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Parables of Jesus

Loyal
This is an attempt to discuss all of the "parables" of Jesus. I will present them in the order they appear in the Bible. This isn't always chronological, but simply the order they are written in, starting with Matthew, and then
Mark, and so on. If we are going to call Jesus LORD, and we say we are his followers, shouldn't we at least know what He said and what He taught?

The first parable Jesus gives, is of course the parable of the sower.

Matt 13:3; And He spoke many things to them in parables, saying, "Behold, the sower went out to sow;
Matt 13:4; and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up.
Matt 13:5; "Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil.
Matt 13:6; "But when the sun had risen, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.
Matt 13:7; "Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out.
Matt 13:8; "And others fell on the good soil and *yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty.
Matt 13:9; "He who has ears, let him hear."

This particular parable was discussed recently in another thread. This parable is also somewhat unique in that it is one of the few that Jesus actually explains in plain language.

We don't have to guess too much on this one. Jesus tells us exactly what it means.

But why did Jesus speak in parables? Why didn't He just plainly say what He was teaching?
The answer is in Matthew 13.

Matt 13:10 And the disciples came and said to Him, "Why do You speak to them in parables?"
Matt 13:11 Jesus answered them, "To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted.
Matt 13:12 "For whoever has, to him more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him.
Matt 13:13 "Therefore I speak to them in parables; because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.
Matt 13:14 "In their case the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, which says, 'YOU WILL KEEP ON HEARING, BUT WILL NOT UNDERSTAND; YOU WILL KEEP ON SEEING, BUT WILL NOT PERCEIVE;
Matt 13:15 FOR THE HEART OF THIS PEOPLE HAS BECOME DULL, WITH THEIR EARS THEY SCARCELY HEAR, AND THEY HAVE CLOSED THEIR EYES, OTHERWISE THEY WOULD SEE WITH THEIR EYES, HEAR WITH THEIR EARS, AND UNDERSTAND WITH THEIR HEART AND RETURN, AND I WOULD HEAL THEM.'
Matt 13:16 "But blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because they hear.
Matt 13:17 "For truly I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

It seems the parables separate people. Those who have been "granted" to know the mysteries, and those who haven't. Those who have "much given" and those who have things taken away. Those who can "see" and "hear"
and those who cannot.

It isn't God who closes their eyes and ears here. Jesus says... "they" have closed their eyes. Otherwise they would see and hear and understand.... and... I would heal them.

Jesus says many prophets and righteous men (in the old testament) desired to see what you see.
They longed to hear what you hear. These prophets and men of God were looking for the Messiah. God Himself to become flesh and dwell amongst us. When Jesus spoke.. it was the very voice of God speaking to men. They wanted to see and hear this, but never got the chance.
 
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Loyal
The parable of the sower explained. (not by me, but by Jesus)

Matt 13:18; "Hear then the parable of the sower.
Matt 13:19; "When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is the one on whom seed was sown beside the road.
Matt 13:20; "The one on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, this is the man who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy;
Matt 13:21; yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary, and when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he falls away.
Matt 13:22; "And the one on whom seed was sown among the thorns, this is the man who hears the word, and the worry of the world and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.
Matt 13:23; "And the one on whom seed was sown on the good soil, this is the man who hears the word and understands it; who indeed bears fruit and brings forth, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty."
 
Loyal
The second parable... the wheat and the tares (weeds).

Matt 13:24; Jesus presented another parable to them, saying, "The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field.
Matt 13:25; "But while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went away.
Matt 13:26; "But when the wheat sprouted and bore grain, then the tares became evident also.
Matt 13:27; "The slaves of the landowner came and said to him, 'Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have tares?'
Matt 13:28; "And he said to them, 'An enemy has done this!' The slaves *said to him, 'Do you want us, then, to go and gather them up?'
Matt 13:29; "But he *said, 'No; for while you are gathering up the tares, you may uproot the wheat with them.
Matt 13:30; 'Allow both to grow together until the harvest; and in the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers, "First gather up the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them up; but gather the wheat into my barn."'"

Jesus talked about "the kingdom of heaven" more than any other subject. (yes, even money).
This parable starts off.... "the kingdom of heaven may be compared to"....

