Fulfilling our Commitment
16th Sunday of Ordinary Time
Archbishop Loren Thomas Hines
September 27, 2020
Readings: Ezekiel 18: 1-4, 25-32
Philippians 2: 1-3
Matthew 21: 28-32
Christ shares His life to us through parables. The challenge to work in His vineyard. We go back to Genesis where God told man to cultivate the earth. Our task is to work. To take what God has given us and create beauty out of it. To bring out the greatness of His provisions.
In the world today, we hear all the bad things. It is the responsibility of the church to spread the good things. In the end, God will have a banquet for us filled with rich food and aged wine. We need to bring out the glory of God. Our Gospel tells us of two sons. The father gives the direction and he sets the course. The first son was called into the field to work. But he arrogantly said no. Sometimes this is our attitude. He calls us and we have so many excuses. But although the son said no, he changed his mind and went to the field to work. The 2nd son was given the same instructions. He politely said yes, but his real intention was that he wasn’t going to do it. So he did not go out to the field even if he had said he would. Who was the one who was honoring the father? It was the first one.
This shows us how important our commitments are and how we should fulfill them. The Gospel shows us that the Father was teaching responsibility to the sons. This took place during the time of the religious leaders who were rejecting Christ. But the tax gatherers, prostitutes, and people you think would not be listening to Christ were in fact the ones who were listening to Him and changing their lives. Sad to say we are experiencing and seeing the same things today. The church has not been doing the job. We proclaim but do not perform. We do not see what God is doing for us to make use of what He has given to build His kingdom. We need to live in the justice and righteousness of God to be defenders of the poor and the oppressed. Bringing forth that which is good to the world.
God has given us the ability to perform. He wants us to obey Him from the heart. The challenge for the church is to live out what we proclaim. It is our task to fulfill our responsibility to work in His vineyard, letting His Word be fulfilled in our lives. Performance is what is expected from us.