Matthew 20-21: The Last Shall Be First

I love the story that Jesus tells about the master who hires day laborers to work His field. I love it because it’s a simple and profound reminder of God’s grace toward us.

Jesus tells the story of a man who goes out in the morning and hires men to work his field. He agrees to pay each of them a standard day’s wage. Then, every few hours, he goes by the same spot and hires more men. He does this even until the last hour of the day.

When it comes time to pay everyone, the master pays them all equally, one day’s wage. Upon seeing this, the men hired first are upset and question the judgement of the master. But then he says this:

‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong. Did you not agree with me for a denarius? Take what belongs to you and go. I choose to give to this last worker as I give to you. Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?’

Jesus point here is this, God calls whom He wills when He wills and invites everyone to share equally in the blessings of Christ. There is no favoritism in the kingdom of God. The worst sinner saved stands shoulder to shoulder with the most faithful follower. This is possible because not one of us deserves this amazing grace. God sought us out and “hired” us into his service by the blood of Christ. We didn’t deserve this gift. He gave it because He is so great.

So whether we have been a Christian for 50 years and followed God faithfully all this time, or we are an inmate on death row, saved at the final hour through the words of a prison evangelist, we will receive the full and unparalleled blessings of Jesus Christ!

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