Summary: Message regarding what we should be doing until Jesus returns, should He do so during our lifetimes.
There’s Work to Be Done Before He Returns!
May 10, 2009
NOTE: THE ME/WE/GOD/YOU/WE FORMAT IS FROM ANDY STANLEY’S BOOK, "COMMUNICATION FOR A CHANGE."
Me: There were a number of times in my working career when my boss would be away, and I’d be put in charge.
Some of these times were stressful. Other times were great. But in almost every case, I was glad to have the boss back.
And I was always hopeful that my boss would recognize a job well done, and maybe say something about it.
Not necessarily because I needed my ego stroked, but because I wanted to know that what I was doing was making a positive difference for that particular business.
We: Probably all of us know the feeling of wanting to be recognized for a job well done.
It might be from a boss, a parent, a co-worker, a sibling, or even your own children.
And a lot of people never get that.
They struggle, they work, they labor, oftentimes doing things they hate just hoping that someone around them, especially someone in authority over them will give them the slightest word of praise.
And when they get it, if they get it, they cherish it because they know they might never get another one.
In out Scripture passage for today, Jesus tells us a way for us to get some high praise from the One who really counts – our Heavenly Master.
And it comes as we take care of the business the Master has for us.
God: Matthew 25:14-30 –
14 "Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. 15 To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. 16 The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. 17 So also, the one with the two talents gained two more. 18 But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.
19 "After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20 The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. ’Master,’ he said, ’you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.’
21 "His master replied, ’Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
22 "The man with the two talents also came. ’Master,’ he said, ’you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.’
23 "His master replied, ’Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
24 "Then the man who had received the one talent came. ’Master,’ he said, ’I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’
26 "His master replied, ’You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27 Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.
28 "’Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. 29 For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. 30 And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
I said a few weeks ago that if I had to summarize chapters 24 and 25 in one sentence, it would be “Be ready and be wise.”
The first parables in this section emphasized the “be ready” part, and this one puts more emphasis on the “be wise” part.
The other parables stressed that Jesus could come at any moment, while this parable stresses that He might be a long time in coming.
It’s natural for pastors to take time on each of these servants, but really I want to focus mainly on the last two servants.
The first servant was obviously incredibly capable and trustworthy, and he performs just as he is expected to, which is incredible.
But if I had to pick a favorite, it would be the second servant, described in verses 17, 22-23.