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Hidden Talent

  • Hidden Talent from Refreshing Hope Ministries on Vimeo.

    One of the last public sermons Jesus gave was on the Mount of Olives and called "The Olivet Discourse." It was right before His crucifixion. Jesus and His disciples were at the temple in Jerusalem, and when they were leaving, the disciples were in awe of the colossal structure. Maybe they had wandered around sightseeing, for they began pointing buildings out to Jesus. He wasn't impressed but told them this:

    (Matthew 24:1–3 NKJV)  Then Jesus went out and departed from the temple, and His disciples came up to show Him the buildings of the temple. And Jesus said to them, "Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down." Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?"

    Jesus told them many things about a time coming, a time of great tribulation. Most of what He said came to pass about 37 years later, in 70 A.D., when the Romans surrounded Jerusalem to put down a Jewish rebellion. The one million inhabitants there starved and began eating one another. The Romans eventually breached the wall and destroyed the city. They carried the banners of their gods into the temple and offered sacrifices to them.

    Though the Roman commander Titus wanted to spare the temple (click on image to enlarge), in the chaos, it caught fire. The temple was ornately decorated and overlaid with so much gold that the Jewish historian Josephus wrote that it was blinding to look at when the sun shone. What was not covered in gold was covered in giant white marble blocks, some fifty feet long, twenty-four feet wide, and sixteen feet thick. The stones were so white that it looked as if the temple was covered in snow from a distance.

    The fire in the temple was so hot the gold melted and ran down between the huge stones. So after it cooled, the Romans dragged away every block to recover the gold, leaving not one stone upon another. Some put this prophecy into the future, and it may happen again, but it has already happened once.

    There are so many differing views on the details of the return of Jesus Christ, "pre-tribulation, mid-tribulation, post-tribulation, Is there a tribulation?" A while back, the Lord revealed to me that none of them really matter. For if you would live differently because you thought He was returning this afternoon, why are you not already? And what do you believe He will think of your excuse?

    Where Scripture is silent, we should be as well. When we start "filling in the blanks," we get into trouble. We can learn enough from what is written without having to speculate on what isn't. Something we do know is that we won't know the day or hour, for His return will come at a time we do not expect:

    (Matthew 24:36–44 NKJV)  "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.

    Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.

    During the time of Noah, it was just another day on Earth with people eating, drinking, and attending weddings they had planned long in advance. Then it suddenly began raining, and they realized the deadline for salvation applications was yesterday. That's what the return of Jesus Christ will be like. It will be too late to be saved.

    (Matthew 25:1–13 NKJV)  "Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept. "And at midnight a cry was heard: 'Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!'

    Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, 'Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.' But the wise answered, saying, 'No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.' And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut. "Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, 'Lord, Lord, open to us!' But he answered and said, 'Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.' "Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming."

    The Bridegroom is a picture of Jesus, whom we are waiting on to return. All ten of the bridesmaids here call the Master Lord, but only half of them had actually prepared for His return. When the door to the wedding banquet was shut, it was too late to get ready. All of these examples are taken from the same sermon on the Mount of Olives. Here is another:

    (Matthew 25:14–30 NKJV)  "For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord's money. After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them.

    The master here is a picture of the Lord Jesus Christ who has traveled to a far country. He called his servants and divided talents among them. A talent in the Bible is a weight of 57 to 80 pounds. A talent of silver would have been equal to a 6,000-day wage for common labor, over 16 years of work. If it were gold, one talent would have been worth 180,000 days' wages, or 493 years. It was an astronomical amount of money.

    "So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, 'Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.' His lord said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.' He also who had received two talents came and said, 'Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.' His lord said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.'

    Notice that the multiplication of the talents came while the Master was away and was then presented to Him. Not vice versa. Sure, there was a reward for those servants, but it was based entirely on what they had done with what He had given them while he was away. The first two servants were faithful over a few things, so He made them rulers over many things. Because he that can be trusted with a little, can be trusted with a lot.

    "Then he who had received the one talent came and said, 'Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.' "But his lord answered and said to him, 'You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. So take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents. 'For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'

    The third servant came for his reward, but the Lord called him wicked and lazy. Apparently, he was a "Ne'er-do-well," an idle, worthless person. He was scared, so he took his talent, hid it in the ground, and hoarded it away for a rainy day. He didn't think, work, or even try, and when the Lord showed up to settle accounts, he made excuses. It didn't go well for him. Not once in Scripture has an excuse changed the Lord's mind. You need a better plan than that.

