Pinecrest Bible Training Center

John 12:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone.

Beginning in 2008 the vision and bible school that God so graciously gave Wade Taylor beginning in 1968 came to an abrupt end, falling into the ground and dying.-

We now wait for God to raise up and bring forth His seed of promise in another, that the vision fail not.

Fall 2002
The Investor
Roger Finn
The parable of the talents, Matthew 25:14-30, ends with “And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

It may seem that Jesus is being unduly harsh on the servant who hid the talent. After all, this servant was motivated by the altogether proper attitude of fear and respect for his master. He knew something valuable had been entrusted to him, and he made sure that no one stole it, and thereby exercised foresight and care to protect the master's property against threats.

He was not irresponsible or profligate as others might have been. He did not spend, steal, or borrow, any of the money. The story never actually says the master told him to invest what he had been given. Is it then fair that the master expected more in return than he gave?

Consider the description of the master: “a hard man who reaped where he did not sow.” In other words, a man who seeks to profit without earning those profits himself. Does it not seem that the master was the one who should have been criticized?

Bible commentators and teachers usually address questions such as this by trying to explain them away. Anything that does not make sense in the Bible is a problem for them. They operate on the principle that the Bible should make logical sense. Therefore they assume more information than the passage supplies. This additional information can then be used to construct a sensible explanation. In the case of this parable, they assume that the servant knew that he was expected to invest the money.

This misses the entire point of the story, which is that we are supposed to feel that the servant was treated unfairly. This story, like many others in the Bible, is intended to force us to deal with the seemingly unfair dealings of God with us. What Jesus is really forcing us to see in this parable is that God, although He is loving and just, sometimes operates in seemingly unfair ways.

In this parable, Jesus is answering the most important question that man has: “What is the purpose for which God has created us?” In the traditional theology of commentators, God expects from us no more than He gives us, since everything comes to us as a gift from God.

However, this parable teaches us that God is not fair, as He expects more from us than he gave to us. In this way, He can be said to “invest” in us. He sends us into the world as a self-centered being who seeks their own satisfaction. But He expects us to leave with much more. He desires us back with “interest.”

We cannot simply consider salvation as the “extra” that God expects us to return to Him with. After our salvation, our life becomes an ongoing process of daily “becoming” more than we were.

If we were addicted to one or more of the things that flesh can become addicted to, the Lord is waiting to see if we will become more than that pitifully addicted body. If we fear sickness or operations, we may be given the opportunity, through the threat or experience of such things, to become something more than that fearful person. If we are in pain or distress, through faith and trust in the Lord, we can become someone more than the unhappy person we were, and not necessarily by having the source of distress vanish.

This principle of “becoming” more than we are is connected to what the Book of Revelation calls “overcoming.” We “become,” as we overcome our nature and circumstances.

This principle is illustrated by the thieves who were crucified with Jesus. A thief’s nature is to live for his own interests, even if it is to the detriment of our possessions. Both thieves in this situation were in extreme pain and distress. The only satisfaction that one thief could find was to taunt Jesus, a man he no doubt saw as a self-appointed Messiah who had received his comeuppance. This behavior is not surprising since it was, after all, his nature.

What is remarkable is the behavior of the other thief. In some wonderful way, his nature changed on that cross and he became more than a self-interested thief. He became one who could offer words of comfort to Jesus. He did not perform any works after this, yet he found himself in Paradise. At the very end of his life, he finally responded to the interests of the “Investor,” and returned to God having become more than he came into this world as.

It is often said that this thief had only salvation. But in his moment of salvation we see a model of the entire Christian life, no matter what its length. His faith saved and changed him. He became more than he was before, as he overcame his nature and circumstances. His opportunities for future change were cut off by his death, as ours will be. If he had more time, his life would have been an opportunity for “becoming” daily.

Each remaining day of our lives is an opportunity for us to “become” more than we are. This is why Jesus often likened us to seeds; as he compared our destiny to a harvest. A farmer is an investor; he sows a tiny seed and waits to reap a bounty.

It is the farmer’s responsibility to sow, it is the seed’s to grow. This is the challenge and adventure that makes us truly alive, and will one day reveal our eternal destiny.


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