The place to start is to review the definition of
stewardship. A steward is a person who manages and administrates what
has been entrusted to him by another. In this case, a steward is a person who
manages what has been entrusted to him/her by God. As I have noted in the sermon
titles above, God has entrusted us with our lives, our talents,
our time, and our money.
There is another thing that I want to point out before we
move on to today’s message. Remember that there are several key principles upon
which stewardship is established. Two key principles are these –
. God Owns All Things.
Psalms 24:1 says, "The earth is the LORD'S, and
the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein."
-- Luke 19:13 "And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten
pounds, and said unto them, Occupy (= use what you possess) till I come."
2. Every believer has the personal responsibility to manage,
supervise, and administer all that God has given him/her to the glory of God
Today’s message is titled The Stewardship of Talents.
I feel it is necessary for me to make a brief explanation of
the title of today’s message, particularly the word talents. I am
not using this word in the specific sense. A talent was a measure of weight. We
see this in Revelation 16:21 – "And there fell upon men a great hail out
of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent: and men
blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was
exceeding great." The Greek word translated talent is ταλαντιαῖος
talantiaios (tal-an-tee-ah'-yos). According to my sources, a talent weighed
between 108 and 130 pounds. I am not using talent in this way.
A Talent, among the Hebrews, was also a gold coin, the same
with a shekel of gold, also called a stater. We see the word stater
translated "the piece of money" in Matthew 17:27, that was to be found in
the fishes mouth. I am not using talent to refer to a coin.
However, I am using talent in a metaphorical way referring to the
gifts, talents, abilities and possessions the Lord has given to each of us.
While Matthew 25:14-28, the parable of the talents, uses the word
talents to indicate and amount of money, the purpose of the parable is a
metaphoric one, showing us that God holds us responsible to use our gifts,
talents, abilities and goods to advance His purpose and plan.
The Stewardship of Talents Is Built Upon The Fact That God
Expects All Christians To Produce Good Works
- We are to be fruitful in every good work –
"That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful
in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;"
Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Paul wrote to the
Colossian believers telling that it pleases the Lord when they are
fruitful in every good work. The word translated fruitful is the
Greek word karpoforew karpophoreo (kar-pof-or-eh’-o) means to bear fruit.
Believers are trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord. Good works are
the fruit, which, under the influence of divine grace, we are to bring forth.
Remember, fruitfulness depends on our being ingrafted into Christ the true vine,
and deriving life, sap, and nourishment from him. Turn with me to
"I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him,
the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing."
Are you abiding in Christ? We are to be fruitful stewards of
the all the talents God has given us. We are to bear fruit with our talents.
- We are to be established in every good work –
2 Thessalonians 2:17
"Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work."
The English word stablish is a translation of
an interesting Greek word, sthrizw sterizo (stay-rid’-zo). It means to
turn resolutely in a certain direction. We are told we are to
be stablished in the word. That is, we are to be turned
resolutely or be fully committed to the Word of God. But, the verse also
says that we are to be stablished in the work of God. This
implies that we are committed to and persevere in using our talents (the gifts,
talents, abilities and goods) God has given us for good.
- We must diligently follow in every good work –
1 Timothy 5:10
"Well reported of for good works; if she have brought up
children, if she have lodged strangers, if she have washed the saints’ feet, if
she have relieved the afflicted, if she have diligently followed every good
When you read the context of this verse, it is clear to see
that the verse specifically deals with widows who are worthy of church help.
However, It is revealing to see the standard used to determine a worthy widow.
She must have "diligently followed every good work." The English phrase
diligently followed is a translation of but one Greek word -
epakolouyew epakoloutheo ep-ak-ol-oo-theh’-o, which means to walk in
the footsteps of, that is to say, she devoted herself to doing good.
In the earlier part of the verse some of these "good works" are itemized: she
reared her children properly, feeding, clothing and teaching them. We see that
she was hospitable, giving housing, food and drink to people she did not know.
She also humbly "washed the saints’ feet. This indicates that she served as
needed, even in the most humble tasks. We are to follow her example and use our
talents and energies to do good, as the passage says, diligently follow…good
- We must provoke others to good works – Hebrews 10:24
"And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good
The word provoke in our current usage has a negative
connotation. However, in this context provoking other believers is a good
thing. The word is a translation of the Greek word paroxusmov paroxusmos (par-ox-oos-mos’)
and it means to sharpen, to stimulate, to incite or excite.
Believers are called upon to arouse, excite and to call to action other
believers to love (agaph agape) and to good works. We are to take
note of other believers spiritual welfare, and when perceive them to be
calloused and lethargic in the area of love and good works, we are to try to
stir them up to perform actions of love and good works.
Remember, God expects all Christians to produce good works.
- We are to be fruitful in every good work. We are to bear
fruit for God with everything He has given to us.
- We are to be established in every good work. We are to be
committed to and persevere in using our talents that (the gifts, abilities and
goods) God has given us for good.
- We must provoke others to good works. We are to try to stir
them up to perform good works.