Matthew 20:1-16 Children can follow along in Spark page 298.
Verse 15 - "Are you envious because I am generous?"
This is a passage that Pastor Vern preached on a few weeks ago. He reflected on the power of privilege in our lives. For this is a key passage to reflect on the role of fairness and equity in our lives. Regarding simplicity, it also helps us to name what we need, and when we are willing to share. The God of this earth is not interested in fairness as much as everyone having enough. The ultimate equation is not based on how many hours, how much to pay/earn per hour, and not how much a salary should be. The ultimate equation is God giving enough to everyone. There are other passages that encourage people to prepare for their future needs, but they must be wrestled with alongside this passage.
In Matthew 20 Jesus tells us this story of the owner of a vineyard paying everyone the same wage regardless of how much they worked (when they showed up to work). Those who came in the morning were jealous that those arriving in the evening were given the same wage. However, the owner is allowed to do as he will. Depending on how it's read, this can actually be interpreted toward two different meanings. One is that we should not be like the morning workers - we have enough, and others should too. On the other hand, it reminds us that maybe the owners have too much power. Their are many billionaires who are able to have "wealth without work." They have the power to decide how much people earn, and often favor their families and friends. Should a CEO get a bonus for slashing the benefits of the lowest paid?
In some ways, this has become a more unsettling scripture for me. I do wonder, was Jesus scolding those of privilege, or pointing out how absurd some privilege is? Or maybe, even unintentionally, was he doing both?
Events & Evites:
Tory - Pastor of Children and Youth Faith Formation.