Jump Start # 2866
Matthew 25:21 “His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’”
Our passage comes from the parable of the talents. Talents as used in this passage was not ability, but a form of money, a lot of money. Five talents was equivalent to 100 years of income. The master had extreme wealth and he also had extreme trust to put this in the hands of his servants. What a temptation to take the money and run. The master left. He was gone for a long time. At his return, there was an accounting. The books were opened, we might say. This parable is emphasizing the return of Jesus. He’s gone now. But He’s coming. And, this season we are in now, is the time for the servants, you and I, to be busy for our Master.
There are some thoughts that we ought to learn from our passage:
First, our impression of God shapes our relationship with Him. The one talent man had the wrong ideas about his master. He viewed him as hard man, yet had he forgotten what the Master had put in his charge? The master was generous. The master was trusting. The master was good.
If we view God as one who can never be pleased, then we will feel overwhelmed. God will seem like a drill sergeant or a coach who is always demanding more out of us. More laps. More pushups. More. More. More. Spiritually, more worship services. More prayers. More passages to read. More. More. More. And, before long, we find ourselves doing things not out of joy and love, but because we have to. We feel that God is always wanting more.
If we are afraid of God, then we will not get close to Him. We will keep things at arms length. We will try to hide things and not be honest with the Lord. Confession becomes generic, empty and worthless.
If we believe that God doesn’t care, then we likely won’t care either. And, when a person quits trying, the worse happens. We get sloppy and careless in our walk with the Lord. We cut corners. We bend the rules. We just are not serious. God doesn’t care, so why should we?
All of these thoughts surround our impression of God. The wrong impression leads to the wrong outcomes.
Second, our passage shows us that it is possible to please God. The master honored the five and two talent men. He praised them. He put them in charge of more things. They have shown that were dependable, trustworthy and honest. They did what the master was hoping.
God can be pleased with our worship. God can be pleased with our fellowship. God can be pleased with our hearts. Well done, spoken by the One who did all things perfectly. Good, spoken by the One who was the definition of good. Faithful, spoken by the One who was obedient in all things, even to death. Those three compliments, well done, good, faithful, are lived in the life of Jesus. He was those things. And, by obeying the master, the servants took on similar characteristics. Likewise, we do the same. As we walk with the Lord, we too, take on the characteristics of Jesus. Perfect? No. Sinless? No. Miracle worker? No. But faithful. Good. Well done. Absolutely.
The master was joyous with what the five talent man had done. God can be pleased with your walk, your efforts and your faith in Him. I feel that we beat ourselves up too much, piling on guilt after guilt, because we could have done this, and we could have done that. And, all we see are the failures. The master in this parable didn’t say, ten talents are nice, but fifteen would have been better. Not at all. He was pleased, joyous and complimentary of what had taken place.
How do you feel about your walk with the Lord? Are you happy? Or, do all you see is what you could be doing? Be faithful. Be good. Be busy. Enjoy the smile you put upon the Master’s face.
Smiles are that way. When one is smiling at you, it’s hard not to smile back. I have a staring contest with one of my granddaughters. We will look face to face, our noses almost touching each other, until one breaks into a smile. It usually only takes a few seconds. They are so happy and smiling that they can’t keep a straight face.
Imagine God smiling at you. Well done. You are good. You are faithful. I think it’s time we smiled back at the Lord and simply say, “Thank You.”