The Parable of the Labourers in the vineyard. This parable as other parables of Jesus can be understood at different levels. Is this parable about work, just wages or Gods generosity?
The landowner offers the first workers a denarius for their days work which they accepted and were grateful. The late comers were happy to have work and didn’t ask what their wage would be for their days work, as for them work
was an unexpected gift from the landowner at such a late hour. When the day was done the landowner gives the latecomers a denarius for their work for which they were grateful . The first /early comer workers expected that they will receive more for their days work so were disappointed when they only received a denarius, the same as the late comers. This parable teaches us about
Gods generosity, who gives the same reward to all, whether we have laboured in the heat of the day or in the cool of the evening.
Is this parable about fair wages or about the Kingdom of God which is for all, no matter whether we have lived a good life since our early days or we came to faith later in life eg. St Augustine.
“The first will be last and the last will be first”
This parable leaves me with many questions and thoughts to ponder on!
How just am I in my dealing with others?
Do I expect more because I give more to my community than others.?
Do I share what I have with others?
Do I pay just wages to my workers ?
I must remember The Kingdom of God is for All.
I’m no more important or worth more than others. Sitting at Gods right or left, is only Gods to give.
Am I prone to seeking personal reward and comparing myself to others?
Do I feel envious of seeing others reap benefits or praises which I believe I deserve?
Elizabeth Buchel has worked as an educator and psychologist for many years. She is formed in Passionist and Benedictine Spirituality. Elizabeth is a Passionist Companion and has been a active parishioner of St Brigids Marrickville since 1985.