Matthew 24:45 “Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom his master has set over his household, to give them their food at the proper time? 46 Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes. 47 Truly, I say to you, he will set him over all his possessions.
The Watchtower "Insight" publication says:
"Those forming the Christian congregation are referred to by the apostle Paul as “members of the household of God” (Eph 2:19; 1Ti 3:15), and the same apostle shows that ‘faithful stewardship’ among such household members involved the dispensing of spiritual truths on which those becoming believers would ‘feed.’ (1Co 3:2, 5; 4:1, 2; compare Mt 4:4.)Whereas this(food dispension) was a prime responsibility of those appointed as ‘shepherds’ of the flock (1Pe 5:1-3), the apostle Peter shows that such stewardship of the divine truths was actually committed to all the ‘chosen ones,’ all the spirit-anointed ones, of the Christian congregation. (1Pe 1:1, 2; 4:10, 11)"(Insight vol. 1 under "faithful and discreet slave")
So,awesomely enough,the WT is willing to admit that in the first century,because they believe that at that time ALL true Christians were anointed,that this parable is in application to every member within the congregations,feeding one another as well as getting fed.They articulate this by saying further:
"The entire anointed Christian congregation was to serve in a united stewardship, dispensing such truths. At the same time the individual members making up such composite body, or the “domestics” making up the “house” of God (Mt 24:45; Heb 3:6; Eph 2:19), would also be recipients of the “food” dispensed. (Heb 5:11-14; compare 1Co 12:12, 19-27.)"
The WT admits this parable applies to the entire body of Christ,and thus everyone who was present in the congregations(the home fellowships) of the 1st century fulfilled it.Today,however, they inexplicably believe only a few "chosen ones",literally only thousands of people within their organization itself,fulfill it,and especially those in their "governing body."
We actually have a decent starting point because at least the WT admits that the "household" of God are anointed Christians.It's just entirely too bad that they think most Christians aren't spirit anointed at all!Therefore,they have to equivocate as they expand the household of God to include Christians who aren't in Christ at all to justify their unique application of this parable.The REAL problem with this is that the New Testament scriptures don't speak of anyone who is supposed to be Christian as actually being outside the body of Christ,which IS "God's household."In other words,to say there's a group distinct from the body of Christ within the household of God is scripturally baseless.When there are people progressing to true Christianity,once they have decided to exercise faith in the Messiah,then they need to live in him as their ark and truth,as their sole mediator and way to eternal life.(Jn. 14:6,1 Tim. 2:5)They receive the SAME reward(life in Christ alone) as those who are more mature in the faith.(Matt. 10:40-42)Essentially,fulfilling the parable along with every professed believer because they become slaves for Christ who,hopefully,are faithful and discreet ones.
Let's see,further, who scripture actually identifies as "God's household" to get a proper understanding of Matt. 24:45.Scripture says:
1 Peter 2:5:you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
1 Timothy 3:15 if I am delayed, you will know how people ought to conduct themselves in God's household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth.
Hebrews 3:6:Christ is faithful over God's house as a son. And we are his house if indeed we hold fast our confidence and our boasting in our hope.
The WT,of course,claim these texts apply to all Christians in the 1st century and VERY FEW today.This is because they believe the only true Christians are Jehovah's Witnesses,and most of them are of a class that are *outside* the body of Christ.This has been determined by their leaders by a clever misuse of texts like John 10:16 and Luke 12:32.Even though common sense as well as the bible itself makes it clear the "other sheep" are Gentiles(while the little flock are Jews) & that ALL ,quite frankly, share in the blessings of the body of Christ.(Eph. 2:11-22 expounds on the two groups)It would seem the WT has a different application for this parable from the 1st century to now.THEN,it was "all the Christians" feeding one another and being fed.Now it's just a few Christians(of a little flock anointed class,particularly privileged) feeding those who are not anointed at all(the less privileged).
How can the discreet slave of the WT feed God's household if,according to scripture,God's household is explicitly identified as the body of Christ?In other words,if it is the body of Christ that feeds those who aren't in it at the "proper time"(according to Watchtower theology),then who feeds the household(the body of Christ) itself?I'm sure JW's would say "Christ does" but according to this parable,faithful stewards OF Christ do.(with Christ as sole leader of every true believer of course)Since the governing body are ALSO "God's household" as members of Christ's body,then what faithful and wise servant feeds them in fulfillment of the parable?Also,if one says "the governing body of the JW's" feeds the *rest* of Christ's body,then on what scriptural basis can this be dogmatically established clearly & scripturally,while also asserting that the anointed fed ones fulfill the parable too even as they accomplish the EXACT SAME WORK as the "other sheep"?But that the "other sheep" somehow just don't fulfill it at all?It seems more to be a baseless assertion than a solid truth.If the WT magazines and such are your "food at the proper time",then how in the world did the Christians in the 1st century ever get properly nourished?
