Matthew 22:45
If David then call him Lord, how is he his son?
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22:41-46 When Christ baffled his enemies, he asked what thoughts they had of the promised Messiah? How he could be the Son of David and yet his Lord? He quotes Ps 110:1. If the Christ was to be a mere man, who would not exist till many ages after David's death, how could his forefather call him Lord? The Pharisees could not answer it. Nor can any solve the difficulty except he allows the Messiah to be the Son of God, and David's Lord equally with the Father. He took upon him human nature, and so became God manifested in the flesh; in this sense he is the Son of man and the Son of David. It behoves us above all things seriously to inquire, What think we of Christ? Is he altogether glorious in our eyes, and precious to our hearts? May Christ be our joy, our confidence, our all. May we daily be made more like to him, and more devoted to his service.If David ... - If he was then David's lord if he was his superior - if he had an existence at that time how could he be descended from him? They could not answer him.

Nor is there any way of answering the question but by the admission that the Messiah was divine as well as human; that he had an existence at the time of David, and was his lord and master, his God I and king, and that as man he was descended from him.

Remarks On Matthew 22

1. Multitudes of people, who are invited to be saved, reject the gospel and perish in their sins, Matthew 22:3.

2. If they perish, they only will be to blame. The offer was freely made, the salvation was provided, and the only reason why they were not saved was that they would not come, Matthew 22:3.

3. Attention to the affairs of this life, the love of the world, will shut many out of the kingdom of heaven, Matthew 22:5. Some attention to those things is necessary; but such a devotion to these things as to lead to the loss of the soul never can be right.

4. It is treating God ungratefully to reject his gospel, Matthew 22:3-5. He has sent his Son to die for us; he has entreated us to be saved; he has followed us with mercies; and to reject all these, and refuse to be saved, is to treat him with contempt, as well as to overwhelm ourselves in condemnation. "Man has no right to be damned." He is under the most solemn obligations to be "saved;" and after what God has done for us, deep and dreadful woe will await us if we are so foolish and wicked as to be lost.

5. Many of the poor and needy will be saved, while the haughty and rich will perish forever, Matthew 22:9-10.

6. Let those who make a profession of religion look often to the great day when Christ will search them, Matthew 22:11. There is a day coming that will try us. His eye will be upon us. He will read our hearts, and see whether we are clothed in his righteousness, or only the filthy rags of our own.

7. A profession of religion will not save us, Matthew 22:11-13. It is foolish to deceive ourselves. Nothing but genuine piety, true faith in Jesus, and a holy life, will save us. God asks not profession merely, but the heart. He asks not mockery, but sincerity; not pretension, but reality.

8. The hypocrite must perish, Matthew 22:13. It is right that he should perish. He knew his Master's will and would not do it. He must perish with an awful condemnation. No man sins amid so much light, none with so high a hand. No sin is so awful as to attempt to deceive God, and to palm pretensions on him for reality.

9. Pretended friends are sometimes more dangerous than avowed enemies, Matthew 22:16. Pretended friendship is often for the purpose of decoying us into evil. It throws us off our guard, and we are more easily taken.

10. The truth is often admitted by wicked people from mere hypocrisy, Matthew 22:16. It is only for the purpose of deceiving others and leading them into sin.

11. Wicked people can decide correctly on the character of a public preacher, Matthew 22:16. They often admit his claim in words, but for an evil purpose.


Mt 22:41-46. Christ Baffles the Pharisees by a Question about David and Messiah. ( = Mr 12:35-37; Lu 20:41-44).

For the exposition, see on [1344]Mr 12:35-37.

See Poole on "Matthew 22:46".

If David then call him Lord,.... That is, the Messiah, which is taken for granted, nor could the Pharisees deny it,

how is he his son? The question is to be answered upon true and just notions of the Messiah, but unanswerable upon the principles of the Pharisees; who expected the Messiah only as a mere man, that should be of the seed of David, and so his son; and should sit upon his throne, and be a prosperous and victorious prince, and deliver them out of the hands of their temporal enemies: they were able to make answer to the question, separately considered, as that he should be of the lineage and house of David; should lineally descend from him, be of his family, one of his offspring and posterity, and so be properly and naturally his son; but how he could be so, consistent with his being David's Lord, puzzled them. Had they understood and owned the proper divinity of the Messiah, they might have answered, that as he was God, he was David's Lord, his maker, and his king; and, as man, was David's son, and so both his root and offspring; and this our Lord meant to bring them to a confession of, or put them to confusion and silence, which was the consequence.

If David then call him Lord, how is he his son?
Matthew 22:45 f. Εἰ οὖν Δαυεὶδ, κ.τ.λ.] The emphasis rests on the correlative terms κύριον and υἱός: If, then, as appears from this language of the psalm, David, whose son He is, according to your express confession, still calls Him Lord, how is this to be reconciled with the fact that He is at the same time the psalmist’s son? Surely that styling of Him as Lord must seem incompatible with the fact of such sonship! The difficulty might have been solved in this way: according to His human descent He is David’s son; but, according to His divine origin as the Son of God, from whom He is sprung, and by whom He is sent (Matthew 9:27, Matthew 17:26; John 1:14; John 1:18; John 6:46; John 7:28 f.; Romans 1:3 f.),—in virtue of which relation He is superior to David and all that is merely human, and, by His elevation to the heavenly δόξα (Acts 2:34), destined to share in the divine administration of things in a manner in keeping with this superiority,

He is by David, speaking under the influence of the Holy Spirit, called his Lord. The Pharisees understood nothing of this twofold relation, and consequently could not discern the true majesty and destiny of the Messiah, so as to see in Him both David’s Son and Lord. Hence not one of them was found capable of answering the question as to the πῶςἐστι. Observe that the question does not imply a negative, as though Jesus had asked, μὴ υἱὸς αὐτοῦ ἐστι;

οὐκέτι] “Nova dehinc quasi scena se pandit,” Bengel.

Matthew 22:45. Εἰ οὖν Δανὶδ, if David therefore) It was the duty of the Jews to study that point with the utmost earnestness, especially at that time. It is considerably more evident of Christ that He is the Lord, than that He is the Son of David.[981]

[981] So great is the glory of the Son of God! David as well as Abraham alike, John 8:56, saw the day of Christ, the last great day we may suppose, when all His adversaries shall become the Lord’s footstool.—V. g.

Verse 45. - If David... Son? The argument is this: David speaks with highest reverence of Messiah, calling him his Lord: how is this attitude consistent with the fact that Messiah is David's Son? How can Messiah be both Son and Lord of David? We, who have learned the truth concerning the two natures of Christ, can readily answer the question. He is both "the Root and the Offspring of David" (Revelation 22:16). The Athanasian Creed offers the required solution of the seeming paradox: "God, of the substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds; and Man of the substance of his mother, born in the world; perfect God, and perfect Man... who although he be God and Man, yet he is not two, but one Christ." Here was an explanation (if the Pharisees took his words to heart) of much that had excited their indignation, and caused cavil and carping. He claimed to be the Messiah; and Messiah, as Scripture presented him, had a twofold nature. When, therefore, he asserted equality with the Father when he, "being man, made himself God" (John 10:33), he was vindicating that Divine nature which he as Messiah possessed. Jesus did not further elucidate this mystery. He had given food for reflection; he had unfolded the hidden meaning of Scripture; he had shown the shallowness of the popular exegesis; the knowledge was here; there was wanting only the will to raise the flower of faith in the heart of these obdurate hearers. Matthew 22:45
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