OCCUPY TIL I COME © Rhonda Pethoud March 4, 2016
I heard this verse discussed recently and decided to do some research on it, because the words, “occupy til I come” contains a very distinct lesson for us that is completely relevant today.
Luke 19:12-13 KJV “He said therefore, A certain nobleman wet into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return. And he called his ten servants and delivered to them ten pounds and said unto them, Occupy till I come.”
I’m not referring to the “Occupy Wall Street” crowd with these statements. If by some stretch of the imagination they were trying to use this scripture to describe what they were doing, they were not rightly dividing the scripture. Not even close.
The statement, “occupy till I come” has to do with using what God has given us to the best possible end. In this story in the Gospel of Luke, (The parable of the Ten Minas – a “mina” would be about $250 today) Jesus used the example of a nobleman who gave to his servants a certain amount of money, and expected them to invest it wisely in his absence. To the first he gave ten minas and the second, five. To the third, he gave one mina. The first two of them invested well and realized a good return on their investment so they were rewarded for their effort. The third man buried the money because he was fearful. He knew that the nobleman was not one to waste money, and he didn’t want to lose the man’s investment, so he buried it rather than invest it wisely so it could grow. The nobleman took the money from the third man and told him not only did you miss out on what you could have had, but I will taken away from you what you already had.
The Expositor’s bible explains that this parable has to do with your salvation and eternal life. If you do not use your salvation wisely, you will not only lose it, but you will lose all the rewards and gifts you could have had, if you had used your salvation wisely.
The Greek term behind the translation of “Occupy” literally means, “be occupied with business.” We are to be occupied with the business of the Lord until He returns.
But it doesn’t stop there, either.
God gave the land of Israel (not just the tiny country we see today, God gave Israel all the land from the Euphrates to the Nile). “On the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying: ‘To your descendants I have given this land…”‘ (Genesis 15:18). When the people entered the land, God told them to occupy it, meaning, they should cultivate the land; plant, till, and harvest. They were to build their homes there and start families.
This is a map of the land God gave Israel (about 25 times larger than the country we know today as Israel)
So why is Israel just a tiny little country today?
I admit it may be a little simplistic to break down the conflict between Palestinians and Israelis in this way, but basically what I have gathered about the conflict is this: “Palestinians” are not a race, in and of themselves. They are Jordanians, Egyptians and Syrians by birth who left their homeland and set up villages along the West Bank (and other places) and drove out the Jewish people. (It was England who gave them the name Palestinians.)
In 1947 there was a proposal made by the U.N. to create separate Jewish and Palestinian states called “The 1947 U.N. Partition Plan for Palestinians”. The Palestinians and surrounding Arab states rejected the proposal and began several attacks on Israel with the intent of creating Jewish genocide. Egypt took control of Gaza; Jordan took control of the West Bank. Israel defeated these efforts in the 1967 war and took the West Bank and Gaza back. Since the “Palestinians” rejected their opportunity at statehood in 1947, their claim that Israel is occupying them is false by definition. At the most, Israel is controlling disputed territory, for which there is no clear U.N. resolution. Palestinians believe they are entitled to 100% of Judea and Samaria and seem bent on the complete destruction of Israel rather than enter into any compromise or negotiation. The Muslims are commanded by their prophet to take others’ lands by whatever means is necessary, in order to fulfill their goal of world domination and the complete annihilation of the Jews.
Now then, we know that God gave Israel all this land (Joshua 21:43 And the LORD gave unto Israel all the land which he sware to give unto their fathers; and they possessed it, and dwelt therein.) . Since we as Christians believe what is written in the bible as the inerrant Word of God, the outcome will be that Israel WILL get that land when the dust settles and the smoke clears. We know that Jerusalem is the chosen city where Jesus will reign for 1000 years (the Millennial Reign) and that His headquarters will be relocated from Heaven to Jerusalem at the time of the Second Coming. (Jerusalem means, The City of Peace).
Would God have told the Israelites to “occupy” the land if He didn’t intend for them to have it? Of course not.
God told the Israelites to occupy – get about the business of the Lord and create their homes and farms and families and businesses in this new land so that future generations would continue in that same way by going about the business of the Lord and raising their families and working and keeping His commandments. The whole Bible is filled with advice about “how” to do that.
