F E1 21:1-7. Bethpage. Arrival and Departure. F1 21:8-11. Jerusalem. The first entry into. G1 21:12-16. In the temple. Cleansing. E2 21:17. Bethany. Return to. F2 21:18-22. Jerusalem. Return to. G2 21:23-25:46. In the temple and on Olivet. Prediction. E3 26:1-17-. Bethany. Return to. F3 26:-17-29. Jerusalem. The Last Supper. G3 26:30-35. In the Mount of Olives. Prediction.
E1 o 1. Mission of the 2 Disciples. Begun. p 2,3. Commission given. q 4,5. Fulfillment of Prophecy. p 6. Commission carried out. o 7. Mission of the 2 Disciples.
Whereas, if we treat them in their chronological sequences, and have regard to the antecedent and consequent circumstances, the supposed discrepancies will disappear, and the similar, but diverse, expressions will be seen to be necessary to the different events.
In this present case, one entry (Matt. 21:1-9) takes place before the other, which is recorded in Mark 11:1-10, Luke 19:30-34, and John 12:12-15.
1. In Matthew the Lord had actually arrived at Bethphage. In Luke He "was come nigh" (engisen); in Mark "they were approaching" (engizousin).
2. In Matthew the village lay just off the road (apenanti); in Luke and Mark it was below them, and opposite (katenanti).
3. In the former, two animals were sent for and used; in the latter, only one.
4. In the former, the prophecy of Zech. 9:9, which required the two animals is said to have been fulfilled; in the latter, the prophecy was not said to be fulfilled, and only so much of it is quoted (John 12:15) as agrees with it.
5. The former seems to have been unexpected, for "all the city was moved, saying, 'Who is this?'" (Matt. 21:10, 11), while, if there was only one entry, the two accounts are inexplicable, seeing that the later and subsequent entry was prepared for : much people in the city "heard that He was coming", and "went forth to meet Him" (John 12:12, 13).
The latter therefore, was the great formal entry of the Lord, called "the Triumphal Entry", which took place on what is called "Palm Sunday".
The significance of the two animals, and the one, seems to be this:--
The first had special reference to the whole work of His mission. He came on the ass with its unbroken colt, the clothes being put some on one and some on the other, and the Lord sitting on "them" -- the clothes (not on both beasts). He came to cleanse the Temple, and make His final presentation of the King and the Kingdom.
But when He came on the one -- an ass's colt -- it was in judgment, to pronounce the doom on the city; and on the nation.
When He appears again it will be to a nation which will then say (as the result of Zech. 12:10); "Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord" (Matt. 23:39).
Click here for the events of the "six days before Passover"; and the notes on the various passages.
1 And when they drew nigh to Jerusalem (there were 2 entries: the 1st here: the 2nd on "the first day" of the following week [Mark 11:1-3. Luke 19:28-31. John 12:12-15]. See John 12:1), and had arrived at Bethphage (= House of Figs. Now Kefr et Tor. According to the Talmud Bethpage consisted of some buildings and the space of ground extending from the wall of Jerusalem about a mile [or half-way] toward the town of Bethany [now el'Azariyeh]), toward the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples, (Not Apostles)
2 Saying to them, "You go forward into the village just off the high road, and immediately you shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her (here the 2 are sent for, because Zech. 9:9 was to be fulfilled. In Mark, and Luke, only 1 [only 1 being necessary to fulfill the part of Zechariah quoted by John 12:14,15]): loose them, and bring them to Me.
3 And if any man say anything to you, you shall say, 'The Lord has need of them;' and straightway he will send them.
4 All this came to pass, that it might be fulfilled (cp. Luke 21:24 and 32) which was spoken [as well as written] through the prophet (quoted from Zech. 9:9), saying,
5 "Tell you the daughter of Zion, Behold, your King comes to you, meek, and sitting upon a beast of burden, and a colt the foal of an ass."
6 And the disciples went, and did as Jesus commanded them,
7 And led the ass, and the colt, and put on them their outer garments (Cp. 2 Kings 9:13 [a mark of respect]), and He took His seat upon them. (i.e the garments)
F1 r 8. Action. s 9. Cry. Made. s 10. Cry. Effect. r 11. Action.
