Here's a map of today's lesson. These are the locations today's sermon takes place in.
I never realized how close the mount of olives is to the temple. It's around half a kilometer away. I think it really goes to show how large of a stage Jesus preached on and how famous He would have been. In today's lesson Jesus will be preaching in the temple most of the time.
The triumphant entry.
Please see Mark 11, Luke 19, John 12 and Zechariah 9 for important cross references.
Matthew's version of the triumphant entry is the one skeptics like to pick on the most. For more information, please see How many donkeys did Jesus ride on?
For the rest of us beginning the New Testament from its first book, let's jump right in.
21:1 And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethphage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples,
21:2 Saying unto them, Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her: loose them, and bring them unto me.
21:3 And if any man say ought unto you, ye shall say, The Lord hath need of them; and straightway he will send them.
21:4 All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying,
21:5 Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass.
21:6 And the disciples went, and did as Jesus commanded them,
21:7 And brought the ass, and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set him thereon.
21:8 And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way.
Jesus is hailed in the city of Jerusalem as a conquering hero. Him riding two donkeys at once is the sign that the Messiah had come. For some reason the Jews were expecting a warrior.
Brother V did tell you to remember this for later back on day 279
or did you forget?
Jesus is fulfilling the prophecy of Zechariah 9:8-9
Jesus in the temple driving out the money changers.
In John 2 this incident is in the beginning of Jesus' ministry. My fellow apologists have suggested that this is something Jesus did more than once. After the incident where Jesus made a whip, they probably ran so he wouldn't whip them again. They were probably thinking, "NOT THIS GUY AGAIN!"
Matthew 21:12 And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves,
Jesus then starts healing the lame and the lepers.
For a contra against this, please see these filthy Jews
who say that the money changing was actually a needed service.
Jesus has now entered Jerusalem as a popular conqueror and has taken over the temple in the center of the city. He then suddenly leaves and travels to Bethany.
17 And he left them, and went out of the city into Bethany; and he lodged there.
(See our map)
It's too bad Josephus doesn't mention this even though he mentions rebels in the countryside who start insurrections. He does mention a group who took over the temple and the city, but this must have been a different event that Josephus didn't notice or failed to mention in Antiquities and Wars of the Jews.
Jesus Curses the fig tree.
This is on the way back into the city going to the temple again from Bethany.
21:18 Now in the morning as he returned into the city, he hungered.
21:19 And when he saw a fig tree in the way, he came to it, and found nothing thereon, but leaves only, and said unto it, Let no fruit grow on thee henceforward for ever. And presently the fig tree withered away.
Some say this is prophetic symbolism
. The tree represents the Jews not accepting Jesus therefore they are cursed and wither away.
Amen! I happen to agree with our friends at Tektonics on this.
Jesus then goes on to tell us that we
can call down the same curses He did.
Matt. 21:21 Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done.
Please curse the gamers, fags, muslims, jews, goths, furries and all others who anger You and me.
Your biggest fan,
Jesus questioned, the parables of two sons and of the tenants.
This is the beginning of Jesus' massive showdown in the temple. It first starts with the chief priests and the elders. You have to remember Jesus was in the temple the day before
turning over tables, driving out the money changers after He marched into town riding one, two or three asses.
23 And when he was come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came unto him as he was teaching, and said, By what authority doest thou these things? and who gave thee this authority?
Jesus tells them that He will not tell them. He invokes John the Baptist's name and that cowers the priests.
The Parable of the Vineyard is Jesus telling the Jews He is going to reject them for rejecting Him.
Matt 21:33Hear another parable: There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country:
The landowner keeps trying to collect the rent from the tenants, but they keep killing his representatives. Finally, the landowner decides that he will send his son to collect the rent. Because if you're dealing with psychopaths who keep killing people trying to collect a bill, you should send your closest of kin. They will be sure to respect that.
21:35 And the husbandmen took his servants, and beat one, and killed another, and stoned another.
21:36 Again, he sent other servants more than the first: and they did unto them likewise.
21:37 But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence my son.
21:38 But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance.
It's clear that this is a reference to the Jews killing the prophets of God and then rejecting and killing Jesus.
