Sunday 10 April 2022

Matthew 24:15-31 (NIV)

15 “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand—16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17 Let no one on the housetop go down to take anything out of the house. 18 Let no one in the field go back to get their cloak. 19 How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! 20 Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again. 22 “If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened. 23 At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. 24 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 See, I have told you ahead of time. 26 “So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. 27 For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 28 Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather. 29 “Immediately after the distress of those days “ ‘the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.’ 30 “Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. 31 And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.

This is the middle of a difficult passage. It’s easy to get caught up in the rumours, false prophets, false Messiahs, chaos and brokenness and be overcome by confusion and fear. But Jesus isn’t the source of any of these things, and his return sweeps all of those things away.

Jesus makes it clear that he won’t be hard to find. (Don’t listen to rumours that he’s somewhere else). He can be found by all who seek him now (Isaiah 55:6). His return will be even more obvious than lightning that flashes across the sky. His return will be so unambiguous that even people who don’t want to see him return will recognise him.

There will be false prophets, even false Messiahs, who will try to deceive us. But there’s no deception from Jesus. The returning Jesus is the same Jesus who was teaching the truth in the temple courts – the Jesus who is the truth (John 14:6). His return restores truth to all creation. He restores humanity’s true purpose in relationship with God.

We shouldn’t look for Jesus in the chaos and brokenness that sin brings to the world. The same Jesus who was healing the blind and the sick is returning to bring complete wholeness to all creation.

We shouldn’t look towards Jesus’ return with fear or confusion but hope and expectation. We shouldn’t view his return as a cause for mourning but for joy at his return.

Thank you, Jesus, that you are returning to complete the reconciliation of all things that you began on the cross. And thank you, too, that you give us a part to play now, bringing your word of reconciliation to the world (2 Corinthians 5:16-20). Today, I want my life and my words to speak your clear truth, your words of hope and expectation, your plea to all people to be reconciled to you.

“Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.” (Revelation 22:20)

Written by David Cornell

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Saturday 9 April 2022

Matthew 24:1-14 (NIV)

1 Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call his attention to its buildings. 2 “Do you see all these things?” he asked. “Truly I tell you, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.” 3 As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” 4 Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. 6 You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. 7 Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8 All these are the beginning of birth pains. 9 “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. 10 At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, 11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. 12 Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, 13 but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

This passage challenges me to consider – where do I put my trust?

No wonder the disciples were anxious to know when the temple would be destroyed. The temple represented so much of their identity and history. It represented God being with them, a permanence of their culture, a focus of their worship. Being an occupied nation, their security obviously was an ever present fear. Here Jesus doesn’t say he will preserve all that, rather he predicts its destruction.

Did it occur to the disciples that their trust was in the wrong place? Without the temple could they be sure God was still with them? When Jesus predicts the signs of the end times, I noticed much of what he was warning about was to do with where people will place their trust – in significant religious places, in false teachers, fake Messiahs, in charismatic leaders, in ideologies. What these will provide is shaky ground and bring about division among Christians. There have been some obvious recent examples.

My trust has to be firmly in Him – to withstand these glittery alternatives. And the only way I know to stand firm is by trusting in Jesus and his promises for me, all based on the rock that is God – the God who is in control.

Lord, when the chaos of the end of days comes, your love for me will still be as strong as ever. By your Spirit, I will stand firm on your love and on Jesus’ death and resurrection. Amen.

Written by Claire Moore

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Friday 8 April 2022

Matthew 23:13-39 (NIV)

