Last Sunday at CrossHope Chapel we had a rich time in the 21st chapter of Matthew, partly because it was loaded with differing accounts and partly because it was the beginning of Jesus’ final week.
We enjoyed so much interaction as we looked through this chapter that it is kind of hard for me to pull together one or two highlights to share with you. So, instead I’ll give you an overview…
Within this chapter we saw how the Lord was burdened with the religious leaders of Israel and their insistence on resisting the very event they claimed to teach — the coming of the Messiah.
We saw in Matthew 21:1-11 that Jesus entered Jerusalem humbly on a donkey and not with the pomp and circumstance of a king on a warhorse with an entire entourage. The people welcomed Jesus as the promised Messiah but the religious leaders had already rejected Him.
We saw in Matthew 21:12-17 that Jesus was not happy that the money changers turned the place of prayer into “a den of robbers.” John records a similar cleansing of the temple that took place early in Jesus’ ministry and now we have the same situation at the end of His ministry.
We saw in Matthew 21:18-22 that Jesus made an example out of a fig tree that wasn’t bearing fruit, and no doubt it was partially brought about by His disheartened thoughts regarding the religious leaders who were bearing no fruit for the people. Jesus also used this as a lesson for His disciples on praying in faith.
We saw in Matthew 21:23-27 that Jesus was likely getting exhausted with the Pharisees trying to trip Him up, so He turned their ill motive questioning back on them and He shut them up.
We saw in Matthew 21:28-32 that Jesus gave a parable that underscores the importance of behavior over our words, our actions over what we say, and that unlike the Pharisees we should be more concerned with doing the right things than just saying the right things.
We saw in Matthew 21:33-46 that Jesus shares a parable about vineyard tenants which represented the nation of Israel’s rejection of the Messiah and how the work of the gospel will be taken from them and given to the gentile church.
Next Sunday (if the hurricane doesn’t visit us) we will get into chapter 22 of Matthew and pick it up from there because Jesus continues with another parable.
See you Sunday.