Occupy Till I Come
Luke 19:12-13 “He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return.
And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come.”
Of course Jesus is giving this story about His going back to heaven after being raised again; and the ministry He gives His servants here.
“Occupy till I come” is a merchandise term. It is to use what we have to get more, just as in a business.
But the thought here, is that you are gaining for Someone else.
As Christians, we are not our own. We have been bought and redeemed with the high price of Jesus blood. (1 Peter 1:18-19)
And we are given His life and power by the Holy Spirit within. He enables us with His grace. This is the “pound” we are all given as His servants: His faith and grace.
It is all done, as servants of our Lord Jesus Christ, out of love to him.
So how do we “gain” to show our love to Christ?
He has given us faith by the Holy Spirit when we were born again. This faith shows us Christ, so that we can follow Him:
Jesus was obedient to the Father’s Will; so we must be obedient to His Will for us.
He was kind and merciful; so we must show that same kindness and mercy to others.
Jesus was a fighter for the Father’s Way; not holding on to the traditions, when they conflicted with the spirit of God’s laws (example: healing the man with the withered hand on the Sabbath. Tradition said it was “work”. God said it was mercy. Matthew 12:10-13)
He did not turn from the Way to the cross, though it meant betrayal, shame, cruelty, and defilement under our sin. He went and became sin for us, that we might be the righteousness of God in Him. (2 Corinthians 5:21)
We are to use that faith and gain with it:
(2 Peter 1:5-8)
We are to gain (in Peter it says “add to”) virtue, first.
This virtue in the Greek is, “Artea”, or power by the Holy Spirit. The first thing God teaches us is that we are now given power to do, say, and stand, by the Holy Spirit. (It is quite a wonderful thing to realize that God’s Spirit is helping me , now, in this situation of my life!)
The second thing we gain is knowledge. We can not be around Someone, and not come to know Him better.
And as we know Jesus better, we learn more about ourselves; both successes and failures show us, us.
The third thing we gain is temperance. This is to be even-tempered. You learn to not let things “get” to you. To see them as the Lord sees them.
The fourth things is patience. How much in this hurry, hurry world we need this.
Patience with others, and with ourselves. (We do not get discouraged, when we in patience, wait on the Lord, to work things out.)
Godliness comes next: this is growing up into Christ, and taking on the “family of God” resemblance.
Brotherly kindness has to do with our Christian brothers and sisters. (Yes, they can be trying; but with the Holy Spirit’s enabling, we can be considerate to them, even if they are not to us.)
And Charity, or love. And this is to show the same love to others as Christ does to us.
Luke 19:15-16 “And it came to pass, that when he was returned, having received the kingdom, then he commanded these servants to be called unto him, to whom he had given the money, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading.
Then came the first, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained ten pounds.”
This servant had yielded to the Holy Spirit and done all he could for His lovely and blessed Lord.
Luke 19:18 “And the second came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds.”
This servant had difficulties. His gain had been smaller, because of doubts and cares which hindered him at the first; but he had finally overcome by the faith given him, and he had gained five times more than he had been given!
Luke 19:20-21 “And another came, saying, Lord, behold, here is thy pound, which I have kept laid up in a napkin;
For I feared thee, because you art an austere man: and takest up that thou layedst not down, and reapest that thou did not sow.”
What!! This servant did not gain anything! His dishonor was because he wanted to listen to the voice of the devil about God.
The devil convinced the man, that if he did what he was told and tried to gain with the pound he had been given, he might lose it. He told the man he was better off just forgetting about it; because the Lord was a very severe, and demanding God.
But this was not what the Lord had wanted. He wanted this man to use the “pound” (which is the power of the Holy Spirit within), and “gain” in his heart love, peace, and joy in the fellowship with Himself.
This is gaining for the Lord; for we are His inheritance.(Ephesians 1:18)
Luke 19:22-23 “But he saith unto him, Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee, thou wicked servant. Thou knewest that I was an austere man, taking up that I laid not down, and reaping that I did not sow:
Wherefore thou gavest not my money into the bank, that at my coming I might have required mine own with usury?”
Sadly the Lord of this man judges him according to what he had wanted to believe.
And asks him, “If you really were afraid, why didn’t you at least put my money in a bank where I could have received interest from it?”
What the Lord was really asking this man, was:
Why did you not show some interest in My gift of the Holy Spirit? You “laid it up”, or put it out of sight, as though it was a burden instead of a help.
You grieved My Holy Spirit by your hatred of my gift;
So, since you never really had it; you will never have it.
Luke 19:24, 26 “And he said unto them that stood by, Take from him the pound, and give it to him that hath ten pounds.
For I say unto you, that unto everyone which hath, shall be given; and from him that hath not, even that he hath shall be taken away from him.”
There are many who want to appear as the Lord’s servants, which never really love Him, or receive Him into their hearts and lives. (John 1:12)
They want to look good, but never honor the Lord in their hearts. They really hate the thought of doing for the Lord Jesus Christ!
This man was one of these; and he was seen at last for what he was, and was judged by the Lord accordingly.
We are told by the Lord to use His gift of faith by the Holy Spirit and gain joy and peace in believing.