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Air and Opportunity

• Dwayne Polk

God has given us the Holy Spirit as a “deposit” and guarantee of things to come. But we are expected to wisely invest this “deposit” in the world today.

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In the passage for this week, Jesus was nearing Jerusalem and those with him expected the kingdom of God to break out very soon. Jesus told them a parable. (See today’s text from Luke 19:11-27.) Dwayne helped us see how those who were with Jesus at that time would connect this parable to what had happened with the son of Herod the Great, Archeleus. While Archeleus was away from his subjects some of them rebelled against him and he dealt with them harshly when he returned in power.

In Jesus’ parable, the ruler instructed his servants to put the money he gave them “to work” until the ruler came back. Two of the servants had made gains with the money and they were rewarded with more responsibility but the other servant failed to obey the order and simply returned the same money back to the

ruler. This disobedient servant was treated as an enemy of the ruler.

Dwayne connected this parable to our own relationships with Jesus in this way: Jesus is like the ruler who is not immediately present and the servants are the followers of Jesus. The followers of Jesus have been given the Holy Spirit and while we are waiting for Jesus’ return, we are expected to invest that gift and make an impact in the world for the kingdom of God.

To support this understanding, Dwayne reminded us of Ephesians 1:11-14 and Romans 8:14-17, both passages describe the new relationship we have with God in Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit’s dwelling within us. In Ephesians 1 the Spirit is spoken of as a deposit. This deposit is not for us alone, for us to invest in the world around us as well as we express our loyalty to Jesus. In Romans 8 the Spirit is the way God leads us and reassures us so that we will have the strength to share in both Christ’s sufferings and Christ’s glory as we faithfully follow the Spirit.

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Topics: Discipleship, Faithfulness, Holy Spirit

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Focus Scripture:

  • Luke 19:11-27

    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.'

    “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?'

    “Then he said to those standing by, 'Take his mina away from him and give it to the one who has ten minas.'

    “ 'Sir,' they said, 'he already has ten!'

    “He replied, 'I tell you that to everyone who has, more will be given, but as for those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away. 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.' “

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