Matthew 22 Questions and Answers
1. Read Matthew 22:1-10. What is the kingdom of heaven like?
- A king who prepared a wedding banquet for his son. In accordance with Jewish customs wedding invitations were sent out without the time being stated. When everything was ready the servants were sent out with a final notice to tell the guests to come.
- The Kingdom is that place where God rules, where God's subjects live. It is a spiritual kingdom. It is a community of people who are redeemed, who have come to salvation, who are under the rule, guiding and the leading of God.
- What is important is the Lord wants to identify the greatest celebration that those people could ever comprehend in their culture. And He is saying the Kingdom of heaven is like the greatest celebration imaginable thrown by the wealthiest person imaginable for the most honored person imaginable.
2. How many of those invited to this special wedding banquet, accepted the invitation and attended?
- None accepted the invitation. They all refused to come.
3. How did the king respond to this refusal?
- He sent out more servants to tell those invited that the dinner was ready - the oxen and fatted cattle had been butchered and everything was ready, so come to the wedding banquet.
- In that culture, the people only had 2 meals - around 9 am and after sunset. The king was probably inviting them to the "brunch".
4. What was the response of the invited guests this time?
- They paid no attention to the invitation but instead one went to his field, another to his business, the rest seized the servants, mistreated them and killed them. (some were indifferent, some were hostile)
5. What was the response of the king to this insult?
- He was enraged. He sent his army (troops) and destroyed those murderers and burned their city.
- Jesus was saying because Israel had rejected the Messiah, God rejects them. And those who hostilely killed the Son will be severely judged by God and their city will be burned. Jerusalem was.
6. What does it mean they didn't deserve to come? Vs 8
- Not because they weren't good enough or moral enough, but they wouldn't accept the invitation.
7. So did anyone get to enjoy the wedding banquet that had already been prepared?
- The king sent out servants to the street corners to invite the people there to come to the banquet. Like Matthew 28:19. Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every person.
- The servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, both good and bad. In the end the wedding hall was filled with guests.
8. Read Matthew 22:11-14. One person didn't get to stay for the wedding meal. How come? What happened to him?
- When the king came to see the guests he noticed that there was a man who was not wearing wedding clothes.
- The king asked how he got in without wearing wedding clothes. The man apparently didn't know how to answer for he was speechless
- The king told his attendants to tie him up hand and foot and throw him outside into the darkness where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
9. How many are called? How many are chosen?
- Many are called, few are chosen
10. What is the meaning behind this parable?
a. Who is the king? Who are the invited guests?
- Ages ago God had invited the Jews to be His chosen people; yet when God's Son came into the world, and they were invited to follow Him they contemptuously refused.
b. What was invitation of a wedding feast a picture of?
- God is inviting us to a feast that is as joyous as a wedding feast. His invitation is to joy.
- If we do not accept the invitation we miss out on joy - that is the focus but those who didn't come were also punished.
- In the final end, God's invitation is an invitation of grace. We have no claim on God, we don't deserve the invitation - it is purely the loving, and open-hearted generosity of God.
c. Who are the servants that go out to call the already invited ones?
- Preachers like John the Baptist, Jesus Himself, and the Apostles
- Would that include us as believers? We are told to be serve, and to go and preach the gospel to every creature.
d. What does the indifference and hostility of the invited people represent?
- The things that caused people to not accept God's invitation were not bad in themselves. One went to his field, another to his business. They did not go off on an immoral or wild carousal adventure. It is so easy to be busy with things here on earth that we forget the things of eternity. We constantly hear the claims of the world so we cannot hear the soft voice of Jesus. So often it is the second bests that shut out the bests, and the things that are good shut out the things that are supreme. A materialist, secular person can be so busy making a living that they fail to make a life.
- The hostile people would be those who persecute the Christians - the false religions.
Are you indifferent or hostile to God's invitation to a wedding feast put on in honor of His Son Jesus?
e. What were the consequences of the Jews refusal to accept God's invitation?
- Armies come in and burn up the city. That happened between the time of Jesus and when Matthew wrote the Gospel between 80-90 AD. Jerusalem was destroyed by the armies of Rome.
- As a result, the invitation of God went into the highways and byways - that stands for the sinners and Gentiles who never expected an invitation into the Kingdom. God in His grace invites all people into His Kingdom
f. Why was the king upset with the one man who was dressed differently? What kind of person does that represent?
- It appears that since everyone else had the appropriate attire, it must have been provided and since he had no excuse he must have been very proud, insulting, and thoughtless. He was just going to do his own thing.
- Who are these people? They are like the people in Matthew 7 who say, "Lord, Lord, have we not cast out demons, have we not done many wonderful works in your name? Lord, Lord, we preached. He says, Out, I never knew you, who are you?" These are Kingdom crashers, the tares among the wheat. They're not properly garmented.
