The Book of Matthew-Chapter 12

(1) At that time Yeshua went on the Sabbath (the Greek in Luke 6.1 says that this was the “second chief Sabbath” which is the first Sabbath after the 2nd day of Passover (Nisan 15). So, it is the “second chief Sabbath” when the barley can be eaten. It was the second Sabbath of seven leading to Shavuot) through the grain fields and his talmidim became hungry (low on provisions) and began to pick the heads of grain to eat (the act itself was permitted in Deut 23.25, but the issue was the Sabbath). (2) But when the Pharisees saw it they said to him, “Behold, your talmidim do what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath (no servile work or reaping). (3) But he said to them, “Have you not read what David did, when he became hungry, he and his companions; (4) how he entered the house of God, and they ate the consecrated bread, which was not lawful for him to eat, nor for those with him, but for the priests alone? (5) Or have you not read in the Law (Torah), that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple break the Sabbath and are innocent (there are several points Yeshua is making here. The eating of the priests bread in 1 Sam 21 was also on the Sabbath, they were good men in need and the High Priest gave them permission after asking the Lord -1 Sam 22.10-just like this present situation. He is also making the point that if the needs of the temple outweigh the Sabbath, then do the the needs of man? The answer is yes-Mark 2.27)? (6) But I say to you that something greater than the temple is here (within the Torah there is a concept called the “order of priority” and he is saying here that he is the temple of God while he was on earth-John 2.19-21. If the Pharisees had known he was the Messiah, then they would not have a reason to criticize those who did any work serving the one who is greater than the temple). (7) But if you had known what this means (what he told them to go and learn in Matt 9.13), ‘I desire compassion, and not a sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the innocent. (8) For the Son of Man (Bar Enosh, a messianic title from Dan 7.13) is Lord of the Sabbath (he instituted it and he determines halachah, the way to walk).” (9) And departing from there he went into their synagogue (on another Sabbath-Luke 6.6). (10) And behold, there was a man with a withered hand. And they questioned him, saying, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath.” – in order that they might accuse him. (11) And he said to them, “What man shall there be among you who shall have one sheep, and if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will he not take hold of it, and lift it out (again, there is an order of priority in the Torah)? (12) of how much more (Hillel rule #1) value then is a man than a sheep! So then, it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.” (13) Then he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand!” And he stretched it out, and it was restored to normal like the other. (14) But the Pharisees went out, and counseled together against him, as to how they might destroy him (but they can consult how to kill a man on the Sabbath, and see no problem). (15) But Yeshua, aware of this, withdrew from there. And many followed him (they were not afraid), and he healed them all. (16) and warned them not to make him known (he had work to do and didn’t want to be hindered by others claiming he was there to overthrow Rome, which was the expectation of many of what the Messiah would do, and start some revolution), (17) in order that what was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, might be fulfilled (given meaning, confirmed), saying, (18) “Behold, my servant whom I have chosen; my beloved in whom my soul is well-pleased; I will put my Spirit upon him, and he shall proclaim justice to the Gentiles. (19) He will not quarrel, nor cry out; nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets (he will not seek worldly honor). (20) A battered reed he will not break off, and a smoldering wick he will not put out, until he pleads justice to victory (as the Lion of Judah and the High Priest anointed for war). (21) And in his name the Gentiles will hope.” (22) Then there was brought to him a demon-possessed man who was blind and dumb, and he healed him, so that the dumb man spoke and saw. (23) And all the multitudes were amazed, and began to say, “This man cannot be the son of David can he (the Messiah)?” (24) But when the Pharisees heard it they said, “This man casts out demons only by Beelzebul, the ruler of demons (a Philistine deity).” (25) And knowing their thoughts (all the people there), he said to them,” Any kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and any city or house divided against itself cannot stand. (26) And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself, how then shall his kingdom stand? (27) And if I by Beelzebul cast out demons, by whom do your sons (their talmidim) cast them out? Consequently, they shall be your judges (when they rise up against you someday with their perverted ways of seeing things). (28) But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God , then