JesusJesus is the Messiah whose life, death, and resurrection are God's saving act for humanity More enters Jerusalem to the acclaim of those around him. Next he enters the templeThe Jerusalem temple, unlike the tabernacle, was a permanent structure, although (like the tabernacle) it was a place of worship and religious activity. On one occasion Jesus felt such activity was unacceptable and, as reported in all four Gospels, drove from the temple those engaged... More, where he teaches and disputes with various religious authorities who try to entrap him.
Jesus sends his disciples ahead to secure a colt for his entry into Jerusalem. The crowds acclaim him, saying, “Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of our Lord! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our ancestor DavidSecond king of Israel, David united the northern and southern kingdoms. More! Hosanna in the highest heaven!” (11:1-10, with reference to PsalmA psalm is a song of praise. In the Old Testament 150 psalms comprise the psalter, although some of the psalms are laments and thanksgivings. In the New Testament early Christians gathered to sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs. More 118:26 and Zechariah 9:9). Jesus enters the temple, observes, and retreats to Bethany. On his way to the temple a second time he curses a fig tree and arrives at the temple citing the words of the prophets: “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations’? But you have made it a den of robbers” (11:17, with reference to IsaiahIsaiah, son of Amoz, who prophesied in Jerusalem, is included among the prophets of the eighth century B.C.E. (along with Amos, Hosea, and Micah)--preachers who boldly proclaimed God's word of judgment against the economic, social, and religious disorders of their time. More 56:7 and JeremiahProphet who condemned Judah's infidelity to God, warned of Babylonian conquest, and promised a new covenant More 7:11). On his way to the temple a third time the disciples observe that the fig tree has withered to its roots, and Jesus teaches them concerning faith and forgiveness (11:12-26).
Arriving in the temple, the chief priests, scribes, and eldersElders are leaders who exercise wisdom or leadership by virtue of their age and experience. In the New Testament elders, along with the chief priests and scribes, constituted the primary opposition to Jesus when he taught in Jerusalem. More question Jesus on his authority. His response recalls the role of John the BaptistJohn the Baptizer was the forerunner of Jesus the Messiah, preaching a gospel of repentance and preparing the way of the Lord More, whom they have refused to receive as a messenger of God, and thus Jesus refuses to answer their question (11:27-33). The parableA parable is a brief story with a setting, an action, and a result. A prominent aspect of Jesus' teaching was telling parables to illustrate something about the kingdom, or reign, of God. More of the vineyard centers on the beloved son, the one whom the owner finally sends (12:1-12). Jesus concludes the parable by citing Psalm 118:22-23: “Have you not read this scripture: ‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord’s doing, and it is amazing in our eyes’?” (12:10-11). Realizing that the parable has been told against them, the leaders seek to arrest Jesus, but fearing the crowd they leave him (12:12).
The religious leaders next seek to entrap Jesus one by one. The Pharisees are first and ask about paying or not paying taxes to the Roman Emperor. Jesus requests a coin to indicate that this belongs to the Emperor, but their lives belong to God (12:13-17). The Sadducees, who do not believe in resurrection, ask Jesus about the resurrection relationship of a woman who has been married to seven brothers: “In the resurrection whose wife will she be?” (12:18-27). A scribeA scribe is a person paid to write books or documents by hand. In Jesus' time, scribes were credentialed interpreters of Jewish law. Scribes in the New Testament, along with the elders and chief priests, are among Jesus' most committed opponents, although on one occasion... More questions Jesus concerning which commandment is first of all. Jesus responds with the call to love God, citing Deuteronomy 6:4, and a second command about loving one’s neighbor, citing Leviticus 19:18 (12:28-34). No one dares ask Jesus further questions, so now it is his turn to ask a question of them concerning the identity of David’s son: “David himself calls him Lord; so how can he be his son?” (12:35-37). Jesus warns the disciples about the scribes who seek only honor, devour widows’ houses, and make a pretense of prayer (12:38-40). Jesus’ final temple teaching is to note the widowA widow is a woman whose spouse has died, often plunging her into poverty and putting her in a vulnerable position in society. Jesus, in his concern for the poor, regards widows with compassion and concern. More who gives to the temple treasury only two copper coins (12:41-44), noting that as others contribute out of abundance, she contributes “all she had to live on” (12:44), literally, “her entire life.”