The parable of the dishonest steward, with which the reading begins, is perhaps the most difficult of all the parables of Jesus. How could Jesus suggest to us as an example a man who is clearly dishonest? The answer to this question comes in verse 8, at the conclusion of the parable, when the steward’s master praises him ‘for his astuteness’. We are not called to imitate the man’s dishonesty, demonstrated both before and after his dismissal, but his shrewdness. The steward quickly grasps how desperate his situation is and immediately seeks a solution. Jesus challenges us to do the same.