Gospel text (Mt 21,33-43.45-46): Jesus said to the chief priests and elders, «Listen to another example: There was a landowner who planted a vineyard. He put a fence around it, dug a hole for the winepress, built a watchtower, leased the vineyard to tenants and then went to a distant country. When harvest time came, the landowner sent his servants to the tenants to collect his share of the harvest. But the tenants seized his servants, beat one, killed another and stoned another. Again the owner sent more servants, but they were treated in the same way. Finally, he sent his son, thinking: ‘They will respect my son’. But when the tenants saw the son, they thought: ‘This is the one who is to inherit the vineyard. Let us kill him and his inheritance will be ours’. So they seized him, threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. Now, what will the owner of the vineyard do with the tenants when he comes?».
They said to him, «He will bring those evil to an evil end, and lease the vineyard to others who will pay him in due time». And Jesus replied, «Have you never read what the Scriptures say?: ‘The stone which the builders rejected has become the keystone. This was the Lord's doing; and we marvel at it’. Therefore I say to you: the kingdom of heaven will be taken from you and given to a people who will yield a harvest».
When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard these parables, they realized that Jesus was referring to them. They would have arrested him, but they were afraid of the crowd who regarded him as a prophet.