Philip Massey, an adjunct faculty member because that Crowell school of Business, retells the parable of the 2 debtors in modern terms.

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Philip MasseyMatthew 18:23-35 documents the parable of the two debtors: one owed the king 10,000 talents, and also one owed his fellow servant 100 denarii. The NIV footnotes commonly say the this is equivalent to “several million dollars” matches “a couple of dollars.”

A much more accurate compare is based on how lot time the would take to earn this respective amounts of money. Let us start with 100 denarii.

The denarius was one day’s wage for a usual day laborer, who worked six job a week through a Sabbath job of rest. Allowing approximately two weeks for miscellaneous Jewish holidays, the common laborer functioned 50 mainly of the year and earned an yearly wage of 300 denarii (50 main x 6 days). Therefore, 100 denarii was one-third of a year salary, or four months’ wages.

Now suppose you ongoing to job-related as a work laborer earning 300 denarii every year. After two decades of such labor, friend will have earned 6,000 denarii.At this point, the king would certainly say come his debtor, “Congratulations. Girlfriend have operated for 20 years and have actually now earned 6,000 denarii. That’s sufficient to pay ago one talent. Friend only have actually 9,999 more talents to go.”

From this, we can quickly see that if it takes two decades to knife one talent, then repaying 10,000 talent would require working 200,000 YEARS! just how absurd then for the servant to beg for mercy and tell the king that he would certainly “pay ago everything.” as a day laborer, he had actually no hope—almost literally “not in a million years”—of ever repaying his debt.

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What would certainly 100 denarii and also 10,000 talents look like in today’s dollars? Currently, California’s minimum wage is $8.00 per hour. Indigenous Matthew 20:1-16, we know that laborers worked 12 hrs per day, i beg your pardon is 72 hrs per week. Under California law, they would be payment 40 hrs a week at $8 one hour and 32 hrs of overtime in ~ $12 one hour because that a weekly wage of $704. Thus, their yearly wage, presume they occupational 50 weeks together above, would be: $704 per week x 50 main = $35,200

Therefore, if 100 denarii equaled 4 months’ salary, at existing minimum wage, it would be equivalent to $11,733.33, which is substantially more than the NIV footnote of “a couple of dollars.”

Earning $35,200 every year at minimum wage, how much would certainly you knife in 200,000 years to same 10,000 talents?

$35,200 x 200,000 = $7,040,000,000 $7.04 billion

For perspective, $7.04 billion is approximately one-eighth the the full wealth of invoice Gates. Bill Gates, the richest male in the U.S. And second richest in the world, has a net worth that $53 billion together of 2010:

If you had actually $7.04 billion available to repay a debt, you would be #102 in the 2010 Forbes list of billionaires.