God in these last days has spoken to us through his SON.(Heb. 1:2)We have the holy scriptures and nothing else is essential,nothing else is prophesied to be necessary food for salvation.Only the truth found in Christ.I suppose that's why men who make claims as lofty as the governing body do always give themselves away with something,like false date setting and a bizarre separation of Christians into "classes."Yahushua is being ignored and an institution/organization "arrangement" and "food" is being hailed as something that's necessary for salvation.It's really blasphemous considering the sufficiency of Yahushua,the blemishless Lamb,eternal life from the Father himself.
I guess one of my beefs here is the fact that if you raise any objections to JW's about their unwarranted application of this parable,you will be met with claims like :
"but this parable can't be applied to all Christians individually because it's only for those set OVER the household."
This objection will not hold up at all if you read the WT publications themselves where they admit,again,about 1st century Christians,that "the entire anointed Christian congregation was to serve in a united stewardship, dispensing such truths. At the same time the individual members making up such composite body, or the “domestics” making up the “house” of God,would also be recipients of the “food” dispensed."So I guess my question is:
WHY,if in the 1st century every Christian in the congregations fulfilled this parable,even if they weren't spiritual leaders or elders or appointed in any position of oversight at all,can't this also be true of the parable today?OR,reworded:How can you say that every Christian can't possibly meet the requirements of this parable today because not every Christian is in a position of oversight if,according to the WT,all Christians used to fulfill this parable in the past regardless of not being appointed as leaders of any kind?Where is the justice in changing the parable's application at all?Wouldn't that be not only inconsistent,but peculiar and sly even?
Please keep in mind,JW's,that most of those claiming to be in the body of Christ within the WT organization itself are being fed by the governing body,even as the governing body claims that those not in the governing body yet in the body of Christ who are anointed JW's *also* fulfill this parable.So,again,why is it that the "other sheep" aren't fulfilling the parable as well since they are doing the **exact same** "faithful and discreet" work as the rest of the anointed JW's who claim to be in Christ who are outside the governing body itself?We have some real inconsistencies going on in WT theological matters!
This parable,clearly,is about those within the body of Christ tending carefully,faithfully,and discreetly to one another,handling the word of truth aright.If one MUST say it's in application solely to some spiritual leaders or teachers of the church,then why would that be "the governing body of JW's" as opposed to all the elders and servants appointed in the humble fellowships of the first century and today?In fact,where was the governing body in the 1st century home fellowships?Where was the location where they convened?Where is the evidence that any governing body privately,in closed chambers,concocted the "food" for all the fellowships at "the proper time?"Where are the rules by which the members could discreetly be appointed?Since there are detailed regulations for the appointment of elders and the like,it would only make sense that there would likewise be for the governing body that supposedly(according to the WT alone) dictated every affair of every congregation.It's absence in the epistles would be dumbfounding were it a prevailing reality.And absent it is!
Please keep in mind that regardless of the application of who the stewards are in Matthew 24:45,these stewards are feeding the body of Christ(identified in scripture as God's household befitting the parable) as opposed to people kept FROM the body of Christ by an manmade organization.
How can slaves of Christ be faithful and discreet?
Galatians 6:10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.
Matthew 7:24 Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.
Luke 16:10 Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.
2 Tim. 2:15:Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.
As Christians,we all have the responsibility to slave for Christ as faithfully and discreetly as possible.
A bible commentary says about this parable:
"The "servant" is there called a "steward", for such a servant is meant; and a name that is very proper for the apostles and ministers of the word, who are stewards of the mysteries of Christ, and of the manifold grace of God; and whose characters are, that they are "faithful": for this is required in stewards, that they be faithful to the trust reposed in them; as ministers are, when they preach the pure Gospel of Christ, and the whole of it; conceal no part, nor keep anything of it; seek not to please men, but God; neither seek their own things, their ease, honour, and profit, but the glory of God, the honour of Christ, and the good of souls; and abide by the truths, cause, and interest of a Redeemer, at all hazards. And they are "wise", who know and are well instructed in divine things; who make Christ the main subject of their ministry; who improve their talents and time for their master's use, and the advantage of those that are under their care; who seek for, and deliver acceptable words and matter; and manage their whole trust, so as to be able to give in a good account of their stewardship another day. The post that such a person is put in, and the work he is to do, follow:" ~Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Proverbs 14:35 A king delights in a wise servant, but a shameful servant incurs his wrath.
Proverbs 28:20 A faithful man will be richly blessed, but one eager to get rich will not go unpunished.
Hmm..looks like we better,as believers,be wise and faithful slaves.:)(Rom. 6:22,Eph. 6:6,Col. 3:24)For to do so entails an inheritance like no other,yes,eternal life!!Found in Christ alone,not an organization.