This is the first of a series of meditations on the parable of the nobleman and his minas in Luke 19:12-27. While there are many points to be gleaned from this parable, I want to spend time on the most prominent and obvious of all the features of the parable. In fact, this feature is so obvious that it could almost be missed altogether. It is the feature of the parable on which all the other features depend. Without this feature, the parable ceases to make sense or to have meaning. What feature am I talking about? Simply this: The nobleman will certainly return. Whether he is gone to receive a kingdom for a short time or a long time, the nobleman will certainly return. There is nothing in all of existence that can prevent the nobleman’s return.
Notice the ways that the nobleman’s return is assumed and guaranteed. In 19:12, the verse explicitly says that the nobleman will return. As certainly as he goes on his journey, the nobleman will certainly return. In 19:13, he tells his slaves to “do business with this (mina) until I come back.” Again, the nobleman will certainly come back to assess how well his slaves invested the minas they were given. But make no mistake about it; the nobleman will be back. Finally in 19:15, the parable states, “When he returned . . .” As he left and declared to his slaves that he would return, so the nobleman has now returned. He declared it and his word required it, so now the nobleman has fulfilled it. At no point in the parable is there any possibility that the nobleman will not return. The timing of his return may be in question, but he will definitely and irresistibly return. It cannot be prevented.
The nobleman, of course, is the Lord Jesus Christ. In the Greek of this passage, “the nobleman” (19:12) is literally “the man of high and noble birth,” and there is no one of higher or nobler birth than the Lord Jesus. Talking about future events which will shortly come to pass in Jerusalem, Jesus uses the means of the parable to describe the reason why He will ascend to heaven following His resurrection (“to receive a kingdom”) and makes clear that some period of time will pass before He returns (“the nobleman went to a distant country”).
But like the nobleman in this parable, Jesus will certainly return. This is something on which all believers can confidently rely, that Jesus, the nobleman, will return for His own. The word of God declares it. Jesus Himself promises it. The judgment of the wicked and the reward of the righteous require it. Jesus must fulfill all that is written of Him in the Scriptures, for the Scriptures cannot be broken, and the Scriptures proclaim that Jesus will return in power and in glory for judgment.
So let this be an encouragement for you and an anchor for your soul; that Jesus is coming back. There is nothing in heaven above or in earth beneath that can prevent Jesus’ return. When things are difficult and dark, remember that the Lord of glory is going to come back for you, and He cannot and will not be stopped. The most noble man, the Lord Jesus Christ, is coming back for His own. Be ready to meet Him when He comes.
SDG rmb 9/11/2016