Jesus Verse by Verse

an expanded commentary on the Gospel of Matthew

Jesus Verse by Verse...

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17:9 “The vision” [Gk.]. Moses and Elijah weren’t literally there, they were seen by the disciples in a vision.
17:11 An Elijah prophet will come to Israel in the last days to prepare them for the return of Christ, just as John the Baptist tried to prepare them for His first coming [see Malachi 4].
17:15 Lunatic [Gk.]- someone struck by the moon. The belief that the moon struck people at night causing them to go mad was a wrong understanding. But Jesus didn’t explicitly correct this. He showed by the magnitude of His miracle that such beliefs, whether or not they had any truth in them, were irrelevant compared to God’s power. Hence references to demon possession decrease throughout the Gospels and New Testament- it became apparent that they don’t exist, or if they do, they are irrelevant compared to God’s power.
17:17 Again Jesus shows His frustration with their lack of spiritual perception- see on 15:16; 16:11. To be frustrated isn’t sinful- for Jesus never sinned. If He so desires understanding from us- let’s give ourselves to trying to understand. And surely He will help us if we ask Him.
17:20 Just a small amount of real faith is very powerful. Faith is so powerful that you don’t need much of it- just a little of the real thing is quite enough.
17:25 Jesus paid tribute tax even when He didn’t have to and when the reasoning behind the demand for it was wrong. We should do the same. We cannot change geopolitics now; we must wait for His return and the coming of God’s Kingdom.
17:27 Jesus was very sensitive to not making people spiritually stumble. Even people whom we would consider as disinterested in His Gospel.