Mattityahu 21

1 1 When they came near to Yerushalayim and arrived at Beit-Pagey on the Mount of Olives, then Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach sent two talmidim,
2 saying to them, Go into the shtetl ahead of you, and immediately you will find a donkey having been tied and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me.
3 And if anyone should say to you anything, you say, HaAdon has need of them. And he will send them immediately.
4 And this took place in order that might be fulfilled the thing spoken by the Navi (Prophet), saying:
5 IMRU LBAT TZIYON! (Tell the Daughter of Zion!) Hinei! Your Melech comes, ANI VROCHEV AL CHAMOR VAL AYIR BEN ATONOT (poor, humble and riding on a donkey and upon a colt, the foal of donkeys YESHAYAH 62:11; ZECHARYAH 9:9).
6 And having accomplished just what Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach had commanded them,
7 they brought the donkey and the colt and they put their garments upon them, and Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach sat upon them.
8 And the very large multitudes spread out their garments on the road, and others were cutting lulavim from the trees, and were spreading them out on the road.
9 And the multitudes going before him and the multitudes following after him were crying out, saying, HOSHAN NAH (Save now, TEHILLIM 118:25-26) to Ben Dovid! BARUCH HABAH BSHEM ADONOI! Hoshannah in the Highest!
10 And when Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach had entered into Yerushalayim, the whole city was stirred, saying, Who is this!?!
11 And the multitudes were saying, This is Yehoshua HaNavi! From Natzeret in the Galil.
12 And Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach arrived at the Beis Hamikdash and expelled the ones selling and buying in the Beis Hamikdash. And he turned over the tishen (tables) of the machalifei hakesafim (money changers) and the chairs of those selling the yonim (doves).
13 And Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach says to them, It has been written, BEITI BEIT TEFILLAH YIKAREI (My House shall be called a House of Prayer, YESHAYAH 56:7), but you are making it into a MEARAT PARITZIM (den of robbers, YIRMEYAH 7:11).
14 And ivrim (blind persons) and pisechim (lame persons) came to Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach in the Beis Hamikdash, and he brought refuah to them.
15 And the Rashei Hakohanim and the Sofrim were indignant, having seen the niflaot (wonders) which Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach accomplished and the yeladim shouting in the Beis Hamikdash, Hoshannah to the Ben Dovid [Moshiach].
16 And they said to Moshiach, Do you hear what these are saying? And Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach says to them, Ken. Have you never read, MIPI OLLELIM VYONKIM YISSADETAH OZ (From the lips of children and infants You ordained strength, praise, TEHILLIM 8:3[2])?
17 And having left them, he went out of the city to Beit-Anyah (Bethany) and spent the night there.
18 Now going up early into the city, he was hungry.
19 And observing the etz teenah (fig tree) on the way, he went up to it and found nothing on it, except leaves, and he says to it, No longer from you will there ever be pri (fruit)! And the etz teenah withered then and there.
20 And observing this, the talmidim were astounded, saying, How did the etz teenah instantly wither?
21 And he said in reply, Omein, I say to you, if you have emunah and do not doubt, not only will you do what was done to the etz teenah, but also if you say to this mountain, Be lifted up and be thrown into the sea, it will happen.
22 And, when you daven, all things whatever for which you may make techinnah (petition, supplication) with emunah, you will receive.
23 And after Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach had gone into the Beis Hamikdash, while he was bringing forth his torah, the Rashei Hakohanim and the Zekenim of the people approached him, saying, By what samchut (authority) do you do these things? And who granted you this samchut?
24 And Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach said in reply to them, I also will ask you a question, which, if you will tell me, I also will tell you by what samchut I do these things...
25 The tevilah in the mikveh mayim of was from where, from Shomayim or from Bnei Adam? And they were discussing it among themselves, saying, If we say, From Shomayim, he will say to us, Why then do you not believe him?
26 But if we say, From Bnei Adam, we fear the multitude, for everyone considers Yochanan a Navi.
27 And in reply to him, they said, We do not have daas. And Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach said to them, Neither will I tell you by what samchut I do these things.
28 What do you think? A man had two banim (sons). And having approached the rishon (first), the man said, Beni (my son), go today and work in the kerem (vineyard).
29 But the first son said in reply, I will not. But later, having changed his mind, he went.
30 And having approached the other son, the man spoke similarly. But the second son, in reply, said, I will go, Adoni. Yet he did not go.
31 Which of the two did the ratzon haAv (the will of the Father)? They say, The rishon (the first). Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach says to them, Omein, I say to you, that the mochesim (tax-collectors) and the zonot (prostitutes) are going in ahead of you into the Malchut Hashem.
32 For Yochanan of the tevilah of teshuva came to you in the Derech Tzidkat Hashem (Way of Righteousness), and you did not believe him. But the mochesim and the zonot believed him. But you, even after you saw, did not change your mind [i.e., make teshuva] and believe him.
33 Listen to another mashal. There was a man, a Baal Bayit, who planted a kerem (vineyard). And he put a fence around it, and he dug a yekev (winepress) in it, and built a migdal (tower) and leased it to koremim (vinekeepers) and departed.
34 And when the time of the Katsir (Harvest) came, the Baal Bayit sent his servants to the koremim to receive the pri (fruit).
35 And the koremim, having seized his servants, one they beat, another they killed, and another they stoned.
36 And the Baal Bayit sent other servants, more than the rishonim (first ones), and the koremim did the same thing to them.
37 Lemaskana (finally, at last), the Baal Bayit sent to the koremim his Ben, saying, They will respect my Ben.
38 And when the koremim saw the Ben, they said among themselves, This is the Bechor (Firstborn), the Yoresh (Heir). Come, let us kill him and let us take possession of his bechorah (inheritance).
39 And having seized the Ben, they threw the Ben out of the kerem and they killed him.
40 Therefore, when the Baal HaKerem (Owner of the Vineyard) comes, what will he do to those koremim (vine keepers)?
41 They say to Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach, Those reshaim (evil-doers) the Baal HaKerem will bring to a terrible mavet, and the Kerem the Baal HaKerem will lease to other koremim, who will render unto the Baal HaKerem the PRI BITO (fruit in its season, TEHILLIM 1:3).
42 Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach says to them, Have you never heard in the Kitvei Hakodesh (Holy Scriptures), EVEN MAASU HABONIM HAYTAH LEROSH PINAH; MEIES HASHEM HAYTAH ZOT HI NIFLAT BEINEINU (The Stone which the Builders rejected, this one has become Head of the Corner; this came about from the L-rd, and it is marvelous in our eyes, TEHILLIM 118:22-23)?
43 For this reason, I say to you, the Malchut Hashem will be taken from you and it will be given to a people that produces its pri.
44 And the one having fallen on this EVEN (Stone, [Moshiach] DANIEL 2:35; YESHAYAH 8:14-15) will be crushed; and it will crush anyone on whom it falls.
45 And having heard Moshiach’s mashal, the Rashei Hakohanim and the Perushim understood that he spoke about them.
46 And seeking to arrest him, they were afraid of the multitudes, vi-bahlt (since) the multitudes considered him a Navi.

