In today’s reading, Jesus spoke in parables about a man who built a vineyard and let it out to a husbandman to care and nurture, soon after, he went to a far country. After a period of time, he sent his servants to the husbandman during the season of fruiting in order to partake of the fruit of the vineyard but his servants were harassed and treated unfairly severally. Seeing how his servants were mistreated, he sent his son to receive the tribute with the hope he would be reverenced but they conspired and killed his heir.
Jesus ended the parable saying the owner of the vineyard would destroy the husband man and give the vineyard to another.
The Pharisees and Sadducees later came to him tempting him with questions. The Pharisees asked whether they ought to pay tribute to Caesar or not while the Sadducees asked him if there would be marriage in heaven citing an example of a woman with seven husbands on earth. Jesus answered both with great wisdom telling them to give unto Caesar what was Caesar’s and to God what was God. He also explained to the Sadducees that God is the God of the living and not the dead.
We need to realize that all we have was firstly given to us. There is a need to walk in the understanding that we will give account of all God has blessed us with, hence the need for us to be willing to share part of what we have received. When we face difficult circumstances or boxed into a corner with hard choices, we need to rely and depend on the wisdom of God in those challenging situations.
While the Pharisees felt they were being robbed by the government into paying taxes, many also feel that way today especially when the taxes are huge. We however need to realize that whether it concerns paying taxes or tithes, we have got the strength of God to walk in obedience.
I have the wisdom and strength that I need in all things.
Reading – Mark 12:1-27
The Parable of the Tenants
12 Jesus then began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a pit for the winepress and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and moved to another place. 2 At harvest time he sent a servant to the tenants to collect from them some of the fruit of the vineyard. 3 But they seized him, beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 4 Then he sent another servant to them; they struck this man on the head and treated him shamefully. 5 He sent still another, and that one they killed. He sent many others; some of them they beat, others they killed.
6 “He had one left to send, a son, whom he loved. He sent him last of all, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’
7 “But the tenants said to one another, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.’ 8 So they took him and killed him, and threw him out of the vineyard.
9 “What then will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and kill those tenants and give the vineyard to others. 10 Haven’t you read this passage of Scripture:
“‘The stone the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone;
11 the Lord has done this,
and it is marvelous in our eyes’[a]?”
12 Then the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders looked for a way to arrest him because they knew he had spoken the parable against them. But they were afraid of the crowd; so they left him and went away.
Paying the Imperial Tax to Caesar
13 Later they sent some of the Pharisees and Herodians to Jesus to catch him in his words. 14 They came to him and said, “Teacher, we know that you are a man of integrity. You aren’t swayed by others, because you pay no attention to who they are; but you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. Is it right to pay the imperial tax[b] to Caesar or not? 15 Should we pay or shouldn’t we?”
But Jesus knew their hypocrisy. “Why are you trying to trap me?” he asked. “Bring me a denarius and let me look at it.” 16 They brought the coin, and he asked them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?”
“Caesar’s,” they replied.
17 Then Jesus said to them, “Give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.”
And they were amazed at him.
Marriage at the Resurrection
18 Then the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to him with a question.19 “Teacher,” they said, “Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies and leaves a wife but no children, the man must marry the widow and raise up offspring for his brother.20 Now there were seven brothers. The first one married and died without leaving any children. 21 The second one married the widow, but he also died, leaving no child. It was the same with the third. 22 In fact, none of the seven left any children. Last of all, the woman died too. 23 At the resurrection[c] whose wife will she be, since the seven were married to her?”
24 Jesus replied, “Are you not in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God? 25 When the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven. 26 Now about the dead rising—have you not read in the Book of Moses, in the account of the burning bush, how God said to him, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’[d]? 27 He is not the God of the dead, but of the living. You are badly mistaken!”
- Mark 12:11 Psalm 118:22,23
- Mark 12:14 A special tax levied on subject peoples, not on Roman citizens
- Mark 12:23 Some manuscripts resurrection, when people rise from the dead,
- Mark 12:26 Exodus 3:6
All scriptural passages are taken from the NIV version of the bible.