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Who is Jesus? Luke 20:41-44


Who is Jesus?                            (click here for audio)

Luke 20:41-44                                               

You might say Luke 20 is a chapter of Questions.    Not so much questions to learn the answers to unfamiliar things.  We have already seen how questions were put to Jesus to cause him to say something to stir up controversy,  and lead to his arrest.

In the first part of chapter 20 -  there were questions about the Lord’s authority. There were questions about paying taxes to Caesar.  There were questions about the resurrection of the dead.

The scribes and Pharisees tried to trap Jesus with their questions.  They failed.  With all their best efforts,  they were no match for the wisdom of our Lord.

We read in  v.40  “For they no longer dared to ask him any question.”     Jesus puts them to silence.   Now He will ask a question.

 There’s a motive for asking this question.    This will be the last opportunity to present to them claims about himself.  It’s one last evangelistic effort to point them to His true identity.  Before Jesus quotes Psalm 110,  he begins by asking a question.   The question is given in Matthew 22:41 which is more information not seen in Luke 20.

Now while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them a question, 42 saying, “What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?” They said to him, “The son of David.”

What do you think about the Christ?  The Messiah?   Whose son is he?   They answered exactly the way Jesus expected them to answer -   “the son of David”      That was the answer always given.   Everyone gave that answer

That’s the Jewish response – the Christ is the son of David. 

Now we look in Luke 20:41    But he said to them, “How can they say that the Christ is David’s son?”

I.           A Serious Question:  

Who is Jesus?   Who is Christ?  These are serious Questions, not to be taken lightly,  not to be dismissed as nothing.    There’s much at stake here.



#1 It’s a definitive question.

How you answer this question defines where you stand with God.   It defines where you stand as far as eternity is concerned.


Jesus points out the seriousness  of WHO HE IS   with his disciples

Matt 16:13-18

13 Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” 14 And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.   


        Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah!

a)   Defines -   who will be blessed,    who will be cursed

Flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven.

b)   Defines -   who will be heaven

Upon this rock I will build my church

c)   Defines -  who will be  saved and included in his church




Paul shows how serious it is -   Knowing Who Jesus is, and accepting him for Who He is….. determines whether you will be saved.

Romans 10:9

because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved


To be saved  you must believe Jesus is the Lord that’s describe in Psalm 110:1      “the Lord said to my Lord”

That means….  He’s more than a Messiah who is a man;  a perfect man;  to be David’s Lord,  he also must be God…..


No one can remain neutral about WHO JESUS IS…..  no one can remain sitting on the fence….. and not take a position….


C.S. Lewis   Mere Christianity    "“I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God. That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.”

Answering the Question as to WHO JESUS IS….  It’s so serious  that it makes it an URGENT QUESTION….

#2  It’s an Urgent Question

In our text  it’s late on Wednesday……  and Friday’s coming…. On Friday  Jesus will be crucified  and  then  Sunday rise from the dead…..    Time is running out for those who have not come to believe in Christ.    This is the last time Jesus will encounter these religious leaders.    Look back in chapter 19      19:41-42   And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it,   42 saying,  “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace!  But now they are hidden from your eyes,

Jesus sees what is about to come upon them.    There is death and destruction for all who reject Him.        And the Lord says in Ezekiel   “I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked”  (Ezekiel 33:11)

There is urgency  in what Jesus says in the last remaining days before he gives His life as the Lamb of God.  Look at Mark 12:35-37.  This is the same as given in Luke.   Back up to v.34 “ You are not far from the kingdom of God.”     A great throng of people heard him gladly.   Some no doubt believed and were saved.   Yet there were many who were so close to salvation,  not far from the kingdom of God,  and still refused to enter in.   They refused to believe.    So close in one way,  and yet so far away.   To the scribes and Pharisees Jesus said,   This people honors me with their lips,  but their heart is far from me;   (Matthew 15:8)

The next day Judas Iscariot will betray Jesus with a kiss.    How close can you get than that?   Judas will kiss the door to heaven, and enter the door to hell.

