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Matthew Chapter 22

Memory verses for this week:  Mat 10:16  Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.


Introduction: In last week’s lesson, we studied about Christ’s entry into Jerusalem according to the scriptures, saw Christ drive out the moneychangers from the temple and purify it, and then closed with a study of two parables.   This week we open with the parable concerning the marriage feast.


I.  Parable of the Marriage Feast

Mat 22:1  And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said,

Mat 22:2  The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,

Mat 22:3  And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.

Jesus continues to speak in parables to the Pharisees as he did in the prior chapter.  This parable is likening the kingdom of heaven unto a king who prepared a marriage for his son.   Many were bidden to the marriage, but those invited would not come.   This of course pictures Israel who had already been given an invitation to come.

Matthew Henry made these comments:

I. Gospel preparations are here represented by a feast which a king made at the marriage of his son; such is the kingdom of heaven, such the provision made for precious souls, in and by the new covenant. The King is God, a great King, King of kings. Now,

1. Here is a marriage made for his son, Christ is the Bridegroom and the church is the bride.  Behold by faith the church of the first-born, that are written in heaven, and were given to Christ by him whose they were; and in them you see the bride, the Lamb’s wife, Rev. 21:9. The gospel covenant is a marriage covenant betwixt Christ and believers, and it is a marriage of God’s making. This branch of the similitude is only mentioned, and not prosecuted here.

2. Here is a dinner prepared for this marriage, v. 4. All the privileges of church-membership, and all the blessings of the new covenant, pardon of sin, the favour of God, peace of conscience, the promises of the gospel, and all the riches contained in them, access to the throne of grace, the comforts of the Spirit, and a well-grounded hope of eternal life. These are the preparations for this feast, a heaven upon earth now, and a heaven in heaven shortly. God has prepared it in his counsel, in his covenant. It is a dinner, denoting present privileges in the midst of our day, beside the supper at night in glory.  [i]


Mat 22:4  Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.

Mat 22:5  But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise:

Mat 22:6  And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them.

Mat 22:7  But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.


Again the father sends out more servants and tells them that the dinner has been prepared and they are desired to come to the feast.   But those called make light of the invitation and do not come.    Some went to their farm, some to his merchandise.   Whatever the world can use to keep us from coming to God, it will offer.   It is our responsibility to get rid of the distractions that weigh us down and keep us from our proper service.   The King in the parable destroys and burns their city.   This act pictures judgment upon Israel and Jerusalem.    It also could point to the destruction that fell upon Jerusalem in 70 AD.

Mat 22:8  Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy.

Mat 22:9  Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.

Mat 22:10  So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests.

The King sent His servant to invite all that they found.   Those who had never been invited were beckoned to come to the wedding feast.  This pictures a turning from Israel, as a whole, and turning to both Jews and Gentiles with the message of salvation.

John 1:12  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

Rev 22:17  And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

Mat 22:11  And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:

Mat 22:12  And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.

Mat 22:13  Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Mat 22:14  For many are called, but few are chosen.

The king has a requirement to attend the wedding feast.  You must be clothed in a wedding garment.  This speaks of the imputed righteousness of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Without the righteousness of Christ, none would enter the kingdom of God.

While these verses in John have a greater teaching about the Jews being led out of Judaism, it still is a good verse to point out how Jesus is the one and only door unto heaven.

John 10:7  Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.

John 10:8  All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.

John 10:9  I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.


II.  Jesus Answers the Herodians

Mat 22:15  Then went the Pharisees, and took counsel how they might entangle him in his talk.

It is sad how the Pharisees, one of the leading religious groups of the day, was never about Christ to learn and seek salvation.  They came and took counsel to try and cause Christ to be confused, and to contradict Himself.   It never happened.   Jesus was God and Omniscient.  (All knowing.) 

Notes on verse 15 from the Scofield bible said this:

Verses 15 - 46 record our Lord's meetings with the representatives of Israel - the Herodians, the Sadducees, and the Pharisees (see 3:7, note). Although He answered their questions and put them to silence (v. 46), they did not repent and turn to Him in faith. The only message left for them was the woes of ch. 23.

Mat 22:16  And they sent out unto him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, Master, we know that thou art true, and teachest the way of God in truth, neither carest thou for any man: for thou regardest not the person of men.

The Herodians and the disciples of the Pharisees are sent to try and trap Christ in His talk.  Notice some of the truths that are mentioned in verse 16 that ‘they’ say in their attempts to confuse our Lord.   Just because people mix some truth with their teachings, does not make them of the Lord.  Always look for variances from the Word of God.

1.  We know that thou art true.

2.  That Christ teaches the way of God in truth.

3.  That He is no respecter of persons.

4.  He regards not the person of men.

Mat 22:17  Tell us therefore, What thinkest thou? Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar, or not?

