Summary: Interpretation & application of the parable. (PowerPoint slides are available on request - email: email@example.com
Rewarding the Faithful
Reading: Luke chapter 19 verses 11-27.
Quote: Hebrews chapter 11 verse 6:
“Without faith it is impossible to please God.’”
“The word ‘Faith’ in the Bible is spelt ‘R.I.S.K.’”
In the parable before us:
• Nine servants were willing to ‘R.I.S.K.’ that is to demonstrate ‘Faith’;
• While sadly one servant was not.
This one servant reminds me of the African impala:
• This creature can jump to a height of over 10 feet;
• And cover a distance of greater than 30 feet.
• Yet these magnificent creatures can be kept in an enclosure in any zoo with a 3-foot wall.
• The animals will not jump if they cannot see where their feet will fall.
• They imprison themselves because they will not exercise ‘Faith’.
• And like this one servant, they take safety as the option but it only imprisons them.
THIS IS A SIMPLE STORY TO UNDERSTAND:
• Verse 12: The man of noble birth who went on a “journey” is Jesus.
• Even a child could work that one out!
• In verse 13 ten servants are mentioned;
• But the story soon focuses on just three of them (vs 16 & 18 & 20).
• The three servants who all receive a ‘mina’ (money) are his true followers;
• As we apply this parable this would be symbolic of all Christians (you & me).
• The story maybe simple;
• But it contains some very important principles that are very applicable for us today!
Seven Principles to Note.
(1). What we have is not ours (Verse 12-13):
“He said: "A man of noble birth went to a distant country to have himself appointed king and then to return. 13So he called ten of his servants and gave them ten minas, ’Put this money to work,’ he said, ’until I come back.’”
In Biblical times it was common for wealthy men to take long journeys:
• Before they would leave,
• They obviously had to put their affairs in order;
• They would arrange for someone to look after domestic matters;
• e.g. Take care of the mail & to feed their pets etc.
• But more than that, they would have to put their business affairs in order;
• So that when they returned they not only still had a business but a prosperous one!
So often the owner would delegate:
• Control and responsibility of their wealth to trustworthy employees.
• These employees were expected to bring a return on what had been handed over to them.
• Now given the uncertainties of transportation in those days:
• The time of the masters return for even a well-planned trip was often open-ended.
• The master would return back at an unexpected time.
• So they needed to be diligent, so as to please him when he showed up!
Now here is the point to note:
• There was no doubt in the minds of these servants;
• That the money still belonged to the master.
• They were the possessors, but not the owners.
• Their job was to manage on the masters behalf, what they were given.
Application for us today is the same:
• We must remember that everything we have has been given to us by the Lord;
• And it is not really ours anyway – we are stewards.
Pearl of great price drama sketch.
• Remember it’s mine but you can wear it for me,
• You can spend it for me etc, etc.
In the normal Christian life, we need to remember that:
• Jesus is the Master and I am the manager.
• Jesus is the benefactor, I am the recipient.
• We must never forget this important truth,
• That everything we have belongs to the Lord;
• Our days are in His hands.
• Our gifts and abilities are on loan from Him.
• Our money is an “advance” from the Almighty.
• Our houses, cars, clothes, and every possession we have doesn’t belong to us.
• It is all his and we are given it to enjoy and to invest.
• For our pleasure, to the benefit of others and most of all for his glory.
(2). We are all given responsibility (vs 13):
“So he called ten of his servants and gave them ten minas, ’Put this money to work,’ he said, ’until I come back.’”
Question: What do we mean by the word “mina”?
• I would Suggest that the ‘mina’ is symbolic;
• It can refer to money, to spiritual gifts, or to opportunities of service that come our way.
• So think beyond money;
• Let the word ‘mina’ be symbolic of all the other things God has given us.