God is a hard man, why do we paint Him so softly and give ourselves so much leeway with Him? At every opportunity we spin the word of God in our favor, doing just what the unrighteous steward did, who required only a fraction from His Master’s clients than was expected of them.

Lk 16,1-7 

(18g) Sin >> False Judgment lacks evidence >> Temporal mindset

Lk 16,1-3

(203e) Denying Christ >> Dishonor God >> Stepping out of position

Lk 16-1,2

(4e) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Being accountable in your stewardship

(165e) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Do not partake of the world >> Do not desire the treasures of the world -- These verses go with verses 19-31

(186k) Works of the devil >> The result of lawlessness >> The reprobate >> God’s role in forming a reprobate >> Rejected by God


3-9 "The manager said to himself, 'What shall I do, since my master is taking the management away from me? I am not strong enough to dig; I am ashamed to beg. 4 'I know what I shall do, so that when I am removed from the management people will welcome me into their homes.' 5 "And he summoned each one of his master's debtors, and he began saying to the first, 'How much do you owe my master?' 6 "And he said, 'A hundred measures of oil.' And he said to him, 'Take your bill, and sit down quickly and write fifty.' 7 "Then he said to another, 'And how much do you owe?' And he said, 'A hundred measures of wheat.' He said to him, 'Take your bill, and write eighty.' 8 "And his master praised the unrighteous manager because he had acted shrewdly; for the sons of this age are more shrewd in relation to their own kind than the sons of light. 9 "And I say to you, make friends for yourselves by means of the wealth of unrighteousness, so that when it fails, they will receive you into the eternal dwellings.

 

Lk 16,3-9

(62c) Paradox >> Anomalies >> Responding cleverly to your enemies >> Cheat them

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Lk 16,3-8

(75j) Thy kingdom come >> Motives >> Being manipulative >> Controlling people by abusing authority

Lk 16-4

(240d) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Hindering the kingdom >> Natural disadvantage >> Beware when all men speak well of you >> Natural disadvantage of being popular

Lk 16,5-8

(177e) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> False doctrine >> Doctrine that tickles your ears – In the last days many unrighteous stewards have made deals with the people and told them that they really don’t owe God as much as they thought, but what they do owe they should give to them, and they will see that their Master gets it. Religion has told the people over the centuries that God is not demanding like the word of God says, and His expectations of us are not great, and their debt of sin is not severe, so all they have to do is follow their religion and they will find favor with God. The unrighteous steward taught in essence, ‘Just do what I say and I will make sure that God receives you,’ so these unrighteous stewards developed clever religions and doctrines that led the people to believe that if they just follow the clergy, they will be right with God. That is the very definition of a priest, but priest was not the position his Master assigned to him, for the Bible teaches that priests are no longer needed, for Christ is our Great High Priest. This unrighteous steward was acting as a priest, a very unrighteous one, for there are no good priests, since their position was eliminated 2000 years ago. Nevertheless, people are far more ready to believe in a lot of religious doctrines to excuse them from accountability of their sins before God through a priest, than to believe in Jesus Christ through His blood sacrifice. That is, people are far more willing to accept a religion than they are to accept responsibility for their own salvation.

Lk 16,5-7

(75d) Being Manipulative (Key verse)

Lk 16,8-13

(166e) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Wisdom of the world >> Nature Of Man’s Wisdom >> Man’s wisdom is fixed on gaining personal advantage

Lk 16-8

(112f) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Light >> Obeying the truth in broad daylight >> Church’s deeds in the light

(129k) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Unity >> Being in one accord >> Single minded >> Determination

Lk 16,9-31

(55l) Paradox >> Gain the world to lose your soul >> live this life to Lose eternal life

Lk 16-9

(47f) Judgment >> God Judges the world >> Hell is a place of torment – Jesus is telling the unrighteous steward to make friends by means of the unrighteous mammon, promising that it will fail, and when it does, his friends will receive him into the eternal dwellings. What does that mean? The fact that Jesus mentioned eternal dwellings means that Jesus is talking about either heaven or hell, and the unrighteous steward certainly didn't go to heaven. Rather, Jesus was describing the unrighteous steward’s experience in hell, that if he plays his cards right, he could create a better situation for himself in eternity. The one who has made many enemies in this life will in hell receive direct retribution from them. This draws a mental image of people seeking-out those in hell who sinned against them in this life and exacting revenge on them. Some say that hell is a very lonely place with no relationships, but Jesus is suggesting that there actually will be relationships in hell; therefore, He advised the unrighteous steward to develop relationships now, as opposed to making enemies in this life and having to contend with them forever in hell. Those who have made many enemies in this life will find hell all the more unpleasant by their fellow inmates. Not only will judgment befall him from God through shame and everlasting contempt, but added to that will be those who languish beside him and gloat over his suffering.