- This verse is talking about Gentiles who claim to be Christians but are not living a holy life.
Do you feel you should be allowed to come to God on your own terms?
g. What's the garment the King was looking for? How do you get that garment? (Matthew 5:20, Isaiah 61:10, 2 Corinthians 5:21, Colossians 3:12)
- A garment of righteousness. You must be clothed with His righteousness by faith in His death and resurrection.
- Matthew 5:20 says, "For I say unto you that except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you shall in no case enter into the Kingdom of heaven." Righteousness is necessary for entrance into the Kingdom of heaven. Not the self-righteousness of the Pharisees but a God-given righteousness. The Jews who were listening would understand this because they would remember Isaiah 61:10 and it says, "I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God, for He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, He hath covered me with the robe of righteousness." They knew that righteousness was the robe.
- The king looked at this man, and he saw no righteousness - no right living, no right thinking, no right speaking. He saw no holiness, no godliness. He said you don't belong in here, you can't crash the Kingdom on your own terms. (Isaiah 64:6 - All our righteousness is like filthy rags) "What marks a true believer is evident righteousness, not hanging around other believers.
- How do you get that righteousness?" 2 Corinthians 5:21 it says, "He (Jesus) who knew no sin was made sin for us that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him." When we come to love Christ and receive Christ, we receive the righteousness of God. That's our robe. Good and bad people come but once you come in, you have a robe.
- When we come to Jesus we need to bring a life which seeks to fit the love that has been given us. Grace is a gift but it also has serious responsibilities. We cannot go on living our life like we did before we met Christ. We need to clothe ourselves in purity, holiness and goodness. Col 3:12 - as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
- The spirit with which we meet with the Lord is important - we should clothe ourselves with a spirit of expectation, humbleness, faith and reverence.
Are you wearing the garment God has prepared for you?
h. Who is the only person God will reject?
- The door is open to all people but the one who rejects the celebration in honour of His Son or thinks they can come on their own terms will be rejected.
- You could be a moral person, but without a robe you'll be thrown out. You could be a formerly immoral person, but when clothed in the holiness of Christ, you'd be welcome to stay.
i. What is the meaning of many are called but few are chosen?
- From the parable and the context, the call, the gospel invitation is sent out to everywhere. Some are indifferent, some are hostile, and some try to crash the Kingdom on their own terms.
- With the word "chosen" we're introduced to the sovereignty of God. There is the will of man in receiving the invitation or in rejecting the invitation. But the perfect balance to that is that God is sovereign. And those who come choose to come, the Bible says, because they're chosen by Him. That's a mystery we'll never fathom.
- Many are "called" or invited with the message of repentance (22:14; 21:32), but only those who respond worthily will share the inheritance of the chosen covenant people; compare 7:13-23 (wide and narrow gate).
Have you accepted God's invitation to the wedding feast in honour of His Son Jesus?
11. Read Matthew 22:15-22. Who came together to trap Jesus? What was unusual about this?
- The Pharisees and Herodians can to trap Jesus but they were in bitter opposition with each other. What they had in common was their hatred for Jesus and desire to eliminate Him.
- The aim was to make Jesus discredit himself with his own words in the presence of the people.
12. What was the trap?
- They buttered Jesus up saying He was a man of integrity and that He taught the way of God in accordance with the truth, that He wasn't swayed by men or paid attention to who they are. Therefore, they wanted to know what His opinion was about whether it was right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?
- There were 3 regular taxes - ground tax where you pay a certain percentage of your crop to the government. Income tax was where you paid 1% of your income. The poll tax was a denarius and paid by men 14-65 years, and women 12 - 65 years and worth more than a day's wages.
- If Jesus said it was unlawful to pay the tax they would report Him to the Roman government official and He would be arrested. If He said it was lawful, Jesus would have been discredited in the people's eyes because many resented the taxes. To a Jew God was the only King and their nation was a theocracy. So to pay tax to an earthly king was to admit the validity of his kingship and therefore insult God.
13. How did Jesus diffuse their trap?
- He knew the Pharisees & Herodians evil intent so called them hypocrites & publicly exposed their desire to trap Him.
- Jesus asked them to bring the coin used to pay for the tax. They brought a denarius. He asked whose portrait and inscription was on the coin. They correctly said, Caesar's.
- Then Jesus told them to give to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's.
- Jesus didn't lay down rules and regulations; that is why His teaching is timeless and never goes out of date. He always lays down principles. The principle here is that every Christian person has a double citizenship - the country the person lives in, and a citizen of heaven. The Christian has a duty to Caesar in return for the privileges which the rule of Caesar brings the person. 1 Peter 2:17 says to Fear God and honour the emperor.
14. What was the response of the people to Jesus' answer?
- The people were amazed and
- The Pharisees and Herodians left Jesus and went away.
