Hello everyone! We are at part 5 of this Lent series Keep Your Eyes On Jesus already, praise God! Here are the links to the last four:
Part 1. wheat & tares
Part 2. mustard seed
Part 3. the joy of relationship
Part 4. to be loved the same
Today, I want to talk about the parable of the wicked vinedressers from Luke 20:9-19 (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. 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. Again he sent another servant; and they beat him also, treated him shamefully, and sent him away empty-handed. And again he sent a third; and they wounded him also and cast him out.
“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.’ 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.’ So they cast him out of the vineyard and killed him. Therefore what will the owner of the vineyard do to them? He will come and destroy those vinedressers and give the vineyard to others.”
And when they heard it they said, “Certainly not!”
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’?
Whoever falls on that stone will be broken; but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder.”
And the chief priests and the scribes that very hour sought to lay hands on Him, but they feared the people—for they knew He had spoken this parable against them.
What comes to your mind when you read this Scripture? Maybe you get the feeling that it is Jesus vs. the bad guys (aka. “pharisees”) and this Word does not apply to you? I am smirking here because the Holy Spirit led me to this parable and I know the Lord wants to speak to me about honoring Jesus.
Let us look at the vinedressers first! We know that the owner of the vineyard is God, the Father, and that His Son is Jesus. The vinedressers are those He entrusted His Word with, the people of God. The servants are the prophets whom God kept sending to His people who were mistreated and murdered by the same. Jesus is warning here that the Israelites will reject Jesus and crucify Him, and that the vineyard will be given over to His believers who receive and honor Him, no matter if they are Jew or Gentile.
See, His Word is active and alive and we serve a living God. This Word still applies to us, His vinedressers! You, if you are a follower of Christ, have been entrusted by God with the Holy Spirit (His own very presence in you) to bear fruits which please Him. You have been given certain gifts of the Spirit to serve the Body of Christ (please check out this list and pray over it, asking the Lord what your gifts are). Jesus is coming back and even before that, all throughout your life, the owner of the vineyard will come and check how you are doing and if you are producing any good fruit. And if you are, He will make sure you get all the nourishment you need to keep growing (John 15:2).
How do you feel about this? Uncomfortable? Are you in this competitive, all-about-success mindset of this current generation again and feel like shutting down? Believe me, I have been there. God had to renew my mind completely in my twenties to get me out of the bondage of fear of never being enough. If this is the case for you, please go ahead and read the parable of the barren fig tree in Luke 13:6-9, it is just four verses. Choose whatever version you like and sit with it before the Lord until you feel safe in His presence. He loves you and adores you! He cherishes you and takes good care of you! He is your good shepherd, and He will not give up on you – ever. Sit there with Him until you have received His love by faith and then come back.
So, assuming you have done that, I want you to focus on where you might be rejecting Jesus right now and refusing to render to God what He rightfully deserves. Where does that “shrinking back, away from God” (Hebrews 10:39) come from? Hebrews tells us it is due to a lack of faith; and we cannot believe what we have not heard. Let me ask you this: do you actually know Jesus? He is the Word, the entire Bible.
For those of you who want to dive in more into Scripture right now, I encourage you to go to 1. Peter 1 and read the whole chapter out loud. The power of the knowledge that Peter had of Jesus (out of revelation from Heaven) was to a measure that it changed the entire world! It was never the same again. So it is with your life. The revelation that Jesus is the Son of God delivers and heals. There is no other name by which your life can be changed! 1. Peter tells us that when we truly know Him, we rest assured in the living hope of Jesus and live holy lives, just as He is holy. I rest assured that whatever unbelief is holding me back right now from bearing more fruits, it will be cast down in the mighty name of Jesus as I receive Him and honor Him as He is. I pray that as you read this, the Holy Spirit will reveal the Son of God to you and cast down your unbelief with the might of angel armies, driving out the darkness in you with the light of Jesus Christ. Oh come, Holy Spirit! We shall be holy as He is holy! In Jesus’ name, Amen!