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Bible Commentaries
Matthew 26

Peake's Commentary on the BiblePeake's Commentary

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Verses 1-5

Matthew 26:1-5 . The Decision of the Chief Priests ( Mark 14:1 f.*).— Mt. enlarges a simple statement of fact into a prediction by Jesus, and places the meeting of the conspirators in the house of Caiaphas. Luke 22:1 f. is briefer even than Mk.

Verses 6-13

Matthew 26:6-13 . The Anointing of Jesus ( Mark 13:3-9 *)— Mt. follows Mk. very closely, though abbreviating somewhat, e.g. in Matthew 26:7; Matthew 26:9; Matthew 26:11. It is the Fourth Gospel that assigns the anointing to Mary of Bethany and the remonstrance to Judas. In Mk. it is “ some,” in Mt. “ the disciples,” who grumble— thus there is a gradual defining of the culprit. In Mt. Jesus does not hear the murmuring, but “ perceives” it.

Verses 14-16

Matthew 26:14-16 . The Betrayal ( Mark 14:10 f.*, Luke 22:3-6).— Mt., who omits the three hundred pence of the preceding incident, alone tells us that Judas received thirty pieces of silver. This is due to Zechariah 11:12 f. Note how, in contrast to Mk. and Lk., he makes greed the motive of Judas.

Verses 17-19

Matthew 26:17-19 . Preparation for the Last Supper ( Mark 14:12-16 *, Luke 22:7-13).— Mt. again abbreviates. The instruction is given to the Twelve (not to two— in Lk., Peter and John), and they go direct to the friend (a disciple who would understand the phrase “ My time is at hand” ) at whose house the festival is to be kept; nothing is said about the man with the pitcher.

Verses 20-25

Matthew 26:20-25 . Jesus Reveals the Treachery of Judas ( Mark 14:17-21 *, Luke 22:14 ff., Luke 22:21 ff.).

Matthew 26:25, which ( cf. John 13:26) makes Jesus fix the guilt on Judas, is peculiar to Mt. The phrase “ thou hast said” is found again in Matthew 6:4 and Matthew 27:11. In Matthew 26:23 note “ he that dipped” instead of Mk.’ s “ dippeth.”

Verses 26-29

Matthew 26:26-29 . The Bread and the Wine ( Mark 14:22-25 *: Luke 22:17-20 has a different arrangement).— Mt. is practically identical with Mk., but adds ( Matthew 26:28) that the “ blood of the covenant which is shed for many” is “ unto remission of sins” ( cf. Mark 10:45, Hebrews 9:22), and that when Jesus drinks the new wine in His Father’ s Kingdom (Mt. “ kingdom of heaven,” Lk. “ kingdom of God” ) it will be with the disciples.

Verses 30-35

Matthew 26:30-35 . Prediction of the Disciples’ Desertion ( Mark 14:26-31 *).— In Lk. ( Luke 22:31-34) the prediction is confined to Peter. Note in Mt.’ s narrative ( a) the disaster is to be “ this night,” ( Matthew 26:31), ( b) one cockcrow, ( c) the omission of Peter’ s “ exceeding vehement” denial.

Verses 36-46

Matthew 26:36-46 . Gethsemane ( Mark 14:32-42 *, Luke 22:39-46).— Mt. is in closest agreement with Mk., except that he gives the words of the second prayer and states definitely that Jesus prayed a third time.

Matthew 26:45. A question (see Moffatt’ s tr.).

Verses 47-56

Matthew 26:47-56 . The Arrest ( Mark 14:43-50 *, Luke 22:47-53).— Mt. omits Judas’ request that Jesus should be led away safely, but inserts a word of Jesus to Judas ( Matthew 26:50; cf. Luke 22:48). When the servant’ s ear is cut off. Jesus rebukes the use of force ( John 18:11 gives a different reason). Lk. alone records a miracle of healing, Jn. gives the wounded man’ s name. With Matthew 26:52 cf. Revelation 13:10— apparently the precept (like the example) was a guiding principle of the primitive Church in time of persecution. The phrase “ In that hour” ( Matthew 26:55) picks up the story of Matthew 26:50.

Verses 57-68

Matthew 26:57-68 . The Trial before the Sanhedrin ( Mark 14:53-63 *; see also Luke 22:54 f., Luke 22:66-71).— There are no striking divergences from Mk.’ s narrative.

Matthew 26:57 . Apparently we are to think of the Sanhedrin as having been in (informal) session since Matthew 26:3.

Matthew 26:58 . Peter comes “ to see the end,” not “ to warm himself” as in Mk.

Matthew 26:59 . Syr. Sin. says “ witness” (so Mk.), not “ false witness.”

Matthew 26:61 is more simple and perhaps more original than Mk.

Matthew 26:63 . Caiaphas demands that Jesus should take an oath. We should perhaps take the ambiguous reply, “ Thou hast said,” as a refusal ( cf. Matthew 5:34) to do this. Mk. has interpreted it as an affirmation of Messiahship.

Matthew 26:64 . from henceforth: this adverb ( cf. Matthew 26:29 ; Matthew 23:39) here refers to a single moment in the future. It is not to be taken with “ I say.” Jesus is here no doubt speaking of Himself. For the thought cf. Daniel 7:13, Psalms 110:1. “ The power” is a Jewish periphrasis for God. Note Lk., “ the power of God.”

Verses 69-75

Matthew 26:69-75 . Peter’ s Denial ( Mark 14:66-72 *, Luke 22:56-62).— Mt. still keeps closely to Mk., except that (as in Matthew 26:34) he makes one cockcrow suffice. The second challenge ( Matthew 26:71) is from another maid (in Lk. a man), and is answered with an oath. Mt. also notes that it was Peter’ s dialect that stamped him as a Galilean.

Bibliographical Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Matthew 26". "Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/pfc/matthew-26.html. 1919.
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