A Holy Mic Drop

Perhaps you've seen the cheesy commercial where actor and Verizon spokesman, Thomas Middleditch, drops several microphones as he introduces Verizon's new Unlimited Data Plan.  The joke, directed at Verizon's competitors ends up being on Middleditch as his mic drops fail to produce the intended "impact" as they silently land on the carpet. 

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This weeks Gospel could very well have been an actual mic drop moment:      

Jesus said to the chief priests and the elders of the people:  "Hear another parable.  There was a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a hedge around it, dug a wine press in it, and built a tower.  Then he leased it to tenants and went on a journey.  When vintage time drew near, he sent his servants to the tenants to obtain his produce.  But the tenants seized the servants and one they beat, another they killed, and a third they stoned.  Again he sent other servants, more numerous than the first ones, but they treated them in the same way.  Finally, he sent his son to them, thinking,  'They will respect my son.'  But when the tenants saw the son, they said to one another, 'This is the heir.  Come, let us kill him and acquire his inheritance.'  They seized him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him.  What will the owner of the vineyard do to those tenants when he comes?"  They answered him, "He will put those wretched men to a wretched death and lease his vineyard to other tenants who will give him the produce at the proper times." Jesus said to them, "Did you never read in the Scriptures:  The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; by the Lord has this been done, and it is wonderful in our eyes?  Therefore, I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people that will produce its fruit."  Matthew 21:33-43

In this dialogue Jesus takes the lead in the questioning of the chief priests and elders instead of the other way around.  Jesus' parable and subsequent question is ripe with messages that the chief priests and elders miss.  They obviously do not recognize Jesus as the son of the vineyard owner.  Nor do they realize that their answer to the parable question ends up condemning their own behavior.  Jesus follows that up with another question that references the cornerstone from their beloved Scriptures (Psalm 118:22-23).  And in so doing Jesus clarifies His message and thus condemns the "wretched men."         

Much like a comedian who drops the mic on a heckler, Jesus has the last word.  The question this raises for you and me is are we producing fruit for the kingdom of God?