Matthew 21

Chapter 21

21:1 And 1 when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethphage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples,

(1) Christ by his humility, triumphing over the pride of this world, ascends to true glory by the shame of the cross.
21:3 And if any [man] say ought unto you, ye shall say, The Lord hath need of them; and straightway a he will send them.
(a) He that will say anything to you will let them go, that is, the ass and the colt.
21:5 Tell ye the b daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass.
(b) The city of Sion. This is a Hebrew idiom, common in the Lamentations of Jeremiah.
21:7 And brought the ass, and the colt, and put on them their c clothes, and they set [him] d thereon.
(c) Their uppermost garment.
(d) Upon their garments, not upon the ass and the colt.
21:9 And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, e Hosanna to the Son of David: f Blessed [is] he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest.

(e) This was an ancient kind of cry, which they voiced in the feast of Tabernacles, when they carried boughs according as God commanded; ( Leviticus 23:40 ). And the word is corruptly made of two, for we should say, "Hoshiang-na", which is as much as to say, "Save I pray thee".
(f) Well is it to him that comes in the Name of the Lord, that is to say, whom the Lord has given us for our King.
21:10 And when he was come into Jerusalem, g all the city was moved, saying, Who is this?
(g) That is, all the men of Jerusalem were moved.
21:15 2 And when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying in the temple, and saying, Hosanna to the Son of David; they were sore displeased,
(2) Those that should be masters of godliness are the ones that envy most the glory of Christ: but in vain.
21:16 And said unto him, Hearest thou what these say? And Jesus saith unto them, Yea; have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast h perfected praise?
(h) You have made most perfect. We read in David, "Thou hast established" or "grounded", and if the matter is considered well, the evangelist says here the same thing, for that which is most perfect is stable and sure.
21:17 3 And he left them, and went out of the city into Bethany; and he lodged there.
(3) Christ does in this way forsake the wicked, for he has a consideration and regard for his Church.
21:18 4 Now in the morning as he returned into the city, he hungered.
(4) Hypocrites will at length have their masks discovered, and any false faces taken away.
21:21 5 Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and i doubt not, ye shall not only do this [which is done] to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done.
(5) How great the force of faith is.
(i) The Greek word signifies a fixing or wavering of mind, so that we cannot tell which way to take.
21:23 6 And when he was come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came unto him as he was teaching, and said, By what k authority doest thou these things? and who gave thee this authority?
(6) Against those who neglect the doctrine and bind the calling and vocation to an ordinary succession, going about by that false pretext, to stop Christs mouth.
(k) Or by what power.
21:24 And Jesus answered and said unto them, I also will ask you l one thing, which if ye tell me, I in like wise will tell you by what authority I do these things.
(l) One thing, that is to say, I will ask you one thing first before I answer your questions.
21:25 The m baptism of John, whence was it? from n heaven, or of men? And they o reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say unto us, Why did ye not then believe him?

(m) The preaching of John is called by the figure "baptism" because he preached the baptism of repentance, etc.; ( Mark 1:4 ; Acts 19:3 ).
(n) From God, and so it is plainly seen how these are set one against another.
(o) Beat their heads about it, and mused, or laid their heads together.
21:31 Whether of them twain did the will of [his] father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots p go into the kingdom of God before you.
(p) They hurry to the kingdom of God and you go slowly, so that you should at least have followed their example. Mark then that this word, "go into", is improperly taken in this place because none of them followed Christ.
21:32 For John came unto you in the q way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen [it], repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.
(q) Living uprightly, being of good and honest behaviour; For the Hebrews use this word "way" for life and manners.
21:33 8 Hear another parable: There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a r tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country:
(8) Those men are often the cruellest enemies of the Church, to whose faithfulness it is committed: But the vocation of God is neither tied to time, place, nor person.
(r) Made the place strong: for a tower is the strongest place of a wall.
21:38 But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us s seize on his inheritance.
(s) Literally, "let us hold it fast".
21:41 They say unto him, He will t miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out [his] vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.
(t) A kind of proverb, showing what punishment the wicked are worthy of.
21:42 Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the u builders rejected, the same is x become the y head of the corner: z this is the Lords doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?
(u) Master builders, who are chief builders of the house, that is of the Church.
(x) Began to be.
(y) The chiefest stone in the corner is called the head of the corner: which bears up the couplings or joints of the whole building.
(z) That matter (in that the stone which was cast away is made the head) is the Lords doing which we behold and greatly marvel at.
21:43 Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the a fruits thereof.

(a) They bring forth the fruits of the kingdom of God, who bring forth the fruit of the Spirit, and not of the flesh, ( Galatians 5:16-26 ).
21:44 And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will b grind him to powder.
(b) As chaff used to be scattered with the wind, for he uses a word which properly signifies separating the chaff from the corn with winnowing, and to scatter it abroad.
21:46 9 But when they sought to lay hands on him, they feared the multitude, because they took him for a prophet.
(9) The wicked can do nothing but what God wills.