Scripture Lesson September 6th, 2020

Matthew 25:14-30

The Parable of the Talents

14 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. 15 And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. 16 Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. 17 And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. 18 But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord’s money. 19 After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them.

20 “So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.’ 21 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ 22 He also who had received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.’ 23 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’

24 “Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’

26 “But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. 

 

27 So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. 28 So he took the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents.

29 ‘For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. 30 And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

 

 

 

Here Ends the reading 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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First this reading from scripture is entirely spoken by Jesus. Jesus gave so much detail in his teaching and knew that Parables were the best way to convey what he needed us to understand.

This morning we are if you have not guessed or sleeping through the reading we are taking about money. We are talking about choices that we make with our money. We are talking about stewardship and giving a part of our earning back to God. For some of you at home you just left FB if I could see the numbers on the screen they be going down. Or sitting here wished they could leave, why did I come this morning to hear this again. Every year we talk about it and this year I am talking about stewardship this year. 

But let us look at this a bit differently this year as we look at everything a bit differently or a lot different since the pandemic. As we look at what we can be thankful for, our families, our choices that we still have the freedom to make for our self’s.  Yes, life is different, but we can still make many of our own decision’s day to day.

We have the free will in our own thinking and mental process in what we believe will happen ,for, our Jobs, our health, and our family, for some it is positive if we have the faith that we are not always in control but God. For others it’s the promise that after this pandemic we will be stronger as a, person and family a community and a nation with our firm faith in God. 

You see our relationship to God and the world is one of stewardship. We are to use everything entrusted to us in such a way that the benefits God’s kingdom. The blessing we receive for following through with giving thanks through our giving regularly, repays itself in Gods blessings in your own life. 

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But what we have seen in the past months here at Risen Christ has been amazing you all have stepped up to continue to give to this church and for that we are all blessed to continue worshipping in this place as a true family of God together here and on FB. 

We are so lucky to have each other and  with your continue generosity that will ensure that we will continue for many years ahead of these current times of uncertainty to continue worship,  with the blessed promise that we may have  a new Pastor very soon and grow larger as a family of God. 

 So why is money such a touchy topic in churches today anyway? Probably more so with the Pandemic. Some people outside the church who hear this message preached will think the church is only out to get their money. “I’m not going to that church, all they ever do is ask for money. Sure they quote scripture and say it’s better to give than to receive. Seems to me they are all about receiving.” 

Have you ever heard that before? I have but just because someone does not like the topic of the sermon or the call for outreach doesn’t mean we can stop addressing the topic. 

The Apostle Paul tells us in Acts 20:27, “For I have not hesitated to proclaim to you the whole will of God.” Tithing is as much a part of being a Christian as baptism and communion. We have all witnessed a wonderful baptism or participated in communion. We gave our offerings.

Did you know that most preachers do not like to preach about money, me included? There are many scriptures that have always been extremely sensitive and now there are even many more sensitive and even dangerous scriptures to preach on for Pastors today!  Just as this topic of giving money is a sensitive issue today, so it was in Jesus’ time as well. 

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That didn’t stop Jesus from talking about it though. Did you know that more than half of Jesus’ parables relate to stewardship? 

Brian Sluth, former president of the Christian Stewardship Association, said, “There are 2,350 passages in the Bible dealing with money and material possessions – more than on any other subject – but it’s the least talked about subject in the church.”

 One out of every six verses in Matthew, Mark, and Luke deals with money. I get the impression God wants us to deal with this issue regularly.

Throughout the Old Testament tithing is described as giving the very best of the first of everything in our lives – our thoughts, our hearts, our families, our possessions, our money – nothing is to be held back from God. The New Testament scriptures refer to giving it all to God. Not just the first 10 percent, all of it. Did you catch that part in our scripture this morning?

But first what do think of God for asking? A angry God that is greedy and give me your earnings or else? Do we feel we have to out of guilt? 

Luther: “The right image of who God is leads to rightly imaging God in how we live” 

We are justified, changed for ever by the atoning blood of Jesus who died for us. We can and will be renewed in our thinking and actions in every day life if we first understand what was done on our behalf not just for our lives here on earth but for an eternity.

Luther goes on: “This effected by first being delivered from error-from the erroneous thoughts and ideas in our corrupt nature with it’s false conceptions of God”.

 

 

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Throughout the Old Testament tithing is described as giving the very best of the first of everything in our lives – our thoughts, our hearts, our families, our possessions, our money – nothing is to be held back from God. The New Testament scriptures refer to giving it all to God. Not just the first 10 percent, all of it. Did you catch that part in our scripture this morning?

“We build on this foundation by putting on new conceptions of God revealed in Christ-being renewed in the spirit of our mind. By constantly growing and becoming established in that true conception and clear knowledge of Christ begun in us, in opposition to error and negative conceptions of God. Th heart is illumined unto righteousness and holiness wherein man follows the guidance of Gods Word and feels a desire for a godly walk and good life. Knowing who God is in Christ fuels our desire for Godliness and empowers us for godly living”.

 

Luther wants us to renew our thinking of who our God is. Once we can establish and truly understand our Loving and generous God we will be able to give out of Love and compassion for our giving not only is a blessing but in turn help our church!

 

In Jesus Name

Amen!