Luke 20

1 One day, as Yeshua was teaching the people at the Temple, making known the Good News, the head cohanim and the Torah-teachers, along with the elders, came up to him
2 and said, "Tell us, what s'mikhah do you have that authorizes you to do these things? Who gave you this s'mikhah?"
3 He answered, "I too will ask you a question. Tell me,
4 the immersion of Yochanan -- was it from Heaven or from a human source?" T
5 hey discussed it among themselves, saying, "If we say, `From Heaven,' he will say, `Then why didn't you believe him?'
6 But if we say, `From a human source,' all the people will stone us, because they're convinced that Yochanan was a prophet."
7 So they answered, "We don't know where it came from."
8 Yeshua said to them, "Then I won't tell you by what s'mikhah I do these things."
9 Next Yeshua told the people this parable: "A man planted a vineyard, rented it to tenant-farmers and went away for a long time.
10 When the time came, he sent a servant to the tenants to receive his share of the crop from the vineyard; but the tenants beat him up and sent him away empty-handed.
11 He sent another servant; they beat him too, insulted him and sent him away empty-handed.
12 He sent yet a third; this one they wounded and threw out.
13 "Then the owner of the vineyard said, `What am I to do? I will send my son, whom I love; maybe they will respect him.'
14 But when the tenants saw him, they discussed it among themselves and said, `This is the heir; let's kill him, so that the inheritance will be ours!'
15 And they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. "Now what will the owner of the vineyard do to them?
16 He will come and put an end to those tenants and give the vineyard to others!" When the people heard this, they said, "Heaven forbid!"
17 But Yeshua looked searchingly at them and said, "Then what is this which is written in the Tanakh, `The very rock which the builders rejected has become the cornerstone'?
18 Whoever falls on that stone will be broken in pieces; but if it falls on him, he will be crushed to powder!"
19 The Torah-teachers and the head cohanim would have seized him at that very moment, because they knew that he had aimed this parable at them, but they were afraid of the people.
20 So they kept a close watch on the situation. They sent spies who hypocritically represented themselves as righteous, so that they might seize hold of something Yeshua said, as an excuse to hand him over to the jurisdiction and authority of the governor.
21 They put to him this sh'eilah: "Rabbi, we know that you speak and teach straightforwardly, showing no partiality but really teaching what God's way is.
22 Does Torah permit us to pay taxes to the Roman Emperor or not?"
23 But he, spotting their craftiness, said to them,
24 "Show me a denarius! Whose name and picture does it have?" "The Emperor's," they replied.
25 "Then," he said to them, "give the Emperor what belongs to the Emperor. And give God what belongs to God!"
26 They were unable to trap him by anything he said publicly; indeed, amazed at his answer, they fell silent.
27 Some Tz'dukim, who say there is no resurrection, came to Yeshua
28 and put to him a sh'eilah: "Rabbi, Moshe wrote for us that if a man dies leaving a wife but no children, his brother must take the wife and have children to preserve the man's family line.
29 Now there were seven brothers. The first took a wife and died child less,
30 then the second
31 and third took her, and likewise all seven, but they all died without leaving children.
32 Lastly, the woman also died.
33 In the Resurrection, which one's wife will she be? For all seven were married to her."
34 Yeshua said to them, "In this age, men and women marry;
35 but those judged worthy of the age to come, and of resurrection from the dead, do not get married,
36 because they can no longer die. Being children of the Resurrection, they are like angels; indeed, they are children of God.
37 "But even Moshe showed that the dead are raised; for in the passage about the bush, he calls ADONAI `the God of Avraham, the God of Yitz'chak and the God of Ya`akov.'
38 Now he is not God of the dead, but of the living -- to him all are alive."
39 Some of the Torah-teachers answered, "Well spoken, Rabbi."
40 For they no longer dared put to him a sh'eilah.
41 But he said to them, "How is it that people say the Messiah is David's son?"
42 For David himself says in the book of Psalms,
43 `ADONAI said to my Lord, "Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool." '
44 David thus calls him `Lord.' So how can he be David's son?"
45 Within the hearing of all the people, Yeshua said to his talmidim,
46 "Watch out for the kind of Torah-teachers that like to walk around in robes and be greeted deferentially in the marketplaces, the kind that like to have the best seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at banquets,
47 the kind that swallow up widows' houses while making a show of davvening at great length. Their punishment will be all the worse!"

