Matthew 22:15-22 Taxes to Caesar

To Caesar what it Caesar's

To Caesar what it Caesar’s

Jesus is still in the temple in Jerusalem. The chief priests and Pharisees have withdrawn from the confrontation. But that doesn’t end the schemes of the Pharisees. Not wanting to have another direct confrontation with Jesus, the Pharisees send their own disciples and a group of Herodians.

I wondered who the Herodians were so I Googoled them. Got Answers.com gave me information on the all the ruling bodies in Jesus time; the Herodians, Pharisees and Sadducees. I invite you to check out what I found if you are interested too. The three groups didn’t agree on a lot of points, but the one thing they had in common was that they wanted Jesus dead. Read more »

Matthew 22:1-14 The Wedding Feast

 

Many are called, few are chosen

Many are called, few are chosen

Jesus is still in the temple in Jerusalem confronting the chief priests and Pharisees. We are in His last week this side of the grave. He is pushing all their buttons to bring them to the place where He needs them to be. Willing to kill Him on His schedule. Ready for round four?

Jesus uses another parable to illustrate God’s relationship with Israel. This time it is about a king and his wedding feast for his son. A definite parallel to God and His wedding feast for His Son. This one will send the Pharisees back to their corner to make a new plan.

The king in our story has prepared a feast for his son. The king sent word to all those whom he wanted in attendance that they were to be ready to come on the date and time of his choosing. This was a select group that he chose to honor with his invitation. The king hadn’t set a concrete date but he had instructed the invited guests to be watching and listening, as preparations were sure to take place well in advance of the actual wedding feast day. Read more »

Matthew 21:33-46 The Wicked Tenants

The Master carefully prepared the vineyard

The Master carefully prepared the vineyard

We are continuing on with Jesus in the temple in Jerusalem. He is still addressing the chief priests who came to challenge His authority. Are you ready for round three? I think we all know who is going to win this one too.

Jesus uses another parable today in His battle. This one is about a landowner and his tenants. Jesus’ story starts out with the master of the house making preparations. The master didn’t simply lease out a piece of land and wait and see what the tenant would do with it, but he cultivated and tended a vineyard until it was productive. He dug ditches around the vineyard to create an irrigation system and a barrier to predators. He built a watchtower to protect it from any enemies. This was a carefully tended and established piece of property. A lot of planning and care went into making this vineyard profitable. Read more »

Matthew 21:28-32 My Two Sons

Which son are you?

Which son are you?

Jesus is continuing His teaching in the temple in Jerusalem. He is also continuing to address the chief priests that came up to challenge His authority. We are ready for round two! My bet is on Jesus.

Jesus returns to using parables with the chief priests. They are skilled enough to understand Jesus’ meaning, and if they weren’t Jesus actually spelled it out for them after He quizzed them. The parable He uses first is about a father and his two sons.

I am going to assume that the sons in this story are young adults and already have some degree of their own life going on outside of the father’s house. My reason for this is that, if these sons were children, I seriously doubt they would get away with the behavior of 1) telling the father no when told to do a job or 2) saying they were going to comply and not. It is easier to see number two happening with children, as it happens a LOT and requires corrective measures. If number one happened with my child, he would find himself on the receiving end of some serious consequences and then would be required to do as he was told anyway. Read more »

Matthew 21:23-27 A Question of Authority

You answer Me first

You answer Me first

Jesus is in Jerusalem teaching in the temple. This is His last week, this side of the grave. He still has a lot to say before He lays His life down. I wish Matthew would have told us what He was teaching about. I would love to drink in every minute of His last week. Was there more urgency in His messages now than before? A lot of people had fallen away because of some of His teachings, but right now in the center of Passover preparations, He had a huge audience. As before, I’m sure some came out of curiosity, others for what they could get from Jesus, and some really wanted to learn from Him.

Jesus has been in the temple for hours. He and His disciples came straight here after arriving in Jerusalem this morning. Jesus has been healing any who came to Him or whom crossed His path. While Jesus is healing the people, a crowd begins to gather. By the time the last person is healed the crowd has grown considerably. Everyone is anxious to see what Jesus will do next. Now that He has their undivided attention, He begins teaching the people. Read more »