Today we will be reading from Luke 20: 9-18:
9 He began to tell the people this parable: “A man planted a vineyard and leased it to tenants and went away for a long time. 10 When the season came, he sent a slave to the tenants in order that they might give him his share of the produce of the vineyard, but the tenants beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 11 Next he sent another slave; that one also they beat and insulted and sent away empty-handed. 12 And he sent still a third; this one also they wounded and threw out. 13 Then the owner of the vineyard said, ‘What shall I do? I will send my beloved son; perhaps they will respect him.’ 14 But when the tenants saw him, they discussed it among themselves and said, ‘This is the heir; let us kill him so that the inheritance may be ours.’ 15 So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. What then will the owner of the vineyard do to them? 16 He will come and destroy those tenants and give the vineyard to others.” When they heard this, they said, “Heaven forbid!” 17 But he looked at them and said, “What then does this text mean:‘The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone’?
18 “Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces, and it will crush anyone on whom it falls.”
Today we see the consequences of yesterday’s actions. Yesterday we saw how so many of the religious leaders weren’t actually listening to Jesus. They were talking to Him; they were asking Him questions; they looked like they were seeking to learn from Jesus. But they were not. They were not really listening. They were talking with the hopes of tripping Him up. They weren’t listening.
Today, we see Jesus tell a parable. It’s a parable about the owner of a vineyard who leases his land and when it is time to reclaim it, sends his slaves (or servants) to reclaim, but they are beaten. Then he sends his son, and they kill him. After that, they are punished.
This is a parable to the religious leaders about what will happen when they keep rejecting the people that God has sent. They rejected the prophets in the Old Testament. Now they are rejecting Jesus. And because of that, they will be cut off.
Our actions have consequences. Every time we reject the call of God, we cannot hear as well. Every time we give into temptation, our heart grows a little harder. Every time we push back from God, we move further away. He has left us, but our ability to see Him, to hear Him, to experience Him, it is diminished.
Now, all we have to do is return, and we are restored. We are forgiven. But here’s the thing, each rejection makes that a little harder. It builds up those callouses that make it more challenging that make it more difficult.
Today, make time actually to listen. And make time to act upon what you hear. Do not reject, do not push away. But listen. And obey. Our actions, both rejection, and acceptance have consequences. Today, may we hear the Word of God.
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