- This parable was understood specifically about the reception of the gospel. The man departing was viewed by the Church as Christ ascending to heaven. First servant represented the Jews who accepted Christianity, the second servant represented the Gentiles who got converted to Christianity and the third servant represents the unconverted.
- Some interpreters do not focus on any eschatological themes, but relate this parable in terms of stewardship. Reward is given to the ones who make effort and remain faithful to the entrusted cause.
- The traditional view of the parable is that it depicts the time from Jesus’ death and resurrection to the parousia. The disciples ought to encourage kingdom living.
- There is a Chinese parable which says, ‘Success: Heaven’s will, human effort.’ In the Scriptures we encounter God who grants success through the miraculous collapse of Jericho’s wall or by making the sun standstill, but usually grants success through the means of shrewd strategy and hard work. Sound stewardship is what is required.
- Quality work, importance of education, saving and deferring gratification and family commitment are all the values of good and faithful servant. In this context let me quote Richard Baxter “Waste of time…loss of time through sociability, idle talking, luxury, more sleep than necessary…is worth of absolute moral condemnation. Every hour lost is lost to labour for God…Work hard in your calling.”
We cannot question why the Lord is partial with His gifts and talents that He gives us. He gives talents to each one according to his/her ability and therefore He does not expect more than one’s capacity. Sometimes while regretting the fact that we are given less, we fail to value and develop the single talent we are entrusted with. We have several examples of people who were thought to be useless rose up to greater heights by means of sheer hard work and commitment. Parable of talents gives us yet another chance to make the best use of time and resources available at our disposal.
Parable of the Talents in Missionary Perspective by John B. Carpenter, in Missiology, v 25, Issue 2, 1997
Stories with Intent – Klyne. R. Snodgrass