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Summary: It is possible for one to consider himself faithful but still not produce any practical fruit for the kingdom of Christ.

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FAITHFUL OR FRUITFUL?

Matt. 25:14-30

INTRO.

Parables defined -- a story used to illustrate a spiritual truth.

Why Jesus used parables -- Matt. 13:10-11

So this parable is to teach us some spiritual truth about the working of the kingdom of heaven. In order to find that truth we must analyze the parable.

1) The Lord went to a far country.

2) He entrusted his goods to his servants.

3) The day of reckoning came and the Lord returned.

4) As the Master acknowledged the servants care of his money we see that two servants received praise and promise while the third servant received exasperation and expulsion.

1. The Lord is Jesus

2. His servants are Christians. (See vs. 14)

3. His goods would be the church, Bible, Holy Spirit, Great Commandment, and Great Commission.

4. The day of reckoning is the Judgment Seat of Christ.

In order to understand the judgment itself we should notice some things about the servants.

1) They were all loyal. (2) They were all honest. (3) They were all FAITHFUL.

You may be thinking, "The last servant was not faithful." YES HE WAS!! He was faithful to ....

...take the money (did not argue or complain)

...protect the money (did he lose it; gamble it away; or allow it to be stolen?)

...show genuine concern over his master’s feelings about the money (He knew of his master’s character and disposition; he knew that the money meant a great deal to the master)

If all this is true about the servant then why was he treated so ill by the master? Because while he was faithful, he was not fruitful.

IT IS POSSIBLE TO BE FAITHFUL AND STILL NOT BE FRUITFUL.

1. (See vs. 27) This is what the master expected the servant to do.

2. (See vs. 30) He is referred to as "unprofitable" not "unfaithful".

Most all of you here today are perfectly faithful you just are not proving to be very profitable to the kingdom of heaven. In other words, you are not fruitful.

A. We are called by Christ to bear fruit.

1. (Jn. 15:6a) -- God wants to see lasting fruit come from our ministries and our lives.

2. Notice the 3 classifications of fruitful believers mentioned here.

a. (Vs. 2) "bearing fruit"

b. (Vs. 2) "more fruit" -- (ill.) - (Matt. 4:18-29) Jesus called Peter to come fish for men. Peter was already saved and baptized but Jesus had a particular ministry in mind for him.

c. (Vs. 5) "much fruit" -- (ill.) - (Lk. 22:31-32) "When you are converted, strengthen the brethren {minister to others so that they may profit from you}

3. This is how we glorify God. (Vs. 8) {Did you notice who was not mentioned? The unfruitful were not mentioned. This is because there are to be no unfruitful Christians.}

a. This is important because as children of God we each have a ministry to carry out. "Minister" = serve.

b. Christ has left us with some very valuable and useful possessions. We are to use these to serve Him and others and thus be profitable to the kingdom of heaven.

c. James 2:14-20

1. (ill.) - It was Abraham’s faith that motivated him, but it was his works that proved him righteous.

2. (ill.) - Rahab believed and her belief was reflected in her works.


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