Sunday, June 4th, 2023
Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament Schaff's NT Commentary
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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Matthew 22". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://studylight.org/
commentaries/ eng/ scn/ matthew-22.html. 1879-90.
Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Matthew 22". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://studylight.org/
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Matthew 22:1. Answered. See above.
Again in parables; not necessarily, in a number of parables, but in parabolic discourse.
Mark states (Matthew 12:12) that, after the parable of the wicked husbandmen the rulers ‘left Him and went their way; ‘hence this parable (peculiar to Matthew) was not spoken directly to the rulers. Matthew 22:1, however, indicates that it was aimed at their thoughts and designs. The parable in Luke 14:15-24 (‘the great supper’) resembles this one which is properly called, ‘the marriage of the king’s son,’ but with essential differences. The former was delivered in Perea, at the house of a Pharisee, and was occasioned by an exclamation of one who sat at meat with Him. The one was a supper, given by a man of wealth; this a marriage feast given by a king. In the former case the infinite goodness and grace of the Lord is brought out, here judgment is made prominent. The two-fold invitation: 1 . Preparatory (through the centuries of Jewish history). 2 . Peremptory, at the time of the wedding (when the New Dispensation was ushered in). The two-fold rejection: 1 . by indifference (Matthew 22:5), 2 . by persecution (Matthew 22:6). The two-fold punishment: 1 . on the persons; 2 . on the place of the persecutors. The invitation to the Gentiles: 1 . without any preliminary (Matthew 22:9); 2 . universal (Matthew 22:10). The two-fold sifting: 1 . through the invitation; 2 . at the feast itself (Matthew 22:11-14). The excuses of indifference (Matthew 22:5), the speechlessness of self-righteous profession. The wedding feast implies the offer of the wedding garment.
Matthew 22:2. A man that was a king. Evidently God: the householder of the former parable.
A marriage feast for his son. The word includes any great feast, but here a marriage feast is meant, since the word ‘son’ must not be thrown into the background. It was Christ’s marriage, i.e., with His covenant people, according to the imager of the Old Testament (Isaiah 54:5; Ezekiel 16:4; Hosea 2:19-20; Song of Solomon throughout; comp. Psalms 45:0) See, also, in the New Testament (Ephesians 5:25; Revelation 21:9;) where the Church is the Bride, and this marriage feast is the union of Christ and His Church in glory. The union of the Divine and human natures of Christ underlies the other union, but is not prominent here. Believers, as individuals, are guests, the Church as an ideal whole is the Bride.
Matthew 22:3. His servants. In this prophetic parable, not the prophets but the first messengers of the gospel.
To call them that were bidden. The Oriental custom was to invite twice: first to the feast generally (‘bidden’), then to the beginning of the feast itself (‘call’). Those ‘bidden’ were the Jews. The second invitation was a summons to expected guests, rather than an invitation. The first servants, whose message was rejected, were John the Baptist, Christ, and His disciples up to this time.
Matthew 22:4. Other servants, with a plainer message, probably the Apostles and Evangelists, as they proclaimed the full gospel to the Jews from the day of Pentecost.
I have made ready my dinner (not ‘supper,’ Luke 14:16). The series of wedding feasts began with a dinner, preceding the actual marriage. It refers to the beginning of privileges, which culminate in ‘the marriage supper of the Lamb.’ Although the guests were the subjects of the King, whom He might constrain, He invites them even with urgency, to become guests and friends.
My oxen and my fatlings. Probably a figurative allusion to the slaying of the sacrifice, as meat for the feast. This thought of Christ as slain is necessarily included, when a distinctly evangelical sense is put upon the phrase: all things are ready. The connection of the two clauses suggests a meaning which may now be profitably used in inviting to the Lord’s Supper.
Matthew 22:5. But they made light of it. All had a guilty contempt for the invitation which was manifested however in two distinct forms: Some went away, in indifferent worldliness; others became persecutors of the messengers (Matthew 22:6). Many refer ‘made light of it’ to the indifferent class alone, but the other view is more grammatical. All modes of rejecting the gospel, even persecution, are really making light of it
One to his own farm. ‘His own,’ in a selfish spirit.
His merchandise. Worldliness is here represented by the two leading occupations of men. The application is, primarily, to the irreligious and careless Jewish people; then to all such in any age.
Matthew 22:6. But the rest. Representing the fanatical rulers of the Jews, the Pharisees.
