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Walk thru Holy Week – Tuesday

April 12, 2017

Tuesday Holy Week by Kerry Green

Read Mark 11:27-12:44

  • longest day in Mark’s story of Jesus’ final week.
  • ⅔ of Tuesday consists of conflict with  temple authorities and their associates.
  • Jesus’ authority is challenged by the chief priests, scribes and elders.


Tuesday morning, as Jesus and his followers return to Jerusalem from nearby Bethany, where they had spent the night.  They see the fig tree “withered away to its roots.”  The fig tree symbolizes Jerusalem and the temple:  Mark juxtaposes the withered fig tree with  a saying about “This mountain”, that is, Mr. Zion, on which the temple stood–being “thrown into the sea.”  

As Tuesday continues, Jesus and his followers arrive in Jerusalem and enter the “temple,” not meaning the sanctuary itself (which was quite small), but the large open-air courts of the temple platform.  This area was often the scene of teaching, and during Passover week it was thronged with pilgrims.  All of Mark 11:27-12:44 happens in this very public setting.  

The authorities and their associates challenge Jesus with a series of questions intended to entrap and discredit him in the presence of the crowd.  Jesus responds in an equally challenging way, sometimes turning the questions back upon them, sometimes directly indicting them.  


  1. Where do you see yourself in this scenario?  Are you standing close to Jesus when he is being challenged?  If so, what is his demeanor? Does he show any emotion?
  2. If you are watching from afar, what do you see?  Is there commotion or is it calm?
  3. Are people whispering, wondering what is going on or are they listening attentively?  What are you doing?
  4. How does Jesus act when confronted?
  5. What are the expressions of the chief priests, scribes and elders when Jesus turns the questions back on them?  Are they mad? Confused?

What do you think?

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