Luke 20:9. Then began he to speak to the people this parable, A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husband-men, and went into a far country for a long time.
It is a long time since Jesus left us, and he has not yet returned. Many say that he is coming back very soon; others say, “The Lord delay his coming.”
Luke 20:10-11. And at the season he sent a servant to the husband-men, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard but the husband-men beat him, and sent him away empty. And again he sent another servant: and they beat him also, and entreated him shamefully, and sent him away empty.
They grow bolder, and more wicked, you see; first beating, and then adding shameful treatment to their former cruelty. Men do not come to ridicule religion, and persecute its advocates, all at once; this is an art which Satan teaches by degrees.
Luke 20:12. And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out.
They are more violent this time; it comes to actual wounding, and to casting out the servant.
Luke 20:13. Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do?
A strange thing happens when the Lord himself comes to pass, and says, “What shall I do?” Here is infinite wisdom, as it were, at a non-plus; and in that extremity this is the Lord’s last expedient: —
Luke 20:13-15. I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him. But when the husband-men saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours. So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him.
You know the story how this beloved Son of the Highest was all love and pity; and yet, with cruel hands, men cast him out of God’s ancient vineyard, and crucified him, hoping that they should be allowed to remain lords of God’s heritage.
Luke 20:15. What therefore shall the lord of the vineyard do unto them?
What punishment can be sufficient to expiate such a crime? What vengeance will be poured out upon those who have killed him who came to do them good?
Luke 20:16. He shall come and destroy these husband-men, and shall give the vineyard to others.
And he did so; he scattered abroad the Jews, and gave the kingdom, for a while at least, unto the Gentiles, and they hear the gospel which the Jesus refused.
Luke 20:16. And when they heard it, they said, God forbid.
That is exactly what you and I would say, for we, too, have ill-treated the blessed Lord of the vineyard and his beloved Son. Lest we should have the heritage taken from us, let us yield up the fruit to him who has the best right to it all.