I heard another good sermon recently (I hear lots of those) in which the Parable of the Talents presented in Matthew 25: 14-30 was used for illustration.
A man distributed his wealth to his servants, three of whom are mentioned in the parable. Jesus told a similar parable in Luke 19: 11-17, in which the owner specifically told his servants to put his money to work until he returned. In the Matthew account, this was understood because that’s what two of the servants did and it’s what the owner told the third servant he should have done.
In the sermon, the preacher brought out that the master wasn’t handing out ability, the servants already had that. He was handing out opportunities to serve according to their ability.
God also presents us with opportunities to serve and we’re to make the most of them (Ephesians 5: 15-17). When we do make the most of our God-given opportunities we can enjoy life more because we’re doing what we’ve been designed to do.
God never expects us to do more than we can, but he does expect us to do what we can for his glory. And when we do, he blesses us greatly, maybe even to the point of giving us a legacy (Mark 14: 1-9).
Using our abilities to earn a living will even bring glory to God if that’s the attitude we have about our work (Colossians 3: 17, 23, 24).
The abilities and opportunities are limited time offers and if we don’t use them we will lose them. In Luke 19: 13, the master told his servants he would be back. In John 9: 4 Jesus said a time was coming when no one could work.
If we don’t take advantage of our opportunities in God’s timeframe, he will take them away from us and give them to another. This happened in the parable and that’s what Mordecai told Esther when she had the opportunity to save God’s people from destruction (Esther 4: 12-14).
In still another parable (Matthew 13: 44), Jesus likened his kingdom (his church that includes all the saved — Colossians 1: 13; Matthew 16: 18, 19; 1 Corinthians 15: 22-26) to a treasure that was worth giving our all for (Romans 12: 1, 2). He also said at another time that when we do give, it’ll be returned in a greater measure, likely referring to the recompense of love rather than any material gain (Luke 6: 38; 18: 29, 30).
Are you using your abilities and opportunities to glorify God? Remember, those are limited time offers.
Have you taken advantage of God’s offer for your salvation? Time is running out on that as well (2 Corinthians 6: 1, 2).
While it worked out in the parable that the lazy servant could return his master’s property, what would he have done if someone else had found the buried money and bought the field (Matthew 13: 44)?
Leonard Lauriault is a member of the Church of Christ in Logan. Contact him at: