“Investing in God; Risking for God”
Tezenlo Thong, Pastor
Simpson United Methodist Church
Last Sunday’s parable talks about oil. This Sunday’s parable is about investment. That sounds very modern. I means very capitalistic. Was Jesus talking about capitalism? Could he have known the subprime mortgage crisis? Did he foresee the coming income disparity between the rich and the poor? Jesus couldn’t possibly be talking about investment in the modern sense of capitalism.
Some scholars suggest that the English word talent came from this parable. The word talent in English means a marked innate ability to do something. It means an ability of superior quality. America’s Got Talent or American Idol probably comes to mind. If talent here meant an extraordinary ability, most of us could easily find an excuse for not investing, for most of us are not gifted in this sense. In Greek, talent simply means scale or balance referring to a measurement of weight. It is not a reference to abilities.
God has endowed us. The “master” has given each of the servants a trust. The talents were given as a trust. The talent or wealth belonged to the master, not the servants. It was given to invest and bear fruit. Someone said, “Jesus saves; we invest.” Do we invest our life, time and resources for God? Do we work with the resources that God has given us?
The last servant was fearful of risk-taking. He was afraid of losing the money. Investment always involves risks. Love involves risk. Generosity has the risk of deception and betrayal. Hospitality invites risks and involves vulnerability. Still, we are called for prudent risk-taking. Otherwise, we could gradually slip into irrelevance and slow demise.