“What do you think? A man had two sons. And he went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’ And he answered, ‘I will not,’ but afterward he changed his mind and went. And he went to the other son and said the same. And he answered, ‘I go, sir,’ but did not go. Which of the two did the will of his father?” They said, “The first.” Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes go into the kingdom of God before you. For John came to you in the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes believed him. And even when you saw it, you did not afterward change your minds and believe him.”
Here Jesus is interacting with the chief priests and elders in the temple. They are the old men of great learning who have turned their religion into an exclusive club. They are not happy with this popular young preacher who heals and forgives. They have owned the franchise to God for a long time, and now the Son of God has shown up to do a little quality control.
It’s not too late to change your mind and do the will of God. Whether you have been a prostitute, a thief, or an insufferable religious know it all, God will be happy to see you coming to faith in Him, or even returning to faithfulness after a long absence. He loves you, and wants what is best for you, which is to know Him.
These religious rulers will eventually conspire to have Jesus executed. Jesus knows this, and will even forgive them of this foul deed if they will change their minds and return to Him. It is these men Jesus will be talking about when He is nailed to a cross and gasps, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34).
Donald Marsh ©2020