Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
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11-05-2016, 12:21 PM
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
(08-05-2016 05:55 PM)debna27 Wrote:  It seems hugely unjust for one person to do several times as much work as another and both receive the same payment; but, on the other hand, if someone agrees to a certain contract only to see someone else get a better one, I suppose there's not much room for complaint. Is this thinking erroneous/a vestige of religious mentality? Do any of you have any opinions on the morality of this message?

Well as far as Christian mythology regarding salvation goes, this fits in with it pretty well. The idea is about forgiveness, and on a meta-level, about gaining converts. No one is going to want to convert to a religion if they're told they go to a shitty heaven because they spent their first 60 years as a heathen.

Regarding the analogy with workers getting paid the same rate, there are two issues:
  • As far as the whole No True Christian fallacy is concerned, most Christians I know say that true Christians want to live like Christ. So getting all uppity that someone else gets the same reward wouldn't be fitting at all. They'd be happy the person eventually got with the program.
  • The "workers getting paid the same rate" parable isn't such a good analogy, because of the idea that you might just flat-out get hit by a truck, or something. Imagine if you had no idea when the supervisor was going to come to the field and announce the work day was over. If you were waiting to show up in the late afternoon to get a full day's pay, and they all quit at 2:00, you'd be fucked.

Now, regarding the "morality" of all of this, I don't see a problem with it in context of other Christian beliefs. There are way more problematic things to worry about in the Bible and the meta-religion. Just off the top of my head:
  • The existence of hell, at all.
  • The idea that the punishment/reward system is based off of swearing the correct oath of fealty, and not the actions you take.
  • The existence of childhood illnesses like Tay Sachs in a world presided over by an intelligent entity.
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11-05-2016, 01:04 PM
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
(11-05-2016 12:21 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  Now, regarding the "morality" of all of this, I don't see a problem with it in context of other Christian beliefs. There are way more problematic things to worry about in the Bible and the meta-religion. Just off the top of my head:
  • The existence of hell, at all.
  • The idea that the punishment/reward system is based off of swearing the correct oath of fealty, and not the actions you take.
  • The existence of childhood illnesses like Tay Sachs in a world presided over by an intelligent entity.
You're silly, Rob. Don't you know that God works in mysterious ways™? Tongue

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12-05-2016, 05:54 AM
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
(11-05-2016 01:04 PM)Vosur Wrote:  You're silly, Rob. Don't you know that God works in mysterious ways™? Tongue

Thanks. You reminded me of a fourth bullet point that I forgot to add:
  • God doing things that look terrible at face value, refusing to explain what he's doing, and leaving it up to us to come up with ad hoc apologetics to rationalize continuing to follow him.
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19-05-2016, 01:02 PM (This post was last modified: 19-05-2016 01:10 PM by jason_delisle.)
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
(08-05-2016 05:55 PM)debna27 Wrote:  So I've been dealing with a lot of stress at my job lately, some of which is because I feel like certain people do a lot more of the work than others even though we're all paid the same rate. I know this is quite a common issue, and when I was thinking about it the other day I remembered having a similar complaint in high school regarding group projects. When I talked to one of my teachers about it, he reminded me of the parable in Matthew 20 in which a man hires workers throughout the day and gives the same wage to those who worked all day as to those who only worked for an hour. The lesson that my teacher was emphasizing was that I shouldn't compare my rewards/grades to those around me, and I should just do my best and be happy with what I earn from it (it was obviously a Christian school). I've also heard this parable applied to accepting Christ, that those who convert late in life get the same reward (heaven) as the life-long believers.

I remember being really unsatisfied deep down with the message that this parable was teaching. At the time, I thought this was just my sin nature, which Jesus was trying to teach me to fight against. Now, I obviously think rather differently. I'm rather torn on the overall message though. It seems hugely unjust for one person to do several times as much work as another and both receive the same payment; but, on the other hand, if someone agrees to a certain contract only to see someone else get a better one, I suppose there's not much room for complaint. Is this thinking erroneous/a vestige of religious mentality? Do any of you have any opinions on the morality of this message?

(Also, I feel like I should point out that I know that the Bible isn't a reliable source from which to take one's morals, even though a good percentage of the society in which we live often does that exact thing. However, I do think that there are some ideas in it that are interesting to consider from a philosophical standpoint, which is why I'm bothering to bring this up at all).
Fixed

WARNING: SERMON IN PROGRESS. READER DISCRETION ADVISED!

This lengthy parable is found only in the gospel of Matthew. Jesus tells the Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard (Matthew 20:1-16) in response to Peter’s question in Matthew 19:27: "We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us?" Peter wanted to know what reward would be given to those who give up everything to follow Jesus. In response, Jesus explains this truth about the kingdom of heaven.

