The parable that Jesus tells today (Luke 16:1-13) is a very odd kind of story – one that has perplexed people across the generations. Does he really praise the astuteness of the steward for doing something at least immoral, if not illegal, in the final stages of his term as the steward for the rich man? What is going on here? So many parts of the story are simply weird, including the whole conduct of the rich man, the steward and the debtors. Lots of different explanations have been offered by saints and scholars, but few are deeply convincing. It seems that all that Jesus says about this is really by way of introduction to a more significant theme that often is lost in the midst of the weirdness of the parable – the need to be ready for the crisis that is looming large in the lives of the Jewish community, and by extension to be applied by our present community to a crisis that continues to unfold within the western church and world.

Recorded at St Paul’s, 9.30am (10mins)

Sunday 25, Year C.