Luke 20

* The priests and scribes question Christ's authority. (1-8) The

parable of the vineyard and husbandmen. (9-19) Of giving

tribute. (20-26) Concerning the resurrection. (27-38) The

scribes silenced. (39-47)

1-8 Men often pretend to examine the evidences of revelation,

and the truth of the gospel, when only seeking excuses for their

own unbelief and disobedience. Christ answered these priests and

scribes with a plain question about the baptism of John, which

the common people could answer. They all knew it was from

heaven, nothing in it had an earthly tendency. Those that bury

the knowledge they have, are justly denied further knowledge. It

was just with Christ to refuse to give account of his authority,

to those who knew the baptism of John to be from heaven, yet

would not believe in him, nor own their knowledge.
9-19 Christ spake this parable against those who resolved not

to own his authority, though the evidence of it was so full. How

many resemble the Jews who murdered the prophets and crucified

Christ, in their enmity to God, and aversion to his service,

desiring to live according to their lusts, without control! Let

all who are favoured with God's word, look to it that they make

proper use of their advantages. Awful will be the doom, both of

those who reject the Son, and of those who profess to reverence

Him, yet render not the fruits in due season. Though they could

not but own that for such a sin, such a punishment was just, yet

they could not bear to hear of it. It is the folly of sinners,

that they persevere in sinful ways, though they dread the

destruction at the end of those ways.
20-26 Those who are most crafty in their designs against Christ

and his gospel, cannot hide them. He did not give a direct

answer, but reproved them for offering to impose upon him; and

they could not fasten upon any thing wherewith to stir up either

the governor or the people against him. The wisdom which is from

above, will direct all who teach the way of God truly, to avoid

the snares laid for them by wicked men; and will teach our duty

to God, to our rulers, and to all men, so clearly, that opposers

will have no evil to say of us.
27-38 It is common for those who design to undermine any truth

of God, to load it with difficulties. But we wrong ourselves,

and wrong the truth of Christ, when we form our notions of the

world of spirits by this world of sense. There are more worlds

than one; a present visible world, and a future unseen world;

and let every one compare this world and that world, and give

the preference in his thoughts and cares to that which deserves

them. Believers shall obtain the resurrection from the dead,

that is the blessed resurrection. What shall be the happy state

of the inhabitants of that world, we cannot express or conceive,

#1Co 2:9|. Those that are entered into the joy of their Lord,

are entirely taken up therewith; when there is perfection of

holiness there will be no occasion for preservatives from sin.

And when God called himself the God of these patriarchs, he

meant that he was a God all-sufficient to them, #Ge 17:1|, their

exceeding great Reward, #Ge 15:1|. He never did that for them in

this world, which answered the full extent of his undertaking;

therefore there must be another life, in which he will do that

for them, which will completely fulfil the promise.
39-47 The scribes commended the reply Christ made to the

Sadducees about the resurrection, but they were silenced by a

question concerning the Messiah. Christ, as God, was David's

Lord; but Christ, as man, was David's son. The scribes would

receive the severest judgement for defrauding the poor widows,

and for their abuse of religion, particularly of prayer, which

they used as a pretence for carrying on worldly and wicked

plans. Dissembled piety is double sin. Then let us beg of God to

keep us from pride, ambition, covetousness, and every evil

thing; and to teach us to seek that honour which comes from him

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