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w Ps. lxxı 9.

Cant. viii. 11.
Isa. v.l.
Jer. ii. 21.

God before you. 32 For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not:,' but the pub- ' I. uke iil. 12, licans and the harlots believed him : and ye, when ye had seen it, t repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.

33 Hear another parable : There was a a certain householder, w which planted à vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, Jer. li. 21. and let it out to husbandmen, and "x went into a far sik: xxv. 14, country : 34 and when the time of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, y that they might y Cant. viii. 11, receive w the fruits of it. 35 2 And the husbandmen took “Xiva: his servants, and beat one, and killed another, and stoned another. 36 Again he sent other servants more than the first : and they did unto them likewise. 37 But last of all 15. Heb.'xi.

t The Vatican MS. has, did not even repent.
u literally, a man (which was) an householder.

the original has only, left the country. Wor, his fruits.

Cant. viii. 11,

z 9 Chron.

xxiv. 21:
XXvi. 16.
Neb. ix. 28.
ch. v. 12.
xxiii. 34, 37.
Acts vii. 52.
1 Thess. ii.
15. Heb. xi.
36, 37.

prefer this latter on account of the ex. of course, the continued rejection of God's planation following :-“go before,'—not prophets by the people of Israel, till at entirely without hope for you, that you last they rejected and killed His only Son. may follow, but not necessarily implying The householder planted a vineyard : i.e. your following. The door of mercy was selected it out of all His world, and fenced not yet shut for them : see John xii. 35: it in, and dug a receptacle for the juice Luke xxiii. 34. The idea of shewing the (in the rock or ground, to keep it cool, way' by being their example, is also in. into which it flowed from the press above, cluded. There were publicans among the through a grated opening), and built a disciples, and probably repentant harlots tower (of recreation-or observation to among the women who followed the Lord. watch the crops). This exactly coincides

32.] in the way of righteousness, with the state of the Jewish nation, under not only in the way of God's command covenant with God as His people. All ments, so often spoken of, but in the very these expressions are in Isaiah v. The path of ascetic purity which you so much letting out to husbandmen was probably approve; yet perhaps it were better to let that kind of letting where the tenant the simpler sense here be the predominant pays his rent in kind, although the fruits one, and take righteousness for ' repent. may be understood of money. God began ance,' as Noah is called a preacher of about 430 years after the Exodus to send righteousness (2 Pet. ii. 5) in similar cir. His prophets to the people of Israel, and cumstances. repent afterward are continued even till John the Baptist ; but words repeated from the parable (ver. 29), all was in vain; they “ persecuted the and serving to fasten the application on prophets,” casting them out and putting the hearers.

them to death. (See Neh. ix. 26: Matt. 33–46.] PARABLE OF THE VINEYARD xxiii. 31, 37: Heb. xi. 36–38.) The LET OUT TO HUSBANDMEN. Mark xii. different sendings must not be pressed ; 1–12. Luke xx. 9–19. This parable is they probably imply the fulness and sufin intimate connexion with Isa. v. 1 ff., and ficiency of warnings given, and set forth was certainly intended by our Lord as an the longsuffering of the Householder; and express application of that passage to the the increasing rebellion of the husbandJews of His time. Both St. Mark and St. men is shewn by their increasing ill-treatLuke open it with a “began to speak ...," ment of the messengers. 37.] See as a fresh beginning, by our Lord, of a Luke ver. 13: Mark ver. 6. Our Lord series of parables. St. Luke adds, that it sets forth His heavenly Father in human was spoken to the people. Its subject is, wise deliberating, “What shall I do ?

a Ps. ii. 8.

Heb. i. 9.

xxvii. l. John xi. 53.

och. xxvi. 50,

&c. Acts ii.


IV. 7: xviii.

he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence

my son. 38 But when the husbandmen saw the son, they a Problem said < among themselves, a This is the heir ; b come, let us b Ps. ii. 2. ch. xvi. 3:

.3: kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance. 39 C And they Johu xi. 58. caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard, and slew Acts iv, 27.

i. him. 40 When the lord therefore of the vineyard cometh,

what will he do unto those husbandmen? 41 They say

unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, d Acts xiii. 40: d and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, Biom. viii. 28. which shall render him the fruits in their seasons. 42 Jesus

