Message 0048
September 18, 2020
Matthew 9:9-13 – Feast of St. Matthew
September 20, 2020

Matthew 20:1-16

25th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Isaiah 55:6-9
Philippians 1:20-24, 27
Matthew 20:1-16

A. Text/Context

  • We have a very beautiful gospel today that speaks that the justice of God is very different from that of our own concept of justice
  • The landowner is in need of laborers to work in his vineyard
  • And so at an early morning by dawn he started looking for workers in the marketplace and agreed with them that they will be paid according to the wage of the day
  • At kulang pa by 9:00 AM he hired another group and another group by 5:00 PM and comes paying time everybody receives the same wage for the day
  • And so the workers who were hired earlier grumbled against the landowner because they expect that they will receive a higher wage because they have longer hours of work
  • But the landowner said: My friend, I am not cheating you, you agreed with me for the usual daily wage
  • I am free to do with my own money

B. Human Situation

  • So here we are my brothers and sisters, our own concept of justice is very different from that of God
  • Humanly speaking, the landowner could be so unfair forgiving similar pay with different work hours
  • But on the other hand, the landowner can do anything what he pleases how to dispose his money
  • For those who worked for a day’s wage, he is fair and just to give to them what is commensurate to their services
  • But for those who worked with shorter work hours and still receive the same amount of wage, the landowner is not unjust, he is just more generous
  • The gospel today gives us a picture as to how the justice of God works and it is so different from our own human concept of justice
  • The justice of God gives us the privilege that no matter how many or how few the sins we commit God can still afford to grant forgiveness
  • That no matter how big or how small or how serious or how light our sins are, God is till ready to forgive our infractions if we have recourse to him
  • With our own measure of justice, certainly, the wage issue practiced by the landowner in the gospel example can cause furor among because the way we see it is that it is really unfair
  • But the thing is that we cannot really question the generosity of God
  • Even if the person is very wicked, God can still forgive him
  • Even if he is a hardened criminal and he ask for forgiveness at the last hour before his death, God will still forgive him
  • Of course when it concerns forgiveness, there is no problem with God because he is always ready to forgive
  • The problem lies on our own part. If we ask for forgiveness, God is ready to grant pardon, there is no problem with God
  • The problem is how to make amends for all the sins that we commit, how to make restitutions for all the damage that we did
  • For example only, we have a philandering husband, he is unfaithful to his wife and his family
  • So that for that reason, bumagsak na ang kabuhayan ng pamilya, nagkaloko loko na ang buhay ng mga anak
  • If the sinner will not be humble enough to ask for forgiveness from his wife and children, nothing will happen
  • God has already forgiven you, but still you have to repair the damage that you have inflicted on your wife and children
  • And that is the difficult part of forgiveness because we need to bow down our head in humility recognizing our sinfulness in order to make amends, in order to restitute for the damages
  • Ang taong naloko mo at nanakawan mo ay nakarecover na sa kanyang madilim na yugto ng kanyang buhay at ngayon ay umasenso na naman uli
  • Pero ang nanloko at nagnakaw ay patuloy pa rin niyang dala-dala ang bigat ng konsiyenya dahil sa kasalanang ginawa niya dahil ayaw niyang umamin doon sa tao kung saan doon siya nagkasala. Hindi pa kumpleto ang reconciliation
  • So this is the difference between living a life with God and living a life of sin. If our life is straight we can sleep in peace kahit maraming trabaho
  • If we live a life of sinfulness, we are always disturbed, baka mahuli tayo, baka ma expose tayo all those necessary fears associated with sins
  • In the end, if we have already repented for our sins and we have not yet fully made amends to restitute for the damages while we are still alive
  • We should not get discouraged because God has already forgiven us. God has ways and means that we enter heaven totally clean even from the slightest stain of sin

C. Challenge

  • So today once more we are reminded that God is a welcoming being ready to embrace every sinner who ha recourse to him
  • The unending mercy of God requires that all the sins that we commit no matter how big or how small, God will still forgive us as reiterated in the 1st reading
  • At the same time we are also reminded how the justice of God works, so that for every sin that we commit, we are required to make restitution so that forgiveness, reconciliation will be totally complete while we are still alive
  • Nevertheless, if forgiveness will not be made complete in our life here on earth, God has already marked our souls for salvation

 

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