Matthew 21:41
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
"He will bring those wretches to a wretched end," they replied, "and he will rent the vineyard to other tenants, who will give him his share of the crop at harvest time."

New Living Translation
The religious leaders replied, "He will put the wicked men to a horrible death and lease the vineyard to others who will give him his share of the crop after each harvest."

English Standard Version
They said to him, “He will put those wretches to a miserable death and let out the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the fruits in their seasons.”

Berean Study Bible
"He will bring those wretches to a wretched end," they declared, "and will rent out the vineyard to other tenants who will give him his fruits in their seasons."

Berean Literal Bible
They say to him, "He will destroy them, the wretches, grievously, and he will rent out the vineyard to other farmers who will give to him the fruits in their seasons."

New American Standard Bible
They said to Him, "He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, and will rent out the vineyard to other vine-growers who will pay him the proceeds at the proper seasons."

King James Bible
They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
He will completely destroy those terrible men," they told Him, "and lease his vineyard to other farmers who will give him his produce at the harvest."

International Standard Version
They told him, "He will put those horrible men to a horrible death. Then he will lease the vineyard to other farmers who will give him his produce at harvest time."

NET Bible
They said to him, "He will utterly destroy those evil men! Then he will lease the vineyard to other tenants who will give him his portion at the harvest."

New Heart English Bible
They told him, "He will miserably destroy those miserable men, and will lease out the vineyard to other farmers, who will give him the fruit in its season."

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
They said to him, “He will ruthlessly destroy them and he will give the care of the vineyard to other laborers, who will give him the fruits in their season.”

GOD'S WORD® Translation
They answered, "He will destroy those evil people. Then he will lease the vineyard to other workers who will give him his share of the produce when it is ready."

New American Standard 1977
They said to Him, “He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, and will rent out the vineyard to other vine-growers, who will pay him the proceeds at the proper seasons.”

Jubilee Bible 2000
They say unto him, He will destroy those wicked men without mercy and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen who shall render him the fruits in their seasons.

King James 2000 Bible
They said unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard unto other tenants, who shall render him the fruits in their seasons.

American King James Version
They say to him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard to other farmers, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.

American Standard Version
They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those miserable men, and will let out the vineyard unto other husbandmen, who shall render him the fruits in their seasons.

Douay-Rheims Bible
They say to him: He will bring those evil men to an evil end; and will let out his vineyard to other husbandmen, that shall render him the fruit in due season.

Darby Bible Translation
They say to him, He will miserably destroy those evil [men], and let out the vineyard to other husbandmen, who shall render him the fruits in their seasons.

English Revised Version
They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those miserable men, and will let out the vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.

Webster's Bible Translation
They say to him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard to other husbandmen, who will render him the fruits in their seasons.

Weymouth New Testament
"He will put the wretches to a wretched death," was the reply, "and will entrust the vineyard to other vine-dressers who will render the produce to him at the vintage season."

World English Bible
They told him, "He will miserably destroy those miserable men, and will lease out the vineyard to other farmers, who will give him the fruit in its season."

Young's Literal Translation
They say to him, 'Evil men -- he will evilly destroy them, and the vineyard will give out to other husbandmen, who will give back to him the fruits in their seasons.'
Study Bible
The Parable of the Wicked Tenants
40Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard returns, what will he do to those tenants?” 41“He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, they declared, “and will rent out the vineyard to other tenants who will give him his fruits in their seasons.” 42Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. This is from the Lord, and it is marvelous in our eyes’ ?…
Cross References
Matthew 8:11
I say to you that many will come from the east and the west to share the banquet with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 21:34
When the harvest time drew near, he sent his servants to the tenants to collect his share of the crop.

Matthew 21:40
Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard returns, what will he do to those tenants?"

Luke 20:16
He will come and kill those tenants, and will give the vineyard to others." And when the people heard this, they said, "May such a thing never happen!"

Acts 13:46
Then Paul and Barnabas answered them boldly: "It was necessary to speak the word of God to you first. But since you reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles.

Acts 18:6
But when they opposed and insulted him, he shook out his garments and told them, "Your blood be on your own heads! I am innocent of it. From now on I will go to the Gentiles."

Acts 28:28
Be advised, therefore, that God's salvation has been sent to the Gentiles, and they will listen!"
Treasury of Scripture

They say to him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard to other farmers, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.

they say. Our Lord here causes them to pass that sentence of destruction upon themselves which was literally executed about forty years afterwards by the Roman armies.

