Mat 11:1: Yeshua gave instructions to the disciples on what to do and he sent them on their way. He too was going on this same mission. He departed to the cities in Israel to tell the people “Repent. The kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
(Mat 11:2 NASB) Now when John in prison heard of the works of Christ, he sent word by his disciples,
(Mat 11:3 NASB) and said to Him, “Are You the Expected One, or shall we look for someone else?”
Mat 11:3: John was in a tough situation. He was imprisoned because he condemned the actions of Herod (Matt. 14:3-4). He was understandably confused and distraught. He knew that he was the one announcing the arrival of Messiah and that Yeshua was to set up the Kingdom. But if that is the case, then why was he (John) in prison??
(Mat 11:4 NASB) And Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and report to John what you hear and see:
(Mat 11:5 NASB) the BLIND RECEIVE SIGHT and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the POOR HAVE THE GOSPEL PREACHED TO THEM.
Mat 11:5: John wanted an answer to the question “Are You the One we are to be looking for?” The answer Yeshua told them to give wasn’t just a verbal affirmation. He told them to tell John what they hear and see. This is because they saw Yeshua do is the fulfillment of many of the passages in the Tanakh (Isa. 29:17-19, 35:4-6, 61:1-2, Psalm 72:11-13).
(Mat 11:6 NASB) “And blessed is he who keeps from stumbling over Me.”
Mat 11:6: What does this verse mean? Yeshua is the stumbling block for those who reject Him and His Word (Isa. 8:13-16).
(Mat 11:7 NASB) And as these were going away, Jesus began to speak to the multitudes about John, “What did you go out into the wilderness to look at? A reed shaken by the wind?
(Mat 11:8 NASB) “But what did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in kings’ palaces.
Mat 11:8: The word for “soft clothing” is the word malakos (G3120. malakos, a prim. word; soft, effeminate:– effeminate (1), soft(3).). It means “effeminate.” John was not a girly-man. He was not a reed shaken by the wind. He was strong and steady. To what was he strong and steady? He did not waiver from the Truth of Torah.
Yeshua said the effeminate ones like Barney Frank are in the king’s palaces, not in the wilderness speaking to the masses.
(Mat 11:9 NASB) “But why did you go out? To see a prophet? Yes, I say to you, and one who is more than a prophet.
(Mat 11:10 NASB) “This is the one about whom it is written, ‘BEHOLD, I SEND MY MESSENGER BEFORE YOUR FACE, WHO WILL PREPARE YOUR WAY BEFORE YOU.’
Mat 11:10: Yeshua says that John is more than a prophet. He is the messenger who prepares the way before the great and terrible day of Yahweh (Mal. 3:1-2).
(Mat 11:11 NASB) “Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
Mat 11:11: In this life, there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist. But when the Kingdom of Heaven comes, the one who is least in that kingdom will be greater than John was.
This is referring to the kingdom to come.
(Mat 11:12 NASB) “And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and violent men take it by force.
Mat 11:12: From the time that John the Baptist first started preaching that the kingdom of heaven is coming; violent men have been trying to take it away or stop it from happening.
(Mat 11:13 NASB) “For all the prophets and the Law prophesied until John.
(Mat 11:14 NASB) “And if you care to accept it, he himself is Elijah, who was to come.
Mat 11:14: Whether they accept the Truth or not, John is Elijah who is to come (Mal. 4:4-6).
(Mat 11:15 NASB) “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.
(Mat 11:16 NASB) “But to what shall I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the market places, who call out to the other children,
(Mat 11:17 NASB) and say, ‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn.’
Mat 11:17: Yeshua said this generation is like a bunch of little children who cannot be satisfied. They played music for a dance, they were not interested. They sang a funeral dirge, they did not mourn. There was no satisfying them.
(Mat 11:18 NASB) “For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon!’
(Mat 11:19 NASB) “The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Behold, a gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax-gatherers and sinners!’ Yet wisdom is vindicated by her deeds.”
Mat 11:19: John was a Nazarite who did not party at all and they hated him for it. Yeshua came as a life of the party by eating and drinking with sinners and they called Him a glutton and a drunk. There was no pleasing the people. They would not accept the message from either one.
Yeshua says that wisdom is vindicated by her deeds (Prov. 2).
(Mat 11:20 NASB) Then He began to reproach the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent.
(Mat 11:21 NASB) “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles had occurred in Tyre and Sidon which occurred in you, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.
(Mat 11:22 NASB) “Nevertheless I say to you, it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the day of judgment, than for you.
Mat 11:22: The cities of Bethsaida and Chorazin were cursed because they rejected the message of the kingdom and the miracles that prove the authenticity of the message.
As a matter of fact, the city of Bethsaida hated Yeshua so much that He was not going to perform any more miracles there. Yeshua took a blind man out of that village in order to heal him (Mark 8:22-25).
(Mat 11:23 NASB) “And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You shall descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day.
(Mat 11:24 NASB) “Nevertheless I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for you.”
Mat 11:24: The city of Capernaum rejected the message also. If the corrupt city of Sodom had seen these miracles, they would have repented and not been destroyed.
(Mat 11:25 NASB) At that time Jesus answered and said, “I praise Thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that Thou didst hide these things from the wise and intelligent and didst reveal them to babes.
(Mat 11:26 NASB) “Yes, Father, for thus it was well-pleasing in Thy sight.
Mat 11:26: The Father hid these things from the intelligent and has revealed them to babies. This pleases the Father.
(Mat 11:27 NASB) “All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one knows the Son, except the Father; nor does anyone know the Father, except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.
Mat 11:27: No one knows the Father or the Son unless the Son wills to reveal Himself to someone. So much for “free will.” It would appear that the only ones with “free will” are the Son and the Father.
(Mat 11:28 NASB) “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.
(Mat 11:29 NASB) “Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and YOU SHALL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.
(Mat 11:30 NASB) “For My yoke is easy, and My load is light.”
Mat 11:30: Yeshua is saying that the people should shake off the traditions of men and take His yoke of Torah. Yeshua quotes Jeremiah in order to prove His point (Jer. 6:16). The yoke of Torah is easy and the burden is light (1 John 5:3).
Patrick McGuireCopyright 2014 Patrick McGuire and Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly All rights reserved, no portion of this Lesson may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations in articles and reviews. Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly Fort Smith, Arkansas