Lessons Of A Lifetime

A Parable Of Talents
Or
Account Settling Time Has Come
Sunday Dec. 4, 2022

Scripture To Consider:
“For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey.”

“Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and his lord’s money.”

“After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them. So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.’ His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’”

“He also who received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two talents besides them.’ His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’”

“Then he who received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not scattered seed. And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’ But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest.”

“Therefore take the talent from him and give it to him who has ten talents. For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the unprofitable servant into outer darkness, there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”  Matthew 25.14-30

Something To Consider:
A talent was a certain weight of money in silver, gold, or copper in the time of Jesus. Though the use or misuse of money is an indicator of a person’s spiritual maturity, the term talent used in our text is a most interesting term today, and has a different and broader meaning.

To most people today a talent is a gift or ability. Paul wrote in Romans 12.6, “Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them; if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering.”

Paul continued in verse 7, by declaring; “He who teaches [let him use it] in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation, he who gives, with liberality; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.” Where do we stand as it pertains to the spiritual gifts of God? Are we aware of what spiritual gift God has bestowed upon us? And if so, are we exercising that spiritual gift to benefit others?

Something Else To Consider:
Some may question our considering the word talent as gifts or abilities as mentioned above. Some might believe our broadening of the biblical word, talent, to include gifts and abilities is too far of a stretch of the Word of God. And yet, Jesus on several occasions broadened the meaning of the understanding of biblical truth.

On one occasion Jesus broadened the understanding of murder to include a person hating his neighbor, brother, or sister. On another occasion Jesus broadened our understanding of adultery to include a man looking on a woman with lustful thoughts in his heart. Would it be that far of a stretch to consider the word talent to then include spiritual and physical gifts and abilities?

As believers in Jesus Christ, our gifts, talents, and or abilities are to be used for serving God. Usually, that is played out by our serving God’s people. Proverbs 3.27 states; “Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do so.”

The writer of Hebrews, in speaking of the peril of not progressing spiritually, professed in Hebrews 6.10-11; “For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end.” The writer of Hebrews believed in our enduring to the end! How about us?

Something More To Consider:
According to Jesus, a person not using their God-given gifts, talents, and or abilities to serve God, may have some serious consequences to consider. For there is a day of reckoning approaching on the not so far horizon. There is a time of settling accounts that is coming soon. Let us be ready! Let us be spiritually prepared!

According to the apostle Peter, and his writing of our serving for God’s glory in 1 Peter chapter 4, beginning in verse 7; “But the end of all things is at hand; therefore, be serious and watchful in your prayers.” Can it be said that we as true believers in Jesus, are being serious in our watching for the second coming of Christ? And if not, why not?

Peter continued in verse 8, by stating; “And above all things have fervent love for one another, for love will cover a multitude of sins. Be hospitable to one another without grumbling. As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.”

Peter, in closing declared; “If anyone speaks, let him speak of the oracles [Word] of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.”

Now, if we are looking for the second coming of Jesus in the not-so-distant future, are we looking for the first coming of other biblically revealed end time events as well? Are we therefore, aware that the Word of God declares the coming first of the son of perdition, or Antichrist, before the coming of Jesus Christ and His gathering the saints to Himself as described in that very sequence in 2 Thessalonians chapter 2?

According to 2 Thessalonians, Paul writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit proclaimed beginning in verse 1, “Now brethren, concerning the coming [the second coming] of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering [the rapture] together to Him [to Christ], we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, [or by false prophets of this 21st century generation], as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come.”

And in verse 3 of 2 Thessalonians chapter 2, Paul further revealed, “Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day [the day of the Lord’s second coming and His gathering the saints unto Himself] for that Day will not come unless the falling away [the great apostasy of many one-time believers] comes first [before the second coming and the so-called rapture], and the man of sin [Antichrist] is revealed, the son of perdition.”

A Few Final Words:
Do we fully understand the biblically accurate sequence of end time events when considering our being watchful? And at that time, when the eternal accounts are finally settled, will, “Well done, good and faithful servant…” be the words we want to hear from the lips of Jesus. Therefore, what are we faithfully doing with the talents or spiritual gifts God has given us in order to make that a reality? Time is running out!

Just look at the society that surrounds us, look at the abounding lawlessness that Jesus spoke of as a sign of the end times. We are nearing the end of all things! Therefore, will we hear Jesus proclaim, “Well done good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your Lord.” Now is the time to rethink our relationship with Christ and how we are using the talents, gifts, and abilities we have been granted by God!

Prayer:
Our Father in heaven, help us not to misunderstand the truth of Your Word as it pertains to spiritual gifts, talents, and abilities. Teach us to be personally responsible with what You have given us. Help us not to misunderstand the sequence of end time events as taught and proclaimed falsely as truth by end time false prophets. May we heed the warning of Jesus as it pertains to end time events. In Him Always, Amen!

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