THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO MATTHEW
Explanation Matthew 20:17-34
A. Jesus teaches about status in the kingdom.
1. (17-19) Jesus again reveals the fate waiting for Him at Jerusalem.
a. Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem: This was not a surprise to the disciples. Even if Jesus had not specifically told them, their movement south from Galilee at about the time of the Passover feast made it easy to figure out that Jesus and the disciples would be in Jerusalem for Passover.
b. The Son of Man will be betrayed: Jesus again told the disciples what awaited Him in Jerusalem, but no reaction from the disciples is noted. A reaction might especially be expected when Jesus said He would be betrayed.
1). Seemingly, the disciples did not really listen when Jesus said these things. Their expectation was so focused on Jesus establishing an immediate political kingdom, and these words from Jesus were so contrary to that anticipation, these words just went over their heads.
2). Luke says, they understood none of these things; that is, surely they believed none of them, the saying was hid from them.
3). It is often more agonizing to contemplate the painful future than it is to actually live it. Jesus openly acknowledged the suffering and agony that awaited Him. Jesus thought about how He would fulfill the will of His Father in the future. There was value for Him to look at His coming trial, and to think and say, “I will complete what My Father has given Me to do. I will obey to the end.”
John 17:4 I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.
Can we say that as Jesus and Paul did? : 2 Timothy 4:7-8 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8 Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.
c. Betrayed they will condemn Him to death, deliver Him to the Gentiles to mock and to scourge and to crucify. And the third day He will rise again: Jesus was remarkably specific in this announcement of His fate and foretold many things over which He had no apparent control.
1). Will be betrayed: Conceivably, Jesus could have been delivered to the religious authorities without this. Certainly, He did not arrange His own betrayal. Yet He confidently said it would happen.
2). They will condemn Him to death: Jesus confidently predicted that the religious leaders would do this; yet this was not something He could plan.
3). Deliver Him to the Gentiles: Jesus knew that the religious leaders of the Jews did not have authority to carry out capital punishment themselves; yet sometimes they executed men despite this prohibition (Acts 7:54-60). Yet Jesus was confident that He would be delivered to the Gentiles.
4) It was easy for the Sanhedrin court to charge him and have him crucified because they had done this many times before. The proceedings against Jesus were illegal in that:
· The sentence of condemnation was pronounced in a place forbidden by law…
· The Sanhedrin were unanimous….
· Th balloting was irregular….
· The high priest rent his clothes and ….
· No merits of defense were presented or considered.
5). To mock and to scourge: Jesus predicted these specific aspects of His coming agony – which on a human level He could not arrange.
6). And to crucify: Crucifixion was not the only way criminals were executed under the Romans, yet Jesus knew that this was how He would be put to death. Here is the first mention of the mode of Jesus’ death and of the Gentiles’ part in it (only the Romans could crucify people).
Jesus had to be born and live at their time when the Romans instituted crucifixion.
· Suffering from the disloyalty of friends.
· Suffering from injustice.
· Suffering from deliberate insult.
· Suffering from physical pain.
· Suffering from great humiliation and degradation.
6) And the third day He will rise again: Most important, this was something that Jesus had no apparent control over. Yet He confidently announced to His disciples that this would happen.
2. (20-21) The mother of James and John asks for a place of special status for her sons.
a. The mother of Zebedee’s sons came to Him: This mother of James and John (Matthew 4:21) came with a request that would make a mother proud and the sons very happy.
1). She was a regular member of the disciple group who accompanied Jesus (Matthew 27:56), so her involvement in her sons’ ambitious ideas is hardly surprising.
b. Grant that these two sons of mine may sit: Asking on behalf of her sons (note to whom Jesus replies in Matthew 20:22-23), she wanted prominent positions for them in the messianic administration of Jesus.
1). The right hand and left hand suggest proximity to the King’s person and so a share in his prestige and power.
2) The promise of Matthew 19:28 forms the background to this request; the thrones are already assured, leaving only the question of precedence.
3. (22-23) Jesus answers James and John: when you ask for a place of special status, do you know what you ask for?
a. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink: Their answer (We are able) seems to come a little too quick. Jesus recognized that they didn’t really understand, but they would.
