Matthew, chapter 22
The Parable of the Wedding Banquet
Paying the Imperial Tax to Caesar
Marriage at the Resurrection
The Greatest Commandment
Whose Son Is the Messiah?
The Parable of the Wedding Banquet
(Jesus continues teaching
in parables) Jesus spoke to
them again in parables, saying:
(now he tells of a king
planning a banquet for his son)
“The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding banquet
for his son.
(when he sent out, the
guests refused to come) He sent
his servants to those who had been invited to the banquet to tell
them to come, but they refused to come.
(he tried again)
“Then he sent some more servants
and said, ‘Tell those who have been invited that I have prepared
my dinner: My oxen and fattened cattle have been butchered, and
everything is ready. Come to the wedding banquet.'
(but to no avail)
“But they paid no attention and went
off—one to his field, another to his business.
(some dealt harshly with
his servants) The rest seized
his servants, mistreated them and killed them.
(so he had them killed)
The king was enraged. He sent his
army and destroyed those murderers and burned their city.
(so he sends his servants
to find people on the street) “Then
he said to his servants, ‘The wedding banquet is ready, but those
I invited did not deserve to come. So go to the street corners
and invite to the banquet anyone you find.'
(they gather a mixture
of people) So the servants went
out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find,
the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with
(but one ‘guest' had
no wedding clothes) “But when
the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who
was not wearing wedding clothes.
(he challenged him)
He asked, ‘How did you get in here
without wedding clothes, friend?' The man was speechless.
(he was cast out)
“Then the king told the attendants,
‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness,
where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'
(a principle: God's word
goes out to all, but only a few respond and are thus ‘chosen')
“For many are invited, but few are
Jesus next parable is about a banquet and the excuses
people made not to come – a warning to those rejecting God's rule.]
Paying the Imperial Tax to Caesar -
the 1st of several attempts to trap Jesus.
(the Pharisees plot against
Jesus) Then the Pharisees went
out and laid plans to trap him in his words.
(they ‘butter up' Jesus)
They sent their disciples to him
along with the Herodians. “Teacher,” they said, “we know that
you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in
accordance with the truth. You aren't swayed by others, because
you pay no attention to who they are.
(they ask about paying
tax to Caesar [which the people didn't like doing]) Tell
us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay the imperial
tax to Caesar or not?”
(Jesus saw through their
plot) But Jesus, knowing their
evil intent, said, “You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap
(he asks for a Roman
coin) Show me the coin used
for paying the tax.” They brought him a denarius, and he asked
them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?”
(give to Caesar what
is his and give God what is His) “Caesar's,”
they replied. Then he said to them, “So give back to Caesar what
is Caesar's, and to God what is God's.”
(they were amazed and
left him) When they heard this,
they were amazed. So they left him and went away.
Jesus overcomes the trap laid for him by the Pharisees
– getting him to rebel against Caesar or be seen to be for Caesar
and against the people.]
Marriage at the Resurrection -
the 2nd attempt to trap Jesus.
(Sadducees came to trap
him) That same day the Sadducees,
who say there is no resurrection, came to him with a question.
(they state Moses' law
of succession) “Teacher,” they
said, “Moses told us that if a man dies without having children,
his brother must marry the widow and raise up offspring for him.
(they spin a tale of
a widow) Now there were seven
brothers among us. The first one married and died, and since he
had no children, he left his wife to his brother. The same thing
happened to the second and third brother, right on down to the
seventh. Finally, the woman died.
(they then question about
the situation at the resurrection [though not believing in it])
Now then, at the resurrection, whose
wife will she be of the seven, since all of them were married
(Jesus declares their
ignorance) Jesus replied, “You
are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power
(marriage is for now,
not for heaven) At the resurrection
people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will
be like the angels in heaven.
(he refers them to scripture)
But about the resurrection of the
dead—have you not read what God said to you,
(God is eternally present,
God of living and dead) ‘I am
the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob'?
[Exo 3:6] He is not
the God of the dead but of the living.”
(this creates astonishment
in his listeners) When the crowds
heard this, they were astonished at his teaching.
Jesus next has to reject the teaching of the Sadducees
as they also sought to trap him with a difficult question.]
The Greatest Commandment -
the 3rd attempt to trap Jesus.
(the Pharisees will not
give up) Hearing that Jesus
had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together.
(they send an expert
in the law) One of them, an
expert in the law, tested him with this question:
(they ask about the greatest
commandment) “Teacher, which
is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
(Jesus points them to
Deut 6:5) Jesus replied: “‘Love
the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and
with all your mind.' [Deut 6:5] This
is the first and greatest commandment.
(then to Lev 19:18)
And the second is like it: ‘Love
your neighbour as yourself.' [Lev 19:18]
(these two are at the
heart of the whole Law) All
the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Jesus has to answer the next confrontation by a teacher
of the law about which is the greatest commandment.]
Whose Son Is the Messiah? –
(as they gather, Jesus
questions them) While the Pharisees
were gathered together, Jesus asked them,
(whose son is the Messiah.
David's, they say) “What do
you think about the Messiah? Whose son is he?” “The son of David,”
(but how come David calls
the Messiah Lord) He said to
them, “How is it then that David, speaking by the Spirit, calls
him ‘Lord'? For he says,
(that's what scripture
shows) “‘The Lord said to my
Lord: “Sit at my right hand until I put your enemies under
your feet.”' [Psa 110:1]
(if he's David's lord,
how can he be his son?) If then
David calls him ‘Lord,' how can he be his son?”
(this silenced them)
No one could say a word in reply,
and from that day on no one dared to ask him any more questions.
Jesus takes the initiative and challenges the Pharisees
about their understanding of just who the Messiah is.]
to Chapter 23