The 25th Sunday of the Year

Am 8:4-7; 1 Tim 2:1-8; Lk 16:1-13 (year c)

‘No servant can be the slave of two masters: he will either hate the first and love the second, or treat the first with respect and the second with scorn. You cannot be the slave of God and money.”

The Gospel according to Luke is uncompromising in its defence of the poor and denunciation of uncaring wealth. Jesus did not condemn wealth in itself. What he condemned was the all too frequent consequences of unthinking wealth.

Wealth has the power to distort fundamental human values. It has the power to render us insensitive to the poverty that is so frequently its price. We like to think that wealth is simply an inanimate possession. Jesus insisted that wealth has the power to possess us, to become our master and overriding preoccupation.

The prophet Amos, writing in the eighth century before Christ, condemned the excesses of wealth. His analysis would apply equally to our own global society, such is the power of wealth to distort and destroy.

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