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In the parable of the talents(Matthew 25:14-30) when the master returns he somehow rewards one servant more than the other

The first two servants had achieved the same results/output(100 percent) relative to what they had been given.The first two servants are given similar recommendations for their sterling work.

Matthew 25:20-21 ESV

20 And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me five talents; here, I have made five talents more.’ 21 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.[e] You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master

Matthew 25:22-23 ESV

22 And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me two talents; here, I have made two talents more.’ 23 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’

But it is only the first servant(five talents) who seemingly is given an additional talent

Matthew 25:28 ESV

28 So take the talent from him and give it to him who has the ten talents

Why was the second servant(two talents) not also given another talent?

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  • I think the subtext of your question is: would a just God not reward fairly? I think he will, most definitely (and often wonder how that’ll work out for me..). I think it’s noteworthy to remember 1) this is a parable, just a story - not a depiction of reality at every level; 2) it was common, culturally, to exaggerate things to make a point when telling a story or giving a lesson.
    – user36337
    Oct 30, 2021 at 3:48

3 Answers 3

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The lesson for the Parable of the Talents is in Matthew 25:

29 For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will have an abundance. But from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.

The Parable of the Ten Minas is in Luke 19:

13 Calling ten of his servants, he gave them ten minas, and said to them, ‘Engage in business until I come.’

In this case, everyone is given a mina. Then he returned:

16 The first came before him, saying, ‘Lord, your mina has made ten minas more.’

1st servant makes 10 times in profit.

18 And the second came, saying, ‘Lord, your mina has made five minas.’

2nd servant makes 5 times in profit.

20 Then another came, saying, ‘Lord, here is your mina, which I kept laid away in a handkerchief;

This servant makes 0 profit.

24 And he said to those who stood by, ‘Take the mina from him, and give it to the one who has the ten minas.’

Give the mina to the servant who has made the most profit.

25 And they said to him, ‘Lord, he has ten minas!’ 26‘I tell you that to everyone who has, more will be given, but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.

The same lesson is articulated in these two parables. In both cases, the loser's money is given to the one who has the most money.

Why was the second servant(two talents) not also given another talent?

Because he wasn't the one with the most talents.

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  • You KNOW that doesn’t make mathematical sense. Just kidding 🤪 +1.
    – user36337
    Oct 30, 2021 at 3:50
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Why was the first servant(five talents) given an additional talent in Matthew 25?

Why was the second servant(two talents) not also given another talent?

It does not really matter, both slaves take delight in representing their master, Jehovah, and increasing his interests on earth. Both are rewarded with entry into His Heavenly Kingdom:

Matthew 25:21

21 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter the joy of your master.’

Isaiah poetically describes the joy of the slaves ;

Isaiah 61:10 ASV

10 I will greatly rejoice in Jehovah, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom [a]decketh himself with a garland, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.

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The talents in the parable (Mt 25:14-29) represent God’s grace, of which each person is given a certain measure (Eph 4:7). The criterion for distribution, however, is not determined by need, but "ability" (Mt 25:15); though it is doubtful that this word corresponds to our common notions of ability. And even if this grace is unfruitful in a person, it would not be lost but given to another.

The economics of God’s grace is not based on a system of limited resources, but one of abundance. Perhaps it could have been given to either of the two faithful servants (Mt 25: 20- 23), but that the talent of the unfaithful servant was given to the one who has more serves to illustrate the overflowing abundance of God’s grace and generosity toward those who are faithful to what they have been given.

For to everyone who has, more shall be given, and he will have an abundance – Mt 25:29

And God is able to make all grace overflow to you, so that, always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed – 2 Cor 9: 8

Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us – Eph 3:20

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