The Landowner

I’ve worked most of my life in Real Estate.  I’m clear on what a “Landowner” is, both in practical terms … and in legal terms.

In the entire Bible, the word “Landowner” is only used four times.  All four times the word occurs in the telling of three parables.  Parables told by Jesus.  Found only in Matthew’s account.  All refer to His Father.

Our Father … if we desire Him.

Mat 13:27  A story of wheat and tares in the Father’s fields.  A picture of the Sheep and Goat Judgement.

Mat 20:1  A story of the payment to laborers (us) being equal no mater how long we work in the Father’s fields.  A picture of undeserved Grace.

Mat 21:33  A story of what we would do to the Landowner’s Slaves (Prophets), and His Son (Jesus).

33 “Listen to another parable. There was a landowner who PLANTED A VINEYARD AND PUT A WALL AROUND IT AND DUG A WINE PRESS IN IT, AND BUILT A TOWER, and rented it out to vine-growers and went on a journey. 34 “When the harvest time approached, he sent his slaves to the vine-growers to receive his produce. 35 “The vine-growers took his slaves and beat one, and killed another, and stoned a third. 36 “Again he sent another group of slaves larger than the first; and they did the same thing to them. 37 “But afterward he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ 38 “But when the vine-growers saw the son, they said among themselves, ‘This is the heir; come, let us kill him and seize his inheritance.’ 39 “They took him, and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. 40 “Therefore when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vine-growers?” 41 They said to Him, “He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, and will rent out the vineyard to other vine-growers who will pay him the proceeds at the proper seasons.” 42 Jesus *said to them, “Did you never read in the Scriptures, ‘THE STONE WHICH THE BUILDERS REJECTED, THIS BECAME THE CHIEF CORNER stone; THIS CAME ABOUT FROM THE LORD, AND IT IS MARVELOUS IN OUR EYES’? 43 “Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people, producing the fruit of it. 44 “And he who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; but on whomever it falls, it will scatter him like dust.” 45 When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard His parables, they understood that He was speaking about them. 46 When they sought to seize Him, they feared the people, because they considered Him to be a prophet.

The hearers of Jesus’ parable had the correct answer to His question: What will he (the Father) do to the vine-growers who killed His Son?  He will bring those wretches to a wretched end.

Indeed.  That is the logical answer.

But that’s not what the Angels looking on from Heaven witnessed at the Cross.  They’d been waiting about 4,000 years to see how the “mystery” of God would play out?  How would the Father “bring back to life” Adam and all his offspring?  How would the Father cause them to be “born again”?

At the cross, it all became tragically clear.  The Son would temporarily separate from the Father.  As a sinless entity outside of time, He would then take on the infinite sin debt of all mankind, (eternal separation from the Father).  The “death” that Adam underwent the moment he ate the forbidden fruit.  And He would bear that sin debt in a finite amount of time.  He would then step back into time and back into perfect fellowship with His Father.

A brilliant plan that could have only been accomplished by God Himself.

One that could have been pulled off moments after Adam ate?

Or perhaps if Israel and Judah had indeed repented, as the second temple was being dedicated?

Or perhaps as the people saw their King arriving on a donkey?

Or perhaps in the garden as the Son asked the Father if there was any other way?

But the Landowner shows us and perhaps even more importantly, the angels (fallen and righteous), that His love, His compassion, His patience, and His righteousness are beyond questioning.  The false accusation from the fallen Angels was at that moment adjudicated for all of eternity to witness.

Our response?

Kill the Landowner’s son.

And yet the Landowner failed to do what the hearers of Jesus’ parable said He should.

Instead, the Landowner granted a dying Son’s final request.

Father forgive them

And He did.

Perhaps He shouldn’t have?

But He did.

Then He gave “all things” and “all authority” to the Son.

Indeed.

I can only imagine how dumfounded the Angels were as they looked on?

Finally they had their answer.  The “mystery” was now revealed.

The Father is supremely righteous … and worthy of desiring.

For humans … and for Angels.

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