The Contrast of Two Slaves: Matthew 24:45-51
““45) Who then is the faithful and sensible slave whom his master put in charge of his household to give them their food at the proper time? 46) Blessed is that slave whom his master finds so doing when he comes. 47) Truly I say to you that he will put him in charge of all his possessions. 48) But if that evil slave says in his heart, ‘My master is not coming for a long time,’ 49) and begins to beat his fellow slaves and eat and drink with drunkards; 50) the master of that slave will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour which he does not know, 51) and will cut him in pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Matthew‬ ‭24‬:‭45‬-‭51‬
Jesus now shares a contrast of two slaves. Each was put in charge of his Masters household to provide food and care for those under his care in the perceived absence of his Master.
One was faithful, diligent and occupied with His Masters work. He carried out his charge with honor and respect as if his Master was present. Jesus pointed out that when the Master returns, he will be honored, blessed and promoted.
The second was negligent, abusive and self indulgent. He beat and exploited those under his care. He celebrated his Masters absence. Jesus called Him an evil slave and pointed out that severe consequences awaited him upon His Masters return.
So what can we conclude for this story? Jesus was making a strong statement to His disciples. The focus is not to be on figuring out the day or hour of the Masters return. That is a wrong pursuit and mindset. The goal is to faithfully carry out the Masters work no matter when he returns.
Jesus calls us to love Him and serve Him with all of our heart. He calls us to focus on doing our absolute best with the gifts, positions and work entrusted to us. He calls us to serve in His absence just like we would in His presence.
A number of years ago, it dawned on me that because we are living in the age of the indwelling Holy Spirit, He is not absent. He is absolutely present with each one of us in the person of the Holy Spirit. He has come to set up His abode “in” each one of us. He is here to lead, guide, teach and empower every born-again believer. We should live, serve and abide in the conscious awareness of the presence God.
When I started grasping this point, the day and hour of the bodily return of Jesus became irrelevant. I am as much His bond-servant now as I will be when He returns. I enjoy intimate fellowship as much with Him now as I will when He returns. I look forward to the face to face revelation and worship of Jesus Christ at His return, but I enjoy spirit to Spirit revelation and worship with Him now. I am working to remove all barriers of abiding in His presence now.
I have come to realize that He does not view me as a slave in our current relationship, He views me as a beloved son. I am continually invited into His presence. There is no limit to the breath and length and hight and depth of the relationship I can enjoy with Him now. (See Ephesians 3:16-19) I can be filled up to all the fulness of God right now!
I have put aside the constraints of theological institutions, doctrines of men, ideologies, traditions, denominations or the expectations of others to pursue personal intimacy with Jesus Christ. I am engaged in a relentless pursuit of Jesus Christ through His Spirit.
For the child of God who has entered into constant communion with Jesus through His Spirit, the only thing that will change at the return of Christ is His address. It will change from heaven to earth. His reign on earth will radically affect human civilization, but it will not change the potential depth of our communion with Him through the Spirit. Don’t wait for His return to draw near to Him or serve Him. Pursue Him now!
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global