By: Pastor Pete Grassow
Matthew 25: 14-19 & 24-29
14 “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who was leaving on a trip. He called his servants and handed his possessions over to them. 15 To one he gave five valuable coins,[a] and to another he gave two, and to another he gave one. He gave to each servant according to that servant’s ability. Then he left on his journey16 “After the man left, the servant who had five valuable coins took them and went to work doing business with them. He gained five more. 17 In the same way, the one who had two valuable coins gained two more. 18 But the servant who had received the one valuable coin dug a hole in the ground and buried his master’s money.. 19 “Now after a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them…. 24 “Now the one who had received one valuable coin came and said, ‘Master, I knew that you are a hard man. You harvest grain where you haven’t sown. You gather crops where you haven’t spread seed. 25 So I was afraid. And I hid my valuable coin in the ground. Here, you have what’s yours.’ 26 “His master replied, ‘You evil and lazy servant! You knew that I harvest grain where I haven’t sown and that I gather crops where I haven’t spread seed? 27 In that case, you should have turned my money over to the bankers so that when I returned, you could give me what belonged to me with interest. 28 Therefore, take from him the valuable coin and give it to the one who has ten coins. 29 Those who have much will receive more, and they will have more than they need. But as for those who don’t have much, even the little bit they have will be taken away from them.
We are in a 6 week Teaching Series that reminds us of the creativity of God. Today’s theme is all about “Risk”. Devotional booklets are available at the information desk.
Text: Much is required from the person to whom much is given; much more is required from the person to whom much more is given. (Luke 12:48)
Intro: Do you like receiving gifts? Did you get your gift at the door (Raise your hands if you did not & an usher will give you one – come to the church office and collect your gift)
Jesus tells a story about gifts: different translations of the Bible use different words – such as coins, or bags of gold - the original word is talanton, which has been translated into the English “Talent” – and which we use today to refer to someone having a talent for something like music, or numbers, or basketball.
Ancient Greek τάλαντον, talanton
Jesus says that talents are given to three different people. These are gifts from the owner: and the first two used their gifts and saw them grow bigger. One did nothing with his gift – and returned it.
The one thing that all three gifts had in common was that the people who received them had done nothing to deserve their gift.
They were called in and given a gift.
So here is my thought for the day: life is like the gift of talents in the story.
We did nothing to deserve our lives – we just showed up and discovered that God had given us this amazing gift of life.
Note one thing about Jesus’ story: the gifts were different –
15 To one he gave five valuable coins,[a] and to another he gave two, and to another he gave one. He gave to each servant according to that servant’s ability.
It is obvious that we are not all given the same lives –
We look at the lives of other people – and it is not long before we spot that they have more than us:
The point is not how much advantage or disadvantage we get in life: it is what we do with what we have.
Remember the text?
Much is required from the person to whom much is given; much more is required from the person to whom much more is given. (Luke 12:48)
There will be a greater accounting for those who have more – so let them get on with their lives – and let me rather focus on my own life.
Because there will come a time when each of us will be called to account for the way we used this gift of life….
Jesus told this parable in the temple: and was challenging the religious people of his day – many of the Scribes and religious teachers in the temple believed that their task was to preserve the faith and protect it from the eyes of the world. Jesus is saying that the life of the faithful is a God-Given gift to the world that should multiply and grow and become a blessing to the world. I do not believe that Jesus has changed his mind – we continue to receive talents from God that are given so that God’s love can be visible in our world.
The question is: are our lives being lived in a God pleasing way or not?
Did you see the really sad moment in the story? The man who did nothing with his talent said this:
“I was afraid. And I hid my talent” (Matthew 25:25)
Fear prevented this man from using his talents.
It would be a pity if all we ended up like this man: saying to God “I did not my life boldly because I was afraid.”
Today’s story reminds us that we have been given this amazing life by God – and it challenges us to get out into the community and multiply the love that God has shown us. I found this quote by Benjamin Franklin: “Hide not your talents. They for use were made: What’s a sundial in the shade?”
You have been given a gift: (At home you can collect your gift at the church office)
You can do whatever you please with it:
How about you think of a way to multiply the gift?
+ Maybe you add something to it and bless someone who is struggling
+ Or you use it to take someone out for coffee and let them offload on you
+ Or you buy a card for someone who needs encouragement
Invite you to become creative – and plan a way to use this gift to spread the love of God:
And collectively as a congregation we can impact the life of our city…
This is the week for us to make a difference to our community!
I dream of the city speaking about the way Brookings First United Methodist Church members are God’s blessing to the community….and passing on that blessing to even more people!
We want to collect the stories – so please send them in to the church office….