In the Parable of the Talents why did the third servant prequalify his actions by saying the master was a demanding person, harvesting where you did not plant and gathering where you did not scatter. What made him so afraid that he buried his talent in the ground?
I always look for threads with few posts, so here I am.
Well, this man’s attitude is the one that Jesus criticizes, for his inaction. It can symbolize different things, but I think it refers to one’s receiving the gospel but not spreading to others, in some fashion.
That’s where I also jump in to say that I think sending money to help the missions or for relief in other countries is productive in supporting those vast missionary needs. Pick a charity and stay with it – food for the poor, american leprosy mission, aid to the church in need, sudan relief, etc. Be useful to the Lord, especially with whatever time, treasure, or talent you have.
I think the parable was to show us that the servant knew the master, he had been given the message. It should not have been a surprise to him that the master would be upset if he did not receive some sort of return on his investment. That sort of relationship can then be transferred to the spiritual aspect: We have received the message, we know what is expected of us. If we go off and do our own thing and do not follow the instructions of the Master, if we do not produce some fruit (even if it’s just a meager amount), if there is no fruit, then we too cannot then expect an increase of rewards but a stripping of them.
What a great thought provoking question!
I think the man knew what he had done was wrong and was making his excuse to his master.
As to what made the man so afraid that he buried his talent, I think the author used fear like a variable in an equation. It could be any reason for not using one’s God given treasure to His liking.
D-R Bible, Haydock Commentary:
Ver. 18. He that had received the one. The man who hid this one talent, represents all those who, having received any good quality, whether mental or corporal, employ it only on earthly things. (St. Gregory) — Origen is also of the same sentiment: if you see any one, says he, who has received from God the gift of teaching and instructing others to salvation, yet will not exercise himself in this function, he buries his talent in the ground, like this unworthy servant, and must expect to receive the like reward.