No wonder there is urgency in this Question---  Who is the Christ?   Whose Son is he?   Who is Jesus?     Who do men say that I am?   Think about the question from Pilate   “What Shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?”  (Matt. 27:22)

Many today are standing on the precipice of disaster.    At great peril they risk their eternal souls refusing to bow to the Lordship of Christ.  They don’t have the right answer,  not because there is no evidence,  no facts,  no way of knowing the truth.  It’s stubborn disobedience,  stubborn pride, the love of sin that locks the door of their heart. 

II.          A Short Answer -    He is the Son of David.

Psalm 89:3-4 You have said, “I have made a covenant with my chosen one;
    I have sworn to David my servant:‘I will establish your offspring forever,
    and build your throne for all generations.’”

Amos 9:11  11 “In that day I will raise up  the booth of David that is fallen
and repair its breaches,   and raise up its ruins and rebuild it as in the days of old,

Micah 5:2   speaks of the ruler of Israel will come from Bethlehem (city of David)

People in Jesus’s time here on earth understood….

Matthew 12:23  And all the people were amazed, and said, “Can this be the Son of David?”

Matthew 15:22  And behold, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and was crying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon.”

Matthew 20:30  two blind cried out   “Lord, have mercy on us, Son of David” 

Matthew 21:9  And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David!

According to scriptures….the Messiah had to be in the lineage of David……if Jesus was not in the genealogy that goes back to David,  the Pharisees and scribes would bring it ….but you never hear of it.  And it’s not they didn’t keep records.   They had excellent genealogical records until 70 AD when Jerusalem was destroyed.  

He is the Son of David…..that’s the correct answer,  but it’s SHORT of being the correct answer.. There’s more to Who Jesus is….

And really no one is debating this.    This speaks of his humanity.  He came through the line of David.

Their answer ---  the Messiah,  the Christ  is the Son of David….it’s correct, but it’s not the entire answer.

An incomplete answer is the wrong answer.  Many false religions will say Jesus was born of Mary.  That’s correct, but that’s not all.   False religions will say Jesus was a Good Teacher.  That’s correct, but that’s not all. 

Getting part of it right is not sufficient.  To be saved you must believe Christ is the Son of God.



III.       A Shocking Reality   “The Lord said to my Lord” 

This is the shocker!     The Lord said to my Lord

The Jewish people knew this Psalm 110 was a psalm about the Messiah.   They were looking and longing for the day when Christ would come to take his rightful place on the throne.

a)   Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool


This speaks of how the Messiah would subdue all of the enemies of God.  

The image of   “making your enemies your footstool”      “a place to rest your foot”   …see this with Joshua.

Joshua was a mighty warrior for God.  He defeated the enemies of Israel.   At one time there were 5 kings who were captured and listen to Joshua 10:24


24 And when they brought those kings out to Joshua, Joshua summoned all the men of Israel and said to the chiefs of the men of war who had gone with him, “Come near; put your feet on the necks of these kings.” Then they came near and put their feet on their necks. 25 And Joshua said to them, “Do not be afraid or dismayed; be strong and courageous. For thus the Lord will do to all your enemies against whom you fight.” 26 And afterward Joshua struck them and put them to death, and he hanged them on five trees.


Their enemies became footstools for their feet, and it points to their execution.

This is what the Messiah will do -  destroy the enemies of God.     For centuries the Jews believed this Psalm 110 to be a Messianic Psalm.

Here’s the shocking truth-   Jesus took this familiar Psalm and in a brief few comments  opened a grand revelation of what is meant   “The Lord said to my Lord”.


You have two words for Lord -  The first Lord is the Hebrew word  Yahweh”  -  God’s covenant name,  It is the name revealed to Moses at the burning bush   “I Am That that I AM”    I am Yahwek, the Self Existent ONE.  I am Omnipotent God.   

The second Lord is the Hebrew word  Adonai” and means Master -  This is the Messiah.


Yahweh is speaking to Adonai,  the Messiah.     Never think for a moment there are two Lords….there is only ONE Lord….


But there is only ONE Lord    Ephesians 4:4-6

There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.



David  (see v.44)   calls him Lord, so how is he his son?


How can the Messiah be both  David’s Lord, and  David’s  son?


