Beware of the Scribes (Mk 12:38-12:39)

“As Jesus taught,

He said.

‘Beware of the Scribes!

They like

To walk around

In long robes.

They like

To be greeted

With respect

In the market places.

They like

To have the best seats

In the synagogues.

They like

To have the places

Of honor

At banquets.’”

 

Καὶ ἐν τῇ διδαχῇ αὐτοῦ ἔλεγεν Βλέπετε ἀπὸ τῶν γραμματέων τῶν θελόντων ἐν στολαῖς περιπατεῖν καὶ ἀσπασμοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἀγοραῖς

καὶ πρωτοκαθεδρίας ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς καὶ πρωτοκλισίας ἐν τοῖς δείπνοις·

 

There is something similar in Matthew, chapter 23, who had a much longer diatribe against the Scribes and the Pharisees.  Luke, chapter 20:46, also had something similar to this.  Mark indicated that as Jesus taught (Καὶ ἐν τῇ διδαχῇ), he told them to beware of the Scribes (ἔλεγεν Βλέπετε ἀπὸ τῶν γραμματέων), but there was no mention of the Pharisees.  These Scribes walked around in long robes (τῶν θελόντων ἐν στολαῖς περιπατεῖν).  They loved to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces (καὶ ἀσπασμοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἀγοραῖς).  They loved the front seats in the assembly synagogues (καὶ πρωτοκαθεδρίας ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς).  They loved to have the chief places of honor at banquet feasts (καὶ πρωτοκλισίας ἐν τοῖς δείπνοις),  They were the elite social butterflies.

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He sends his son (Mk 12:6-12:6)

“He had still one other,

A beloved son.

Finally,

He sent him

To them.

He said.

‘They will respect

My son.’”

 

ἔτι ἕνα εἶχεν, υἱὸν ἀγαπητόν· ἀπέστειλεν αὐτὸν ἔσχατον πρὸς αὐτοὺς λέγων ὅτι Ἐντραπήσονται τὸν υἱόν μου.

 

The sending of the beloved son of the landowner in this parable can be found in Matthew, chapter 21:37, and Luke, chapter 20:13, almost word for word.  Mark said that this landowner had his own beloved son (ἔτι ἕνα εἶχεν, υἱὸν ἀγαπητόν).  Finally, he was going to send him to these wicked tenants (ἀπέστειλεν αὐτὸν ἔσχατον πρὸς αὐτοὺς).  He said (λέγων) to himself that they would respect his son (ὅτι Ἐντραπήσονται τὸν υἱόν μου).  This story is becoming clearer now.

Rabbi (Mt 23:7-23:8)

“The Pharisees

And Scribes

Love to be greeted

With respect

In the marketplaces.

They loved

To have people

Call them rabbi.

But you are not

To be called rabbi.

You have one teacher.

You are all student brothers.”

 

καὶ τοὺς ἀσπασμοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἀγοραῖς καὶ καλεῖσθαι ὑπὸ τῶν ἀνθρώπων Ῥαββεί.

ὑμεῖς δὲ μὴ κληθῆτε Ῥαββεί· εἷς γάρ ἐστιν ὑμῶν ὁ διδάσκαλος, πάντες δὲ ὑμεῖς ἀδελφοί ἐστε.

 

There is unique to Matthew.  Rabbi is a derogatory term for Matthew, rather than a term of respect as it was and is among the Jewish people.  Jesus said that the Pharisees and Scribes loved to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces (καὶ τοὺς ἀσπασμοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἀγοραῖς).  They loved to have people call them rabbi (καὶ καλεῖσθαι ὑπὸ τῶν ἀνθρώπων Ῥαββεί), since this was an Aramaic term that generally meant great teacher or master.  Jesus was often called a teacher by Matthew, but not a rabbi.  Jesus warned them not to call anyone rabbi (ὑμεῖς δὲ μὴ κληθῆτε Ῥαββεί).  They only had one teacher (εἷς γάρ ἐστιν ὑμῶν ὁ διδάσκαλος), implying himself, Jesus, since all of them were brother students (πάντες δὲ ὑμεῖς ἀδελφοί ἐστε) learning from Jesus.  Matthew once again indicated his distaste for the Pharisees who called themselves rabbis.

The tenants kill the landowner’s son (Mt 21:37-21:39)

“Finally,

The landowner sent

His son

To them.

He said.

‘They will respect

My son.’

