Is the parable of talent referring to good works needed to get to heaven?

Is the parable of talent referring to good works needed to get to heaven?

Posted by fact-s.net

What do “talents” refer to? The English word “talent” is a translation from the Greek word “talanton” (5007/5342). This means “a balance (as supporting weights), i.e. (by implication) a certain weight (and thence a coin or rather sum of money) or “talent”:–talent.”


  1. the scale of a balance, a balance, a pair of scales
  2. that which is weighed, a talent
    1. a weight varying in different places and times
    2. a sum of money weighing a talent and varying in different states and according to the changes in the laws regulating currency
      1. the Attic talent was equal to 60 Attic minae or 6000 drachmae
      2. a talent of silver in Israel weighed about 100 pounds (45 kg)
      3. a talent of gold in Israel weighed about 200 pounds (91 kg)

Matthew 25:15 Greek five talents … two talents … one talent; also throughout this parable; a talent was worth about 20 years of a day laborer’s wage.

Compare NIV and NKJV about the narrative.

In short, a “talent” is the value of “currency or worth” of labor or gift given to a person. In spiritual essence, it is the “energy/power” given to a person by God through “in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit “.

Regarding Matt. 25:14-30,, the servants were given “talents or bag of gold” to use as they please to gain something from it. One didn’t use it to gain and the value stayed the same. The message was to use it for good and not to be dormant. Therefore, this narrative refers to “good works” emanating from the “energy/power” of the Holy Spirit “. Therefore the short answer is, Yes they are required for salvation, that gets to heavenly kingdom of God

But, these good works must not emanate from us, flesh-composed body. They should not be “our” works per se, like Job ( a perfect and upright man who finally acknowledged his blindness) or atheists doing good. But works or “fruits” must come from the empowerment of the Holy Spirit that we merely expressed through and shown by “our works”.

As such, no one will boast (Eph. 2:9). By faith of Jesus, it took his death and resurrection for us to receive (Jn. 14:16) the in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit. This is a great gift, by the grace of God, to have and we must show “fruits of the Spirit”(Gal. 5:22-23).

Any good work that anyone can do by himself is as “filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6) and not consistent or reliably sustainable as our “flesh is weak(Matthew 26:41).


Eph. 2:10For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”

Notice the example of Jesus at the garden of Gethsemane:
He withdrew about a stone’s throw and prayed, ‘Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will but yours be done’” (Luke 22:41-42). Matthew records Jesus as making his request of the Father twice: “Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken away from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will’” (Matthew 26:39) and “He went away a second time and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done’” (Matt. 26:42). Mark records his prayer in a positive way, “‘Abba, Father,’ he said, ‘everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will” (Mark 14:36).

While not “his will”, he expressed the “will of the Father” through his works empowered by the Holy Spirit. Similarly, we are the “vessel” through which the “fruits of the Holy Spirit” will be manifested. The “fruits/works” are of the Holy Spirit, even if we did those “works” ourselves.

Beware, we might be cut off as in:
Matt. 7:19Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.”

Dan. 4:14He called in a loud voice: ‘Cut down the tree and trim off its branches; strip off its leaves and scatter its fruit. Let the animals flee from under it and the birds from its branches

See also Matt. 3:10; Lu. 3:9, 13:7; John 15:2, John 15:6;

We need to be overcomers, as in Rev. 3:5He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life.

Summary

Yes, the “talents”(metaphor for in-dwelling of Holy Spirit) have to be used and give rise to good works/action guided and empowered by the Holy Spirit. Without these “fruits of the Holy Spirit”, the Holy Spirit will be taken away from us. Without being “overcomers” we will be “cutoff” and will not reach the heavenly kingdom on earth.

God bless🙏😇👍

Hyperlink version revised and posted: November 17, 2020. Note: Original post on 10/20/2015

Critique is welcome at foundationacts@yahoo.com

Induced Abortion and After-Birth Infanticide

The previous post on “when does human life begin”, focused on how biblically it is defined by God. Life is conferred only when the “spirit-of-man” aka. “breath-of-life” was given after delivery from the womb. Any intra-uterine fetal activity is a function of intrinsic ability of cells/tissues to express themselves as programmed into them, like automaticity, rhythm, reflexes,etc. which are expressions of kinetic from potential energies. No activity from machine or robot that moves as programmed, can be considered as “living”. Any major genetic disorder not compatible with growth and development to maturity in-utero, will have spontaneous abortion. The “mature delivered baby” is alive as evidenced only with spontaneous breathing. Assisted breathing given to babies that are born is effective only when it leads to spontaneous breathing; otherwise, when the baby does not breathe despite artificial means, cyanosis supervenes that leads to stillbirth.

