Sermon Summary • August 20
Mark 12:1–12 (17) (NIV) • Pastor Tim Tseng
Jesus was rejected because he was a Prophet King. As disciples, we should expect to face rejection, too. Especially when we try to follow him faithfully. But there is hope because
The stone the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone. (Psalm 119:22)
1 Why couldn’t Jesus and the Jewish authorities get along?
Mark tells us in verse 12 that “the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders looked for a way to arrest him because they knew he had spoken the parable against them.” What was going on?
Well, when Jesus entered Jerusalem in Mark 11, he didn’t curry favor with the Jewish authorities. In previous chapters, Jesus already had an uneasy relationship with them. He criticized the Pharisees for their legalism and desires to exclude all who are not deemed “pure” enough. Now, as he enters Jerusalem, he attacks the abuses in the Temple system.
With the parable of the terrible vineyard tenants (Mark 12:1-9), Jesus challenges the Sanhedrin’s legitimacy, knowing full-well that they were about to reject him despite his popularity among ordinary people.
2 Jesus was a prophet; he wanted the Jewish leaders to be faithful to God
If you recall in Mark 11:15-17, as Jesus cleansed the temple, he quoted from Isaiah 56:7, “for my house will be called a house of prayer for all nations,” and Jeremiah 7:11, but “you have made it ‘a den of robbers.’ Jesus is telling the people of Israel, especially its leaders, that he is a King who is also a prophet like John the Baptist. What are prophets?
Did you know that 17 of the 39 Old Testament books were written by prophets (and this doesn’t include Moses, Nathan, Elijah, Elisha, and other prophets). John the Baptist was considered a prophet.
Prophets wanted the people of Israel to turn away from idolatry and Israel’s leaders to obey God’s word. They were very concerned about right and wrong.. They believe that Israel had be holy, both individually AND socially. They wanted Israel to be a light to the Gentiles – a nation that would invite the world into God’s plan for salvation and redemption. But Israel failed. And God kept raising up prophets to remind them of their purpose and to teach them to be faithful.
3 If Jesus is a prophet king and savior, then what?
Just look around at all the injustice and idolatry! We are called to be prophets, too. By our love, by our passion for justice and mercy, we need to take a stand against the forces of darkness and oppression. Rejection will likely happen, but God promises to transform rejection into the cornerstone of God’s redemption!