In this parable (Luke 19: 11:26), when the King returned, he required a personal accounting from each of his servants. In the same way, we will all give an account to the King on how well we managed the resources we were given. In Revelation 20, we read about the Great White Throne Judgement in which those whose names are not found written in the Book of Life are cast in the Lake of Fire. That judgement is not for Christians, it’s for those who reject God’s free gift of eternal life.
But as Christians, we will be judged. In 2 Corinthians 5:10 we read, “For we must all appear before the Judgement Seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.” That phrase “judgement seat” is different from the White Throne Judgement of Revelation 20. The word for “judgement seat” is bema. A bema was a raised platform from which prizes were awarded to athletes who competed in competition. The judgement of Revelation 20 is a judgement of punishment for the sin of unbelief. Our judgement at the bema will be a time when the King passes out rewards for how well we invested the gifts we were given.
In the parable, the servants represent those of us who are followers of Jesus. When the king returned, he found two kinds of servants. There were two faithful servants who leveraged the Kings minas to create more value. They were rewarded. Then there was an unfaithful servant who gave his one mina back to the king. The unfaithful servant is a picture of a Christian who is headed for heaven, but because of fear, or a faulty understanding of God, they never really get involved in doing business for God. When asked to sing in the choir, or teach children, or go on a mission trip, their response is usually, “I’m afraid I wouldn’t be very good at doing that.” They are the spectator Christians.
1 Corinthians 3:12-15 says, “The fire will test the quality of each man’s work. If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.”
Again the judgement which Corthians is talking about, is a time where awards are give. This is parable is not saying you will lose your salvation but some unfaithful servants will be like a man who wakes up and his house is on fire and he rushes out with only a sheet wrapped around him. All his possessions are lost but he is saved.
Jesus stated a principle in verse 26 that is the basis for the title of this message. He said, “Everyone who has, more will be given, but as for the one who has [or literally “does”] nothing, even what he has will be taken.” He was saying, “Use It or Lose It!”