PARABLES DAY 16 - 23 May 2018

Ben Fourie

“Well done, you good and faithful servant! said his master. ‘You have been faithful in managing small amounts, so I will put you in charge of large amounts. Come on in and share my happiness!‘” Matthew 25:21

Jesus told this parable of the three servants only two days before Passover. It was a very special Passover that would in time be written with a capital letter. A Passover where Jesus himself would be the sacrificial lamb, calling out late that Friday afternoon: “It is finished.” This is the context of this story about a man who left his property in the care of his servants in charge while he undertook a long journey.

Jesus knew very well that before long he would die, be resurrected and forty days later ascend to heaven thereby leaving his followers when he returned to his heavenly dwelling. They needed instructions about what needs to be done after his departure. He is therefore the man going on the long journey and they the servants put in charge of his property until his return. We read in verse 19 that after a long time the master returned.

According to the story the servants enjoyed varying success with their supervision of the master’s property. Two of them invested the money and made a good profit. The third one buried the money and, as can be expected, could not show any profit. He was labeled a “bad and lazy servant” by the master.

It is obvious from the story that God expects us to be busy and hardworking in his Kingdom here on earth, but is it not a bit unfair of God to expect everyone to be able to work for him? Does He not expect too much from some of us? Jesus gave the answer in the story. Verse 15b tells us: “He gave to each one according to his ability.” God does not give us more than we can handle, but enables each one of us to do something. In Paul's first letter to the Corinthians chapter 12:11 we read that the Holy Spirit gives a different gift to each person. as he wishes (the italics are mine) because he knows what we can handle.

Prayer: Lord help me to be a good and faithful servant so that I can also share in the happiness of the Master. Amen

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