BECK index / Contents / Index to Gospel Passages


69. Parable of the Talents.

Jesus came to Zacchaeus even though he was wealthy, because he was doing everything he thought right in helping others, and he really demonstrated his intention to see Jesus by climbing the tree. He was an outcaste to the Jews, because he collected taxes for the Romans; but Jesus affirmed that he too was a son of Abraham, and the Christ comes to those who would be saved. Seeing that this man was using his position in society and his abilities to help others, Jesus told the parable of the abilities (talents) given to people by God.

When the Christ (lord) went away to receive the sovereignty to bring it to people, some of the people rebelled against him. Those who used their abilities increased them in the process, while the man who felt inferior and afraid hid even the little ability he had, therefore losing it. Those who use their abilities to the utmost discover new and greater capabilities and the opportunities to learn and grow. Thus when the Christ returns to manifest the sovereignty these people will naturally be the ones who people will trust to be in charge of great undertakings. The lazy servant who hid his talent must start from scratch. "Use it or lose it," and those who give of themselves expand and are given more to work with. However, those who have rebelled against the way of God have separated and destroyed their contact with the source of life.

There is also another interpretation of this parable. Jesus does not say this is a parable of the sovereignty of God but told it for those who were expecting the sovereignty to appear immediately. It can be argued that this lord is not a kind person: he is hated by the citizens who don't want him to be king over them; he rewards those with much by giving them more, while taking away what little the poor have; and finally he brutally orders the execution of those who merely did not want to be under his tyranny.

This second interpretation holds that this is rather a parable of this world with its economic and political injustices and oppression. Thus people should be careful not to establish this kind of sovereignty here in this world.

Harmony 69 * Synthesis 69
70. Jesus Enters Jerusalem on a Colt Harmony 70 * Synthesis 70 * Interpretation 70