The sower here only plants "good seed". We often think these are "good people" (believers) and "bad people" (unbelievers)...
But Jesus says... Luke 8:11; "Now the parable is this: the seed is the word of God.

The seed isn't people. The seed is the word of God. When the seed grows within us (sprouted and bore grain) it becomes "wheat". A lot of good things are made
from wheat. But "the enemy" came and planted weeds amongst the wheat. If the good seed is the word of God, what would the bad seed be?
False teachings. The word of someone else besides God. Now how do weeds grow? Not many people go out and plant "weed seeds". But eventually
whatever was planted grows into a weed.

The "slaves" (some Bible say servants, or hired hands)... we (believers) are the slaves in this story. We can ask Jesus... how did this false teaching get here?
How did it get right here in your kingdom? Right here in the masters field where He planted "good seed".

The slaves ask the master... should we pull up the tares? Should we get rid of everyone who doesn't believe the same teachings we do?
And the master (Jesus is the landowner in this story) says no... you might accidentally pull up some of the wheat also.
I wonder if Jesus questions our ability to tell wheat from a weed?

The landowner says... "allow both to grow together". A curious statement. Then I will say to the reapers... ( i believe these are angels)

Matt 13:41; "The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all stumbling blocks, and those who commit lawlessness,
Matt 24:31; "And He will send forth His angels with A GREAT TRUMPET and THEY WILL GATHER TOGETHER His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other.
Mark 13:27; "And then He will send forth the angels, and will gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest end of the earth to the farthest end of heaven.

The "reapers" are the one gather up "the elect", but also they gather up.. "all stumbling blocks, and those commit lawlessness". (weeds and tares).
We might not be under the law... but we still can't continue living in "lawlessness" (sin).

1 Jn 3:4; Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness.
 
Loyal
Third parable

Matt 13:31; He presented another parable to them, saying, "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field;
Mat 13:32; and this is smaller than all other seeds, but when it is full grown, it is larger than the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that THE BIRDS OF THE AIR come and NEST IN ITS BRANCHES."

Again Jesus is speaking about "the kingdom of heaven". The mustard seed is a very small seed.... but some species of mustard produce a very large tree.
It is thought that Jesus is quoting Ezekiel here.

Ezek 17:23; "On the high mountain of Israel I will plant it, that it may bring forth boughs and bear fruit and become a stately cedar. And birds of every kind will nest under it; they will nest in the shade of its branches.

The "kingdom" really started with one man... Jesus. Then it was 12 men. It started as a very small seed. And now... there are hundreds of millions of Christians.
Birds of every kind... from every nation. Who "nest" in the kingdom of God. This is our temporary home... until we reach our permanent home. But that little small
seed has grown into quite the tree.

The "high mountain" that Ezekiel speaks of would be Mt. Zion, where the New Jerusalem will be.
 
Loyal
Fourth parable.

Matt 13:33; He spoke another parable to them, "The kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three pecks of flour until it was all leavened."

Once again.. Jesus is speaking about "the kingdom". This is one of the shortest parables... one one verse.
You wouldn't think anything Jesus said would be controversial, but some people take this verse in a positive way... they take it to mean the kingdom will grow and swell
like leavened dough.

Others take this is a negative way... they think anytime the Bible speaks of leaven it is about being "puffed up". They seem to believe that "puffed up" (self-righteous) people will also be in the kingdom.
 
Loyal
Matt 13:24; Jesus presented another parable to them, saying, "The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field.
Matt 13:25; "But while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went away.
Matt 13:26; "But when the wheat sprouted and bore grain, then the tares became evident also.
Matt 13:27; "The slaves of the landowner came and said to him, 'Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have tares?'
Matt 13:28; "And he said to them, 'An enemy has done this!' The slaves *said to him, 'Do you want us, then, to go and gather them up?'
Matt 13:29; "But he *said, 'No; for while you are gathering up the tares, you may uproot the wheat with them.
Matt 13:30; 'Allow both to grow together until the harvest; and in the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers, "First gather up the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them up; but gather the wheat into my barn."'"
This is yet another parable that Jesus explains in plain language. But He only explains it to the disciples when they are away from the crowds.

