Read Matthew 21 -- 22
On the Monday preceding His crucifixion, and just one day after His triumphant entry into Jerusalem, Jesus entered (the courts of) the Temple of God, and cast out all that sold and bought in the Temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers . . . And (He) said to them, It is written, My House shall be called the House of Prayer; but you have made it a den of thieves (Matthew 21:12-13; see Isaiah 56:7).
The chief priests were outraged and dispatched a delegation to interrupt Jesus as He was teaching and demanded: By what authority do You do these things? (Matthew 21:23). They were referring to Him accepting all the hosannas and praises that the multitude had given Him as the Messiah, the Son of David and they demanded who gave Him authority to dismiss their money changers. Jesus was a threat to their positions of "authority," and was interfering with their financial profits. For these reasons they conspired to kill Him (see Mark 11:18).
Just as Jesus had announced earlier that He is Lord of the Sabbath, He now made clear that He is also Lord of the Temple. The Temple belonged to God who was standing in their midst but they refused to recognize Him. The cleansing of the Temple illustrated the cleansing that Christ brings into our lives through His atoning blood.
After pronouncing His judgment upon the Temple activities, Jesus spoke to them again by parables, and said, The Kingdom of Heaven is like a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, And sent forth his servants to call them who were invited to the wedding. . . . But they made light of it, and went their ways. . . . And the remnant took his servants . . . and slew them. . . . When the king heard of it . . . he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers. Then he said to his servants, The wedding is ready. . . . Go therefore into the highways, and as many as you find, bid to the marriage. . . . And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man who did not have on a wedding garment: And he said . . . to the servants . . . cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 22:1-13). Because eternal separation from God is so final and so terrifying, Jesus said more about the torments of eternal hell than all the writers of the New Testament combined.
The wedding garment is symbolic of the new life in Christ and is a free gift to all who truly have turned from the old life of sin. Let us therefore cast off the works of darkness. . . . And put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof (Romans 13:12,14). In this parable, Jesus exposes all who assume they are good enough for Heaven since they have responded to the call to attend the wedding and there was nothing else required. Seeing you have put off the old man with his deeds; And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him (Jesus Christ) that created him. . . . Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom (Colossians 3:9-10,16).
Word Studies: 21:2 over against means ahead, in front of; 21:8 strawed means to scatter straw; 21:33 husbandmen means tenant farmers; 21:42 The Stone . . . is become the Head of the corner means Christ (Psalms 118:22-23) who is the Chief Cornerstone.
For Matthew 21:5: See Isa. 62:11; Zech. 9:9. Matt. 21:9: See Psa. 118:26. Matt. 21:13: See Isa. 56:7; Jer. 7:11. Matt. 21:16: See Psa. 8:2. Matt. 21:33: See Psa. 80:8; Isa. 5:1-2. Matt. 21:42: See Psa. 118:22-23. Matt. 22:24: See Deut. 25:5. Matt. 22:32: See Ex. 3:6. Matt. 22:37: See Deut. 6:5. Matt. 22:39: See Lev. 19:18. Matt. 22:44: See Psa. 110:1.
Government Official: Sen. Trent Lott (MS) · Pray for Adam Lock and the Bible Pathway International Shortwave Radio Broadcasts on WWCR, Nashville TN · Pray for the Bible Pathway International Radio broadcast in honor of Dr. John A. Hash and Family · Country: Burkina Faso (11 million) in western Africa · Major languages: French and Sudanic tribal languages · Religious freedom · 48% Muslim; 33% belief in false gods, idolatry, and heathenism; 14% Roman Catholic; 5% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Ask the Lord for ways to share His love with others (Hebrews 6:10).
Memory Verse for the Week: Ephesians 5:21