Sermon Notes for PASSION SUNDAY 18 March 2018 Anno Domini

9 Then began he to speak to the people this parable; A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time. 10 And at the season he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard: but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty. 11 And again he sent another servant: and they beat him also, and entreated him shamefully, and sent him away empty. 12 And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out. 13 Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him. 14 But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours. 15 So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him. What therefore shall the lord of the vineyard do unto them? 16 He shall come and destroy these husbandmen, and shall give the vineyard to others. And when they heard it, they said, God forbid. 17 And he beheld them, and said, What is this then that is written, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner? 18 Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. 19 And the chief priests and the scribes the same hour sought to lay hands on him; and they feared the people: for they perceived that he had spoken this parable against them. (Luke 20:9-19)

The Lord often refers to His people as a Vineyard, or a Garden.

The Song of Solomon is full of illustrations of the relationship of Christ to His Bride, the Church: A garden inclosed is my sister, my spouse; a spring shut up, a fountain sealed. Thy plants are an orchard of pomegranates, with pleasant fruits; camphire, with spikenard, (Song 4:12-13)

God has made a fence around His people to keep the world from coming into it. Our behaviors and associations are hedged about so that we do not grow wild as the tares and briars of the field.

The parable today comes after Christ has vanquished the Sanhedrin in their attempt to undermine Him in the Temple when they demanded to know by what authority Jesus spoke these things. Jesus exposed their treachery and ignorance publicly.

Now He speaks to the people, but subtly to priest present as well.

He makes reference to a certain man… the Lord of Hosts.
9 Then began he to speak to the people this parable; A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time.
a certain man planted a vineyard;
the people of the Jews are identified by the vineyard
the “certain man” is the Lord of hosts;
the planting of it is His bringing and settling the people Israel in the land of Canaan.
Matthew, in the same account, adds: There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen (Matt 21:33)
He hedged it about to keep the world out (as in SS 4:12-13).
He digged a winepress in it – perhaps an allusion to His sacrifice in blood of purchasing His people out of their sins and bondage.
Built a Tower – set watchers over the people to warn them of thieves and unsavory types who would attempt to invade the garden.,
and let it forth to husbandmen; the husbandmen here referred to are thos rulers of Israel whose duty it was to preach and to teach, to counsel and to warn.
and went into a far country for a long time;
the time from the giving of the Law until Christ.
10 And at the season he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard: but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty. 11 And again he sent another servant: and they beat him also, and entreated him shamefully, and sent him away empty. 12 And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out.
God sent His prophets unto them. Their treatment of the prophets was a gradually escalating trend of cruelty and ill-treatment. Jeremiah was imprisoned, Isaiah was sawn asunder. Abel was murdered by his own brother, Cain. They laughed at Hosea and Noah.
13 Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him.
Finally, God determines it is time to send His Only Begotten Son. He did so wittingly, knowing that they would treat Him with harshness and even murder Him.
14 But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours. 15 So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him
This exposes the greed and jealousy of the Jewish leaders in wanting to destroy Christ. They knew full well that He was the Heir of the Father, yet they wanted no interference with their own power.
They had Christ beaten, taken outside the gates of the City – Via Dolorsa – and finally murdered Him.
What therefore shall the lord of the vineyard do unto them?

If you were a powerful King who sent His Son to claim the fruits of His own Garden, and the keepers murdered Him, what would YOU do?

16 He shall come and destroy these husbandmen, and shall give the vineyard to others
Christ would take the Kingdom from the Jews and give it to a nation bearing the fruits thereof. Remember His rebuke to the Jewish leaders? 42 Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes? 43 Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. (Matt 21:42-43)

And when they heard it, they said, God forbid It isa abundantly clear by their response that they Knew Christ spoke of them (the Jewish leaders).

17 And he beheld them, and said, What is this then that is written, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner? 18 Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.

The very cornerstone of the Great Pyramid at Giza lay half buried at its base and kept getting in the way of the workers. They often cursed the stone until, nearly completed with the pyramid, they discovered that this was the capstone. By that time, it was too late to erect it to the top of the structure. So the Great Pyramid remains unfinished without its capstone. Without Christ as the Chief Cornerstone of our Church, we are unfinished. In that day shall there be an altar to the LORD in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof to the LORD. 20 And it shall be for a sign and for a witness unto the LORD of hosts in the land of Egypt: for they shall cry unto the LORD because of the oppressors, and he shall send them a saviour, and a great one, and he shall deliver them. (Isaiah 19:19-20)

The Dollar Bill depicts that Chief Cornerstone above the pyramid on the National Seal.

19 And the chief priests and the scribes the same hour sought to lay hands on him; and they feared the people: for they perceived that he had spoken this parable against them

There is an old adage that says: If the shoe fits, wear it! The shoe did fit the Jewish leaders and they were incensed to the point of desiring to murder Christ on the spot – but they feared the people – they were political creatures and must consider how they would be viewed by the people. They would, rather, allow Rome to do their dirty deed of murder.

We are that Vineyard to which Christ refers. He has planted us, purchased us, and set watchers on the towers above us to keep us from error.

He has made a winepress, flowing with His own blood and sacrifice, in the midst of the Vineyard.

He has hedged us about to keep us separated from the world and its weeds of sin.

Have you heeded the watchman’s warning of the world of sin and filth?

Have you remained within the limits of behavior that God has set for you?

Have you drunk from the winepress of His Blood shed for you?

Are you eager for the return of the Owner and Heir of the Vineyard, or do you tremble to know that He is Coming to receive His own and to judge thoise who have not been faithful?

Decide today upon which side of the Line of Decision you shall stand when He returns.

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By |2018-03-19T18:34:16+00:00March 19th, 2018|Sermons|0 Comments

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