13 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the door of the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let those enter who are trying to. 14 15 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when you have succeeded, you make them twice as much a child of hell as you are. 16 “Woe to you, blind guides! You say, ‘If anyone swears by the temple, it means nothing; but anyone who swears by the gold of the temple is bound by that oath.’ 17 You blind fools! Which is greater: the gold, or the temple that makes the gold sacred? 18 You also say, ‘If anyone swears by the altar, it means nothing; but anyone who swears by the gift on the altar is bound by that oath.’ 19 You blind men! Which is greater: the gift, or the altar that makes the gift sacred? 20 Therefore, anyone who swears by the altar swears by it and by everything on it. 21 And anyone who swears by the temple swears by it and by the one who dwells in it. 22 And anyone who swears by heaven swears by God’s throne and by the one who sits on it. 23 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. 24 You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel. 25 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. 26 Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean. 27 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. 28 In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness. 29 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You build tombs for the prophets and decorate the graves of the righteous. 30 And you say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our ancestors, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ 31 So you testify against yourselves that you are the descendants of those who murdered the prophets. 32 Go ahead, then, and complete what your ancestors started! 33 “You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to hell? 34 Therefore I am sending you prophets and sages and teachers. Some of them you will kill and crucify; others you will flog in your synagogues and pursue from town to town. 35 And so upon you will come all the righteous blood that has been shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah son of Berekiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. 36 Truly I tell you, all this will come on this generation. 37 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. 38 Look, your house is left to you desolate. 39 For I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’”

Blind Guides, religious leaders, woe, terror, punishment.  Now that is the plot of a great story isn’t it.  Just imagine entrusting yourself to a ‘blind guide’!  Jesus saves some of His greatest condemnations for the ones who should know better, the religious leaders.  The Pharisees and Sadducees majored on minors.  They had rules for every minute area of life, while at the same time they forgot about the important things.  This is not uncommon, legalists are sticklers for details, but blind to great principles.  I find myself conflicted as I write this blog.  Being a pastor in our church I am very aware of the great weight of responsibility that leadership in the Christian community necessarily entails.  Whenever I hear of a Christian brother or sister fail through some form of moral, ethical, or spiritual failure it pains me to my heart.  Yet like them I am made of clay, frail, tempted, sinful.  How I need the Saviour – Jesus, we all do!  On the other hand, I know that we need to lift the standard of following Christ to the level that He calls us to, not some culture infused lifestyle where comfort and compromise win out over Christ.  I am sure, that at least in part, the intention of the Pharisees and Sadducees rules and regulations was to promote righteousness!  Yet here in lies the conundrum.  Righteousness and godliness are of the heart.  The rules are external.  We need to know the standard then in God’s grace seek to fulfil it!  And it is here that I think we need fresh revelation – that Jesus empower us to fulfill His plan, His life, His way – grace and truth, truth, and grace – Jesus was full of both and wants us to be full of both and know just when and how to bring them out.

May we not be pharisees or Sadducees by our actions and attitudes, yet live in true holiness, measured by God’s grace and truth.

Father help us in our weaknesses – which are many and varied.  Help us to live godly lives in Christ to reflect His grace and truth!

Written by Ps. Richard Botta

2 replies
  1. Claire Moore says:

    Thanks for speaking out the truth with grace Richard. The challenge not to just live a culture infused lifestyle where comfort and compromise win out over Christ- that’s big!
    Christ in the centre, Christ above all, Christ in our hearts will flow out into our values, words and actions.

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Thursday 7 April 2022

Matthew 23:1-12 (NIV)

1 Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: 2 “The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. 3 So you must be careful to do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach. 4 They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them. 5 “Everything they do is done for people to see: They make their phylacteries wide and the tassels on their garments long; 6 they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues; 7 they love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and to be called ‘Rabbi’ by others. 8 “But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers. 9 And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. 10 Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one Instructor, the Messiah. 11 The greatest among you will be your servant. 12 For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.

Matthew 23 leaves no mystery why the religious leaders wanted to crucify Jesus. Speaking to the crowds, Jesus warns us not to live a life of hypocrisy. It’s Jesus’ final message to the Jews in the temple area during Passion week. His teaching is pointed straight at the teachers of the law and Pharisees, and boy are they not happy with that! Fortunately, we can learn so much from this passage.

Jesus boldly teaches about being authentic and having integrity by practising what you preach. Whether it was praying, fasting, or washing feet, Jesus was always the prime example to others. It’s no wonder he has such cutting words to the teachers of the law and Pharisees!

Jesus guides us in acting with humility by not making a big show of our faith or wanting things that the world deems significant: places of honour, important seats, or fancy titles. We know our work for the Lord, and He sees all we do. We are only acting in our self-interests when we act in a way for people to see.

