until there was only one left—his son whom he loved dearly. The owner finally sent him, thinking, ‘Surely they will respect my son.’
“But the tenant farmers said to one another, ‘Here comes the heir to this estate. Let’s kill him and get the estate for ourselves!’
So they grabbed him and murdered him and threw his body out of the vineyard.
“What do you suppose the owner of the vineyard will do?” Jesus asked. “I’ll tell you—he will come and kill those farmers and lease the vineyard to others.
Didn’t you ever read this in the Scriptures? ‘The stone that the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.
This is the Lord’s doing, and it is wonderful to see.’ ”
The religious leaders wanted to arrest Jesus because they realized he was telling the story against them—they were the wicked farmers. But they were afraid of the crowd, so they left him and went away.
Later the leaders sent some Pharisees and supporters of Herod to trap Jesus into saying something for which he could be arrested.
“Teacher,” they said, “we know how honest you are. You are impartial and don’t play favorites. You teach the way of God truthfully. Now tell us—is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?
Should we pay them, or shouldn’t we?” Jesus saw through their hypocrisy and said, “Why are you trying to trap me? Show me a Roman coin, and I’ll tell you.”
When they handed it to him, he asked, “Whose picture and title are stamped on it?” “Caesar’s,” they replied.