15. Read Matthew 22:23-33. Who was the next group of people that tried to attack Jesus?
- The Sadducees - they were the wealthy, governing group. Chief priests were part of the Sadducees.
- The Sadducees did not believe in life after death so it was interesting that they would bring up a situation that involved 7 men and 1 woman that had been married and whose wife would she be at the resurrection.
16. What did Jesus clarify right from the beginning?
- The whole question starts with a basic error - the error of thinking of heaven in terms of earth, and eternity in terms of time. Heaven is not simply a continuation or an extension of this world. There will be new and greater relationships which will far transcend the physical relationships of time.
- Jesus shattered the Sadducees belief that there was no resurrection from the dead. He said that God was the God of Abraham and of Isaac and of Jacob. God cannot be the God of dead men but the living God must be the God of living men. From Scripture Jesus refuted the Sadducees and had shown them that there is life after death which must not be thought of in earthly terms.
17. How did the crowd respond to Jesus' answer?
- The crowds were amazed that someone could respond to questions the way He did.
18. Read Matthew 22:34-40. Who asked the next question? What was the question? What was the purpose of the question?
- The Pharisees got together and an expert of the law came to Jesus with a question to test Him
- The question was, "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?"
- In what way was it a test? There were some 600 commands so they were wondering which one Jesus would choose.
19. What was Jesus' answer? What does Jesus' answer mean?
- Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. This is from Deuteronomy 6:5. This means that to God we must give our total love, a love that dominates our emotions and directs our thoughts. This is a love which is a total commitment of life to God.
- The second is like it: Love your neighbour as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments. This comes from Leviticus 19:18. It is only when we love God that man becomes lovable. But take away the love of God and we become angry at each other and pessimistic. We are to love people who God made in His image.
- Believing God is not enough, you need to love God with your whole being.
20. Read Matthew 22:41-46. What question did Jesus ask the Pharisees?
- What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?
- This is an indirect question. He doesn't ask who they think He is, but He wanted to know whose son they thought the Messiah was?
21. What was the Pharisees' response?
- Son of David - they thought they understood who the Messiah to be - purely a political person but Jesus wanted to take them to a higher understanding.
22. Did Jesus agree with the answer?
- As right as the Pharisees' answer was, it was still only partially true. In answering Jesus' question, the Pharisees may have been in effect saying, "Why are you letting people call you the Son of David? That Messianic title is too great to refer to you." Jesus responds by saying, "No, that Messianic title is actually too small a title for Me. David had many descendants but I am the greatest of those." However the question remained in the minds of the Pharisees how Jesus could be greater than all of David's descendants, including the great King Solomon and Hezekiah. They thought the Messiah would be someone far more impressive than Jesus of Nazareth.
- Jesus responds to the Pharisees by first saying that David called the Messiah "Lord."
- King David was under divine inspiration when he called the Messiah adonai (Lord), thus calling Him God.
- The first Lord is God, the second Lord is Messiah.
- The main reason Jesus used Psalm 110 was to affirm the deity of the Messiah. The intent of Matthew 22:41-46 was to affirm to the Pharisees and to the world that the Messiah--Jesus Himself--is God incarnate and affirmed as such by King David.
- What Jesus was saying was that the Messiah was not David's son but David's Lord.
- The most common title of the Messiah was Son of David. But the Messiah was normally thought of as a nationalistic, political and military leader.
- But Jesus needs to clarify that a better description of Him would be Son of God rather than Son of David. In Him there came, not the earthly conqueror who would repeat the military triumphs of David, but the Son of God who would demonstrate the love of God on His cross.
- Sit on my right hand, till I make your enemies your footstool?" means that God the Father has given the Messiah a position that brings Him in a co-equal place of power and authority with Himself. God Himself declares the Messiah's deity.
- The phrase "sit on my right hand" is a symbol of authority because the right hand represents strength and power. Likewise, Christ was put at the right hand of God to symbolize a place of equality, authority, and power.
- "Till I put your enemies under your feet." God was in effect saying, "Messiah! I will put everything under You. All Your enemies will ultimately become Your footstool." That pictures the ancient Oriental practice of a king putting his heel on the neck of his defeated enemy.
- Verses 43-45 was a riddle the Pharisees couldn't answer. They were the religious leaders of Israel, yet they were stumped. The brain trust of Judaism could not answer Him because they would not acknowledge Jesus as God and man. The Pharisees no doubt asked themselves, "How can the Messiah be the son of David and David's Lord at the same time? He would have to be God and man." They knew Jesus was the son of David because they surely would have checked his genealogy. But they also had overwhelming evidence that He was the Son of God. The Pharisees had to fight the obvious to conclude anything other than that.
23. How did the Pharisees respond when Jesus asked why David would then have called the Messiah Lord if He was his son?
- No one would answer him. From that day on no one dared to ask him any more questions.
24. If you could ask Jesus any question, what would you ask Him?