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The Parable about
the Two Sons

Matthew 21:28-32

Service Notes

MATTHEW 21:28-32
    Jesus went to the Temple, and He taught the people.
    The chief priests and the ELDERS came to Him. They asked, “What is your authority for teaching here? Who gave you permission?"
    Jesus answered, “Before I answer, I will ask-you. If you answer me, then I will tell you my authority for teaching here.  Tell me: When John baptized people, did that come from God or only from other people?” 
    The priests privately discussed about Jesus’ question. “If we answer, ‘John’s baptism was from God,’ Jesus will ask why we didn't believe John.  But we can't say that John's baptism was from people, because we are afraid of what the crowd will do. They all believe that John was a prophet.”
    So they answered, “We don’t know.”
    Jesus told them, “Fine. I won’t tell you my authority for teaching here.
    What do you think about this story?
    A farmer had two sons.  The father went to the first son and said, 'Son, go and work in the vineyard today.'
    The boy answered, 'No! I don't-want to work.'  But later the son changed his mind and he went to work.
    The father went to his other son and told him the same:  'Son, go and work in the vineyard today.' 
    The second son answered, 'Yes, Father. I will go work.'  But the son didn't go."
    Jesus asked: "Which son obeyed the father?" 
    They answered, "The first son." 
    Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, tax collectors and prostitutes will enter God's kingdom before you.  Because JOHN the Baptizer told you how to become saved, and you didn't believe him; but the tax collectors and prostitutes believed him.  No-matter that you saw that happen, you won't repent, you won't believe."

 
The Father =   

The 1st Son =  


The 2nd Son =   


Application =  


[We did this lesson on Reformation Sunday.]

The Parable of the Two Sons...
    a simple story that has a clear meaning.

[Summarize the story]
A farmer had two sons.  The father went to the first son and said, 'Son, go and work in the vineyard today.'
The boy answered, 'No! I don't-want to work.'  But later the son changed his mind and he went to work.
The father went to his other son and told him the same:  'Son, go and work in the vineyard today.' 
The second son answered, 'Yes, Father. I will go work.'  But the son didn't go."

The Father = ?     ...God

The 1st Son = ?   ...sinners that repent.

The 2nd Son = ?  ...sinners who cover-up their sin with religion.
                -- two-faced religious hypocrites.

Both sons are sinners.
    #1 admit it.
    #2 deny it.

Notice that the Father invites both sons to work in Vineyard,
the same as God invites ALL people to His mercy.

 
Notice why Jesus told this story:
The priests criticize Jesus.  Why?
    They feel jealous about all the attention Jesus gets.
    They feel disgusted that
        Jesus is so popular with the common people.
    They feel annoyed that Jesus doesn't follow their rules.
        He doesn't follow their traditions.

The priests should be FIRST IN LINE to trust Jesus.
They have the whole Old Testament that prophesies His coming.
Many times through Israel's history
    God show His mercy
    and promises our Savior.

Now, Here He is!

The priests don't-know what the Old Testament says?
    No, not really.

They know the OT stories and laws.
The know lots of OT verses.
But they overlook God's heart that the OT shows.

So when their Messiah comes, they reject Him.
And the people who already rejected God's law in their lives,
    they rush to Jesus.

Why?
    Because in Jesus they see mercy and love.
    They see hope.
    They see forgiveness.
    They see real power for change in their lives.
    They see God!

Their priests only offer them rules, laws, and judgment.
 
Now jump ahead in time, 1,500 years.

What happened in this story,
    happened again,
not in Israel,
    but in Europe,
        Italy, Germany, Spain, and France.

And the problem was not in the temple,
    but in the church.

Christian Clergy and Church leaders fell into the same mistake that the priests in Jesus' time did.

God's love and mercy became replace
    with laws and traditions.
Religious leaders forgot God's heart.
They ignored the Bible.

They were like son #2 in our story.
    They said that they loved God and obeyed Him.
    But.... did they really?  by selling forgiveness for money!?

But we also see there son #1,
    sinners who saw in the Bible
        a sweet wonderful message about forgiveness,
they upset everything by announcing that message
    in the church
    and to the world.
Repenting sinners, like Martin Luther,
    John Calvin,
    and many other Reformers.

[Interesting:
    the Signs for REPENT and REFORMATION are alike.]
 
Now again jump ahead in time, 500 more years
    to NOW,
    October 30, 2011.

We still have the same story,
    the same two sons,

#1 - Sinners, hungry to know Jesus,
    hungry for receiving forgiveness,
    hungry for God's power for their lives to change.

and
#2 - Religious people who know all the right words.
    They dress nice.
    They know the right behavior
        when other people are watching.

Question:
    Which of these two sons are we?


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