Eighth Sunday After Pentecost The Gospel Luc. 16. v. I. Thursday Meditation: A Plaine Path-way To Heaven Thomas Hill 1634
GOSPEL Luke 16: 1-9
At that time, Jesus spoke to His disciples this parable: "There was a certain rich man, who had a steward; and the same was accused unto him that he was wasting his goods. And he called him, and said unto him, 'What is this that I hear of thee? render the account of thy stewardship; for thou canst be no longer steward.' "And the steward said within himself, 'What shall I do, seeing that my lord taketh away the stewardship from me? I have not strength to dig; to beg I am ashamed. I am resolved what to do, that, when I am put out of the stewardship, they may receive me into their houses.' And calling to him each one of his lord's debtors, he said to the first, 'How much owest thou unto my lord?' And he said, 'A hundred measures of oil.' And he said unto him, 'Take thy bond, and sit down quickly and write fifty.' Then said he to another, 'And how much owest thou?' And he said, 'A hundred measures of wheat.' He saith unto him, 'Take thy bond, and write fourscore.' "And his lord commended the unrighteous steward because he had done wisely: for the sons of this world are for their own generation wiser than the sons of the light. And I say unto you, Make to yourselves friends by means of the mammon of unrighteousness; that, when it shall fail, they may receive you into the eternal tabernacles."
As every man is a bailiff unto almighty God, having received of him goods of nature, fortune, and grace more or less, & of grace, ( whatsoever it is of nature and fortune) more we might have received, if the fault were not ours,for the goods of grace Christ saith, to him that hath, to wit, and useth it well,more shall be given, and to him that hath not, that is to say, that hath and and useth it not well, even that which he hath shall be taken away.
And as every man is a Bailiff, so is he but a Bailiff, not Master thereof, being to render an accompt to God the Master and Lord of all. And as he is a bailiff, so may he repute himself an ill Bailiff, that hath misspent, and wasted his Masters goods in one thing or other: and (to admit the goods of nature and grace) of the goods of fortune God doth in a mystery declare how men do commonly waste them.
His words are these unto the Prophet Ezechiel: Take sword, sayth he, and shave off the hairs of thy head, and take weights, and weigh them into three parts:one part thou shall burn with fire in the midst of the city; another third part thou shalt cut in pieces with a sword; the other third part thou shalt cast, and disperse abroad in the wind.
In this God would literally signify his revenge upon the people of the Jews, that were to be divided into three parts, of which one part was to be consumed and burned with fire by the Chaldeans, another to be slain by the sword, another to be taken captive: but mystically he did describe, how profanely men do misspend and waste the goods of fortune, that is to say, the riches that God hath committed to their charge.
The hairs of our head are excremental parts, and superfluities of nature, which if they be suffered to grow over long, they fall about our eyes, and hinder our sight; Since are riches,and so do they, if they superabound, hinder the sight of our soul; and blind us that we cannot see to walk in the way of salvation as we ought.