Today we start a new series of preaching and study. We are going to spend the next several weeks looking at seven parables that Jesus used to teach about God’s kingdom. The series is simply titled ‘Parables of the Kingdom’. We will use Matthew’s account of the parables to guide us in becoming better equipped to be citizens of God’s kingdom. It is important for us to gain a clear understanding of what God’s kingdom looks like and who may be its citizens.
Many of Jesus’ parables are very clear in their teaching. Jesus uses everyday language and pictures to explain exactly what God’s kingdom is like and who may enter. Sometimes His teaching is hard hitting as He sought to persuade men in high places of their naivety when it came to understanding God’s ways. In this first parable under the microscope today, we find Jesus in the temple courts. He is being questioned by the chief priests and elders. I am sure that it was very tense. Crowds of people had gathered to listen to Jesus. The chief priests and elders were concerned that the people may side with Jesus. They therefore asked Him where He gained His authority to teach the way He did.
The parable of the two sons is a very telling one indeed. It is aimed at showing the Jewish leaders that they were simply being ‘religious’ and failed to accept the teaching of John the Baptist the man who God had anointed to prepare the way for the coming Messiah. Pastor Ernest will further unpack this teaching for us. If we want to be citizens of God’s kingdom then we need to be citizens who are actively involved in the building up of this kingdom. We are to be involved in making the kingdom strong by being a blessing to others and to willingly share the gospel with those people God places in our lives. Once again, we are confront-
ed with the truth of needing to be more than a Bible ‘believing’ church. We need to be a Bible ‘applying’ church in all we do.