But when the tenants

Saw the son,

They said to themselves.

‘This is the heir!

Come!

Let us kill him!

We will get

His inheritance!’

They seized him.

They cast him out

Of the vineyard.

They killed him.”

 

ὕστερον δὲ ἀπέστειλεν πρὸς αὐτοὺς τὸν υἱὸν αὐτοῦ λέγων Ἐντραπήσονται τὸν υἱόν μου.

οἱ δὲ γεωργοὶ ἰδόντες τὸν υἱὸν εἶπον ἐν ἑαυτοῖς Οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ κληρονόμος· δεῦτε ἀποκτείνωμεν αὐτὸν καὶ σχῶμεν τὴν κληρονομίαν αὐτοῦ·

καὶ λαβόντες αὐτὸν ἐξέβαλον ἔξω τοῦ ἀμπελῶνος καὶ ἀπέκτειναν.

 

This parable of the killing of the landowner’s son can be found in Mark, chapter 12:6-8, and Luke, chapter 20:13-15, almost word for word.  Finally, this landowner sent his own son to these wicked tenants (ὕστερον δὲ ἀπέστειλεν πρὸς αὐτοὺς τὸν υἱὸν αὐτοῦ).  He said to himself that they would respect his son (Ἐντραπήσονται τὸν υἱόν μου).  Instead, when the tenants saw the son of the landowner (οἱ δὲ γεωργοὶ ἰδόντες τὸν υἱὸν), they said to themselves (εἶπον ἐν ἑαυτοῖς) that he was the heir (Οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ κληρονόμος).  They were going to kill him (δεῦτε ἀποκτείνωμεν αὐτὸν), thinking that they would get his inheritance (καὶ σχῶμεν τὴν κληρονομίαν αὐτοῦ).  They were really dumb.  Thus, they seized his son (καὶ λαβόντες αὐτὸν) and cast him out of the vineyard (ἐξέβαλον ἔξω τοῦ ἀμπελῶνος), where they killed him (καὶ ἀπέκτειναν).  The meaning of this parable was becoming clearer.  The landowner was God the Father.  The tenants were the Jewish religious leaders.  The slaves were the Israelite prophets.  Jesus was the son of the Father.  He was killed outside of Jerusalem, the vineyard.  Clearly, Jesus would not have to explain this parable to his disciples and apostles.

Christian Shared Experiences

A believing community has a creed, a code, and a ceremony that they share.  Roman Catholics respect their teachers, who are presumed to be telling the truth, so that there is docility to Church teaching, admitting the ability to be taught.  There are central beliefs which all Catholics must give the fullest level of assent, the defined dogma, such as the Trinity, One God with three persons, and belief in Jesus Christ, two natures both divine and human.  Jesus was a real person who died and rose from the dead.  The magisterium comes in the form of papal documents and ecumenical worldwide councils.

Jesus of History

What do we know about Jesus of Nazareth as absolute?  Jesus was a real Jewish boy born to a Jewish mother during the Roman occupation of Palestine.  He grew up in Nazareth in the Galilee area. sometime in the early first century between 6 BCE-30 CE.  John the Baptist baptized Jesus before he began to teach about a kingdom.  After his death on the cross, his followers or disciples proclaimed that he had risen from the dead.  There is a general respect for this good man Jesus from all religious and non-religious people.  The Jesus of history is the most studied historical individual, since more has been written about him than any other person.  Most people whether they believe in Jesus as a religious figure or not, hold these simple verifiable generic facts.

The self-exaltation of the king (Dan 11:36-11:37)

“The king

Shall act

As he pleases.

He shall exalt himself.

He shall consider himself

Greater than any god.

He shall speak

Horrendous things

Against the God of gods.

He shall prosper

Until the period of wrath

Is completed.

What is determined

Shall be done.

He shall pay no heed

To the gods

Of his ancestors,

Or to the one beloved

By women.

He shall not pay respect

To any other god.

He shall consider himself

Greater than all.”

Gabriel continued to tell Daniel about King Antiochus IV, who acted as he pleased. He exalted himself. He believed that he was greater than any god. He even spoke horrendous things against the God of gods, the Israelite God. He would continue to prosper, until the time of wrath was completed. This arrogant king did not even pay homage to the gods of his ancestors, or to the gods that women loved. He did not pay respect to any other gods. He seemed to have been intrigued by the Greek gods and wanted to be a god himself. He considered himself greater than any of the other gods.