OUR CORE BIBLICAL TEXT
God’s kingdom is like this:
Once there was a great and good king whom all the people respected and hoped to please. One day the king told them that he would be going away for a while and that he had chosen three of his people to look after things for him whilst he was gone.
He explained that he would be giving each of them a certain amount of talents to use wisely. He wanted them to be able to return to him all that he gave and more by the time he returned home. The first person chosen was given 5 special talents and was advised to work hard and choose wisely in order to make the talents grow into more. The second was given 3 special talents and was advised to work hard and choose wisely in order to make them grow into more. The third person was given 1 extra special talent and was advised to work hard and choose wisely to make it grow into more.
All of the talents were needed to make the kingdom great.
Years later, when the king returned home, he called the people with the talents to give an account of what they had done to grow their precious gifts.
The first person had worked hard, aimed high, acted bravely, practised and persevered and had doubled his 5 talents to 10. The king was very pleased with his effort and wisdom.
The second person had worked hard, aimed high, acted bravely, practised and persevered and had doubled her 3 talents to 6. The king was very pleased with her efforts and wisdom.
The third person had been nervous and afraid of failing. He had worried that he might make mistakes and not be able to grow his talent, so he had buried it in the ground so that it couldn’t be lost, stolen or damaged. He dug up the one precious talent that he had been given and gave it back to the king all covered in dust and dirt and disappointment.
The king was heartbroken. The precious gift had been wasted and there was no joy to share with the rest of the kingdom.
“I gave you a talent that I had chosen especially for you. It was so precious and important and I knew the wonders that you could do with it. I gave you only one so that you could give it your fullest attention and make it flourish into something glorious and beautiful and yet you buried it in the ground, hidden away in the dirt, stifled and unable to grow. I trusted that you would have the courage and commitment to work hard and choose wisely so that everyone could share in the greatness of your talent. You have not been a very good steward of the gift that you were given and everyone will suffer its loss.”
The man felt sad and foolish. For the rest of his life he regretted that he had not found the courage to embrace his talent, to work hard with it and to choose wisely. How different things would have surely been if he had only used the talent that he was given.
Matthew 25: 14 – 30