(47k) Judgment >> God judges the world >> Eternal judgment against unbelief >> Rejecting Christ

(59d) Paradox >> Two implied meanings >> Being sarcastic / Being clever

(63d) Sarcasm (Key verse)

(63l) Paradox >> Anomalies >> Sarcasm >> Scoffing at the wicked – Jesus told the unrighteous steward to make friends for himself in this life, so when he finds his place in hell, he won’t have to live alongside enemies that he made. The sin of the unrighteous steward was that he underbid the debt of those who owed his Master. We interpret the role of the unrighteous steward as the pastor of a church who preached a gospel that downplayed the subject of sin, so the one who owed 500-measures of oil thought he owed only 200, representing their sin level. The unrighteous steward made their lives easier by helping them believe that God was more acceptant of them without the need of His grace and mercy. Although the unrighteous steward did not lead them away from this horrible pit of eternal damnation, apparently his congregation thought he meant well, though he kept the money he received; his friends didn’t expect any more of him. Probably the saddest part of this whole story is that the people he supposedly helped didn’t understand that the unrighteous steward was their worst enemy, because he led them to this hellish place and away from a loving God who would have accepted them through the grace and mercy of Christ. He was in a position to reveal that their debt level of sin was so enormous it was impossible to pay it, so they needed to completely rely on the grace of God to forgive them. The saddest part is that the people were not angry with him for misleading them, but were happy that he lowered their bill.

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10-13 "He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much. 11 "Therefore if you have not been faithful in the use of unrighteous wealth, who will entrust the true riches to you? 12 "And if you have not been faithful in the use of that which is another's, who will give you that which is your own? 13 "No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth."

 

Lk 16,10-15

(22a) Sin >> Greed tries to satisfy man’s need for security >> The deception of greed

Lk 16,10-13

(4g) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> He who is faithful in little is also faithful in much – This is one of the many kingdom principles that Jesus established during his ministry. Give someone a dollar and see what he does with it. If he is faithful with it, he would probably be faithful with ten thousand dollars. It is the same way at church; if you see someone who is faithful in the little things, you would be safe to entrust him with bigger things. There are all kinds of criteria that pastors use to choose people for lay ministries and other purposes, and this is the number one criteria they use. They should be looking for people who are faithful in the little things. It’s also true in business; it is a universal principle; character is very important. There are those who are spiritual, who are interested in the Bible, who even have a prayer life, but lack character. There are those who would rather exploit people than to be entrusted with something valuable and important.

(102g) Thy kingdom come >> Faithfulness (Loyalty) >> Trustworthy >> Faithfulness – This describes the parable of the unrighteous steward who was put in charge of managing the owner’s business while he was gone, and of course he was utterly corrupt and saw the situation as an opportunity to steal from the company. This story is about faithfulness, loyalty and trust, and these are all things that pertain to faith, which obviously the unrighteous steward did not have. Each person can only serve one god, and if it is not the God of heaven, then he is an idolater. Ironically, idolatry is a sign that they don’t believe in God. There are many indications of faith and unbelief; sometimes we show signs of unbelief even though we do believe; other signs point to believing in God when the person really doesn’t. So it is our overall lifestyle that determines whether or not we believe. Jesus promised an inheritance waiting for us in heaven that will far exceed the value of money, so we should store up treasures in heaven “where moth and rust do not destroy and thieves do not break in and steal” (Mat 6-19). However, these are things unbelievers cannot do; though they can believe in God, they cannot believe to the point of changing their lives. They can only offer lip service and hold to a form of mental ascent in certain doctrines, but converting their beliefs into a changed life is impossible without faith, hence the difference between the believer and the unbeliever.

