The Master On A Journey
© 01.10.2015 By D. Eric Williams
This article appeared in the January 15 edition of the Cottonwood Chronicle
A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and to return [Luke 19:12]
The parable of the minas tells us the Master is on a journey and will one day return to see what we have done with the responsibility he entrusted to us. According to the parable, the Lord does not expect the same results from everyone. Instead, each is expected to return a "profit" in keeping with their God-given capability.
The wealth entrusted us is the story of Jesus substitutionary death and his mediation on behalf of mankind. We must tell the world that salvation is more than dodging eternity in hell. We have a responsibility to tell others about the comprehensive nature of salvation in Christ. We must model this by bringing our arena of activity under the lordship of Jesus. In short, our job is to share the Gospel and disciple others in cultivating the new creation.
Remember, all of life is apprehended within the kingdom of God. Nothing is excluded and we need to express the rule of Christ in all things. If Christ is king over all, then the followers of Christ must be involved in all aspects of life. In other words, the kingdom of God is not properly expressed if it is limited to the life and sphere of the pastor, the teacher, the missionary and so on. Instead, the farmer, policemen, politician, barber, logger, homemaker, doctor, lawyer, plumber, veterinarian, the salesman, etc., must discharge their duties as unto the Lord and labor to manifest the rule of Jesus in their arena of responsibility.
Everyone will be called to account for this obligation. God has equipped each of us for a particular work and he expects us to be faithful in that function. This means we must maximize our potential for the sake of the kingdom. Although we have different functions, we all have the same duty to serve Christ with our gifts according to the grace he has given us (cf. Romans 12:1-8). He simply asks us to do our best - in his strength - with what we have. And it is never too early nor too late to start. Indeed, in each stage of life we may find we have different responsibilities and that different gifts come to the fore which the Lord desires to use.
If we are faithful servants in this realm, we will continue to function as faithful servants in eternity. It will be a different, better, place but God will not allow his handiwork to lie fallow. We know eternity is a material realm of a different character than this but it is a part of the original creation [Genesis 1:1] and is suitable for bodies like the one Christ now has. Even now Jesus resides in heaven in physical form. Therefore, if we are faithful in this realm we will be given greater responsibility in eternity even as we enjoy the presence of Jesus Christ in person.
On the other hand to be unfaithful is to disclose the absence of the new creation. To place yourself on the throne of your own heart and to turn your back on God reveals that the new birth never took place in your life. If a man is a new creation, he will not disregard God but will do everything he can to serve his Lord.
This does not mean a person must accomplish a certain amount of work. Kingdom work cannot be measured by human standards. Instead it is the loyal, loving, faithful effort that matters. God is the one who determines how much a person will accomplish. The individual must only lay his life at the feet of the Master.
I want to remind you that Christianity is more than a religion concerned with not doing anything wrong. Instead it is a relationship which should impel you to work so you may be found faithful in manifesting the rule of Christ in your sphere of influence. We do this because of love and gratitude. We do this as unto the Lord so we might one day hear him say "well done good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Master" [Matthew 25:21]