Luke 20: Authority of Jesus

What reasons did religious leaders have to question Jesus’ authority?

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Luke 20:1–2 One day in the Temple, as Jesus was teaching and proclaiming the good news to the people, the chief priests, Jewish leaders, and teachers of the Law said, “What right do you have to do these things? Who gave you the authority?”
King James
Luke 20:1–2 And it came to pass, that on one of those days, as he taught the people in the temple, and preached the gospel, the chief priests and the scribes came upon him with the elders, and spake unto him, saying, Tell us, by what authority doest thou these things? or who is he that gave thee this authority?

What had religious leaders not accepted in John’s preaching? Why had people regarded John as a prophet, but the religious leaders did not?

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Luke 20:3–7 “First, let me ask you a question. Tell me, from where did John receive his authority to baptize? Was it from God or men?”
They discussed the question among themselves. “If we say, ‘From God,’ he will ask why we did not believe him. But if we say, ‘From men,’ the people will stone us, because they all regard John as a prophet.” So they said to Jesus, “We don’t know.”
King James
Luke 20:3–7 And he answered and said unto them, I will also ask you one thing; and answer me: The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say, Why then believed ye him not? But and if we say, Of men; all the people will stone us: for they be persuaded that John was a prophet. And they answered, that they could not tell whence it was.

Why didn’t Jesus reveal his authority?

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Luke 20:8 “Then I won’t tell you by what authority I do these things.”
King James
Luke 20:8 And Jesus said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.

How would Jesus have explained his vineyard story to his disciples?

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Luke 20:9–16 Jesus used this illustration as he spoke to the people. “A landowner planted a vineyard, left it under the care of sharecroppers, and went to another country for a long time. At harvest season, he sent a servant to collect his share from the vineyard, but the sharecroppers grabbed and beat him, sending him away with nothing. So the landowner sent another servant. They also beat him and ran him off with nothing but their insults. When a third servant was sent, they wounded him and threw him out. The owner of the vineyard said, ‘What can I do? I know. I will send my only son. Surely they will respect him.’ When the sharecroppers saw him coming, they said to themselves, ‘He is the heir. If we kill him, we can have his inheritance.’ So they dragged him out of the vineyard and killed him. What do you think the landowner will do to those sharecroppers? He will destroy those men and find others who will give him his share of the harvest.”
After hearing this, the people listening to Jesus said, “This must never happen.”
King James
Luke 20:9–16 Then began he to speak to the people this parable; A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time. And at the season he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard: but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty. And again he sent another servant: and they beat him also, and entreated him shamefully, and sent him away empty. And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out. Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him. But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours. So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him. What therefore shall the lord of the vineyard do unto them? He shall come and destroy these husbandmen, and shall give the vineyard to others. And when they heard it, they said, God forbid.

What did the chief priests and teachers of the Law think Jesus was saying about them?

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Luke 20:17–19 Looking straight at them, Jesus said, “Haven’t you read the scripture? The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. Those who fall on this stone will be broken, but those on whom this stone falls will be crushed.”
The chief priests and teachers of the Law realized that he was talking about them, so they wanted to arrest him.
King James
Luke 20:17–19 And he beheld them, and said, What is this then that is written, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner? Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. And the chief priests and the scribes the same hour sought to lay hands on him; and they feared the people: for they perceived that he had spoken this parable against them.

Why did religious leaders need the help of Roman authorities?

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Luke 20:20 The Jewish leaders kept watching Jesus and sent spies who pretended to be interested in his teaching. They wanted to trap Jesus into saying something they could use against him, so they could arrest and deliver him to the Roman authorities.
King James
Luke 20:20 And they watched him, and sent forth spies, which should feign themselves just men, that they might take hold of his words, that so they might deliver him unto the power and authority of the governor.

Why did the spies’ question about taxes seem to be an excellent way to trap Jesus?

