Summary: His name is…The stone. (Powerpoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
• 2nd of 3 parables
• time of Confrontation
• issue of authority
• the stone rejected
• the stone which crushes
Sleeping Beauty, Tom Thumb, and Quasimodo were all talking one day.
• Sleeping Beauty said,
• "I believe myself to be the most beautiful girl in the world."
• Tom Thumb said,
• "I must be the smallest person in the world."
• Quasimodo said,
• "I absolutely have to be the ugliest person in the world."
So they all decided to go to the Guinness Book of World Records to have their claims verified.
• Sleeping Beauty went in first and came out looking deliriously happy.
• "It's official, I AM the most beautiful girl in the world."
• Tom Thumb went next and emerged triumphant,
• "I am now officially the smallest person in the world."
• Sometime later, Quasimodo comes out looking utterly confused and says.
• "Who is Martin Fielder?” [Replace with some other person in the fellowship]
• Now that has nothing to do with my message;
• But I thought you might enjoy the story!
• When it comes to sleep have you ever considered how desperate Jacob must have been;
• In the Old Testament (Genesis chapter 28 verse 17)
• To choose a large stone, a rock for a pillow?
• A rock is hardly a comfortable place to sit on for a long time,
• Let alone to sleep on all night.
Note: there is a big difference between comfortable and comforting.
• A rock is a secure place on which to build.
• ill: Wise & foolish builders (Matthew chapter 7 verse 24).
• Unlike the house built on shifting sand,
• The house built on the rock withstood the ravages of rain and flood.
• ill: You remember David’s great Psalm (No 40);
• A rock is a safe place on which to stand;
• After one has been slipping and sliding about in quicksand.
• A large rock is secure, fixed, and unmovable.
• It represents constancy and permanence,
• something to which to grab hold of when everything else about us seems to be changing.
• ill: You all know the classic hymn ‘Rock of ages cleft for me”.
• Augustus Toplady discovered that a rock can be a shelter under which to take refuge.
• Augustus Toplady lived in England in the 1700’s.
• In 1776 he was walking through a gorge of Burrington Combe,
• A Mendip gorge close to Cheddar Gorge in England.
• When suddenly a terrifying storm swept down out of the sky.
• He was far away from the nearest village and he had no shelter,
• As he looked around for somewhere to hide,
• He saw a large rock ahead of him and thought that,
• If he leaned against it, he might escape some of the storms violence.
When he got to the rock he saw that it had been split open.
• And there was a crack into which he could fit
• He went in and was sheltered from the storm.
• While he was hiding inside the rock,
• He thought about God’s coming judgement;
• And of the fact that Jesus the Rock of Ages was broken by God;
• So that sinners like ourselves, might choose to hide in him and be safe.
• Struck by this thought,
• He found a playing card that had been lying at his feet and wrote this hymn on the card;
• “Rock of ages, cleft for me, let me hide myself in thee”.
One of the names and tiles of Jesus Christ is the Rock, or the Stone:
• Our passage is Matthew chapter 21 verses 33 to 50;
• The parable of the Tenants/Vineyard.
• A parable that in many ways is self-explanatory.
• This parable appears in three of the gospels;
• With Matthew’s account being the fullest version.
Notice the context:
• This parable is the middle one of three stories that Jesus told;
• The first being ‘The parable of the two sons’.
• The third being ‘The parable of the wedding banquet’.
• Jesus spoke them as a result of being confronted by the religious leaders:
• Verse 21: Jesus goes to the temple courts to teach.
• Verse 23: The chief priest and elders confront Him,
• They want to know by what authority He is teaching.
• To the religious leaders Jesus is a self-imposed Rabbi;
• He has not trained in the religious leaders universities and schools.
• Therefore he does not fit the mould or say the right things.
• Notice that Jesus does not allow these religious leaders to control the conversation,