11 May 2018
GraceNotes – A Journey of Discovery
Scripture: Matthew 22:41-46 (Click link for scripture in Bible Gateway)
41 Then, surrounded by the Pharisees, Jesus asked them a question: 42 “What do you think about the Messiah? Whose son is he?” They replied, “He is the son of David.” 43 Jesus responded, “Then why does David, speaking under the inspiration of the Spirit, call the Messiah ‘my Lord’? For David said, 44 ‘The LORD said to my Lord, Sit in the place of honor at my right hand until I humble your enemies beneath your feet.’ 45 Since David called the Messiah ‘my Lord,’ how can the Messiah be his son?” 46 No one could answer him. And after that, no one dared to ask him any more questions. (Matthew 22:41–46 NLT)
The Pharisees, the Sadducees, and the Herodians had all had their shot at trying to trap Jesus into incriminating himself by contradicting Jewish scriptures or incriminating himself by denying Caesar’s authority to tax and rule the nation. Jesus presented them with a question that was not intended to trap them, but was, in fact, the most important question of all. He asked the question in a way that made them stop and think very seriously. He asked, “Whose son is the Messiah?” They quickly gave him the “chapter and verse” answer, “He is the son of David! (Of course!)”
Then Jesus quoted from Psalm 110 pointing out that by calling the Messiah “Lord” David was saying the Messiah was greater than David. This was a dilemma for the Pharisees, because a son couldn’t be greater than his father. The only one greater than the king is God, so now they’re stuck! Only Jesus, God in flesh, could be both David’s son (Jesus’ favorite title for himself, the Son of Man) and God’s Son. This points out the foolishness of legalism, “proof-texting”, and knowledge of Scripture without the quickening of the Holy Spirit.
For us, friends, here’s two really important takeaways from this brief incident: 1) We can know all the laws, history, prophecies, and Bible verses, but unless we are looking at Jesus through eyes opened by the Spirit, we’ll never see clearly. 2) The most important question we’ll ever answer is the question Jesus asked his disciples in Matthew 16, “Who do you say that I am?” We know Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God, and we’re learning to know him as Jesus, the son of man.
Father, Please don’t let us get caught up in mind games. We believe in Jesus Christ, your Son and we believe in Jesus Christ the son of man. Now show us how to know him as our Lord and Savior and Shepherd and Friend! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.