Mark 12: Bible Study Guide

Early Morning Worship/ Theme: The Widow’s Two Mites/ Main Passage: Mark 12:41–44; Luke 21:1–4.

Key Text: “Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites, which make a quadrans. So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.”” (Mark 12:41–44, NKJV)

Heart Questions: How did Jesus know that this woman was a Widow? How does this fact (Omniscient) reaffirm that Jesus is God? As a poor person, this Widow was only required to give one of the coins. Why give two? Jesus observes the Widow’s giving (41–42) then assesses the Widow’s gift (43–44). Does God observe how/ what we give today? Does it matter how we give anyway?

In a Nutshell: In this portion of the Scriptures, we see Jesus’ commendation of the  Widow’s commitment to God. He watches some Rich people putting great sums of money into the Temple treasury. He also observes the Widow’s offering. He compares the two kinds of giving: The Rich’s offering (who gave much), amounts to little. The poor Widow’s offering (who gave little), amounts to much (v. 43). Jesus says a poor Widow who drops in two small coins has given the most, why? “For they all contributed from their surplus, but she, from her poverty, put in all she had, all she had to live on!” (v. 44).

Jesus used the Widow’s Giving as example to teach His disciples the value God places on wholehearted commitment. Their own commitment to Jesus would soon be severely tested (Mk. 14:27–31). This incident also illustrates Jesus’ total self-giving in death. God gave everything in order to save you (Jn 3:16, Rom 8:32). What have you given to Him? Remember, God watches every act of service coming from a sincere heart. “But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” (Hebrews 13:16, NKJV) Where is your heart?

Today’s Promise: “But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.” (2 Corinthians 9:6–8, NKJV)

Something to Thank God For: 1. The earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness of it (Ps. 24:1)/ 2. His mercies endures forever: even though we have been unfaithful in our conduct/ giving, He still bear with us (Mal 3:10).

Issues to Pray For: 1. Bible Study Guides in the Gospel of Mark/ 2. Faithfulness when giving to God our money, time, resources, talents, etc./ 3. Commitment to serve the Lord wholeheartedly (Rom 12:1-2)/ 4. Revival and Reformation for all Members here at TGV.

My dear friends, it is Time to Pray! (See Prayer Requests above). Feel free to share a Song, or any Burden you might have, and together, we will seek the Lord in Prayer. May the Lord Bless us all, as we ‘Begin a New Day with Jesus!’ Amen.

41-BSG-12D: TODAY’S CHAPTER

Mark 12: Bible Reading Plan/ The Book of Mark 12/ Theme: Jesus’ controversy with the Jewish religious leaders in the Temple courts (11:27–12:44)

