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Mark 12:41–44. two themes in this story: the true measure of giving, and the true measure of giving, and another reason for the coming judgment upon.

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Presentation on theme: "Mark 12:41–44. two themes in this story: the true measure of giving, and the true measure of giving, and another reason for the coming judgment upon."— Presentation transcript:

1 Mark 12:41–44

2

3 two themes in this story: the true measure of giving, and the true measure of giving, and another reason for the coming judgment upon the nation of Israel (an underlying theme in the Gospel of Mark) another reason for the coming judgment upon the nation of Israel (an underlying theme in the Gospel of Mark)

4 evidence for God’s lawsuit against Israel accumulates as Mark progresses—culminating in the religious leaders mocking their Messiah on the cross (Mark 15:31–32) evidence for God’s lawsuit against Israel accumulates as Mark progresses—culminating in the religious leaders mocking their Messiah on the cross (Mark 15:31–32)

5 context: why is this story between the condemnation of the scribes (12:38–40) and the destruction of the Temple (13:1–2)? why is this story between the condemnation of the scribes (12:38–40) and the destruction of the Temple (13:1–2)?

6 the end of Jesus' public ministry occurs in Mark 12:40—in the Temple (12:35) the end of Jesus' public ministry occurs in Mark 12:40—in the Temple (12:35)

7 Mark 12:38–40

8 And in His teaching He was saying: “Beware of the scribes who like to walk around in long robes, and like respectful greetings in the market places (Mark 12:38),

9 and chief seats in the synagogues, and places of honor at banquets (Mark 12:39).

10 They are the ones who devour widows’ houses, and for appearance’s sake offer long prayers; these will receive greater condemnation” (Mark 12:40).

11 two sins: hypocrisy (appearance of godliness), hypocrisy (appearance of godliness), stealing from widows and then covering up their despicable theft with a hypocritical show of godliness—offering long prayers stealing from widows and then covering up their despicable theft with a hypocritical show of godliness—offering long prayers

12 terrible crime: to "devour widows' houses" probably refers to encouraging widows to make large gifts beyond their means to teachers of the Law and to the Temple (teachers were not allowed to charge for their teaching) to "devour widows' houses" probably refers to encouraging widows to make large gifts beyond their means to teachers of the Law and to the Temple (teachers were not allowed to charge for their teaching)

13 "devouring" (katesthio) implies consuming completely: birds eating seed (Luke 8:5) and the effect of fire (Rev 11:5; 20:9)—to devour financially is to leave someone pennyless (the prodigal son completely lost his inheritance, Luke 15:12–14, 30) "devouring" (katesthio) implies consuming completely: birds eating seed (Luke 8:5) and the effect of fire (Rev 11:5; 20:9)—to devour financially is to leave someone pennyless (the prodigal son completely lost his inheritance, Luke 15:12–14, 30)

14 Corban: was a similar crime—by encouraging adult sons to dedicate their earnings to God, aged and needy parents were impoverished (Mark 7:6–13) was a similar crime—by encouraging adult sons to dedicate their earnings to God, aged and needy parents were impoverished (Mark 7:6–13)

15 Mark 12:41–44

16 And He sat down opposite the treasury, and began observing how the multitude were putting 1 money into the treasury; and many rich people were putting in large sums (Mark 12:41). 1 i.e., copper coins

17 And a poor widow came and put in two small copper 1 coins, which amount to a 2 cent (Mark 12:42). 1 Lit., lepta 2 Lit., quadrans, i.e., 1/64 of a denarius

18 the faithful widow is a striking contrast to the greed and hypocrisy of the scribes (12:38– 40) the juxtaposition of this story with verse 40 suggests she is most likely one of their victims the faithful widow is a striking contrast to the greed and hypocrisy of the scribes (12:38– 40) the juxtaposition of this story with verse 40 suggests she is most likely one of their victims

19 she is also a striking contrast to the "many rich people" who "were putting in large sums" (12:41) 41cmany rich people were putting in large amounts 42a a poor widow put in two small coins 44aThey all out of the riches to them put in 44b she out of the poverty of her put in she is also a striking contrast to the "many rich people" who "were putting in large sums" (12:41) 41cmany rich people were putting in large amounts 42a a poor widow put in two small coins 44aThey all out of the riches to them put in 44b she out of the poverty of her put in

20 contributions were dropped into 13 trumpet-shaped chests called shopharot (“the Trumpets”) placed at intervals around the walls of the Court of the Women coins were dropped into the narrow top and accumulated in the wider base they were inscribed with various titles: "New Shekel Dues," "Old Shekel Dues," "Bird-Offerings," "Young Birds for the Holocaust," "Wood," "Frankincense," "Gold for the Mercy-Seat," and six "Freewill- Offerings" contributions were dropped into 13 trumpet-shaped chests called shopharot (“the Trumpets”) placed at intervals around the walls of the Court of the Women coins were dropped into the narrow top and accumulated in the wider base they were inscribed with various titles: "New Shekel Dues," "Old Shekel Dues," "Bird-Offerings," "Young Birds for the Holocaust," "Wood," "Frankincense," "Gold for the Mercy-Seat," and six "Freewill- Offerings"

21 she gave her offering and believed God would provide all of her needs; the scribes used their religion to exploit people to raise money she gave her offering and believed God would provide all of her needs; the scribes used their religion to exploit people to raise money

22 And calling His disciples to Him, He said to them, “Truly I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the contributors to the treasury (Mark 12:43);

