Thursday after Reminiscere
Scripture: St. Luke 16:10-18 (NKJV)
16:10 “He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much. 11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? 12 And if you have not been faithful in what is another man’s, who will give you what 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 loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.”
14 Now the Pharisees, who were lovers of money, also heard all these things, and they derided Him. 15 And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God.
16 “The law and the prophets were until John. Since that time the kingdom of God has been preached, and everyone is pressing into it. 17 And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one tittle of the law to fail.
18 “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced from her husband commits adultery.”
In verses 10-13 Jesus speaks about faithful and just stewards; about unfaithful and unjust stewards; and about serving only one master. He says we cannot serve both God and the things of this world. If we are honest with ourselves, we have to admit that we usually serve the wrong master—we serve ourselves and our desires. In fact, the first tenet of Christianity is that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom 3:23). Of ourselves we do not have it in us to be faithful to God, of ourselves we want to be our own master.
However, as baptized Christians we also know that God Himself stepped in and did something about our lost state. In other words, we have been given a new master—the Holy Triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit! By His grace we now serve Him.
Our loving God gave us the Sacrament of Baptism through which He washes us from our sins and makes us His disciples. In Luther’s explanation he asks the question, “What does such baptizing with water indicate?” He answers: “It indicates that the Old Adam in us should by daily contrition and repentance be drowned and die with all sins and evil desires, and that a new man should daily emerge and arise to live before God in righteousness and purity forever.” Thank God that He indeed brought us into His Kingdom, given us a new master, and keeps us into eternity.
We pray: O God, who sees that of ourselves we have no strength, keep us both outwardly and inwardly that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.