Fairness and generosity

11 February 2014

As i was reading the parable about the laborers in the vineyard in Matthew 20, i realised the parable was demonstrating the fairness and generosity of God.

In the parable, the Master of the vineyard hired workers at different times during the day and each worker’s wage was agreed before they started working. It was only at the end of the day when the Master paid out the workers that those who were hired earlier were offended by those who worked less hours but were paid exactly the same as them. When challenged about this apparent lack of fairness, the Master replied that it WAS FAIR because each got what they had agreed to be paid in the first place, but it was out of the Master’s generosity that those who were hired later received the same wages.

In this parable, both the faultless wisdom, fairness and generosity of God were displayed. It took me sometime to come to terms with this parable because i always did feel that those who worked longer should have received more. But to see this in a different light reveals that it is a beautiful analogy of how God is not only fair and generous, but that in this, His grace is also shown. Grace is receiving a blessing that we did not deserve in the first place.

This is the same Grace that is shown to us when we receive Jesus. Not by works, so that no one may boast, but by the grace of God. From this parable, i see a God who is less concerned with economics and more concerned with ensuring that no one is left behind or left out from receiving His grace.

If i struggled to understand this parable alone, i am humbled with the thought that there may also be many times when i have failed to see the beauty and love of God in other circumstances that seemed unfair.

Father, your patience and love surpasses my understanding, but i am glad that You are so patient and kind, bounding in steadfast love and faithfulness. May i be quieted and be stilled by Your Spirit when circumstances around me seem unfair, and know that i can rest assured in Your sovereign will and amazing grace.

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