Vine Growers and Wicked Tenants – Jesus Tells a Parable in Mark

Vine Growers and Wicked Tenants
Parable of the Vine Growers and Wicked Tenants

My mother used to say; “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.” Of course, this is an old saying but, it’s what we sometimes do, isn’t it?

Jesus teaches us to be kind to others. He also teaches us to be fair in our personal or business matters.

The wicked tenants were neither, as we will learn in the Bible study below.

This parable from Mark, told by Jesus tells about the wicked tenants who killed or beat all the servants sent to them.

It is also a story about how Christ came and that He would die to save us.

According to the parable of the wicked tenants and the wine growers, Christ tells a complete story of:

  • Israel,
  • the prophets,
  • the religious leaders
  • and the plot to kill Him.

Where do we fit in as His church?

Jesus Tells the Parable of the Vine Growers & the Wicked Tenants – Mark 12

And He began to speak to them in parables:

“A man planted a vineyard and put a wall around it, and dug a vat under the wine press and built a tower, and rented it out to vine-growers and went on a journey.

At the harvest time he sent a slave to the vine-growers, in order to receive some of the produce of the vineyard from the vine-growers.

They took him, and beat him and sent him away empty-handed.

Again he sent them another slave, and they wounded him in the head, and treated him shamefully.

And he sent another, and that one they killed; and so with many others, beating some and killing others.

He had one more to send, a beloved son; he sent him last of all to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’

But those vine-growers said to one another, ‘This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and the inheritance will be ours!’

They took him, and killed him and threw him out of the vineyard.

What will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and destroy the vine-growers, and will give the vineyard to others. Have you not even read this Scripture:

‘The stone which the builders rejected,

This became the chief corner stone;

This came about from the Lord,

And it is marvelous in our eyes’?”

And they were seeking to seize Him, and yet they feared the people, for they understood that He spoke the parable against them.

And so they left Him and went away. ~ Mark 12:1-12 NASB

Understanding the Wicked Tenants Parable

Just as the people were in the time of Christ, we have a difficult time understanding too. This is why continuous Bible study is necessary for us.

To gain a better understanding, let’s break this down to more simple terms:

  • The vineyard – The nation of Israel. God planted the seed into the hearts and minds of His people so that the rest of the world could be saved.
  • A man planted a vineyard.” – The man, of course, is God.
  • The tenants – The religious leaders who were in-trusted to bring more people to God. But, instead, they crippled or killed those sent to fulfill the law God had given them.
  • The servants – All the prophets, and others who were sent before Christ to give God’s Word.
  • The Son – Personifies Jesus who came at last to save the world from sin. Christ told the parable, enlightening His disciples and exposing the religious leaders for what they really were.

Christ also showed in this parable a prediction of His own death by way of a plot formed by these leaders. This did not deter their plans.

What the Cornerstone Represents

Finally, the cornerstone in verse 10 also refers to Christ. Those involved in building construction are aware that a cornerstone is used to make sure the building is square (straight).

Putting It Together

Vine Growers and Wicked Tenants
“Christ showed in this parable a prediction of His own death by way of a plot formed by these leaders.”

Simply put, Jesus is the cornerstone of the Christian church (not a building, but the people themselves).

He is the one by which we measure ourselves daily.

No, we can never live up to His standards of goodness. And, we cannot live sinless lives.

But, our goal is: Try to become a little better person each day using Jesus as the cornerstone to help make us “straighter“.

So, if we listen, the Holy Spirit will direct our way.

Love in Christ

– Bob

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