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Bible Pathways - October 11, 2005

October 11


Read Matthew 26

In Today's Reading:

Parables; plot to kill Jesus; Jesus anointed; Lord's Supper; Jesus' agony and prayer; Judas' betrayal; Jesus' trial; Peter's denial

Jesus presented Himself in a parable by saying: The Kingdom of Heaven is as a man traveling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods. And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several (own) ability; and straightway took his journey (Matthew 25:14-15). These talents did not belong to the servants but remained the property of their master They were to be managers (stewards) of the goods entrusted to them. The goods of this parable represent the opportunities and God-given abilities that He expects us to use to develop His Kingdom.

The servant who received five talents (a very large amount of money), recognized that what he had received belonged to his master. Upon his lord's return he said: Lord, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them five talents more (25:20).

And likewise he that had received two, he also gained other two (25:17). He was not expected to gain five since he had been given according to his own ability. Both faithfully doubled their talents (money) and both were equally commended.

The third servant who had received one talent put forth no effort for his master. Instead, he went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord's (master's) money (25:18). His attempt to "bury" his opportunities to serve his master was inexcusable, like some today who say they are Christians — even prominent members of the Church, but then say: "I'm too busy now to teach a class or assume other responsibilities. I'll serve the Lord at some more convenient time or after I retire." Yet, they show great diligence working in the secular world

In our Lord's parable, the consequences of neglecting the opportunities by the unprofitable servant to serve his master were irreversible; there was no second chance to relive his life. The master declared: Cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 25:30; compare 8:12; 22:13; 24:51). He was actually a servant in name only.

We can choose to ignore our opportunities to serve the Lord, but, without an exception, every one of us shall give account of himself to God (Romans 14:12). Know ye not that your body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit . . . and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's (I Corinthians 6:19-20).

Word Studies:

25:27 exchangers = moneylenders; 25:27 usury = interest on money lent; 26:15 covenanted = agreed on; 26:47 staves = clubs; 26:63 I adjure thee = I charge you under oath before God.

Cross References:

For Matthew 26:31: See Zechariah 13:7. Matthew 26:64: See Psalm 110:1; Daniel 7:13.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for The English International Shortwave Radio Broadcast sponsored by Mrs. John E. Collett and Mary Richardson; The Arabic International Shortwave Radio Broadcast sponsored by Imler & Ann Wharton · Staff: Mary Kay Wagner · Government Officials: Rep. Jim Davis (FL), Rep. Bob Inglis (SC), Rep. Sam Johnson (TX), and Sen. Patty Murray (WA) · Country: Seychelles (79,000) a group of islands in the Indian Ocean between Madagascar and India · Major languages: English and French · Religious freedom · 89% Roman Catholic; 8% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Seek God in prayer continually and depend on His strength (I Chronicles 16:11).

Memory Verse for the Week: Hebrews 3:12

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