16:8 The 1 master commended the dishonest 2 manager because he acted shrewdly. 3 For the people 4 of this world are more shrewd in dealing with their contemporaries 5 than the people 6 of light. 16:9 And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by how you use worldly wealth, 7 so that when it runs out you will be welcomed 8 into the eternal homes. 9
16:10 “The one who is faithful in a very little 10 is also faithful in much, and the one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much. 16:11 If then you haven’t been trustworthy 11 in handling worldly wealth, 12 who will entrust you with the true riches? 13 16:12 And if you haven’t been trustworthy 14 with someone else’s property, 15 who will give you your own 16 ?
[16:8] 2 sn Is the manager dishonest because of what he just did? Or is it a reference to what he had done earlier, described in v. 1? This is a difficult question, but it seems unlikely that the master, having fired the man for prior dishonesty, would now commend those same actions. It would also be unusual for Jesus to make that point of the story the example. Thus it is more likely the reference to dishonesty goes back to the earliest events, while the commendation is for the cleverness of the former manager reflected in vv. 5-7.
[16:8] 3 sn Where this parable ends is debated: Does it conclude with v. 7, after v. 8a, after v. 8b, or after v. 9? Verse 8a looks as if it is still part of the story, with its clear reference to the manager, while 8b looks like Jesus’ application, since its remarks are more general. So it is most likely the parable stops after v. 8a.
[16:9] 7 tn Grk “unrighteous mammon.” Mammon is the Aramaic term for wealth or possessions. The point is not that money is inherently evil, but that it is often misused so that it is a means of evil; see 1 Tim 6:6-10, 17-19. The call is to be generous and kind in its use. Zacchaeus becomes the example of this in Luke’s Gospel (19:1-10).