Beyond that though, when Jesus used the Parable of the Ten Minas to explain to the disciples that He would be going away for awhile, and to USE the gift of salvation they had been given, He was also telling them that they should be about the business of the Lord until He returned.
Each and every one of us TODAY needs to be about the business of the Lord. We can’t allow greed and corruption and immorality to invade our way of life to the degree that we can no longer recognize the land God gave us. We need to elect someone to the highest office of the land who will bring order to the chaos that has been heaped upon us by the current administration. Yes, we are to be kind. Yes, we are to love our neighbor.. but the promises of God are for believers, so they can be an example to unbelievers. Unbelievers are mentioned in the bible, but not as recipients of God’s grace. Until an unbeliever recognizes that s/he needs to know the Lord, the Holy Spirit can’t work in them. Each unbeliever MUST come to the Lord on his own and submit himself to God, just as every believer has done. An unbeliever is not your “brother” until he has given his life to God. You are not a child of God until you give your life to Him. He will accept all who ask, but you must first, come. (Whosoever will) The Old Testament is prophetic and tells of the coming Messiah; the New Testament contains the promises of God. The promises of God belong to believers.
Lots of people are going to argue with those statements, but I invite you to read these scriptures:
Galatians 3:22 – But the scripture shut up all under sin, so that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.
John 20:31 – But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through His name.
My point is this: the upcoming Presidential election is screaming for us to “be about the business of the Lord”.
We need to get to work and solve some of the problems in this country. Not by giving people who deliberately break our laws extra benefits, but by requiring them to follow our laws. Not by ignoring the people in need so that someone else’s greed can be satisfied, or expecting one segment of society to bear the greater part of the load while another segment does no work at all. Not by aborting unwanted babies but by finding ways to educate men and women about the consequences of their actions and finding ways to keep families together. Not by taking from one group and giving to another – but by creating opportunity so that all can be productive and earn their own way, so each of them can “occupy”.
We need to get about the business of the Lord by recognizing that God created government, and by doing so, He expected the leaders to be thoughtful, intelligent people who had the best interests of the country in mind. They were not elected to enrich themselves or create opportunity for their own interests. Not by demoralizing our military and weakening it, but by building it’s strength so we don’t have to use it. It does NOT mean ignoring our Constitution and trying to rewrite it – our Founding Fathers sought the Lord and asked for wisdom when they drafted that document, and God’s hand has been upon this country ever since. If we venture much further into immorality and darkness, God will not keep His hand upon this nation.
We MUST vote for a conservative so that liberal politics don’t lead us further into darkness than we’ve already sunk. 56+ MILLION aborted babies are screaming to be heard so don’t you dare let some liberal tell you that a Christian doesn’t have to listen.
No one who calls themselves a Christian can rightly be in favor of abortion or the liberals’ accepted practice of selling babies’ body parts. Vivisection is a barbaric practice used on animals, which animal rights activists have been protesting for years. Doing the same to human babies is far worse. Murder is an abomination before God and those who have already committed this sin must repent before Him and ask forgiveness – and He will forgive, because He promised that He would. God doesn’t just forgive – He promises to “remember no more” – it’s as if the slate is wiped clean and no trace of your sin remains because when you are a believer, God sees you through the prism of Jesus’ perfection, through His sacrifice on the cross.
It would be wonderful if we could elect a President who seeks the Lord on a regular basis and every decision he makes is firmly grounded in a biblical world view. But we’re not electing a pastor. We’re looking for a CEO for this country who will do the best he can for the greater good. We need to research their character and find out who lies, what they’ve done and who they answer to before we cast our vote. Look at the big picture – start NOW with one of the candidates we have and maybe in the next election, we’ll have someone who has an even greater biblical world view.
And then, when the conventions are all over and all the mud has been flung, we will need to go to the polls. If we have to, we may need to hold our nose and cast our vote for the conservative nominee even if it’s not the guy we really wanted, because if we don’t vote, we are spitting on the grave of every soldier who gave his or her life for our liberty since the Revolutionary War and telling each of them, their sacrifice meant nothing.
If you do not vote in this upcoming election, you are effectively handing your support to liberal causes and you WILL answer to God for it at the Judgment Seat of Christ. Don’t let this happen. USE the power of your vote and help elect someone to the highest office in the country who will fight to keep us whole. Be about the business of the Lord –
OCCUPY, TIL I COME.