Investing What God Has Given
Thursday, December 15th, 2016
“As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” 1 Pet 4:10
Believers in the Righteousness of God that constitutes Jesus’ baptism, death and resurrection are bestowed special abilities.
God expects us to be faithful and responsible in investing them.
It is possible to get so got up in trying to identify what our spiritual gifts are and not focus on servant hood.
I want to draw your attention to Matt 25:14-30. The context of this parable is set when Jesus was answering the disciples on His Second Coming in Matt 24:3. Jesus warns them to be on guard and challenges them in Matt 24:44 to be ready because the Son of Man will come at an hour when He is least expected. In Matt 25, Jesus concludes by speaking on the separation of the sheep and the goats. Sandwiched in between is the ‘parable of the talents’.
As we walk through this powerful passage, we can derive 7 keys relating to gifting which is our focus for the month of November.
1.What We Have Is Not Ours vs 14
The master entrusted his trustworthy servants the control and multiplication of his wealth. The servants were expected to bring a return on what had been given to them. There is no doubt in the minds of these servants that the wealth still belong to the master. They were the possessors but not the owners. Their job was to manage what they were given. Ps 24:1; Haggai 2:8
2. We Are Given What We Can Handle vs 15
The master gave talents to the servants according to their abilities before going on a journey. The servants are to discover, develop and deploy their given talents. Our responsibility is tied to our ability. Each has been assigned to a task and are expected to be faithful to what God has given. We have what we have because God gave it to us. God expects us to manage his talents within the boundaries of our abilities. 1 Cor 3:5; 1 Cor 12:1-11
3. We Must Invest What We Have Been Given vs 16
The servants who received 5 and 2 talents immediately went to work on their investment strategy and doubled their master’s portfolio. However, the servant given 1 talent had a different approach. He went off, dug a hole and hid his master’s money. He buried his blessing because of his lackadaisical attitude. Our potential is God’s gift to us. What we do with it is our gift to God.
4. A Day Of Accountability Is Coming vs 19.
We will be audited by the Almighty. We have to give an account on how we have used what we have been given. There will be a day of reckoning. While most of us believe this in our head, we don’t always live with eternity in our hearts. If we would think more about Jesus’ return, we will be more focused on making an eternal return of our investments. Rom 14:12; 1 John 2:28
5. Investing What We Have Reveals Our View Of God vs 20-25
The servants with 5 and 2 talents were excited to show their master what they have done when he returned. The master is thrilled with both of them because they demonstrated responsibility for their ability. The master increased their resources after they have proven themselves faithful. The servant with 1 talent had a wrong attitude and a skewed view of his master. Our preconceived notions prevent us from seeing God as a God of grace. Not serving will lead us to bury our blessings.
6. What We Have We Must Use Or We Will Lose vs 26
The master saw right through the flimsy excuses of the servant who buried the talent. The master rebuked the servant with strong words and pronounced him wicked and lazy. God will judge not merely for doing wrong but also for not doing right. Wickedness and laziness partnered together keep many from full surrender and service. Prov 6:9; Prov 10:5; Heb 6:11-12
7. Who You Know And What You Do Will Lead To Either Abundance Or Agony In The Next Life vs 29
Those who are faithful with little things will have an abundance. A fully surrendered and selfless life is given more opportunities. In contrary, those who bury their blessings will face agony. A lack of serving indicates one has never been truly converted by faith in the Righteousness of God. Jesus referred to them as ‘worthless.’
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