He will.

Matthew 3:12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, …

Matthew 22:6,7 And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, …

Matthew 23:35-38 That on you may come all the righteous blood shed on the earth…

Matthew 24:21,22 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning …

Leviticus 26:14 But if you will not listen to me, and will not do all these commandments;

Deuteronomy 28:59-68 Then the LORD will make your plagues wonderful, and the plagues of …

Psalm 2:4,5,9 He that sits in the heavens shall laugh: the LORD shall have them in derision…

Isaiah 5:5-7 And now go to; I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard: I will …

Daniel 9:26 And after three score and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but …

Zechariah 11:8-10 Three shepherds also I cut off in one month; and my soul loathed …

Zechariah 12:12 And the land shall mourn, every family apart; the family of the house …

Zechariah 13:8 And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, said the LORD, two …

Zechariah 14:2,3 For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the …

Malachi 4:1-6 For, behold, the day comes, that shall burn as an oven; and all the …

Luke 17:32-37 Remember Lot's wife…

Luke 19:41-44 And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it…

Luke 21:22-24 For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written …

1 Thessalonians 2:16 Forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they might be saved, …

Hebrews 2:3 How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the …

Hebrews 12:25 See that you refuse not him that speaks. For if they escaped not …

and will let out.

Matthew 21:43 Therefore say I to you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, …

Matthew 8:11 And I say to you, That many shall come from the east and west, and …

Isaiah 49:5-7 And now, said the LORD that formed me from the womb to be his servant, …

Isaiah 65:15 And you shall leave your name for a curse to my chosen: for the Lord …

Isaiah 66:19-21 And I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape …

Luke 13:28,29 There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you shall see …

Luke 14:23,24 And the lord said to the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, …

Luke 21:24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away …

Acts 13:46-48 Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that …

Acts 15:7 And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose up, and said to …

Acts 18:6 And when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook his raiment, …

Acts 28:8 And it came to pass, that the father of Publius lay sick of a fever …

Romans 9:1-11:36 I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing …

Romans 15:9-18 And that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy; as it is written, …

(41) They say unto him . . .--The fact that the answer to the question came, not from the speaker, but from the hearers of the parable, is peculiar to St. Matthew. On the assumption that those who gave the answer were the scribes and Pharisees, we may see in it either a real unconsciousness that they were as the men on whom the punishment was to fall (see Note on Matthew 21:31), or, more probably, an affected horror, by which they sought to disguise the conviction that the parable was meant for them. They would not admit, in the presence of the multitude, that they winced at this intimation that their designs were known.

Those wicked men.--Better, those miserable men, the adjective being the same as the preceding adverb. Their answer, like the speech of Caiaphas in John 11:49-51, was an unconscious prophecy, in which were wrapt up at once the destruction of the Holy City, and the transfer of the privileges that had belonged to Israel to the Gentile Church, which was to grow into Catholic Christendom. The Lord of the vineyard would not be robbed of its fruits, and sooner or later would find faithful and true labourers.