the kingdom of God has come upon you (because it was being offered at that time). (29) Or how can anyone enter the strong man’s house and carry off his property, unless he first binds the strong man? And then he will plunder his house. (30 He who is not with me is against me; and he who does not gather with me scatters. (31) Therefore I say to you, any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven then, but blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven (because it shows a terminal determination to shut their eyes to all evidence that comes before salvation). (32) And whoever shall speak a word against the Son of Man (Bar Enosh, a messianic title from Dan 7.13), it shall be forgiven him; but whoever shall speak against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, either in this age (the Olam ha Zeh) or in the age to come (the Olam Haba). (33) Either make the tree good , and its fruit (teachings); or make the tree rotten, and its fruit rotten (bad teachings); for the tree is known by its fruits (what teachings it puts forth). (34) You brood of vipers (they kill with their mouths), how can you, being evil, speak what is good (have accurate, true teachings)? For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. (35) The good man (the good tree) out of his good treasure (in his heart, what he has learned of the truth) brings forth what is good (good teaching) and the evil man out of his evil treasure (in his heart, inaccurate teachings he has learned) brings forth what is evil (inaccurate teachings). (36) And I say to you, that every careless word (unprofitable talk, of no use) that men shall speak they shall render account for it in the day of judgment (yom ha din). (37) For by your words you shall be justified, and by your words you shall be condemned (not only works and actions will be judged by the Lord, but our words also. They will evidences for you or against you, like in any court room). (38) Then some of the Pharisees answered him, saying, “Teacher, we want to see a sign from you.” (39) But he answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign; and yet no sign shall be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet; (40) for just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the sea monster, so shall the Son of Man (Bar Enosh, a messianic title from Dan 7.13) be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth (his burial). (41) The men of Nineveh shall stand up with this generation at the judgment, and shall condemn it because they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and behold, something greater than Jonah (or the traditions of the fathers) is here (meaning himself, the Messiah). (42) The Queen of the South shall rise up with this generation at the judgment and shall condemn it, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and behold, something greater than Solomon (or the traditions of the fathers) is here (both instances concern Gentiles who responded to the Lord and his word. This point did not go unnoticed). (43) Now when the unclean spirit goes out of a man (in this case the Pharisees who have been deceived by Satan in some of their teachings, traditions and outward appearances of righteousness), it passes through waterless places (the wilderness, the desert, was seen as the domain of Satan in Hebrew thought), seeking rest (the only rest it finds is by disturbing mankind) and does not find it. (44) Then it says, ‘I will return to my house (Israel, in particular the Pharisees and false teachers of that generation) from which I came ,’ and when it comes, it finds it unoccupied (without the Lord and true knowledge of his teachings), swept (with outward reformation), and put in order (an outward appearance of rites and ceremonies, an appearance of good). (45) Then it goes, and takes along with it seven (the number of completion) other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there; and the last state of that man becomes worse than the first. That is the way it will also be with this generation (they had the greatest teacher forcing the enemy out. By rejecting the king, they rejected the kingdom, and it would as if he never came at all, only worse and this was seen by 70 AD and the destruction of the nation and temple). (46) While he was yet speaking to the multitudes, behold, his mother and his brothers (Yeshua had at least four brothers and two sisters-Matt 13.55-56) were standing outside, seeking to speak to him (they thought he had “lost his senses” and did not believe in him-Mark 3.21; John 7.5). (47) And someone said to him, “Behold, your mother and your brothers are standing outside seeking to speak with you.” (48) But he answered the one who was telling him and said, “Who is my mother and who are my brothers?” (49) And stretching out his hand toward his talmidim, he said, “Behold, my mother and my brothers! (50) For whoever shall do the will of my Father (which is his Torah) who is in heaven, he is my brother and my sister and mother.”

Posted in Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Understanding the New Testament, Verse-by-Verse Bible Studies

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