Jewish Leaders Question Jesus(A)
20 One day Jesus was in the Temple, teaching the people and ·telling them the Good News [preaching the Gospel]. The ·leading [T chief] priests, ·teachers of the law [scribes], and elders came up to talk with him, 2 saying, “Tell us what authority you have to do these things? [L Or] Who gave you this authority?”
3 Jesus answered, “I will also ask you a question. Tell me: 4 When John baptized people, was that authority from ·God [L heaven; C a reverent Jewish way of referring to God] or just from ·other people [human beings]?”
5 They ·argued about this [L discussed this among themselves], saying, “If we answer, ‘John’s baptism was from ·God [L heaven],’ Jesus will say, ‘Then why did you not believe him?’ 6 But if we say, ‘It was from ·other people [human beings],’ all the people will stone us to death, because they ·believe [are convinced that] John was a prophet.” 7 So they answered that they didn’t know where it came from.
8 Jesus said to them, “Then I won’t tell you what authority I have to do these things.”
The Story of the Evil Farmers(B)
9 Then Jesus ·told [L began/proceeded to tell] the people this ·story [parable]: “A man planted a vineyard and leased it to some [C tenant] farmers [C Jesus builds on Is. 5:1–7; the owner represents God; the farmers are Israel’s religious leaders]. Then he ·went away [took a journey] for a long time. 10 ·When it was time for the grapes to be picked [L At the (harvest) time], he sent a ·servant [slave] to the farmers to get some of the grapes [C the portion of the harvest to pay the rent]. But they beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 11 Then he sent another ·servant [slave]. They beat him also, and ·showed no respect for [humiliated; dishonored] him, and sent him away empty-handed. 12 So the man sent a third. The farmers wounded him and threw him out [C the servants represent the prophets God sent to Israel]. 13 The owner of the vineyard said, ‘What will I do now? I will send my son whom I love [C representing Jesus; see 3:22]. ·Maybe [or Probably; or Surely] they will respect him.’ 14 But when the farmers saw the son, they said to each other, ‘This ·son will inherit the vineyard [L is the heir]. Let’s kill him so the inheritance will be ours.’ 15 So the farmers threw the son out of the vineyard and killed him.
“What will the ·owner [lord] of the vineyard do to them? 16 He will come and ·kill [destroy] those farmers and will give the vineyard to ·other farmers [L others; C referring to the sinners who were responding to Jesus’ call for repentance, and eventually to the Gentiles who would be saved].”
When the people heard this ·story [parable], they said, “·Let this never happen [T God forbid; L May it not happen]!”
17 But Jesus looked [directly; intently] at them and said, “Then what does this Scripture passage mean:
‘The stone that the builders rejected
became the ·cornerstone [or capstone; or keystone; L head of the corner]’? [C This is the most important stone in the building; Jesus is the rejected stone; Ps. 118:22.]
19 The ·teachers of the law [scribes] and the ·leading [T chief] priests ·wanted [tried/sought] to ·arrest [seize; L lay hands on] Jesus at once, because they knew the ·story [parable] was ·about [told against] them. But they were afraid of what the people would do.
Is It Right to Pay Taxes or Not?(C)
20 So they watched Jesus and sent some spies who acted as if they were ·sincere [honest; righteous]. They wanted to trap Jesus in saying something wrong so they could hand him over to the ·authority [jurisdiction; rule] and ·power [authority] of the governor. 21 So the spies asked Jesus, “Teacher, we know that what you say and teach is ·true [right; correct]. You ·pay no attention to who people are [play no favorites; are impartial; aren’t swayed by appearances], and you always teach ·the truth [with sincerity/honesty] about God’s way. 22 Tell us, is it ·right [permissible; lawful] for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?” [C Saying yes would anger Jews who hated Roman rule; saying no could result in being charged with insurrection.]
23 But Jesus, knowing ·they were trying to trick him [L their craftiness/duplicity], said, 24 “Show me a ·coin [L denarius]. Whose ·image [likeness; portrait] and ·name [inscription; title] are on it?”
They said, “Caesar’s.” [C Ironically, the religious leaders carry coins bearing the idolatrous image of Caesar.]
25 Jesus said to them, “Then ·give [give back; T render] to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and ·give [give back; T render] to God the things that are God’s.”
26 So they were not able to ·trap [catch] Jesus in anything he said in the presence of the people. And being amazed at his answer, they ·became silent [kept quiet].
Some Sadducees Try to Trick Jesus(D)
27 Some Sadducees, who believed people would not rise from the dead, came to Jesus. 28 They asked, “Teacher, Moses wrote that if a man’s brother dies and leaves a wife but no children, then that man must marry the widow and ·have children [L raise up offspring/seed] for his brother [Deut. 25:5–6]. 29 Once there were seven brothers. The first brother ·married [L took a wife] and died, but had no children. 30 Then the second brother married the widow, and he died. 31 And the third brother married the widow, and he died. The same thing happened with all seven brothers; they died and had no children. 32 Finally, the woman died also. 33 Since all seven brothers had married her, whose wife will she be ·when people rise from the dead [L at the resurrection]?”
34 Jesus said to them, “·On earth, people [L The children of this age] marry and are given to someone to marry. 35 But those who will be worthy ·to be raised from the dead and live again [L of the age to come and the resurrection] will not marry, nor will they be given to someone to marry. 36 [L For] In that life they are ·like [or equal to] angels and cannot die. They are children of God, because they ·have been raised from the dead [are children of the resurrection]. 37 Even Moses clearly showed that the dead are raised to life. When he wrote about the burning bush [Ex. 3:1–12], he said that the Lord is ‘the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob [Ex. 3:6; C God is still the God of the patriarchs, so they must have a continued existence after death].’ 38 God is the God of the living, not the dead, because all people are alive to him.”
39 Some of the ·teachers of the law [scribes] said, “Teacher, ·your answer was good [well said!].” 40 No one ·was brave enough [dared] to ask him another question.
Is the Christ the Son of David?(E)
41 Then Jesus said, “Why do people say that the ·Christ [Messiah] is the Son of David [2 Sam. 7:12–16]? 42 [L For; Since] In the book of Psalms, David himself says:
‘The Lord said to my Lord,
“Sit by me at my right ·side [L hand],
43 until I put your enemies ·under your control [L as a footstool for your feet; C meaning defeated or made subject to your authority; Ps. 110:1].”’
44 David calls ·the Christ [the Messiah; L him] ‘Lord,’ so how can ·the Christ [the Messiah; L he] be his son?”
Jesus Accuses Some Leaders(F)
45 While all the people were listening, Jesus said to his ·followers [disciples], 46 “Beware of the ·teachers of the law [scribes]. They like to walk around wearing ·fancy clothes [or flowing robes], and they love for people to greet them with respect in the marketplaces. They love to have the most important seats in the synagogues [11:43] and [the place of highest honor] at ·feasts [banquets]. 47 But they ·cheat widows and steal their houses [L devour widows’ homes] and ·then try to make themselves look good by saying [L with false motives pray] long prayers. They will receive a greater ·punishment [condemnation].”