Essential Jesus - Online Bible Study #32

Peter Jensen

Archbishop Peter Jensen’s weekly online series on The Essential Jesus (the gospel of Luke). In each study the Archbishop will lead us through the book we intend on giving away to as many people as possible.

STEP 1: READING

Read Luke chapter 20, verses 1-47.

STEP 2: REFLECTION
The King has come to the temple and is teaching. The question of Jesus' authority is at stake. Stung, his adversaries are planning his destruction. The brilliant replies of Jesus have passed into history and helped shape it ('repay to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's'). But by what authority does he speak? Does he have the authority to contradict the Roman authority? Does he have the authority of the scriptures? He confronts them with a brutally critical story. The vineyard (an ancient symbol of Israel), the servants and the Son. His claim to be the Son of God is a claim to the highest authority. Notice the reactions around him: confusion, dismay, anger, fear, amazement, silence. Jesus has launched a prophetic challenge in Jerusalem, the capital city. Something had to be done. They must heed him, or silence him.

STEP 3: DISCUSSION
1 In what way is Jesus acting in succession to some of the ancient prophets of Israel?

2 What was dangerous to the chief priests and other leaders about the ministry of Jesus? What was the heart of his criticism of the scribes? Is this a problem only for the scribes?

3 In what way to the answers of Jesus demonstrate and enhance his authority?

4 Why did the Sadducees ask their particular question and how did Jesus reply address their beliefs?

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Prepare for the next study by reading Luke chapter 21.