In verses 18 and 19 of our text Paul said that God has given “us” the ministry of reconciliation and that He has “committed” to “us” the message of reconciliation. As those who have been reconciled to God through the work of Jesus we have not just had our sin removed and the Holy Spirit imparted to us, we have also had a calling or a ministry given to us and most of all we have had a message “committed to us”. To receive something that is given is like receiving a gift, but to have something committed to us means that it is received with responsibility, it is put in our care but still belongs to the one who has given it to us. The message of reconciliation has been committed to us, the reconciled, in a similar manner as the talents were delivered or entrusted to the servants in the parable of Matthew 25. Jesus said that the kingdom of heaven is like a man going on a journey who called his servants together and entrusted, delivered, or committed his possessions to them until his return. Isn’t that exactly what Jesus has done? He left His place of glory, the One who created everything became a part of creation, the Word who was with God and was God, became flesh and dwelt among us; He lived a perfect life to fulfill the Law, as the eternal High Priest He offered Himself as the final, once for all, sacrifice for all sin and then He was raised from death back to life by the breath of His Father. He then departed, ascended back to the right hand of His Father, where He baptized us in the Holy Spirit, the gift of His Father and now, He intercedes on our behalf that we would rightly live in the ministry of reconciliation and administer the message of reconciliation. The parable of the talents is not only a story to teach us about the kingdom of God it is prophetic. Jesus is the man on the journey and we are His servants, entrusted with His Spirit, with His ministry and with His message. The man in the story gave one servant 5 talents, he gave another 2 and he gave the third 1, each one was entrusted with possessions according to his ability which means that the man, the master, was careful in what he gave, he was not willing to let his possessions be lost or damaged but he was also careful to not put his servants in positions in which they could or would not thrive. We won’t ever be able to stand before God and say we didn’t know what to do, or how to handle what He has placed within us because He has only given us what He has also made us capable of using for His glory and man’s redemption. When the man returned from his journey he went to each servant to see what they had done with the possessions that he had entrusted to him. The servant given 5 talents and the servant who had been given 2 both took the possessions and they went out and used them the way they had seen their master use them. They traded with them, they worked with them, they used them in the same manner that the master had taught them and by doing so, when he returned they had both increased their master’s wealth, both doubling what had been given to them. The third servant, the one who had been given one talent, was so afraid of losing what he had been given that he took it, dug a hole and buried the talent for safe keeping, so that when the master returned he could show him that he had not lost what he had started with. Today I want us to see that we have not been reconciled to God so that we can carefully hold onto our portion until we stand before Him. The master in the parable called the third servant wicked and lazy, he was selfish and gave very little thought to his master’s heart, his master’s estate, or his master’s desires and he simply did what he felt was right for himself. We haven’t just been reconciled, we have been given the ministry that leads to reconciliation and we have been entrusted with the message of reconciliation, it’s the message that pierces men’s hearts, that changes men’s minds, but here is what we have to understand, we have been given the message that increases God’s kingdom, the message that adds children to His family. We have been entrusted with the message that fulfills God’s desire that none would perish. Living for the message of reconciliation is the fullest sense of living for God because it is spending our lives doing God’s will. This morning we are going to closely look at the heart behind the message of reconciliation, this message that is so much more simple and more powerful than we have realized, this message that literally raises the dead, heals the sick, adopts the orphans, increases heaven and robs hell. My prayer is that today we will see that Jesus has given Himself for us and committed His message to us so that we can begin the fruitful work of giving the message to others so that they can give themselves to Jesus.