The Parable of the Wicked Tenants

Matthew 21:33-46, Mark 12:1-12, and Luke 20:9-19

Hear a parable! The Lord created a vineyard.
No other estate in the realm was quite so grand.
He planted a thorny hedge on the outer edge
To keep the thieves and animals from breaking in.
He built the perfect winepress for the grapes.
He raised a tower to house the vineyard tenants.

Before he leased the land, the Lord commanded
That the tenants care for the land and pay their rent.
He then withdrew to live in a distant land.
At harvest time, the Lord dispatched a messenger
To ask the tenants to pay the Lord a share
Of the produce. The messenger was beaten and sent away.

The patient Lord sent more messengers,
One after the other, to collect the promised rent.
But the result was always the same—all the messengers
Were beaten, stoned, or killed by the wicked tenants.
Finally, the Lord decided to send his son.
The Lord declared, “The tenants will respect my son.”

Instead, the wicked tenants seized the son.
They murdered the son and cast him out of the vineyard.
By this they hoped to gain the son’s inheritance.
The Lord was furious the tenants killed his son.
His patience spent, he vowed to purge the vineyard.
He expelled the tenants and gave the vineyard to others.

It was Jesus himself who said: Hear a parable!
The chief priests and the elders of the people knew
Exactly who the wicked tenants were.
They knew the messengers represented the prophets.
They knew what Jesus meant when he quoted the psalm,
The stone the builders rejected became the cornerstone.


Copyright © 2017 David DeForest Baldwin – All rights reserved.

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