(113h) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> The anointing >> Anointed through obedience

Lk 16-10,11

(109b) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Revelations of the Holy Spirit >> Revelation of the gift of God

Lk 16-10

(222k) Kingdom of God >> The elusive Kingdom of Heaven >> Do not give what is holy to dogs >> Give to him who has >> Whoever has shall more be given – Gal 5-9 says “A little leaven leavens the whole lump of dough,” so any sample of ourselves is an accurate representation of our entire lives. Jesus placed very little value on money, which sounds like blasphemy in the ears of those who love money. Anybody could find a way to spend a million dollars a year, yet that same person could learn to live on only $10,000. Overabundance clouds our understanding and paints our value system and wastes our time making it and spending it. We would be further ahead serving the Lord. Note that Jesus compared money to true riches, suggesting that money is not true. He was talking about heaven and eternal life, saying that there was no equivalent of money in heaven, but there is something in heaven that will be far more valuable than money that we can gather here in this life, faith.

Lk 16-11,12

(222j) Kingdom of God >> The elusive Kingdom of Heaven >> Do not give what is holy to dogs >> Give to him who has >> Take from him who does not have – When Jesus said “who will entrust the true riches to you,” He meant that God won’t. He was saying that if we have not been faithful in the use of unrighteous mammon (calling money a necessary evil at best), then God won’t entrust His true riches to us, meaning we won't be going to heaven. What are God's true riches? At the top of the list is human souls, but there are other things that are very valuable to God, such as keeping His word. Those who are unfaithful in the things of the world will never be trusted with the things of God. The person who is unfaithful in the unrighteous mammon is an opportunist and will make the rest of us feel we need to watch our backs. However, the one who is brimming with the wisdom of the Spirit can be trusted with anything, because God has entrusted him with His treasures. Note that being spirit-filled can be faked, but no one can fake the wisdom of God. Therefore, the litmus test for spiritual leaders is to listen for the wisdom of God coming from their pulpits. Jesus said that these true riches actually belong to us, but God must personally give them. If we are unfaithful in the things of the world, He will not give the things He meant for us to be our greatest possession. It is a real travesty when God cannot trust us with His treasures, because then we are incomplete in our faith and walk with God.

Lk 16-12

(21b) Sin >> Disobedient to the call

(48j) Judgment >> Levels of judgment >> Judged by withdrawing rewards

Lk 16-13

(92e) Thy kingdom come >> The narrow way >> Trail of good works >> You cannot walk two trails The problem today is that people go into debt spending money they don’t have, and whether they pay off their credit cards and mortgages is scarcely in the interest of either the borrower or the lender, which makes the world all the more bizarre. When the Church assumes this lifestyle, it grossly violates this passage. Another word for materialism is hedonism, the pursuit of pleasure. No idol has ever satisfied anybody; people buy expensive toys because they think they will make them happy, but all idols have failed to satisfy their worshippers.

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14-18 Now the Pharisees, who were lovers of money, were listening to all these things and were scoffing at Him. 15 And He said to them, "You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of men, but God knows your hearts; for that which is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God. 16 "The Law and the Prophets were proclaimed until John; since that time the gospel of the kingdom of God has been preached, and everyone is forcing his way into it. 17 "But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one stroke of a letter of the Law to fail. 18 "Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries one who is divorced from a husband commits adultery. 

Lk 16,14-17

(249k) Priorities >> God’ s preeminence >> Wealth >> World’s perception of wealth >> The world's wealth erodes good values >> The world attains wealth by hook and crook

Lk 16-14,15

(74f) Thy kingdom come >> Heart is man’s central value system >> Where value interprets the man – Jesus sure knew how to rebuke the Pharisees. They were becoming wealthy off the backs of the people who had to work hard for what little they had, while the Pharisees enjoyed the prestige of being religious leaders of Israel. In a theocracy, that is like being a king. Definition of "theocracy": a nation whose religion and political state are one. That was the case with Israel, starting in the days of Moses. God mandated that their religion should govern them, so the religious leaders managed the people through the Law of Moses, but they used it to justify themselves and condemn others, so God’s response was to redefine His chosen people as those who would believe in Jesus for the forgiveness of sin.