Planting, maintaining and harvesting vineyards in first-century Israel was strenuous work requiring hard physical labor in the heat of summer. Often, additional laborers were required to get all the work done. The owner of this particular vineyard went to the marketplace at the first hour of the morning (6:00 a.m.) to find workers for the day. His offered wage of one denarius, a Roman’s soldier’s pay for a day, was generous indeed. The workers in the first group were more than happy to work for the generous wage.

As the day progressed and more workers were hired, the specific wage was not mentioned, but the landowner promised to pay “whatever is right.” Apparently, the workers were sufficiently confident of the landowner’s character that they trusted him at his word. Altogether, four groups of workers were hired, the last group just one hour before the end of the day. When the time came for the wages to be paid, the first group of workers saw the last group being paid a denarius and were naturally thinking they would be paid more since they had worked the longest. Their anger against the landowner spilled forth when they saw they would all be paid the same, even though they got exactly what they had agreed upon when they were hired. The landowner was forced to defend his actions to the first group, even though he had dealt them in perfect fairness according to the contract.

The landowner, whose decision to pay all the workers the same was an act of mercy—not injustice—represents God, whose grace and mercy are shed abundantly upon those of His choosing. “For he says to Moses, ‘I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.’ It does not, therefore, depend on man's desire or effort, but on God's mercy” (Romans 9:15-16). In the matter of salvation, His grace and mercy are given to those whose self-righteous works could never obtain it. We are all sinful and “fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23), but His grace is sufficient to redeem all who believe. Whether God calls someone early or late in life to partake of His grace, the glory and praise for our salvation is His and His alone and in no way amounts to unfairness. Just as the landowner has a right to do what he wishes with his own money, so does God have the right to have mercy on whom He will have mercy.

The first group of workers in the vineyard resented receiving the same wage as the last group. Their attitude was similar to that of the Pharisees, who were incensed at Jesus’ teaching that others could inherit a heavenly kingdom they thought was reserved for them alone. They despised Jesus for offering the kingdom to poor, oppressed, weak sinners whom He made equal to them. In verse 15, the landowner asks, “Is your eye evil because I am good?” The “evil eye” was a Hebrew expression referring to jealousy and envy. God’s goodness and mercy produced in the self-righteous Pharisees the evil eye of envy. The rest of the workers received their wages without complaint or envy of others. In the same way, as Christians, we should rejoice when others come to the Savior, as we should rejoice in the service others render to Him. He is faithful to reward us for our service as He has promised, and how He rewards others should be of no consequence to us, nor should it affect our devotion to Him.

The message in verse 16, “the last will be first, and the first last,” is that no matter how long or how hard a believer works during his lifetime, the reward of eternal life will be the same given to all—an eternity of bliss in heaven in the presence of God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. The thief on the cross (Luke 23:39-43), whose life of service was limited to a moment of repentance and confession of faith in Christ, received the same reward of eternal life as the apostle Paul. Of course, Scripture also teaches that there are different rewards in heaven for different services, but the ultimate reward of eternal life will be achieved by all equally.
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19-05-2016, 01:09 PM
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
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19-05-2016, 07:28 PM
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
I told them it was about forgiveness(mercy) they didn't believe me.

English is my second language.
I AM DEPLORABLE AND IRREDEEMABLE
SHE PERSISTED WE RESISTED
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19-05-2016, 07:31 PM
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
(19-05-2016 07:28 PM)Alla Wrote:  I told them it was about forgiveness(mercy) they didn't believe me.

But mercy and forgiveness are alien to Chuck Norris mind.

Religion is bullshit. The winner of the last person to post wins thread.Yes
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19-05-2016, 07:35 PM
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
(19-05-2016 07:31 PM)Leo Wrote:  
(19-05-2016 07:28 PM)Alla Wrote:  I told them it was about forgiveness(mercy) they didn't believe me.

But mercy and forgiveness are alien to Chuck Norris mind.

Chuck Norris is the Übermensch. He is beyond good and evil.

There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. -Camus
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19-05-2016, 07:43 PM
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
(08-05-2016 11:34 PM)Alla Wrote:  what you said is just so, so stupid, pastor.

Then you won't have any trouble writing a paragraph on what's stupid about each point.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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19-05-2016, 08:28 PM
RE: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
No, not any trouble. He said this: "You even being here is a sin!"

English is my second language.
I AM DEPLORABLE AND IRREDEEMABLE
SHE PERSISTED WE RESISTED
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