Our Picture of God.



I was reading the story of the 10 talents the other day. It was a story Jesus told. A master of 3 servants gave them each some talents. He told them to use them while he went away. When he came back, the first two servants had used their talents to make more. The master praised them. The third man, however, had buried his talent in the ground. He held it out to the master, but the called him lazy, took the one talent and gave it to the man with 10. The master said the third servant would be thrown out.

Whenever I read about this story in a book or commentary, the authors say the talents represent our abilities and well, talents. In the story the talent is a sum of money. Quite a large sum.

I was meditating on this story and I think the talents represent faith. The man who buried his talent is lost in the end. We are saved through faith and not works, lest any man should boast, the Bible says; any good we do cannot save us.

I think the story points this out in the excuse the man had for why he decided to dig a hole in the ground and throw the money in there. He said, “Master, I knew you were a harsh man, harvesting crops you didn’t plant and gathering crops you didn’t cultivate.”

“I knew you were a harsh man.”  Is God harsh? Does he hover over us waiting for us to mess up so he can keep us out of heaven? No. He is not like that. He is hovering to see how many he can get into heaven. (Right here I could quote hundreds of Bible verses on God’s love, but I hope you will look them up yourself.)

The man said, “I know you reap where you did not sow.” What kind of farmer would expect his crop to grow if he sowed nothing in the field? Hmm, a crazy farmer, that’s for sure. This man seemed to be saying God asked the impossible from people. Is that true? No. God says we can do all things through Christ, who gives us strength. Jesus said, “Nothing will be impossible for you.” And, “My yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

This man did not know who God was. And his basic problem is he didn’t try to find out. He put his head in a hole in the ground. He didn’t want to hear the gospel and he didn’t try to seek God. He didn’t ask for God’s strength or for Jesus’ righteousness to cover him.

The Bible says we will find God when we seek him with all our hearts. Jesus said eternal life means knowing him and his Father in heaven. Jesus also said he will say to many at the judgement, “I never knew you.”

There is a reason it is vital to know God; He is the way, the truth and the life. Our picture of God will determine how we act and how we treat others. If we see God as harsh, we may think it is fine for us to be harsh. But if we see God as someone who forgives us 70 x 7 times a day, then we will forgive also.

The best reason to know God is to understand the plan of salvation. We were lost, but through Jesus’ death, we are found. We can never be perfect and sinless; Jesus was perfect and sinless. As a man, he took our place; he stood in the breech between us and God. God’s law says the penalty for sin is death. He could not change his law, but he could die in our place and satisfy the justice his law demands. We are covered by Jesus’ life and death. He is called, “The Lord, our righteousness.”

8 thoughts on “Our Picture of God.

  1. So true. Keep the digital ink flowing!

    You know, I never realized this or saw this before, but the Book of Psalms chapter 69 brings something very powerful to light concerning Jesus’ state of mind while dying on the cross. Jesus was very much human and like ourselves. Why or how do we know? This verse –

    Psalm 69:20 says this: Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity….

    Jesus was looking for someone to show him “pity”, care, concern, and ……. “love”? Jesus did not die from blood loss. Jesus did not die of asphyxiation. Jesus died from a broken heart – a heart broken by reproach and shame. Oh, how he loves you and me, oh how he loves you and me. He gave his life, what more could he give ……

    Though you might find this enlightening is some way. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am confused about your statement that faith, not works, saves us. Where did you get that? Chapter 2 in the book of James teaches the opposite. He says that faith doesn’t profit us anything without works. Indeed, verse 17 says, “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.” If faith is all that matters, what was the point of Christ’s life, or our own lives? Christ came to earth and He DID. He did’t just say, “Well, I’m the son of God, and I have faith so I’ll just sit on my butt and do nothing until it’s time for me to die.” His life was an example of good works, and aren’t we supposed to follow His example? You can sit around and talk all you want about how you have faith that you’re going to be saved, but unless you follow Christ’s example and Do–keep His commandments, help your fellow men, your faith is dead. It means nothing without works to back it up. So yes, I’m just confused about this and where you got that idea. Any way you can explain it to me?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I can. “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:8-10 God does the works.

      “We who are Jews by birth and not sinful Gentiles know that a person is not justified by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith ind Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified.” Galatians 2:15, 16
      We are never, ever saved by what we do.

      Faith, works and every good thing is a gift from God. When we give our lives to God, he changes our hearts and minds, and without even trying, we begin to do the works of God because He does it through us. Even Jesus himself did not do good works by himself. He lived as we must live, totally dependent on t he Father. He said, “Of my own self, I can do nothing. John 5:30

      “So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise.” John 5:19

      The whole book of Galations explains how we are not saved by keeping the law of God. If we could do it, Jesus didn’t need to come here, live a perfect life, and die in our place.

      Thinking we can be saved by what we do is the reason for the reformation snd forming of Protestantism. Martin Luthor loved God, and wanted to be saved, but he kept thinking of what a sinner he was. Yes, and he was! But he found the truth in the Bible that he was free from the guilt and condemnation of the law. This is the “Good News” of the gospel of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.


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