Matthew 25:24-30: 24 “Then the man who had received one bag of gold came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 So I was afraid and went out and hid your gold in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’ 26 “His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27 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. 28 “‘So take the bag of gold from him and give it to the one who has ten bags. 29 For whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. 30 And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
In this parable, the master made an accounting of his servants to see how wisely they had invested his money. Jesus is telling us this parable, because he wants us to do the accounting ourselves, before our Master returns. While he is using the picture of a businessman with his servants, the parable is not just about money. It’s about life itself.
What are you doing with your life? Have you made an accounting of your life? Where are you spending your time? How much of it is wasted watching television, when you might be visiting an elderly neighbor? Have you invested heavily in your children’s spiritual lives by teaching them the Word of God? What are you doing to proclaim the gospel to the lost?
I read a good book lately about showing mercy and really caring for the people around you. The author made the point that a lot of Christians think that dropping a few dollars in the offering plate is doing the Lord’s Word. At the same time, we look at the people on drugs, or the homeless, or the spiritually lost, and we pass by on the other side, like the priest and Levite in the story of the Good Samaritan. We don’t have time. We don’t want to get involved, because caring for people with issues is messy work.
Jesus teaches us a different economy. What you spend on yourself is lost. What you spend on others is invested for eternity.