Luke 20
Benson Commentary
And it came to pass, that on one of those days, as he taught the people in the temple, and preached the gospel, the chief priests and the scribes came upon him with the elders,
Luke 20:1-8. And on one of those days the chief priests, scribes, and elders — That is, some of the first men of the nation; came — By appointment of the senate, to Jesus; and spake, saying, Tell us by what authority, &c. — See on Matthew 21:23-27, and Mark 11:27-33.

And spake unto him, saying, Tell us, by what authority doest thou these things? or who is he that gave thee this authority?
And he answered and said unto them, I will also ask you one thing; and answer me:
The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men?
And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say, Why then believed ye him not?
But and if we say, Of men; all the people will stone us: for they be persuaded that John was a prophet.
And they answered, that they could not tell whence it was.
And Jesus said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.
Then began he to speak to the people this parable; A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time.
Luke 20:9-19. A certain man planted a vineyard, &c. — See this paragraph explained on Matthew 21:33-46, and Mark 12:1-12. And went into a far country for a long time — It was a long time from the entrance of the Israelites into Canaan to the birth of Christ. He shall destroy those husbandmen — Probably he pointed to the scribes, chief priests, and elders; who allowed, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, Matthew 21:41, but could not bear that this should be applied to themselves. They might also mean, God forbid that we should be guilty of such a crime as your parable seems to charge us with, namely, rejecting and killing the heir. Our Saviour means, But yet ye will do it, as is prophesied of you. He looked on them — To sharpen their attention.

And at the season he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard: but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty.
And again he sent another servant: and they beat him also, and entreated him shamefully, and sent him away empty.
And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out.
Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him.
But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours.
So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him. What therefore shall the lord of the vineyard do unto them?
He shall come and destroy these husbandmen, and shall give the vineyard to others. And when they heard it, they said, God forbid.
And he beheld them, and said, What is this then that is written, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner?
Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.
And the chief priests and the scribes the same hour sought to lay hands on him; and they feared the people: for they perceived that he had spoken this parable against them.
And they watched him, and sent forth spies, which should feign themselves just men, that they might take hold of his words, that so they might deliver him unto the power and authority of the governor.
Luke 20:20-26. And they watched him — For an elucidation of this paragraph, see on Matthew 22:16-22, and Mark 12:13-17; and sent spies, which should feign themselves just men — Men scrupulously conscientious in every point: that they might take hold of his words — If he answered as they hoped he would. Master, we know then sayest, &c. — Speakest in private, and teachest in public; the way of God truly — The true path of duty. They could not take hold of his words before the people — As they did afterward before the sanhedrim, in the absence of the people, chap. Luke 22:67, &c.

And they asked him, saying, Master, we know that thou sayest and teachest rightly, neither acceptest thou the person of any, but teachest the way of God truly:
Is it lawful for us to give tribute unto Caesar, or no?
But he perceived their craftiness, and said unto them, Why tempt ye me?
Shew me a penny. Whose image and superscription hath it? They answered and said, Caesar's.
And he said unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar's, and unto God the things which be God's.
And they could not take hold of his words before the people: and they marvelled at his answer, and held their peace.
Then came to him certain of the Sadducees, which deny that there is any resurrection; and they asked him,
Luke 20:27-40. Then came to him certain of the Sadducees — These verses are explained at large, on Matthew 22:23-33, and Mark 12:18-26. The children of this world — The inhabitants of earth; marry and are given in marriage — As being all subject to the law of mortality, so that the species is in need of being continually repaired. But they which obtain that world — The world which holy souls enter into at death; namely, paradise; and the resurrection from the dead — It must be observed, our Lord, agreeably to the Jewish style of that period, calls that only the resurrection which is a resurrection to glory. They are the children of God — In a more eminent sense when they rise again, having then received that public manifestation of their adoption, mentioned Romans 8:23; the redemption of their body. Now that the dead are raised, even Moses — As well as the other prophets; showed, when he calleth, &c. — That is, when he recites the words which God spoke of himself, I am the God of Abraham, &c. — It cannot properly be said, that God is the God of any who are totally perished. He is not a God of the dead, &c. — Or, as the clause may be properly rendered, There is not a God of the dead, but of the living — That is, the term God implies such a relation as cannot possibly subsist between him and the dead; who, in the Sadducees’ sense, are extinguished spirits, who could neither worship him nor receive good from him. For all live unto him — All who have him for their God, live to, and enjoy him. This sentence is not an argument for what went before; but the very proposition which was to be proved. And the consequence is apparently just. For, as all the faithful are the children of Abraham, and the divine promise, of being a God to him and his seed, is entailed upon them, it implies their continued existence and happiness in a future state, as much as Abraham’s. And as the body is an essential part of man, it implies both his resurrection and theirs; and so overthrows the entire scheme of the Sadducean doctrine. They durst not ask him any question — The Sadducees durst not. One of the scribes did presently after.

Saying, Master, Moses wrote unto us, If any man's brother die, having a wife, and he die without children, that his brother should take his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.
There were therefore seven brethren: and the first took a wife, and died without children.
And the second took her to wife, and he died childless.
And the third took her; and in like manner the seven also: and they left no children, and died.
Last of all the woman died also.
Therefore in the resurrection whose wife of them is she? for seven had her to wife.
And Jesus answering said unto them, The children of this world marry, and are given in marriage:
But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage:
Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection.
Now that the dead are raised, even Moses shewed at the bush, when he calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.
For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for all live unto him.
Then certain of the scribes answering said, Master, thou hast well said.
And after that they durst not ask him any question at all.
And he said unto them, How say they that Christ is David's son?
Luke 20:41-47. How say they that Christ is David’s son, &c. — For an elucidation of these verses, see on Matthew 22:41-46; Matthew 23:5-7; Matthew 23:14; and Mark 12:35-40. David therefore calleth him Lord: how is he then his son — “This implies both the existence of David in a future state, and the authority of the Messiah over that invisible world into which that prince was removed by death. Else, how great a monarch soever the Messiah might have been, he could not have been properly called David’s Lord; any more than Julius Cesar could have been called the lord of Romulus, because he reigned in Rome seven hundred years after his death, and vastly extended the bounds of that empire which Romulus founded. Munster’s note on this text shows, in a very forcible manner, the wretched expedients of some modern Jews to evade the force of that interpretation of the one hundred and tenth Psalm, which refers it to the Messiah.” — Doddridge.

And David himself saith in the book of Psalms, The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand,
Till I make thine enemies thy footstool.
David therefore calleth him Lord, how is he then his son?
Then in the audience of all the people he said unto his disciples,
Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts;
Which devour widows' houses, and for a shew make long prayers: the same shall receive greater damnation.
Benson Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

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