Read Matthew 21
Prophecy fulfulled of Jesus' triumphant entry to Jerusalem (Matt. 21:1-11); defiled Temple, cleansing, His miracles (21:12-15); fig tree cursed (21:18-22). Authority of Jesus (21:23). A heavenly parable: The King's invitation is rejected, his parables expected fruit, marriage feast, importance of knowing Scripture and the great Commandment (22:37-40).
On Monday preceding His crucifixion, and just one day after His triumphant entry into Jerusalem, Jesus went into the Temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought. . . . And said unto them, It is written, My House shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves (Matt. 21:12-13; see Is. 56:7).
The chief priests were outraged and dispatched a delegation to interrupt Jesus as He was teaching, and said, By what authority doest Thou these things? (Matt. 21:23). They were referring to His accepting all the praise that the multitude had given Him as the Messiah, as well as questioning who gave Him authority to dismiss their money changers. They were infuriated and conspired to kill Him (26:4).
The Temple belonged to God, who was was supposed to be in their midst. Jesus' cleansing of the Temple illustrates the cleansing that Christ alone brings into our lives through His atoning blood (26:28; I John 1:7; Rev. 1:5).
After pronouncing His judgment upon the Temple activities, Jesus . . . spake unto them again by parables, and said, The Kingdom of Heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son . . . . The wedding is ready. . . . Go . . . therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. . . . And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment. . . . Then said the king to the servants . . . cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matt. 22:1-2, 8-13).
Because eternal separation from God is so final and so terrifying, Jesus said more about the horrifying torments of eternal hell as a lake of fire (Revelation 20:10) than all the writers of the New Testament combined. In this parable, Jesus exposes all who assume they are good enough for heaven. The Apostle Paul said: There are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers . . . . They profess that they know God; but in works they deny Him, being . . . disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate (Titus 1:10,16).
Thought for Today:
But I will hope continually, and will yet praise Thee more and more (Ps. 71:14).
21:2 over against you shead of you; facing you; 21:8 strawed . . . in the way spread in His path; 21:33 husbandmen penant farmers; 21:42 The Stone . . . is become the Head of the corner Christ (Ps.118:22-23) who is the Chief Cornerstone (Eph. 2:20; I Pet. 2:6).
For Matt. 21:5: See Is. 62:11; Zech. 9:9. Matt. 21:9: See Ps. 118:26. Matt. 21:13: See Is. 56:7; Jer. 7:11. Matt. 21:16: See Ps. 8:2. Matt. 21:33: See Ps. 80:8-9; Is. 5:1-2. Matt. 21:42: See Ps. 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 Ps. 110:1.
Pray for Government Officials: Rep. Artur Davis (AL) and Rep. Tom Perriello (VA) • Country: Cote d'Ivoire (16 million) in western Africa • Major languages: French and over 60 native dialects • Religious freedom • 40% animist; 25% Muslim; 10% Roman Catholic; 5% Protestant • Prayer Suggestion: What a comfort to know that we depend upon His strength (Ps. 71:16).
Memory Verse for the Week: James 5:10