(179b) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Hypocrisy >> Jesus rebukes the Pharisees >> Rebuked for loving money – Christ and the Pharisees were exact opposites of each other, indicating that most everything the world values is detestable to God, and that everything God values is detestable to the world. People must find ways around Him in order to introduce their own value system, since they cannot say God is wrong or evil, because He values things like love, justice and compassion, and nobody can conscientiously deny these things. So the world concurs with God that His values are good, but the world does not hold to them. They try to practice them to a point, but when somebody wrongs them, or when they are in a bad mood, all their values fly out the window, and they haul out their own value system and seek justice their way. Meanwhile, they have wronged others and forgiven themselves. The Pharisees were lovers of money, so when Jesus told the story of the unrighteous steward, it was a parable against them. They told the people how to find favor with God, and most of what they taught drew money into their pockets.

Lk 16-15

(57e) Paradox >> Opposites >> What is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God – The Pharisees were not people of the heart, and for this reason they hated Jesus on many fronts, not the least of which was His preaching against their love of money. He infringed on their business of religion. Jesus made this statement as a matter of fact; He didn’t say it was often true or most likely true, but said, “That which is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God.” He spoke it as a principle of His coming kingdom, suggesting that it was always true! This means that no matter what becomes popular in this world will invariably contradict God’s truth. Whatever man considers important is always detestable in the sight of God. Man’s value system is completely backwards and upside down. God’s children who love Him and devoted to Him and walking with Him are the only people whose value system is not utterly corrupt. Jesus said, “Beware when all men speak well of you” (Lk 6-26). If we start getting notable acclaim for our efforts and accomplishments, we might want to check our work to make sure it has God’s approval. In AD 300 the Church started developing a positive image as Catholicism gained a foothold in the world, proclaiming to be God’s one true church; they are really the contemporary Pharisees of our day.

(240e) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Hindering the kingdom >> Natural disadvantage >> Beware when all men speak well of you >> Natural disadvantage of seeking popularity

Lk 16-16,17

(90k) Thy kingdom come >> Keeping the law >> Unless you keep the law you will not see heaven

(187g) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man>> Die to the flesh >> Dying to receive the glory of God >> Dying to self precedes the resurrection

Lk 16-16

(46a) Judgment >> Spiritual warfare >> Subjecting your flesh >> Violent take it by force >> Taking the kingdom by force – Wherever Jesus went, huge crowds followed Him, and they pushed their way into front row seats to be closer to all He was saying and doing, but most of His spectators didn't accepted His blood sacrifice, hence they were never saved. So, what exactly was it that attracted them to Jesus? He cared about them for one thing, but all their interests were of this temporal realm. He was a novelty in their eyes that was destined to fade; they were not actually listening to His words. He spoke to them about eternal life and sacrificing this life to achieve the eternal kingdom. There is no forcing our way into the Kingdom of Heaven. Rather, we find it like a little child who quietly asks Jesus in her heart, and then quietly lives for Him the rest of her life. So, according to the flesh there is no forcing our way into the Kingdom of God, but according to the spirit there are many obstacles and entities that we cannot allow to stop us reaching our goal. The little girl who prayed and quietly lived for Jesus encountered many spiritual obstacles throughout her life, and she had to push through them to reach the shores of heavenly; the battles she fought were not visible to the naked eye.

Lk 16-17

(244g) Kingdom of God >> The eternal kingdom >> The word of God is eternal >> The word of God will outlast the creation

Lk 16-18

(134j) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Sins of the body >> Immorality >> Adultery >> Physical adultery – For reasons other than infidelity, it doesn’t matter if the divorced person is getting remarried or if someone is marrying a divorced person, in the eyes of God whenever they have sex they are committing adultery against the former spouse, for God does not recognize illegitimate divorce. A person can get divorced for any reason, but what is addressed here is who can remarry. We marry for life, and if we divorce on grounds other than infidelity, then we should remain singe for life. The person who divorces over physical or emotional abuse should not remarry for the sake of God’s word, but also because of a record of poor choice in partners. This is the sacrifice the person must make to avoid sin. In other words, if you marry the wrong person, you can ruin your life.

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19-21 "Now there was a rich man, and he habitually dressed in purple and fine linen, joyously living in splendor every day. 20 "And a poor man named Lazarus was laid at his gate, covered with sores, 21 and longing to be fed with the crumbs which were falling from the rich man's table; besides, even the dogs were coming and licking his sores.