With that said, does this knowledge of “when does human life begin” justify induced abortion or after-birth infanticide? For the answer, this biblical research may help as a follow-up on this subject.

Definition of induced Abortion and after-birth Infanticide

These are very sensitive topics of discussion especially at this time of passionate pro-life and pro-choice advocates. Violence occurs as a result of differences in how people understand “when human life begins”. Pro-choice advocates maintain that the “fetus is still part of her body, the mother owns the fetus and therefore can rightfully decide” what to do with… and the argument continues. Is this thinking a justification for killing the fetus?

To begin with, abortion is intrauterine termination of pregnancy; it can be spontaneous or induced. It is induced abortion that is anathema to pro-lifers On the other hand, after-birth infanticide is termination of a newborn baby’s life when parent/s decided for that to happen.

Back from the future

Abortion is not a recent phenomenon; it happened in ancient times way before the present generation. Taking pregnancy through maturity is not an easy task. And, even more taxing to an elderly woman like Sarah who was already menopausal when she became pregnant with Isaac as in Genesis 18:9-15. What would have happened if Sarah aborted Isaac? This is an unthinkably dark scenario as Jacob and others would not have been born.

This then takes us to Mary, mother of Jesus. Remember, Mary visited her cousin Elizabeth, who, in her old age, was 6-month pregnant with John the Baptist as narrated in Luke 1. In Luke 1:41-45 , it stated that 6-month John leaped in Elizabeth’s womb as soon as she heard Mary’s greeting. Through Elizabeth’s ear, signals were sent to her own parts in the womb that the fetus “leaped for joy”.

Can you imagine if the prophet John was aborted instead of growing, developing to maturity, then delivered and breathed spontaneously? There would not have been a John who baptized Jesus with water at River Jordan!

Similarly, Bible interpretations that support abortion have to be reconsidered .

The point is this:

While the fetus in the womb are still parts/property and owned by a mother and not “alive as defined by God”, that does not give anyone a justification to commit induced and forceable abortion. Except for an emergent choice between life of mother or “fetus”(her parts”), choose the life of the mother. Besides that, there are numerous options other than killing the fetus. Even a “child born deaf and blind” has a future and for the glory of God, as in John 9:3. Jesus’ miracle to restore this physically“deaf-and-blind” child, is a prelude to spiritual enlightenment of those who are “deaf and blind” spiritually” through the in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit.

The best option is still to refrain from pre-marital sex, sexual immorality or unplanned pregnancy. Even those with late-onset genetic disease like Stephen Hawkin, deserved to live.

From the Source, may the Father God bless you with the “in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit to have wisdom and guidance to make the “right-choice”.

God Bless🙏😇👍

Original hyperlink version posted on November 4, 2020 (a day after Election2020).

Please double tap hyperlink for references.

Critique is welcome at foundationacts@yahoo.com.

Destiny of Man

Why am I here? Did I exist because of evolution or creation? Why was I born? Is there any purpose in my life? These are questions people are asking themselves for guidance and direction in seeking self-worth, value and introspection.

Since the average lifespan vs life expectancy is about 70-72 years, (although it has changed but basically about the same for 2,000 years) is that all there is to our longevity? Is our life on earth limited to a finite duration of time? Do telomeres predict our death? After death, then what? Should one care about whether there is life after death?

Different religions, whether Buddhism, Hinduism, Muslim, Judaism, Christianity , etc., profess that there is an after-life, although they differ in details. Knowing what the future has in store for us, brings perspective to how we value our present life and helps us understand our responsibilities and obligations, as well as what attitude and behavior we all need to adopt and express.

Creation or Evolution?

