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Hey there reader!  May God Bless you in your day, week month and year.  Lets remember today that when God puts hardship in front of us it is a blessing.  He is interacting with you!  Guiding you.

Today we will be scuba diving into the title parable.  There are three times in the Bible this parable is presented to us.  What Matthew witnessed and wrote is from King James’s version, Mark’s is from the New Holman Christian Standard Version (in today’s vernacular and much easier to understand), and Luke’s is from the New King James Version.

Matthew 21:33-46 King James Version (KJV)

33 Hear another parable: There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country:

34 And when the time of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, that they might receive the fruits of it.

35 And the husbandmen took his servants, and beat one, and killed another, and stoned another.

36 Again, he sent other servants more than the first: and they did unto them likewise.

37 But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence my son.

38 But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance.

39 And they caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard, and slew him.

40 When the lord therefore of the vineyard cometh, what will he do unto those husbandmen?

41 They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.

42 Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?

43 Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.

44 And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.

45 And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them.

46 But when they sought to lay hands on him, they feared the multitude, because they took him for a prophet.

Mark 12:1-12 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

12 Then He began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard, put a fence around it, dug out a pit for a winepress, and built a watchtower. Then he leased it to tenant farmers and went away. At harvest time he sent a slave to the farmers to collect some of the fruit of the vineyard from the farmers. But they took him, beat him, and sent him away empty-handed. Again he sent another slave to them, and they[a] hit him on the head and treated him shamefully.[b] Then he sent another, and they killed that one. He also sent many others; they beat some and they killed some.

“He still had one to send, a beloved son. Finally he sent him to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’

“But those tenant farmers said among themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him, and the inheritance will be ours!’ So they seized him, killed him, and threw him out of the vineyard.

“Therefore, what will the owner[c] of the vineyard do? He will come and destroy the farmers and give the vineyard to others. 10 Haven’t you read this Scripture:

The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone.[d]
11 This came from the Lord
and is wonderful in our eyes?”[e]

12 Because they knew He had said this parable against them, they were looking for a way to arrest Him, but they were afraid of the crowd. So they left Him and went away.

Luke 20:9-19 New King James Version (NKJV)

Then He began to tell the people this parable: “A certain man planted a vineyard, leased it to vinedressers, and went into a far country for a long time. 10 Now at vintage-time he sent a servant to the vinedressers, that they might give him some of the fruit of the vineyard. But the vinedressers beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 11 Again he sent another servant; and they beat him also, treated him shamefully, and sent him away empty-handed. 12 And again he sent a third; and they wounded him also and cast him out.

13 “Then the owner of the vineyard said, ‘What shall I do? I will send my beloved son. Probably they will respect him when they see him.’ 14 But when the vinedressers saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours.’ 15 So they cast him out of the vineyard and killed him. Therefore what will the owner of the vineyard do to them? 16 He will come and destroy those vinedressers and give the vineyard to others.”

And when they heard it they said, “Certainly not!”

17 Then He looked at them and said, “What then is this that is written:

‘The stone which the builders rejected
Has become the chief cornerstone’?[a]

18 Whoever falls on that stone will be broken; but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder.”

19 And the chief priests and the scribes that very hour sought to lay hands on Him, but they feared the people[b] —for they knew He had spoken this parable against them.

Prerequisite info that can be skipped:

Jesus and God are one in the same; this is proven by a great many combinations of scriptures but the ones that I am choosing to drive home His point are:  Genesis 1:1 / Isaiah 43:10 /Isaiah 44:24 / Hebrews 1:2

With this being said lets understand that Our Savior became man so that He could live like a man.  He experienced the ups and downs of life.  Being man and God though we have to realize that He is the Creator.  It does not say this in scripture but after seeing the way that scripture has affected the lives that share the world I am inclined to see that the things Jesus did were not fortuitous.  He arrived exactly when He arrived to each of the events written about in His life.  The spiritual world is a complicated mobile of social and physical things that we have an affect on based on our intentions and the things we do because of these intentions.  The prophets of the Old Testament and the faithful people such as Moses and Abraham were preparing the way for Christ Jesus.  They affected that complicated matrices of the spiritual world in such a way that prepared the universe for the coming of God so that He will save us and perform many signs and wonders to help our faith along.

We as humans walk into a new situation ready for anything and with a certain adaptability so we will be ready to take on anything that comes our way.  When Jesus entered situations He had faith that His Father had prepared the way for Him.  God being ubiquitous and Jesus being God makes that point easy to understand on the surface.  God knows everything about whats going on everywhere and at every time, past, present and future, all the time.

Jesus’ life on earth serves such an awesome purpose and there is absolutely no Hoodwink about it.  We are to believe in Jesus.  When we strive to believe in Jesus He will work in our lives.  We have eternal life when we are actively believing.  The people who are actively believing at that moment make up God’s Church.  It is important for us to know that God will work in this world through that network and we must try to get along with believer’s and non believers.  He will change people on His schedule and we are to always be ready to drop our pride and change who we are according only to The relationship we have with Him through the Living Word

What I Gleaned:

The vineyard is the world.  The husbandmen are people in the world.  The Landowner is God.  The servants (how the heck does someone who has so many con-founded servants make the same mistake over and over again) are prophets, disciples and other people who are acting in the name of God.  The Son is Jesus Christ.  Time for some scuba diving.  Let’s suit up, and dive into Our Creator’s Living Word.

The Land owner built the vineyard in such a way that breeds mistrust with it’s hedge and watchtower.  This watchtower and the presence of mistrust is elemental in this parable as it is what brings in the presence of evil.  Let’s discover how.

