Parable: Servants watch; Will God come as he told you, or will he come as a thief?

I am a retired pastor of the Church of God (Tennessee).
My name is Isaac Livingston. I am from Neyyoor India

Email: Pastor True Gospel


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1. Jesus tells two parables, nested as one, about his servants.

Jesus tells parables to all people, to Pharisees, and to his disciples. So, it is important to study the parable with its context. Now we are going to study Luke 12:35-48. This is a popular parable in our churches, since it is about the second coming of Jesus Christ. So, we study this with curiosity for excitement. It appears as one parable, but it is actually two; Verses 35-38 is one, 39&40 is another. In 41, Peter asked whether this parable is to his disciples or is it to all people. In 42-48, Jesus answers his question, and explains the parables. The first parable is about his good servants, it is in 42-44; and the second is about his evil servants, it is in 45-48. Even though these two parables are about the servants of God, preachers make the two parables as one, and apply it to all people. We are excited to study the parable since we think that it is about us. But, it is not about all of us.

2. Good servants knows the time when the Lord is coming.

God divides people as good and evil. There are good and evil among his servants also. Good people love the strict truth, and evil people love compromised truth, which are lies. The first parable is for the good and the second is for the evil servants. Let us see the first; it is in 35-38. "35 Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning;" Loins girded up, is symbolic for getting ready to work as workers wear safety belt before starting work. Your lights burning is that your holy spirit is shining and it leads your life. "36 And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately." It is only one day assignment, and it is not an indefinite suspense assignment. Your master goes to attend a wedding; when he comes back, be awake and open the door for him. It is clear instruction. "38 says that he shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch." So, he will come in the night between 9-12; if he missed it, he will definitely come before 3:00 AM. So, the Lord told the time to his servant very clearly. It is to wait for the master for six hours the most, at one particular night. It is not a big deal. Anybody can do it. But the bible teachers make it as a mystery.

3. Good servants obey their Master; They receive rewards.

let us learn one more thing from the eastern culture pertained to wedding feasts. If a respectable person, or a close relative, attended a marriage; when he returns, they will send enough food from the feast, with all delicacies with him, for those who are in the house, who could not attend the marriage. So, when the Lord is coming back, he will come with feast food. So, when he reaches home there will be a feast in his house. It is of the eastern culture. "37 Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them." The master is full, from the marriage feast. So, he took this time to feed his servants to make them happy. So, he serves the feast himself. Further, it is symbolic to the feast of God in heaven. This is to the servants of God, but not to the common people. But bible teachers teach this as it belongs to everybody. It is made clear in the next verses. "41 Then Peter said unto him, Lord, speakest thou this parable unto us, or even to all? 42 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season?" Jesus tells Peter that it is to his stewards, who are chosen servants, who were appointed to take care of other disciple in his absence. It is as in "Ephesians 4:. 11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:" If they did a faithful job as good stewards, not only they are given the feast, but they will also rule in the Millennium. It is in Luke 12:43&44. "43 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. 44 Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath." It is Millennium for God's stewards, but not for common people.

4. Evil Stewards do not know the time when the Lord will come.

There is another scenario to this. The Lord told his servants the definite time when he will come back. But the evil servants did not pay attention to what the master said. These are preachers, who do not care for the truth, but they twist the word of God to make their own version. "39 And this know, that if the goodman of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken through. 40 Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not." Jesus tells that they do not know the exact time of the coming of the Lord, since they ignored the truth. Jesus explains the situation of the evil servants, comparing them to a man, who will meet a thief in an unexpected time. God did not say in this context, that he will come like a thief. But it is the version of the bible teachers. And, they are the evil servants, who do not know when the Lord will come. But they preach that Jesus comes as a thief at any time, and teach that we must be ready for, 24/7, 365 days, and all the nonsense. They are evil stewards, they do not pay attention to the word of God, which is the truth. They abuse the church with false teachings, deceive people and exploit them. "45 But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken; 46 The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers." These people will be destroyed at the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ in the lake of fire.

5. Different levels of severity to punish; it is according to their works.

"47 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes." Among the stewards of God, there are false prophets, false evangelists, false preachers, false pastors and false teachers; and they all will be punished very severely in eternity. "48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: etc." Common evil people will also be punished, but not as much as evil stewards. Much is given to the stewards; so, much is required from them. So, their punishment will be more severe. "James 3:1 My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation." It better not to preach or teach, if you have not studied the word from the spirit of God. If you have studied the word of God from commentaries, from books of theologians, from bible schools, or from such, please do not teach or preach. If you do, God will punish you severely. Love the truth, love righteousness, obey God, and then the spirit of God will teach you. Learn well from God. Then, preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. Be of God, truth, and righteousness. Then, God will prosper what you do.

Note: If any point needs explanation, OR, if you find an error according to scripture,
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