Since time immemorial, philosophers, seers and thinkers come and go. Yet, no reliable answer from them to these questions is forthcoming. Granted, they are all intellectually endowed and respected by the society and era that they lived in. Nevertheless, they are all farther from the truth for reasons that are obvious. Introspection and use of their own judgments and human abilities to search for answers, only left them with more questions. Answers to these pivotal issues are not forthcoming if we anchor our existence on evolution. Logic and wisdom lead us to a Creator. Had they turned to their Maker, their eyes could have been opened to the truth. For “…my thoughts are not your thoughts…. my ways are higher than your ways..Isa:55:8-9. Also, isn’t it logical to listen to the Creator, as described in Job Chapters 38 and 39? We listen to others and believe their writings, scientific or not, yet why is it repulsive to believe in those who personally witnessed God?

Source of Education:

Learning comes either passive or active. The active mechanism to learn is via our sensory somatic experience, viz., fire burns or heat is hot, when one touches a burning wood or the light of a candle. Also active learning comes from what we see and hear from a primary source and/or personally experienced. Passive learning on the other hand is when what we see and hear are from secondary sources, e.g., being instructed/lectured that an item is in fact hot and does burn, without actual personal experience. This is a first lesson in faith/trust in God who tells us the truth, instead of relying on our own finite brains, feelings, sight or hearing. Adam/Eve chose to learn the hard and active learning way by an actual experience of eating the “forbidden fruit, instead of heeding the verbal admonition of God against it, via the passive learning process. They both paid an ultimate and heavy price of eternal death for their bad choice. Sometimes, it is wiser to learn from an instructor than experience the aftermath of a bad choice and decision. Whether one believes it or not, there is a living God who is our Creator, who totally and completely knows us and has plans for us from the very beginning. As this subject is about destiny, it is vital to go to the instruction book of our Maker, the Holy Bible, for an eye-opening reality. And, there is no better place to start than from the beginning.

Sequence and Pattern:

In the book of Genesis, it is essential to consider the pattern being set by GOD/YHVH-ELOHIM in the process of creation, viz.,

1. That first, there was darkness followed by light… non-living things were created, then living things, as after death will follow life.

Notice, that….darkness was upon the face of the deep… then there was light. He first created non-living things, e.g. the planets and stars of multiple galaxies, then the living things, e.g. plants and animals. These are facts as narrated in the Holy Scriptures. But, what is the truth behind these events? It appears that this narrative has spiritual and functional meaning. GOD is showing this pattern of death (darkness, non-living) to be followed by life everlasting, that is to say that there is hope of life (light) after death (darkness, chaos ), in the same pattern that after lies, deception, confusion, and different interpretations will come the truth…that from mortality (death) will follow immortality (life forever)…that our current physical nature is temporal and will change to spiritual which is everlasting. Isn’t this a very powerful message of hope and renewal being taught to all of us from the beginning of time? Yes, our destiny is not eternal death and oblivion but eternal life.

2. Every living creature reproduces its own kind or likeness or image…..foundation of genetics.

Notice that before there was any other living entity, GOD/YHVH and angelic beings were already there as the only living entities ( see also fact-s.net/2011/05/21/what-is-god/). As the scripture says “…In the beginning, God created…”

To establish this pattern of reproducing like-for-like, kind-for-kind, class-for-class, and same image-for-image, GOD created the plants and animals. He showed that they can only reproduce after their own kind or likeness or image. And, within this concept is “adaptation changes depending on stimuli. After the plants and animals were created, at that particular moment, there were only three living classes of creatures, viz., GOD, plants and animals. After the principle of genetics was established that plants and animals can only reproduce after their own kind or likeness or image, what did GOD say?

Let us make man/kind in our image, after our own likeness…”

The plant-kind can only give rise to a plant, as the animal-kind can only reproduce the same kind. The same is true with the GOD-kind. Yes, God the Father, through man-Jesus, is reproducing himself thru the creation of man, human beings, flesh-composed, mortals. Man was created in the image of God..in the GOD-KIND, the highest and ultimate class of living entity. Not even was man ranked among the angels as Paul emphasized . Man, although currently lower than angels, in the future will be higher than them. Starting from a “template“/temple of flesh-composed, the “spirit of man” the breath of life” was put in there to experience life. This flesh-composed body is only temporary and will die. Subsequently, those who have “fruits of the HOLY SPIRIT and are “overcomers” will be resurrected with “spirit-composed bodies”, immortals with eternal life.

So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being the last Adam, a life-giving spirit”. The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. The first man was of the dust of the earth, the second man from heaven. As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the man from heaven, so also are those who are of heaven (1 Corinthians 15:45-48).

