Matthew 20:1-16

The Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard

The parable of the workers in the vineyard, as told in Matthew 20:1-16, is one of my favorite parables in the Bible.  For those that don’t know, Jesus often spoke in parables to help his disciples better understand, and remember, what he was teaching them.  I find this true even today, as most of my life I have used analogies and parables when explaining things.  I’ve found that it works really well with the children, especially ours with Asperger’s syndrome.

This parable is about a landowner hiring workers for his vineyard.  The landowner hired workers throughout the day, at different times.  And at the end of the day, the landowner decided to give the same pay to all the workers.  Some had worked all day and some had worked for only an hour.  But at the end of the day, they all received the same reward.

The vineyard represents the Kingdom of Heaven, and we, all of us, represent the workers.  It does not matter whether you grew up knowing the Lord or whether you just met him yesterday;  You still will go to Heaven when you die and be with the Lord.  The workers that came in and only worked for one hour are often referred to as ’11th hour workers’, hence the name of my blog.  Your rewards in Heaven might be different from those that have been serving the Lord all their lives.  But whether you just accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior today, or have known Him all your life, you will still go to Heaven when you die.

I see myself as an ’11th hour worker’ because I was nearly 40 years old before I found the Lord.  My parents did not go to church, nor have any Christian background to teach my sister and me.  I was a teenager when my mother decided to join a Catholic church, so I grew up with very little understanding of who God and Jesus were and what the Bible was all about.  I always worried that people who had a strong Christian upbringing would be held in higher esteem by the Lord.  But through this parable, Jesus was very clear that was not the case!  What a wonderful message from the Lord!


July 16, 2011 - Posted by | My Thoughts and Opinions | , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. i am excited to read your new blogs! 🙂 abd this brings meaning to things i have often wondered about. i have heard that parable before, and even read it in the bible. but i have sometimes questions how is it fair for people who have loved the lord their whole lives, and then people who turn to the lord in the last hours…how is it fair that they would be able to go to heaven after only knowing him or calling out to him, or trusting him, or leaning on him in their desperation at the end…how is it fair to those who have done that their entire lives? this parable spoke to me tonight and helped me to see more clearly the answer to my questions. thanks lisa!

    Comment by Cris | July 19, 2011 | Reply

    • I should have been more specific in the blog that the actual ‘reward’ in Heaven will differ for each person. So while someone saved in their last hour of life still gets to go to Heaven, rest assured that their reward will be far less than someone who knows the Lord, is intimate with him, having developed a relationship over many years. But I think that just the fact that you get to go to Heaven is a great reward considering the alternative! And of course, some people may *think* they are good Christians, attended church all their life, etc., but it’s your actual relationship with God that is important! So even someone who believes their reward in Heaven will be great, if they have not followed the destiny God wanted them to follow, if they sinned a lot, or if they never really go to know God, their reward won’t be that great either. That is why the Bible says their will be a great ‘gnashing of teeth’ come Judgment Day!

      Comment by the11thhourworker | July 20, 2011 | Reply

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