1). But these men slept in Gethsemane, forsook the Master when He was arrested, and one of them at least failed Him at the cross. We can only truly follow Christ after we have been endued with the Spirit of Pentecost. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit gives us power. Power to:
· Reproduce the character of Jesus/Yeshua in us
· Fulfill our destiny
· Opens up the gifts for us
· Be His mouthpiece
· Enablement to heal the sick, cast out demons, etc. Mark 16;17
Any many more enablements…..
b. You will indeed drink My cup and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with: Both James and John had to be baptized in suffering as Jesus was, but their cups and baptisms were different. James was the first martyr among the apostles, and John was the only apostle to not die through martyrdom – though not from a lack of trying.
1). James had to be ready to be the first to die among the disciples; John had to be ready to live the longest Christian life and testimony among them.
c. But to sit on My right hand and on My left is not Mine to give: Jesus here showed remarkable submission to His Father. He would not even claim the right to choose how His servants were rewarded but yield that to His Father.
i. He comes to do not his own will, but the will of him that sent him, and so he correctly says of rank in his kingdom. He said, It is not mine to give. How thoroughly did our Lord take a lowly place for our sakes! In this laying aside of authority, he gives a silent rebuke to our self-seeking. (Spurgeon)
4. (24-28) The disciples’ reaction; Jesus sets forth true greatness.
a. They were greatly displeased: The other ten disciples mistakenly thought that a unique honor had just been bestowed on James and John.
1). The indignation of the ten doubtless sprang less from humility than jealousy plus fear that they might lose out. they were not secure in their relationship with the Lord.
b. Yet it shall not be so among you: Their desire for position and status showed they did not yet know the nature of Jesus in respect to leadership and power. The rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, but it should be different among the people of God.
1). Yet it shall not be so among you is a stinging rebuke to the manner in which the modern church looks to the world for both its substance and style. Plainly, the church isn’t to operate the way the world does.
c. Whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant: In the Kingdom community, status, money, popularity should never be the prerequisites for leadership. Humble service is the great prerequisite, as shown by Jesus’ own ministry.
d. Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve: Real ministry is done for the benefit of those ministered to, not for the benefit of the minister. Many people are in the ministry for what they can receive (either materially or emotionally) from their people instead of for what they can give. I always say, “You are not in the ministry but the ministry is in you.”
e. And to give His life a ransom for many: The death of Jesus – the giving of His life – purchased the freedom of His people. The idea is that His people were in bondage as slaves, and He paid their price
1). Ransom was most commonly used as the purchase price for freeing slaves.” (lytron, ransom) and the preposition anti (for’, literally ‘instead of) point clearly to the idea of his taking our place, not dying for us but as us.
2). These words of Jesus gave rise to an old and complicated theological question: to whom did Jesus pay the ransom? Origen said it was the devil; Gregory of Nyssa objected that this put the devil on the same level as God and allowed the devil to dictate terms to God. Gregory the Great said that Jesus was like a baited hook meant to catch satan, and Peter the Lombard said the cross was like a mousetrap to catch the devil, baited with the blood of Christ. All of this takes the simple picture Jesus gave. A ransom is something paid or given to liberate a man from a situation from which it is impossible to free himself.
3). Most scholars have also recognized in the many a clear reference to Isaiah. By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, for He shall bear their iniquities (Isaiah 53:11) He was numbered with the transgressors, and He bore the sin of many (Isaiah 53:12).
C. Jesus heals two blind men.
1. (29-31) Two blind men gain the attention of Jesus.
a. When they heard that Jesus was passing by: They knew this might be their last time to meet Jesus. They had the desperation appropriate for those who know that today is the day of salvation.
1). It is the end of the account of Jesus’ itinerant ministry, and its setting as they went out of Jericho points forward to the next town on the road, Jerusalem.
b. Have mercy on us, O Lord, Son of David! The earnestness of these men was marvelous; they were desperate to be healed and ignored the crowd that tried to quiet them (they cried out all the more).
c. Lord, Son of David: However, in their desperation they glorified Jesus. They gave Him full honor with this title.
2. (32-34) Jesus heals the two blind men.
a. Jesus stood still: Nothing could stop Him on His journey to Jerusalem; yet He stood still to answer a persistent plea for mercy.
b. What do you want Me to do for you? This is a wonderful, simple question God has not stopped asking. Sometimes we go without when God would want to give us something simply because we will not answer this question, and we do not have because we do not ask (James 4:2). Now we know that we have been given all things that pertain to life and godliness. 2 Pet. 1:3 But we still need to ask. In many passages ask means “aieto”, to make a demand on.
