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The Parables #62

The Parable of the two sons – Part 12  

Matthew 21:28-32

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The Saviour’s application of the parable

“Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you. For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.” verses 31 & 32.

We are coming to the end of our study of this wonderful parable, which is providential since I go over to England next week to fulfil some preaching engagements. I would not have liked to have had to leave you with our study unfinished.

Let us look at the two verses we read.

1. How quickly the Jewish leaders gave the right answer. (See V 23) Men have a knowledge of what is right and wrong. These men had heard God’s Word. “For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not,” verse 32. However, they don’t act according to what they know!
The Saviour was here talking to “the chief priests and the elders of the people,” Matt 21:23.

2. This they did because these men knew the truth. “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat: All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not,” Matthew 23:1-3.

3. Furthermore, they had the example of others obeying the gospel. “For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him,” Matthew 21:32. They had the further encouragement of seeing others coming forward in faith but they rejected the Word of God and refused the example of those around who repented.

Boys and girls give heed to God’s Word and to the good example of those around you who receive the Lord Jesus.

The Parables #61

The Parable of the two sons – Part 11  

Scripture: Matthew 21:28-32

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We will consider a little further the decisions made by these sons.

The second son. He was like the seed in stony ground: “But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended,” Matthew 13:20-21.

The decision he made was a not a fixed, settled decision. There was no root to the decision. It did not run down deep into his heart! He was not like David. “O God, my heart is fixed; I will sing and give praise, even with my glory,” Psalm 108:1.

I wonder what made him change his mind – the voice of friends calling him away? Note, “when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word.” ‘Tribulation’, ‘Persecution’. The Word of God brings such troubles as these. “And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles,” Acts 8:1. Only those truly rooted in Christ can withstand such. “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,” Ephesians 3:17.
The first son. He realised the sinfulness of his decision. Lack of gratitude, offensive and shameful, vexing to God.  Doubtless, as an Israelite he would have been familiar with Deut 21:18-21.  “If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, and that, when they have chastened him, will not hearken unto them: Then shall his father and his mother lay hold on him, and bring him out unto the elders of his city, and unto the gate of his place; And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard. And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die: so shalt thou put evil away from among you; and all Israel shall hear, and fear.” He turned in repentance.
Refusing to obey your earthly father is most serious. How much more your Creator!
Defying of the voice of God can only end in death. “Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death,” James 1:15. That is the penalty of sin

“But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death,” Revelation 21:8. The second son was a LIAR!
Please take heed to this matter today, boys and girls.

The Parables #60

The Parable of the two sons – Part 10  

Matthew 21:28-32

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We have noted that both of the sons refused to serve their father. It is an underlining of the sinfulness and rebellion of all of humanity.
Now please note the important difference in the attitudes of the two sons.

1. One son sought to conceal his disobedience. “And he answered and said, I go, sir: and went not,” verse 30. He knew what he should do but only pretended to do it! He thought nothing of deceiving his father.
How many there are like that? They have a mere pretended ‘religion’! A sham ‘obedience’ of God commands! Their whole behaviour is a lie!

2. The other son was openly defiant but repented. “He answered and said, I will not: but afterward he repented, and went,” verse 29.
It is possible to change your ways.
First word Christ used as a preacher. “From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand,” Matthew 4:17.
It is not how you start but how you end that counts.

The Parables #59

The Parable of the two sons – Part 9  

Matthew 21:28-32

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We must now think of the response of the two sons.

1. Both sons showed a rebellious spirit. Verse 29, “I will not.” Verse 30, “and went not.” Both of them were rebellious in heart.
Cared not about PLEASING  their father nor PARTAKING of the fruit nor in PROMOTING the wellbeing of the vineyard..

So it is with us all. “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips,” Romans 3:10-13.

The Parables #58

The Parable of the two sons – Part 8  

(Matthew 21:28-32)

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The eternal rewards (Continued)

We have been looking at the joys we received and enjoy while working for the Lord and also those that awaits us in heaven. God pays double wages! Please quickly consider:


IN OUR AFFLICTIONS: “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory,” 2 Cor 4:17.

IN OUR SUFFERING: “But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy,” 1 Peter 4:13.

IN OUR FAINTING: “Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,” Jude 1:24.
Amongst the every last words the Saviour uttered to His Church, we find these: “And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be,” Revelation 22:12.

Heaven is a glorious land of in which we will spend eternity ENJOYING the rewards of labouring for the Saviour in His Vineyard!
“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord,” 1 Cor 15:58. What a glorious reward awaits the faithful labourers! “Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world,” Matthew 25:34.

We will return to the main text of the parable next assembly and consider the responses of the two sons and how, though they appear very different, they are the same at the first!