211 Chapter_21

211 Chapter_21 - 21 AWoe unto you . . . hypocrites!@ The...

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21 A Woe unto you . . . hypocrites! @ The following is Bruce R. McConkie = s commentary of the parallel passages covered in the above chapter of the student manual. Reading the entire selection constitutes 43 pages. Parable Of The Two Sons p.589 Our Lord's Parable of the Two Sons grows out of his discussion with the chief priests, scribes, and elders on the question of authority in the ministry. In an attempt to entangle him in some violation of rabbinical law, they had propounded a wholly insincere question relative to Jesus' authority to preach and minister among them. To avoid their trap he had asked them by what authority John the Baptist acted, a question which under the circumstances dramatized their own hypocrisy. p.589 Now as a rebuke to his questioners and to give his own answer relative to the Baptist's authority, Jesus speaks the Parable of the Two Sons. In it the Father of the sons is God himself who offers employment in his earthly vineyard to all his children. The first son, who initially refused to labor in his Father's vineyard but later repented and served him, is symbolical of the publicans and harlots who repented of their early sins and became faithful servants in their Father's cause. Such was the case with many such who had flocked to the shores of Jordan to hear the Baptist and inquire: "Master, what shall we do?" (Luke 3:12.) p.589 The second son, who willingly accepted an assignment in the vineyard but then failed to render the appointed labors, is symbolical of the Jewish leaders who professed to be about their Father's business but were in fact letting the vineyard degenerate into a fruitless wilderness. Publicans and sinners had repented and accepted John's baptism, but these leaders who claimed to have the light already "rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him." (Luke 7:29-30.) p.589 - p.590 Matt. 21:31. The publicans and harlots go into the kingdom of God before you] In this statement Jesus does two things: (1) He testifies that the ministry of John was of God, that the Baptist was a legal administrator whose teachings and priestly performances did in fact prepare men for salvation in the kingdom of God; and (2) He teaches in forceful and plain language that repentance is a living, abiding principle which actually works. "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners." (1 Tim. 1:15.) What, publicans and harlots in the kingdom of God! Yes, and even the chief priests, scribes, and elders -- if they also repent and keep the commandments. p.590 32. In the way of righteousness] `John was a prophet, a preacher of righteousness, one who taught men what they must do to gain salvation, one who pointed out the path or way of righteousness which leads to the kingdom of God.' p.590 I. V. Matt. 21:32-34a. Christ and his prophets cannot be separated from each other. Men cannot believe in one and not the other. John was a true prophet who bore record that Jesus was the Messiah. Accordingly no one could accept John as a prophet without believing in Christ; and
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211 Chapter_21 - 21 AWoe unto you . . . hypocrites!@ The...

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