In this parable, Jesus teaches us about his hiring of Christian servants, giving them gifts, and the results. It's actually quite profound, and also scary.
14 For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods.
Jesus starts off his parable by comparing Heaven (God, Jesus, Holy Ghost) to a travelling man (like Jesus who came to earth from Heaven). He then calls for servants to do Christian works on earth.
15 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.
Jesus gives out various gifts (ministry, discernment, prayer, healing, comfort, etc) to different people who he chooses. He apparently customizes gifts according to ability.
16 Then he that had received the five talents went and traded with the same, and made them other five talents.
This man gets more gifts than the others. He then goes out and gains more for the Kingdom of Heaven and his Lord Jesus than the others. This is like a Christian minister who goes out and conducts crusades where thousands, millions attend.
17 And likewise he that had received two, he also gained other two.
This man gets less gifts than the first, but still goes out and does Christian works with them. Less works than the first man, but still very valid! Perhaps in small groups, or planting seeds of truth at their workplace.
18 But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord's money.
This guy was given a gift from God, and did nothing with it. He did not do God's work.
19 After a long time the lord of those servants cometh, and reckoneth with them. 20 And so he that had received five talents came and brought other five talents, saying, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them five talents more. 21 His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord. 22 He also that had received two talents came and said, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained two other talents beside them. 23 His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
Jesus Christ and the first two servants discuss the works with the Christian gifts, and the accomplishments (compared to profits in parable). Jesus is very happy about the accomplishments, and grants the first two servants entry into Heaven.
24 Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed: 25 And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine.
The guy who didn't do any works for the Kingdom of Heaven, tells Jesus what he did.
26 His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed: 27 Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury. 28 Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents. 29 For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath. 30 And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Jesus get's very, VERY angry and severely punishes the man! "Weeping and gnashing of teeth" is used as a description for those who have been eternally damned to hell: "So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth." (Matthew 13:49-50). The word "wailing" is defined as "to utter a prolonged, inarticulate, mournful cry, usually high-pitched or clear-sounding, as in grief or suffering: to wail with pain." The word "gnashing" is defined as "to grind or strike (the teeth) together, esp. in rage or pain."