Archives: Matthew 25:14-30

The Kingdom of God is Not a Talent Show

Mark, a friend of mine who is a priest in Denver, wrote on Facebook this week, “When writing a sermon, it’s not that helpful or productive to keep saying to yourself, “This really isn’t my favorite gospel passage…”.”

And then Bill, a priest in Alabama, wrote back, “I often say exactly that in a sermon. Chances are it’s not the congregation’s favorite either.”

So I don’t know how you feel about the Parable of the Talents, but it pretty much left me cold this week aside from the usual interpretations about how fear limits our potential for ministry.

The traditional interpretation is to see God or Jesus in the role of the Master.

The idea is that the slaves with the two and five talents are good and faithful and did fruitful ministry because they were brave and took risks.

And the last slave who buries his talent is weak and foolish, and has wasted his ministry opportunity because he was afraid.

But we need to call this into question by taking a closer look at the Master on whom we have projected the person of God.

The Master is actually not a very good person. Continue reading