I was searching on the internet to see if I could find any teacher who understood the proper meaning of the parable of the hidden treasure or the pearl of great price and I didn't find anyone. I found the same answer over and over which made no sense to me. It would say something like, "I don't mean you pay for your salvation but you must surrender everything or be willing to sacrifice."
Mk...I pay for it, but I don't pay for it. I never understood that. They usually give the same meaning in the parable of the talents as well. "I'm not saying you earn your salvation...But you had better work for it!"
Of course I viewed the parables in the same way, but it never sat right with me. It never made any sense and honestly, it didn't allow me to love Jesus anymore. It caused me to see Him exactly as the servant who was given one talent. I knew Him to be a hard man. It's amazing how the wisdom of God has the ability to cause man to condemn himself. God is so much more wonderful and glorious than we can imagine. And we could see Him if only we learned to be more honest with ourselves and our helpless condition. He gives grace to the humble! Don't confuse humility with false humility.
"For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God to through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe."
"God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God."
Viewing the Scripture through the lens of your abilities and pride closes the Scripture from your eyes. But in realizing your weakness and God's strength, He gives revelation.
If you put yourself under Law, you will be judged by it, but if you put yourself under God's Grace given to you in the revelation of His Son in the Greatest News anyone has ever heard, you will be given Grace. The man with one talent knew God's Law but not God's Grace and he was condemned by the Law he put himself under. He knew his master to be a hard man and he got a hard man. But to those who know the Grace of God in Christ Jesus will receive Grace in that Day. Jesus told men seeking to kill Him that He wouldn't be the One to accuse them on the day of judgment. He said that the very Law they relied upon would condemn them. He didn't come to condemn them but to save them.
It's hard for me to articulate exactly what I'm thinking but I hope you understand at least a little of what I'm saying.
God is no longer your Judge because you are no longer His bondservant! You are His son or daughter! You are a child of the Most High God if you have understood and believed the Grace of God in truth. Set your hope fully upon the Grace of God that will be brought to you in the Day of our Lord Jesus Christ.