Luke 16:9 And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by means of unrighteous mammon, so that when it fails they may receive you into the eternal habitations.

The word for today is catechism, a catechism is a series of questions and answers written for instruction – Luther’s Small Catechism is one example of this type of writing, here is another:

What is the Bible? The Bible is not a code book of secret messages, it is not a rule book to show you how to get what you want – but the Bible is the story of God bringing salvation to mankind.

Who is God? God is not Santa Claus, someone you go to with a list of what you want. God is not Superman, someone to rescue you in emergencies, but who can be ignored when he is not needed. God is the creator of all things, God is the redeemer for all mankind, God is the one who brings us to faith, God is eternal, God is faithful, God is merciful, and God is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

What does God want? While God wants many things, the most important thing to know, is that God wants all mankind to be saved.

What will God do to get what he wants? God will do whatever it takes, God will sacrifice everything – and that’s exactly what Jesus did, he sacrificed everything in order to win salvation for all mankind. Jesus emptied himself of divine majesty, diving honor, and divine power, and became man, subject to the law, and obedient – even unto death, even death on a cross, so that hi might bring to us the grace and mercy of God through the forgiveness of sins, and through such forgiveness to bring to us the peace of God which passes all understanding.

What is all this to us? Well, that really depends – there are some people who think they can save themselves, that they are righteous because of what they have done, and they imagine that God owes them something for all this. Since they cannot see that they too are sinners, they cannot see that they need a savior. For them the text has these words, no one can serve 2 masters – for they must see their sin before they see they need for salvation.

There is another group, those who know they are sinners, those who know they cannot save themselves – they see the price that God paid to bring to them the forgiveness of sins, they know the love of God which is ours in Jesus Christ. As they give thanks to God for all his gifts, they see in this text wisdom to guide them in the use of what they have – for if God would sacrifice everything in order to bring the forgiveness of sins to sinners, then perhaps we can use what God has given us more wisely, using it to do what we can, to bring the message of salvation to those who are perishing.