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FRAMEWORKS: Luke's Gospel

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FRAMEWORKS: Luke's Gospel, Chapter 20


v.1-8 The Authority of Jesus Questioned

v.9-19 The Parable of the Tenants

v.20-26 Paying Taxes to Caesar

v.27-40 The Resurrection and Marriage

v.41-44 Whose Son Is the Messiah?

v.45-47 Warning Against the Teachers of the Law



v.1-8 The Authority of Jesus Questioned


v.1 (Jesus is approached by the religious authorities) One day as Jesus was teaching the people in the temple courts and proclaiming the good news, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, together with the elders, came up to him.

v.2 (they demand to know by what authority he was there) “Tell us by what authority you are doing these things,” they said. “Who gave you this authority?”

v.3 (he poses a question in return) He replied, “I will also ask you a question. Tell me:

v.4 (about who John the Baptist was) John's baptism—was it from heaven, or of human origin?”

v.5,6 (they realise the difficulties) They discussed it among themselves and said, “If we say, ‘From heaven,' he will ask, ‘Why didn't you believe him?' But if we say, ‘Of human origin,' all the people will stone us, because they are persuaded that John was a prophet.”

v.7 (they refuse an answer) So they answered, “We don't know where it was from.”

v.8 (so Jesus refused to answer their question) Jesus said, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.”



v.9-19 The Parable of the Tenants


v.9 (he tells a vineyard parable) He went on to tell the people this parable: “A man planted a vineyard, rented it to some farmers and went away for a long time.

v.10 (having gone away the owner sends servants for rent, who are beaten) At harvest time he sent a servant to the tenants so they would give him some of the fruit of the vineyard. But the tenants beat him and sent him away empty-handed.

v.11 (this is repeated) He sent another servant, but that one also they beat and treated shamefully and sent away empty-handed.

v.12 ( …and a third time) He sent still a third, and they wounded him and threw him out.

v.13 (so he sends his son) “Then the owner of the vineyard said, ‘What shall I do? I will send my son, whom I love; perhaps they will respect him.'

v.14 (they reject him) “But when the tenants saw him, they talked the matter over. ‘This is the heir,' they said. ‘Let's kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.'

v.15 ( …and kill him) So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. “What then will the owner of the vineyard do to them?

v.16 (the owner will kill those tenants) He will come and kill those tenants and give the vineyard to others.” When the people heard this, they said, “God forbid!”

v.17,18 (Jesus parallels it with scripture) Jesus looked directly at them and asked, “Then what is the meaning of that which is written: “‘The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone' [Psa 118:22]? Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces; anyone on whom it falls will be crushed.”

v.19 (the authorities realise he refers to them) The teachers of the law and the chief priests looked for a way to arrest him immediately, because they knew he had spoken this parable against them. But they were afraid of the people.



v.20-26 Paying Taxes to Caesar


v.20 (they send spies to catch him out) Keeping a close watch on him, they sent spies, who pretended to be sincere. They hoped to catch Jesus in something he said, so that they might hand him over to the power and authority of the governor.

v.21 (they appear to praise him) So the spies questioned him: “Teacher, we know that you speak and teach what is right, and that you do not show partiality but teach the way of God in accordance with the truth.

v.22 (but ask about paying taxes to the Romans) Is it right for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”

v.23 (Jesus sees the trap) He saw through their duplicity and said to them,

v.24 (he asks who is on a coin) “Show me a denarius. Whose image and inscription are on it?” “Caesar's,” they replied.

v.25 (give appropriately to Caesar and to God) He said to them, “Then give back to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's.”

v.26 (their trap failed) They were unable to trap him in what he had said there in public. And astonished by his answer, they became silent.



v.27-40 The Resurrection and Marriage


v.27 (Sadducees try next) Some of the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to Jesus with a question.

v.28 (they quote the Law) “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.

v.29-32 (subsequent brothers marry her and then die) Now there were seven brothers. The first one married a woman and died childless. The second and then the third married her, and in the same way the seven died, leaving no children. Finally, the woman died too.

v.33 (so whose wife will she be after the resurrection [which they don't believe in!!!]) Now then, at the resurrection whose wife will she be, since the seven were married to her?”

v.34 (marriage is for this side of death) Jesus replied, “The people of this age marry and are given in marriage.

v.35,36 (beyond death there is no marriage) But those who are considered worthy of taking part in the age to come and in the resurrection from the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage, and they can no longer die; for they are like the angels. They are God's children, since they are children of the resurrection.

v.37 (remember Moses' encounter with God at the burning bush) But in the account of the burning bush, even Moses showed that the dead rise, for he calls the Lord ‘the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.' [Exo 3:6 ]

v.38 (he showed God is God of the living in the present) He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.”

v.39 (some of them recognise the wisdom of this) Some of the teachers of the law responded, “Well said, teacher!”

v.40 (so no more questions were asked of him) And no one dared to ask him any more questions.



v.41-44 Whose Son Is the Messiah?


v.41 (Jesus challenges them about the Messiah) Then Jesus said to them, “Why is it said that the Messiah is the son of David?

v.42 (he cites the psalms) David himself declares in the Book of Psalms: “‘The Lord said to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.”' [Psa 110:1]

v.44 (he is more than merely David's son, that is usually taught) David calls him ‘Lord.' How then can he be his son?”



v.45-47 Warning Against the Teachers of the Law


v.45 (Jesus turned to his disciples) While all the people were listening, Jesus said to his disciples,

v.46 (beware all these pretentious and proud religious people) “Beware of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around in flowing robes and love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and have the most important seats in the synagogues and the places of honour at banquets.

v.47 (they are unjust, religiously showy and will be judged) They devour widows' houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. These men will be punished most severely.”



Continue to Chapter 21