& or, within. (Luke) and " it may be they will reverence gelists. See also John xix. 17, and Heb. him," to signify His gracious adoption, for xiii. 11, 12. In Mark the order is difman's sake, of every means which may ferent, they killed him, and cast him out turn sinners to repentance. The difference of the vineyard.40, 41.] See Isa. v. here is fully made between the Son and all 5. All means had been tried, and nothing the other messengers; see Mark,—“having but judgment was now left. St. Mark and yet therefore one Son, his wellbeloved ..." St. Luke omit the important words they and, as Stier remarks, this is the real and say unto him, though St. Luke has given direct answer to the question in ver. 23. us the key to them, in telling us that the The Son appears here, not in his character parable was spoken in the hearing of the of Redeemer, but in that of a preacher-a people, who seem to have made the answer. messenger demanding the fruits of the Perhaps however the Pharisees may have vineyard. (See ch. iv. 17.) 38. This made this answer, having missed, or preis] So Nicodemus, John iii. 2, “ we know tended to miss, the sense of the parable; that thou art a teacher come from God," but from the strong language used, I ineven at the beginning of His ministry; cline to the former view. Whichever said how much more then after three years it, it was a self-condemnation, similar to spent in His divine working. The latent that in ch. xxvii. 25: the last form, as consciousness that Jesus was the Messiah, Nitzsch finely remarks (cited by Stier), expressed in the prophecy of Caiaphas of the divine warnings to men, when they (John xi. 49-52; compare the Thou themselves speak of the deeds which they hast said of our ch. xxvi. 64), added no are about to do, and pronounce judgment doubt to the guilt of the Jewish rulers upon them. So striking, even up to the in rejecting and crucifying Him, however last moment, is the mysterious union of this consciousness may have been accomo human free-will with divine foresight (see panied with ignorance of one kind or other Acts ii. 23: Gen. 1. 20), that after all other in all of them,—see Acts iii. 17 and note. warnings frustrated, the conscience of the

the heir] This the Son is in virtue sinner himself interposes to save him of His human nature : see Heb. i. 1, 2. from ruin. In the original the adverb

come, let us kill him] The very rendered miserablyis that belonging words of Gen. xxxvii. 20, where Joseph's to the adjective rendered " wicked.This brethren express a similar resolution: and could hardly be given in a version in no doubt used by the Lord in reference to English: it may be represented by some that history, so deeply typical of His re- such expression as, “ He will destroy jection and exaltation. This resolution them wretchedly, wretches as they are." had actually been taken, see John xi. 53:

The which, applied to persons, is and that immediately after the manifesta- not equivalent to who: it means, of a kind, tion of His power as the Son of God who: "who" would identify, whichin the raising of Lazarus, and also imme classifies. They do not specify who, but diately after Caiaphas's prophecy.

only of what sort, the new tenants will be. let us seize] See John xi. 48. As far as The clause is peculiar to Matthew. We this, the parable is History: from this may observe that our Lord here makes point, Prophecy. 39.] This is partly when the lord ... cometh coincide with to be understood of our Lord being given the destruction of Jerusalem, which is up to the heathen to be judged; but also incontestably the overthrow of the wicked literally, as related by all three Evan- husbandmen. This passage forms therefore


e Ps. cxviii. 22.

Isa.xxviii. 16.

1 Pet. ii.6, 7.

Isa, viii. 14,

xii, 3. Rom. ix. 83. 1 Pet.

ii. 8. h Isa. lx. 12.

Dan. ii. 41.

i ver. 11.

Luke vii. 16.
John vii. 40.

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saith unto them, e Did ye never read in the scriptures, The e Ps.cxvili: 22 stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the site. Il. 20. head of the corner : this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes ? 43 Therefore say I unto you,

the kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given Sch. viii. 12. to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. 44 And y whosoever 8 shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on ® isa. Zecil, whomsoever it shall fall, hit will grind him to powder. 18. lipn 45 And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his ha... parables, they perceived that he spake of them. 46 But when they sought to lay hands on him, i they feared the i velike v i. 16. multitude, because they took him for a prophet.

a Luke xiv. 16. XXII. And Jesus answered a and spake unto them keke xix.7,"

y render, he that hath fallen. an important key to our Lord's prophecies, see Luke ii. 34: but on whomsoever, as and a decisive justification for those who, its enemy, it shall come in vengeance, as like myself, firmly hold that the coming prophesied in Daniel, it shall dash him in of the Lord is in many places to be iden. pieces. Meyer maintains that the meantified, primarily, with that overthrow. ing of the word is not this, but literally

