Mat 22 outline:
Mat 22:1-14, The parable of the wedding feast for the king’s son
Mat 22:15-22, Pharisees question Jesus about taxes
Mat 22:23-33, Sadducees question Jesus about the resurrection
Mat 22:34-40, A lawyer questions Jesus about the commandments
Mat 22:41-46, Jesus questions the Pharisees about the Son of David
Mat 20:1-22:14 chiastic structure:
1a) Mat 20:1-16, The parable of the workers in the vineyard;
1a) Mat 20:1-7, The landowner hired laborers for his vineyard, agreeing upon a denarius a day;
1b) Mat 20:8, ‘Call the laborers and give them their wages, beginning with the last to the first;’
central axis) Mat 20:9-10, The last laborers received a denarius, the same as the first laborers;
2b) Mat 20:11-12, When the first laborers received their wages, they complained against the landowner;
2a) Mat 20:13-15, The landowner answered them, Did you not agree with me for a denarius?
conclusion) Mat 20:16, So the last will be first, and the first last. For many are called, but few chosen.
1b) Mat 20:17-28, Jesus foretold His death and resurrection/ ruling in the kingdom of heaven;
1c) Mat 20:29-33, Jesus healed two blind men;
central axis) Mat 21:1-13, Jesus entered Jerusalem praised as Messiah/ cleansed the temple of money changers;
2c) Mat 21:14, The blind + lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them;
2b) Mat 21:15-46, Chief priests + scribes confronted Jesus/ He indicts them in parables;
1a) Mat 21:15-17, Chief priests + scribes were indignant/ children praised Him as the Son of David;
1b) Mat 21:18-22, The fig tree withered that did not bear fruit;
1c) Mat 21:23-26; The chief priests confront Yeshua’s authority / They did not believe John;
1d) Mat 21:27, The chief priests do not answer Jesus’ question;
central axis) Mat 21:28-30, The parable of the father and his two sons;
2d) Mat 21:31a, The chief priests do answer Jesus’ question;
2c) Mat 21:31b-32, Tax collectors + harlots believed John/ The chief priests did not repent or believe him;
2b) Mat 21:33-44, The landowner who does not receive his fruit in its season/ the stone the builders rejected;
2a) Mat 21:45-46, The chief priests + Pharisees sought to lay hold of Him, but the multitude believed Him a prophet;
2a) Mat 22:1-14, Parable of the wedding feast for the king’s son;
1a) Mat 22:1-5, Those who were invited to the wedding were not willing to come when called;
1b) Mat 22:6-7, The king’s armies destroyed the murderers of his servants;
1c) Mat 22:8-9, Invite to the wedding as many as you find;
central axis) Mat 22:10a, So those servants went out into the highways + gathered together all whom they found, both good and bad;
2c) Mat 22:10b, The wedding hall was filled with guests;
2b) Mat 22:11-13, The king’s servants cast out the guest without a wedding garment;
2a) Mat 22:14, Many are called but few are chosen.
The B pair is forced together by the surrounding elements, which clearly pair. But how do they themselves pair?
1B: Mat 20:17-28, Jesus foretold His death and resurrection/ ruling in the kingdom of heaven;
2B: Mat 21:15-46, Chief priests + scribes confronted Jesus/ He indicts them in parables.
The two parables He tells which indicts them, are the parable of the father with two sons, one who gives lip service but does not obey him, and the other which does not give lip service but does obey him. By this parable, Jesus is showing the difference between the chief priests and Pharisees, who talk the religious talk but who do not believe either John the Baptist or Jesus, and the tax collectors and sinners, who do not talk the talk – who are in fact despised by the religious professionals – but who believed both John and Jesus, and repented at their preaching. And the second parable is the landowner who does not receive his fruit when he sends for it. The servants who are in his employ, beat his messengers and kill his son whom he sends to collect his due.
The chief priests and the Pharisees are the ones who have made themselves great in the kingdom of heaven, and who have established themselves as the ruling authority, but who do not serve, rather lording it over. Those who would be the greatest in the kingdom, must be the servant of all.
The parable of the landowner who does not receive his fruit when due, moreover includes the death of the landowner’s son at the hands of his servants, so it is a matching pair to the prophecy of His death and resurrection. The boundaries of the 2B chiastic element relate the chief priests’ indignation at Jesus, and that they sought to lay hold of Him. These events, by the way, are taking place in Jerusalem in the week leading up to Passover – the day which Jesus is crucified on the cross.