According to Luke's narrative the king called ten servants and gave each a pound.Yet when the king returns he only accounts for three servants and nothing is said about the other seven servants and their pounds. The margin of accumulated interest vis a vis the original investment is also way too wide.

KJV Luke 19 : 11 - 20

And as they heard these things, he added and spake a parable, because he was nigh to Jerusalem, and because they thought that the kingdom of God should immediately appear. He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return.And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come.Then came the first, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained ten pounds. And the second came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds. And another came, saying, Lord, behold, here is thy pound, which I have kept laid up in a napkin:

But in a more or less similar parable in Matthew the master gives eight gold bags to three servants in proportion to their talents.The accumulated interest is also proportional to the original investment

KJV Matthew 25 : 15 - 18

And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey. Then he that had received the five talents went and traded with the same, and made them other five talents. And likewise he that had received two, he also gained other two. But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord's money.

Did Luke get the figures mixed up?

1 Answer 1


The parables in Matt 25 and Luke 19 are similar but distinct. Note the important differences between these two parables:

Matt 25:14-30. Parable of the Talents Luke 19:11-27. Parable of the Minas
While Jesus taught in the temple courts Just outside of Jerusalem (V11)
a man ("master") goes on a journey a nobleman goes to lay claim to kingship
three servants 10 servants
given 5 and 2 and 1 talent given 1 mina each
5 talents is doubled; 2 talents is doubled; 1 talent is buried 1 servant increases from 1 mina to 10; another produced 5 minas from his one; another nothing (not all servants are listed in the story)
Conclusion: For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. But the one who does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him. And throw that worthless servant into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ Conclusion: He replied, ‘I tell you that everyone who has will be given more; but the one who does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him. And these enemies of mine who were unwilling for me to rule over them, bring them here and slay them in front of me.’ ”

Thus, the two parables, while obviously similar, are still distinct as they were given at different times in different places to different audiences. Thus, refined and fine-tuned His parables to suit the occasion.


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