We need to ensure we live by God’s authority and not human authority. It is how we can avoid a life of hypocrisy and strive for authenticity, integrity, and humility.

Dear Lord, we thank you that we are all brothers and sisters in you. Thank you, Jesus, for your teachings and sacrifice. Please help us live a life full of authenticity, integrity, and humility. Lord, fill our hearts with love for you and our neighbours. May we avoid the selfish desires of our hearts and seek your way, Jesus. In your precious name, Jesus.

Written by Sven Bessesen

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Wednesday 6 April 2022

Matthew 22:41-46 (NIV)

41 While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, 42 “What do you think about the Messiah? Whose son is he?” “The son of David,” they replied. 43 He said to them, “How is it then that David, speaking by the Spirit, calls him ‘Lord’? For he says, 44 “ ‘The Lord said to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand until I put your enemies under your feet.” ’ 45 If then David calls him ‘Lord,’ how can he be his son?” 46 No one could say a word in reply, and from that day on no one dared to ask him any more questions.

I often feel a sense of justice when Jesus gets the Pharisees to leave him alone. 

But then, I need to be careful to make sure that I’m paying attention to how much of a Pharisee that I can be sometimes! 

There must be hundreds of biblical passages where I think I have the right interpretation, but God wants to teach me a deeper, more profound truth. 

The temptation in me to believe that I have it all right is what holds me back from the truth God wants me to grasp, just like the Pharisees here. 

Lord, open my eyes to see and understand Your Word more fully. 

Written by Ps Justin Ware

2 replies
  1. Richard says:

    Well said Justin.

    Imagine no one asking you any more questions – for that is what is said here of Jesus. I think it was His depth of insight not his manner or tone that quieted the people. Yet I am sure this has not been the case with me. I think my approach, my tone has at times been the problem and not my depth of knowledge. It begs the question do I sit quietly in God’s presence. Do I reverently approach Him or advise Him on how things really are, well at least as I see it? It is good to learn, essential to learn to sit at Jesus’ feet.

    Father help me to learn to sit at Your feet that I may learn from You.

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Tuesday 5 April 2022

Matthew 22:34-40 (NIV)

34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” 37 Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

I wonder what the Pharisees were expecting when they posed this question to Jesus “which command is the greatest?” Do not murder? Honour your Father and Mother? (A personal favourite that I remind my kids of.) You shall have no other God’s but me?

But Jesus by-passes these altogether and heads for something so close to the Pharisees’ hearts – the Shema – from Deuteronomy 6:4-5 – “Hear, O Israel. The Lord our God, the Lord is One. Love the Lord you God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” But then Jesus sends them a real curve-ball, again not from the Law, but from God’s very heart. Jesus quotes Leviticus 19:18 “…love your neighbour as yourself.” What shock and surprise the Pharisees must have felt!

What priority do I place on these two commands? Do I wake loving God and praising Him for His kindness, His mercy that’s new everyday (see Lamentations 3:22-23)? And do I actively prioritise helping, reaching out, and loving those around me. Because Jesus said the law hangs on these two things. 

Jesus, this is not hard to understand. May the priority of my life start and finish with these commands of yours – to love You, and to love others. Amen

Written by Boudy Van Noppen

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Monday 4 April 2022

Matthew 22:23-33 (NIV)

23 That same day the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to him with a question. 24 “Teacher,” they said, “Moses told us that if a man dies without having children, his brother must marry the widow and raise up offspring for him. 25 Now there were seven brothers among us. The first one married and died, and since he had no children, he left his wife to his brother. 26 The same thing happened to the second and third brother, right on down to the seventh. 27 Finally, the woman died. 28 Now then, at the resurrection, whose wife will she be of the seven, since all of them were married to her?” 29 Jesus replied, “You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God. 30 At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven. 31 But about the resurrection of the dead—have you not read what God said to you, 32 ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? He is not the God of the dead but of the living.” 33 When the crowds heard this, they were astonished at his teaching.