Matt 13:36; Then He left the crowds and went into the house. And His disciples came to Him and said, "Explain to us the parable of the tares of the field."
Matt 13:37; And He said, "The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man,
Matt 13:38; and the field is the world; and as for the good seed, these are the sons of the kingdom; and the tares are the sons of the evil one;
Matt 13:39; and the enemy who sowed them is the devil, and the harvest is the end of the age; and the reapers are angels.
Matt 13:40; "So just as the tares are gathered up and burned with fire, so shall it be at the end of the age.
Matt 13:41; "The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all stumbling blocks, and those who commit lawlessness,
Matt 13:42; and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Matt 13:43; "Then THE RIGHTEOUS WILL SHINE FORTH AS THE SUN in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.

I don't think I can explain Jesus's parable better than Jesus Himself, so the only thing I will add is.... pay attention to the small details.
Who is the sower? Who is the field? Who are the two types of seeds? Who sowed the two types of seeds? When are the tares gathered up?
Who gathers them up? What is done with the tares after they are gathered up? All the answers are in this explanation.
 
Loyal
Matt 13:34; All these things Jesus spoke to the crowds in parables, and He did not speak to them without a parable.
Matt 13:35; This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet: "I WILL OPEN MY MOUTH IN PARABLES; I WILL UTTER THINGS HIDDEN SINCE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD."

Now some people take this to mean Jesus "always" spoke in parables, and never said anything that wasn't a mystery or a hidden meaning parable.
This simply isn't true. It seems Jesus had one way of teaching the multitudes that followed Him through the hills, and another way to teach in the temple.

Matt 13:53; When Jesus had finished these parables, He departed from there.
Matt 13:54; He came to His hometown and began teaching them in their synagogue, so that they were astonished, and said, "Where did this man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers?

But even after this... Jesus went back to telling parables on occasion. Later on in Matthew for example he tells a parable of lost sheep ( Matt 18:10-14; )
and another parable in Matt 18:21-35; ... (we will get to those).
 
Loyal
Matt 13:44; "The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in the field, which a man found and hid again; and from joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.

Another short, one-verse parable. Yet again about... you guessed it... the kingdom of God.

This reminds me of the woman who anointed Jesus's feet with costly perfume. Some people sell everything to follow Jesus.
They give everything (some even give their lives) to follow Jesus. We could even take this say (the man) gave up everything in his past
to follow Jesus.
 
Loyal
The next parable is very similar.

Matt 13:45; "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking fine pearls,
Matt 13:46; and upon finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it.

This also is about the kingdom of heaven. I think we are all looking some something. Something to fulfill us.
Cars, money, women, alcohol, drugs, fame, popularity, sports, animals, even our children and grand-children.
How much time, money and effort do we spend pursuing these things?

Once we find that thing that really fulfills that deep longing within us... (Jesus) nothing else matters.
We are willing to give up everything to follow Jesus.
 
Loyal
Matt 13:18; "Hear then the parable of the sower.
Matt 13:19; "When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is the one on whom seed was sown beside the road.
Matt 13:20; "The one on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, this is the man who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy;
Matt 13:21; yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary, and when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he falls away.
Matt 13:22; "And the one on whom seed was sown among the thorns, this is the man who hears the word, and the worry of the world and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.
Matt 13:23; "And the one on whom seed was sown on the good soil, this is the man who hears the word and understands it; who indeed bears fruit and brings forth, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty."

I love this, as it really drives home the point of studying the word of God. A speak with a lot of "Christians" and it seems they think its really not necessary to study the word of God, they know what wrong and right is.
 
Active
I think its necessary to study His word I very much doubt that a person can claim to be a christian and ignore what Jesus says. If Jesus were here on earth would they be hanging on to every word He says or would they have the same attitude, would they be like I already heard that one. Yeah yeah. JEsus is passing through town but he just says the same old thing, I dont need to go and hear him.

I would not be like that! If Jesus came to my town I would drop anything I was doing that day to go and see and hear him speak. Even if I had heard it through someone else many times before. I would want to go and hear the words from His own mouth.
 