Mat 22:18  But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, Why tempt ye me, ye hypocrites?

Mat 22:19  Show me the tribute money. And they brought unto him a penny.

Mat 22:20  And he saith unto them, Whose is this image and superscription?

Mat 22:21  They say unto him, Caesar's. Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's.

They question Christ on the tribute money.   Christ is not taken aback by their questions.  He uses a coin with Caesar’s image on it to teach that they were to render unto Caesar the things which belong to Caesar.   And then to render unto God the things which are God’s.  The tithes (our first 10%) belongs to the Lord.    Is God getting the part that he entrusted unto you?   The 90% will surely go a lot farther than we ever dreamed when we give our tithe.   And we should not limit our giving to just tithes, but also bring our gifts and free will offerings.   If you look in the old testament at the examples we have, most Jews gave between 23% and 28% of their money to the Lord.   We certainly are not under the law today, but we are to follow the types and be benevolent in our giving.   God loves a cheerful giver. 

Mat 22:22  When they had heard these words, they marvelled, and left him, and went their way.

Being defeated in their little plan, the Herodians and Pharisees leave and go their way.

III.  Jesus Answers the Sadducees

Mat 22:23  The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him,

Mat 22:24  Saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.

Mat 22:25  Now there were with us seven brethren: and the first, when he had married a wife, deceased, and, having no issue, left his wife unto his brother:

Mat 22:26  Likewise the second also, and the third, unto the seventh.

Mat 22:27  And last of all the woman died also.

Mat 22:28  Therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her.

The Sadducees come to Christ with basically a ridiculous question, but Jesus still took their question and responded with clarity.   You need to remember that this was another attempt to trick Christ, because the Sadducees did not even believe in the resurrection of the dead.   They thought they had come up with such a tough question that no man could answer them.   Their question was about a man who had taken a wife and died leaving no children, and the next oldest brother married the wife according to the rules.   This repeated seven times.  At last, the woman died with no children, and they want to know whose wife will she be in the resurrection.

Mat 22:29  Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.

Mat 22:30  For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven.

Mat 22:31  But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying,

Mat 22:32  I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.

Mat 22:33  And when the multitude heard this, they were astonished at his doctrine.

Jesus answers and tells of the way things will be and the power of God.   Many people make errors because they do not know the word of God.  In the resurrection, they do not marry nor give in marriage.    We are told that he is the God of the living.   It says they were astonished at His doctrine.  He answered them very well.

IV.  Jesus Answers the Pharisees

Mat 22:34  But when the Pharisees had heard that he had put the Sadducees to silence, they were gathered together.

Mat 22:35  Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying,

Mat 22:36  Master, which is the great commandment in the law?

The question the lawyer asks is, “Which is the great commandment in the law?”   Moses had brought down the 10 commandments on two pillars of stone, and they question which is the great commandment.

Mat 22:37  Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

Mat 22:38  This is the first and great commandment.

Mat 22:39  And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

Mat 22:40  On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

Jesus replies with an answer that surely simplifies our Christian requirements.  If you do these two, how can you break any of the others?  He says the first commandment is to love God first and the second was to love our neighbor as ourselves.  The first four of the ten commandments have to do with our relationship with God, while the last six have to do with our relationship with our fellowman.   These two summed those up very well.

J. Vernon McGee said this about the 2 commandments.

These two commandments actually summarized the entire Mosaic Law. The answer of Jesus was so obviously accurate that if the Pharisees had been honest, they would have said, “We have fallen short. We cannot be saved by the Law; we do need a Savior.” And at that time the Lord Jesus, the Savior, was almost under the shadow of the Cross. [ii]


V.  Jesus Questions the Pharisees

Mat 22:41  While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them,

Mat 22:42  Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he? They say unto him, The son of David.

Mat 22:43  He saith unto them, How then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying,

Mat 22:44  The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool?

Mat 22:45  If David then call him Lord, how is he his son?

The Pharisees are asked by Christ “Whose Son is he?”  They answer and say the “Son of David.”   He then questions them with a tougher question… “If he were David’s son, then why did David call him Lord?”   Christ’s physical lineage was through David, but his actual Father was God.

Mat 22:46  And no man was able to answer him a word, neither durst any man from that day forth ask him any more questions.

This sort of ended the testing and questions for the day.   Christ had silenced all the groups with the Word of God and total honesty.    Those who came did not all come in honesty, but Christ always taught the truth.   He was the physical embodiment of truth on earth. 


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Prov 4:18  But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.


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[i]Henry, Matthew, Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Bible, (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers) 1997.

[ii]J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon McGee.