In Matthew 25, Jesus is advising us that the Kingdom of Heaven is like a man who gave his servants a huge amount of money, called “talents”. What’s a Talent? Well, several chapters earlier (in Matthew 20) Jesus told a parable of workers hired to work in a vineyard. We’re told in that parable that a Denarius was a day’s wages. And we know from other sources that one talent was worth 6000 Denarii. Doing the math: It would take a person working 5 to 6 days a week for 20 years or more to earn one talent. So, if we take the average U.S. salary $30,000 a year for the next 20 years – that would make a talent worth around $600,000. That’s just one talent. Does that sound like a lot of money to you?
So while the talents referred to in this parable may not be the same talents we understand in English as skills. The intent the parable is much the same. Each of the servants received a task they could do. Each of them was awarded something that the Master wanted taken care of. Each of the servants were given a responsibility the Master believed they could handle.
In this parable, we seen that the first two servants were determined to make a profit; while third was determined to not take a loss. The first two were willing to work hard and take risks; the third took no risks. The first two received the gift; the third refused the gift. The first two viewed the talents as an opportunity; the third saw it has as a problem. The first two invested; the other one wasted. The first two saw a blessing; the third saw a burden. 1 Peter 4:10 commands us to, “use whatever gift you have received”.
As disciples, we ought to be someone who recognizes our God-given talents, and then works our upmost to develop them into skills that we can use to accomplish God’s purposes.