In contrast to those whom Christ cast out of His Father’s house, who does Matthew record that Jesus received at the temple? See Mat 21:14. What is the significance of this juxtaposition? See Luk 1:53. What did He do for the blind and the lame? What is the significance that it was after the cleansing of the temple that Matthew records Jesus’ healing miracles as taking place there? Is God attentive to those who cry out to Him from a polluted temple? See Isa 1:10-15, Eze 8:16-18. Should we expect it to be any different today? Is it possible that one reason many churches today do not experience similar miracles is because they need first to be cleansed of the worldly defilements that are incompatible with the holiness of God’s nature?
What were the “wonderful things” Matthew mentions in 21:15 that the chief priests and scribes saw that Jesus had done? See Mat 21:14 and note that the word used appears only here in the NT, but is used regularly in the LXX for miracles: see Exo 3:20, Jdg 6:13. What should the response be to God’s wonders, especially by His people? See 1Ch 16:9, Psa 71:17, 77:11-15, 78:4, 105:2, Joh 10:24-25, 37-38, 14:10-11. Why is that? See Psa 72:18, Joh 9:32-33. What was the response of the children in the temple to the wonderful things Jesus had done, and why is it significant? Cf. Mat 19:14. What was the response of the chief priests and scribes, and how did it contrast with that of the children? Cf. Luk 6:6-11, 13:10-17, Joh 5:9-10,16, 9:24-34. What is the significance of this contrast? See 1Co 1:27-29, Mat 11:25. What should the response of the religious leaders have been to such wonderful things even though they conflicted with their religious dogmas? Cf. Joh 7:50-51, Act 5:34-39. What does this teach us should be our response when wonderful things appear to be happening through ministries that conflict with our theological understandings? On the other hand, because wonderful things happen in a ministry is it necessarily a clear sign that God is at work and we should give heed to that ministry? See Deut 13:1-4, 2Co 11:14-15, 2Th 2:9-10.
The religious leaders firmly believed they were disciples of Moses who were faithfully following in the footsteps of their fathers; what did their actions reveal about who their fathers really were? See Neh 9:17, Psa 78:11-17, 32. From their example, should we ever suppose that it is only because people have not seen the wondrous acts of God that they do not believe? Cf. Luk 16:27-31, Rom 1:18-19. What is the great danger of such religious pretense, hypocrisy and self-delusion that is divorced from a pure heart and a sincere, humble, childlike faith? See Mat 23:29-38.
What sinful aspect of the religious leaders’ character does their indignation at the children’s hosannas reveal? Cf. Mat 27:18, Pro 27:4. Again, what does such an attitude indicate about which of their fathers’ footsteps they were following in? See 1Sa 18:6-9. What ought their attitude to have been? See Joh 3:26-30. What does this teach us our own heart attitude should be at the just praise of others who excel us? What is the root sin that causes us to bristle at others being exalted above us, and what is the antidote that delivers us from it? See Pro 16:18-19, Rom 12:3, 1Pe 5:6; cf. also Rom 2:29c. If we are walking in the light and being good stewards of all the talents that God has entrusted to us and exercising the gifts He has given us to further His kingdom, is there any reason to feel envious of the talents and gifts entrusted to others? See 1Co 12:4-6,11,18. Is there any reason to be envious that others are more esteemed by men than we are? Cf. Luk 16:15. On the other hand, if we are not faithfully fulfilling God’s will in our life, why is it natural for our fallen nature to feel envious towards others who are? See Joh 3:19-21.