A Stone of Stumbling and a Rock of Offense

“Hear another parable: There was a certain landowner who planted a vineyard and set a hedge around it, dug a winepress in it and built a tower. And he leased it to vinedressers and went to a far country. Now when vintage-time drew near, he sent his servants to the vinedressers, that they might receive its fruit. And the vinedressers took his servants, beat one, killed one, and stoned another. Again he sent other servants, more than the first, and they did likewise to them. Then last of all he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ But when the vinedressers saw the son, they said among themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him and seize his inheritance.’ So they took him and cast him out of the vineyard and killed him. “Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vinedressers?” They said to Him, “He will destroy those wicked men miserably, and lease his vineyard to other vinedressers who will render the fruits in their seasons.” Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in Scriptures: ‘The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone. This was the Lord’s doing, And it is marvelous in our eyes’? “Therefore, I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a nation bearing the fruits of it. And whoever falls on this stone will be broken; but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder.” Now when the chief priests and Pharisees heard His parables, they perceived that He was speaking of them. But when they sought to lay hands on Him, they feared the multitudes, because they took Him for a prophet.  Matthew 21:33-46

Okay everyone reading this, take a deep breath in and exhale. Thank you for reading this rather longer than usual text, but it all flows with what the Lord wants to share with us. You see, God does choose whomever He desires to serve Him and glorify Him in this life. But if we are not willing, if we refuse to believe in the prophecies concerning Him, hanging on to traditions and religious rituals will be no substitute when it comes to serving Christ. Let’s take a look. Jesus was clearly referring to an Old Testament passage by the prophet Isaiah, chapter 5, which would have been familiar to the Jewish leaders. The “vineyard” is a common symbol for the nation of Israel. The minute He announces this vineyard, which was hedged and the winepress and all, this was exactly how Isaiah described the nation of Israel. How God planted the vineyard, and He came to gather the fruit, and all there was, was wild grapes. The owner made every conceivable provision for the vine’s productivity and protection, illustrating the Lord’s purely gracious choice of Israel. And justifiably, He expected a good yield of fruit from His investment. And so He just let the vineyard go into captivity. And they knew that this vineyard was representative of the nation Israel.

Now God did not act without warning. We see from the parable Jesus tells, that the landowner sent servants to the field. These represent all of the prophets God raised up to tell of their coming Messiah, and that Israel as a whole ought to have heeded these men God sent them because these were His messengers, to warn them that they ought to repent. So here we read, after their response to Jesus’ question; when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vinedressers? These chief priests and synagogue rulers again trap themselves in their challenging of Jesus’ authority. The son in the parable represents the Lord Jesus Christ, whom they killed by condemning Him to the cross. They pronounced their own judgment upon themselves. The kingdom of Christ, and all of their spiritual advantages would be taken away from them and given to those who would be willing and humble enough to accept them by faith and believe in the redemption offering of Jesus Christ for their sins. The “other vinedressers” symbolizes the church, which consists primarily of Gentiles, Paul wrote in Romans: “salvation has come to the Gentiles” something that the Old Testament had long prophesied when God told Abram: “And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” which was explained that this was all in the sovereign plan of God.

The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone—Jesus took them back to the Messianic Hallel psalms sung at the time of Passover in which also in the New Testament, Peter wrote: “Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious, and he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame,”Therefore, to you who believe, He is precious; but to those who are disobedient, “The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone,” and “A stone of stumbling And a rock of offense”(1 Peter 2:6-8). The metaphor “Stone”  Peter used to show that Christ’s position is that of Chief Cornerstone of the New Testament church, foreordained  by God Himself. To every human being, Jesus Christ is either the means of salvation if they believe in Him, or the means of judgment if they reject Him in the message of the gospel. There is no other name by which we must be saved by, and no other foundation upon which we can build upon then of that which the Word of God says is Jesus Christ.

Beloved friend, “Whomever falls on this stone will be broken; but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder.”  To become a Christian is to fall upon the mercy of God, and be broken of our sin-laden life. We have no hope beyond this life whatsoever without Jesus Christ, He is our Rock of salvation. The spiritual blessings forfeited by Israel as a nation by refusing to believe in Jesus Christ as their promised Messiah are many; one of them being able to bless your families with the wisdom and knowledge of God the Father, through worshiping and obeying His Son, Jesus Christ. Our families are given a great legacy to follow after Christ by faithful godly parents. Children need their Christian role models to be in their home life as they are being raised. Mom’s and dad’s shape their spiritual destiny by introducing them at an early age to their God. Let us never forsake this given privilege given to us by God.

“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit (John 15:1-2). The picture of the vinedresser God the Father, getting rid of dead branches so that the living ones, fruit bearing branches may be sharply distinguished. This is a picture of the apostate Christians who never genuinely believed and will be taken away in judgment. Jesus also said earlier in His ministry, “You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thorn bushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them.”(Matthew 7:16-20) Living falsely will have its consequences. Don’t get caught up in any new age beliefs that are currently popular among mankind, these false seeking messages and methods of finding peace, through channeling and becoming one with mother earth will not fare well in the end. God is seeking those who will bear witness to the truth of His Word. And through the believing in His Word can you find the only hope, the only life filled with His peace, and the assurance of your salvation.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, You are what I need in the Person of Jesus Christ. I want to follow You and receive Your offer of forgiveness of my sins, and live a life that bears the good fruit described in Your written Word. Lord, fill me with the Love, Joy, Peace, Longsuffering, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control, that are all characteristics of Jesus Christ, Your Son. Thank You Father, that you hear and answer this prayer, In Jesus name, amen.

May the Lord bless your walk with Him today!






Author: rontrujillo

Married 37 years We have six children. All of whom are adult. Three are married one of them blessed us with three beautiful grandchildren. Retired Firefighter @ Boeing Aircraft 37 years (Formally McDonnell Douglas) Born Again Summer of 1981

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