Our scripture this week is Matthew 21:21-32.
Jesus entered the temple courts, and, while he was teaching, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him. “By what authority are you doing these things?” they asked. “And who gave you this authority?” Jesus replied, “I will also ask you one question. If you answer me, I will tell you by what authority I am doing these things. John’s baptism—where did it come from? Was it from heaven, or of human origin?” They discussed it among themselves and said, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will ask, ‘Then why didn’t you believe him?’ But if we say, ‘Of human origin’—we are afraid of the people, for they all hold that John was a prophet.” So they answered Jesus, “We don’t know.” Then he said, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things. What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work today in the vineyard.’ ‘I will not,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went. Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, ‘I will, sir,’ but he did not go. Which of the two did what his father wanted?” “The first,” they answered. Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you. For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him.”
Jesus reminds the priests and elders that John the Baptist was sent for them, a subtle hint that He has come for them too. He is giving them a chance to change their minds and follow Him. Jesus is always ready for us to give up our selfish ways and be saved.
Jesus wanted everyone to know the Good News, that God was waiting to forgive their sins when they repented and turned to Him in faith. While He often debated the religious leaders, He wanted them to understand and receive God’s blessing as much as any other. No one is above or beyond His love and mercy.
Think you’ve missed your opportunity to change your life? Think again! Jesus is waiting with open arms to welcome you back and set you on the right path again.
Gracious God, we are grateful for Your boundless love, offered to us no matter what our situation. Help us to take Your love to everyone that they may be part of the kingdom. Amen.