Mark Chapter 12
Read 1 through 9 . In this story, Jesus wants the Jews to ask themselves whether they are like the vine-growers. They could easily get the point, because in Isaiah 5 : 1 – 7 , God had told another story about a vineyard, and said clearly that the story was about the Israelites ( Jewish People ) . The one who planted the vineyard is God. The ones taking care of the vineyard are the Jewish people, and the vineyard represents all the blessing which God gave to them. The Jewish people were supposed to respond to God’s blessings by giving Him trust and obedience, but most of them did not do it. That is the point made throughout the Old testament. The slaves who came to get something from the vineyard represent the prophets who told the Jewish people to change their ways and turn to God. In the Old Testament, we see that the Jewish people did not listen to these prophets. The son represents Jesus. All the Jews knew that God was planning to send His Son to be their Messiah ( King ) . Jesus is challenging them : when the Son comes, will you accept Him, or will you kill Him ? Jesus already knew that the Jewish leaders were planning to kill Him, so He was warning them that by killing Jesus, they would be rejecting their Messiah and rejecting God’s will. In the light of this story, believers also have wondered whether Jesus was making the same point in Mark 11 : 13 – 14 when He cursed the fig tree. The idea is that God has been very patient with the Jewish people, and given them many blessings, but there has not been any result. Therefore they will lose the blessings which God meant to give them, and these blessings will be given to people who are not Jews. This actually is what happened. Paul made this point in Acts 13 44 – 48 , and added that this was God’s plan right from the beginning, that God’s blessing would be for people of all countries, not only for the Jews. God said this, already in His original promise to Abraham, Genesis 12 : 3 .But that is not the end of the story. Paul said that when the Jews saw that the blessings were being givrn to the non-Jews, this would prompt the Jews to turn back to God again ( see Romans 11 : 11 – 32 ) . When we read this story, we must also ask ourselves ” Am I any different than the Jews ? Am I making a response to all the blessings which God has given to me ? ” If not, how much longer do you think God will wait for me to respond ?
Read 10 to 12 . This Old Testament quote from Psalm 118 : 22 prophisied that the Jewish people would reject their Messiah.
Read 13 . Herodians were Jewish people who supported King Herod. Since they supported King Herod, they would not want to accept another king.
Read 14 to 17 . If Jesus said they should pay the tax, they would say that he supports the Romans, who did not let the Jews have freedom. If Jesus said that they should not pay the tax, they would say that He was breaking the law.
Read 19 . When they said ” Moses wrote ” , they meant that this law is found within the first five books of the Bible . The actual place is Deuteronomy 25 : 5 .
Read 20 to 23 . The reason for their question was to make Jesus admit that it is not logical to believe that people will rise from the dead .
Read 24 and 25 . This place teaches clearly that people will not be married in the next life, so it shows that Mormon teaching is wrong because Mormons say people will be married .
Read 26 and 27 . The quote is from Exodus 3 : 6 . The point is that God said ” am ” , and not ” was “‘ to show that Abraham and the others were alive and living with God .
Read 28 . A scribe ( teacher of the law ) was a Jewish person who knew how to write, and so he would write letters and papers for people .
Read 29 to 31 . These sentences are quotations from the Old testament, from Deuteronomy 6 : 4 – 5 and Leviticus 19 : 18 .
Read 32 to 34 . Jesus complimented the scribe ( teacher of the Law ) because the scribe realized that love is more important than rituals .
Read 35 . God made a promise to King David, who lived 1000 years before Jesus. the promise is found in II Chronicles 17 : 11 and 14. God said that David would have a descendant who would be king forever. We usually call this king ” the Messiah ” . So the teachers of the Law are correct to say that Messiah will be the descendant of King David .
Read 36 . This verse is a quotation from Psalm 101 : 1 . The first word ” Lord ” means God ; the second word ” lord ” means the Messiah is his Lord .
Read 37 . Jesus wanted the people to become curious about this question : which is correct ? Is the Messiah greater than David ( David’s Lord ) or lesser than David ( David’s descendant ) ? Jesus does not give the answer here > He only wants the people to think about it , so they are not sure that they have all the answers . In fact , both statements are true . Jesus is the Lord , so he is over David , but he was born as a descendant of David .
Read 38 to 40 . Here Jesus is warning against people who seem to be religious , because they do religious activities like praying, but actually they are not really believers ; they do bad things and are full of pride .
Read 41 to 44 . Jesus explains that the most important thing about giving is not how much you give, but how much you have sacrificed .