Aiteo: (Strong’s NT 154, pronounced: ahee-teh’-o) Aiteo is the Greek verb translated “ask” or “desire” in many New Testament scriptures related to prayer. It means to ask or demand of one in authority because the one made a promise based on requirements, and now the requirements have been met so the one is now to give the desired promise. It also includes an intensity or focus in your desire to see the request fulfilled.
1). Jesus asked this question with full knowledge that these men were blind. He knew what they needed and what they wanted, but God still wants us to tell Him our needs as a constant expression of our trust and reliance on Him.
c. And they immediately followed Him: This was a great result. Not only were they healed, but they also followed the One who did great things for them.
Matthew 21:1-16 Now when they drew near Jerusalem, and came to [a]Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her. Loose them and bring them to Me. 3 And if anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord has need of them,’ and immediately he will send them.”4 [b]All this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying: 5 “Tell the daughter of Zion, ‘Behold, your King is coming to you, Lowly, and sitting on a donkey, A colt, the foal of a donkey.’ 6 So the disciples went and did as Jesus commanded them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt, laid their clothes on them, [c]and set Him on them. 8 And a very great multitude spread their clothes on the road; others cut down branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 Then the multitudes who went before and those who followed cried out, saying:
“Hosanna to the Son of David! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’ Hosanna in the highest!”10 And when He had come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, “Who is this?” 11 So the multitudes said, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth of Galilee.”
Jesus Cleanses the Temple 12 Then Jesus went into the temple [d]of God and drove out all those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. 13 And He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a ‘den of thieves.’ ” 14 Then the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them. 15 But when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that He did, and the children crying out in the temple and saying, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they were [e]indignant 16 and said to Him, “Do You hear what these are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes. Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have perfected praise’?”
21:1-16 THE TRIUMPHAL ENTRY OF YAH SHUA And when they approach Uri Shelem, and come to Beth Page, about alongside the mountain of Olives. Yah Shua apostolizes two of his disciples, and words to them,Go into this village opposite you: and straightway you find a burro bound with a colt: release, and bring to me: and if humanity words whatever to you, word that our Lord seeks them. — and straightway he apostolizes them there. And this be to fulfill what was worded through the hand of the prophet, wording, Word you the daughter of Sehyun, Behold, your sovereign comes to you — humble and mounted upon a burro — upon a colt the son of a burro. And the disciples go and work as Yah Shua misvahs them and they bring the burrito and the colt, and place their garments upon the colt: and Yah Shua mounts upon it. And an abundance of the congregation is straightening their garments in the way:and others are cutting branches from the trees and placing them in the way: and the congregation going in front and coming after is shouting, and wording, Hoshia Na to the son of David: Eulogized — he coming in the name of Yah Veh: Hoshia Na in the heights. Psalm 118:25, 26 And when he enters Uri Shelem all the city quakes, wording, Who is this? And the congregation is wording, This is Yah Shua the prophet of Nasrath, Gelila.
YAH SHUA CLEANSES THE PRIESTAL PRECINCT And Yah Shua enters the priestal precinct of God Zechar Yah 9:9 Yesha Yah 56:7 and ejects all who merchandise* and merchandise** in the priestal precinct: and upsets the tables of the coinchangers and the seats of them who are merchandising doves. And words to them, It is scribed, My house is called a house of prayer and you work it a grotto of robbers. *buy: ** sell
YAH SHUA CURES THE BLIND AND THE LAME And approaching him in the priestal precinct the blind and lame and he heals them.
And when the Rabbi Priests and Pherisa see the marvels he works: and the lads shouting in the priestal precinct, and wording, Hoshia Na to the son of David — they vilify him. And they word to him, Hear you what these are wording? And Yah Shua words to them, Yes: have you never ever not read, From the mouth of lads and barely birthed you prepare glory? Aramaic NC
Explanations for Matt. 21: 1-16 next lesson.
We will continue with Les.7 next week.
The blessings of the Lord are upon you whether by blood, adoption/sonship or assignment. The blessing of the LORD makes a person rich, and he adds no sorrow with it. Prov. 10:22
David & Mary Sue