The life of a person who trusts Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord is in a state of constant change. Those who have lived with Christ for many years and do not experience many changes can have problems understanding this statement. However, our text from Luke 19 can help us.
A man of noble birth in our text had given money (ten minnas) to his servants and then went away. One of those servants invested his money and made a good return on that investment. When his master returned and asked what he had done with the minna intrusted to him, he replied, “Your minna has earned ten more.”
“Well done, my good servant!” the master replied. “Because you have been trustworthy in a very small matter, take charge of ten cities.”
The second servant showed his master how he had earned five minnas with his money. So his master blessed him with five cities.
But then came another servant who had not done anything with the money. In fact, he hid it away in a piece of cloth because he was afraid of his master, knowing he was a difficult man Ð one who expects something from nothing. So the master, angered that he did not even get interest on his investment, took the servant’s ten minna and gave it to the one who has ten. Then the master said to those who objected, “To everyone who has, more will be given, but as for the one who has nothing, even what he has will be taken away. But those enemies of mine who did not want me to be king over them Ð bring them here and kill them in front of me.”
These are difficult words coming from our Lord Jesus Christ. However, they teach us that those who confess Jesus as their Savior will either grow in their faith, or it will be taken from them.
Some of our churches have a confirmation program where we can intellectually learn about Jesus. However, in nearly every confirmation class, some do not continue walking with Jesus in His Word. They are changing, but not according to the will of God.
Others, however, continue to grow in the Word. They come to Bible classes and worship services. They spent their leisure time with Christian friends, and their conversations are around Jesus Christ and what He has done for them. They become stronger believers. They are those who receive Jesus Christ into their heart as well as their intellect. They feed on His Word and grow in the faith. When this is your lifestyle, people notice the change by the way you live your life. You are anxious for others to hear the Word of God. Bad habits are gone Ð lying, stealing, cheating, doing anything contrary to the will of God. The heart is changed by the Savior who is living in it and their life is constant change.
It is important to remember that our salvation comes by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. Christ alone Ð through his suffering, death, and resurrection Ð gives us salvation. While living out life according to God’s will does not save us, if Jesus Christ is our Savior and lives in our heart, we have a longing to serve Him.
I remember hearing once about how a person had become such a great Sunday school superintendent. In the quietness of another setting, someone told me how this man had lived a reckless life as a younger man. But when he met Christ, he turned his life around and is now a delightful brother in Christ Jesus. It almost seemed as if he was working to win favor with God.
This applies also to our churches. It is good for them to raise money for poor people in their community. However, that should not be the reason churches minister for social justice, which is something service clubs can do. The mission of the Church of Jesus Christ, first and foremost, is to tell people about Jesus Christ. The true Christian, who walks with Him every day and is constantly changing, experiences the Holy Spirit nudging him to help the needy. It is important to feed on God’s Word every day in order to know what it is to live with Christ and serve Him.
We see many churches today that don’t seem to change. They have no great projects to serve Christ and make Him known. The church doors are open on Sunday morning, but little activity occurs during the week. They have few Bible studies, few discussion groups, and few places for people to go to learn more about the Christian faith.
When the church is full of people who know Christ from the heart, it will change drastically, because Christ is leading, empowering, and guiding his Church to be his spokespersons on this earth. Jesus Christ Ð the Savior of this world Ð has chosen to invade the hearts of people. Those who will keep Him there and let His Word feed their souls, will become His servants. Those servants go out and get other servants. Soon they have a church full of people who know Christ and what their true mission really is. It is not long, then, before those churches become a community in which there is no question who is their motivator. We have a marvelous opportunity in this day and age, where people think we are the ones who are feeding the hungry, but it is Jesus. Pray the leadership of our church will that the strength of God-fearing living is in the hands of Jesus.
Where does Jesus live in your life? Do you have an intellectual faith where not too much is happening, or do you have a faith that is in the heart, where Christ talks to you every day? That is our question. Don’t be the person who put the minna in a cloth and hid it in a drawer. Take your minna out and let it tell people about the Savior.