 

Lk 16,19-31

(22a) Sin >> Greed tries to satisfy man’s need for security >> The deception of greed – We think people who are happy in this life are least likely to go to hell, but that is not the case. There is something about wealth that mimics the approval of God that others readily accept, but God does not accept wealth as an emblem His approval. People figure that if a person is well-off, he must have something going for him; he must have good common sense, fortitude, ambition; he must be pretty cleaver; he must be wise and know how to make good decisions, but none of these things can save him from the flames of hell.

(47c) Judgment >> Hell is a place of sorrow >> Hell is to be avoided at any cost – It seems that the rich man wasn’t asking for much, but then neither was the Lazarus. The rich man only asked for a single drop of water and didn’t get it, so apparently thirst is a tormenting punishment in hell. Lazarus didn’t ask for much either; he didn’t ask for a turkey dinner or a nice warm bed; he only asked for a few crumbs and didn’t get it. The rich man went to hell because he was rich and Lazarus went to heaven because he was poor; this is the way Jesus told the story. Although there are some rich people who go to heaven, their numbers are small. The gospel of the kingdom was actually designed for the poor and misfortunate of the world, for they have the least to lose, whereas the rich are called to first give up their fortunes in order to embrace the truth of God’s kingdom. The poor have very little they must sacrifice, but they do have to give God their loyalty, faith and trust. That is all He asks from us, but the rich trust in their money; it is their God. Hell is the hallmark of failing wealth.

(56k) Paradox >> Opposites >> Least are greatest >> Smallest in the eyes of men are big to God – Lazarus was in bad shape; he was most likely homeless for a long time, probably diseased from poor hygiene and regularly beaten by robbers, the last morsel of sustenance taken from him, and he sat at the rich man’s gate hoping for mercy. The angels came and took Lazarus away to Abraham’s bosom, but no angels came for the rich man. They left him for dead and he descended to the flames of hell. He probably was looking for heaven and the pearly gates, thinking they belonged to him like everything else as a continuation of his former life.

(56l) Paradox >> Opposites >> Greatest are least in the eyes of God – We know the name of the poor man but not the rich man.

(165e) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Do not partake of the world >> Do not desire the treasures of the world -- These verses go with verses 1&2

(182l) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Deception >> Unaware of the spirit world

(208e) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Salvation verses >> Preaching on hell

(218a) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> You cannot control the judgment of God >> You cannot control how God responds to rejection

(221a) Kingdom of God >> The elusive Kingdom of Heaven >> Kingdom hidden behind the veil from the world >> God hides from man’s ignorance >> God hides from those who are not looking for Him

(225c) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Parables >> Parables about wealth >> Parables about a rich man -- These verses go with verses 1-13

(248i) Priorities >> God’ s preeminence >> Values >> Valuing God >> Do not value things that will devalue God

(249m) Priorities >> God’ s preeminence >> Wealth >> World’s perception of wealth >> The world’s wealth has no value >> The world’s wealth cannot afford a single soul

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Lk 16,19-21

(20d) Sin >> Nature of sin >> Motives of unbelief -- These verses go with verses 1-13

(157d) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of being hell-bound >> Being displeasing to God >> Leading a fruitless lifestyle

Lk 16-19

(22c) Sin >> Greed takes without consideration for others >> Serving self The word “rich” is a relative term; we are rich compared to others. Give money to a homeless person and he will probably spend it on beer and cigarettes, so how does he need money? The truly poor person is one who will receive the gospel of Christ, and he will benefit from our assistance. Once he is a Christian Psalm 37-25 says, “I have been young and now I am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his descendants begging bread.” Who are the poor? Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven” (Mat 5-3). Lazarus, when he died, found his place in Abraham’s bosom; he was truly poor, because he was open to God's help, but those who close their heart to Him we can't help either. Some have nothing, yet we should not consider them poor, being they could do more with what they've been given. People like this exploit the system and reject their conscience and spend their money without consideration for others, so it is their children who represent Lazarus, and the parents represent the rich man without a name, who died and was forgotten and went to hell because he never once considered the poor.

