The Final Presentation of Christ as Son of David and King of Israel
Matthew 20:29 - 25:46

This section records the final presentation of Christ as Son of David and true King of Israel. We might wonder, why is a final presentation needed? Hadn't the Lord already been rejected in ch.11-12, and hadn't He already withdrawn from the nation in ch.14-15? Yes. But this final presentation is necessary to fulfill the measure of Israel's sin, and accomplish the counsels of God. In Daniel 9 we read about "Messiah the prince". It was necessary in the counsels of God that Christ come to Israel as their rightful Prince, even though He would be rejected. This section can be divided as follows:

Two Blind Men (Israel) are Healed by the Son of David (20:29-34)

The healing of the blind men is recorded in Matthew, Mark, and Luke (compare). It is interesting that in Mark and Luke we only read of one blind man, "blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus", but in Matthew we have two blind men. Also, note that this healing (outide of Jericho) is a totally separate event from the healing of the two blind men in Galilee (Matthew 8:27-31).

 29 And as they went out from Jericho a great crowd followed him. v.29 At this point the Lord has crossed the Jordan river and passed through Jericho (Mark. 10:46). It was in Jericho that He met with Zacchaeus, etc. (Luke). This marks the third and final phase of our Lord's public ministry; in Judea for the six days leading up to His crucifixion. The Lord is on His way to Jerusalem for the last time.
  • In Matt. 4:12 - 18:35 we have the Lord's Galilean ministry. 
  • In Matt. 19:1 - 20:28 we have the Lord's Perean ministry. 
  • In Matt. 20:29 - 27:66 we have the Lord's Judean ministry.
This was the same path taken by Joshua as he led Israel into the promised land. Jericho was the place of a curse (Josh. 6:26), but Jesus was about to be made a curse (Gal. 3:13), and so as Messiah He was able to heal even in this place. "Great crowds followed Him", but many did not have genuine faith. We see them in the next chapter crying "Hosannah", and then just a few days later crying "crucify him, crucify him".

30 And lo, two blind men, sitting by the wayside, having heard that Jesus was passing by, cried out saying, Have mercy on us, Lord, Son of David. v.30 We get a remarkable contrast between these two blind men and the nation of Israel. The nation was spiritually blind. They were about to crucify their own Messiah. But these two men, though physically blind, bear testimony to Jesus as the Son of David. "Son of David" is a title of the Messiah, as the One who would descend from David's royal line, sit on the throne of Jehovah, and bring in Millennial blessing (Isa. 11:1-5; 2 Sam. 7:16). It is interesting that in Mark and Luke we only read of one blind man, "blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus", but in Matthew we have two blind men. The number two forms an adequate testimony to the fact that Christ had the power to heal Israel's spiritual condition of darkness. Their cry "Son of David" shows that they recognize Christ's connection with Israel, and the Nation's need of Him. This testimony condemned the Pharisees. This was great David's greater Son! Opening the eyes of the blind was a miracle reserved for the Messiah alone. The blind man in John 9 had done his research; "Since time was, it has not been heard that any one opened the eyes of one born blind" (John 9:32). But the Messiah had that power! Not only did these men call Jesus by His title "Son of David", but they recognized His qualifications; "Jehovah openeth the eyes of the blind" (Psa. 146:8), and "then the eyes of the blind shall be opened" (Isa. 35:5). This testimony is given just before the Lord's final presentation to Israel.

31 But the crowd rebuked them, that they might be silent. But they cried out the more, saying, Have mercy on us, Lord, Son of David. v.31 The crowd's rebuke did not silence them, but rather caused them to cry out the more! The Lord continued for a short time leaving them in this condition, that the testimony might be sounded out. In a similar way, the faithful remnant will be persecuted by the apostate nation. Far from muzzling this testimony, the gospel of the kingdom will go out with ever more fervency. They were asking for mercy, and they knew the Son of David was the right place to go. There is not one record of any person that fell at the Lord's feet and begged for mercy that did not receive it!

32 And Jesus, having stopped, called them and said, What will ye that I shall do to you? v.32 We are reminded of another time when the "sun stood still" (Josh. 10:13) so Joshua could defeat Israel's enemies. Here we have the Son of David standing still to speak to two blind men. He knew what they wanted, but He asked them anyway; "What will ye that I shall do to you?" The Lord wants to know what is on our hearts, and wants to see our faith rise up and ask Him.

