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The Parable about a Dishonest Manager

16 Now Jesus[a] was saying to the disciples, “A rich man had a servant manager who was accused of wasting his assets. So he called for him and asked him, ‘What’s this I hear about you? You can’t be my manager any longer. Now give me a report about your management!’

“Then the servant manager told himself, ‘What should I do? My master is taking my position away from me. I’m not strong enough to plow, and I’m ashamed to beg. I know what I’ll do so that people[b] will welcome me into their homes when I’m dismissed from my job.’

“So he called for each of his master’s debtors. He asked the first, ‘How much do you owe my master?’ The man replied, ‘A hundred jars of olive oil.’ The manager[c] told him, ‘Get your bill. Sit down quickly and write “50.”’ Then he asked another debtor,[d] ‘How much do you owe?’ The man replied, ‘A hundred containers of wheat.’ The manager[e] told him, ‘Get your bill and write “80.”’ The master praised the dishonest servant manager for being so clever, because worldly people[f] are more clever than enlightened people[g] in dealing with their own.[h]

“I’m telling you, make friends for yourselves by means of unrighteous wealth, so that when it fails, they will welcome you into eternal homes.[i] 10 Whoever is faithful with very little is also faithful with a lot, and whoever is dishonest with very little is also dishonest with a lot. 11 So if you haven’t been faithful with unrighteous wealth, who will trust you with true wealth? 12 And if you haven’t been faithful with what belongs to foreigners, who will give you what is your own?

13 “No servant can serve two masters, because either he will hate one and love the other, or be loyal to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and wealth!”

The Law and the Kingdom of God(A)

14 Now the Pharisees, who love money, had been listening to all this and began to ridicule Jesus.[j] 15 So he told them, “You try to justify yourselves in front of people, but God knows your hearts, because what is highly valued by people is detestable to God.

16 “The Law and the Prophets were fulfilled[k] with John. Since then, the good news about the kingdom of God is being proclaimed, and everybody enters it enthusiastically.[l] 17 However, it is easier for heaven and earth to disappear than for one stroke of a letter in the Law to be dropped. 18 Any man who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery, and the man who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.”

The Rich Man and Lazarus

19 “Once there was a rich man who used to dress in purple and fine linen and live in great luxury every day. 20 A beggar named Lazarus, who was covered with sores, was brought to his gate. 21 He was always trying to satisfy his hunger with what fell[m] from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs used to come and lick his sores.

22 “One day, the beggar died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 In the afterlife,[n] where he was in constant torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away and Lazarus by his side. 24 So he shouted, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me! Send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water to cool off my tongue, because I am suffering in this fire.’

25 “But Abraham said, ‘My child, remember that during your lifetime you received blessings,[o] while Lazarus received hardships.[p] But now he is being comforted here, while you suffer. 26 Besides all this, a wide chasm has been fixed between us, so that those who want to cross from this side to you cannot do so, nor can they cross from your side to us.’

27 “The rich man[q] said, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus[r] to my father’s house— 28 because I have five brothers—to warn them, so that they won’t end up in this place of torture, too.’

29 “Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets. They should listen to them!’

30 “But the rich man[s] replied, ‘No, father Abraham! But if someone from the dead went to them, they would repent.’

31 “Then Abraham[t] told him, ‘If your brothers[u] do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded, even if someone were to rise from the dead.’”


  1. Luke 16:1 Lit. he
  2. Luke 16:4 Lit. they
  3. Luke 16:6 Lit. He
  4. Luke 16:7 The Gk. lacks debtor
  5. Luke 16:7 Lit. He
  6. Luke 16:8 Lit. the sons of this age
  7. Luke 16:8 Lit. the sons of light
  8. Luke 16:8 Lit. own generation
  9. Luke 16:9 Lit. tents
  10. Luke 16:14 Lit. him
  11. Luke 16:16 The Gk. lacks were fulfilled
  12. Luke 16:16 Or forcefully; Lit. everybody forces their way into it
  13. Luke 16:21 Other mss. read the scraps that fell
  14. Luke 16:23 Lit. Hades, i.e. the realm of the dead
  15. Luke 16:25 Lit. good things
  16. Luke 16:25 Lit. and Lazarus in like manner evil things
  17. Luke 16:27 Lit. He
  18. Luke 16:27 Lit. him
  19. Luke 16:30 Lit. he
  20. Luke 16:31 Lit. he
  21. Luke 16:31 Lit. If they