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Mattityahu 21 Commentary

Chapter 21

Christ enters Jerusalem. (1-11) He drives out those who profaned the temple. (12-17) The barren fig-tree cursed. (18-22) Jesus' discourse in the temple. (23-27) The parable of the two sons. (28-32) The parable of the wicked husbandmen. (33-46)

Verses 1-11 This coming of Christ was described by the prophet Zechariah, ( Zechariah 9:9 ) . When Christ would appear in his glory, it is in his meekness, not in his majesty, in mercy to work salvation. As meekness and outward poverty were fully seen in Zion's King, and marked his triumphal entrance to Jerusalem, how wrong covetousness, ambition, and the pride of life must be in Zion's citizens! They brought the ass, but Jesus did not use it without the owner's consent. The trappings were such as came to hand. We must not think the clothes on our backs too dear to part with for the service of Christ. The chief priests and the elders afterwards joined with the multitude that abused him upon the cross; but none of them joined the multitude that did him honour. Those that take Christ for their King, must lay their all under his feet. Hosanna signifies, Save now, we beseech thee! Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord! But of how little value is the applause of the people! The changing multitude join the cry of the day, whether it be Hosanna, or Crucify him. Multitudes often seem to approve the gospel, but few become consistent disciples. When Jesus was come into Jerusalem all the city was moved; some perhaps were moved with joy, who waited for the Consolation of Israel; others, of the Pharisees, were moved with envy. So various are the motions in the minds of men upon the approach of Christ's kingdom.

