Matthew 21:33-46| The Parable of the Wicked Tenants
‘Listen to another parable. There was a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a fence around it, dug a wine press in it, and built a watch-tower. Then he leased it to tenants and went to another country. When the harvest time had come, he sent his slaves to the tenants to collect his produce. But the tenants seized his slaves and beat one, killed another, and stoned another. Again he sent other slaves, more than the first; and they treated them in the same way. Finally he sent his son to them, saying, “They will respect my son.” But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, “This is the heir; come, let us kill him and get his inheritance.” So they seized him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. Now when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?’ They said to him, ‘He will put those wretches to a miserable death, and lease the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the produce at the harvest time.’
Jesus said to them, ‘Have you never read in the scriptures:
“The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone;
this was the Lord’s doing,
and it is amazing in our eyes”?
Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people that produces the fruits of the kingdom. The one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; and it will crush anyone on whom it falls.’
When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they realized that he was speaking about them. They wanted to arrest him, but they feared the crowds, because they regarded him as a prophet.
I don’t know what it will take to put an end to this senseless violence in our world today. But what I do know is that I will continue to “press on to make it my goal,” to put an end to it. I can only do my little bit of good in my part of the world. So here is what I promise to you St. Mark’s – I will continue to press on in making a place where we teach our kids about loving one another. I will continue to press on towards making a community that is grounded on grace and forgiveness. I will continue to press on towards teaching confirmation and affirming the firm foundation in Christ Jesus our Lord for our confirmation students. I will continue to press on towards the goal of creating worship and space for us to hold these difficult days.