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FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
 

FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL

ON SERVANT LEADERSHIP
(Part 137)

USING TALENTS – 2


September 2, 2017
Today’s reading: Matthew 25:14-30


Today we learn a number of important truths about our Master and corresponding principles for servant leaders. They are so important as to determine our eternal fate. So listen well.

First, what Jesus has done in calling us is this: he “called in his servants and entrusted his possessions to them.” (v.14b). Imagine that. We sinful human beings are being entrusted with divine work, the very important work of caring for God’s people and helping bring them to salvation. We must take our task seriously. We must be willing to give our all.

Second, Jesus equips those whom he calls. He gives gifts that they can use. “To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one” (v.15a). Such gifts are given “to each according to his ability.” (v.15b). Whom the Master calls, he equips. Our value is not in what gifts we have, but in how we use whatever gifts we have. Everyone has a valuable contribution to make.

Third, Jesus has gone “on a journey” (v.14a), that is, back to heaven, but will return. It has now been almost two millennia since he ascended into heaven. “After a long time the master of those servants came back and settled accounts with them.” (v.19). Jesus indeed will return. We are already in the end times. Shall our Master find us not about his work? There is much to be done, and we must be about doing our work.

Fourth, Jesus is “a demanding person” (v.24b), that is, he expects his servants to serve him well. Why? Because the stakes are too high. The very salvation of souls is at stake. He is about “harvesting where (he) did not plant and gathering where (he) did not scatter” (v.24c). Jesus precisely has entrusted his work to us, has equipped us, and expects us to perform. Jesus expects results, no matter how meager. “Should you not then have put my money in the bank so that I could have got it back with interest on my return?” (v.27). The fruit is up to God, but the decision to do work is entirely ours.

Fifth, there will be hell to pay (pun intended) if we fail to make use of our talents. “And throw this useless servant into the darkness outside, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.” (v.30). And why not? Jesus went to extremes to win salvation for all. Now he entrusts the continuation of that work to his servants. If they do not perform, then Jesus’ own work would not have accomplished his purpose.

Make your choice then. To be considered useless and thrown away, or to hear those wonderful words of our Master: “Well done, my good and faithful servant. … Come, share your master’s joy.” (v.21/23).

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