Sun, 2019-07-28 12:02
2. Stewarding your Gifts and Talents well
Last Sunday we began a new series of messages concerning our stewardship of our God-given gifts and talents. God has endowed each of us with a set of gifts, talents and special abilities. Along with that, He expects us to be good stewards (managers) of these gifts, and use them to help build His Kingdom.
1 Peter 4:10 (NKJV) As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
Sometimes we group the gifts that God has given us into three general areas:
- Our time
- Our talents
- Our treasure
The combined efforts of “each believer” using their time, talents and treasure to serve God causes:
- The church of Jesus Christ to flourish and increase
- The Kingdom of God being extended in the earth
- 1,000 Year Reign of Christ on the earth (Millennial Reign of Christ)
Revelation 20:1–6 (NKJV) Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. 2 He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; 3 and he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. But after these things he must be released for a little while. 4 And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. 5 But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.
- Acts 1:9 speaks about Jesus’ Ascension to heaven after His resurrection
- Rev. 19:11-21 describes the 2nd Coming of Jesus Christ and His defeat of the anti-christ (beast) and his armies at the battle of Armageddon
- The period between Christ’s Ascension and His 2nd Coming is called: The Church Age, or, the Age or Dispensation of Grace, and is thought to last for 2000 years
- Timewise, we are currently in the final moments of the Church Age
- Rev. 20:1-6 speaks about Jesus Christ setting up His literal Kingdom on earth which will last for 1,000 years
- We, the resurrected saints, will rule and reign with Christ in His literal Kingdom on earth for 1,000 years
- We will reign over nations of unregenerate peoples who have survived the Great Tribulation and who will multiply on the earth (Zech. 14:16-21)
- Stewardship explained through the parable of the minas.
Luke 19:11–27 (NKJV) Now as they heard these things, He spoke another parable, because He was near Jerusalem and because they thought the kingdom of God would appear immediately. 12 Therefore He said: “A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and to return. 13 So he called ten of his servants, delivered to them ten minas, and said to them, ‘Do business till I come.’ 14 But his citizens hated him, and sent a delegation after him, saying, ‘We will not have this man to reign over us.’ 15 “And so it was that when he returned, having received the kingdom, he then commanded these servants, to whom he had given the money, to be called to him, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading. 16 Then came the first, saying, ‘Master, your mina has earned ten minas.’ 17 And he said to him, ‘Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.’ 18 And the second came, saying, ‘Master, your mina has earned five minas.’ 19 Likewise he said to him, ‘You also be over five cities.’ 20 “Then another came, saying, ‘Master, here is your mina, which I have kept put away in a handkerchief. 21 For I feared you, because you are an austere man. You collect what you did not deposit, and reap what you did not sow.’ 22 And he said to him, ‘Out of your own mouth I will judge you, you wicked servant. You knew that I was an austere man, collecting what I did not deposit and reaping what I did not sow. 23 Why then did you not put my money in the bank, that at my coming I might have collected it with interest?’ 24 “And he said to those who stood by, ‘Take the mina from him, and give it to him who has ten minas.’ 25 (But they said to him, ‘Master, he has ten minas.’) 26 ‘For I say to you, that to everyone who has will be given; and from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him. 27 But bring here those enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, and slay them before me.’ ”
- The parable of the minas (money coins) speaks about 3 different people:
- The nobleman (Jesus Christ)
- The nobleman’s servants (Christians)
- The citizens [of the earth] (unbelievers)
- The nobleman in vs 12 is Jesus Christ who went to heaven to receive a kingdom for Himself (Daniel 7:13-14)
- After a long time He returning to earth (Matt. 25:19)
- Before His departure, the nobleman (Jesus):
- Called his servants (Christians)
- Gave them a mina (represents our gifts, talents and abilities)
- Commissioned them (do business till I come [back])
- The citizens (vs 14) rejected His rule over their lives and were judged at His return (Second death – Rev. 21:8)
- On His return, Jesus called His servants together to give an account of how they had used His minas (gifts) (vs 15)
- The three servants mentioned represent three groups of Christians:
- The 1st servant produced a 10 fold return = very diligent
- The 2nd servant produced a 5 fold return = diligent
- The 3rd servant produced nothing = fearful, confused & lazy
- The 1st servant with 10 minas was rewarded with authority over 10 cities
(in the Millennial Reign of Christ)
- The 2nd servant with 5 minas was rewarded with authority over 5 cities
(in the Millennial Reign of Christ)
- The 3rd servant with no earned mina:
- received a rebuke from Jesus for his laziness
- suffered complete loss of reward
- had his mina taken from him
- had no apparent involvement in the Millennial Reign of Christ
Romans 14:10–12 (NKJV)…For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.…12 … each of us shall give account of himself to God.
- Salvation (access to heaven) is by God’s grace alone through faith in Jesus Christ
- Rewards in Jesus’ Kingdom are given to us in direct proportion to our faithfulness and diligence in serving Him during our lifetime on earth
Small Group Discussion: 2. Stewarding your Gifts and Talents well
Revelation 20:6 (NKJV) 6 Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.
At His 2nd Coming, Jesus Christ will set up His literal kingdom on the earth, which will last for 1,000 years
We, the resurrected saints, will rule and reign with Christ in His literal Kingdom on earth for 1,000 years
Our faithfulness in serving Jesus now (in this life) will determine the level of our involvement in His Millennial Kingdom
The parable of the minas (Luke 19:11–27) speaks of 3 groups of Christians:
- Those who are very diligent in using their God-given gifts & produce a 10 fold return
- Those who are diligent and produced a 5 fold return
- Those who are fearful, confused & lazy and produce nothing
Each will be rewarded according to their own faithfulness in serving Jesus. Those who have produced nothing will not be rewarded in eternity.
Romans 14:10–12 (NKJV)…For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.…12 So then each of us shall give account of himself to God.
- What did the Holy Spirit emphasise to you during Sunday’s message? What verse of Scripture or main point seems most relevant to you right now? __________________________________________________________
- Which of the 3 groups of Christians do you see yourself in?
- Do you have a dormant gift, or some “spare” capacity which could be employed towards increased “production” in God’s Kingdom?
Putting it into Practice:
- Continue to faithfully use your God-given time, talents and treasure to serve Jesus Christ
- Ask God to show you any dormant gift in your life, and also any “spare” capacity that can be “employed” towards greater production on His kingdom
- Continue to pray for, intercede and reach out to the people whose names are on your Prayer, Care and Share Card