Here in this passage, we see the Sadducees (religious people) challenging and trying to catch Jesus out with what they believe and what they think is truth.  They are not interested in a message of love, hope, peace, grace and unity, but a life lived by rules and regulations.  However, they don’t understand the scriptures they can recite.

I love Jesus’ answer (TPT translation) in verse 29:  Jesus answered them, “You are deluded, because your hearts are not filled with the revelation of the Scriptures or the power of God.” (you don’t know the scriptures and you don’t know the power of God)

The issue was all about marriage – and who this woman “belonged” to.  He redefines identity and gives her value in his reply.   He doesn’t look at us through the lens of who we are, where we have come from, how much money we have, what out titles or academic records are, whether we are married or single – He sees everyone with equal value.

What I see in this passage is that marriage does not define this woman or give her an identity or better value.  Our true identity is who we are in Christ.  Our true value is that we are all sons and daughters of the Living God – King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Let’s ensure that our hearts are filled with the revelation of the Scriptures and the power of God, so that you and I can bring a voice of value and transformation so that others can see how God sees and values them.  We have a big job to do – our voice will often be in opposition to that of the world.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus fill our hearts with a revelation of your power.  As we read your word (the Bible) reveal to us your love but also our value.  You see us as your children.  Help us to help others to see their value because you love them and strengthen their desire to follow you.  Reveal yourself afresh to us today.  In Jesus’ name.  Amen.

Written by Ps. Sue Botta

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Sunday 3 April 2022

Matthew 22:15-22 (NIV)

15 Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words. 16 They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. “Teacher,” they said, “we know that you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren’t swayed by others, because you pay no attention to who they are. 17 Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay the imperial tax to Caesar or not?” 18 But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, “You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? 19 Show me the coin used for paying the tax.” They brought him a denarius, 20 and he asked them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?” 21 “Caesar’s,” they replied. Then he said to them, “So give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.” 22 When they heard this, they were amazed. So they left him and went away.

Jesus answers the Pharisee’s attempt at trickery with a great question: “Whose image is this?” (referring to the coin used for paying tax).  When they replied that it was Caesar’s image on the coin, Jesus pointed out therefore the coin belonged to Caesar.

This prompted me to think of another related question – “Whose image is inscribed on you and me?  The bible tells us that we are made in the image of God, and that God’s image is deeply embedded on every human. 

I belong to God. He has fashioned me and destined me for His purposes. 

I clearly remember having this revelation when I was about 18 years old, and it changed everything for me. I was searching for my purpose and place in this world and the realization that my Creator had designed me for His purposes was exciting stuff and absolutely changed the trajectory of my life.

All these years later I can look back and see the hand of God on my life. It certainly hasn’t always been easy, but this truth has been my solid rock:  I belong to God.

Jesus’s words, “Give back to God what is God’s” are perhaps the best advice you will ever receive.

Written by Shelley Witt

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Saturday 2 April 2022

Matthew 22:1-14

1 Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying: 2 “The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding banquet for his son. 3 He sent his servants to those who had been invited to the banquet to tell them to come, but they refused to come. 4 “Then he sent some more servants and said, ‘Tell those who have been invited that I have prepared my dinner: My oxen and fattened cattle have been butchered, and everything is ready. Come to the wedding banquet.’ 5 “But they paid no attention and went off—one to his field, another to his business. 6 The rest seized his servants, mistreated them and killed them. 7 The king was enraged. He sent his army and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. 8 “Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding banquet is ready, but those I invited did not deserve to come. 9 So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’ 10 So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with guests. 11 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. 12 He asked, ‘How did you get in here without wedding clothes, friend?’ The man was speechless. 13 “Then the king told the attendants, ‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ 14 “For many are invited, but few are chosen.”

This is a beautiful parable of the grace of God. Of course, that’s not how the Pharisees would have perceived it. However, from the point of view of people who have been invited into God’s banquet (kingdom) we can see the gracious heart of God. The way he again invites those who had already rejected his invitation to such a special event, to the way he opens the invitation to the unconnected, the ordinary person in the street, the king’s graciousness of course mirrors God’s towards us.

