Tidings for Tuesday

For the kingdom of Heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants and delivered unto them his goods. Matthew 25:14

What did the man give to his servants? Some commentaries say the talents the man issued were gifts, and serve to remind us today of the gifts of the Holy Spirit that are given to Christians. The meaning of the words used in this portion indicates otherwise. Our text says he delivered unto them his goods, not his gifts. Matthew tells us he gave them talents, but the talents were not abilities, as we use the word today. A talent was a unit of measurement, and was often used for precious commodities such as gold and silver. For example, a talent of silver was worth about 6,000 days’ wages for a Roman soldier. If this man gave his servants talents of silver, he gave them sizable amounts of goods indeed! They had plenty to work with when it came to investing and doing business. This reminds us that God has generously given us Christians everything we need to do business for Him.

Where did the goods come from? In our parable, they came from the man’s wealth. He determined what each servant could handle, and handed that amount over to the servant. In the case of God, He has given to each of us plentifully. While we regularly thank Him for our daily bread, He also gives to us our earning capabilities and the possessions that we obtain. Look around and see all that you have, and know that these things are the goods that God has placed into your care. Know too that He Who gave these to you will require an accounting of what you have done with these goods.

The hymn writer James G. Small has well said ‘Naught that I have mine own I call, I’ll hold it for the Giver’. Although you and I are born with natural man’s grasping and hoarding instincts, God has given to us a new incentive, to devote our goods to His great cause, to invest in His great commission. We know the parable, how those who invested their talents received abundantly in reward. God will not short us if we use that which He has given us for Him. In fact, since earth’s goods are temporal, investing for God is the only way to have permanent gain.

God has been very kind to give us so much in the way of goods. He is also being very kind in enabling us to use our goods for His work and for His people. -Jim MacIntosh

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