(170d) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Seeking the glory of man >> Greed and lust are the glory of man >> Earthly riches are the glory of man – The rich man enjoyed his money; what's wrong with that? In heaven we will all be rich beyond our wildest dreams and enjoy our lives in splendor, and so the rich man was acting like the average person in heaven, but he wasn’t in heaven; he was living in this life, while others were living in dire poverty. This is the way it has been since the beginning of time with the rich getting wealthy off the backs of the poor. We would think the rich would protect the middleclass, since they are mostly responsible for making them wealthy, but that usually is not the way it goes. The rich engorge themselves with the wealth of the middleclass through excessive greed, exploiting and oppressing them, sacrificing their chief source of wealth to temporarily become wealthier than ever, destroying any prospect of sustaining their wealth. They become unimaginably rich at the cost of future generations, even sacrificing the future of their own prodigy. If they had any sense they would protect the middleclass, but they are only interested in becoming ultra-rich, not just billionaires but trillionaires. The ultra-rich in the world today control the government, not for power and affluence but for legislative purposes to ensure laws are passed in their favor to benefit their pursuit of wealth. This is called a plutonomy, where the ultra-rich control governments for the sake of further increasing their wealth. They loosen regulations on the environment and then strip the earth of its natural resources and beauty, leaving open sores for runoff to erode chemical-laden soil, polluting local streams and rivers. They do the same to people, until the ultra-rich virtually own everything. Greed is never content; it knows no bounds; it has no off-switch. If one is a millionaire, he wants to be a billionaire, if a billionaire then a trillionaire; it just never ends. “What else is there to assimilate?” This is what the rich man says in his heart, and so they suck dry the resources of man and earth, until there is nothing left, until the economy itself is no longer sustainable and then collapses on itself. The ultra-rich go into hiding with their bars of gold and wait for the economy to rebound, so they can resume their position at the top of the world. This is what’s wrong with the rich man joyfully living in splendor every day, not just that he didn’t care about the poor, but that he created the poor. He was the reason Lazarus was a beggar, seeking scraps off the rich man’s table. This is basically the wage that people earn these days. They work forty hours a week and barely have enough to make ends meet, their income resembling scraps off the rich man’s table, and this will never end until Jesus returns and establishes His Millennial Kingdom and teaches man how they could have lived throughout the ages.


22-26 "Now the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham's bosom; and the rich man also died and was buried. 23 "In Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom. 24 "And he cried out and said, 'Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus so that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool off my tongue, for I am in agony in this flame.' 25 "But Abraham said, 'Child, remember that during your life you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus bad things; but now he is being comforted here, and you are in agony. 26 'And besides all this, between us and you there is a great chasm fixed, so that those who wish to come over from here to you will not be able, and that none may cross over from there to us.'

 

Lk 16,22-31

(185d) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Mystery of lawlessness >> Denying Christ in spite of His proven identity

Lk 16,22-26

(12c) Servant >> Examples of God’s people >> Abraham is our example of faith – Abraham’s bosom is best described as the place where all old covenant people went who walked by the faith of Abraham. In Old Testament terms the faith of Abraham was translated as obeying the prophets, but in New Testament terms it is translated as obeying the Holy Spirit. All people who go to heaven believe in God with the faith of Abraham. When Lazarus died, it says his soul was taken by the angels to Abraham’s bosom, taken in many respects as the angels will bodily “gather together His elect” in the rapture (Mat 24-31). The angels left the body of Lazarus to decompose, being different from the rapture, whereas our bodies will be suddenly transformed into spiritual bodies in the twinkling of an eye. Abraham’s bosom was a heavenly place, not heaven itself but an old covenant version of heaven, a place where the souls of man went, until Christ could create a way for His people to enter true heaven through the door of His own flesh.

