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최중현 교수(롬한인장로교회) 영어설교- The Lord’s Heart for the Widow’s offering (Luke …

김영애 기자

The Lord’s Heart for the Widow’s offering (Luke 21:1-6)

 

 

1. Today’s text is the Lord’s word regarding [the widow’s offering], which Mark also deals with in Mark 12.

 

(1) First, let’s look at the content of today’s text. In verse 1 of the text, the Lord saw rich people and a widow making offering in the temple. And if you look at verse 3, you will see that the poor widow gave more in offering than the rich. So how can a widow’s two copper coins be more than the rich man’s offering? If you look at verse 4, it is a matter of content, not amount, because the widow gave all of her living expenses. So he praised the widow’s offering.

 

 

(2) Then why was the Lord, so interested in the widow’s offering? That’s because the widow’s appearance in today’s text was compared to the death of the Lord. That’s right. The Lord’s appearance as a ransom sacrifice for us was because it was the Lord’s dedication of giving everything, like a poor widow who gave all of her living expenses. So he emphasized all living expenses. In fact, the value of two copper coins at the time was only 1/64th of a denarius. So let’s do math. Even if it was two small copper coins, it was only 1 dollar and 50 cents at most. But if $1.50 was all she had to live on, how harsh would this woman’s life be? Nevertheless, if she gave all of her living expenses as an offering, that would be a truly precious act of faith.

 

 

(3) But when I looked at this widow’s offering, I asked this question.

 

1) First, how does the Lord view the offering, which is all of living expenses?

 

2) The second offering was given in secret, so how did the Lord know the amount?

 

3) And if all living expenses were the widow’s entire possessions, how did this widow live after making the offering?

 

4) Nevertheless, I looked into the history of Israel at the time because I thought that if the Lord had emphasized this widow’s offering so much, there must have been another clear message there. So today, we would like to receive grace together under the title [The Lord’s heart for the widow’s offering].

 

 

2. First, let’s start with the message the Lord wants to convey in today’s text.

 

(1) At that time, a temple tax was being imposed in Jewish society.

 

If you look at verse 1 of the text, you can see that the Lord deliberately went to the temple. This is because the Lord had something he wanted to point out about the temple at that time. Everyone, let’s look at the history of the Israelite temple. When it comes to temples, isn’t the best temple built by Solomon? However, in 586 BC, Babylon invaded and the temple was destroyed. Then, 70 years later, the returned people rebuilt the temple again and established Zerubbabel’s temple. However, as time passed and Herod became king of Israel, he [remodeled] the Jewish temple to win the favor of the Jews. However, the period was a whopping 85 years. So how much hardship must the people have suffered? So the religious leaders came up with a clever trick: they used the temple tax to place 13 offering boxes in the ‘Women’s Court’ within the temple. So, 9 were placed in offering boxes for temple taxes and sacrifices, and 4 were placed in trumpet-shaped offering boxes for the repair and decoration of the temple.

 

 

(2) So what is the purpose of the trumpet-shaped offering box?

 

Every time an offering was made, a sound was made so that all the people could hear the sound. Then, the priest who manages the offering regularly announces the type and amount of the offering. That is why the Lord pointed it out in verse 3. That’s right. The corrupt high priests and religious leaders at the time ended up forcing offerings from poor widows. As we know, the poorest groups in Jewish society at that time were orphans and widows. However, religious leaders even forced them to make offerings. So they set the minimum offering, which is the two copper coins. So, the poor widow in today’s text had no choice but to give her last two copper coins. Everyone, if two copper coins are all she had for living expenses, wouldn’t it be okay to pay just one copper coin? However, because the minimum donation was set at two copper coins, she gave her entire living expenses. So, today in verse 4, the Lord emphasized [all living expenses] while feeling his sorrow.

 

 

(3) But there was an important message there.

 

It was because of the evidence in the previous verse 20:47. Let’s read the previous verse again, 20:47. [They devour the widow’s property and pray long in hypocrisy] That’s right. The Lord pointed out the corruption and corrupt scribes and accused them of their ugly behavior. But which of them is the worst? This is the act of devouring the widow’s property, so He deliberately went to the temple. And he mentioned the widow’s offering, who gave all of her living expenses. What do you think about the background of today’s text?

 

 

3. So today’s author Luke emphasized this message.

 

(1) First, the offering must be something that pleases God. Whenever the Bible talks about giving, there is a word that is not missing. That is, God is pleased only when you give with a [sweet heart], that is, with a [joyful heart]. So, if we look at some examples of offerings, in Acts 4, Moses was pleased with Pilate’s offering, and in Exodus, Moses emphasized the offerings made by the people with joy. But in Acts 5, how did [Anani and Sapphira] give their offerings? And what about Judas Iscariot, who steals offerings? So, the Lord pointed out the offerings in Jewish society at the time of today’s text. And the Lord pointed out that the widow’s offering was like swallowing up the entire family fortune, including all living expenses. So how do those who heard this disprove this? Let’s all look at verse 5 together. That’s right. They countered by saying that the temple could be built beautifully because of such offerings. So what is the Lord’s answer in verse 6? Let’s all look at verse 6 together. That’s right. No matter how beautiful a temple built with forced offerings, if God does not accept it, it will eventually collapse.

 

 

(2) That is why God’s evaluation is important to us.

 

That’s right. A life of faith must be centered on God’s evaluation. So the Lord emphasized [severe judgment] and also mentioned his word [when the day comes]. That’s right. In the last days, it is more important to have faith that pleases God’s heart. In order to do so, I pray that you will become those who listen to God’s voice by acting in the Word of God and following it. God’s judgment is clear. So [when the day came] in 70 AD, the temple in Jerusalem was destroyed by the Roman general Titus, leaving no stone unturned. How miserable is this history? That’s right. God’s judgment is certain. So I pray that we may become victorious in God.

 

 

(3) Lastly, let us become people who look to God.

 

If you look at verse 5 of today’s text, you will see people who only look at the beautiful building. Everyone, what do you do with a temple no matter how extravagantly it is decorated with money? A temple that is not recognized by God will eventually collapse. However, if you look at many people today, there are many who center their religious life on the temple building. That’s why there are many people who brag about building a temple beautifully by going to any lengths to build it.

 

 

[Conclusion]

 

Today the Lord is discussing two types of faith.

 

First, what does our faith look like now in the image of the poor widow’s devotion, giving even her entire living expenses, and in the image of some people boasting of beautiful buildings in verse 5 of the text? That’s right. I pray that you will become people who have the Lord Jesus Christ as the head based on the faith that pleases God. So, I bless you to become people who are praised by everyone for doing a good job and receive glory from God. 

 


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취재: 김영애 기자    기사입력 : 24-02-03 10:15

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