Notes: November 25, 2009

Parable Of The Pounds

Because he was near Jerusalem, and because some thought that the kingdom of God would shortly appear, Jesus told this parable about faithfulness til the end.

Luke 19:11-28

  • A nobleman, 10 servants (3 of which are key to the story), and a citizenry.
  • The nobleman must go away to receive great honor; but he will return.
  • Before he goes, he gives each servant responsibility to conduct business on his behalf. Each servant has the same obligation.
  • In his absence, the citizenry declares its animosity toward the nobleman and its desire to be free from his authority.
  • On his return, he calls his servants to give account of their stewardship, and his dealings with three of them are noted.
  • The first servant’s business has increased the 1 pound to 10 pounds. The second has increased his 1 to 5.
  • But the 3rd, fearing loss and retribution, hid his pound and presents his 1 with, what he thinks, a reasonable explanation for not having any increase.
  • The nobleman is well pleased with the first two servants, and he rewards them with much greater responsibilities.
  • The nobleman is seriously displeased with the third servant, and chides him for not even making a low-risk, low-interest bank deposit. Moreover, the 3rd servant loses his minimal responsibility.
  • As for the rebellious citizenry, they are to be executed.

Meditation Points:

  1. How does this parable answer the question about the immediacy of the Messianic kingdom? The nobleman (Christ) will go away for an unannounced period of time; and then he will, also unannounced, return.
  2. And what should his servants be doing until he returns?  Trade. They must use the time and world that God has given them to increase His kingdom. Perhaps something could be said for each servant having an equal responsibility. Consider what God has given to each of us in equal shares. Time comes to mind first. We each have 24-hour days that disappear like clockwork. Never was there a more level playing field.
  3. He who is faithful in little will be given responsibility over greater things. Will our greater responsibility be in proportion to our faithfulness?
  4. What of the 3rd servant, the one who was afraid to fail? Failing in action is no sin; failing to act is.
  5. And the rebellious citizenry? Do you see the rebellious Jewish leaders here, with they utter contempt for Jesus?