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I Don't Think So Dad!


Matthew 21:23-32

Verse 29 “‘I will not,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went.

After yesterday’s discussion regarding the respect due authority figures we are going to take the next couple of days and look at the sons and their choices.

Here we have the first son. First born sons were very important in Jewish culture as they were the ones who inherited the greatest portion at the father’s death. They were seen as the head of the family after the father’s death and were often quite special to the father. Not that a firstborn was favored exactly but there would be times of a father trying extra hard to pour what he knew and believed into his oldest son so that after the father died, his wishes would still be carried on to future generations.

God had this same relationship with the Israelites. He had chosen a promised land for them. He had taught them and laid out commands for them to follow that would help them stand out from others. They were to be living as if they were living for the Father’s name to be glorified. He had tried teaching them all they needed to know to follow Him and reflect Him to the world.

The father in our parable tells his firstborn to go work in the vineyard. This was likely not the first time he had been told to work in the vineyard. This had been one of his jobs all his life. He knew the work involved. The son knew that he should obey. He didn’t want to but he knew he should. But instead of saying yes to his father, he says no.

Later the son’s conscience was bothering him. He knew he should have obeyed. Maybe what he had chosen to do instead didn’t hold the satisfaction he had hoped. Whatever the case, the son changes his mind and heads out into the vineyard.

This is something we need to remember when we have chosen to disobey, there is the option of changing our minds to obey. It may not be soon enough to do what we were supposed to do at first but we can, and must, choose to obey the next time God tells us to do something. To love is to obey.

Making It Personal

Have you ever chosen not to obey and then regretted your decision? What was the result? Have you chosen obedience every time since?

Making It Personal Kids

Have you ever told your mom or dad no? What was the result? Did it help you obey the next time? Do you choose to obey God?

Closing Prayer

Father, we haven’t always been eager to obey You. We know that if we love You we should be willing to obey. Break our self-wills that cause us to choose our desires over Yours. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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