Luke 20 Commentary

Chapter 20

The priests and scribes question Christ's authority. (1-8) The parable of the vineyard and husbandmen. (9-19) Of giving tribute. (20-26) Concerning the resurrection. (27-38) The scribes silenced. (39-47)

Verses 1-8 Men often pretend to examine the evidences of revelation, and the truth of the gospel, when only seeking excuses for their own unbelief and disobedience. Christ answered these priests and scribes with a plain question about the baptism of John, which the common people could answer. They all knew it was from heaven, nothing in it had an earthly tendency. Those that bury the knowledge they have, are justly denied further knowledge. It was just with Christ to refuse to give account of his authority, to those who knew the baptism of John to be from heaven, yet would not believe in him, nor own their knowledge.

Verses 9-19 Christ spake this parable against those who resolved not to own his authority, though the evidence of it was so full. How many resemble the Jews who murdered the prophets and crucified Christ, in their enmity to God, and aversion to his service, desiring to live according to their lusts, without control! Let all who are favoured with God's word, look to it that they make proper use of their advantages. Awful will be the doom, both of those who reject the Son, and of those who profess to reverence Him, yet render not the fruits in due season. Though they could not but own that for such a sin, such a punishment was just, yet they could not bear to hear of it. It is the folly of sinners, that they persevere in sinful ways, though they dread the destruction at the end of those ways.

Verses 20-26 Those who are most crafty in their designs against Christ and his gospel, cannot hide them. He did not give a direct answer, but reproved them for offering to impose upon him; and they could not fasten upon any thing wherewith to stir up either the governor or the people against him. The wisdom which is from above, will direct all who teach the way of God truly, to avoid the snares laid for them by wicked men; and will teach our duty to God, to our rulers, and to all men, so clearly, that opposers will have no evil to say of us.

Verses 27-38 It is common for those who design to undermine any truth of God, to load it with difficulties. But we wrong ourselves, and wrong the truth of Christ, when we form our notions of the world of spirits by this world of sense. There are more worlds than one; a present visible world, and a future unseen world; and let every one compare this world and that world, and give the preference in his thoughts and cares to that which deserves them. Believers shall obtain the resurrection from the dead, that is the blessed resurrection. What shall be the happy state of the inhabitants of that world, we cannot express or conceive, ( 1 Corinthians. 2:9 ) are entirely taken up therewith; when there is perfection of holiness there will be no occasion for preservatives from sin. And when God called himself the God of these patriarchs, he meant that he was a God all-sufficient to them, ( Genesis 17:1 ) , their exceeding great Reward, ( Genesis 15:1 ) . He never did that for them in this world, which answered the full extent of his undertaking; therefore there must be another life, in which he will do that for them, which will completely fulfil the promise.

Verses 39-47 The scribes commended the reply Christ made to the Sadducees about the resurrection, but they were silenced by a question concerning the Messiah. Christ, as God, was David's Lord; but Christ, as man, was David's son. The scribes would receive the severest judgement for defrauding the poor widows, and for their abuse of religion, particularly of prayer, which they used as a pretence for carrying on worldly and wicked plans. Dissembled piety is double sin. Then let us beg of God to keep us from pride, ambition, covetousness, and every evil thing; and to teach us to seek that honour which comes from him alone.

Luke 20 Commentaries

Complete Jewish Bible Copyright 1998 by David H. Stern. Published by Jewish New Testament Publications, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by permission.