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  • William T. Howe Ph.D.

September 7, 2023

The Bible Edge

Everyone needs an Edge, Believers can have a Bible Edge

Matthew 25:27

Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury.

In this Parable of the Talents our Lord is using something we can see and understand, money, to teach an unseen spiritual truth. That is what any parable is all about, teaching spiritual truths that are invisible yet profound. Consider today’s verse, probably any adult can understand money (dollars), usury (interest), and exchangers (which are likened to modern day bankers). The coming of the Lord is understood as His soon return to earth as promised in the Scriptures. The term mine own is understood as something that belongs to the Lord. These are all clear. But one thing is not clear. This thing of the exchangers, who are they?

If it were purely a money thing, they would be bankers. But this parable makes it clear that money is only being used to teach a greater truth. Which is the use of our true riches. Things that frankly according to Scripture are more valuable than money, silver or gold. For example, consider Proverbs 22:1 A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold. A good name can be invested to the assistance of others. But how?

The answer to that is found in today’s verse. Put that good name into the hands of the exchangers to be used to bring the Lord increase. Could it be that the exchangers in this case are pastors? Pastors of local churches know where the true need is. They know how to take a person’s good name, for example, and invest it in others. They may use that person’s name in a sermon illustration to encourage others, or use that person’s good name, meaning their good reputation, by putting them into a key role in the church. Or they may ask that person with a good name to teach a class, or to give consultation on a church decision. There are a myriad of ways to use a person’s good name in and through a church; the person with the good name may not know how it is to be put to work, but a godly pastor will.

Consider money given to a church. It is used, under the direction of the pastor, to pay for things the church needs, such as utilities, payroll, insurance, printing of tracts, etc., etc. An individual gives money to the church and the pastor sees to it that it is exchanged for some good or service that the church ministry needs. In a way they exchange money for things needed to perform the spiritual (invisible) work of the church which always has been and always will be souls, the winning of them, the discipling of them, and the encouragement and admonition of them. Churches help people in many ways, some physical and some spiritual.

Could it be that the exchangers of money into spiritual, God honoring, gains are church ministries as watched over by pastors who know how to invest those “talents”? Somewhere, somehow there must be exchangers to whom we can take our talents and put them to use for the Lord’s work. If these are not pastors and churches, then who?

William T. Howe, Ph.D.

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