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Mark 12:13-34 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

God and Caesar

13 Then they sent some of the Pharisees and the Herodians to Him to trap Him by what He said.[a] 14 When they came, they said to Him, “Teacher, we know You are truthful and defer to no one, for You don’t show partiality[b] but teach truthfully the way of God. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar or not? 15 Should we pay, or should we not pay?”

But knowing their hypocrisy, He said to them, “Why are you testing Me? Bring Me a denarius to look at.” 16 So they brought one. “Whose image and inscription is this?” He asked them.

“Caesar’s,” they said.

17 Then Jesus told them, “Give back to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” And they were amazed at Him.

The Sadducees and the Resurrection

18 Some Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to Him and questioned Him: 19 “Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies, leaves his wife behind, and leaves no child, his brother should take the wife and produce offspring for his brother.[c] 20 There were seven brothers. The first took a wife, and dying, left no offspring. 21 The second also took her, and he died, leaving no offspring. And the third likewise. 22 So the seven[d] left no offspring. Last of all, the woman died too. 23 In the resurrection, when they rise,[e] whose wife will she be, since the seven had married her?”[f]

24 Jesus told them, “Are you not deceived because you don’t know the Scriptures or the power of God? 25 For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage but are like angels in heaven. 26 Now concerning the dead being raised—haven’t you read in the book of Moses, in the passage about the burning bush, how God spoke to him: I am the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob?[g] 27 He is not God of the dead but of the living. You are badly deceived.”

The Primary Commands

28 One of the scribes approached. When he heard them debating and saw that Jesus answered them well, he asked Him, “Which command is the most important of all?”[h]

29 “This is the most important,”[i] Jesus answered:

Listen, Israel! The Lord our God, the Lord is One.[j] 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.[k][l]

31 “The second is: Love your neighbor as yourself.[m] There is no other command greater than these.”

32 Then the scribe said to Him, “You are right, Teacher! You have correctly said that He is One, and there is no one else except Him. 33 And to love Him with all your heart, with all your understanding,[n] and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself, is far more important than all the burnt offerings and sacrifices.”

34 When Jesus saw that he answered intelligently, He said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And no one dared to question Him any longer.


  1. Mark 12:13 Lit trap Him in (a) word
  2. Mark 12:14 Lit don’t look on the face of men; that is, on the outward appearance
  3. Mark 12:19 Gn 38:8; Dt 25:5
  4. Mark 12:22 Other mss add had taken her and
  5. Mark 12:23 Other mss omit when they rise
  6. Mark 12:23 Lit the seven had her as a wife
  7. Mark 12:26 Ex 3:6,15-16
  8. Mark 12:28 Lit Which command is first of all?
  9. Mark 12:29 Other mss add of all the commands
  10. Mark 12:29 Or The Lord our God is one Lord.
  11. Mark 12:30 Other mss add This is the first commandment.
  12. Mark 12:30 Dt 6:4-5; Jos 22:5
  13. Mark 12:31 Lv 19:18
  14. Mark 12:33 Other mss add with all your soul

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