33 They say to him, Lord, that our eyes may be opened. 34 And Jesus, moved with compassion, touched their eyes; and immediately their eyes had sight restored to them, and they followed him. vv.33-34 They knew what their problem was, but they were powerless to do anything about it, except come to the Lord. They had cried out to Christ for mercy, but He was moved with compassion. He touched the very place where the problem lay, and their eyesight was healed. Their eyes were opened, just as Israel's eyes will be opened in a spiritual sense to see Christ as they never have before. "Nevertheless when it [Israel] shall turn to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away" (2 Cor. 3:16). There must have been a real work of faith in these two men, because they did not go away from the Lord, but followed Him.

The Triumphal Entry of into Jerusalem of the Son of David (21:1-11)

 And when they drew near to Jerusalem and came to Bethphage, at the mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, v.1 The mount of Olives lies to the east of Jerusalem. Every learned Jew knew that it was on the mount of Olives that the Messiah would first plant His feet at His advent (Zech. 14:4). The Lord stops there on His way to Jerusalem, because it was needful that His "coming" to Israel be according to prophecy. So He sends two disciples (all things being done in an orderly fashion). Bethphage means "house of un-ripe figs". It is a picture of the nation of Israel at the time of Jesus; no fruit for God… and yet there is still a hint of fruit in the future. At Christ's first coming Israel was not ready to receive the blessing He had in store for them, but one day they will produce fruit for Him!

2 saying to them, Go into the village over against you, and immediately ye will find an ass tied, and a colt with it; loose them and lead them to me. 3 And if any one say anything to you, ye shall say, The Lord has need of them, and straightway he will send them. vv.2-3 One of the themes that comes out of this section it the Divine sovereignty that the Lord had over all circumstances. The ass and colt were waiting, tied in a nearby village. They would find it "immediately", and His control over the minds of all that would speak to them was evident. Under what normal circumstances would the simple reply "the Lord has need of them" convince a man to willing give up his beasts of burden? The answer is that Jesus was the Lord, and He was presiding over every detail including the thoughts of the owner, the donkey, and her colt.

4 But all this came to pass, that that might be fulfilled which was spoken through the prophet, saying, 5 Say to the daughter of Zion, Behold thy King cometh to thee, meek, and mounted upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass. 6 But the disciples, having gone and done as Jesus had ordered them, 7 brought the ass and the colt and put their garments upon them, and he sat on them. 8 But a very great crowd strewed their own garments on the way, and others kept cutting down branches from the trees and strewing them on the way. 9 And the crowds who went before him and who followed cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David; blessed be he who comes in the name of the Lord; hosanna in the highest. 10 And as he entered into Jerusalem, the whole city was moved, saying, Who is this? 11 And the crowds said, This is Jesus the prophet who is from Nazareth of Galilee. 

The Entrance into the Temple (21:12-17)

Cleansing of the Temple (21:12-14)

 12 And Jesus entered into the temple of God, and cast out all that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those that sold the doves. 13 And he says to them, It is written, My house shall be called a house of prayer, but *ye* have made it a den of robbers. 14 And blind and lame came to him in the temple, and he healed them. 

Outrage of the Sanhedrin at the Cries of Hosanna (21:15-17)

15 And when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonders which he wrought, and the children crying in the temple and saying, Hosanna to the Son of David, they were indignant, 16 and said to him, Hearest thou what these say? And Jesus says to them, Yea; have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise? 17 And leaving them he went forth out of the city to Bethany, and there he passed the night. 

The Withering Fig Tree (21:18-22)

Cursing of the Fig Tree - The Judgment of the Nation (21:18-19)

 18 But early in the morning, as he came back into the city, he hungered. 19 And seeing one fig-tree in the way, he came to it and found on it nothing but leaves only. And he says to it, Let there be never more fruit of thee for ever. And the fig-tree was immediately dried up. 

Teaching on the Power of Prayer in Faith (21:20-22)

20 And when the disciples saw it, they wondered, saying, How immediately is the fig-tree dried up! 21 And Jesus answering said to them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and do not doubt, not only shall ye do what is done to the fig-tree, but even if ye should say to this mountain, Be thou taken away and be thou cast into the sea, it shall come to pass. 22 And all things whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.