So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown
and gather where I have not scattered seed?
Well then you should have put my money on
deposit with the bankers, so that when I
returned I would have received it back with interest.
I was asked the question about the response of the Master to Servant number 1,
whom he called Wicked and Lazy. It was pointed out, and is noted, that the Master was aware of the ability of each Servant, thus He distributed the talents according to what they could handle.
He had the Resources, Ability and Capacity to Produce!
And this is why the Master is so angry! See, He distributed the wealth to them according to their ability! Thus the servant was capable of handling the 1 talent. The Master had watched him, and assessed his current state, and determined that he would be productive and effective with 1 talent to manage.
He called Him lazy and wicked because He wasted his ability!
If he was incapable and had shown no ability, the Master wouldn’t have given him the one to manage. I think we make the mistake in this passage and in life of viewing the amount of talent given as a rating system. We look at the man that has been given 5 talents of resources, and value his ability above those who have been given less. This is not God’s perspective. To God, they were all viewed as servants. As servants they had different abilities, and the Masters desire and praise would be distributed to all equally (as seen with his response towards the man that had 5 talents and 2 talents). He was pleased with productivity, no just the volume produced.
The Master is no respecter of person!
The Master didn’t distribute the talents according to His love or respect level for the servants, but according to the ability given to them and the management skills displayed by them. He addressed them all equally, and responded them equally as seen in the interaction between 5 and 2 (although it is to be noted that the 1 talent taken was given to the one with 5). He was pleased with them both, and gave them equal access to enjoy His happiness, and also the promise that their productivity would insure them opportunities to lead and manage in the future.
Wasted Potential and and Productivity
God not only had a desire for the man to be productive, but for his resources to be productive! Illustrated in the cursing of the fig tree, God’s creation is designed to produce not just for itself, but for all that come after it. Even if man had no ambition and desires for himself, God, who creates for others and provides for others, made man to follow the example He set.
God is not just a Creator and Sustainer; He is a Developer and Producer!
God creates a lifeline! He produces things that produce. His creation is not only a seed, but is seed bearing. God made us creative, just like Him.
We are able to think and reason; not only speaking potentially, but creating exponentially. He places in us ability, which enables us to carry out His desire to Sustain things for His Creation, but to Develop things that will enable future generations to produce, and create wealth for future generations to come.
The mans laziness, caused thwarted the potential of the talents given to him. The were buried under ground, where as they should have been seeds in the ground, and building foundations on the earth. Their ability was hampered by His unwillingness to use his ability. We must be aware that our ability to create and produce brings glory and honor to our creator, who gave us dominion and free will. He enjoys seeing us experience what He created, and reviles in seeing us take what He provided and creating for future generations.
He Placed Effort in the Wrong Place!
The text says that the man took the talent (estimated to be worth a years wages by some) and buried it in the ground. He used his ability and invested his time in digging a hole in the ground, when he could have taken it to a bank and gained standard interest or negotiated for a higher interest rate.
The work placed in to protecting the money could have been placed into investing it. It is likely that he took time searching for a place to bury the money that was away from people so that it would not be stolen while he too was away.
He will Never Know the Joy of Producing!
God rewarded the other servants with joy. It was an extension of the joy the both felt when returning to the Master more than He had entrusted them with. Furthermore, they were rewarded with future management, where as this servant would be cast into the darkness, and never experience the satisfaction of being productive.
Though he didn’t have the ability of the man with 5 to produce 5 more, or the man with 2, to produce 4, he was able with his ability to create 2, possibly 3 with extra effort. Sadly he will never know!
We all know someone, maybe its you, that recounts the moments and opportunities they had to advance their family and are saddened because they didn’t not produce when the moment was there! Many of us have thoughts of grandeur, and hopes of becoming wealth or elite, but multiplication requires hard work and sacrifice. While some inherit wealth, the vast majority of future wealth will come from someone who started with 5, 2, and even 1. It is truly not where you start, but that you start, and that you work hard until you have finished what you envisioned!