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We have all heard the statement: "Hindsight is 20/20." The insight gained through hindsight frequently resources us to live with foresight. That is why we are going to spend the Fall looking at the Gospel of Mark in reverse. Why is the message about Him called "the Gospel" (from Old English meaning 'good news') and what is the message that is proclaimed?
This weekend we look at a passage frequently quoted: "Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's and render unto God the things that are God's." Why is this incident part of the Good News Mark feels compelled to share?
TODAY'S SCRIPTURE | Mark 12.1-17
And He began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard and put a wall around it, and dug a vat under the wine press and built a tower, and rented it out to vine-growers and went on a journey. 2 At the harvest time he sent a slave to the vine-growers, in order to receive some of the produce of the vineyard from the vine-growers. 3 They took him, and beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 4 Again he sent them another slave, and they wounded him in the head, and treated him shamefully. 5 And he sent another, and that one they killed; and so with many others, beating some and killing others. 6 He had one more to send, a beloved son; he sent him last of all to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ 7 But those vine-growers said to one another, ‘This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and the inheritance will be ours!’ 8 They took him, and killed him and threw him out of the vineyard. 9 What will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and destroy the vine-growers, and will give the vineyard to others. 10 Have you not even read this Scripture:
‘The stone which the builders rejected,
This became the chief corner stone;
11 This came about from the Lord,
And it is marvelous in our eyes’?”
12 And they were seeking to seize Him, and yet they feared the people, for they understood that He spoke the parable against them. And so they left Him and went away.
13 Then they sent some of the Pharisees and Herodians to Him in order to trap Him in a statement. 14 They came and said to Him, “Teacher, we know that You are truthful and defer to no one; for You are not partial to any, but teach the way of God in truth. Is it lawful to pay a poll-tax to Caesar, or not? 15 Shall we pay or shall we not pay?” But He, knowing their hypocrisy, said to them, “Why are you testing Me? Bring Me a denarius to look at.” 16 They brought one. And He said to them, “Whose likeness and inscription is this?” And they said to Him, “Caesar’s.” 17 And Jesus said to them, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” And they were amazed at Him.
Here are some books and resources we recommend for your own reflection and study:
The Weekend Resource Guide can be used for further reflection and is the resource tool that most of our LifeGroups use.
Basic Christianity by John Stott will provide you with insight and understanding whether you are seeking Jesus or have been following Him for years. Thin and profound.
Simply Jesus: A New Vision of Who He Was, What He Did, and Why He Matters is a great introduction into the life of Jesus and how we can relate to Him today.
Reunion: The Good News of Jesus for Seekers, Saints, and Sinners is a dynamic investigation of the most earth-shattering, piety-smashing, life-changing news ever. Discover your true citizenship in the Jesus nation, where you might be ready to die for a cause but never willing to kill for it.
The Hole in Our Gospel Special Edition: What Does God Expect of Us? The Answer That Changed My Life and Might Just Change the World demonstrates that the whole gospel was always meant to be a world-changing, social revolution, a revolution that begins with each one of us.
Who is Jesus is a video produced by Alpha... a GREAT introduction:
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