Loyal
Matt 13:47; "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet cast into the sea, and gathering fish of every kind;
Matt 13:48; and when it was filled, they drew it up on the beach; and they sat down and gathered the good fish into containers, but the bad they threw away.
Matt 13:49; "So it will be at the end of the age; the angels will come forth and take out the wicked from among the righteous,
Matt 13:50; and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Once again Jesus is using a parable to talk about "the kingdom".
The particular parable is very similar to the wheat and tares. Just like the Master's field that had both wheat and tares in it... we see a dragnet that has both good and bad
fish in it. There are bad fish and tares in the kingdom. Some of them just don't know they are bad fish yet.
And like the wheat gets separated from weeds and the end, so it is the same with the good fish and bad fish. The angels come and separate the wicked from the righteous.
It's interesting that in both these parables (wheat and tares - dragnet) it is the angels that separate the good from the bad. Not the Master (Jesus).

Back to the tares for a moment...

Matt 13:40; "So just as the tares are gathered up and burned with fire, so shall it be at the end of the age.
Matt 13:41; "The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all stumbling blocks, and those who commit lawlessness,
Matt 13:42; and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

It seems it is the angels that remove the wicked in both of these parables. In verse 50 above... the bad fish are thrown into the furnace of fire... where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth.
 
Loyal
We have to jump five whole chapters ahead now to Matthew 18 before Jesus gives another parable.

Matt 18:10; "See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven continually see the face of My Father who is in heaven.
Matt 18:11; ["For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost.]
Matt 18:12; "What do you think? If any man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go and search for the one that is straying?
Matt 18:13; "If it turns out that he finds it, truly I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine which have not gone astray.
Matt 18:14; "So it is not the will of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones perish.

There are sheep all over the world, almost all of them belong to some specific person.
Some "sheep" belong to Jesus. But some "sheep" do not belong to Jesus. Some belong to (another shepherd).
But Jesus cares about His sheep. In this particular parable He doesn't care so much about the other sheep... only His sheep.
If one of "His" sheep goes astray (apparently some of His sheep go astray from time to time) He goes out to find them.
Jesus doesn't just let us walk away without trying to get us back.
 
Active
Well, sheep can be prone to wandering, although they do prefer to stick together as safety in numbers in a flock.

But they dont climb all over the place and rebel like goats do. People often refer to children as kids because they act like little goats. And so they just leave them alone, and even give them junk food, cos kids will eat anything!

I often wonder why many christian parents dont call their children lambs and call them or go after them if they do go astray. After all arent they meant to be sheep. They cant look after themselves.

Jesus is saying dont despise his little ones, meaning his lambs.
 
Loyal
Matt 18:21; Then Peter came and said to Him, "Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?"
Matt 18:22; Jesus *said to him, "I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.
Matt 18:23; "For this reason the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his slaves.
Matt 18:24; "When he had begun to settle them, one who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him.
Matt 18:25; "But since he did not have the means to repay, his lord commanded him to be sold, along with his wife and children and all that he had, and repayment to be made.
Matt 18:26; "So the slave fell to the ground and prostrated himself before him, saying, 'Have patience with me and I will repay you everything.'
Matt 18:27; "And the lord of that slave felt compassion and released him and forgave him the debt.
Matt 18:28; "But that slave went out and found one of his fellow slaves who owed him a hundred denarii; and he seized him and began to choke him, saying, 'Pay back what you owe.'
Matt 18:29; "So his fellow slave fell to the ground and began to plead with him, saying, 'Have patience with me and I will repay you.'
Matt 18:30; "But he was unwilling and went and threw him in prison until he should pay back what was owed.
Matt 18:31; "So when his fellow slaves saw what had happened, they were deeply grieved and came and reported to their lord all that had happened.
Matt 18:32; "Then summoning him, his lord *said to him, 'You wicked slave, I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me.
Matt 18:33; 'Should you not also have had mercy on your fellow slave, in the same way that I had mercy on you?'
Matt 18:34; "And his lord, moved with anger, handed him over to the torturers until he should repay all that was owed him.
Matt 18:35; "My heavenly Father will also do the same to you, if each of you does not forgive his brother from your heart."

