The Tuesday Before the Crucifixion
This is a summary of a series of posts on “Passion Tuesday” — the Tuesday before our Lord’s crucifixion.
“Whose is This Image and Superscription?” — A coin in the British Museum shows clearly that the coin the Pharisees and Herodians brought to Jesus was an idolatrous coin, and Jesus used this fact to reveal their hypocrisy. (This article is also part of the “Bible in the British Museum” series.)
Misusing Matthew 22:21: “Render Unto Caesar” — Too often, modern applications of this passage miss the point. “As so often, when you ask the Lord a question, the answer turns out to be a claim on your life.”
“By What Authority?” — The Claims of Messiah — The first question of the day came from the chief priests and elders, the religious authorities. This post looks at the Messianic claims and actions of Jesus, the background to their question. They asked who gave Him the right to do these things, which only Messiah could legitimately do.
“By What Authority?” — Jesus Answers the Question — Their question was appropriate, and the idea that Jesus used a trick to dodge it is wrong. “Jesus answered their question, but His answer revealed that they had asked the wrong question. Their real problem, their real question, was not about authority at all — it was unbelief.”
Matthew 21:28-32 — The Parable of the Two Sons — In the “By What Authority” question, the leaders of the Jews had challenged Jesus on the basis of a passage in Malachi 3. Jesus answered in keeping with that passage. Then, He told a parable which drew on the very same Old Testament chapter and book to rebuke and warn them over their disobedience to the Father.
The Parable of the Husbandmen — to Kill the Son — The Old Testament background of this parable, with the recent events before this interaction, sheds more light on the parable — and “the spirit of the chief priests and scribes lives on today.”
The Parable of the Husbandmen — the Chief Cornerstone — Again, Jesus quotes the Old Testament, showing that even the unbelief of the Jewish leaders was prophesied, yet another proof of His identity as the Messiah. And the prophecy was in exactly the same Psalm which prophesied the words of praise from two days before (Palm Sunday).
The Withered Fig Tree — the Old Testament Symbolism — “As usual, when we want to understand something in the earthly life of our Saviour, it is a good idea to start by looking at the Old Testament.”
The Withered Fig Tree — One Year Before — To understand why Jesus cursed the fig tree, we need to not only recognise the Old Testament symbolism of the fig tree, we also need to look back to a parable Jesus had taught one year before — involving a fig tree.
The Withered Fig Tree — Nothing But Leaves — A basic understanding of breba figs ends a lot of confusion about this event. When we connect the Old Testament symbolism, the earlier parable, and fig fruit cycles, the meaning of this “living parable” is clear.