Luke 20:1-19

Talks for Growing Christians

Confrontation with Jewish Leaders; The Parable of the Vineyard

Luke 20:1-19

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Lesson Number 52

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. The Lord’s question about John the Baptist answered His antagonists.
  2. The Lord’s parable of the vineyard anticipated His murder.

Practical Application

  1. If you stumble over the stone, you will be broken.


  1. Review the daily events of the Lord’s final week before the cross, as you have studied them thus far.
  2. Why did Jesus’ question in verse 4 put the Jewish leaders in a dilemma?
  3. How did Jesus’ question answer the Jewish leaders’ question about His authority?
  4. Why were the Jewish leaders portrayed as vineyard keepers in the Lord’s parable?
  5. Explain the meaning of verse 17, a quotation from Psalm 118:22.


  1. Sunday was the Triumphal Entry and Monday was the cleansing of the Temple (Luke 19). Luke 20-21 covers the events on Tuesday of the final week.
  2. If they said John’s baptism was from heaven, then they condemned themselves, because they all knew that John had pointed to Jesus as the Messiah. If they said John the Baptist’s ministry was man-made and John was not really a prophet of God, then they feared being stoned to death by the people for blasphemy, because the people knew that John was a true prophet of God.
  3. Christ’s authority was the same authority as the authority of John the Baptist, namely, the authority of God.
  4. The vineyard keepers had the responsibility to look out for the owner’s vineyard. And the Jewish leaders were responsible to properly lead the nation of Israel, God’s vineyard.
  5. The Lord, as the true Messiah of Israel, would be rejected then, but would become the key to the future of the whole nation and the world.


  1. Read the parable of the vineyard in Isaiah 5. Discuss its similarities with the Lord’s parable here. God expected spiritual fruit from His chosen people, but there was no fruit. Who did the Lord blame for this lack of fruit? What were the consequences?


  1. If you stumble over Christ and do not accept His claims as God as your only means of salvation, you will be broken. Don’t reject Christ, the chief cornerstone.

Key Verses

  • “‘Tell us, by what authority are You doing these things? Or who is he who gave You this authority?’ But He answered and said to them, ‘I also will ask you one thing, and answer Me: The baptism of John -- was it from heaven or from men?’” Luke 20:2-4
  • “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.” Luke 20:17

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