Mark 12: Not Just a Number, What’s the Hidden Story?

Explore the moral lessons from Mark 12's Parable of the Tenants. Learn about respect, stewardship, acceptance and the power of second chances in our daily lives.

Interpreting Parables And Teachings

In the context of the Bible, parables are simple stories used to illustrate a moral or spiritual lesson as told by Jesus in the Gospels. Mark 12 includes the Parable of the Tenants, which is a story about a man who plants a vineyard, rents it to some farmers, and then goes away on a journey.

Mark 12:1-12:

1 He then began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard.

He put a wall around it, dug a pit for the winepress and built a watchtower.

Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and moved to another place. 2 At harvest time he sent a servant to the tenants to collect from them some of the fruit of the vineyard. 3 But they seized him, beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 4 Then he sent another servant to them; they struck this man on the head and treated him shamefully. 5 He sent still another, and that one they killed.

He sent many others; some of them they beat, others they killed.

6 “He had one left to send, a son, whom he loved.

He sent him last of all, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’

7 “But the tenants said to one another, ‘This is the heir.

Come, let’s kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.’

8 “So they took him and killed him, and threw him out of the vineyard.

9 “What then will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and kill those tenants and give the vineyard to others.

10 “Haven’t you read this passage of Scripture:

‘The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone;

11 the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes’?”

12 Then 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.

But they were afraid of the crowd; so they left him and went away.

To apply this to your life, consider the following:

  • Respect and stewardship – Just as the tenants were entrusted with the vineyard, you too are given responsibilities. Handling them with care and respect is essential.
  • Response to correction – The owner sent multiple servants, symbolizing chances for the tenants to correct their behavior. When you’re offered guidance or correction, it’s a chance for growth, so embrace it.
  • Rejection and acceptance – The son and the stone rejected by the builders, eventually becoming the cornerstone, reminds you that rejection is not the end; it can lead to a significant role in a bigger plan.

In daily life, be like the owner, giving others second chances, be steadfast like the cornerstone, and cherish your role, no matter how small, as part of a larger purpose.