42.] A citation from the same shall winnow him,' throw him off as chatř. Psalm of triumph from which the multi. But the confusion thus occasioned in the tudes had taken their Hosannas. This parable is quite unnecessary. The result verse is quoted with the same signification of winnowing is complete separation and in Acts iv. 11: 1 Pet. ii. 6, 7, where also dashing away of the worthless part : and the cognate passage Isa. xxviii. 16 is it is surely far better to understand this quoted, as in Rom. ix. 33. The builders result as the work of the falling of the answer to the husband men, and the ad. stone, than to apply the words to a part dition is made in this changed similitude of the operation for which the falling of to shew them that though they might reject a stone is so singularly unsuited. and kill the Son, yet He would be vic. 45, 46.] All three Evangelists have this torious in the end. the head of the addition. St. Mark besides says "and they corner] The corner-stone binds together left him and went their way,answering both walls of the building ; so Christ unites to our ch. xxii. 22. Supposing St. Mark's Jews and Gentiles in Himself. See the insertion of these words to be in the precomparison beautifully followed into detail, cise place, we have the following parable Eph. i. 20—22. On marvellous in spoken to the people and disciples : see our eyes, compare Acts iv. 13, 14.

below. 43.] Our Lord here returns to the parable, CHAP. XXII. 1-14.] PARABLE OF THE and more plainly than ever before an- MARRIAGE OF THE KING's Son. Peculiar nounces to them their rejection by God. to Matthew. A parable resembling this The vineyard is now the kingdom of God. in several particulars occurs in Luke xiv. The nation here spoken of is not the Gen- 15—24, yet we must not hastily set it tiles in general, but the Church of the truly down as the same. Many circumstances faithful,—the holy nation, peculiar are entirely different: the locality and oc. people" of 1 Pet. ü. 9: see Acts xv. 14. casion of delivery different, and in both

44.] A reference to Isa. viii. 14, 15, cases stated with precision. And the difand Dan. ii. 44, and a plain identification ference in the style of the parables is corof the stone there mentioned with that in respondent to the two periods of their utPs. cxviii. The stone is the whole kingdom" terance. That in Luke is delivered earlier and power of the Messiah summed up in in our Lord's ministry, when the enmity Himself. he that hath fallen. ...] of the Pharisees had yet not fully mani. he that takes offence, that makes it a stone fested itself: the refusal of the guests is of stumbling, (or perhaps, he that is super- more courteous, their only penalty, excluimposed on it, as a stone in the building: sion ;-here they maltreat the servants, but not so probably, as the breaking would and are utterly destroyed. This binds want due interpretation,) shall be broken: the parable in close connexion with that

again by parables, and said, 2 The kingdom of heaven 2 is like unto a a certain king, which made a b marriage for his son, 3 and sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. 4 Again,

he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are b Prov. ix. 2. bidden, Behold, I have prepared my o dinner : "my d oxen

and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. 5 But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to e his farm, another to his merchandise : 6 and the remnant took his servants, and entreated them

spitefully, and slew them. 7f But when the king heard 2 literally, was likened a literally, a man (which was) a king.

b render, wedding-feast. N.B. This is not corrected in verses 4, 8, 9, 10: but it is in the original the same word throughout.

C render, banquet: see note. d render, bulls. e render, his own.

f read, But the king was wroth. of the wicked husbandmen in the last and preached this same truth, with howchapter, and with this period of our Lord's ever the weighty addition of Come unto course. 2.7 The householder of the Me. 4. We now come to a different former parable is the King here, who period of the Evangelic announcement. makes a marriage for his Son. The word Now, all is ready: the sacrifice, or the thus rendered is not always necessarily meat for the feast, is slain. We can 'a marriage, but any great celebration, as hardly help connecting this with the deaccession to the throne, or coming of age, clarations of our Lord in John vi. 51–59, &c. Here however the notion of a mar- and supposing that this second invitation riage is certainly included ; and the inter is the preaching of the Apostles and Evanpretation is, the great marriage supper gelists after the great sacrifice was offered. (Rev. xix. 9) of the Son of God : i.e. His That thus the slaying of the Lord is not full and complete union to His Bride the the doing of the invited, but is mentioned Church in glory: which would be to the as done for the Feast, is no real difficulty. guests the ultimate result of accepting the Both sides of the truth may be included invitation. See Eph. v. 25—27. The dif- in the parable, as they are in Acts ii. 23, ficulty, of the totality of the guests in this and indeed wherever it is set forth. The case constituting the Bride, may be les discourse of Peter in that chapter is the sened by regarding the ceremony as an best commentary on “all things are ready, enthronization, in which the people are come to the marriage.The meal desigregarded as being espoused to their prince. nated is not that which we understand by On the whole imagery, compare Ps. xlv. dinner, but the meal at noon, with which

