And Jesus answered and said, while he taught in the temple, How say the scribes that Christ is the son of David?…
I. QUESTION OF OUR LORD IN TURN. Our Lord had by this time been asked, and had triumphantly answered, the most perplexing, difficult, and delicate questions that the ingenuity of man could devise. His adversaries had been signally confuted, and covered with shame. These questions were five in all One concerned his authority; another was political, about the tribute money; the third was doctrinal, about the resurrection; the fourth speculative, about the greatest commandment; and the fifth disciplinary, about the adulteress. By his more than masterly reply to the first, he defeated the Sanhedrim: by his reply to the second, he surprised and silenced the Pharisees and Herodians; by his answer to the third, he confuted, if he did not convince, the sceptical Sadducees; by his reply to the fourth, he satisfied the Pharisaic scribe, learned in the Law; by his answer to the fifth, he settled, if not to the satisfaction of scribes and Pharisees, at least to their shame, the question of discipline. It is now time that, having passed this ordeal, he should retaliate.
II. OBJECT OF HIS COUNTER-QUESTION. Our Lord's design was not so much to show them their ignorance, and overwhelm them with confusion, as to instruct them with respect to the true character and person of the Christ. Their low views were to be elevated, their carnal notions were to be spiritualized, their blind eyes were to be enlightened. Their idea of the person of Messiah was that he would be just a man like themselves; of his position, that he would be a powerful temporal king; and of his reign, that it would extend over a great earthly kingdom. By his question he let light in upon their dark minds in reference to all these subjects. With the Scriptures in their hands, and all their trifling about the minute things concerning the letter, they had no right spiritual apprehension of their long-desired and much-respected Messiah. His question proves to them that Messiah was not only human, but Divine; not only David's Son, but David's Lord; that before his exaltation he must suffer humiliation. They expected a triumphant Messiah, but were not prepared for his lowly condition as a sufferer; they overleaped the cross, expecting all at once and from the first the crown. Crucifixion before glorification was what they could not understand; a spiritual kingdom of righteousness and peace and joy they would not understand, "their wish being fat to their thoughts."
III. PRACTICAL USE OF THE QUESTION. "What think ye of Christ?" was his ques as recorded by St. Matthew. We repeat to ourselves and others the same que: - What think we - "What think ye of Christ?" What think ye of his life - that less life, that surprising life, that life which believer and unbeliever alike so admire, and even rival each other in lauding and extolling? What think ye of events of that life - its purity and yet its suffering, its power and yet its sorrows? What think ye of his death - so wonderful in many ways, so singular in all its asp and so efficacious in all respects? What think ye of his resurrection? Are ye risen with him, to seek the things above? Do ye look to him as the firstfruits of a glorious harvest? and are ye seeking a part in the resurrection of the just? What think ye of his ascension? Are ye satisfied that he has ascended up on high, leading captl captive, and having received gifts, even for rebellious men? And have ye shared in t gifts? What think ye of his intercession? Do ye feel that he is interceding for and are ye glad - right glad - of having an Advocate with the Father, even Jesus Christ the righteous? By your answers to such questions ye may judge your state, entertain, we trust, "good hope through grace." - J.J.G.
Parallel VersesKJV: And Jesus answered and said, while he taught in the temple, How say the scribes that Christ is the Son of David?