When something doesn’t work out the way we expect, we ask, “what went wrong?” In the Parable of the Talents from Matthew 25:14–30, we consider what went wrong with the servant who squandered their single talent, and how they could go from being a wicked and slothful server to a good and faithful servant.
In this parable, we find Jesus describing a man going away and leaving his property to be managed by his servants. Jesus tells us that each servant received according to their ability. The first received 5 talents, the second 2 talents, and the third 1 talent. When the master returned, he called the servants and asked for a report of how they managed what his property. The servant with 5 talents, made 5 more talents. The servant with 2 likewise made 2 more talent. But the servant with one talent only manage to bring forward a dusty talent that he hid in the ground. While the first two are welcomed into the joy of their master, the third is kicked out into darkness and despair.
So, what happened? What should the 1-talent servant have done differently?
“He should just own it!”
1)Own the Relationship with the Master
Acknowledge that Jesus is the Master. He is a loving and gracious Savior, but also a just a powerful Master. As servants of the Master, we must acknowledge both aspects of His nature.
To fully experience Jesus, you need to own your relationship with Jesus as Master and Savior.
2) Own the Revelation of the Master
The faithful servant acts on the knowledge of the will of the master.
What is a talent? It’s not ability or skill; it’s a measure of weight. In the New Testament, the talent was the largest named quantity of money, worth about twenty year’s wages. In the context of the parable, Jesus is equating the revelation of God with the talent. What we do with that knowledge is of incredible consequence.
3) Own the Returns for the Master
The faithful servant looks for growth and applies what he has received. The Master holds the servant responsible for what he knows and what he does with the knowledge. What does the Master expect? To grow it and to invest it.
Every person will be responsible for what they did with the amount of revelation they received. We will have to give an account for what we did with Jesus.
Takeaway: What kind of servant are you? Have you owned the treasure of the Gospel that has been deposited in you?