Mark 12:1-12 The Parable Of The Wicked Vinedressers.
It is no coincidence that immediately after the apostate religious leadership questioned Jesus’ authority, that “He began to speak to them in parables” (v. 1a). The parables were intended to reveal truth to some and hide it from others. The vineyard here was the LORD’s covenanted people, and the vinedressers were the religious leadership who were entrusted with guiding and protecting them. The goal was for the people to maintain their close covenantal relationship with their LORD, evidenced by bearing fruit. However, every time the owner of the vineyard sent a servant to reap a harvest, such as the LORD sending his prophets, the wicked vinedressers, the apostate religious leadership, would beat the servants and send them away empty handed. Finally, the owner, that is the Father, sent his only Son, but as in the parable, they would ultimately kill him.
Jesus asks and then answers what it is the owner, that is the Father, would ultimately do to these wicked vinedressers. The wicked vinedressers would be destroyed, but the vineyard would be preserved and entrusted to others. Jesus came not to establish a new religion, but to purge the LORD’s covenanted people of an apostate leadership, and fulfill what had been spoken and written in the law and the prophets (Mt. 5:17-20). Jesus was the stone which the builders of the physical temple had rejected, but he became the chief cornerstone of a temple made without hands, that is not the work of men. “This was the LORD’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes” (v. 11; Ps. 118:22-23). True to the parable, the apostate leadership sought to lay hands on Jesus but they did not because they feared the people, who regarded him as a prophet. They feared men instead of God.