Not A Spectator Sport

God calls all to salvation and transformation. Salvation is available because God sent His Son to die for our sins providing a gift we receive by realizing our need for a Savior. Romans 10:9 says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”

No work is involved, just faith. Transformation takes place both inwardly and outwardly and comes with an assignment. Transformation has two parts. First, the renewing of our mind. Studying God’s Word leads to a transformation of our minds, providing us with guidance, correction, and assurance of the path the Lord intends for us. The Word acts as a guardrail for our journey in life. Romans 12:2 says, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing, and perfect will.”

The second part of our transformation is obeying God with the assignment. What is our assignment, you ask? We are heirs to our Father in Heaven and co-heirs with Christ, much like partners in business. Simply put, if our sins have been washed away through our salvation, then we are to tell others about salvation and participate in grafting others into the Kingdom. As we learn God’s Word, we should be compelled to pass it along. “Then he said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation (Mark 16:15).’”

If you have been blessed by God financially, then pass it along. All men have something to give! Not some – ALL! Some of you have faced obstacles because of unexpected troubles. Others experience setbacks because of temptation and sin. You may have seen firsthand how sin destroys. Now that you’ve been saved and redeemed, you have a responsibility to share the goodness of God with others. Simply put, since God has shown you grace, He wants you to show others. His love set you free, and He’s waiting for you to step up nobly and tell others.

Luke 19:11-27 contains a parable told by Jesus about a nobleman and his servants. In this story, Jesus illustrates important lessons about faithfulness, responsibility, and the kingdom of God.

While they were listening to this, he went on to tell them a parable, because he was near Jerusalem and the people thought that the kingdom of God was going to appear at once. He said: “A man of noble birth went to a distant country to have himself appointed king and then to return. So he called ten of his servants and gave them ten minas. ‘Put this money to work,’ he said, ‘until I come back.’ But his subjects hated him and sent a delegation after him to say, ‘We don’t want this man to be our king.’ He was made king, however, and returned home. Then he sent for the servants to whom he had given the money, in order to find out what they had gained with it. The first one came and said, ‘Sir, your mina has earned ten more.’ ‘Well done, my good servant!’ his master replied. ‘Because you have been trustworthy in a very small matter, take charge of ten cities.’ “The second came and said, ‘Sir, your mina has earned five more. “His master answered, ‘You take charge of five cities.’
Luke 19:11-19

The story begins as a man of noble birth leaves his estate and heads to a distant country for his coronation. Prior to his departure, he called ten of his most trusted servants and gave them each an assignment. Each servant was given the same amount of money (3 months’ wages) and instructed to ‘put the money to work.’

The first was obedient and faithful seeing his capital produce a 1,000% return. The king’s response was an assuring, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” This servant displayed incredible loyalty, and because of this trust he was awarded oversight of 10 cities. The second servant was also obedient and was rewarded for his stewardship. At first, it appeared that this servant was only partially faithful as the aforementioned praise was omitted. Did he have half the faith? What we do know is that he was loyal and obedient and as a result was awarded regency over 5 cities.

Then another servant came and said, ‘Sir, here is your mina; I have kept it laid away in a piece of cloth. I was afraid of you, because you are a hard man. You take out what you did not put in and reap what you did not sow.’ His master replied, ‘I will judge you by your own words, you wicked servant! You knew, did you, that I am a hard man, taking out what I did not put in, and reaping what I did not sow? Why then didn’t you put my money on deposit, so that when I came back, I could have collected it with interest? (Luke 19:20-23)

Notice that the third servant had an excuse. He feared what might happen if he fumbled the ball! He’d rather be on the sidelines of life than in the game. When called into the game, he’s someone who prays that the ball’s not handed to him. Well guess what? Upon receiving the ball, he not only refrained from running down the field, but instead sprinted toward the sidelines, crawled under the bench, and hid the ball. What a coward! In response to his foolish and fearful behavior, the king took back his money and called the servant EVIL (Luke 19:25).

The third class of characters in this story besides the faithful and unfaithful servants were the citizens of the kingdom. These were hostile subjects who hated the king. The moment the nobleman is gone, corruption and volatility ensue, and these enemies were scheming his demise. Luke 19:14 says that his subjects hated him and made a petition saying, “We don’t want this man to be our king.”

Out of ten servants and a region full of subjects, only two did the will of the KING! Who is the king? Jesus! Jesus is gone for a little while, but He will return. He has given us an assignment. God’s Holy Word sets in place blessings and curses for those who honor Him and those who don’t. These men weren’t just false servants who put their money in a handkerchief, they were foes! Looking at verse 27, we are told what happens to the wicked subjects because of their rebellion. Death!
But those enemies of mine who did not want me to be king over them—bring them here and kill them in front of me. (Luke 19:27)

The king never forced any of the servants to participate but gave them ample resources and opportunities to contribute to the kingdom. Like them, we are chosen to do good works, yet not all choose to participate. Every one of us has been created by God, but we have the choice to be a faithful servant, a false servant, or a foe. Luke 12:37 says, “Blessed are those servants whom the master finds on watch when he returns. Truly I tell you, he will dress himself to serve and will have them recline at the table, and He himself will come and wait on them.”

We can choose to be good, faithful servants, or disobey his requests, reject Him totally, and face destruction. Your blessings now may not include wealth, but maybe it will be part of your journey! And if you’re early in the journey, maybe you must use your hands and feet to serve. But He wants you in the game!

Few Red Truck Men have formal training. We are all clay being molded into His perfection, but we need not wait because perfection is only found in Heaven! Every person you meet needs a touch from the Lord. What happens if God’s waiting for your hand to be that touch? All men should ask themselves which of the 10 servants they are. God’s Word is so good because it gives us a head start into what He desires us to be. Someday when we get to sit at His feet, I know we will all long to hear, ‘Good job, my faithful servant!’

Have a great week!


Steve Thomas