If there ever was a parable about the importance of forgiveness, this would be it. This is one of Jesus's longer parables. It starts with Peter asking Jesus
how often he should forgive someone. Again... it mentions the kingdom of heaven.

We all owe a huge debt. Bigger than any of us could ever pay. The wages of sin is death. So someone else... Someone who didn't deserve to die, took our place.
Took our sins upon Himself and paid the price for our sins. This same man (Jesus) is called the King of kings.

He has forgiven us of all of sins. But is possible for us to still do sins that we will be punished for. Not forgiving others is one of those sins.
Some people take this to mean that eventually have a way "out". Seven times seventy is 490 times. You sinned against me 491 times, so I don't have to forgive you.
I think if we are counting how many times someone sins against us... we are missing the point. Jesus wants us to forgive... a lot.
Since Jesus forgave us... we should forgive others. I guarantee you Jesus has forgiven you more than once or twice. Probably more than 490 times.

Of course the servant (you and me) that the king (Jesus) forgave was happy to accept forgiveness from the king. But he was unwilling to give forgiveness to
someone else.

There are places in the new testament that Jesus says He forgave people sins... even though they didn't ask Him. But in this parable, the king forgave the servant
"because you pleaded with me" (verse 32) .

There are churches and Christians who teach Jesus automatically forgives all sins, and there are no consequences for sin after you are saved... "WRONG!!"
It says here that if don't forgive others... whatever consequence that they face because of it... we will face the same consequence.

Matt 6:15; "But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.

If you don't forgive... you won't be forgiven. People say the only unforgivable sin is blasphemy of the Holy Spirit.... that one may be true even if you forgive
other people. But there are other sins that won't be forgiven either.... unless you forgive.

So the king hands the servant over to the torturers.... Some people think "God is love" and He would never do this. But it says right here, He "WILL" do this.
Unless we forgive other people "from your heart". That last bit.... from your heart. Doesn't mean... *sigh* I guess I'll forgive them if I have to, but I'll still hold
a grudge.
 
Loyal
Matt 20:1; "For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard.
Matt 20:2; "When he had agreed with the laborers for a denarius for the day, he sent them into his vineyard.
Matt 20:3; "And he went out about the third hour and saw others standing idle in the market place;
Matt 20:4; and to those he said, 'You also go into the vineyard, and whatever is right I will give you.' And so they went.
Matt 20:5; "Again he went out about the sixth and the ninth hour, and did the same thing.
Matt 20:6; "And about the eleventh hour he went out and found others standing around; and he *said to them, 'Why have you been standing here idle all day long?'
Matt 20:7; "They *said to him, 'Because no one hired us.' He *said to them, 'You go into the vineyard too.'
Matt 20:8; "When evening came, the owner of the vineyard *said to his foreman, 'Call the laborers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last group to the first.'
Matt 20:9; "When those hired about the eleventh hour came, each one received a denarius.
Matt 20:10; "When those hired first came, they thought that they would receive more; but each of them also received a denarius.
Matt 20:11; "When they received it, they grumbled at the landowner,
Matt 20:12; saying, 'These last men have worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden and the scorching heat of the day.'
Matt 20:13; "But he answered and said to one of them, 'Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for a denarius?
Matt 20:14; 'Take what is yours and go, but I wish to give to this last man the same as to you.
Matt 20:15; 'Is it not lawful for me to do what I wish with what is my own? Or is your eye envious because I am generous?'
Matt 20:16; "So the last shall be first, and the first last."

A lot of speculation is made about this parable, but I think this one is simple. As usual, Jesus starts the parable off with "the kingdom of heaven is like..."
The denarius that everyone receives here... is simply salvation. It doesn't matter when you get saved.
The people that get saved when they are 80 or 90 years old and just as saved as the people who get saved when they are 8 or 9 years old.

Of course this parable is speaking of laborers. Workers. Works might not save us... but some work is expected at some point.
There are some Christians who feel that they are "better" Christians or somehow "more worthy" because they have been saved longer than others.
These people feel they should get a bigger reward. This parable isn't about rewards, however there are other passages that talk about rewards.