    The theme in all of the parables in the Olivet Discourse was that while the Master was away, some prepared themselves while others didn't. When the Master arrived suddenly, those who were ready received their reward. At the same time, those who hadn't prepared for His return made excuses. The Lord doesn't like excuses.

    We are to serve Him while we are waiting on His return. What will you do with the time and resources He has given you?

    You can pray this with me if you like:

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, please give me a clear vision of what You have for me and help me get in tune with what You are doing today. I want to be ready for the return of Jesus Christ. May Your will be done on Earth and in my life, as it is in heaven. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen!


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23 comments
  • 1
Kevin J. Eck
Kevin J. Eck Amen,
May 16
  • 1
Debi Burton
Debi Burton Heavenly Father, please give me a clear vision of what You have for me and help me get in tune with what You are doing today. I want to be ready for the return of Jesus Christ. May Your will be done on Earth and in my life, as it is in heaven. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen!
May 16
  • 2
David Fabillaran
David Fabillaran

Amen, Lord Jesus!

May 16
  • 2
Schalk  de Beer
Schalk de Beer

Yes Lord Jesus, amen and amen. 

May 16
  • 2
Celeste Strenn
Celeste Strenn

Amen

May 16
  • 2
Kay Collinsworth
Kay Collinsworth

Amen

May 16
  • 2
Brenda F
Brenda F

Amen

May 16
  • 2
Michael Schacher
Michael Schacher

Amen !

May 16
  • 1
Candy Laventure
Candy Laventure

Praise the Lord. We give him all glory. Amen!

May 16
  • 2
David Krull
David Krull

Amen. Father forgive for my laziness and excuses in not doing more for You in life. Open doors and use me according to Your will Lord. Help me be a good witness for You in Jesus Christ Name.

May 16
  • 2
Dave and Sue Earlywine
Dave and Sue Earlywine

Amen 

May 16
  • 2
Dana Rozell
Dana Rozell

Amen.

May 16
  • 2
Wanda Pennington
Wanda Pennington

Amen 

May 16
  • 2
Lynn Brown
Lynn Brown

Heavenly Father, please give me a clear vision of what You have for me and help me get in tune with what You are doing today. I want to be ready for the return of Jesus Christ. May Your will be done on Earth and in my life, as it is in heaven. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen!

May 16
  • 2
Marisa Jackson
Marisa Jackson

Amen!!

May 16
  • 2
Yvette York
Yvette York

Amen Good Morning Everyone Have A Bless Week 

May 16
  • 2
Jose Simo
Jose Simo

Heavenly Father thank You for all You have done in my life even though I am a sinner, show me the way while Iistening to Your message. Don't leave me or forsake me, I humbly ask Lord. In Jesus Holy name I pray,Amen. 

Thank you Pastor and Sylvia, God bless you both, Amen. 

May 16
  • 1
Liesel  aka  Lisa Wardle
Liesel aka Lisa Wardleedited: May 16

Amen and Amen!!! Yes Lord, this is my utmost prayer that not only I, but all my loved ones would be ready for You when you return, but not only my loved ones, but all of those that you put in my reach, far and near, oh Lord, dear Heavenly Father please hear my prayer in the name of Thy Holy Son Jesus, Amen! (h5)

May 16
  • 1
Sherry McCosh
Sherry McCosh

Amen!! Excellent devotion today!! I pray Father God that I would be ready for the return of Jesus Christ, my Lord and savior. Please forgive my sins and bless me and guide and direct my path for your will in my life. I worship you, Praise you and Adore you God! There is no one like you, there is no greater than you, no one higher than you, let my life forever praise the Glory of your Name!!

May 16
  • 1
Mari Kaufmann
Mari Kaufmann

Amen

May 16
  • 1
Suzy Romaine
Suzy Romaine

The Word of the Lord is alive and active! I thank you Lord and declare your Word is alive and active in my life and my family's lives. Thank you that we are listening and obeying and are ready for your coming. In Jesus name we pray amen. 

May 17
  • 1
Richard Mondello
Richard Mondello

Please Holy Spirit, help me to do all I can with the life God has given me; to reach the lost and help those who are in need. In Lord Yeshua's name I ask this, Amen. 

May 17
  • 1
Wesley Paulus
Wesley Paulus

Amen! 

May 17