Ver. 14,15. There is much the same parable Luk_19:12, but the difference is so great in the narration, and the time, and circumstances, and scope seem so different, that the best expositors think it another, and spoken at another time, though there be much of this in that: I shall therefore leave the consideration of that in Luke, until I meet with it in him, (though some interpreters do think this the same with that), and only consider this, as it is before us in this evangelist. By
the kingdom of heaven, is doubtless here to be understood the economy of God’s providence in his gospel dispensations. The
man travelling into a far country, is Christ ascending up to heaven, who, when he ascended up on high gave gifts unto men, Eph_4:8. By
the goods, which the man is said to have delivered to his servants, are to be understood the gifts which God giveth to men, being himself (as to his glorious presence, and his principal residence, which is in heaven, at a great distance from us) as a man in a far country; for I see no reason to restrain these gifts to such as flow from Christ as Mediator, but rather choose to interpret it generally of all the gifts of God, whether of providence or grace. Whereas it is said, Mat_25:15, that this man divided his goods to his servants unequally,
to one five talents, to another two, to another one, to every man according to his several ability, it signifieth only God’s unequal distribution of his gifts to the sons of men, according to his own good pleasure; which is true both concerning natural parts, as wit, understanding, judgment, memory, as concerning those which the heathens call good things of fortune, as riches, honours, aud dignities; Christians call them the good things of Providence; under which notion also come all acquired habits, or endowments, such as learning, knowledge, moral habits, &c., which though acquired are yet gifts, because it is the same God who gives us power to get wealth, as Moses speaks, Deu_8:18, who also gives men power to get knowledge, and upon study and meditation to comprehend the natures and causes of things, and also to govern and bridle our appetites: or the gifts of more special providence, or distinguishing grace. I take all those powers given to men, by which they are enabled to do good, or to excel others, to come under the notion of the goods here mentioned, which God distributeth unequally according to his own good pleasure, and as seemeth best to his heavenly wisdom, for the government of the world, and the ordering of the affairs of his church; of all which God will have all account one day, and reward men according to the improvement, or no improvement, which they have made of them in their several stations.