Treated them shamefully and slew them. Literally fulfilled, in case of the Apostles and Evangelists. Indifference often passes into hostility, as the more consistent attitude.
Matthew 22:7. He sent his armies. The Roman armies which destroyed Jerusalem were the unconscious instruments of God’s (the king’s) wrath. Comp. Isaiah 10:5; Isaiah 13:5; Jeremiah 25:9; Joel 2:25.
Destroyed these murderers. Both the indifferent and hostile, alike guilty.
Burned their city. Jerusalem is meant, no longer His, but ‘their city.’ The destruction precedes the invitation to the Gentiles (Matthew 22:8-10). The final rejection of the Jews and the substitution of the Gentiles took place at the destruction of Jerusalem, although the gospel had been proclaimed to the Gentiles for forty years before.
Matthew 22:8. Not worthy. Compare Paul’s language to the Jews at Antioch in Pisidia (Acts 13:46): ‘judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life.’
Matthew 22:9. The partings of the highways. Places where streets meet, public squares, etc., in the king’s city, God’s world, not Jerusalem. Some refer it to the outlets of country-roads, of highways, in the English sense, applying it to the going out into the distant world to invite the Gentiles. In Luke 14:23, where ‘hedges’ is added, the latter meaning is evident.
Matthew 22:10. And those servants. Including all gospel messengers ever since.
Both bad and good. All kinds of people, without regard to their apparent moral character. The acceptance of the invitation was (and is) the great concern of the king’s servants.
And the wedding was filled with guests. The Jews, by their rejection of the gospel, did not frustrate the grace of God. Besides the remarkable fulfilment in the early Christian centuries, there is a reference to the Church as gathered ever since from all parts of the world, of ‘bad and good,’ and containing some without ‘a wedding garment.’
Matthew 22:11. To look upon the guests. The Pharisees and all legalists think the opening of the doors leads to unrighteousness, there follows therefore a hint of the gospel method of righteousness. The coming in judgment (comp. Zephaniah 1:7-8) is represented as taking place at the feast, and hence not only without terror but an occasion of joy, for the properly clothed guests. God, not man, is to finally discriminate between the guests. Had not on a wedding garment. Each guest should and could have one. The character of the guests (Matthew 22:10) indicates that the king himself provided the wedding garments. The lesson is not that each guest should take pains to provide himself with the proper habit. The gift of the wedding garment accords far better with the Scripture doctrines of grace. On the other view poverty would have been a valid excuse, yet the man was ‘speechless.’ ‘The wedding garment’ is not faith; that is the putting on of the garment; it is ‘righteousness,’ given of God in Christ; to be distinguished but not divided, as imputed and in-wrought. Other views: ( 1 .) Charity or holiness; this leads to legalism by throwing the gospel basis of holiness into the background. ( 2 .) Christ Himself; a less exact statement of our interpretation. ( 3 .) Baptism; this is not justified by the parable nor by the general tenor of Scripture.
Matthew 22:12. Friend. The word used in chap. Matthew 20:13, and addressed to Judas (chap. Matthew 26:50). It means ‘companion,’ without implying friendship.
How camest thou! It was a bold intrusion, a despising of the king, to appear in his own ordinary dress. This points to the pride of self-righteousness. Some think it indicates lawlessness or hypocrisy.
He was speechless. There can be no excuse for failure to have on the wedding garment, to be righteous through and in Christ Jesus.
Matthew 22:13. The attendants. A different word from that used before, referring not to the ‘servants’ who invited, nor to the guests, but probably to angels, as ministers of judgment.
Bind him hand and foot. For secure transfer to his place of punishment. The best authorities omit, ‘and take him away.’
Outer darkness. See chap Matthew 8:12. There the fate of ‘the children of the kingdom ‘is referred to; here of a Gentile, who entered in, despising the King; their punishment is the same; their sin was the same, the sin of pride.
Matthew 22:14. For many are called. A proverbial expression; see chap. Matthew 20:16. Here the application is more general. The ‘called’ are all those invited, both Jews and Gentiles.
But few chosen. The general sense is: Few pass safely through the two stages of sifting. The one man in the parable therefore stands for a large class. It is implied that the guests who stand the test are ‘chosen’ by God.
Matthew 22:15. Then went the Pharisees. The main element, no doubt, in the deputation which had assailed Him.
Ensnare him in speech. This mode of attack was adopted in view of the complete failure of the last attempt, and was the most artful of all.