Verse 12 seems to be the heart of this passage.
"'These last men have worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden and the scorching heat of the day.'"

There are people who get saved very late in life. Perhaps on their deathbed in the last moments of their lives.
(Some Christians do not even believe in deathbed salvation... perhaps for the same reason as these men... but others say they were never baptized)

It doesn't seen fair that some of us have been out fighting the battle. Struggling against sin for many years. Involved in a ministry trying to bring
souls to Jesus. Some have even been persecuted, or imprisoned for their beliefs. Some have been whipped and beaten. Some of us have been laughed at.
Friends and family have disowned us over the years.

And along comes someone in the waning moments of their life and receives Jesus just a few hours/days/months/years before they die. ... they are just as
saved as those of us who have been out in the fields for a long time.
 
Loyal
Matt 21:28; "But what do you think? A man had two sons, and he came to the first and said, 'Son, go work today in the vineyard.'
Matt 21:29; "And he answered, 'I will not'; but afterward he regretted it and went.
Matt 21:30; "The man came to the second and said the same thing; and he answered, 'I will, sir'; but he did not go.
Matt 21:31; "Which of the two did the will of his father?" They *said, "The first." Jesus *said to them, "Truly I say to you that the tax collectors and prostitutes will get into the kingdom of God before you.
Matt 21:32; "For John came to you in the way of righteousness and you did not believe him; but the tax collectors and prostitutes did believe him; and you, seeing this, did not even feel remorse afterward so as to believe him.

There are many men in the world today who have many sons. But this parable is about a specific man (God) who has two sons. These two sons represent two kinds of people.
Both are "sons of God". The parable makes it clear that it isn't only one who is a son. They both are.
But the Father tells them both to go "work" in the vineyard. Like the previous parable... in this parable work is expected.
Jesus gave us the "great commission". Which is really the "only" commission that He gave us.

Mark 16:15; And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.
Mark 16:16; "He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.

The version in Matthew is similar.

Matt 28:19; "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,
Matt 28:20; teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."

One of the sons said they would go do the work the Father asked him to do. But he never went and did it.
The other son said he wasn't going out to do the work, but then later went out and did the work.

Which kind of "son" are you?
Jesus asks the question... which of the two sons did the will of his Father?

In verse 32 Jesus says.... "For John came to you in the way of righteousness" what was the righteous way that John the Baptist came with?

Mark 1:4; John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.
Acts 13:24; after John had proclaimed before His coming a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel.
Acts 19:4; Paul said, "John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in Him who was coming after him, that is, in Jesus."

Yes baptism, but more than that... "repentance".

Jesus finishes that sentence with... "and you did not believe him; but the tax collectors and prostitutes did believe him; and you, seeing this, did not even feel remorse afterward so as to believe him."

Some people don't believe repentance is required. The Pharisee that Jesus was talking to didn't either. Jesus says... you don't even feel any guilt (remorse) about the things you do
because you didn't believe him. (John the Baptist).
 
Loyal
Before we get to the next parable... I would like to backtrack and do some research. Let us look at Isaiah for a moment.

Isa 5:1; Let me sing now for my well-beloved A song of my beloved concerning His vineyard. My well-beloved had a vineyard on a fertile hill.
Isa 5:2; He dug it all around, removed its stones, And planted it with the choicest vine. And He built a tower in the middle of it And also hewed out a wine vat in it; Then He expected it to produce good grapes, But it produced only worthless ones.
Isa 5:3; "And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah, Judge between Me and My vineyard.
Isa 5:4; "What more was there to do for My vineyard that I have not done in it? Why, when I expected it to produce good grapes did it produce worthless ones?
Isa 5:5; "So now let Me tell you what I am going to do to My vineyard: I will remove its hedge and it will be consumed; I will break down its wall and it will become trampled ground.
Isa 5:6; "I will lay it waste; It will not be pruned or hoed, But briars and thorns will come up. I will also charge the clouds to rain no rain on it."
Isa 5:7; For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel And the men of Judah His delightful plant. Thus He looked for justice, but behold, bloodshed; For righteousness, but behold, a cry of distress.

