28 Mar. Mark 12:1-12

28 Mar. Jesus tells a story about tenants in a vineyard

"Jesus began to use stories to teach the people. He said, 'A man planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it and dug a hole for a winepress and built a tower. Then he leased the land to some farmers and left for a trip.'”

"'When it was time for the grapes to be picked, he sent a servant to the farmers to get his share of the grapes. But the farmers grabbed the servant and beat him and sent him away empty-handed.'"

"'Then the man sent another servant. They hit him on the head and showed no respect for him. So the man sent another servant whom they killed. The man sent many other servants; the farmers beat some of them, and killed others.'"

"'The man had one person left to send, his son whom he loved. He sent him last of all, saying, "They will respect my son."'"

"'But the farmers said to each other, "This son will inherit the vineyard. If we kill him, it will be ours." So they took the son, killed him and threw him out of the vineyard.'"

"'So what will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and kill those farmers and will give the vineyard to other farmers.'"

"'Surely you have read this Scripture: "The stone that the builders rejected became the cornerstone. The Lord did this, and it is wonderful to us."'"

"The Jewish leaders knew that the story was about them. They wanted to find a way to arrest Jesus, but they were afraid of the people. So the leaders left him and went away."




During the three days before his last Passover supper, Jesus taught the Jewish crowds using lively stories - including a parable about tenants in a vineyard.

In Jesus’s day, vineyards were protected from animals, thieves and strong winds by a sturdy wall or hedge – often strengthened by fig trees. When the vines developed fruit-bearing branches, they were raised above the ground on wooden supports, and pruned each spring to promote new growth.

A watchtower was often built on the highest point to keep a lookout for thieves. The tenants paid the owner by giving him a share of the crop – sometimes as much as half the grapes.

Jesus told how the owner of the vineyard rented it out and went away on a long journey. When he sent a servant to collect his share of the crop, the farmers abused the servant. They killed other servants, and when the owner sent his son, they killed him too.

The Pharisees were furious as they realised that Jesus was telling a story about God (the ‘owner’ of the vineyard), and how the Jewish religious leaders (the ‘farmers’) had killed the prophets sent by God (the ‘servants’) and were plotting to kill Jesus himself (the ‘owner’s son’).

The photo shows a reconstructed vineyard and watchtower at the Neot Kedumim Biblical Landscape Reserve near Lod in Israel.

You can read more about vineyards in Jesus's day @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/…/6-jesuss…/the-last-supper/

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