Lu 20:1-19. The Authority
of Jesus Questioned, and His Reply—Parable of the Wicked Husbandmen.
(See on Mt 21:23.)
2. these things—particularly the
clearing of the temple.
4. baptism of John—his whole ministry
and mission, of which baptism was the seal.
5. Why then believed ye him not?—that
is, in his testimony to Jesus, the sum of his whole witness.
7. could not tell—crooked, cringing
hypocrites! No wonder Jesus gave you no answer (Mt 7:6). But what dignity and composure does
our Lord display as He turns their question upon themselves!
9-13. vineyard—(See on Lu 13:6). In Mt 21:33
additional points are given, taken literally from Isa 5:2, to fix down the application and sustain
it by Old Testament authority.
husbandmen—the ordinary spiritual
guides of the people, under whose care and culture the fruits of
righteousness might be yielded.
went, &c.—leaving it to the laws
of the spiritual husbandry during the whole length of the Jewish
economy. (See on Mr 4:26.)
10. beat, &c.—(Mt 21:35); that is, the prophets, extraordinary
messengers raised up from time to time. (See on Mt
13. my beloved son—Mark (Mr 12:6) still more affectingly, "Having yet
therefore one son, his well-beloved"; our Lord thus severing Himself
from all merely human messengers, and claiming Sonship in
its loftiest sense. (Compare Heb 3:3-6.)
it may be—"surely"; implying the
almost unimaginable guilt of not doing so.
14. reasoned among themselves—(Compare
Ge 37:18-20; Joh 11:47-53).
the heir—sublime expression of the
great truth, that God's inheritance was destined for, and in due time
to come into the possession of, His Son in our nature (Heb 1:2).
inheritance … ours—and so from
mere servants we may become lords; the deep aim of the
depraved heart, and literally "the root of all evil."
15. cast him out of the
vineyard—(Compare Heb 13:11-13; 1Ki 21:13; Joh
16. He shall come, &c.—This answer
was given by the Pharisees themselves (Mt 21:41), thus pronouncing their own righteous
doom. Matthew alone (Mt 21:43)
gives the naked application, that "the kingdom of God should be taken
from them, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits
thereof"—the great evangelical community of the faithful, chiefly
God forbid—His whole meaning now
bursting upon them.
17-19. written—(in Ps 118:22, 23. See on Lu
19:38). The Kingdom of God is here a Temple, in the erection of
which a certain stone, rejected as unsuitable by the spiritual
builders, is, by the great Lord of the House, made the keystone of the
whole. On that Stone the builders were now "falling" and being "broken"
8:15), "sustaining great
spiritual hurt; but soon that Stone should fall upon them and
grind them to powder" (Da 2:34, 35; Zec 12:3)—in their corporate
capacity in the tremendous destruction of Jerusalem, but
personally, as unbelievers, in a more awful sense still.
19. the same hour—hardly able to
restrain their rage.
Lu 20:20-40. Entangling
Questions about Tribute and the Resurrection—The Replies.
20-26. sent forth—after consulting
22:15) on the best plan.
spies—"of the Pharisees and Herodians"
12:13). See Mr 3:6.
21. we know, &c.—hoping by flattery
to throw Him off His guard.
22. tribute—(See on Mt 17:24).
25. things which be Cæsar's—Putting
it in this general form, it was impossible for sedition itself to
dispute it, and yet it dissolved the snare.
and unto God—How much there is in this
profound but to them startling addition to the maxim, and how
incomparable is the whole for fulness, brevity, clearness, weight!
27-34. no resurrection—"nor angel nor
materialists of the day.
34. said unto them—In Mt 22:29, the reply begins with this important
statement:—"Ye do err, not knowing the Scriptures," regarding the
future state, "nor the power of God," before which a thousand such
difficulties vanish (also Mr 12:24).
36. neither … die any
more—Marriage is ordained to perpetuate the human family; but
as there will be no breaches by death in the future state, this
ordinance will cease.
unto the angels—that is, in the
immortality of their nature.
children of God—not in respect of
character but nature; "being the children of the
resurrection" to an undecaying existence (Ro 8:21, 23). And thus the children of their
Father's immortality (1Ti 6:16).
37, 38. even Moses—whom they had just
quoted to entangle Him.
38. not … of the dead, … for all,
&c.—To God, no human being is dead, or ever will be; but all
sustain an abiding conscious relation to Him. But the "all" here meant
"those who shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world." These
sustain a gracious covenant relation to God, which cannot be
dissolved. In this sense our Lord affirms that for Moses to call
the Lord the "God" of His patriarchal servants if at that moment they
had no existence, would be unworthy of Him. He "would be ashamed
to be called their God, if He had not prepared for them a city" (Heb 11:16). How precious are these glimpses
of the resurrection state!
39. scribes … well said—enjoying
His victory over the Sadducees.
they durst not—neither party, both for
the time utterly foiled.
Lu 20:41-47. Christ Baffles
the Pharisees by a Question about David and Messiah, and Denounces the
41. said, &c.—"What think ye of
Christ [the promised and expected Messiah]? Whose son is He [to be]?
They say unto Him, The son of David. He saith unto them, How then doth
David in spirit [by the Holy Ghost, Mr 12:36] call Him Lord?" (Mt 22:42, 43). The difficulty can only be
solved by the higher and lower—the divine
and human natures of our Lord (Mt 1:23). Mark the testimony here given to the
inspiration of the Old Testament (compare Lu 24:44).
46, 47. Beware, &c.—(See on Mt 23:5; and Lu 14:7).
47. devour, &c.—taking advantage of
their helpless condition and confiding character, to obtain possession
of their property, while by their "long prayers" they made them believe
they were raised far above "filthy lucre." So much "the greater
damnation" awaits them. What a lifelike description of the Romish
clergy, the true successors of "the scribes!"