Mark 12 (NKJV) — 1 Then He began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard and set a hedge around it, dug a place for the wine vat and built a tower. And he leased it to vinedressers and went into a far country. 2 Now at vintage-time he sent a servant to the vinedressers, that he might receive some of the fruit of the vineyard from the vinedressers. 3 And they took him and beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 4 Again he sent them another servant, and at him they threw stones, wounded him in the head, and sent him away shamefully treated. 5 And again he sent another, and him they killed; and many others, beating some and killing some. 6 Therefore still having one son, his beloved, he also sent him to them last, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ 7 But those vinedressers said among themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.’ 8 So they took him and killed him and cast him out of the vineyard. 9 “Therefore what will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and destroy the vinedressers, and give the vineyard to others. 10 Have you not even read this Scripture: ‘The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone. 11 This was the Lord’s doing, And it is marvelous in our eyes’?” 12 And they sought to lay hands on Him, but feared the multitude, for they knew He had spoken the parable against them. So they left Him and went away. 13 Then they sent to Him some of the Pharisees and the Herodians, to catch Him in His words. 14 When they had come, they said to Him, “Teacher, we know that You are true, and care about no one; for You do not regard the person of men, but teach the way of God in truth. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not? 15 Shall we pay, or shall we not pay?” But He, knowing their hypocrisy, said to them, “Why do you test Me? Bring Me a denarius that I may see it.” 16 So they brought it. And He said to them, “Whose image and inscription is this?” They said to Him, “Caesar’s.” 17 And Jesus answered and said to them, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” And they marveled at Him. 18 Then some Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to Him; and they asked Him, saying: 19 “Teacher, Moses wrote to us that if a man’s brother dies, and leaves his wife behind, and leaves no children, his brother should take his wife and raise up offspring for his brother. 20 Now there were seven brothers. The first took a wife; and dying, he left no offspring. 21 And the second took her, and he died; nor did he leave any offspring. And the third likewise. 22 So the seven had her and left no offspring. Last of all the woman died also. 23 Therefore, in the resurrection, when they rise, whose wife will she be? For all seven had her as wife.” 24 Jesus answered and said to them, “Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God? 25 For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven. 26 But concerning the dead, that they rise, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the burning bush passage, how God spoke to him, saying, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? 27 He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living. You are therefore greatly mistaken.” 28 Then one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, perceiving that He had answered them well, asked Him, “Which is the first commandment of all?” 29 Jesus answered him, “The first of all the commandments is: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment. 31 And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” 32 So the scribe said to Him, “Well said, Teacher. You have spoken the truth, for there is one God, and there is no other but He. 33 And to love Him with all the heart, with all the understanding, with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself, is more than all the whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” 34 Now when Jesus saw that he answered wisely, He said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” But after that no one dared question Him. 35 Then Jesus answered and said, while He taught in the temple, “How is it that the scribes say that the Christ is the Son of David? 36 For David himself said by the Holy Spirit: ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” ’ 37 Therefore David himself calls Him ‘Lord’; how is He then his Son?” And the common people heard Him gladly. 38 Then He said to them in His teaching, “Beware of the scribes, who desire to go around in long robes, love greetings in the marketplaces, 39 the best seats in the synagogues, and the best places at feasts, 40 who devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation.” 41 Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. 42 Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites, which make a quadrans. 43 So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; 44 for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.”

41-BSG-12i: SEEING WHAT’S THERE.

Bible Study Guide/ Mark 12, (41-BSG-12i)/ Foundational Questions.

[1] What is the main content of this chapter? Jesus tells a parable about the Rejection of Israel: The Parable of the Wicked Tenant Farmers; He then answers Questions about paying Taxes and about the Resurrection. He identifies the Two Most Important Commandments. He talks about the Messiah’s divine identity; lastly, He commends a poor widow for her offering.

[2] What does the chapter say about God, Jesus Christ?

A: He knows the future: He predicted the punishment of Jerusalem (Israel) in the Parable of the Wicked Vinedressers (Mk 12:1–5, 9).

B: God the Father, sent His only Son to minister, and die for us (Mk 12:6-8).

C: Jesus Christ is the stone which the builders rejected. Has become the chief cornerstone (Mk 12:10).

D: Jesus teaches the way of God in truth (Mk 12:14).

E: God is all-knowing: Jesus knew the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and the Herodians. They came to test Him (Mk 12:13-15).

F: He desires that we obey authorities: “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s” (Mk 12:17).

G: “He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living.” (Mk 12:27)

H: There is only One God in Three Person: “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.” (Mk 12:29, 32)

I: God desires our love, adoration, and unwavering commitment: We ought to love Him “with all the heart, with all the understanding, with all the soul, and with all the strength” (Mk 12:33)

J: God condemns hypocrisy, pretense: (Mk 12:38-40)

K: God knows, observes, respect, loves, and blesses a cheerful giver. God watches every act of service coming from a sincere heart. The Widow with only two mites is commended for her commitment to God (Mk 12:41-44).

L: Jesus Christ is now sitting at the Right Hand of His Father: “David himself, [inspired] in the Holy Spirit, declared, The Lord said to my Lord, Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies [a footstool] under Your feet.” (Mark 12:36, AMP)

  • “The LORD said to my Lord” Literally, “Yahweh said to ’Adonai.’
  • According to Jesus’ statement the conversation occurred between God the Father and God the Son. Christ is seated in the place of highest honor in the universe, the right hand of His Father.” – (SDA BC 3:880).

