Understanding the 'ten talents'


  Posted by L. Mertes on Thursday, June 5 4:47 pm

The Bible is its own interpreter. Rightly divide the word by taking proper consideration of other scriptures that provide the total picture of its true meaning. Maybe the key to the passage is found in verse 29:

"For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an
abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will will be taken from him."

Jesus used these very same words in the parable of the sower in Matthew 13:12. And we know from that parable that the seed sown is the WORD OF GOD, the MESSAGE ABOUT THE KINGDOM (verses 18-23). Is the 'seed sown' and the 'talent entrusted' the same thing? I think so.
Both parables are about bringing increase to the knowledge of God in your life by acting on it--putting it to work. In fact we have an obligation to do so. Do other scriptures refer to knowledge being like money or something of value being given to us?

"What you HEARD from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching, with faith and love in Christ Jesus. Gaurd the good DEPOSIT that was ENTRUSTED TO YOU..."
(2 Timothy 1:13,14).

"...that they may have the full RICHES of complete UNDERSTANDING (knowledge), in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely Christ, in whom are hidden all the TREASURES of wisdom and KNOWLEDGE" (Colossians 2:2, 3).

How would you bring increase to an amount of money entrusted to you?--put it to work--do something with it. Keeping it hidden in an old mattress won't bring any increase and your master will be disappointed with you. The very LEAST you could do is entrust it to someone else, like a bank, who would then put it to work and bring increase to it. They get the increase and you receive a pittance. The greatest return is realized when YOU put it to work (open a business, etc...). It's the same with the kingdom of God. There is a big difference between living out the will of God and sharing that knowledge with someone else.

Anyone who does not act on and retain the word of God--like hiding a talent in the ground or having the ravens snatch the seed away--will lose that knowledge and its eternal benefit, condemning themselves to the wrath of the one who gave it.

"...since they did not think it worthwhile to RETAIN the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind...(Romans 1:21, 28). "...darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance (lack of knowledge) that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts" (Eph. 4:18).

"That servant who knows his master's will and DOES NOT GET READY or DOES NOT DO what his master wants will be beaten with many blows...From everyone who has been given much, much will be damanded; and from the one who has been
entrusted much, much more will be asked". (Luke 12:47,48b)

All the rewards and benefits of good stewardship will go to the faithful:

"...do not throw away your confidence; it will be RICHLY REWARDED. You need to persevere so that when you have DONE THE WILL OF GOD, you will receive what he has promised" (Heb. 10:35, 36).

What are you going to do with the word of God?--discard it, or use it wisely by acting on it, bringing increase to it. It's a matter of turning a seed of knowledge into the visible, ripe fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22,23) or putting the riches of God's truth to work insuring your future, eternal security. You decide.

"Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent, and humbly ACCEPT THE WORD PLANTED IN YOU, which can save you. Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. DO WHAT IT SAYS." (James 1:22).

"Not everyone who says to me 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but ONLY HE WHO DOES THE WILL OF MY FATHER who is in heaven...Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and PUTS THEM INTO PRACTICE is like a wise man who built his house on the rock...But everyone who hears these words of mine and DOES NOT PUT THEM INTO PRACTICE is like a foolish man who built his house on sand"
(Matt. 7:21, 24, 26).

What are YOU doing with the knowledge of God's will? Will you bury it, or act on it? Which one will bring praise from God on 'that day'?

"..find out what pleases the Lord...do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord's will is" (Eph. 5:10, 17)

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