When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they knew that he was speaking about them. And although they were attempting to arrest him, they feared the crowds, for they regarded him as a prophet.
The more familiar I become with the real world in which I live the more familiar becomes the scriptures. Which is to say, "It's political."
Clearly many people regard politics as a game with winners and losers. If they hate the game perhaps they're the losers.
But politics is life; it's how we manage to live with one another in a complicated, dynamic, mysterious and sometimes terrifying world.
Those who see politics as a game see friends and enemies. But if politics is how we live together, it's about the just apportionment of resources and opportunities to everyone.
In today's gospel, the chief priests and Pharisees hear Jesus speaking a hard truth and they fear losing the game. They know only one way to deal with him: arrest, accusations, condemnation and complete removal from the game. If that includes something as cruel and disgusting as crucifixion, so be it.
Jesus speaks fearlessly to these gamers because he knows something they do not: the game is over, God has won. Those who believe that fear nothing.
There will be a just apportionment of resources and opportunities. The only ones who will suffer losses on that day will be those who stood in the way of justice. Clinging to what is useless garbage, they will be cast down with their treasure intact.
But those who stood with Jesus in their poverty will sing, "...by the Lord has this been done, and it is wonderful in our eyes."