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1 And he began to speak unto them by parables. A certain man planted a vineyard, and set an hedge about it , and digged a place for the winefat, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country.
Ver. 1. A certain man planted, &c. ] See Trapp on " Mat 21:33 "
2 And at the season he sent to the husbandmen a servant, that he might receive from the husbandmen of the fruit of the vineyard.
3 And they caught him , and beat him, and sent him away empty.
Ver. 3. And beat him ] Properly, they hild (tanned) him; but by a metonymy, a they beat him. Sic percutimus vulpem, ut pellis ei detrahatur; so men beat a fox that they may the better skin him. ( Δερω proprie excorio, pellem detraho. Gerhard.)
a A figure of speech which consists in substituting for the name of a thing the name of an attribute of it or of something closely related. ŒD
4 And again he sent unto them another servant; and at him they cast stones, and wounded him in the head, and sent him away shamefully handled.
Ver. 4. Wounded him in the head ] Caput comminuerunt, they brake his head. Theophylact interpreteth it, They completed their villany, and spent all their spite upon him ( συνετελεσαν και εκορυφωσαν την υβριν ).
5 And again he sent another; and him they killed, and many others; beating some, and killing some.
6 Having yet therefore one son, his wellbeloved, he sent him also last unto them, saying, They will reverence my son.
Ver. 6. They will reverence my son ] They will surely be ashamed to look him in the face. This is the proper signification of the word εντραπησονται . But sin had woaded a an impudence in their faces, that they could blush no more than a sackbut.
a To dye, colour, or stain with woad, sometimes (in dyeing) as a ground for another colour. ŒD
7 But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be ours.
8 And they took him, and killed him , and cast him out of the vineyard.
9 What shall therefore the lord of the vineyard do? he will come and destroy the husbandmen, and will give the vineyard unto others.
10 And have ye not read this scripture; The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner:
11 This was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?
12 And they sought to lay hold on him, but feared the people: for they knew that he had spoken the parable against them: and they left him, and went their way.
13 And they send unto him certain of the Pharisees and of the Herodians, to catch him in his words.
Ver. 13. To catch him in his words ] As hunters catch the beast in a toil, αγρευσωσι , as fowlers catch the bird in a snare, as St Matthew’s word here signifies ( παγιδευσωσι ).
" Fistula dulce canit, voluerem dum decipit auceps. "
14 And when they were come, they say unto him, Master, we know that thou art true, and carest for no man: for thou regardest not the person of men, but teachest the way of God in truth: Is it lawful to give tribute to Caesar, or not?
Ver. 14. To give tribute ] This tribute the Jews then paid to the Romans as now they do to the Turks, for the very heads they wear. And yet they had the face to say to our Saviour, "We never were in bondage to any man," John 8:33 . But perhaps these Jews were of the sect of Judas Gaulonites, who would not be drawn by any torments to acknowledge any lord upon earth; believing that God only was to be held their Lord and King. (Joseph. Ant. xviii, c. 2.)
15 Shall we give, or shall we not give? But he, knowing their hypocrisy, said unto them, Why tempt ye me? bring me a penny, that I may see it .
Ver. 15. See Trapp on " Mat 22:19 "
16 And they brought it . And he saith unto them, Whose is this image and superscription? And they said unto him, Caesar’s.
Ver. 16. See Trapp on " Mat 22:20 "
17 And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. And they marvelled at him.
Ver. 17. See Trapp on " Mat 22:21 "
18 Then come unto him the Sadducees, which say there is no resurrection; and they asked him, saying,
Ver. 18. See Trapp on " Mat 22:23 "
19 Master, Moses wrote unto us, If a man’s brother die, and leave his wife behind him , and leave no children, that his brother should take his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.
Ver. 19. See Trapp on " Mat 22:24 "
20 Now there were seven brethren: and the first took a wife, and dying left no seed.
Ver. 20. See Trapp on " Mat 22:25 "
21 And the second took her, and died, neither left he any seed: and the third likewise.
Ver. 21. See Trapp on " Mat 22:26 "
22 And the seven had her, and left no seed: last of all the woman died also.
Ver. 22. See Trapp on " Mat 22:26 " See Trapp on " Mat 22:27 "
23 In the resurrection therefore, when they shall rise, whose wife shall she be of them? for the seven had her to wife.
Ver. 23. See Trapp on " Mat 22:28 "
24 And Jesus answering said unto them, Do ye not therefore err, because ye know not the scriptures, neither the power of God?
Ver. 24. Not knowing the Scriptures ] And yet they alleged and argued out of Scripture, but upon a false ground; viz. that the state of men should continue in the other world such as it is here; as to eat, drink, marry, generate, &c.
