Sermon for Sunday, May 21, 2023


Habakkuk 1:1-11, Matthew 20:1-16

Habakkuk 1:1–11 (NIV): The prophecy that Habakkuk the prophet received.

      2 How long, LORD, must I call for help,

         but you do not listen?

         Or cry out to you, “Violence!”

         but you do not save?

      3 Why do you make me look at injustice?

         Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?

         Destruction and violence are before me;

         there is strife, and conflict abounds.

      4 Therefore the law is paralyzed,

         and justice never prevails.

         The wicked hem in the righteous,

         so that justice is perverted.

      *5 “Look at the nations and watch—

         and be utterly amazed.

         For I am going to do something in your days

         that you would not believe,

         even if you were told.

      6 I am raising up the Babylonians,

         that ruthless and impetuous people,

         who sweep across the whole earth

         to seize dwellings not their own.

      7 They are a feared and dreaded people;

         they are a law to themselves

         and promote their own honor.

      8 Their horses are swifter than leopards,

         fiercer than wolves at dusk.

         Their cavalry gallops headlong;

         their horsemen come from afar.

         They fly like an eagle swooping to devour;

         9they all come intent on violence.

         Their hordes advance like a desert wind

         and gather prisoners like sand.

      10 They mock kings

         and scoff at rulers.

         They laugh at all fortified cities;

         by building earthen ramps they capture them.

      11 Then they sweep past like the wind and go on—

         guilty people, whose own strength is their god.”

Matthew 20:1–16 (NIV): 20 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard. 2 He agreed to pay them a denarius for the day and sent them into his vineyard.

3 “About nine in the morning he went out and saw others standing in the marketplace doing nothing. 4 He told them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’ 5 So they went.

“He went out again about noon and about three in the afternoon and did the same thing. 6 About five in the afternoon he went out and found still others standing around. He asked them, ‘Why have you been standing here all day long doing nothing?’

7 “ ‘Because no one has hired us,’ they answered.

“He said to them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard.’

8 “When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the workers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last ones hired and going on to the first.’

9 “The workers who were hired about five in the afternoon came and each received a denarius. 10 So when those came who were hired first, they expected to receive more. But each one of them also received a denarius. 11 When they received it, they began to grumble against the landowner. 12 ‘These who were hired last worked only one hour,’ they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat of the day.’

13 “But he answered one of them, ‘I am not being unfair to you, friend. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius? 14 Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you. 15 Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous?’

16 “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *