Parable of the Vine-growers
9 And He began to tell the people this parable: “A man planted a vineyard and rented it out to vine-growers, and went on a journey for a long time. 10 At the harvest time he sent a slave to the vine-growers, so that they would give him some of the produce of the vineyard; but the vine-growers beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 11 And he proceeded to send another slave; and they beat him also and treated him shamefully and sent him away empty-handed. 12 And he proceeded to send a third; and this one also they wounded and cast out. 13 The owner of the vineyard said, ‘What shall I do? I will send my beloved son; perhaps they will respect him.’ 14 But when the vine-growers saw him, they reasoned with one another, saying, ‘This is the heir; let us kill him so that the inheritance will be ours.’ 15 So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. What, then, will the owner of the vineyard do to them? 16 He will come and destroy these vine-growers and will give the vineyard to others.” When they heard it, they said, “May it never be!” 17 But Jesus looked at them and said, “What then is this that is written:
‘The stone which the builders rejected,
This became the chief corner stone’?
18 Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces; but on whomever it falls, it will scatter him like dust.”
The following excerpt from Mark Driscoll's sermon, The Father of a Murdered Son, talks about something I have worked on in the past, continue to work on, and will need to keep trying to remember for the rest of my life, because I know how easy it is to lose sight of and forget.
Anything you want to be or do all starts with Jesus. Don’t let him be the rejected stone. And this is really the problem that some of you, quite frankly, are having practically with your life. You built your life, forgot Jesus and now you’re trying to find a way to slip him in. It doesn’t work like that.
Some of you need to really honestly consider dismantling much, if not all, of your whole life. Say, “You know what? I’m trying to squeeze Jesus into my time, into my budget, into my life. Rather than squeezing him in, what if he went first? What if my first priority was get to know Jesus? What if my first priority was devotion to Jesus and what if I built my budget off of that? And my schedule off of that? And my career off of that? And my relationships off of that? And my marriage off of that? And children, if God should bless me with them, off of that? And grandkids off of that? And my life off of that? And my ministry off of that? And my death off of that?”
What if we started with Jesus? Some of you really need to consider what does it look like to just disassemble it all and start over with Jesus first. ‘Cause the point is this, it’s just like when you construct a building, a bad foundation means eventually it leans and then it collapses. You get the wrong cornerstone, it can’t hold the weight, the angles get crooked and the architectural metaphor is it’s only a matter of time before it crumbles. And life is like that.
God loves you and God wants your life to be fruitful back to the original analogy. He wants it to grow, and he wants it to be one that works for you to live in to honor him. And you can’t build a life where Jesus is not in your life or just a part of your life. He has to be the cornerstone of your life. And Jesus says, “If you don’t see me as cornerstone and you don’t build your life on me,” he said, “then I become a different kind of rock to you. I become the kind of rock that falls on you and crushes you.”
Tomorrow's scripture focus: Luke 20:19-26.