Updated: Jan 3, 2022
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INTRODUCTION. In the temple court of the women, under the shelter of porticoes, there were thirteen chests with trumpet-shaped openings into which the worshippers cast their gifts and contributions. One day near the end of his ministry on earth, Jesus sat in this court near the treasury and observed the people depositing their money in the receptacles.
As Jesus observed the wealthy casting their money into the treasury, He saw a widow casting in two mites. The mite or lepton was a small copper coin, the smallest Jewish coin, and valued at 1/128th part of the Roman denarius; two mites or lepta made a quadrans (W. E. Vine). The Roman denarius was the amount of one day's wage in New Testament times or about seventeen cents. Two mites would therefore be about 1⁄4 of a penny.