(202k) Denying Christ >> Running from God >> Wicked men cannot approach the throne of God >> Goats are unsaved church attendants

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Lk 16-22,23

(243i) Kingdom of God >> The eternal kingdom >> The indestructible kingdom >> The body of Christ is indestructible >> Our spiritual bodies are indestructible

Lk 16-22

(15d) Servant >> Ministering spirits >> Angels Perform certain duties – We know Lazarus but Jesus did not give a name to the rich man; when he died, he was buried. This implies that no one came for him; when the rich man died, he suddenly found himself alone, no one tended to him, no one cared for him; they just buried him. The rich man was so tied to the material world that he literally identified himself with it, so when he died, he lost his identity. During his life he nurtured his body and pampered it, meanwhile leaving Lazarus to starve. The rich man’s body and his spirit were undergoing many of the same changes, undergoing decay, as it were a death that would never end. They buried the rich man, “and in Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and saw Abraham far away, and Lazarus in his bosom.” Everybody is going to die, and when that day comes, we had better hope an angel comes for us. There may be a host of people gathered around our deathbed; we might not physically die alone, but when the body can no longer house our spirit and evicts us, there had better be someone on the other side waiting for us. If we die and there is no one there to escort us to heaven, we cannot wander in the darkness and expect to find the door of heaven, and even if we found it, the door would be locked, and it would be no good to knock, because no one would answer. We need an escort if we are going to see heaven. If we believed in Jesus, when we are met by the angels on the other side, they will gladly escort us into the Kingdom of Heaven, where the door will be standing open for us to enter.

(57f) Paradox >> Opposites >> To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord – Abraham’s bosom represents a place where all the old covenant believing saints went when they died prior to the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Now when someone dies in the Lord, he goes directly to heaven (see: Jn 10-16; 2Cor 5,6-8; Eph 2-15,16). Sheol is defined as the place of the dead without distinction between the righteous and the wicked. There was an insurmountable chasm fixed between these two separate areas of Sheol with death and Hades on one side and Abraham and God's children on the other. Presumably the bottomless pit, as it is called, represents the difference between these two places, being also the difference between faith and unbelief, and after Jesus shed His blood the chasm widened and deepened. Now the sinner is thrown into the bottomless pit with the devil and his angels, the same crevasse that once divided Abraham's bosom from Hades.

(151ba) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> New Testament bears witness of the Old >> The Patriarchs >> Abraham >> Faith of Abraham

Lk 16-23,24

(47a) Hell (Key verse) – There are some who believe there is no actual hell, as though certain people centuries ago have tampered with the Bible and injected their own ideas to instill fear in the parishioners of the Church. The biggest problem with their claim is that they would need to have marbled their deception throughout the Scriptures, which would have been a monumental task. Those who believe there is no hell think that people who don’t make it to heaven are destroyed and no longer exist. However, hell is a place where life does not exist as we know it, yet the inhabitants are conscious of their existence; they are the living dead. There are many movies based on this concept. Hollywood’s depiction of the living dead may not be the same as the biblical account, but it is similar. There is a hell and those who go there have already died, and now they are wondering spirits hopelessly looking for a way to escape their darkness.

Lk 16,24-31

(193j) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Turn from sin to God >> Repent >> Consequences for not repenting

(241b) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Hindering the kingdom >> Obstacles in the way of the kingdom >> Ask but don’t receive >> Asking for something that is not in His will

Lk 16-25

(48g) Judgment >> Levels of judgment >> Judged according to your standard of measure

(69i) Authority >> Righteous judgment (Outcome of Discernment) >> Judging the flesh by the Spirit – Jesus made hell sound like people go there because they had a good life, and people go to heaven because they had a miserable life. How could that be the best explanation for a person's final destination? This is an extreme generalization contrasting the easy life of the rich man versus Lazarus' dire poverty. It is safe to say that Lazarus died much younger then the rich man, being that he was probably malnourished and ill-treated and susceptible to disease, whereas the rich man had all the comforts of life afforded to him. Jesus was saying that those who live in luxury tend to go to hell because they have everything they need and have no use for God, whereas the poor man asked Jesus in his heart since he had no hope for this life, perhaps the afterlife would be more gracious to him. This parable does not mean that every rich man goes to hell and every poor man goes to heaven, but this is generally the way it goes. For the poor man faith is a win-win covenant with God, but not for the rich man. Poor people can more easily see their spiritual need of Christ, because there isn’t anything in the way, whereas the rich man has his wealth in the way of seeing his stark spiritual poverty. The poor man can easily believe that his spirit is poor as his flesh, whereas the rich man tends to think that if he has a spirit, it must be wealthy too.

