Sunday, August 24, 2014

Unrighteous Wealth (7) Allegiance

The shrewd manger was making a shift in allegiance from the rich man to the people who owed him money. This represents the shift in loyalty we make when we become a Christian. The shrewd manager understood that a person shifting allegiance must make a total break.

No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other (Luke 16:13).
Many Christians fail to do this. They hang onto some of the things that were important to them in their old life. This divided loyalty is dangerous.

We are ambivalent about the shrewd manager, because we think that he was dishonest to change the values of the debts owed to his master, but we do not understand the situation.

The shrewd manager knew that most of the wealth of the rich man was “unrighteous wealth”. It was stolen from other people, through various tricky activities by him and his parents. Therefore, the shrewd manager was not robbing the rich man of his wealth.

The wealth he took from him had been stolen from someone else. The shrewd manager had worked for the rich man, so he knew how he had gained his wealth. He was not stealing from the rich man, because the wealth of the rich man was unrighteous wealth. He was making restitution on his behalf. As the agent of the rich man, he was doing what the Torah required.

The shrewd manager had given his allegiance to the wrong person. He seemed to be in a good place, but when he least expected it, the rich man turned against him for no reason. That is the way it is for those who give allegiance to the devil. Life seems good for a start, but when they are vulnerable, the devil attacks ruthlessly and tries to destroy them. They need to shift allegiance as soon as they can. Changing allegiance means getting rid of everything linked to the old life, including unrighteous wealth.

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