“20But another one came and said, ‘My Adon, here is your coin which was with me, which I kept laid up in a purse. 21For I was afraid of you, because you are a harsh man; you pick up what you have not laid down, and you reap what you have not sown.’ 22He said to him, ‘I will judge you from your own mouth, O wicked servant. You knew me, that I am a harsh man, and pick up what I have not laid down, and reap what I have not sowed. 23Why then did you not give my money to the exchange, so that when I came I could demand it with its interest?’ 24And he said to those who stood in his presence, ‘Take away the coin from him and give it to him who has ten coins.’ 25They said to him, ‘Our Adon, he has already with him ten coins.’ 26He said to them, ‘I say to you: To everyone who has shall be given; and from him who has not, even that which he has will be taken away from him. 27But those my enemies, who were not willing that I should rule over them, bring here, and kill them before me.’” “
The parable above is often cited for motivation. For some, the motivation is money. For me, the motivation in declaring the Good News of Messiah Yeshua, the Son of God. In this parable, the ‘great man’ GOES AWAY, and he does so to RECEIVE A KINGDOM. This is huge, and should make us stop and think. Yeshua, at this point in His ministry, has preached about “Malkhut HaElohim,” the Kingdom of G-d, for three and a half years. He is staying in Beit Anya, a tiny ‘daughter city’, a farming village on the side of the Mount of Olives. He knows the Pesakh is coming, and that He is about to be betrayed, tried and executed. He is about to die and be buried, to rise again after three days. And then He will go away. He explains this going away in depth in the Pesakh Seder, using Galilean wedding rites as the framework of it. And He is explaining in this parable what will happen in the meantime, after the ‘great man’ goes away to ‘receive a kingdom’: SOME will labor, and grow their master’s wealth [kingdom], some will barely grow it; but some will receive their gift from him, and just ‘sit on it’, and do nothing with it.
In my view, the ‘hyper-grace’ theologians are the ones who just sit on it. They think there is nothing to ‘do’ in His Kingdom. They think they know their master so well, and that He requires nothing of us after He gives us this great gift of salvation. They have received this great gift of being rescued from the stench of their sin, and from the punishment they deserve, and they simply relax. And anyone who comes along to ‘spurn one another on toward love AND GOOD WORKS” they mock: “that’s ‘legalism'”, and they do nothing to GROW themselves or others in Messiah Yeshua. They think they are ‘in like Flynn’, and they simply sit by and ‘ride the coattails’ of those actually laboring for His Kingdom. They ignore all the many admonishments in the scriptures to ‘check our faith,’ to ‘serve and obey’, to ‘hold on to that which you have’, and not to let people among believers ‘take us away from God’, or to ‘steal our crown’; they ignore Yeshua saying over and over “to him who overcomes”, where ‘overcomes’ is an action verb, and implies struggle. They ignore the mandate to share the GOOD NEWS, “Besorah”. They ‘think’ the good news is simply ‘know Jesus’ in the intellectual way, to ‘believe’ that He took away all our sins, without understanding that He requires “Teshuvah”, that everyone should turn AWAY FROM their sins and turn toward God, to live a DIFFERENT LIFE. And that once this is done, to GO OUT into the world and BE LIGHT.
And because they don’t do this, ‘even that which he has will be taken away from him’. That which he has was SALVATION: the GOOD NEWS. That great gift we ALL SHOULD CHERISH, and INCREASE on His behalf!
Yeshua, four days before Passover, is telling us that while He is away, some of those who actually receive from Him will sit on their duff and do nothing with the gift of SALVATION. To INCREASE it. We INCREASE SALVATION by INVESTING our lives into the lives of others, and brining that knowledge to them, CHANGING them by giving them the NEW BIRTH Yeshua gives us when He imparts life to us, and spurning each other on toward good deeds.
