Isaiah 55, 6-9; Psalm 145; Philippians 1, 20-27; Matthew 20, 1-16

(September 20th, 2020)

By +Guy Sansaricq

Today again another parable opens our minds to new and enlightening teachings. Truly the line in the first reading points to the key teaching: “As far as the heavens are above the earth, so far are my ways above your ways and my thoughts above your thoughts,” says the Lord.

A rich farmer we are told hired day workers to labor in his field. Some began working at dawn, others at 9 am, still others at noon, still others at 3 pm and, would you believe it?, at 5 pm. Now the punch line of the story is that at pay time at 6 pm, all the workers received the same pay.

Of course this caused a certain disturbance among the laborers. We too are somewhat perplexed.

The point being made is that in God’s view “THE LAST WILL BE FIRST AND THE FIRST WILL BE LAST.” To this we can venture two explanations: first, the pagans from all the nations of the world may be considered as the last as compared to the chosen people of the Old Testament. Yet, in the New Covenant, both have access to the same privileges. The people of the New Covenant came last to God’s knowledge and grace yet are in the first rows of God’s favorites. The Christians of all races and languages are not to be looked down as second class citizens by old time Christians.

A second explanation regards the grace of salvation granted to the repentant sinner as for instance the good thief at the Cross who is promised immediate access to paradise after a long life of crimes. As soon as one repents, he steps up to the hall of glory and is entitled to sit next to those who never strayed.The story stresses God’s infinite liberality and boundless mercy toward the late comers

So, see! It is not too late for you!  Repent and enjoy the favors of an all embracing Father!