Faith Daily | 5 March 2021
PRAYER of the WEEK Lent Two
Remember, O Lord,
what you have wrought in us
and not what we deserve,
and, as you have called us to your service,
make us worthy of our calling;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen APBA p484
GOSPEL for the Day: Matthew 21 33:46
33“Listen to another parable. There was a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a fence around it, dug a wine press in it, and built a watchtower. Then he leased it to tenants and went to another country. 34When the harvest time had come, he sent his slaves to the tenants to collect his produce. 35But the tenants seized his slaves and beat one, killed another, and stoned another. 36Again he sent other slaves, more than the first; and they treated them in the same way. 37Finally he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ 38But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, ‘This is the heir; come, let us kill him and get his inheritance.” 39So they seized him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. 40Now when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?” 41They said to him, “He will put those wretches to a miserable death, and lease the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the produce at the harvest time.” 42Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the scriptures: ‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord’s doing, and it is amazing in our eyes’? 43Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people that produces the fruits of the kingdom. 44The one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; and it will crush anyone on whom it falls.” 45When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they realized that he was speaking about them. 46They wanted to arrest him, but they feared the crowds, because they regarded him as a prophet.
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by Ian McCarthy
The parable of the Wicked Tenants is a very good example of the way in which Jesus told short stories which make their intention or point of view, by using the circumstances and settings of daily life. Furthermore, it is quite evident to me that Jesus made extensive use of speaking to people in parables and that it was indeed one of His most preferred teaching styles.
Clearly the stories were drawn from everyday life events, the respective images and examples were understood by the recipients. However, I would suggest that possibly the outcome for some of the respective individuals was not always fully understanding the real message and some may even have been offended by Jesus’ intended message.
Finally, my personal understanding of this well- known parable illustrates that Jesus is conveying a very special story about events that will occur in the future.
In this particular parable of the wicked tenants we may assume that the vineyard owner is God, the tenants in question are the Jews, the servants described may refer to the prophets and the son is undoubtedly Jesus.
Also, reflecting on this particular parable I would suggest that we need to remember to view the allegory / parable in the context of the historical setting of the day. In short, Jesus was speaking to people involved in an agricultural society and it was important that simple everyday words were employed and that the correct meaning was understood by the people.
FINAL PRAYER: "Prayers of Life" by Michel Quoist. (Logos Books). Contributed by Ian.
If we knew how to listen to God, if we knew
how to look around us, our whole life would become prayer.
For it unfolds under God's eyes and no part of it must be
lived without being freely offered to him.
At first we communicate with God through words
which may be dispensed with later on.
Let us then make use of the following pages, but soon discard
words, as one does the peelings of a fruit.
Words are only a means.
However, the silent prayer which has moved
beyond words must always spring from everyday life.
for everyday life is the raw material of prayer.