3.] These servants are not the pro- the course of marriage festivities began. phets, not the same as the servants in This will give even greater precision to ch. xxi. 34, as generally interpreted :- the the meaning of the parable as applying to parable takes up its ground nearly from these preparatory foretastes of the great the conclusion of that former, and is alto- feast, which the Church of God now gether a New Testament parable. The enjoys. As the former parable had an office of these servants was to summon those 0. T. foundation, so this : viz. Prov. ix. who had been invited, as was customary 1 ff. 5, 6.] Two classes are here (see Esth. v. 8 and vi. 14); these being represented: the irreligious and careless the Jewish people, who had been before, people (notice his own farm, bringing out by their prophets and covenant, invited. the selfish spirit), and the rulers, who These first servants are then the first mes persecuted and slew God's messengers. sengers of the Gospel,-John the Bap- Stephen,- James the brother of John, tist, the Twelve, and the Seventy,- who James the Just, and doubtless other of the preached, saying “The Kingdom of heaven Apostles, of whose end we have no certain is at hand.' And even our Lord Himself account, perished by the hands or instigamust in some sort be here included, inas- tion of the Jews : they persecuted Paul much as He took the form of a servant, all through his life, and most probably

Luke xix. 27.

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xix. 8.

thereof, he was wroth : and he sent forth chis armies, and c Pan. ix, 26., destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. 8 Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not d worthy. 9 Go ye d chat2. 11, 18 therefore into the 8 highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. 10 So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered e together all as many as e ch. xiii. 88, they found, both bad and good : and the wedding was furnished with guests.

fEph. iv. 24. 11 And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw Col. iii. 10,

h. ill. 10,

12. Rev. fil. there a man' which had not on a wedding garment: 12 and 1 xvi. 167" & see note,

h render, filled. brought him to his death at last: and the 11, 12.7 This second part of the parable is guilt of the death of the Lord abode upon in direct reference to the word of prothem (ch. xxvii. 25). They repeatedly phecy, Zeph. i. 7, 8: The Lord hath preinsulted and scourged the Apostles (see pared a sacrifice, he hath bid his guests. Acts iv. 3 ; v. 18, 40). 9.] The oc And it shall come to pass in the day of currence of this verse before the opening the Lord's sacrifice, that I will punish .... of the Feast to the Gentiles has perplexed all such as are clothed with strange appasome interpreters: but it is strictly exact : rel.The coming of the King to see his for although the Gospel was preached to guests is the final and separating Judgthe Gentiles forty years before the destruc ment of the Church, see ch. xxv. 19,-tion of Jerusalem, yet the final rejection when that distinction shall be made, which of the Jews and the substitution of the God's ministers have no power nor right to Gentiles did not take place till that event. make in admissions into the visible Church.

his armies] The Roman armies ; Yet as Trench remarks (Parables, p. 207), a similar expression for the unconscious this coming of the King is not exclusively instruments of God's anger is used Isa. the final one, but every trying and sifting x. 5; xiii. 5 : Jer. xxv.9: Joel ii. 25.

judgment adumbrates it in some measure. their city) no longer His, but their city.

With regard to the wedding garCompare your house, ch. xxiii. 38. This ment, we must not, I think, make too is a startling introduction of the interpre- much of the usually cited Oriental custom tation into the parable; we knew not of presenting the guests with such gar. before that they had a city. 8-10.] ments at feasts. For (1) it is not distinctly On not worthy, see Acts xiii. 46. were: proved that such a custom existed; the the past tense passes them by as done passages usually quoted (Gen. xlv. 22: with. The highways here spoken of are Judg. xiv. 12: 2 Kings v. 22) are nothe places of resort at the meetings of thing to the purpose; 2 Kings x. 22 streets, the squares, or confluences of ways. shews that the worshippers of Baal were De Wette and Meyer are wrong in saying provided with vestments, and at a feast : that they are not in the city, for that and at the present day those who are was destroyed :' it is not the city of the admitted to the presence of Royalty in the murderers, but that in which ihe feast East are clothed with a caftan : but all is supposed to be held, which is spoken of: this does not make good the assumption : not Jerusalem, but God's world.

and (2) even granting it, it is not to be bad and good] Both the open sinners and pressed, as being manifestly not the salient the morally good together. See ch. xiii. point of this part of the parable. The 47, where the net collects of every kind, guest was bound to provide himself with Stier remarks, that we might expect, this proper habit, out of respect to the from ch. xxi. 31, to find the guest who feast and its Author : how this was to be by and by is expelled, among the good. provided, does not here appear, but does Here, so to speak, the first act of the para- elsewhere. The garment is the imputed ble closes; and here is the situation of the and inherent righteousness of the Lord Church at this day ;-collected out of all Jesus, put on symbolically in Baptism the earth, and containing both bad and (Gal. iii. 27), and really by a true and good. was filled is emphatic.

living faith (ib. ver. 26),— without which

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