M: The exaltation of Jesus Christ to the Father’s Right Hand –(Biblical Support):

  • “Him God has exalted to His right hand to be Prince and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.” (Acts 5:31, NKJV)
  • “Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear.” (Acts 2:33, NKJV)
  • “But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God,” (Acts 7:55, NKJV)
  • “Which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come.” (Ephesians 1:20–21, NKJV)
  • “Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Philippians 2:9–11, NKJV)
  • “If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.” (Colossians 3:1, NKJV)
  • “Now this is the main point of the things we are saying: We have such a High Priest, who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens,” (Hebrews 8:1, NKJV)
  • “But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God,” (Hebrews 10:12, NKJV)
  • “Who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, angels and authorities and powers having been made subject to Him.” (1 Peter 3:22, NKJV)
  • “To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.” (Revelation 3:21, NKJV)

[3] What do you think is the main point God is making by including this chapter in the Bible? – [a]The image of the vineyard immediately identifies the nation of Israel (Isa. 5:1–7; Ps. 80:8–16; Jer. 2:21), and the tenants are the leaders of the nation (v. 10; Acts 4:11).”

[b] “Jesus quoted from Ps. 118, a messianic psalm (118:22–23; and compare Mark 11:9 with Ps. 118:25–26); and He allowed His hearers to pronounce their own sentence (Matt. 21:41). By applying to Himself the image of the cornerstone, Jesus was affirming that He was indeed the Messiah (Acts 4:11; 1 Peter 2:7).” – [Warren W. Wiersbe, Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines on the New Testament, (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1992), 131–132].

[4] What response do you think this chapter should inspires us to do? Since Jesus is seated at the Right Hand of God, — “Let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.” (Hebrews 4:14b–15, NKJV)

41-BSG-12D: THEOLOGICAL QUESTIONS

Bible Study Guide/ Mark 12, (41-BSG-12D)/ Theological Questions 

[1] Jesus Christ as David’s son: “How is it that the scribes say that the Christ is the Son of David?” (Mk. 12:35b). Previously, the Pharisees, Herodians, and Sadducees had asked their questions to trick Jesus. Jesus did not do the same in His questions to them; instead He got to the heart of the matter: “Do you really know who I am?” Since Jesus is the Christ, He spoke of Himself here.

  • “The LORD said to my Lord” (Mk 12:36a) — quoted from Psalm 110:1. In v. 36, Jesus challenges them with a follow up question: “How can king David call his descendant Lord?”
  • “In the Hebrew the first word meaning “Lord” is Yahweh, which always refers to God; but the second is Adonai, which sometimes refers to God and sometimes not—as in the psalm where it originally referred to a king, whoever and whenever he was. One might paraphrase, “God said to my superior.” – [James A. Brooks, Mark, The New American Commentary, (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1991), 23:200].

Beloved, the identity of Jesus Christ is the central issue of life— “Other spiritual questions are irrelevant unless we first decide to believe that Jesus is who He said He was.”

  • “The Pharisees expected a Messiah (the Christ, the Anointed One), but they erroneously thought he would be only a human ruler who would reign on King David’s throne, deliver them from Gentile domination by establishing God’s rule on earth, and restore Israel’s greatness as in the days of David and Solomon. They knew that the Messiah would be a son (descendant) of David, but they did not understand that he would be more than a human descendant—he would be God in the flesh. They were correct, but only halfway.” – [Bruce B. Barton, Mark, Life Application Bible Commentary, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 1994), 360].

[2] Therefore, David himself calls Him ‘Lord,’ how is He then his Son?” (Mk 12:37)

“The Jews and early Christians knew the Old Testament was inspired by God, bearing his authority in its teachings. Jesus quoted Psalm 110:1 to show that David, speaking under the influence of the Holy Spirit, understood the Messiah to be his Lord (that is, one who had authority over him), not just his descendant. The Messiah would be a human descendant of David, but he would also be God’s divine Son. The religious leaders did not understand that the Messiah would be far more than a human descendant of David; he would be God himself in human form, much greater than David. (Hebrews 1:13 uses the same text as proof of Christ’s deity.)”

