Luke 16:9 says, “I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.”
Here, Jesus himself is speaking to his disciples using a parable. The nature of the parable has to do with how we as human beings are called to value friendship relative to managing our wealth and resources.
God’s people represent the center of life and living; as God’s children we are to be alert in responding to the needs of people in the communities wherein we make our homes.
Jesus compels us to use mammon (worldly wealth) to gain friends; to benefit others during our short time here on earth. In doing so, we gain eternal benefits. Those we help over the course of our lives; that is, our friends will show their gratitude when we meet in our eternal home.
Luke 12:4 says, “I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more.” Notice, that Jesus refers to his disciples as friends.
The word friend includes relatives; as people are brought together by relationships or circumstances that facilitate human interaction.
We are to enjoy friends and friendship in this world. Making friends is a function of being members of God’s family. Thus, we pray “thy kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven.”
God’s providence allows for our ability to gain capital, wealth and nice things knowing that we will only possess them for a short time. Using our capital and resources to help others tells the world that we have professed our faith in Jesus Christ.
Luke 9:29-31 says, “As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, speaking with Jesus. They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem.”
Knowing that life belongs to God; and that, there is life beyond death; Jesus implores us to be friendly and make friends. He implores us to use all we gain from mammon in the cause of befriending others.
When our life is over, and we have no more need of our wealth, God (or possibly his angels or those who we have befriended) will welcome us into our eternal habitation; i.e., heaven.
Eternal life does not begin in the future; it is already the possession of those who have entered into fellowship with Jesus Christ. The Kingdom of Heaven, likewise, the revelation of God in Christ is present in our work of gaining friends.
Lord God, Sovereign Lord of heaven and earth; God of Abraham, Issac and Jacob, Lord God, who we know in the special revelation of Jesus Christ, we prostrate ourselves before you, having faith that if we humble ourselves and pray, that you will hear us, and heal our land. Lord, we love you, we praise you, we worship you.
Our Father who is in heaven, touch our hearts and minds and show us how to respond to your presence in our lives. You are our God, and we are your children; please breath on us, and renew our hearts with your word; for your word is the light that instructs our humanity. Please Lord, give us the wisdom and strength to be more like Jesus. In Jesus name we pray. Amen