I was going to write this article, but I can’t be bothered... Imagine if that really was the end. You would be deprived of the rest of my contribution. A lazy farmer doesn't suffer alone, his family and the wider community are also impoverished.
The King desires the contribution of all His Citizens. He has watered the soil and cultivated the plant to produce a fruitful people. But this is where, as it were, we must meet Him halfway. He has done all to supply, enable us and now demands a fitting response, a willingness, activity, active citizenship (read James 4:8, Roman 12:1). Isaiah 5:2-4 highlights God’s work and His expectation:
He dug it up and cleared it of stones and planted it with the choicest vines. He built a watchtower in it and cut out a winepress as well. Then he looked for a crop of good grapes, but it yielded only bad fruit.“Now you dwellers in Jerusalem and people of Judah, judge between me and my vineyard. What more could have been done for my vineyard than I have done for it? When I looked for good grapes, why did it yield only bad?
Having done all the legwork and resource and cultivation for His people, God expects a return in keeping with the seed He planted. But Israel like a slothful man did not respond accordingly and failed to produce the culture he was after.
There has been much talk in recent times about the benefit system. Accusations of slothful scroungers and fears of foreigners coming to squeeze the system. Whether the statistics have been blown out of proportion or not, the idea of some pulling their weight whilst others cruise at the expense of the tax payers is abhorrent to most people. I bring out this point to highlight the impact of laziness on a Nation. In the Kingdom laziness goes hand in hand with selfishness and stubbornness.
1. Selfishness; because the individual fails to understand their contribution is not only for their personal benefit but for common wealth (Read 1 Cor 14), and
2. Stubbornness; because laziness opposes the Kings expressed will for productivity and fruitfulness.
'From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and violent men take it by force. - Matthew 11:12
Whether you understand the rest of the verse the last sentence seems quite clear. “Violent /forceful” men lay hold of the Kingdom. This speaks of activity and aggressive desire to acquire a valued treasure. The kingdom is still forcefully advancing and still calls for an active response. It’s funny that some say even in UK today there isn’t a lack of jobs, but a lack of people willing to do certain types of jobs, which the more eager foreigners take (by force as it were). And not before long they to begin to eat the fruit of the land whilst indigenous citizens await handouts. I know that was a gross caricature, but it was just to buttress the point I'm trying to make: That in the Kingdom of God we must fight against laziness like the thief that it is. Because it steals not only from the individual, it robs the Nation of its (common) wealth and denies the King the acceptable and expected produce.