Written by Matthew Thompson
Mark 12:1a “And He began to speak to them in parables:”
During His final week of ministry on earth, Jesus embarked on a whirlwind of teaching. In Mark chapter twelve, He exposes the religious leaders for what they are, shows His true mission for being here, and foreshadows what He is about to endure.
For centuries the people of God had been divided into two groups. On the one hand you had the teachers of the law. These were the educated, the intellectuals, the self-described pious. In their eyes, they were the only ones who were truly close to God. Only they were worthy of His blessing. Only they were able to interpret the law. Only they were the ones allowed to have a voice.
On the other hand you had the commoners. They were the craftsmen, the traders, the merchants. They toiled day in and day out just to survive. Though they were hungry to know God, they were deemed unworthy of Him by the religious leaders of their day. They were seen as ignorant simpletons, incapable of grasping the true depth of scriptures.
There was no attempt by the religious leaders to explain the scriptures to the people. They offered nothing to help the nation discover who God truly was. The people remained in the dark until they met Jesus. For the first time in their lives, they began to learn about the true nature of God. Through the parables, Jesus began to explain God in a way that the people could understand. In studying them today, we continue to gain a true picture of the kingdom of God and the surpassing grace by which we have been saved.