“Using the same type of rabbinic debate technique that he had used before (12:26), Jesus took the specific words of this verse in David’s psalm and explained their implications.” – [Bruce B. Barton, Mark, Life Application Bible Commentary, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 1994), 360].

[3] When will God the Father make Christ’s enemies [a footstool] under His feet? (Mk 12:33). At the Second Coming!

1 Corinthians 15:24–28 (NKJV) — 24 Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. 25 For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet. 26 The last enemy that will be destroyed is death. 27 For “He has put all things under His feet.” But when He says “all things are put under Him,” it is evident that He who put all things under Him is excepted. 28 Now when all things are made subject to Him, then the Son Himself will also be subject to Him who put all things under Him, that God may be all in all.

“Telos (end) not only can refer to that which is final but also to that which is completed, consummated, or fulfilled. In the final culmination of the ages, when He delivers up the kingdom to the God and Father, all things will be restored as they were originally designed and created by God to be. In the end it will be as it was in the beginning. Sin will be no more, and God will reign supremely, without enemy and without challenge. That gives us great insight into the divine redemptive plan. Here is the culmination: Christ turns over the restored world to God His Father, who sent Him to recover it.

Christ’s final act will be to conquer permanently every enemy of God, every contending rule and authority and power. They will forever be abolished, never to exist again, never again to oppose God or to deceive, mislead, or threaten His people or corrupt any of His creation.

This final act of Christ, the turning over the world to His Father, will be worked out over the period of a thousand years, during the millennial rule of Christ on earth. As vividly and dramatically portrayed in the symbols and statements of Revelation 5–20, Christ will take back to Himself the earth that He created and that is rightfully His. The scene of Revelation 5 depicts the Son taking rightful possession of the title deed to the earth, His going out to take it back from the usurper to present it to the Father. In doing that He will quell all rebellions and subdue all enemies. He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. It is necessary for Him to rule.” – [John F. MacArthur Jr., 1 Corinthians, MacArthur New Testament Commentary, (Chicago: Moody Press, 1984), 419].

41-BSG-12J: QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS.

Bible Study Guide/ Mark 12, (41-BSG-12J)/ Questions and Answers.

[1] Why did Jesus teach in parables? (1) As a means of illustrating profound, divine truths. Jesus actually answers that question Himself. (see Matt. 13:11-17, Mark 4:10-12; Luke 8:9-10).

[2] What is this parable all about? The Wicked Husbandmen, (see Mark 12:1–12// Matt. 21:33–46// Luke 20:9–19). The owner (God) rented the vineyard to some farmers.

“In the parable the householder represented God, the vineyard the Jewish nation, and the hedge the divine law which was their protection. The tower was a symbol of the temple. The lord of the vineyard had done everything needful for its prosperity. “What could have been done more to my vineyard,” he says, “that I have not done in it.” Isaiah 5:4. Thus was represented God’s unwearied care for Israel.” – (The Desire of Ages, p. 596).

[3] What happened to the servant that came to receive the fruit of the vineyard? (3) They took him and beat him and sent him away empty-handed

[4] What happened to the second servant that came to the tenants for fruits? (4) They [threw stones and] wounded him in the head, and treated him disgracefully.

[5] What happened to the third servant that came to the tenants to receive fruits? (5) That one they killed; then many others—some they beat and some they killed.

[6] What did the tenants do to the only son and the heir of the vineyard? (8) They killed Him [and attempt to destroy the evidence]; They threw his body outside the vineyard! (NOTE: This is how the Jewish Nation dealt with Christ, the only begotten Son of God).

[7] What will be the fate of those who reject the heir? (9) He will come and destroy the tenants, and will give the vineyard to others.

