Matthew 12 Commentary

Please choose a passage:

Matthew 12:1-8

Matthew narrates the first of four confrontations between Jesus and the Pharisees. Who is in charge of the Sabbath: Jesus or the Pharisees?

Matthew 12:9-14

Matthew narrates the second of four confrontations between Jesus and the Pharisees. The Pharisees set a trap for Jesus relating to the healing of a man’s withered hand on the Sabbath.

Matthew 12:15-21

Matthew tells us that Jesus is not harmed by the Pharisees’ plot to destroy Him at this time. He continues to heal people, but is careful to keep His identity as the Messiah a mystery. Matthew highlights how this is another rich fulfillment of one of Isaiah’s prophecies.

Matthew 12:22-29

Matthew narrates the third of four confrontations between Jesus and the Pharisees. Finding themselves unable to deny the miraculous power Jesus has, the Pharisees accuse Him of being a demonic agent. Jesus denies their charge and tells them that the kingdom of God has come upon them.

Matthew 12:30

Jesus speaks two proverbs whose core truth reveals that anyone who is not with Jesus and His kingdom is working against Him.

Matthew 12:31-32

Jesus gives the Pharisees a very serious warning. Anyone who blasphemes the Holy Spirit shall not be forgiven.

Matthew 12:33-37

Jesus shares an analogy of a fruit tree to show the relationship between a man’s words and his heart. He tells the Pharisees that their words are evil because their heart is evil. Words reveal the heart to our glory or shame.

Matthew 12:38-42

Matthew narrates the fourth confrontation between Jesus and the Pharisees. The Pharisees attempt to entrap Jesus by asking for a sign proving that He is the Messiah. Jesus not only dodges their trap, He cryptically tells them that the sign He will give them will be His resurrection. But He knows that even this will not be enough for them, and condemns the obstinance of their unbelief.

Matthew 12:43-45

Jesus describes a strange truth about demon-possession and likens it to this evil generation.

Matthew 12:46-50

Jesus takes an opportunity to teach the truth that whoever lives his life in harmony with God by doing the will of His Father, is His family.