Day 59: Tuesday, June 2
“Listen to another parable: There was a landowner who planted a vineyard. He put a fence around it, dug a pit for its winepress, and built a watchtower. Then he leased it to tenant farmers and went on a journey. When the harvest time was near, he sent his slaves to the tenants to collect his portion of the crop. But the tenants seized his slaves, beat one, killed another, and stoned another. Again he sent other slaves, more than the first, and they treated them the same way. Finally he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him and get his inheritance!’ So they seized him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. Now when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?”
They said to him, “He will utterly destroy those evil men! Then he will lease the vineyard to other tenants who will give him his portion at the harvest.”
Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the scriptures: ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. This is from the Lord, and it is marvelous in our eyes’?
For this reason I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit. The one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces, and the one on whom it falls will be crushed.”
When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they realized that he was speaking about them. They wanted to arrest him, but they were afraid of the crowds, because the crowds regarded him as a prophet.
The Scriptures quoted are from the NET Bible® http://netbible.com copyright ©1996, 2019 used with permission from Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. All rights reserved.
COMMENT & QUESTIONS
Jesus gives a simple parable about a vineyard. This is a thinly veiled swipe at the Jewish leaders who had done a bad job taking care of God’s people (the vineyard). Jesus points us to the day when the vineyard owner would return and deal with the bad tenants.
What application does this parable have for church leaders today?
Church leaders have extra responsibility to take care of the sheep. God will hold the leaders to an extra level of accountability. It should cause all current leaders and future leaders to be concerned about their current actions.
As we get closer to Jesus being crucified, can you think of all of the ways that the leaders were offended by Him? How many offences can you think of?
Jesus had violated their rules on the sabbath (12:1-14), violated their traditions about washing hands (15:1-9), had turned over the money changing tables in the temple (Matt 21:12-13) and had criticised the Pharisees at numerous points through His teachings. There were many reasons why they wanted to get rid of Him.
Pray for people being oppressed by bad leaders Pray that bad, malicious leaders will be brought to justice Pray for the leaders in the church – that they would shepherd the flock with wisdom and gentleness