Wednesday Mass readings (Israel thinks it needs a human king / Equal pay for unequal work)

August

Reading 1
Jgs 9:6-15

All the citizens of Shechem and all Beth-millo came together
and proceeded to make Abimelech king
by the terebinth at the memorial pillar in Shechem.

When this was reported to him,
Jotham went to the top of Mount Gerizim and, standing there,
cried out to them in a loud voice:
“Hear me, citizens of Shechem, that God may then hear you!
Once the trees went to anoint a king over themselves.
So they said to the olive tree, ‘Reign over us.’
But the olive tree answered them, ‘Must I give up my rich oil,
whereby men and gods are honored,
and go to wave over the trees?’
Then the trees said to the fig tree, ‘Come; you reign over us!’
But the fig tree answered them,
‘Must I give up my sweetness and my good fruit,
and go to wave over the trees?’
Then the trees said to the vine, ‘Come you, and reign over us.’
But the vine answered them,
‘Must I give up my wine that cheers gods and men,
and go to wave over the trees?’

Then all the trees said to the buckthorn, ‘Come; you reign over us!’
But the buckthorn replied to the trees,
‘If you wish to anoint me king over you in good faith,
come and take refuge in my shadow.
Otherwise, let fire come from the buckthorn
and devour the cedars of Lebanon.’”

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 21:2-3, 4-5, 6-7

R. (2a) Lord, in your strength the king is glad.
O LORD, in your strength the king is glad;
in your victory how greatly he rejoices!
You have granted him his heart’s desire;
you refused not the wish of his lips.

R. Lord, in your strength the king is glad.
For you welcomed him with goodly blessings,
you placed on his head a crown of pure gold.
He asked life of you: you gave him
length of days forever and ever.
R. Lord, in your strength the king is glad.
Great is his glory in your victory;
majesty and splendor you conferred upon him.
You made him a blessing forever,
you gladdened him with the joy of your face.
R. Lord, in your strength the king is glad.

**
Gospel
Mt 20:1-16**

Jesus told his disciples this parable:
“The Kingdom of Heaven is like a landowner

who went out at dawn to hire laborers for his vineyard.
After agreeing with them for the usual daily wage,
he sent them into his vineyard.
Going out about nine o’clock,
he saw others standing idle in the marketplace,
and he said to them, ‘You too go into my vineyard,
and I will give you what is just.’
So they went off.
And he went out again around noon,
and around three o’clock, and did likewise.
Going out about five o’clock,
he found others standing around, and said to them,
‘Why do you stand here idle all day?’
They answered, ‘Because no one has hired us.’
He said to them, ‘You too go into my vineyard.’
When it was evening the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman,
‘Summon the laborers and give them their pay,
beginning with the last and ending with the first.’
When those who had started about five o’clock came,
each received the usual daily wage.
So when the first came, they thought that they would receive more,
but each of them also got the usual wage.
And on receiving it they grumbled against the landowner, saying,
***‘These last ones worked only one hour,
and you have made them equal to us,
who bore the day’s burden and the heat.’
He said to one of them in reply,***‘My friend, I am not cheating you.
Did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage?
Take what is yours and go.
What if I wish to give this last one the same as you?
Or am I not free to do as I wish with my own money?
***Are you envious because I am generous?’***Thus, the last will be first, and the first will be last.”

*Somewhere else in the OT God gets angry because the people want a king (a human one) to rule them instead of being ruled just by Him… hmmm… where have we heard that one before?? :rolleyes: In this psg it seems that no one wants to be their king (the symbolism of the trees). I wouldn’t want to rule over people who are supposed to be God’s chosen… who are supposed to have HIm for king either… :hypno: God is a tough act to follow… :smiley:

Gospel: If a person is good, hard-working, always praying Christian all his life (does anyone know this kind of person? :hmmm::coffeeread: ) he usually expects to get something extra in Heaven (?) but apparently the person who accepts Christ at the very end gets the same reward (?). Or at least They both get Heaven, in any case.

If a person is baptized before death, he will go straight to Heaven, assuming he doesn’t commit any sins before death… At least this is what I THINK the Church teaches… because baptism washes away all sin…

It is very hard to be a Christian in this world (a good one) so i can see why people postpone it… but we never know when we’re going to go so…

and besides, just because people get “equal” rewards in the end doesn’t mean that they will get it immediately… They may have to go through Purgatory first… *

does this psg mean there are not levels of Heaven? Does anyone know what the RC Church teaches about this?

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