28 “Tell me what you think about this: A man had two sons. He went to the first son and said, ‘Son, go and work today in my vineyard.’ 29 The son answered, ‘I will not go.’ But later the son changed his mind and went. 30 Then the father went to the other son and said, ‘Son, go and work today in my vineyard.’ The son answered, ‘Yes, sir, I will go and work,’ but he did not go. 31 Which of the two sons obeyed his father?”
The priests and leaders answered, “The first son.”
Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, the tax collectors and the prostitutes will enter the kingdom of God before you do. 32 John came to show you the right way to live. You did not believe him, but the tax collectors and prostitutes believed him. Even after seeing this, you still refused to change your ways and believe him.
A Story About God’s Son
33 “Listen to this story: There was a man who owned a vineyard. He put a wall around it and dug a hole for a winepress and built a tower. Then he leased the land to some farmers and left for a trip. 34 When it was time for the grapes to be picked, he sent his servants to the farmers to get his share of the grapes. 35 But the farmers grabbed the servants, beat one, killed another, and then killed a third servant with stones. 36 So the man sent some other servants to the farmers, even more than he sent the first time. But the farmers did the same thing to the servants that they had done before. 37 So the man decided to send his son to the farmers. He said, ‘They will respect my son.’ 38 But when the farmers saw the son, they said to each other, ‘This son will inherit the vineyard. If we kill him, it will be ours!’ 39 Then the farmers grabbed the son, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. 40 So what will the owner of the vineyard do to these farmers when he comes?”
41 The priests and leaders said, “He will surely kill those evil men. Then he will lease the vineyard to some other farmers who will give him his share of the crop at harvest time.”
42 Jesus said to them, “Surely you have read this in the Scriptures:
‘The stone that the builders rejected became the cornerstone. The Lord did this, and it is wonderful to us.’Psalm 118:22–23
43 “So I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to people who do the things God wants in his kingdom. 44 The person who falls on this stone will be broken, and on whomever that stone falls, that person will be crushed.”[a]
45 When the leading priests and the Pharisees heard these stories, they knew Jesus was talking about them. 46 They wanted to arrest him, but they were afraid of the people, because the people believed that Jesus was a prophet.
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