This is a passage about a vineyard with a press (vat) in it and a tower in it.
Now it says that " He expected it to produce good grapes" but this isn't what He got... "But it produced only worthless ones"

So the "vinekeeper" says... judge between me and my vineyard...
"What more was there to do for My vineyard that I have not done in it? Why, when I expected it to produce good grapes did it produce worthless ones?

I planted it "with the choicest vine" (Jesus) and removed all the rocks.... but it only produced worthless grapes. This is very similar to the passage about the barren tree
that produced no fruit. ( Luke 13:6-9; )
Verse 7 here tells us the "vineyard" is the house of Israel.

... OK... so what does this have to do with the parables of Jesus?

Matt 21:33; "Listen to another parable. There was a landowner who PLANTED A VINEYARD AND PUT A WALL AROUND IT AND DUG A WINE PRESS IN IT, AND BUILT A TOWER, and rented it out to vine-growers and went on a journey.
Matt 21:34; "When the harvest time approached, he sent his slaves to the vine-growers to receive his produce.
Matt 21:35; "The vine-growers took his slaves and beat one, and killed another, and stoned a third.
Matt 21:36; "Again he sent another group of slaves larger than the first; and they did the same thing to them.
Matt 21:37; "But afterward he sent his son to them, saying, 'They will respect my son.'
Matt 21:38; "But when the vine-growers saw the son, they said among themselves, 'This is the heir; come, let us kill him and seize his inheritance.'
Matt 21:39; "They took him, and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him.
Matt 21:40; "Therefore when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vine-growers?"
Matt 21:41; They *said to Him, "He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, and will rent out the vineyard to other vine-growers who will pay him the proceeds at the proper seasons."
Matt 21:42; Jesus *said to them, "Did you never read in the Scriptures, 'THE STONE WHICH THE BUILDERS REJECTED, THIS BECAME THE CHIEF CORNER stone; THIS CAME ABOUT FROM THE LORD, AND IT IS MARVELOUS IN OUR EYES'?
Matt 21:43; "Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people, producing the fruit of it.
Matt 21:44; "And he who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; but on whomever it falls, it will scatter him like dust."
Matt 21:45; When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard His parables, they understood that He was speaking about them.

It seems Jesus starts this parable off quoting from Isaiah. Comparing the "house of Israel" to a vineyard.
Just like in Isaiah... he is expecting a good yield from the field. He sends in his men (the prophets of the old testament) to go receive the produce.
But instead the are beaten, stoned, and killed. We can find a few stories in the old testament that bear witness to this.
So He send a second group... larger than the first group. The vine-growers do the same thing to this group as well... they kill them also.
So finally He sends His Son to them.... He thinks they will respect His Son. ( Jesus) But no they didn't accept Him either, they threw Him out and killed Him also.

Jesus knew what was about to happen. It had already started. He knew the Son would be killed in this story.
Jesus asks the listeners here.... "What do you think the owner of the vineyard will do to those vine-growers?" ( verse 40 )

Jesus then quotes Psalms 118:22-23; to emphasis that He is the chief cornerstone that was rejected.

In verse 45 it says the Pharisees understood that Jesus was talking about them. They represented "the house of Israel" here. They are the ones who rejected the chief cornerstone
and killed the vineyard owners Son.

After this the Pharisee sought to kill Jesus. (They eventually do, at least for a few days).
 
Loyal
Matt 21:44; "And he who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; but on whomever it falls, it will scatter him like dust."
For some reason I forgot to add this.... Jesus is the (corner)stone here. He says whoever falls on this stone will be broken.
but then He says... whoever the stone falls on will be scattered like dust.

This can be taken a number of ways.
1. If we fall on our knees before Jesus and confess Him as Lord, He will break us (break our hearts of stone).
2. There have always been people trying to get rid of Christianity and the testimony of Jesus for the last 2,000 years. But those people are dead and gone.
The gospel of Jesus still remains.
3. On the "last day" when Jesus returns, Jesus will come on a white horse wielding a sword. The armies of the earth will be shattered before Him like dust.
 