Verse 41. - They say unto him. The Pharisees probably made the reply, not at the moment apprehending the sense of the parable. Or the words were spoken by some of the bystanders, and taken up and emphatically repeated by our Lord with an unmistakable application (ver. 43). The conclusion was a necessary consequence, and this will account for Mark and Luke apparently making them a part of Christ's speech. By their answer they blindly condemn themselves, as David did at hearing Nathan's parable (2 Samuel 12:5). He will miserably (kakw = ) destroy those wicked men (κακοὺς, miserable men); or, he will evilly destroy those evil men; Vulgate, Malos male perdet. He will make their punishment equal their crime. The slaughter and mortality at the siege of Jerusalem accomplished this prediction to the letter. Unto other husbandmen; i.e. the Christian ministry, which took the place of the Jewish priests and teachers. As the husbandmen in the parable were rather the rulers and rabbis than the whole nation (which, indeed, only followed their guides), so these others are not the whole Gentile world, but those who sustained the ministerial offices in the Christian Church. Which (οἵτινες); of such kind as, denoting a class of servants. The clause is peculiar to Matthew. The speakers did not clearly apprehend the bearing of this detail of the parable. In their seasons. The times when the various fruits are ripe and ready for harvesting. These would vary in different climates and under differing circumstances; but the good husbandmen would be always ready to render to their Lord the fruits of faith and obedience, at every holy season and in due proportion. This parable, spoken originally of Israel, applies, like all such similitudes, to the Christian Church and to the human soul. How God dealt with individual Churches we see in his words to the seven Churches of Asia (Revelation 1-3.). Ecclesiastical history furnishes similar examples throughout all ages. God gives privileges, and looks for results worthy of these graces. He sends warnings; he raises up apostles, preachers, evangelists; and if a Church is still unfaithful, he takes away his Spirit, and lets it lapse, and gives its inheritance to others, In the other case, the vineyard is the soul of man, which he has to cultivate for his Master's use. God has hedged it round with the law, external and internal, given it the ministry and sacraments and the Scripture, and looks to it to bring forth the fruits of obedience, service, worship. He sends times of visitation, teaching, warning; he speaks to it by secret inspiration; he calls it in loving tones to closer union. If it hearkens to the call, it walks in the way of salvation; if it refuses to hear, it casts away the hope of its calling, and must share the lot of Christ's enemies. They say unto him,.... Either the common people that were about him; or rather the chief priests, scribes, and elders, to whom he put the question; little thinking then, that they were the persons intended in this parable:

he will miserably destroy those wicked men: in saying which, they own that persons guilty of such crimes, as beating, killing, and stoning, servants sent to them by the proprietor of the vineyard, to receive his due and proper fruit, and at last murdering his son and heir, were very wicked persons, and deserved the severest punishments to be inflicted upon them, and that without mercy; nor could it be thought, but this must and would be unavoidably their case, when the Lord of the vineyard should come: thus tacitly did they condemn themselves as wicked men, and as deserving the worst of deaths, who in a few days after this, were concerned in the death of the Son of God:

and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen; allowing it to be a very just thing, not only to put these men to the most miserable and tormenting death that could be devised, but to take the vineyard out of the hands of their posterity, and let it out to other persons; as it was a righteous thing with God, to remove the church state, Gospel and ordinances from the Jews, and deliver them to the Gentiles:

which shall render him the fruits in their seasons; that is, his due, and that in proper time. The other evangelists relate these words, as spoken by Christ: for the reconciliation of which let it be observed, that they were first spoken by the Jews, as is here signified; and after that were spoken by Christ, confirming what they said, and applying it to them; upon which they said, "God forbid"; that we should ever be guilty of such crimes, incur such punishment, and this should be our case: but in proof of it, that so it would be, our Lord alleges the following words. 41. They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men—an emphatic alliteration not easily conveyed in English: "He will badly destroy those bad men," or "miserably destroy those miserable men," is something like it.

and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons—If this answer was given by the Pharisees, to whom our Lord addressed the parable, they thus unwittingly pronounced their own condemnation: as did David to Nathan the prophet (2Sa 12:5-7), and Simon the Pharisee to our Lord (Lu 7:43, etc.). But if it was given, as the two other Evangelists agree in representing it, by our Lord Himself, and the explicitness of the answer would seem to favor that supposition, then we can better explain the exclamation of the Pharisees which followed it, in Luke's report (Lu 20:16)—"And when they heard it, they said, God forbid"—His whole meaning now bursting upon them.21:33-46 This parable plainly sets forth the sin and ruin of the Jewish nation; and what is spoken to convict them, is spoken to caution all that enjoy the privileges of the outward church. As men treat God's people, they would treat Christ himself, if he were with them. How can we, if faithful to his cause, expect a favourable reception from a wicked world, or from ungodly professors of Christianity! And let us ask ourselves, whether we who have the vineyard and all its advantages, render fruits in due season, as a people, as a family, or as separate persons. Our Saviour, in his question, declares that the Lord of the vineyard will come, and when he comes he will surely destroy the wicked. The chief priests and the elders were the builders, and they would not admit his doctrine or laws; they threw him aside as a despised stone. But he who was rejected by the Jews, was embraced by the Gentiles. Christ knows who will bring forth gospel fruits in the use of gospel means. The unbelief of sinners will be their ruin. But God has many ways of restraining the remainders of wrath, as he has of making that which breaks out redound to his praise. May Christ become more and more precious to our souls, as the firm Foundation and Cornerstone of his church. May we be willing to follow him, though despised and hated for his sake.
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