Jesus chooses to tell this parable with a watchtower because it shows us one way evil slips into our lives.  Lets think about what would have happened to the first servant if the men had no watchtower there.  Try to put yourself in the story and imagine how things would happen and the thoughts and feelings you would be having if you were a character in the story.  When the first servant shows up we would all be like “O, man,  we just harvested, like, a ton of grapes.  Here, Mr. servant of the landowner, we knew you would show up sooner or later so this is what we owe you.  We are super ecstatic to be handing over to you a portion of the goods we have labored for.  Now don’t come back too soon.  have a safe trip, jackass.”  That is probably close to how it would have occurred.  We weren’t happy about giving up a portion of what We earned, but We did it without a fight.

Now we will add in the watchtower.  As we are working, a man in the watchtower calls down to us “hey blokes!  there’s a dag nabbed outsider on his way here, get ready to fight!”  Now, when the servant arrives dodging stones thrown at him and such he throws his hands in the air saying “whoaaaaa now fellas, I’m no outsider, I represent the fella who owns this land and he wants his share of what is owed to him.”  let’s pause to realize that this is the moment in the story where God allows the devil to jump in there.  The Devil tells us that “we are ready to fight now, lets pound his head in and keep the grapes.   We earned them anyway, right?”  As women and men of Christ Jesus it is our job to rebuke this thought process saying: Christ, give me the grace to cast Satan out of this situation and give me the strength and wisdom to deal with this the way you would like for me to.  I, (insert our names here), submit myself to your will Jesus Christ.

This brings us to another lesson that can be found deep within the coral of this story.  (staying with the scuba diving theme … get it?)  The lesson is: change.  It simply is not easy for us to change.  It is also our job as men and women of Christ Jesus to know that we alone are not strong enough to recognize the stronghold of sin in our lives AND cast it out of us.  That is where faith falls into play.  If we believe in Jesus Christ who is the light, the way and the truth then we will be saved from our evil thoughts which turn into evil actions.  As a group we think to ourselves we are ready to fight let’s defend what we have worked for.  It takes a lot of spiritual momentum for a) this thought to never be spoken or humored, OR b) for us to humor the idea and then realize it is only going to lead to evil fruits in the future and suffering for Jesus therefore bringing us to change gears, humble ourselves and do what is best for everyone including us.

Extra Thoughts:

Let’s concentrate on that suffering for Jesus thing for a moment.  In the Old Testament in order to rid ourselves of sin in the way God wanted us to we would have to take the best of our flock and kill it.  And yet that would only remind us of our sin, not wash us of the guilt and shame of it.

All we had were flocks and a few other things.  Whats your favorite new thing?  Mine is a motorcycle.  If I knew that sinning would cause me to have to get rid of my motorcycle my life would be lived in such away that sin would be avoided long before I even got close to it.   Do you really believe in Jesus?  A good sign of whether or not you do would be if you feel like your putting your best friend under the chopping block every time you do something sinful.  I don’t know why the Father has encouraged sin in this world by making the crucifixion the new way for us to be relieved of sin properly, but the truth is that it seems it has to me.

Being saved is not one event.  It is like running a business.  or mastering a craft.  You must work at it day in and day out.  Believing is not a one and done thing.  It is an action that takes daily work.  We are created so that the mystery of who God is and how His son Jesus saves us does not come to us like an epiphany where we are like ohhhh now I get it.  That now I get it moment happens all the time but we are created in such a way to where we cant hold the epic severity and awesomeness of who God really is within our beings.  We just can’t.

So it goes like this.  Believe in Christ.  that is HUGE!!!!  to truly in your heart and mind be trying to believe.  That effort will lead Christ to do amazing and miraculous things for yourself and for others through you.  By trying to believe in Christ… you know what, hold the oranges, I cant explain this so I’m just going to go ahead and put the lesson on the table.  We are unable to change our personalities to suit Christs needs without putting forth a constant effort day in and day out towards believing in Him. You should be joyful knowing that when you say yes to the Holy Spirit God is well pleased with a member of His church.

Christ works in everyone in unique ways so that we feel like His special children.  And then we cry because we realize we aren’t worthy of his love and we feel filthy and holy and His righteousness pours in and all these good and bad emotions happen all at once and the tears come and they feel great.

We can know about who God really is in slivers of His truth at a time.  that little sliver of truth is what we hold onto and we try to be like that little sliver for the time that it is in us.  We change, grow and learn from that sliver and then another aha moment occurs and we are lead by that little sliver of the truth about God.  We have faith that God is teaching us what we need to know about Him so He can use us as a tool while changing us for that time and place.

We have faith, God, that You teach us about You and the timing of those lessons is perfect.  Folks, we will never receive those slivers day in and day out from 1 preacher, from 1 man(except Jesus), from 1 writer(except God), from 1 prophet, from 1 apostle, from 1 tv series, from 1 magazine.  We receive those slivers from ONE GOD and the most real thing we have and can all relate to that is solid here on earth is The Bible.  Read it once a week if not more.  Pray before you read and listen with a willingness to change YOURSELF while reading.  Believe in Our Savior Jesus Christ by reading all about Him and who He is in the Bible and the rest will be revealed.  If you, reader, are an avid prayer and Bible reader, please pray for me that I will never fall away from a schedule that puts God first.

With the Love of God in my heart (and a little pride too, sorry im only human)  I try my best to humbly say I believe in Jesus and I believe I have eternal life because an infinitesimal amount of the sin he took on Himself was mine.  I send that sin to the cross and am joyful in knowing that I deserve to be saved because I have free will and choose to believe!

I PRAISE JESUS!!  He is King of kings and Lord of lords.  Jesus We Love You!!!

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