[This is the ninth post in a series about the Blessed Hope–the return of Jesus Christ. (False prophets)]
There is a verse in the New Testament that had always puzzled me. It’s Luke 19:13:
“And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, ‘Occupy till I come’” (kjv).
The word “occupy” stuck in my brain like a burr on wool socks.
The above verse is in the midst of a story Jesus told about a nobleman who left on a journey to a far kingdom and left each of his workers a different amount of money to carry on business while he was gone.
I understand the parable. But there’s still that word, “occupy.”
Some Bible translations interpret the word as, “carry on business,” which goes well with the surrounding verses.
Yet I like the King James version on this one, and this is why: to me, occupy means taking up space or holding a position. It’s being in the right place at the right time.
The Apostle Paul grieved over the people of Corinth when he learned that after he’d left them, false prophets saw an opening and tried to move in. They spread false teaching and had the whole community fearful and anxious.
Paul returned to the city and straightened their course. He wrote:
“But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who . . . are false apostles,” (see 2 Corinthians 11:12-13).
Staying in the place of service God leads us to is part of walking in His plan.
It can be a difficult battle. Staying and standing, whether in the workplace, your home, or in the ministry, keeps the Enemy out.
When we serve God, we are taking away opportunity from those who might use or abuse, mislead, deceive, or ultimately, destroy.
The recent Super Bowl game renewed my hope. The winning quarterback, Nick Foles, is a Christian who wore a cross during after-game interviews. His wife tweeted her euphoria over the win and ended her tweet with “God is good.”
The Eagles’ head coach, Doug Pederson, gave the reason for his success. He said, “I can only give praise to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ for giving me this opportunity.”
In the midst of a game fraught with big money, big egos, and big controversy, God is sovereign.
Had the Patriots won, I think the Christians on that team would have given Him thanks, too.
God’s people were placed in just the right place for just the right time. They magnified His Name and their testimony reached 103 million souls.