The second parable in this chapter goes to the point that Jesus brought up earlier. That we need to be faithful, doing the things that God has called us to do until he returns.
In this story, Jesus talks about a man who gave money to three different servants to invest. To one, he gave five talents (a talent was a measure of weight for precious metals, usually 58-80 pounds) of silver, to another 2 talents, and to the last servant he gave one. And it says that he gave to them, each according to their ability.
In the same way, God has given us different talents (not money, but abilities) and resources. He does not give them equally to us, but rather according to what we can handle.
And like the story, God requires us to use and invest what he has given us. If we are faithful, doing what he’s asked us to do until he returns, then like the master in the story, he will tell us,
Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness! (21)
In the story, the master said this to two of his servants. But there was a third servant, who instead of investing what his master had entrusted to him, buried it in the ground. And when his master returned, he had nothing to show for what he had been entrusted.
Why? Probably more than anything because he did not honor his master. He saw his master as unfair, as a man who merely leached off the work of others. And he feared that his master would be unfair in judging him were he to try to invest, but instead lose everything.
Many people look at God the same way. They don’t truly honor him. They see him as unfair. They see him as too harsh. They throw all kinds of criticisms his way. And they use these criticisms as an excuse to live for themselves, instead of investing what God gave them and living for him.
This will especially happen in the last days when everything is falling apart. Earthquakes, famines, wars, and plagues. And people, even more than they do now, will throw criticisms God’s way, rather than turning from their sin and serving him.
But when Jesus comes back, they’ll find out that all their criticisms and excuses are empty. They’ll realize that God is completely fair and just, and that it was they who were wrong. It was they who were selfish, wicked, and lazy. And they will be judged for that.
Part of faith is believing that God is good. That though there is evil in this world, it is not God who is evil. That though there is injustice in the world, it is not God who is unjust. Rather it is we who have made a mess of things. But as long as we fail to honor God and criticize him for the mess we made, we will make all kinds of excuses for why we need not be faithful with all he has given us.
How about you? How do you see God? Do you honor him enough to honor him with your life? Do you honor him enough to be faithful and use what he’s given you to make a difference in this world as he has called you to?