Bruce Arians, retired coach of the Arizona Cardinals, often used a catchy phrase with his team – ‘No Risk It – No Biscuit’. It was his way of talking about the risk/reward paradigm. The Cambridge English Dictionary gives the following definition of ‘risk/reward’: the possible profit that a particular activity may make, in relation to the risk involved in doing it.
In the Parable of the Talents, Jesus presents us with a story that clearly illustrates principles of the risk/reward concept: “For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord’s money. After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them” (Matthew 24:14-19, NKJV).
When the Master of the house returned, the servant that had received five talents and the servant that had received two talents had each doubled what they were given. They had taken the risk of investing. Then, each heard the Master say, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord” (Matthew 25:21, NKJV). They received a reward.
The servant that received one talent had a far different experience. He didn’t risk investment. He said, “I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.” Unfortunately, he heard the Master say, “You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed…Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents” (Matthew 25:26-28). No risk it – No biscuit.
Spiritual laziness can be devastating. Laziness is the disinclination to activity or exertion despite having the ability to act or exert oneself. Scripture tells us of our responsibility to share the gospel and bear fruit. This obligation creates an eternity determining situation. “Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin” (James 4:17, NKJV). Shrinking back and timidity do not please God. “But the fearful, and unbelieving… shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8, NKJV).
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)
~ Brother Roy