8 And the greater part of the crowd (referring to the proportionate part, not the actual size) spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and were strewing them in the way. (Same word as "spread" in preceding clause. Eng. "straw" = to scatter straw. Here used of branches of trees.)
9 And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, "Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is He that comes in the name of Yehovah; Hosanna in the highest." (= save now. Aramaic Hoshi'an-na' = Help now. Quoted from Ps. 118:25,26. At the later entry [Luke 19:38] the cry was different in words, but similar in intent.)
10 And when He was come into Jerusalem, all the city was agitated (same word as "quake" [27:51] and "shake" [28:4. Heb. 12:26. Rev. 6:13]), saying, "Who is this?" (The city was obviously taken by surprise at this 1st entry; but the 2nd entry [Mark 11:1-11. Luke 19:29-44] was known, and the people "met Him" [John 12:18], hence, there was no surprise.)
11 And the multitude said, "This is Jesus the prophet from Nazareth of Galilee."
G1 t 12. Miracle. Cleansing. u 13. Scripture fulfilled. t 14-16-. Miracle. Healing. u -16. Scripture fulfilled.
12 And Jesus went into the temple courts of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple courts, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers (the half-shekel [worth about 9 cents] had to be paid on the 15th of the month Adar, by every Israelite [even the poorest]. In every city collectors sat to receive it. On the 25th day [18 or 19 days before the Passover] they began to sit in the temple; and they distrained if not paid. Change was given at a profit for the money changers), and the seats of them that sold doves, (Required for the Temple offerings)
13 And said to them, "It stands written, 'My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of robbers.'" (A composite quotation from Isa. 56:7, and Jer. 7:11)
14 And the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple; and He healed them.
15 And when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonders that He wrought, (these were the Lord's final miracles, wrought at this crisis, and must have been very special in character) and the children crying in the temple, and saying, "Hosanna son of David;" they were sore displeased, (See v.9
16 And said to Him, "Do you hear what these are saying?" (Quoted from Ps. 8:2)
And Jesus said to them, "Yes; have you never read, 'Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings you have prepared praise?'>" (= to perfect by preparing)
17 And He left them, and went outside the city into Bethany; and He passed the night there. (In the open air)
F2 v 18,19-. Words of the Lord. Curse. w -19. Miracle. Fig-tree withered. w 20. Miracle. Marvel of Disciples. v 21,22. Words of the Lord. Faith.
18 Now early in the morning as He returned into the city, He hungered.
19 And when He saw one (single) fig tree on the way, (learn the parable of Matt. 24.) He came to it, and found nothing thereon (see Mark 11:13), but leaves only, (What was the sin in the Garden of Eden covered with?) and said to it, "Let no fruit grow on you henceforward forever." (= for the age, i.e. to the end of that Dispensation. The fig tree represents Israel's national privilege [see Judges 9:10], and that is to be restored [Rom. 11:2,26.)
And at once the fig tree withered away.
20 And when the disciples saw it, they marveled, saying, "How soon is the fig tree withered away!"
21 Jesus answered and said to them, "Truly I say to you, If you have faith, (the condition is quite hypothetical) and doubt not, you shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if you shall say to this mountain, 'Be you removed, and be you cast into the sea;' (it was a common proverb to say to a great teacher, who removed difficulties, that he was "a rooter up of mountains". See Luke 16:6) it shall be done. (Wilt the words of the Kenites [the son's of Cain] and Satan at the last trump)
22 And all things, whatsoever you shall ask in prayer, believing, you shall receive [it, if it be His will]." (From 26:39-44. Jas. 5:14,15. 1 John 5:14,15. This is the one abiding condition of all prayer; and this Ellipsis must always be supplied.)
G2 H 21:23-22:46. Priests and Elders. Controversy. J 23:1-12. Teaching. Crowds and Disciples. Moral. H 23:13-39. Scribes and Pharisees. Denunciation. J 24:1-25:46. Teaching. Disciples. Prophetic.
H K 21:23-27. Questions. Chief Priests and Elders. L 21:28-44. Pharisees. Two sons and vineyard. M 21:45. Conviction. M 21:46. Conspiracy. L 22:1-14. Parable. Marriage of King's Son. K 22:15-46. Questions. Pharisees and Sadducees.
