“Bought friends” – Unfromme thoughts to Luke 16,1-9


Makes friends with the unrighteous Mammon, that ye may be received into the eternal dwellings when it comes to an end. (Lk 16,9)

“How to buy friends? To the best of our knowledge, by thinking from the end.“

Yaw, speculate, gamble… and loss and other to your money. Financial scandals is a recurring theme in the media. Again and again, once it hits the churches, as a concrete case, the recent past shows.

Financial scandals employees, however, already in ancient times, the people. Economic success and crash were subjects of everyday life in a world in which trade and Handel money with all the funds were held, and the law was the Stronger and more Powerful.

In this experience, a parable follows that of the Evangelist Luke, Jesus puts in the mouth; maybe it goes back to the Rabbi himself, knew beat with extravagant Stories his audience in a spell, and it is certain she was told but no longer around (cf. Lk 19,1-9):

A managing Director is displayed in his boss due to a waste of money and fired. In this critical situation, in which he is suddenly and unexpectedly come, he thinks, how he can use his own resources, in order to escape the social. Sober, he acknowledges that his skills are limited: For practical work, he is not fit to to be ashamed of begging he – would be the proof of his descent. As he focuses on his business relationships and adjusted for the loans in favor of the debtor. He calls them, and animated them to fake the documents, to whom he leaves fifty percent of the debt, another twenty percent. He has earned previously in your debt, so he now deserves to have their debt service. As he has so far represented the interests of the creditor, he is now to a debt Advisor with criminal energy. Scruples he did not: whatever. His ancestral Job, he’s going on eh, and one Hand washes the other – with his immoral offer, it creates a dependency on the business partner does not come out so easily: He will have the foot in the door… you will have to endure, his new friends.

This is a solution! With lubricated friends life will continue to run, if not like clockwork but somewhat tolerable.

A life well done, good guy, this CEO! Knows how he can turn things to his favor. That he acts contrary to good Faith, is unacceptable.

The Friends? Will know, with what you have to do it: The friendship was bought with dirty money. But you also know that he has improved with his criminal energy of your own situation. You will not forget.

And the Moral of the story? Save your skin, no matter how? Best authentic and cheating, if it is to your advantage? Don’t worry about rights and obligations when it comes to your own head?

This is probably the morals of the world has always, and Luke and his community, you know as well as we do Today. And in the perspective of this world, Jesus reads a Moral from the story, such as a call for corruption, make unto yourselves friends with the unrighteous Mammon.

But from the perspective of the Eternal, from which the narrative is understood to be, the morality is different. Because when it comes to the end, back the own finitude and the finitude of this world and its resources in the view. Money and houses are no safe assets anymore. Only the investment in eternal dwellings appears to be still profitable.

What was enjoyed for Luke and his time may no longer make sense in our times so: On heaven and eternity as an investment destination will be of little speculation. But then, as now, a human experience that the last shirt has no pockets, and the question of the balance then to the credit aims.

Makes friends with the unrighteous Mammon. – The Moral from the from the end, read the history could be: Creating sustainable relationships with the money you pull out of the unjust conditions of this world. Friendship creates relations with your capital. Let it work, invested it’s future-oriented and sustainable: Namely in people, in relationships, in loyalty, and education, in friendships. This is also a risk investment with open-hearth output. But the gain in quality of life and experience of the world is a reasonably safe rate of return.


about the author:

Dr. theol. Hildegard king, apl. Professor of Church history at the Institute for Catholic theology at the TU Dresden. Lives in Chemnitz.




Editorial Responsibility: Martin, Cords, Stations, Officer