December 3rd, 2006
When Albert Einstein was in school, his teachers regarded his as one of the slower students. Despite all their training, expertise, experience, and knowledge they made a fundamental misjudgement. When someone comes along who challenges fundamental thinking, who is thinking outside the square, whether in science, technology or any aspect of life, society’s first reaction is to shut them down. We don’t like anyone messing with the status quo; we are creatures of habit. But sometimes the stone which the builders reject turns out to be the most important of all.
Luke’s Account of the Good News — Chapter 20
20:1 One day he was teaching people in the temple and preaching the good news. The senior priests and religious lawyers came to him with the elders 20:2 and asked “Tell us, what authority do you have to do these things? Who is giving you this authority?” 20:3 He answered, “I will ask you one question as well. Tell me, 20:4 was the baptism of John from heaven or from humans?” 20:5 They discussed amongst themselves, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say, ‘Why didn’t you believe him?’ 20:6 But if we say, ‘From humans,’ the people will stone us because they are convinced that John was a prophet.” 20:7 They answered that they didn’t know where it was from. 20:8 Jesus said, “In that case I won’t tell you by what authority I do these things.”
20:9 He told the people this parable, “A landowner planted a vineyard and rented it out to some farmers, then went to another country for a long time. 20:10 When harvest time came, he sent a servant to the farmers to collect his share of the fruit of the vineyard. But the farmers assaulted him and sent him away with nothing. 20:11 The owner sent another servant, and they also assaulted and insulted him and sent him away with nothing. 20:12 He sent a third, and they injured him and threw him out. 20:13 The owner of the vineyard said, ‘What will I do? I will send my beloved son. Maybe they will respect him.’
20:14 “But when the farmers saw him, they thought to themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him and the inheritance will be ours.’ 20:15 They threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. So what will the vineyard owner do to them? 20:16 He will come and destroy these farmers and give the vineyard to others.” When they heard it, they said, “May that never happen!”
20:17 But he looked at them and said, “Then why was it predicted, ‘The stone which the builders rejected has become the head of the corner?’ 20:18 Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces, and it will crush everyone it falls on.”
20:19 The senior priests and religious lawyers wanted to arrest him straight away, but they were afraid of the people, because they knew he had spoken this parable against them. 20:20 They watched him and sent spies pretending to be righteous, in order to catch him saying something wrong, to justify handing him over to the power and authority of the governor. 20:21 They asked him, “Teacher, we know that you say and teach what is right, and teach the true way of God without bias towards anyone. 20:22 Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?” 20:23 But he could see through their deception, and said, “Why are you trying me out? 20:24 Show me a denarius. Whose image and inscription are on it?” They answered, “Caesar’s.” 20:25 He said, “So give Caesar the things that belong to Caesar, and give God the things that belong to God.”
20:26 They were unable to catch him saying anything wrong to the people. They were amazed and silenced by his answer. 20:27 Some Sadducees, who say that there is no such thing as a resurrection, came up 20:28 and asked him, “Teacher, Moses instructed us that if a man’s brother dies childless but leaving a widow, his brother should marry the widow and bring up children for his brother. 20:29 Once there were seven brothers. The first married a wife, and died childless. 20:30 The second married her, and he died childless. 20:31 The third married her, and similarly all seven died, leaving no children. 20:32 Afterward the woman also died. 20:33 So in the resurrection whose wife will she be? All seven had her as a wife.”
20:34 Jesus said, “In this life people get married. 20:35 But people who are considered worthy of the new life and the resurrection from the dead do not get married. 20:36 They no longer die because they are like angels, and are children of God, being children of the resurrection. 20:37 But the fact that dead people are raised to life was demonstrated even by Moses at the bush, when he called the Lord ‘The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’. 20:38 He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, because all of them are alive to him.” 20:39 Some of the religious lawyers answered, “Good answer, Teacher.” 20:40 They no longer dared to ask him any questions.
20:41 He said to them, “Why do they say that the Christ is David’s son? 20:42 David himself says in the book of Psalms, ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, 20:43 until I make your enemies into a footstool for your feet.”‘ 20:44 David calls him ‘Lord’, so how can he be his son?”
20:45 All the people could hear when he said to his disciples, 20:46 “Beware of the religious lawyers who want to walk in long robes, and to be greeted respectfully in the marketplaces, and to get the best seats in the synagogues and the best places at feasts. 20:47 They take houses away from widows, and say long phoney prayers. They will receive the most severe judgement.”
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