Posted by: biblestudyseattle | October 18, 2016

Absent Parents

Since the Fall, mankind has been like kids in a house with the parents gone.  Jesus illustrated this in a parable:

“Now listen to another story. A certain landowner planted a vineyard, built a wall around it, dug a pit for pressing out the grape juice, and built a lookout tower. Then he leased the vineyard to tenant farmers and moved to another country.  At the time of the grape harvest, he sent his servants to collect his share of the crop.  But the farmers grabbed his servants, beat one, killed one, and stoned another.  So the landowner sent a larger group of his servants to collect for him, but the results were the same.  “Finally, the owner sent his son, thinking, ‘Surely they will respect my son.’“But when the tenant farmers saw his son coming, they said to one another, ‘Here comes the heir to this estate. Come on, let’s kill him and get the estate for ourselves!’   So they grabbed him, dragged him out of the vineyard, and murdered him.  “When the owner of the vineyard returns,” Jesus asked, “what do you think he will do to those farmers?”  Matthew 21:33-40

The landowner is none other than YHWH!  He is the parent who sent his son to manage things in his absence.  Jesus commands all people, especially believers, to forgive and repent.  But some fear repentance lest the abused return malice instead of forgiveness.  This was the thinking of Joseph’s brothers:

“But now that their father was dead, Joseph’s brothers became fearful. “Now Joseph will show his anger and pay us back for all the wrong we did to him,” they said.”  Genesis 50:15

But if we are insulted upon repentance, it is the malicious ones who are now accountable.  When YHWH returns, we will have the constant advice of a nearby parent:

Though the Lord gave you adversity for food
    and suffering for drink,
he will still be with you to teach you.
    You will see your teacher with your own eyes.
Your own ears will hear him.
    Right behind you a voice will say,
“This is the way you should go,”
    whether to the right or to the left.”  Isaiah 30:20-21

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