(228a) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> Comforted >> God comforts you in times of adversity >> He comforts you in your suffering – Had the rich man asked why this was happening to him, Abraham might have quoted Paul, “This is a plain indication of God's righteous judgment… after all it is only just for God to repay [you] with affliction… and to give relief to [Lazarus who was] afflicted” (2The 1,5-7). This is what Jesus said to the rich man: "You received your reward in full" (Mat 6-2,5,16). He lived in his royal pomp, strutting in gorgeous robes like a king, and now he is in hell and Lazarus is in heaven because he paid no attention to the poor. This is the justice of God. Jesus made it sound as though the rich man deserved to be punished because he was rich and Lazarus deserved heaven because he was poor. This is one perspective; another is, "without faith it is impossible to please [God]" (Heb 11-6). Putting them together it suggests that wealthy people find it very difficult to believe in God from their luxurious lifestyles masking over their spiritual impoverishment. In contrast, Lazarus had the mindset that if man won’t help him, then maybe God will. This is not the mindset of every person who suffers, but one who endures his suffering. Some people blame God for their suffering, but Lazarus did not accuse God of his miserable life; instead, he saw himself from a realistic point of view. He was probably born a surf into a poor family almost devoid of opportunity, which led him to the rich man’s gate begging for morsels. It was nobody’s fault, and it especially wasn’t God’s fault. That is how the poor man understood his life, and because he didn’t blame God for his miseries, his heart was open to believing in Him, and for this reason God was with him.

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27-31 "And he said, 'Then I beg you, father, that you send him to my father's house - 28 for I have five brothers -in order that he may warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.' 29 "But Abraham said, 'They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.' 30 "But he said, 'No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent!' 31 "But he said to him, 'If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.' "

 

Lk 16,27-31

(112b) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Light >> Jesus’ light overcomes darkness >> The light of His power – Verse 31 contains the most profound statement Jesus ever made (in my opinion). He said that the Scriptures are more convincing than signs and wonders, that if God's word does not persuade them to believe in Jesus, then nothing else will either, not even someone rising from the dead. Signs and wonders cannot transfer the miracle of faith, only the Holy Spirit can do that, working with the word of God, and it was the rich man’s resistance of the Holy Spirit that earned him a place in hell. The rich man wanted Lazarus to go to his brothers since he did not repent at the hearing of God’s word, and for this reason he didn’t expect his brothers to repent either. Abraham said they actually had a better chance of salvation and repentance in the hearing of God’s word than witnessing someone rise from the dead! During His ministry Jesus raised people from the dead, but it was His word that changed the world. His signs and wonders merely acted as a seal that proved His identity as the Son of God and Israel's Messiah to the people in His day, but His word continues to influence people in our time. Had the gospel writers documented all the miracles He performed without recording a single word, Jesus would have slipped into obscurity or possibly been admired as a novelty. Without His words His sacrifice would have meant nothing; He would have been just another man who met an unjust end.

(149c) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness to Jesus >> Evangelism >> Three key messages in evangelism >> Righteousness, judgment and self-control

(168j) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> The world has deaf ears to God >> Deaf from a hardened heart

(183h) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Spirit of Error (Anti-Christ / Anti-Semitism) >> Spirit of the broad road >> Spirit of unbelief

(186h) Works of the devil >> The result of lawlessness >> The reprobate >> Man’s role in becoming a reprobate >> Being unable to repent

(199k) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Rejecting Christ >> Unwilling to receive Christ >> Ignoring Christ – It would seem that the rich man found his place in hell by accident, but in fact the rich man made his decision through his love of money. In the rich man’s mind there is a great chasm fixed between himself and God, called unbelief. The rich man continued living according to the way his parents raised him because it was all he knew. Switching from the god of money to the God of heaven would have been a decision his friends and family would have disapproved. The poor are facing a similar chasm, only the way they live is not very appealing, so it is easier for them to step to the other side with Abraham and his children. In the next life, making this simple passage becomes impossible, because faith is not possible in Hades. Living and walking by faith just didn’t befit the rich man, but now he would like to change his mind. He didn’t want heaven so much as he just didn’t like being in hell, but God doesn’t want people populating His heaven who are merely trying to avoid hell; He wants them to actually desire heaven.

Lk 16,29-31

(79h) Thy kingdom come >> Know the word >> Practice listening to God’s word so you can hear it

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