As David’s Lord -  He is God eternal,

As David’s son -  He is the God who entered history and became a man in time


This is a shocking reality to the Jewish leaders that the Messiah is both  fully man and fully God.    That’s how David can both call him Lord and his son.

   Some say David was mistaken when he used the words,  “The Lord said to my Lord”


This takes us to the next point --



IV.        The Spirit-Inspired Truth

A.   The Holy Spirit   confirms the Scriptures  as to the nature and Person of Christ.

What Jesus reads are words  inspired by the Holy Spirit.   

Jesus points out that the writings of David were given by the Holy Spirit.

Matthew 22:43   He said to them, “How is it then that David, in the Spirit, calls him Lord, ….

Mark 12:36       David himself, in the Holy Spirit, declared,  “‘The Lord said to my Lord,

Acts 4:25   who through the mouth of our father David, your servant, said by the Holy Spirit,

This is not David speaking incorrectly;    it’s David speaking and recording the very words given by the Holy Spirit.

The Word of God  will never declare Jesus to be only a man.  The Word of God declares Jesus to be the Son of God.

John 10:30-33 

 I and the Father are one.”

31 The Jews picked up stones again to stone him. 32 Jesus answered them, “I have shown you many good works from the Father; for which of them are you going to stone me?” 33 The Jews answered him, “It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you but for blasphemy, because you, being a man, make yourself God.”

John 20:28   “Thomas answered….  “My Lord and My God”.

Acts 20:28    Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.

1Tim. 3:16    And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness:

God was manifested in the flesh,

Isaiah 9:6

For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.


B.   The Holy Spirit confirms to the Saints as to the nature and person of Christ.

1Cor. 12:3 Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking in the Spirit of God ever says “Jesus is accursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except in the Holy Spirit.

1John 4:1-3

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God.


Who do you say Jesus is?     Is He your Lord and Savior?    Do you believe Jesus to be the Son of God,  God who came in the flesh? 

I go back to what Jesus asked of his disciples.     Who do men say?   They said some say you are one of the prophets, but Jesus asked,   Who do you say I am?      There’s the most important question.   I trust everyone can answer it,  not just a head knowledge answer,   but from the heart  you know Christ.    He is your Joy.  Your Treasure. 

And I pray the coming year,  you will grow more in His love,    grow more in His grace,  grow more in the knowledge of Christ,    grow more in our Service for Christ  being a witness of His saving grace to people who do not know Him.


 ----------------outline for church bulletin---------------------------------


Who is Jesus?


Luke 20:41-44


41 But he said to them, “How can they say that the Christ is David's son? 42 For David himself says in the Book of Psalms,  “‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand,
43     until I make your enemies your footstool.”’ 44 David thus calls him Lord, so how is he his son?”


(parallel passages -  Matthew 22:41-46;   Mark 12:35-37




I.            A Serious Question


a.    A Definitive Question   Matt. 16:13-18


Romans 10:9;   Psalm 110:1


b.    It’s an Urgent Question      Luke 19:41-42


Mark 12:34-37


II.          A Short Answer       “Son of David”


Psalm 89:3-4;   Amos 9:11;  Micah 5:2; 


Matt. 12:23;  15:22;  20:30;  21:9


III.        A Shocking Reality   “the Lord said to my Lord”


a.    Sit at my right hand…enemies footstool -  see example from Joshua 10:24


b.    The Lord – Yahweh – said to my Lord – Adonai


c.    One Lord -  Ephesians 4:4-6


d.    AS David’s Lord -  He is God eternal


e.    AS David’s son -  He is God who entered history and became a man


IV.         The Spirit-Inspired Truth


A.   The Holy Spirit confirms the Scriptures


Matt. 22:43   Mark 12:36     Acts 4:25


Bible verses speaks of Jesus as Son of God; and God  John 10:30-33   20:28;  Acts 20:28;  1Tim 3:16;  Is. 9:6


B.   The Holy Spirit confirms the Saints


1Cor. 12:3      1John 4:1-3




 Message delivered 1/1/17  at Swan Creek Baptist Church,  920 Big Swan Creek Rd, 

Hampshire, TN   38461  by Pastor Chris Gowen    Email:




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