This is indeed an awesome destiny for man to be in the GOD-KIND,, or KINGDOM of GOD, not Plant-kingdom nor Animal-kingdom but GOD-FAMILY…GOD-KINGDOM. No wonder Christ prayed that man be”ONE IN HIM, as he is one in the Father, that Paul testified that we will be”like his glorious body…” that this flesh will change in a “twinkling of an eye …” in the future to become spirit, from mortal to immortality…that man will “have dominion “…”overall” … as GOD is over all. Yes, GOD is a family, with Jesus as quoted by Paul, the “…first of the firstfuits… “the firstborn among many brothers and sisters(brethren)” with Jesus as our elder brother, and his/our FATHER being all-in-all and above-all. And to think that this was all planned even before the creation of the world, before you and I were born, before anyone committed evil nor has done any good work, is a remarkable and compelling proof of GRACE and unwarranted GIFT to be in the GOD-KINGDOM and GOD-FAMILY.

In Psalms 8:3-9, this was alluded to:

When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? You have made them a little lower than the angels and crowned them with glory and honor. You made them rulers over the works of your hands; you put everything under their feet: all flocks and herds, and the animals of the wild, the birds in the sky, and the fish in the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas. LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!”

Notice that this was narrated as past events that never happened yet at that time suggesting an assured and definitive thing to occur although contextually still futuristic. Anybody living at that time will be hard-pressed to understand just by reading these passages. Centuries later, it took the in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit to grasp its awesome meaning and significance. Truly, “the blind shall see and the deaf shall hear” as written in Isaiah 29:18.

The Meaning of Hebrews 2

As enlightened by the in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit, Paul explained Psalms 8 further in Hebrews 2:5-18, See also parallel version NIV/KJV for comparison of translations

“It is not to angels that he has subjected the world to come, about which we are speaking. But there is a place where someone has testified: “What is mankind that you are mindful of them, a son of man (man-Jesus)that you care for him? You made them a little lower than the angels; you crowned (past tense though futuristic) them with glory and honor and put everything under their feet.”In putting (progressive tense) everything under them, God left nothing that is not subject to them. Yet at present we do not see everything subject to them. But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God(Father), for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through what he suffered. Both the one who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters. He says, “I will declare your name to my brothers and sisters; in the assembly I will sing your praises.” And again, “I will put my trust in him.”And again he says, “Here am I, and the children God has given me.” Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death (died as a man) he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham’s descendants. For this reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.”

From the preceding, one can see that the endpoint of this prophecy is about “the world to come” and that “it will not be subject to angels but to mankind”. And this prediction started to unfold when man-Christ Jesus came.

Jesus is the “trailblazer/captain/pioneer” from which this prophecy comes to unravel. He is the first human (a trailblazer) to become immortal. through a process of death, resurrection and receiving-then-giving to us this empowering in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit. And, the finality is still future as “creation of the kingdom of God is still ongoing, so as to bring “many sons and daughters to glory”, in the “same family, to call us “brothers and sisters “

SUMMARY:

Our destiny far-surpasses our imagination (2 Cor. 4:17-18; Eph. 3:20.) Our flesh-composed body is temporal, merely a template. It has the spirit of man which is a “temple”, the holy-of-holies” for the Holy Spirit to dwell ( Acts 1:8; Lev.16:2, Matt. 27:51) so that man will be “begotten son/ child of God”. At the resurrection, this flesh-composed body will change to“born son “, “from mortality to immortality” from carnal to spiritual as “sons/children of God”. What happened to Jesus from flesh-composed man to now spirit-composed will be our destiny. He is the precursor, the pioneer/trailblazer for all of us. He is our Elder-brother, head of the church/body and we “are one”. Indeed, grace and love manifested !

Praise be to God the Father who planned and to God the Son who executed this glorious work to fulfill this destiny of man.

God Bless🙏😇👍

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Critique is welcome at foundationacts@yahoo.com

CONTACT: For any questions, comments, or article contribution for publication, please e-mail foundationacts@yahoo.com

Original post:06/27/2003

Reposted:5/21/2011

Revised:4/24/2017

Revised:5/13/2018 Happy Mother’s Day

Hyperlink version posted 3/12/19

Revision posted November 3, 2020 ELECTION DAY. God bless all voters and candidates 🙏👍

N.B. All revisions and postings kept the original version; additions and edits were to enhance and explain better the context of the narratives.