Verses 12-17 Christ found some of the courts of the temple turned into a market for cattle and things used in the sacrifices, and partly occupied by the money-changers. Our Lord drove them from the place, as he had done at his entering upon his ministry, ( John 2:13-17 ) . His works testified of him more than the hosannas; and his healing in the temple was the fulfilling the promise, that the glory of the latter house should be greater than the glory of the former. If Christ came now into many parts of his visible church, how many secret evils he would discover and cleanse! And how many things daily practised under the cloak of religion, would he show to be more suitable to a den of thieves than to a house of prayer!

Verses 18-22 This cursing of the barren fig-tree represents the state of hypocrites in general, and so teaches us that Christ looks for the power of religion in those who profess it, and the savour of it from those that have the show of it. His just expectations from flourishing professors are often disappointed; he comes to many, seeking fruit, and finds leaves only. A false profession commonly withers in this world, and it is the effect of Christ's curse. The fig-tree that had no fruit, soon lost its leaves. This represents the state of the nation and people of the Jews in particular. Our Lord Jesus found among them nothing but leaves. And after they rejected Christ, blindness and hardness grew upon them, till they were undone, and their place and nation rooted up. The Lord was righteous in it. Let us greatly fear the doom denounced on the barren fig-tree.

Verses 23-27 As our Lord now openly appeared as the Messiah, the chief priests and scribes were much offended, especially because he exposed and removed the abuses they encouraged. Our Lord asked what they thought of John's ministry and baptism. Many are more afraid of the shame of lying than of the sin, and therefore scruple not to speak what they know to be false, as to their own thoughts, affections, and intentions, or their remembering and forgetting. Our Lord refused to answer their inquiry. It is best to shun needless disputes with wicked opposers.

Verses 28-32 Parables which give reproof, speak plainly to the offenders, and judge them out of their own mouths. The parable of the two sons sent to work in the vineyard, is to show that those who knew not John's baptism to be of God, were shamed by those who knew it, and owned it. The whole human race are like children whom the Lord has brought up, but they have rebelled against him, only some are more plausible in their disobedience than others. And it often happens, that the daring rebel is brought to repentance and becomes the Lord's servant, while the formalist grows hardened in pride and enmity.

Verses 33-46 This parable plainly sets forth the sin and ruin of the Jewish nation; and what is spoken to convict them, is spoken to caution all that enjoy the privileges of the outward church. As men treat God's people, they would treat Christ himself, if he were with them. How can we, if faithful to his cause, expect a favourable reception from a wicked world, or from ungodly professors of Christianity! And let us ask ourselves, whether we who have the vineyard and all its advantages, render fruits in due season, as a people, as a family, or as separate persons. Our Saviour, in his question, declares that the Lord of the vineyard will come, and when he comes he will surely destroy the wicked. The chief priests and the elders were the builders, and they would not admit his doctrine or laws; they threw him aside as a despised stone. But he who was rejected by the Jews, was embraced by the Gentiles. Christ knows who will bring forth gospel fruits in the use of gospel means. The unbelief of sinners will be their ruin. But God has many ways of restraining the remainders of wrath, as he has of making that which breaks out redound to his praise. May Christ become more and more precious to our souls, as the firm Foundation and Cornerstone of his church. May we be willing to follow him, though despised and hated for his sake.

Mattityahu 21 Commentaries

The Orthodox Jewish Bible fourth edition, OJB. Copyright 2002,2003,2008,2010, 2011 by Artists for Israel International. All rights reserved.