Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: A sermon for the 19th Sunday after Pentecost Proper 21 Two sons in the field

19th Sunday after Pentecost

Proper 21

Matthew. 21:23-32

"What kind of Sinner are You?

"And when he entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came up to him as he was teaching, and said, "By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?" Jesus answered them, "I also will ask you a question; and if you tell me the answer, then I also will tell you by what authority I do these things. The baptism of John, whence was it? From heaven or from men?" And they argued with one another, "If we say, ’From heaven,’ he will say to us, ’Why then did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ’From men,’ we are afraid of the multitude; for all hold that John was a prophet." So they answered Jesus, "We do not know." And he said to them, "Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things. "What do you think? A man had two sons; and he went to the first and said, ’Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’ And he answered, ’I will not’; but afterward he repented and went. And he went to the second and said the same; and he answered, ’I go, sir,’ but did not go. Which of the two did the will of his father?" They said, "The first." Jesus said to them, "Truly, I say to you, the tax collectors and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you. For John came to you in the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the harlots believed him; and even when you saw it, you did not afterward repent and believe him." Matthew 21:23-32, RSV.

Grace and peace to you from our Lord and Saviour, Jesus who is the Christ. Amen

Jesus is asking us a question this morning, He says, "What do you do think? He is asking us to listen to this parable this morning and come to some conclusion about it.

Jesus is telling us a parable about two sinners, not one person who is good and another who is awful, but two people who are sinners, who are equally guilty in God’s eyes.

Jesus says, the first son is asked by his father to go into the fields and work, but says he will not go, but then changes his mind and goes into the field and does an honest days work.

Jesus goes on to says that this man had a second son who had been asked to go into the field says he will with respect for the father, but he never goes to the field.

Jesus then asks which one of these two did the will of the father, and we can answer the first one. He at first he said no, but later changed his mind and went to work. The second one, was very respectable to his father, he had good intentions, but he never got to the field.

What do you think Jesus was trying to tell us in this parable?? What is he trying to say?

What do you think???

Jesus is trying to show us that the kingdom of heaven is made up of two kinds of sinners. One who knows he or she has done wrong and repents, or turns around from their sin, and the other who does not believe they are sinners, they have good intention, but never really fulfill the demands of God in their lives.

Jesus was addressing this parable to the religious leaders of his day. They thought they had cornered the market on the grace of God. They felt because they had kept all the letters of the law, because they were on the outside very religious, they would be the only ones to gain God’s favor.

They could have never thought that those people who did the awful things, like tax collectors, harlots, non Jews, adulteress, could never gain God’s favor. But Jesus was trying to show them, that the others would gain God’s favor because they knew of their sinfulness and repented, they changed their lives, and were ready to do the will of the father.

The other son never felt like he had done anything wrong. He had been respectful to his father, had told him he would go to the field, but didn’t. Jesus was trying to show the people, that one group would be with the Father, and the other would not because of the kind of sinner he was.

Jesus is talking to two different kinds of sinners. He is not talking about one good person and one bad person, He is talking about two kinds of sinners, those who know who they are and need repentance, and those who think they are okay in and of themselves.

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