25 For when they shall rise from the dead, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage; but are as the angels which are in heaven.
Ver. 25. See Trapp on " Mat 22:30 "
26 And as touching the dead, that they rise: have ye not read in the book of Moses, how in the bush God spake unto him, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob?
Ver. 26. I am the God of Abraham ] Therefore thy God also, if thou walk in the footsteps of faithful Abraham,Romans 4:23-24; Romans 4:23-24 .
27 He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: ye therefore do greatly err.
Ver. 27. See Trapp on " Mat 22:32 "
28 And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?
Ver. 28. Asked him, which is the first ] All Christ’s disciples must be Ζητητικοι , Questionists, and do the same to learn that this scribe here doth for a worse purpose.
29 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is , Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:
Ver. 29. Is one Lord ] This the wiser heathens, as Pythagoras, Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle with his Ens Entium miserere mei (if that were his), acknowledged,Exodus 34:14; Exodus 34:14 . ( εις θεος εστι μονος , Pythag. Buxtorf. Tib.) "Thou shalt worship none other God." Where the word אתר rendered other hath ר greater than ordinary, to show the greatness of the sin of serving other gods, and to set forth a difference betweeen acher, other, and echad, one God; one in three, and three in one. Hebrew Text Note
30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.
Ver. 30. See Trapp on " Mat 22:37 "
31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.
Ver. 31. See Trapp on " Mat 22:39 "
32 And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he:
33 And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.
34 And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of God. And no man after that durst ask him any question .
Ver. 34. Answered discreetly ] That he was better than the Pharisees used to be. He was Egregie cordatus homo, and began to lift up his head out of the mud towards heaven.
35 And Jesus answered and said, while he taught in the temple, How say the scribes that Christ is the Son of David?
Ver. 35. How say the Scribes ] They were great genealogists; how was it then that they were no better versed in the genealogy of Christ? that they could give no better an account of his twofold nature? of other things one may be ignorant, and yet be saved: not so here.
36 For David himself said by the Holy Ghost, The LORD said to my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool.
Ver. 36. Said by the Holy Ghost ] The Psalms then are a part of Holy Writ by Christ’s own testimony, who also, Luke 24:44 , divideth the Old Testament into the law of Moses, the prophets, and the Psalms. Yea, Psalmorum liber quaecunque utilia sunt ex omnibus confinet, saith Augustine after Basil; the Psalms are a treasury of all holy truths.
37 David therefore himself calleth him Lord; and whence is he then his son? And the common people heard him gladly.
Ver. 37. The common people ] The lesser fishes commonly bite best.
38 And he said unto them in his doctrine, Beware of the scribes, which love to go in long clothing, and love salutations in the marketplaces,
Ver. 38. Love to go in long clothing ] Down to the heels, as senators, or counsellors. A garment that Christ himself wore, as being a citizen or free denizen of Capernaum. But he loved not to go in it, as these Pharisees, these glorious masters of the Jews; a he affected not this habit more than another out of pride and vain glory, to be looked at, and admired by the common people. This they thought a goodly business.
a οι θελοντες , voluerunt cum summa cupiditate.
39 And the chief seats in the synagogues, and the uppermost rooms at feasts:
Ver. 39. See Trapp on " Mat 23:6 "
40 Which devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayers: these shall receive greater damnation.
Ver. 40. See Trapp on " Mat 23:14 "
41 And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much.
Ver. 41. And beheld ] He still sits and seeth the condition, gift, and mind of every almsgiver; and weighs all, not by the worth of the gift, but by the will of the giver. Lycurgus enjoined the Lacedaemonians to offer small sacrifices. For God, said he, respects more the internal devotion than the external oblation.
How the people cast money ] χαλκον , brass; the worst was thought good enough for God and his poor. Something men will do, but as little as they can.
42 And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing.
Ver. 42. Two mites ] A mite is valued of our money to be three parts of one cent. (Godw. Ant.) Her mite could weigh but little, but her heart weighed heavy; and so her heart, being put to her mite, gave it weight above the greater (but far more heartless) largesses of the Pharisees.
43 And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury:
Ver. 43. This poor widow ] Women are noted in the parable of the lost groat to be fond of money; widows especially, and poor widows, make much of that little they have, as their life; so it is called here, Mark 12:44 , even all her life ( ολον τον βιον ), that is, her livelihood. All this she cast in, it being rather to and for the service of God than to the poor. She resolves, as a widow indeed, to trust wholly in God.
44 For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.
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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Mark 12". Trapp's Complete Commentary. https://studylight.org/
the Fourth Week after Epiphany