“Why…did it bring forth wild grapes?” —Isaiah 5:4
God took perfect care of His vineyard, the house of Israel (Is 5:1ff). With a perfect Gardener and perfect care, you would expect the vineyard to produce domesticated, fruitful grapes. No one would logically expect wild grapes to be produced. For this to happen, the domesticated grapevines that were planted would need to acquire the plant physiology of wild grapes.
Therefore, God told the people of Israel, and us also, that if they wanted to be wild, He would let them live in a condition which fits their desire for wildness. Thus, the Lord tore down the walls which protected the vineyard, allowing wild conditions, wild plants, and wild animals to invade (Is 5:5-6). Perhaps then the Israelites would come to their senses (see Lk 15:17ff) and return to the Lord. Perhaps the wild grapes would learn from the merciless effects of wild living and humbly return to their domesticated, fruitful nature that comes with being children of God.
When Jesus proclaimed the parable of the vineyard in today’s Gospel reading, those who heard understood Jesus’ message clearly (see Mt 21:45). However, most of those who heard Him rejected His message, rejected God and His protection, and chose wildness and separation from Him.
The message is clear. God’s plan is to bring us into His family so we’ll bear good fruit (Jn 15:5, 8, 16). Repent of any desire to “run wild” and rebel against the Lord (Ex 32:25).
PRAYER: Father, do in me whatever it takes in order to do through me whatever You will.
PROMISE: “Then God’s own peace, which is beyond all understanding, will stand guard over your hearts and minds.” —Phil 4:7
PRAISE: Praise Jesus, rejected, crucified, and risen Lord God!
(From a reflection by a member of the editorial team of the late Fr Al Lauer’s Presentation Ministries)
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