Loyal
Matt 22:1; Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying,
Matt 22:2; "The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding feast for his son.
Matt 22:3; "And he sent out his slaves to call those who had been invited to the wedding feast, and they were unwilling to come.
Matt 22:4; "Again he sent out other slaves saying, 'Tell those who have been invited, "Behold, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and my fattened livestock are all butchered and everything is ready; come to the wedding feast."'
Matt 22:5; "But they paid no attention and went their way, one to his own farm, another to his business,
Matt 22:6; and the rest seized his slaves and mistreated them and killed them.
Matt 22:7; "But the king was enraged, and he sent his armies and destroyed those murderers and set their city on fire.
Matt 22:8; "Then he *said to his slaves, 'The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy.
Matt 22:9; 'Go therefore to the main highways, and as many as you find there, invite to the wedding feast.'
Matt 22:10; "Those slaves went out into the streets and gathered together all they found, both evil and good; and the wedding hall was filled with dinner guests.
Matt 22:11; "But when the king came in to look over the dinner guests, he saw a man there who was not dressed in wedding clothes,
Matt 22:12; and he *said to him, 'Friend, how did you come in here without wedding clothes?' And the man was speechless.
Matt 22:13; "Then the king said to the servants, 'Bind him hand and foot, and throw him into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'
Matt 22:14; "For many are called, but few are chosen."

Once again Jesus is peaking in a parable about ... what else? The kingdom of heaven.
This parable is similar to the previous parable, but is also about being appreciative of what Jesus did for us.

The Father (king) is going to give a feast for His Son. It seems this feast will be to honor the Son.
Now of course everyone is invited to this feast. ... but some people were unwilling to come.
So the king sends His servants out a second time, telling these people how wonderful the feast will be.
... but still, these people paid no attention. They don't realize what an honor they have been given in being invited
to this feast. Some of these people even mistreat and kill the kings servants. ( How many prophets and missionaries
have been killed trying to tell people "about the feast").

So the king is enraged. One day those who refuse to honor the Son will face the wrath of God.
The kings says those who were originally invited are not worthy. This is often taken to mean the Jews.
But it could also mean anyone who rejects Jesus.

The kings send his servants out the third time. To "the main highways". He says invite everyone you can find.
God doesn't deny anyone to come to the table.
Verse 10 above says "both evil and good" were invited to the feast. ... and the wedding hall was filled with guests.

Now even though these people were invited, they were expected to clean up, and put on their "Sunday best" to come
to the wedding feast. The king comes out and looks the guests over.... there is a man who has not changed his
clothes and cleaned up among the guests. We already see both evil and good were invited... what made this
mans different? What made his clothes unworthy of the wedding?

The king tells call this man.. "friend". ( Greek: hetairos ). This is unlike those in Matthew 7 whom He tells I never knew you.
He asks the man... how did you get in here without the right clothes?

It seems the right clothes matter. What are these clothes? This is somewhat similar to Rev 3.

Rev 3:17; 'Because you say, "I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing," and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked,
Rev 3:18; I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see.

Not everyone who is invited to the wedding feast for the Son gets to stay. Only those with the right clothes.

"Then the king said to the servants, 'Bind him hand and foot, and throw him into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'

There are some who are chosen. But even though they are chosen, they end up not being worthy.

Matt 10:38; "And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.
Matt 22:8; ""Then he *said to his slaves, 'The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy.
Luke 9:62; But Jesus said to him, ""No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God."

Now of course none of us are "worthy" without Jesus. But what makes these people unworthy even though they were initially invited to the feast?

Jesus chose Judas.... but He knew who and what Judas was from the beginning.
He may choose some of us today.... He chose the seventy other disciples.

Luke 10:1; Now after this the Lord appointed seventy others, and sent them in pairs ahead of Him to every city and place where He Himself was going to come.
Luke 10:17; The seventy returned with joy, saying, "Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name."

But apparently they didn't continue to take up their cross.... or perhaps they looked back after starting to plow....
in any case.... many of them quit following Jesus.

John 6:66; As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore.

This parable ends with....

Matt 22:14; "For many are called, but few are chosen."

Luke 13:24; "Strive to enter through the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able.
 

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