1 One day when Jesus was teaching the people in the Temple and proclaiming the good news, the chief priests and the teachers of the Law came with the elders of the Jews, 2 and said to him, “Tell us, what right have you to act like this? Who gives you authority to do all this?”
3 Jesus said to them, “I also will ask you a question; tell me: 4 Was John’s preaching and baptism a work of God, or was it merely something human?” 5 And they argued among themselves, “If we answer that it was a work of God, he will say: ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ 6 But if we answer that it was merely something human, all the people will stone us, for they all regard John as a prophet.” 7 So they answered Jesus, “We don’t know,” 8and Jesus said to them, “Neither will I tell you what right I have to act like this.”
The murderous tenants
(Mk 12:1; Mt 21:33)
• 9 Jesus went on to tell the people this parable, “A man planted a vineyard and let it out to tenants before going abroad for a long time.
10 In due time he sent a servant to the tenants to get some fruit from the vineyard. But the tenants beat him and sent him back empty-handed. 11Again the man sent another servant; they beat him as well and treated him shamefully and finally sent him away empty-handed. 12 The owner then sent a third, but this one was wounded and thrown out.
13 The owner then thought: ‘What shall I do? I will send my beloved son; surely they will respect him.’ 14 The tenants, however, as soon as they had seen him, said to one another: ‘This is the one who will inherit the vineyard; let us kill him and the property will be ours.’ 15 So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. 16 Now, what will the owner of the vineyard do to them? He will come and destroy those tenants and give the vineyard to others.”
On hearing this, some of the rulers said, “May it not be so!” 17 Then Jesus looked directly at them and said, “What does this text of the Scriptures mean: The stone which the builders rejected has become the keystone. 18 Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces and anyone the stone falls on will be crushed?”
19 The teachers of the Law and the chief priests would have liked to arrest him right there, for they realized that Jesus meant this parable for them, but they were afraid of the crowd. 20 So they left, looking for another opportunity.
Paying taxes to Caesar
(Mk 12:13; Mt 22:15)
They sent spies who pretended to be honest, in order to trap him in his words and deliver him to the authority and power of the Roman governor. 21 They asked him, “Master, we know that you are true in your words and your teaching, and your answers do not vary according to who is listening to you, for you truly teach the way of God. Tell us: 22 are we allowed to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”
23 But Jesus saw through their cunning and said, 24 “Show me a silver coin. Whose head is this and whose title does it bear?” They answered, “Caesar’s.” 25 And Jesus said to them “Return to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.”
26 So they were unable to trap him in what he said in public: they were surprised at his answer and kept silent.
Resurrection of the dead
• 27 Then some Sadducees arrived. These people claim that there is no resurrection 28 and they asked Jesus this question, “Master, in the Scripture Moses told us: ‘If anyone dies leaving a wife but no children, his brother must take the wife, and the child to be born will be regarded as the child of the deceased man.’ 29 Now, there were seven brothers; the first married a wife, but he died without children; 30 and the second 31 and the third took the wife; in fact all seven died leaving no children. 32 Last of all the woman died. 33 On the day of the resurrection, to which of them will the woman be wife? For the seven had her as wife.”
34 And Jesus replied, “Taking husband or wife is proper to people of this world, 35 but for those who are considered worthy of the world to come and of resurrection from the dead, there is no more marriage. 36 Besides, they cannot die for they are like the angels. They too are sons and daughters of God because they are born of the resurrection.
37 Yes, the dead will be raised, and even Moses implied it in the passage about the burning bush, where he calls the Lord the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob. 38 For he is God of the living and not of the dead, and for him all are alive.”
39 Some teachers of the Law then agreed with Jesus, “Master, you have spoken well.” 40 They didn’t dare to ask him anything else. 41 Then Jesus said to them, “How can people say that the Messiah is the son of David? 42 For David says in the book of Psalms: The Lord said to my Lord: Sit at my right 43 until I put your enemies under your feet. 44 David here calls him Lord; how then can he be his son?”
• 45 Jesus also said to his disciples before all the people, 46 “Beware of these teachers of the Law who like to be seen in long robes and love to be greeted in the marketplaces and to take the reserved seats in the synagogues and places of honor at feasts. 47 They even devour the property of widows while making a show of long prayers. They will receive a very severe sentence!”
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