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How to Make Wise Investments (2)

 

John 17:1-5, 10; Matthew 25:14-33

 

Jim Davis

 

God created you so he could share his glory with you. God is sharing his glory with you through what he has given you. First of all he made you in his image. What better way to share your glory than to have your offspring to bear your image. You can make wise investments by using whatever you have whether it is great or small to glorify God. After all God has given you all you have so that you can glorify him. 

 

Have you ever had that experience where your children make you proud you had them? They reflect excellence in such a way they that it enhances your image. I have had those other experiences also. It is mind boggling to think the sovereign almighty God created such weak creatures to share his glory. I think the greatest glory we can give to God is to share our weaknesses with him. Have you ever had one of your grown children to call you when they were experiencing trouble? It is a situation where the child is struggling to keep life on an even keel. The grown child calls you asking for advice. I hate to see my children struggling with life’s issues, but it makes me proud when they call just wanting advice, even when I don’t always know how to advise them. I’m sure God feels the same way about his children.

 

Salvation is about sharing in the glory of God, and reflecting his glory back to him. The best investment you can make in life is to invest your life in the One who seeks to glorify you. Jesus came to reveal to us how to receive God’s glorify so that we can reflect the glory back to God. Jesus came to exemplify God’s glory.

 

John 17:1-5

17:1 After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed:

 

"Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. 2 For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. 3 Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. 4 I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. 5 And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began. NIV

 

Jesus prays, “Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do” (John 17:1-5) If you want to make the best investment possible with your life—invest in bringing glory to God. It will pay the highest dividends possible. Keep in mind it is not how much you have to invest, but it hinges on investing what you have. God has given you his glory; invest it back into his purposes for your life. This is how you glorify God.

 

Jesus prayed, “I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do” (John 17:1-5).  His work was to commit God’s work to his disciples. God has given us these people sitting in these pews so that we could help them mature so that they not only reflect his glory but share in his glory. Accomplishing God’s purpose for these people will allow us to share in God’s glory.

 

Jesus continues his intercessory prayer for his disciples saying, “All I have is yours, and all you have is mine.” And glory has come to me through them” (John 17:10 NIV). Jesus is speaking of his disciples. God gave Jesus his disciples, even the bad one, to glorify his Son so that his Son could glorify him. Everything God has given us is given for the same reason. All I have is God’s, and all God has is mine. God desires to give us his glory that we had in Eden before Adam sinned.

 

Make an Investment in God’s Glory

 

The final judgment of God will be about how we invested what God gave us. Have we used the glory he has shared with us to make him proud of us—or to bring him honor and glory? Or did we use it selfishly. To use it selfishly is to use for our personal glory.

 

Matthew 25:14-30

14 "Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. 15 To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. 16 The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. 17 So also, the one with the two talents gained two more. 18 But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master's money.

 

19 "After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20 The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.'

 

21 "His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'

 

22 "The man with the two talents also came. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.'

 

23 "His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'

 

24 "Then the man who had received the one talent came. 'Master,' he said, 'I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.'

 

26 "His master replied, 'You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27 Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.

 

28 "'Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. 29 For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. 30 And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'” NIV

 

Slaves in the ancient world could enjoy considerable responsibility and authority. In the parable of the talents Jesus compared the servants to servants in the kingdom of God. The man going on a journey entrusts his cash assets to three of his slaves who are understood to be almost partners in his affairs and who may share some of his possessions. They are judged by how they used what was entrusted to them. This is a picture of the kingdom of heaven—or should we say the church—after all the church is God’s kingdom on earth.

 

We have been assigned our ministries according to the abilities and gifts God has given us. It is our privilege to serve the Lord and multiply His goods.

 

The three servants fell into two categories: faithful and unfaithful. The faithful servants took their talents and put them to work for their Lord. The unfaithful servant hid his talent in the earth. Instead of using his opportunities, he buried them! He did not purposely do evil. But by doing nothing, he was committing sin and robbing his Lord of service and increase.

 

The third servant was unfaithful and therefore was unrewarded. Because this man was afraid he might fail he never tried to succeed. He feared life and his responsibilities. This paralyzed him with anxiety, so he buried the talent to protect it. The least he could have done was put the money in a bank and collect some interest. There was no real risk in that.

 

What we do not use for the Lord, we are in danger of losing. The master reprimanded the unfaithful, unprofitable servant, and then took his talent from him. The man with the most talents received the extra talent.

 

The servant with one talent was rebuked because he used what God gave him unwisely. It wasn’t that he didn’t have enough, but he thought he didn’t have enough to do what God was asking him to do.

 

I read something on a fortune cookie the other day that made an indelible impression on me. I should have learned it from the Bible for it is a Bible truth. It said, “You will always have enough.” It just depends on whether you want to make it enough; if you are willing to be content with such things as you have.

 

You have all you need to make an investment to glorify God. God has given you enough, if you understand that all he has is yours, and all you have is his. The key is investing it for his glory.

 

Conclusion:

 

Satan became Satan because he sought the glory that belongs to God. He wants it all. Jesus came to glorify his Father by investing the glory given him back into the One who gave it to him. As a result he has been exalted far above Satan, above all.

 

Everything we possess is to be used to glorify God. I think some of us have the idea that we can budget so much for the Lord and spend the rest as we please. The story of talents indicates all we have been given is to be used for the glory of God. We may not be able to put all we have in the contribution basket, but all is to be used for the glory of God. When God is glorified in all we have his law supernatural of mathematics will multiply our increase. Generously investing in God’s glory has everything to do with how much you reap.

 

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