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Mario J Miranda

Abstract

Bible Literature has been largely ignored by those writing comprehensive studies of wealth and poverty. The Parable of the Talents has some western interpreters relishing the profit-making elements of the parable and seeing in it nothing less than praise for a homespun capitalism. The parable engages with several economic concepts at various stages of its narrative. The approach to taking risk in managing assets in a conceivably market economy is central to the moral of the story with the intention of growing the portfolio. The standout message is that profit arising from productivity is to be rewarded, while opportunity costs arising from lack of enterprise will inevitably be punished. The emotion of fear (the risk of losing) as a driving motivation of investment in enterprise is palpable. Recognition of ability, equitable allocation of resources, expectation and performance appraisal of the stewardship of the assets by the owner of the capital are key factors in the parable’s instruction. In a world obsessed with material possessions some success in a Scripture based approach to the management of resources and creation of value to “feed more sheep†might have a redeeming effect on the economic ills that riddle society. 
 
KEYWORDS: scripture, economics, Jesus, master, talents

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