Matthew 22:15-22. THE ATTACK OF THE YOUNG PHARISEES AND THE HERODIANS, attempting to involve Him in political difficulty.
The defeated and embittered Pharisees send the Herodians to ensnare our Lord with a political question. The reply sends them away in astonishment (Matthew 22:15-21). The Sadducees now appear with a flippant question, probably intended to provoke a new conflict with the Pharisees. The answer produces new astonishment (Matthew 22:23-33). On the final question of the Pharisees, see note on Matthew 22:34-35. Our Lord now puts a question, which the Pharisees cannot answer, and thus all His enemies are silenced. The three assaults, and the final victory. 1 . The assault of cunning, a political dilemma. 2 . The assault of the scoffers. 3 . The theological assault. The victory won on the great theological battleground, the doctrine of the Person of Christ.
Matthew 22:16. Their disciples with the Herodians. A political party supporting the Roman rule. These two classes were antagonistic, yet they united in opposition to Christ. Luke (Luke 20:20) as more detailed in his account, calling the deputation ‘spies’ of the rulers. This part was probably assigned to ‘their disciples,’ as young and unknown persons, who were accompanied by the Herodians. The dispute about tribute, however natural between these two classes, was made for the occasion.
Master, we know, etc. This was true, but not truth fully spoken. ‘The devil never lies so foully as when he speaks the truth.’
Teachest the way of God, i.e., the true doctrine, in truth. This was certainly hypocritical, for both the Pharisees and Herod condemned this Teacher of the truth.
And carest not for any one. His independence and sincerity had just been demonstrated, but their acknowledgment of these peculiarities was to tempt Him: as if one party would say, You do not care for the Roman authorities; the other, You do not care for the authority of the Pharisees and Jewish rulers.
Thou regardest not the person of men. Comp. Leviticus 19:15; Jude 1:16; Deu 16:19 ; 2 Samuel 14:14; Acts 10:34; James 2:1; James 2:3; James 2:9; 1 Peter 1:17.
Matthew 22:17. Is it lawful. According to Jewish law.
Tribute, the poll-tax which had been levied since Judea became a province of Rome. Cesar, the Roman Emperor, at that time. Tiberius. To say Yes, would alienate the people, who hated the Roman yoke; to say No, would have given good ground for accusing Him to the Roman authorities. Themselves regarding ‘the person of men,’ the Pharisees did not avow their own belief, that it was not lawful. Their motive now was not their usual hostility to Rome, but hatred of Christ. They afterwards actually accused Him of forbidding to pay tribute (Luke 23:2), and the chief priests, despite their Pharisaism, from the same hatred of Him, cried out: ‘We have no king but Cesar’ (John 19:15).
Matthew 22:18. Their wickedness. As just explained.
Hypocrites. They were such, both in their flattering address (Matthew 22:16) and in their cunning question (Matthew 22:17). Men may rightly carry their religious convictions into politics, and religious questions may become political ones; but when this is the case hypocrisy flourishes.
Matthew 22:19. The tribute money. The Roman coin in which the poll-tax was paid. Mark and Luke intimate that He called for a penny, i.e. , a Roman denarius. See chap. Matthew 20:2.
Matthew 22:20. Whose is this image. The likeness of the ruler at the date of the coin. Superscription. The name, etc., on the coin.
Matthew 22:21. Cesar’s. Imperial money was current among them. ‘Wherever any king’s money is current, there that king is lord;’ is reported as a Rabbinical saying. The standard currency is an indication or symbol of the civil authority; the right to coin has usually implied the right to exact tribute.
Render therefore unto Cesar, etc. Render to ‘the powers that be,’ the service due them. Comp. Romans 13:1-7. Obedience to this precept would have spared Jerusalem, but the subtlest snare they devised for our Lord became their own destruction.
Unto God the things that are God’s. Religious duties are to be rendered to God. Possibly a hint that in denying Him, they denied the honor due to God, and also a reference to man as bearing the image of God, so that political and religious duties are distinguished, but not divided. The Jews themselves were under tribute to Cesar, because they had not rendered God His dues. Real religion makes men better citizens, since it enjoins a religious fulfilment of political obligations. The few exceptional cases that arise are to be decided by the principle of Acts 5:29. Under a free government, this religious fulfilment of political duties is essential to preserve the State against anarchy. This answer settles in principle, though not in detail, the relations of Church and State. Both are of Divine origin and authority: the one for the temporal, the other for the eternal welfare of men. They ought to be kept distinct and independent in their respective spheres, without mixture and confusion, and yet without antagonism, but rather in friendly relation in view of their common origin in God, and their common end and completion in ‘the kingdom of glory’ where God shall be all in all.