23 for they all put in out of their 1 surplus, but she, out of her poverty, put in all she owned, 2 all she had to live on” (Mark 12:44). 1 Or, abundance 2 Lit., her whole livelihood

24 her small offering was greater than all the offerings made by the rich together (12:43) she gave two lepta—about a fourth of a cent a lepton (“the thin one”), the smallest of all Jewish coins, was worth about an eighth of a cent and is the only Jewish coin mentioned in the New Testament her small offering was greater than all the offerings made by the rich together (12:43) she gave two lepta—about a fourth of a cent a lepton (“the thin one”), the smallest of all Jewish coins, was worth about an eighth of a cent and is the only Jewish coin mentioned in the New Testament

25 the rich gave from their surplus after their own needs were satisfied; she gave all she owned before God provided her needs the rich gave from their surplus after their own needs were satisfied; she gave all she owned before God provided her needs

26 the value of an offering is best measured (1) against the financial worth of the offerer, (2) as a percentage of total assets, (3) by the amount left over after giving, or (4) by the sacrifice made, not the amount given (cf. 2 Sam 24:24) the value of an offering is best measured (1) against the financial worth of the offerer, (2) as a percentage of total assets, (3) by the amount left over after giving, or (4) by the sacrifice made, not the amount given (cf. 2 Sam 24:24)

27 by this measure anyone— rich or poor—can lay up treasure in heaven and be rich toward God (Luke 12:21, 33–34; 18:22) by this measure anyone— rich or poor—can lay up treasure in heaven and be rich toward God (Luke 12:21, 33–34; 18:22)

28 she entrusted her life to God, lived in total dependence upon him, laid up treasure in heaven, and became rich toward God she entrusted her life to God, lived in total dependence upon him, laid up treasure in heaven, and became rich toward God

29

30 the story of the poor widow is a bridge between the avarice of the religious leaders (12:38–40) and the coming destruction of the Temple (13:1–2) the story of the poor widow is a bridge between the avarice of the religious leaders (12:38–40) and the coming destruction of the Temple (13:1–2)

31 the abuse of widows in Jesus' day justifies the coming destruction of Judea and the Temple (as it justified the destruction of Israel and Judah in the Old Testament) this widow is one of the last nails in the coffin of national the abuse of widows in Jesus' day justifies the coming destruction of Judea and the Temple (as it justified the destruction of Israel and Judah in the Old Testament) this widow is one of the last nails in the coffin of national

32 the days of covenant- breaking Israel are numbered; all that remains is to implement the curse of the Sinaitic Covenant the days of covenant- breaking Israel are numbered; all that remains is to implement the curse of the Sinaitic Covenant

33

34 widows were as much a part of the covenant community as anyone else (Deut 16:10–11, 13–14) widows were as much a part of the covenant community as anyone else (Deut 16:10–11, 13–14)

35 widows, orphans, and foreigners were vulnerable and dependent and were offered special protection under the Law: (1) fields should be left for widows to glean (Deut 24:19–21; cf. Lev 19:9–10; 23:22; carried out in Ruth 2), and (2) a triennial tithe provided food for widows and a blessing for Israel (Deut 14:28–29) widows, orphans, and foreigners were vulnerable and dependent and were offered special protection under the Law: (1) fields should be left for widows to glean (Deut 24:19–21; cf. Lev 19:9–10; 23:22; carried out in Ruth 2), and (2) a triennial tithe provided food for widows and a blessing for Israel (Deut 14:28–29)

36 there was no reason for farmers to be greedy: God promised to provide an abundance of food if the people obeyed the Covenant (Deut 28:4–5, 8, 11–12) there was no reason for farmers to be greedy: God promised to provide an abundance of food if the people obeyed the Covenant (Deut 28:4–5, 8, 11–12)

37 God promised to (1) support (Psa 146:9; Prov 15:25), (2) execute justice for (Deut 10:17–18; Psa 68:5), (3) avenge (Psa 94:1–7), and (4) curse anyone who withholds justice from a widow (Deut 27:19) oppressing a widow was a sin unto death (Exod 22:22–24) God promised to (1) support (Psa 146:9; Prov 15:25), (2) execute justice for (Deut 10:17–18; Psa 68:5), (3) avenge (Psa 94:1–7), and (4) curse anyone who withholds justice from a widow (Deut 27:19) oppressing a widow was a sin unto death (Exod 22:22–24)

38 widows were often taken advantage of in times of national apostasy (Isa 1:16–17, 23; 10:1–4) widows were often taken advantage of in times of national apostasy (Isa 1:16–17, 23; 10:1–4)

39 abuse of widows contributed to the fifth cycle of discipline—to the fall and dispersion of Judah in A.D. 70 (Jer 7:5–7; Ezek 22:7; Zech 7:9–14) abuse of widows contributed to the fifth cycle of discipline—to the fall and dispersion of Judah in A.D. 70 (Jer 7:5–7; Ezek 22:7; Zech 7:9–14)

40 Jews who exploited widows in the Age of Israel will be judged shortly after the second coming of Christ—by the Messiah (Mal 3:2–5) Jews who exploited widows in the Age of Israel will be judged shortly after the second coming of Christ—by the Messiah (Mal 3:2–5)

41 Many of these insights come from an excellent article by Geoffrey Smith: Geoffrey Smith, “A Closer Look At The Widow’s Offering: Mark 12:41–44,” JETS, March 1997, 27–36.


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