Chapter 21 records the triumphal entry of Christ
into Jerusalem. We now move into the section entitled, “The
Rejection of the King” (chapters 21–27). You will note
that chapter 21 begins with three definite signs to the
nation of Israel; and these are followed by three parables.
The signs were the presentation of the King, the purifying
of the Temple, and the cursing of the tree.
Three parables are recorded in chapters 21:23–
22:14. The first is the parable of the two sons. Here
Israel is portrayed as a son who is disobedient to his
father. The vineyard always speaks of Israel (Isaiah 5:1-7;
Psalm 80:8-16). By rejecting John the Baptist, the Jews had
disobeyed the Father. The sinners, however, heeded John’s
message and entered into the Kingdom of God!
The second parable is of the vineyard and
husbandmen. God did much for Israel, expecting the nation
to bear fruit for His glory; but the nation rebelled
against God and refused to bear fruit. God sent prophets
and servants to deal with them, but Israel mistreated them
and even killed them. Then God sent His Son, and they
killed Him. They even cast Him out of the vineyard (see
Hebrews 13:11-13). In these two parables Israel disobeys
the Father and crucifies the Son. In the parable of the
marriage feast, they resist the Spirit (God’s messenger) as
He invites them to the feast.
We must not read into the parable of the marriage
feast the blessed truth of the Church, the Bride of Christ,
which was later revealed. The idea here is simply that the
Father invites the guests (Israel) to enjoy blessings
because of His Son. However, the nation spurned the
invitations, and the King then turned to the Gentiles; as
was done in the Book of Acts, when the nation of Israel had
sealed its decision by killing Stephen and persecuting the
These three parables show the spiritual history of
Israel. She was called and chosen of God to be fruitful
(the vineyard and the fig tree), and she failed to bear
fruit. She disobeyed the Father (the parable of the two
sons), crucified the Son (the parable of the vineyard), and
resisted the Spirit (the parable of the marriage feast).
She is today set aside, and the blessings of Christ have
been given to the Gentiles “until the fullness of the
Gentiles be come in” (Romans 11:25).
MEMORY VERSE FOR TODAY:
Man now can be:
And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by
him to reconcile all things unto himself, by him, I say,
whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.