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Luke 20:21–26 “Teacher,” the spies said, “we know you are sincere and completely honest. You teach the truth about God’s ways without concern for what people think. Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar?”
Jesus recognized their scheming. “Why are you testing me? “Show me a coin used to pay the tax. Whose image and inscription does it have?”
“Caesar’s,” they said.
“Then pay to Caesar what belongs to him, and give God all that is God’s.”
His reply gave them nothing to use in accusation before the people. Amazed at his answer, they said no more.
King James
Luke 20:21–26 And they asked him, saying, Master, we know that thou sayest and teachest rightly, neither acceptest thou the person of any, but teachest the way of God truly: Is it lawful for us to give tribute unto Caesar, or no? But he perceived their craftiness, and said unto them, Why tempt ye me? Shew me a penny. Whose image and superscription hath it? They answered and said, Caesar’s. And he said unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar’s, and unto God the things which be God’s. And they could not take hold of his words before the people: and they marvelled at his answer, and held their peace.

Why did Sadducees expect to accomplish when they confronted Jesus about the resurrection?

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Luke 20:27–33 Some Sadducees, who believed there was no resurrection, came to question Jesus. “Teacher, Moses said, If a brother dies with no children, the widow must not marry someone outside the family. The surviving brother should marry her and have children for him. Once, there were seven brothers and the oldest brother married and died without children. After marrying the widow, the second brother had no children when he died. The third brother did the same. This continued until the barren wife had married all seven brothers. Finally, the woman died, still childless. On the day when the dead rise to life, whose wife will this woman be? All seven were married to her.”
King James
Luke 20:27–33 Then came to him certain of the Sadducees, which deny that there is any resurrection; and they asked him, saying, Master, Moses wrote unto us, If any man’s brother die, having a wife, and he die without children, that his brother should take his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother. There were therefore seven brethren: and the first took a wife, and died without children. And the second took her to wife, and he died childless. And the third took her; and in like manner the seven also: and they left no children, and died. Last of all the woman died also. Therefore in the resurrection whose wife of them is she? for seven had her to wife.

How will relationships in Heaven differ from what exists on Earth?

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Luke 20:34–36 Jesus said, “People in this world get married, but those worthy of resurrection enter another world, where marriage does not exist. They cannot die, but are like the angels. They will be God’s children because they have been raised to life.”
King James
Luke 20:34–36 And Jesus answering said unto them, The children of this world marry, and are given in marriage: But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage: Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection.

How effective was Jesus’ argument about God speaking to Moses from the burning bush?

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Luke 20:37–40 “Now, on the issue of rising from the dead, consider what God said to Moses from the burning bush: I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. He is a God of the living, not of the dead. To him, we are all alive.”
Some teachers of the Law said, “Teacher, that is a very good answer.”
After that, no one wanted to question him further.
King James
Luke 20:37–40 Now that the dead are raised, even Moses shewed at the bush, when he calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for all live unto him. Then certain of the scribes answering said, Master, thou hast well said. And after that they durst not ask him any question at all.

What did the religious scholars think of Jesus question about David calling the Messiah his Lord? How would Jesus have answered that question for his disciples?

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Luke 20:41–44 Then Jesus said to the religious scholars, “How can the teachers of the Law say the Messiah is David’s son? David himself said in the Psalms, God said unto my Lord, ‘Sit here at my right hand 43 until I have put all your enemies beneath your feet.’ If David called him Lord, how can he be his son?”
King James
Luke 20:41–44 And he said unto them, How say they that Christ is David’s son? And David himself saith in the book of Psalms, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool. David therefore calleth him Lord, how is he then his son?

How did teachers of the Law take advantage of widows?

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Luke 20:45–47 With everyone listening, Jesus said to his followers, “Watch out for the teachers of the Law who wear luxurious robes and love to be recognized in the marketplace. At feasts and in the synagogues, they love the seats of honor. Because they take advantage of widows while making long prayers to appear righteous, they will be punished most severely.”
King James
Luke 20:45–47 Then in the audience of all the people he said unto his disciples, Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts; which devour widows’ houses, and for a shew make long prayers: the same shall receive greater damnation.