“And as the husbandmen were to return to the lord a due proportion of the fruits of the vineyard, so God’s people were to honor Him by a life corresponding to their sacred privileges. But as the husbandmen had killed the servants whom the master sent to them for fruit, so the Jews had put to death the prophets whom God sent to call them to repentance. Messenger after messenger had been slain. Thus far the application of the parable could not be questioned, and in what followed it was not less evident. In the beloved son whom the lord of the vineyard finally sent to his disobedient servants, and whom they seized and slew, the priests and rulers saw a distinct picture of Jesus and His impending fate. Already they were planning to slay Him whom the Father had sent to them as a last appeal. In the retribution inflicted upon the ungrateful husbandmen was portrayed the doom of those who should put Christ to death.” – (The Desire of Ages, p. 597).

[8] Looking with pity upon them, what pronouncement did Jesus make? (10) — “Have you not even read this Scripture: ‘The stone which the builders rejected Has become The Chief Cornerstone. This was the Lord’s doing, And it is marvelous in our eyes’?” (Mark 12:10–11, NKJV)

“Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to a nation bearing the fruits of it. And whoever falls on this stone will be broken; but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder.” (Matthew 21:43–44, NKJV)

COMMENTARY: “This prophecy the Jews had often repeated in the synagogues, applying it to the coming Messiah. Christ was the cornerstone of the Jewish economy, and of the whole plan of salvation. This foundation stone the Jewish builders, the priests and rulers of Israel, were now rejecting. The Saviour called their attention to the prophecies that would show them their danger. By every means in His power He sought to make plain to them the nature of the deed they were about to do.”

And His words had another purpose. In asking the question, “When the lord therefore of the vineyard cometh, what will he do unto those husbandmen?” Christ designed that the Pharisees should answer as they did. He designed that they should condemn themselves. His warnings, failing to arouse them to repentance, would seal their doom, and He wished them to see that they had brought ruin on themselves. He designed to show them the justice of God in the withdrawal of their national privileges, which had already begun, and which would end, not only in the destruction of their temple and their city, but in the dispersion of the nation.

The hearers recognized the warning. But notwithstanding the sentence they themselves had pronounced, the priests and rulers were ready to fill out the picture by saying, “This is the heir; come, let us kill him.” “But when they sought to lay hands on Him, they feared the multitude,” for the public sentiment was in Christ’s favor.” — [Ellen Gould White, The Desire of Ages, Conflict of the Ages Series, (Pacific Press Publishing Association, 1898), 3:597].

[9] Is it right to pay the imperial tax? Did Jesus support paying taxes? (13–17) Yes. “Jesus said to them, Pay to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s. And they stood marveling and greatly amazed at Him.” (Mark 12:17, AMP)

[10] What was the next catch question that the Pharisees ask Jesus? (19-23)  

“Teacher, Moses wrote to us that if a man’s brother dies, and leaves his wife behind, and leaves no children, his brother should take his wife and raise up offspring for his brother. Now there were seven brothers. The first took a wife; and dying, he left no offspring. And the second took her, and he died; nor did he leave any offspring. And the third likewise. So the seven had her and left no offspring. Last of all the woman died also. Therefore, in the resurrection, when they rise, whose wife will she be? For all seven had her as wife.” (Mark 12:19–23, NKJV)

“The law of levirate marriage, written by Moses in Deuteronomy 25:5–10, would cause a real problem for the woman in the situation they described, for she had been married seven times to seven different men, all according to the law. The Sadducees reasoned that since this was in the law, there could not be a resurrection. When all eight of them were resurrected (the seven brothers and the woman), “Whose wife will she be?” The Sadducees erroneously assumed that if people were resurrected, it would be back to a continuation of life on earth—and that would be too confusing to be possible. They were incapable of understanding that God could both raise the dead and make new lives for his people, lives that would be different from what they had known on earth. The Sadducees had brought God down to their level. Because they could not conceive of a resurrection life, they decided that God couldn’t raise the dead. And Moses hadn’t written about it, so they considered the “case closed.” – [Bruce B. Barton, Mark, Life Application Bible Commentary, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 1994), 349].