Matthew 22:22. They marvelled. Probably both confounded and impressed.
Matthew 22:23-33. THE ASSAULT OF THE SADDUCEES.
Matthew 22:23. Sadducees. See note on chap. Matthew 3:5.
Saying, the correct reading points to what was said at that time.
There is no resurrection. Comp. Acts 23:8, where their views are shown to include a denial of the immortality of the soul as well as of the resurrection of the body. They correspond to the Skeptics and Epicureans among the Greek philosophers.
And they asked him. A scoffing question, in ridicule of the doctrine and of Christ Himself. This sneering spirit is prominent in Sadducees of every age. Afterwards they became earnest enough. It is possible they hoped for an answer that might show sympathy with them. Errorists often think that opposition to their opponents is agreement with them. But truth must always oppose two contrary errors. In this case first the Pharisees, then their antagonists the Sadducees.
Matthew 22:24. Moses said. Deuteronomy 25:5, freely quoted; comp. the regulations added in that chapter. Such a marriage was called a Levirate marriage. The object was to preserve families, a matter of great importance in the Jewish economy. See chap. 1 .
Seed to his brother. The first-born son would be registered as the son of the dead brother.
Matthew 22:25. There were with us. Probably a purely fictitious case, notwithstanding this statement.
Matthew 22:26. Unto the seventh, lit., ‘the seven.’
Matthew 22:28. In the resurrection, i.e. , in the state after the resurrection.
Whose wife shall she be of the seven? The point of the entangling question is now evident. They had quoted the law of Moses and then given an example of obedience to it, to prove the absurdity of the doctrine of the resurrection. Our Lord at once rebukes and denies their false assumption, in regard to human relations in the future state.
Matthew 22:29. Ye do err. How, is immediately added.
Not knowing the Scriptures. ‘In that ye do not understand the Scriptures,’ i.e., the Old Testament, which they professed to hold free from tradition. That Scripture plainly implies the resurrection.
N or the power of God. His power to raise the dead. Modern Sadducism usually knows the meaning of the Scriptures, but denies ‘the power of God,’ in this as in many other things.
Matthew 22:30. Neither marry, spoken of the man; nor are given in marriage, of the woman, since the father gave away the bride in marriage. This relation is not to be reestablished in the state after the resurrection, because those raised up are as angels in heaven. Comp. especially the fuller answer in Luke 20:35-36. There the immortality is brought out; as there is no death there, there will be no birth there. Personal intercourse doubtless remains, but the Jews looked at marriage more in its physical relations. Equality with angels in mode of existence is affirmed, but the redeemed are distinguished from them. This answer opposes another error of the Sadducees, a denial of the existence of angels.
Matthew 22:31. But touching the resurrection of the dead. Proof that the doctrine was implied in the writings of Moses. Luke 20:37 is against the view that our Lord only makes an authoritative statement without really basing His proof on the passage quoted.
Spoken unto you by God. Christ assumes the truth of the book of Exodus. The Sadducees are said to have doubted the authority of the prophetical books. The proof is drawn from the Pentateuch, which they acknowledged.
Matthew 22:32. I am the God of Abraham, etc. Exodus 3:6. Spoken to Moses from the burning bush. The name given by Jehovah to Himself, setting forth His self-existence and eternity (Exodus 3:14-15), supports the doctrine of our immortality, body and soul. God continues (‘I am,’ not ‘I was’) in covenant relation to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (‘the God of Abraham,’ etc.). As these patriarchs had in their bodies the sign of this covenant, the body is included in whatever promise is involved.
God is not the God of the dead, but of the living. This saying added by our Lord may be thus expanded: This personal, living God is the God of living persons, He calls Himself the continuing covenant God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, therefore the statement of Moses involves the truth, that after their death Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are still living. This is Christ’s authoritative exposition of the previous revelation. The Bible treats man as a unit, and while it implies the separation of body and soul after death until the resurrection, plainly intimates that the blessedness of the future state will be incomplete until body and soul are reunited (comp. especially Romans 8:11; Romans 8:23). Only then will we be like Christ, who has a glorified body (Philippians 3:21, etc.). Our Lord’s answer (comp. Luke 20:32: ‘for all live to Him’) may be used as an argument against the unconscious state of the soul between death and the resurrection.