K x 23. Their question. Put. y 24,25-. His question. Put. z -25,26-. Their reasoning. z -26. Their reason. y 27-. His question. Unanswered. x -27. Their question. Answered.
23 And when He was come into the temple courts, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to Him as He was teaching, and said, "By what kind of authority do You these things? and who gave You this authority?"
24 And Jesus answered and said to them, "I also will ask you one question, which if (the condition being quite dependent on a contingency) you tell Me, I also will tell you by what authority I do these things.
25 The baptism of John, from where was it? from heaven, or from men?"
And they reasoned with themselves, saying, "If we shall say, 'From heaven;' He will say to us, 'Why did ye not then believe him?'
26 But if we shall say, 'From men;' we fear the crowd;
for all hold John as a prophet."
27 And they answered Jesus, and said, "We do not know."
And He said to them, "Neither do I tell you by what authority I do these things.
L N1 28-32. The 2 sons. Disobedience. N2 33-44. The Husbandmen. Rebellion.
N1 a1 28-. Appeal for opinion. b1 -28-30. The 2 Sons. Contrasted. a2 31-. Appeal for decision. b2 -31-. The 2 Sons. Answer. a3 -31,32. Application.
28 But what do you think? (Here follow the 3 parables spoken in the Temple)
A certain man had two children; and he came to the first, and said, 'Son, go today, work in my vineyard.'
29 He answered and said, 'I do not choose [to go]:' but afterward he repented, and went.
30 And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered and said, 'I go, sir:' and went not.
31 Which of the two did the desire of his father?"
They say to Him, "The first."
Jesus said to them, "Truly I say to you, That the tax-gatherers and the harlots go before you into the kingdom of God.
32 For John came to you in the way of righteousness, and you believed him not: but the tax-gatherers and the harlots believed him: and you, when you had seen it, repented not afterward, that you might believe him.
N2 O 33-41. The Parable given. P 42. The Scripture cited (Ps. 118:22). O 43. The Parable. Its application. P 44. The Scripture cited (Isa. 8:14).
O c 33. The Owner making His Vineyard. d 34-39. The Husbandmen. Conduct. c 40. The Owner coming to His Vineyard. d 41. The Husbandmen. Judgment.
33 Hear another (i.e similar) parable: There was a certain master of a house, which planted a vineyard, and placed about it a fence, and dug a wine-press in it, and built a tower (for the watchmen), and let it out to husbandmen, and went abroad: (There were 3 kinds of leases:  where the laborers received a proportion of the produce for their payment;  where full rent was payed;  where a definite part of the produce was to be given by the lessees, whatever the harvest was. Such leases were given by the year, or for life, or were even hereditary. From v.34 and Mark 12:3 the word "of" shows that the later kind of lease is refereed to in this parable)
34 And when the season of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, that they might receive the fruits of it.
35 And the husbandmen took his servants, and one they beat, and one they killed, and one they stoned.
36 Again, he sent other servants more than the first: and they did to them likewise.
37 But at last he sent to them his own son (here is the real answer to v.23), saying, 'They will stand in awe of my son.'
38 But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, 'This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us hold on to his inheritance.'
39 And they caught him, and cast him outside of the vineyard (as in Heb. 13:12), and slew him.
40 When the lord therefore of the vineyard shall have come, what will he do to those husbandmen?"
41 They say to Him, "He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard to other husbandmen, of such character that they shall render him the fruits in their seasons."
42 Jesus says to them, "Did you never read in the scriptures, (quoted from Ps. 118:22. Cp. Acts 4:10-12) 'The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is Yehovah's doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes?'
43 Therefore say I to you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. (The new Israel, as prophesied in Isa. 66:7-14.)
44 And whosoever shall fall upon this Stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder." (Supposed to mean winnow or scatter as dust. But in a Papyrus [Fayyum, 2nd or 3rd cent. A.D.] it is used for ruining a thing in some way. This supplies the contrast here.)
45 And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard His parables, they got to know that He spake of them.
46 But when they sought to lay hands on Him, they feared the crowds, because they were holding Him as a prophet.