[11] How did Jesus answer this question? (24) “Jesus said to them, Is not this where you wander out of the way and go wrong, because you know neither the Scriptures nor the power of God?” (Mark 12:24, AMP)

“Jesus wasted no time dealing with their hypothetical situation, but went directly to their underlying assumption that resurrection of the dead was impossible. Jesus clearly stated that they were wrong about the resurrection for two reasons: (1) They didn’t know the Scriptures (if they did, they would believe in the resurrection because it is taught in Scripture), and (2) they didn’t know the power of God (if they did, they would believe in the resurrection because God’s power makes it possible, even necessary). Ignorance on these two counts was inexcusable for these religious leaders.” – (Ibid, p. 350)

[12] Will there marriages in heaven? (25) NO. “For when they arise from among the dead, [men] do not marry nor are [women] given in marriage, but are like the angels in heaven.” (Mark 12:25, AMP)

LIFE IN THE KINGDOM: “What life will be like after the resurrection is far beyond our ability to understand or imagine (Isaiah 64:4; 1 Corinthians 2:9). However, we need not dread eternal life because of the unknowns. God is good. We know he loves us and wants the best for us. Instead of wondering what God’s coming kingdom will be like, we should concentrate on our relationship with Christ right now because in the new kingdom we will be with him. If we learn to love and trust Christ now, we will welcome what he has in store for us then.” – (Ibid, p. 350)

[13] How did God refer to Himself in their own Scriptures? (26) “But concerning the dead being raised—have you not read in the book of Moses, [in the passage] about the [burning] bush, how God said to him, I am the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob?” (Mark 12:26, AMP)

[14] What was the one sincere question of the scribe? (28) “And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?”” (Mark 12:28, ESV)

[15] How can God be three (the Trinity) and one at the same time? (29) “Jesus answered, “The foremost is, ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord;” (Mark 12:29, NASB95)

God is one Lord. See on Deut. 6:4. “The Scripture passage here quoted has been the sacred watchword of Israel down through their long history. It reflects the distinctive belief of the Jews in the one true God, in contrast with the many gods of the nations. These words were uttered to open the morning and evening prayer services in the Temple, and are a regular part of Jewish synagogue services to this day.” —(The Seventh-Day Adventist Bible Commentary, 5:646–648).

[16] How does Jesus answer this question? (30) “And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment.” (Mark 12:30, NKJV)

[17] What Commandment does Jesus name as second in importance? (31) “And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”” (Mark 12:31, NKJV)

[18] Against whom did Jesus then warn the people? (38-40) Scribes (the teachers of the law). “Then He said to them in His teaching, “Beware of the scribes, who desire to go around in long robes, love greetings in the marketplaces, the best seats in the synagogues, and the best places at feasts, who devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation.”” (Mark 12:38–40, NKJV)

[19] How much money did the poor widow cast into the Temple treasury? (42)“And a widow who was poverty-stricken came and put in two copper mites [the smallest of coins], which together make half of a cent.” (Mark 12:42, AMP)

[20] Why did the widow’s very small gift make a greater impression on Jesus than any other? (44) “And He called His disciples [to Him] and said to them, Truly and surely I tell you, this widow, [she who is] poverty-stricken, has put in more than all those contributing to the treasury. For they all threw in out of their abundance; but she, out of her deep poverty, has put in everything that she had—[even] all she had on which to live.” (Mark 12:43–44, AMP)

This poor widow gave “more than all of the rich contributors together. In the sight of Heaven it is not really the size of a gift that counts, but the motive that prompts it. Heaven is interested only in the amount of love and devotion the gift represents, not its monetary value. That is the only basis on which God rewards men, as Jesus so pointedly illustrated by the parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard (see on Matt. 20:15). Jesus’ commendation of this widow was based on the spirit that prompted her gift, not on its intrinsic value.” —(The Seventh-Day Adventist Bible Commentary, 5:646–649).