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Lesson 143: The Parable of the Wicked Husbandmen

Updated: Jul 10, 2022

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INTRODUCTION. This parable was spoken by Jesus on Tuesday of his final week

on earth. By that time the Jewish rulers were actively plotting to put Jesus to death.

The parable is about a man who planted a vineyard. Vineyards were common in Palestine, and grapes were the most important fruit in Judea. After the landowner planted the grapevines, he put a fence of wood or stone or a hedge of thorns around the vineyard to protect it from the wild animals. A watch tower was built in the middle of the vineyard as a lookout against thieves and animals, especially foxes. A winepress was also provided. The press consisted of two vats dug in the ground and lined with stone. The vats were dug on different levels and connected with channels. The grapes were trodden on the upper level, generally by the feet of men, and the juice ran through the openings and was collected in the lower vat.

The parable of the wicked husbandmen is distinct from others in that every detail

has meaning:

• the vineyard is the nation of Israel;

• the householder or master of the vineyard is God;

• the husbandmen are the priests, scribes, and elders of the Jews;

• the servants who were sent are the prophets of God;

• the son is Jesus.

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