Is everyone called to be an overt ‘evangelist/karoz?’ A ‘herald’ in the street? No. But, we are all called to have His Ru’akh, His Breath/Power within us, and to treat people the way He would have us to treat them: with compassion. And by that compassion, share with them the news that they can indeed be RESCUED from their sin.
Our society has learned to accept sin, and of late has begun to PROMOTE it, with PRIDE. We, instead of having compassion on those who struggle with sin, either embrace it, or ridicule the person so much they would never look at Yeshua. People who participate in this month of ‘pride’ have been fooled into thinking that since they have ‘felt that way’ ever since they could remember, they must have been born that way, and God must have designed them that way, and so the behavior is ‘okay’. When the truth is, they were born into the fallen state of sin, and need a ‘new birth’, to be BORN into HIS KINGDOM, and then to do something with it.
And then there are those who have no apparent sin struggle, of which they are aware. These usually are those who are ‘successful religionists’, and they are smug in their perceived righteousness. They think they get their righteousness from Yeshua, when truthfully it is contrived in their own minds, or by their version of christian religion. They may have at one time had His righteousness, but what they then do with it is develop another kind of pride. The pride of Korakh, crowding out true righteousness. They see themselves as so righteous, that they cannot even recognize their own sin of self-righteousness, when they contrast themselves against another of His Servants.. They deem themselves ‘anointed’, ‘holy’, and worthy to tear down anyone who is actually anointed and DOING the work of God, when they WOULD NOT. They don’t ‘declare;’ they don’t put themselves on the line, but they are quick to criticize everyone who does, and find fault with His laborers where they may be weak. And the ‘earth’ swallows them up, without their knowing it. They have NO COMPASSION for those who actually minister.
And next, we consider what Yeshua said to those who say they serve Him, but do NOT FOLLOW Him:
23A man asked Him, “Are there only a few who are to be saved?” Yeshua said to them, 24“Strive to enter in through the narrow gate; for I say to you that many will seek to enter in and will not be able. 25From the hour when the Adon of the house rises up and locks the door, you will be standing outside and knocking at the door, and you will begin to say, ‘Adoneinu, Adoneinu, [Our Lord] open for us;’ and He will answer, saying, ‘I [Yeshua] say to you, I do not know you or where you come from.’ 26And you will begin to say, ‘We have eaten and drunk in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’ 27And He will say to you, ‘I do not know you or where you come from; depart from me, O you workers of iniquity. 28There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth when you see Avraham and Yitz’khak and Ya’akov and all the Nevi’im in Malkhut HaElohim, but you will be thrown outside.”
These are NOT people who never heard of Yeshua! These are people who EMBRACED Him, and CLAIMED that He was their teacher! That they followed Him! But, they in fact did not, because they were “WORKERS OF INIQUITY”. Most people do not realize that a ‘worker of iniquity’ is one who breaks His Torah. The books of Job and Psalms echo that phrase over and over, and almost always explain it as those who do not follow His Torah. Following His Torah is FIRST AND FOREMOST about how we treat our fellow man, and then ALSO about how God expects to be worshipped. You cannot have one without the other. Throw away your least favorite half of the Ten Commandments now, the ones you don’t want. One half tells us how to love HIM, and the other how to love people. But, most people only live by one or two of the ten.
The purpose of this is NOT to ‘sound’ ‘high and mighty’. Not at all. I discipline myself daily, and check myself. But, I also know that there are far too many people who stay comfortable in their laziness, and/or in their sin. Today is not a day to do that.
20“But you, my beloved, build up yourselves anew in the consecrated trust through The Ru’akh HaKodesh [Consecrated Breath/Spirit], by means of prayer. 21Let us keep ourselves in the love of Elohim, looking for the mercy of Adoneinu Yeshua HaMashi’akh, and for the life which is ours forever. 22And those we have discussed, prove. 23And some of them, snatch them from the fire; and when they repent, have mercy on them with compassion; despise even a garment which is spotted with the things of the flesh.” Yehudah