His grace does not stop there. The king even provides the “proper clothes” for the occasion. Here the parable is a picture of the righteousness of Christ freely bestowed on us.  I imagine the invitation written by God to us:

“You are invited to celebrate eternal life with God, by his grace.
Dress: the righteousness of Jesus”

The man found to be not dressed in the wedding clothes tried to enter the event on his own merit, rejecting the grace offered by the host who had provided the special clothing. God offers clothing to each of us – the garments of salvation, and the robe of righteousness – Isaiah 61:10 says, “I delight greatly in the Lord, my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness.”

It is only by his grace I am saved – Ephesians 2:8-9.  Will I willingly accept the “clothes” he has prepared for me, or will I wear my “clothes”? Will I accept his grace, unconditionally given, or will I instead try to attain forgiveness and righteousness through my own efforts? This is such an easy trap to think we can gain “credit” with God somehow, to gain a seat at his banquet through what we have done or sacrificed.

Dear Lord Jesus

You have died for me and taken my punishment. You freely give me your righteousness. Why do I try to improve on that? Thank you for the beautiful robe of righteousness you have wrapped around me. This is how God sees me. Thank you. Amen

Written by Claire Moore

5 replies
  1. Sue says:

    This is the first time I have understood that the King issued wedding clothes to the guests – I have always wondered why the king sent this ‘guest’ to be flogged when as an underprivileged person he would not have appropriate clothes.
    I have never heard that the king issued the clothes.
    What am I missing?

  2. Sue Botta says:

    It is so comforting to know that God looks at the clothes of our heart and these are freely given not by what we can do.
    A Kingdom not driven by a worldly success and image.

    It is liberating to know that “success” is not what Jesus looks for but our hearts of love, mercy, kindness, goodness, self control, faithfulness, etc then we receive His salvation and His Righteousness.
    Thank you Jesus

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Friday 1 April 2022

Matthew 21:33-46

33 “Listen to another parable: There was a landowner who planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a winepress in it and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and moved to another place. 34 When the harvest time approached, he sent his servants to the tenants to collect his fruit. 35 “The tenants seized his servants; they beat one, killed another, and stoned a third. 36 Then he sent other servants to them, more than the first time, and the tenants treated them the same way. 37 Last of all, he sent his son to them. ‘They will respect my son,’ he said. 38 “But when the tenants saw the son, they said to each other, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him and take his inheritance.’ 39 So they took him and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. 40 “Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?” 41 “He will bring those wretches to a wretched end,” they replied, “and he will rent the vineyard to other tenants, who will give him his share of the crop at harvest time.” 42 Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: “ ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes’? 43 “Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit. 44 Anyone who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; anyone on whom it falls will be crushed.” 45 When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard Jesus’ parables, they knew he was talking about them. 46 They looked for a way to arrest him, but they were afraid of the crowd because the people held that he was a prophet.

This is the last of three parables that Jesus directed at his audience the chief priests and elders while in the temple. In this one Jesus is speaking about a vineyard, it’s owner and son. In the Old Testament the nation of Israel is often referred to as God’s vineyard. The imagery is not lost on his audience, they fully understood the parallels He was making. Being convicted, they wanted to be rid of him, v46.

I’ve been struck by the landowner, he set everything up for his tenants, he planted, put in security, installed everything they would need to live a good productive life, to flourish, and succeed. It was the tenants’ choice to disregard this and want to live life on their terms, take everything provided for themselves and do away with anyone related to the owner.

The parallel to our lives today has not changed. We would be wise not to disregard the Son (Jesus), to live how we want completely disregarding God the Father in this fabulous world he has given us. The chief priests, in verse 41, rightly described what would happen if we do … “He will bring those wretches to a wretched end,”.  Living for now disregards eternity and our creator God.

Oh Lord, I ask for mercy on all those who disregard your Son. Where we have not appreciated all that you have given us to lead a life that honours you in what we do, have mercy on us. Lord thank you for your mercy and forgiveness, may we always produce good fruit for your Kingdom.

Written by Suzie Hodgson

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