Vs 4 (Jesus sent two disciples) … to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet …
Vs 6 The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them.
Vs 13 Jesus said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’
Vs 16 And Jesus said to them, “… have you never read …”
Vs 26 (The chief priests and the elders) were afraid of the crowd …
Vs 42 Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures …
‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone”
Vs 43 Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people producing its fruits.
Much is happening in Matthew 21, from Jesus entering Jerusalem, to Jesus overturning the temple tables, to the chief priests threatening and questioning the authority of Jesus.
What stands out to me today throughout this chapter is the motivating factor behind each of the major players here.
What motivated each was one of three things: Scripture, the words of Jesus, and fear
Jesus consistently acted and interacted with others through the Scripture …
“to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet”
“it is written”
“have you never read”
“have you never read in Scripture”
The disciples were motivated by the words of Jesus …
“the disciples did as Jesus directed them”
The chief priests and elders were motivated by fear …
“the elders were afraid of the crowd”
I will have a motivation behind my actions.
How I live my life will not simply be from independent thoughts in my head.
I will have something else prompting me”
The Word of God … or … The fear of man!
The Word of God can lead to direct action … “The disciples did as Jesus directed them.”
The fear of man will lead to constant equivocating. … “If I do this, then what is he going to say? If I do that, then what are they going to think?”
So what generally fills my days? … Direct action or equivocation?
I’m often thought of as a “nice” guy. … This sound fine, but I increasingly don’t think of this as particularly virtuous.
“Peaceful” or “Gentle” or “Kind” or “Patient” or “Self-controlled” … Absolutely!
They can each seem somewhat synonymous with “nice”, until you consider their source.
They are all produced the Holy Spirit. They are spiritual fruit.
But “nice” … this can often be motivated by fear of man, and actually create a hesitancy in living out the Word of God.
And this is ultimately anything but nice.
At the end of this chapter, Jesus gives a stern warning.
He says who the Kingdom of God will be taken from and given to.
It will be taken from those who reject the cornerstone of the Word of God, Jesus.
It will be given to those who produce fruit.
Thank you, God, for your Word
Help me to follow it directly
Show me, Holy Spirit, where I am fearing man
Give me courage to speak and act in accordance with Your Word
In Jesus name