Are you a “one talent” person?
We all know the parable of the Talents from Matthew 25: 14-30. In case you don’t remember it, here it is;
“For it is just like a man about to go on a journey, who called his own slaves and entrusted his possessions to them. To one he gave five talents, to another, two, and to another, one, each according to his own ability; and he went on his journey. Immediately the one who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and gained five more talents. In the same manner the one who had received the two talents gained two more. But he who received the one talent went away, and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.
“Now after a long time the master of those slaves came and settled accounts with them. The one who had received the five talents came up and brought five more talents, saying, ‘Master, you entrusted five talents to me. See, I have gained five more talents.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’
“Also the one who had received the two talents came up and said, ‘Master, you entrusted two talents to me. See, I have gained two more talents.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’
“And the one also who had received the one talent came up and said, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow and gathering where you scattered no seed. And I was afraid, and went away and hid your talent in the ground. See, you have what is yours.’
“But his master answered and said to him, ‘You wicked, lazy slave, you knew that I reap where I did not sow and gather where I scattered no seed. Then you ought to have put my money [in the bank, and on my arrival I would have received my money back with interest. Therefore take away the talent from him, and give it to the one who has the ten talents.’
“For to everyone who has, more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but from the one who does not have, even what he does have shall be taken away. Throw out the worthless slave into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Many sermons have been preached on this passage, and many books have been written about it. If you’re looking for answers to the many questions this parable raises (especially since something is very obviously being lost in translation from Aramaic, which is the language Jesus was speaking when He originally gave this parable, into modern English) than I suggest you go get one or more of those books and do a search for the recordings of some of those sermons. I’m not going to address any of the deep theological questions here.
What I’m going to do instead is to simply urge you, dear reader, to zero in on one of the many lessons that this parable teaches us. That lesson, in crude language, is that God gave EVERYONE at least one talent that He wants and expects us to use in the service of His Kingdom. To refuse and/or fail to do so is disobedience and rebellion and as the conclusion of the parable indicates that can have very serious eternal consequences. I know I said I wasn’t going to get into theology here but I’m not sure how else that last part can be interpreted.
So I’m urging whoever might be reading this, if you’re not doing so already, sit down with your pastor or some other spiritual mentor whose judgement and discernment you trust and figure out what talent (or talents) God has given you. Once you’ve got that figured out, keep talking (and praying) about it until you’ve figured out a plan to use that talent(s) to serve the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.
Brothers and sisters, time is short. Persecution is increasing and the fields are CRYING OUT for workers to come bring in the harvest. If you can’t help bring in the harvest yourself, help someone who is working to bring it in. It can be as simple as faithfully attending and tithing to your local congregation and praying for your own pastor and his team. Or it can be as complicated as quitting your day job and becoming a full-time evangelist, if that’s what you feel called to do.
But whatever you do, stir up that talent (or talents) God gave you and GET MOVING!
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Aaron is a member of Jerusalem Assembly, House of Redemption.