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Matthew 20 vs 1-19 - Matt Korniotes

Matthew 20:1-19

Matthew Chapter 20 Verses 1 – 15

  • I love this parable because it is so revealing of this fact…our perception of “fair” is so totally biased towards ourselves! Isn’t that so true?! I’m in this argument, this circumstance or that situation and as soon as I get seemingly the short end of the stick, I immediately begin to grumble…but the short end of the stick falls to someone else, and I’m like, “God is with you, brother!” HA!
  • It’s so true! I’ve noticed this in movies…there are good guys and bad guys, right? And as soon as the bad guy gets tossed off of a cliff, something in me celebrates…and you know what, more and more I have an issue with that…because as bad as that bad guy is, he’s still a guy…and while my flesh wants nothing but profit and wants nothing but the bad guy to die, my spirit knows that in my story, well if I’m honest, I’m not the good guy…Jesus is…and so my idea of justice, my perception of fair is so warped…
  • The first servants complain and their complaint is entirely unfair…towards whom? The landowner! There was an agreement. There was an accord(pirate joke – what did the pirate say when he turned 80? AYE MATEY! HA!) - you come work for me, I’ll pay you a day’s wage…so what is Jesus’ answering or showing them? He’s answering their question from Chapter 19 verse 27…Peter says, “We have forsaken all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?”


  • The answer is layered. First, there are no levels of salvation. Have you ever met someone and thought, “Man that dude is SO saved!” HA! Well, the truth is from the least to the greatest, Jesus saves, and salvation is equal among the saints whether they are saved at 4 years of age or 4 minutes before dying. And that almost seems unfair…the person saved at 4 years old lives their whole life for the Lord, builds the kingdom, grows up in the things of God and they get the same salvation as the death bed confession…? Again, the answer is layered…
  • God says, “Is your eye evil because I am good?” I love that statement…because we want the bad guys to get thrown off of the cliff…but while we were yet sinners, enemies of God, Christ died for us…One thing you may have missed…the third hour, sixth hour, ninth hour, eleventh hour…what does He call them, “laborers.” When the first come, what does He call them, (verse 13), “friend.” Missed that subtle point didn’t you?
  • The truth is that there is MUCH to gain from living a life working for the Good Master. The Lord of lords and the King of kings. Above all, you are a friend of God. A companion. Near to Him and Isaiah 40, Isaiah 62 and Revelation 22 all tell us that, “His reward is with Him.” A new heart. A clean heart. A right spirit.


  • The strength of agape love floods your heart, soul, mind and strength and your capacity of thought, endurance and might is that of a thousand men. Power is also His reward. Power over the temporal circumstance of the day. Power of self-control and ability to bring peace, because you have peace…A sound mind is also His reward…to see things as He sees them…to perceive truth and the reality of whatever or whomever it is you’re facing…on top of all that…joy, endurance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentlenessto be called “friend” by Yahweh, there is no more rewarding a life.

Matthew Chapter 20 Verse 16

  • To say the last first and the first last is a bit of a play on words…it’s simply to proclaim equality…and then Jesus says something that is repeated several times in the scriptures, “Many are called, but few are chosen.” Now here’s the thing, all of mankind has a common call…Jesus died for the sins of the world John 3:16 tells us…but few listen to that call, few hear…and few respond.
  • 1 Peter 1says this, “Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ. To the pilgrims…and the elect (chosen) according to the foreknowledge of God the Father…” This idea of God choosing only a select few is actually a half idea…He chooses those who chose Him.
  • Now what’s an even crazier awesomer idea is this…Jesus was the chosenand He traded places with us…the thought is this…He owned the title. The office of chosen was His and He gave it to us so that we could be the very elect of God. The elders and the Romans stood by as Jesus was on the cross and in Luke 23:35 we read, “And the people stood looking on. But even the rulers with them sneered, saying, “He saved others; let Him save Himself if He is the Christ, the chosen of God.”” He was indeed…and He gave His life so that we could hear the call of God directly, and become the chosen.

Matthew Chapter 20 Verses 17 – 19

  • Was this impulsive? Was it random? That Jesus would pull the twelve aside and tell them again what is about to happen? No. Mark tells us that the disciples were amazed and afraid. Afraid because they knew what would happen if Jesus set foot in Jerusalem…and amazed because Jesus was out in front, leading them there…His courage towards the will of God…
  • And so He fully prepares them by telling them what is about to happen and just like them, we hear all of the danger but did you miss the last sentence? Yes all these things are going to take place…but on the third day, I’ll be back! HA!
  • Yes God’s will is going to take you through the valley of the shadow of death, yes it’s difficult, hard, uncomfortable, you get the short end of the stick most of the time, curcumstantially…yes there’s suffering, but don’t forget, when you’re telling someone about your problems with your wife, with your husband, with your boss, with your kids, don’t forget to talk about the coming deliverance of God…because if you do it His way, sorrow may last for a night, joy comes in the morning…why? Because God can’t lie, and He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him!


Matthew Chapter 20 Verses 20 – 21

  • This is so often my question…what their question should have been is, “How can we serve You in Your coming kingdom.” And I ask myself am I asking to sit next to God in His Kingdom, in His power, in His blessings, in His promises and yet I am not actually honoring Him…?


Matthew Chapter 20 Verses 22 – 23

  • Now this is a prophecy of sorts by Jesus because James was actually the first martyr of the twelve in the Book of Acts. He did drink the cup that Jesus was about to drink…and John, although he outlived all of the others, he was baptized…remember…in hot oil…

Matthew Chapter 20 Verses 24 – 28

  • Jesus just loves His boys…it’s scriptures like these when I feel such warmth coming from Him…whybecause they are being such idiots! HA! Two of them are asking for honor rather than earning honor and the rest of them are hating the two for it when they’d like to do the same thing! HA! So typical of us…this sort of righteous indignation when they themselves were thinking the same thing…HA!
  • And so like a loving Father he gives them truth…the path of greatness is through service. And the path of honor in the kingdom of God is service towards others…why? Because when we are serving others, we are actually serving God. Identifying with His heart…this world “slave” is doulos…it means, “devoted to another to the disregard of one’s own interest.” Precisely what Jesus put on display on Calvary’s cross. We have to consider that…we have to get that…and the sooner we do…the sooner joy comes as we empty the trash and visit folks in the hospital and serve at memorial services and teach the kiddos in the nursery and so on….


Matthew Chapter 20 Verses 29 – 34

  • I love this scene…Jesus’ fate lays ahead of Him. His death. His murder. His shame. His unfair trial. His abuse. And who is the enemy that brings this horror? Mankind. And yet He stands still, filled with compassion at the persistent call of these enemies…isn’t that just amazing…He is so not like me…so much higher…
  • And the multitude tells them to shut it…warning them…telling them to stop being so outrageous for this Jesus…and if they had listened…they’d still be there on the side of the road…I’d still be a drug addict. I’d be divorced. I’d be a dead beat dad…I’d be in prison most likely…but they didn’t listen to the world, they listened to Jesus...He called them, they chose Him (Mark says they threw aside their beggar’s garments)…and they were healed…and what do healed people do? They follow Jesus…