On Tuesday, a day of Controversy, the Twelve find the cursed fig tree withered which Jesus uses an illustration for Faith, stating that even a little bit of faith can move mountains. Then Jesus' authority is questioned in the Temple courts by three groups . Deflecting questions on His authority, paying taxes and resurrection, Jesus asks questions regarding John the Baptist, and three parables on Israel's displacement when none will answer, and His relationship to David. Once silence reveals the guilty, Jesus pronounces woe oracles. Later, Christ gave the Olivet Discourse to His disciples to speak prophetically about the temple which they marveled, signs of the end times, and His own second coming as they walked to the Mt. of Olives. Jesus concluded with five parables on being watchful and faithful.
Jesus is first approached by the Temple Priests. They ask Jesus by what authority and from where Jesus does "these things" referring to His miracles and teachings. Jesus promises to answer their question if they answer where John's baptism came from: Heaven or from Men. The Priests respond "we don't know" for saying Heaven answers their question and saying Men would put them at odds with the people. So Jesus says He won't answer them, but then goes on tell them 3 parables on Israel's displacement as His answer. The first is the Two sons: the first son refused then obeyed while the second son accepted then disobeyed. The conclusion? Tax collectors and prostitutes who first disobeyed but now obey are entering Heaven before the Priests. The second is the Wicked Tenants: a Landlord asks for fruit of vineyard, but the servants & the son are attacked and killed. Thus, the Tenants cast out and new tenants are acquired. THe third is the Wedding Banquet: the Original invitees refuse to come, so people on the street are invited instead, but man without wedding clothes thrown out.
The second group to approach Jesus is a Herodian-Pharisees alliance (Herodians are pro-Roman tax collectors, and Pharisees are anti-Roman pay no taxes, so this is an unusual alliance) . They ask Jesus if it is lawful to pay taxes to trap Jesus. Jesus asks to see coin and inquires whose inscription is on it. They say Ceasar's. Thus, Jesus tells them to render unto Ceasar what is Ceasar's and unto God what is God's for God's image is upon them. They're stunned.
Last, the Sadducees approach Jesus an ask an absurd hypothetical question about Leverite marriage where a wife is married to seven brothers. Jesus reveals their lack of knowledge, for their will be no marriage in heaven (we will be like the angels). Jesus also points out that there must be resurrection for the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is a God of the living not the dead.
A Pharisee overheard these questions and asked the Legal Question "what is the greatest commandment?" Jesus answers by giving two summative Commands: Love the Lord with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself.
Jesus then goes on the offensive asking the Priests questions. Jesus asks them who they think the Messiah. David's son is the answer. Jesus then asks how David could refer to His son as His Lord in the Psalms. This silences them and nobody dared ask Him anymore questions. Jesus then pronounces 7 woe oracles on them for encrusting God's law with man-made restrictions and legalism while losing sight of the Heart of the instruction.
Before leaving the temple Jesus is impressed by a poor widow who gave out of her poverty with just 2 mina.
Jesus then delivers the Olivet Discourse as they traveled to the Mount of Olives, an end time discussion in response to the Disciples wonderment at the Temple stones and construction. Jesus sermon of the end is in a collapsed prophetic view that encompasses the fall of Jerusalem and Jesus' 2nd coming. Jesus warns that no stone of temple will be left on one another, false Christ's will come, persecution will come, there will be earthquakes and wars & rumors of wars, and famine. Yet, no one knows the time or the hour of Christ's second coming. He said that He would come with power, that there would be cosmic disturbances, and angels collect the elect. But the end would not come until the Gospel had been preached to all nations. Thus Jesus told five parables about keeping the faith until the end: 1) Servants and absent Landlord, 2) Homeowner & thief, 3) Good & Wicked Servant, 4) Ten Virgins, 5) Talents. When Jesus does come, it will initiate the judgement of all, separating sheep & goats.
Brett Yardley: Warrior for Christ. Devoted Husband. Proud Father. Martial Artist. Hopeful Philosopher & Theologian. Aspiring Teacher & Writer.