But when the first came
Who were early hired into the vineyard; and design either the first saints that were in the world; or the Jews that first believed in Christ, either really or nominally; or such, who were called by grace in their early days:
or "hoped", as the Syriac version renders it,
that they should have received more;
than a penny, a greater reward: not that they could expect it on the foot of their agreement, or on account of their work; but because they observed, that they that came last into the vineyard, had as much as they agreed for; and therefore hoped, from the goodness of their Lord to them, that they should receive more:
and they likewise received every man a penny;
the selfsame privileges of the Gospel, and a title to the selfsame reward of free grace, the selfsame glory and happiness.