Matthew 22:33. The multitudes. The question was put publicly. The Sadducees hoped for an evil effect on the multitudes, but they were astonished, as they might well be, at his teaching, which confounded them, maintaining the authority of the law, yet shedding new light upon it.
Matthew 22:34. But the Pharisees hearing. Even their gratification at the defeat of their usual opponents, the Sadducees (Mark 12:28; Luke 20:0, did not diminish their enmity. Hence a renewal of the assault.
Matthew 22:34-40. THE LAST QUESTION OF THE PHARISEES.
Matthew 22:35. Then one of them, a lawyer, an expounder of the law, ‘one of the scribes’ (Mark). Luke 10:25-37 refers to another though similar occurrence.
Tempting him. The statements of Mark (Mark 12:28) and Luke (Luke 20:39), do not indicate any specially hostile purpose on the part of this ‘lawyer.’ Such a purpose seems to be out of keeping with the hearty response of the ‘scribe’ and our Lord’s commendatory words to him (Mark 12:32-44). We infer that this man, an intelligent Pharisee, a student of the law, was pleased with our Lord’s previous interpretation. But though personally better than his party, he was, perhaps unconsciously, their tool, in putting the tempting question. The great difficulty is, in discovering how it could be a ‘tempting’ question. Explanations: ( 1 .) Matthew classes it with the attacks, because it was put at that time, not because it was a temptation. This is contrary both to the Evangelist’s words, and to his habits as a writer. ( 2 .) The lawyer only desired, by this test, to have his favorable impressions confirmed. But the previous answer had fully sustained the law. ( 3 .) The temptation lay in the distinction of the great and small commandments (see Matthew 22:36). As this was a disputed point, any answer would place our Lord in opposition to some party. This makes the attack very weak. ( 4 .) The question was designed to draw forth in response, the first commandment: ‘Thou shalt have no other Gods before me,’ so that this might be used against His claim to be the Son of God. This design was defeated by His adding the second table of the law (Matthew 22:39) as like the first: ‘As the second commandment is subordinate to the first, and yet like unto it, so the Son of man is subordinate to the Father, and yet like unto Him’ (Lange). This explanation is most satisfactory. The answer thus prepares the way for His triumphant counter-question (Matthew 22:42-45). The seemingly innocent question becomes the greatest temptation. They expected by His answer, either to disprove His Messiahship, or to find in His own words a basis for the charge of blasphemy in making Himself the Son of God. This charge they did bring forward in the council (chap. Matthew 26:63-66), and before Pilate (John 19:7), and it was probably in their thoughts when they put this question a few days before.
Matthew 22:36. What commandment is great in the law? i.e., the Mosaic law. Not merely greater than the rest, but ‘great,’ as including the rest. Comp. Matthew 22:38; Matthew 22:40. If there was a reference to the disputes of the Rabbins about great and small commandments, the meaning would be: ‘What kind of a commandment is great in the law?’ but this sense, though literally correct, does not suit the answer so well.
Matthew 22:37. Thou shalt love the Lord thy God, etc. Quoted from the Septuagint version of Deuteronomy 6:5.
With all thy heart, literally, ‘in all thy heart.’ The whole is a demand for supreme affection. If we distinguish between the phrases, the first refers to ‘the whole energy of the reason and the intellect;’ soul, ‘the whole energy of sentiment and passion;’ mind, ‘the whole energy of thought and will in its manifestation.’ To this Mark adds: ‘with all thy strength,’ which refers more especially to the manifestations of thought and will.
Matthew 22:38. This is the great and first Commandment. ‘Great’ as embracing all the others; first’ as preceding the other table in the Decalogue. Our Lord here declares the unity of the first table of the law, its absolute greatness. Hence no part of this table (the first five commandments) can be regarded as abrogated. This ‘unqualified surrender of our whole being to God’ is to be the aim of our strivings after holiness. God’s essential perfections and His manifested grace alike demand this.
Matthew 22:39. And a second like unto it is this. Our Lord thus exalts the second table to an equality with the first God’s moral law has unity: though one table is ‘great and first,’ the ‘second’ is ‘like unto it’ Pharisaism puts the second in a lower place, thinking that seeming service of God can atone for want of charity to men. But supreme love to God is to manifest itself in love to men. Alike binding, the two are correspondent, not contradictory. The mistake of humanitarianism is making the ‘second’ ‘the great and first’ commandment.
Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. From Leviticus 19:18. ‘Man ought to love his neighbor, 1 . not as he does love himself, but as he ought to love himself; 2 . not in the same degree, but after the same manner, i.e., freely and readily, sincerely and unfeignedly, tenderly and compassionately, constantly and perseveringly’ (W. Burkitt). Cases arise where man ought to love his neighbor more than his life, physical life, and has done so, sacrificing it for his fellows, his country, and the church, in imitation of the example of Christ and the martyrs.
Matthew 22:40. Doth hang. Like a door on its hinges. The ‘cardinal precepts have a common principle.
The whole law, i.e., all the Mosaic economy, and the prophets, the subsequent revelations of God. Between the law, which they used as a snare, and the prophets, who foretold of Christ, there was no contradiction. On the response of the scribe, see Mark 12:32-34.
Matthew 22:41. Now while the Pharisees were gathered together. Probably as they gathered after the last attack.
Jesus asked them. Fuller and more exact than Mark and Luke, who seem to imply that the question was put concerning the scribes. This probably took place while His audience was changing: the Pharisees were about to withdraw, no longer daring to question Him; and ‘the multitude’ (Mark 12:37) beginning to take the vacated places. Comp. chap. 23 which was addressed ‘to the multitudes’ and ‘to His disciples’ (Matthew 22:1).
Matthew 22:41-46. THE FINAL ENCOUNTER , in which our Lord by His question respecting the Messiah, puts an end to further attempts to ‘ensnare Him by a word.’ Mark and Luke say: ‘No man after that’ ( i.e., the encounter of Matthew 22:34-40) ‘durst ask Him any question,’ while Matthew, in accordance with his rubrical habits, reserves this remark until after this encounter.
Matthew 22:42. What think ye of the Christ? ‘The Messiah.’ The Pharisees included the acknowledged interpreters of the Old Testament. Our Lord would prove the insufficiency of their interpretation on a point which they rightly deemed of most importance. What they thought of Him, He does not ask them. Since He has been abundantly proven to be ‘the Christ,’ the question comes to us in this form, as an all-important one. One answer only can be correct.
Whose Son is he. Not merely a genealogical question, as our Lord shows.
The Son of David. A common title applied to the Messiah. A correct answer, but incomplete. This incompleteness is then proven. On this one-sided view of the Messiah, as a descendant of David, the king and warrior, their false political false hopes had been based.
Matthew 22:43. How then doth David in the Spirit, i.e., by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost; comp. Mark 12:36: ‘by the Holy Ghost’
Call him Lord. Solemnly designate Him thus, implying superiority.
Matthew 22:44. The Lord (Jehovah) said to my Lord. From Psalms 110:1, entitled, ‘a Psalm of David,’ probably written after the prophetic address of Nathan, 2 Samuel 7:12. It is quoted frequently in the New Testament as referring to Christ. The Jews referred it to the Messiah, since no objection was raised at this point ‘My lord’ implies superiority, not only to David himself, but to his own royal race and the people of Israel, or the inquiry would not cause perplexity.
Sit thou at my right hand (the place of honor and trust and power), till I put thine enemies underneath thy feet (until He is complete victor). This refers to an exaltation, exceeding any attainable by a mere man; and to a triumph beyond any political one. The latter thought opposes the false hopes of the Jews, while the whole passage shows the superhuman exaltation of the Messiah.
Matthew 22:45. How is he his son? The solution is not given here; but plainly preached by the Apostles from the day of Pentecost: the Messiah was Son of David according to the flesh, yet the preexistent eternal Son of God: the God-man (comp. Romans 1:3-4). If the Pharisees were ignorant of this solution, it was their own fault, since the Old Testament plainly pointed to it. Probably they were not ignorant. (The words of Caiaphas, chap. Matthew 26:63, indicate knowledge on this point.) Our Lord’s claims involved this: He had been called the ‘Son of David;’ He had claimed to be the Son of God some time before (John 10:24-38), and they afterwards accused Him of so doing. They at least knew what His solution was, and that He claimed to be both ‘Son of David’ and ‘Lord.’
Matthew 22:46. And no one was able, etc. They left Him. Pharisaical Judaism and Christ parted company forever at this point. Henceforth they sought to kill Him by treachery. The next chapter shows the character of those who cherished such hostility against One who claimed to be the Son of God, their own Messiah, and who had proved His claims to be well grounded.