And what will the Father's response be to the Jews for rejecting Him? Is Jesus going to say it's okay to reject His temporary sacrifice for us? Not at all.
21:41 They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.
21:42 Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?
But the Jews' loss is our gain!
21:43 Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.
21:44 And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.
For more detail please see Revelation 14:20
starts where 21 left off. Jesus is still in the temple instructing the Chief Priests, Saducees, Pharisees and Elders all at once.
The Parable of the Wedding Banquet
22:1 And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said,
22:2 The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,
22:3 And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.
What do they receive for their refusal to attend and killing the master's other servants who I guess weren't at the wedding either?
22:7 The king was enraged. He sent his army and destroyed those murderers and burned their city.
A prediction of the Roman burning of Jerusalem for the Jews rejecting Jesus or a future of eternal torture in hell for infidels? You decide.
It's clear that the Jews are the servants who were invited to the king's banquet, but they rejected him. Now the king decides he will invite anyone from the streets, like you.
8 Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy.
9 Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.
It wasn't originally the king's idea to invite you, but the people he really wanted to attend refused, so he had to invite you instead. You weren't his first choice. But now that you have been invited, you are required to attend. Not only are you required to attend.... wear something nice.
You can't just profess to be a Christian, you have to live it or else you will be thrown into hell forever.
22:11 And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:
22:12 And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.
22:13 Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness, there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
22:14 For many are called, but few are chosen.
Many are called but few are chosen.
I can't stress this enough. Heaven is going to an exclusive club that few people will get into. Could you be one of them?
Paying the Imperial Tax to Caesar
Do we know this one? Jesus says to render unto Him what is God's and render unto Caesar what is his.
Any questions? If you want me to go over this more in depth, I'll be glad to in the comments.
Kent Hovind being booked for tax evasion.
Marriage at the Resurrection
More of the showdown in the temple. Jesus has taken all comers and beaten them with the scriptures. His next opponents are the Saducees.
I'll allow Matthew to explain.
Matthew 22:23 The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him,
The Sadducees don't believe in life after death. They believe in the Law for the sake of the Law to divert God's wrath away from them and to receive His blessings while they are alive. They also only follow the Torah. They don't read the prophets like Daniel, Ezekiel or Isaiah either.
22:24 Saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.
Each brother dies and is required to marry the first brother's wife. The Saducees want to know how this will work in the afterlife. Whose wife will she be?
Jesus gives them a verbal roundhouse kick to the face. He tells the Saducees that they don't know their scriptures and they are ignorant. I can't tell you how many times I have had to put the unsaved trash here in their place with this same argument.
22:29 Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.
The answer is none of the above. In heaven there will be no sex or marriage.
22:30 For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven.
Jesus then finishes them off with a quote from the Torah, which they profess to follow.
22:32 I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.
Surprisingly enough, the entire crowd clearly thought Jesus to be the winner of that match.
22:33 And when the multitude heard this, they were astonished at his doctrine.
The two most important commandments.
So many devout, yet clueless Christians think these sayings originated with Jesus, but they have never taken the time to see what He is saying into a larger context.
Now that the Chief Priest, the Elder priests and the Saducees have all been soundly defeated in the Temple, it is the Pharisees turn to have Jesus instruct them in the scriptures.
22:35 Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying,
22:36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
This should be the clue right here that they are debating Old Testament law. Yet, since no one actually reads these serious sermons I will have to no doubt go over this again and again with the idiot John 3:16ers.
22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
22:38 This is the first and great commandment.
22:39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
22:40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Notice that these are the most important two commandments, but they are NOT at all the only commandments. Really if you take all the Old Testament law they always boil down to your relationship with God or your relationship with your neighbors. That's why they are the two most important.
Jesus questions the Pharisees
Finally, it's Jesus' turn to finish the showdown in the Temple. He asks the Pharisees this.
22:42a Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he?
22:42b They say unto him, The son of David.
43 He saith unto them, How then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying,
44 The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool? Psalm 101:1
45 If David then call him Lord, how is he his son?
46 And no man was able to answer him a word, neither durst any man from that day forth ask him any more questions.
What have we learned here today? So many things, but my takeaway from today's lesson is never test Jesus on His knowledge of scriptures. We Christians today have a sacred responsibility to know the Word and wield it as a mighty sword.