View Teaching Summary

Matthew 20:1-19  The Kingdom of Heaven is like …

The connection of Yeshua’s coming and teachings to the fulfillment of what was written in the Law, the Prophets, and the writings concerning Him is a vital key to understanding the Kingdom of Heaven. Answering the questions of the rich young ruler about how to inherit eternal life, in the presence of the disciples, left Yeshua’s disciples perplexed because they had left everything to follow Yeshua. 

Introspectively and verbally, the disciples asked questions concerning the cost they were paying to follow Yeshua, when they would see a return, and their place in this Kingdom Yeshua spoke about.

In this portion of Matthew, Yeshua continues to expound on the previous Chapter’s question asked by His disciples and the closing comment of Chapter 19 when He said, “But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first”. Yeshua shares a parable with His disciples to help them understand and prepare them for the Kingdom of Heaven He had come to bring.

The Kingdom, the Kingdom of God, and the Kingdom of Heaven are used interchangeably throughout the New Testament.

The Kingdom is so vast and encompasses so many aspects of life, that Yeshua uses a variety of teaching methods to help His disciples and others to try and understand it. 

The Kingdom has always existed but mysteriously hidden from the world until John the Baptist came preaching about it and Yeshua ushered it in and offered it to Israel, the heirs of the Kingdom.

The Kingdom of God/Heaven is the most misunderstood Kingdom of all. The Kingdom of God/Heaven is visible and can be entered into but only by supernatural means requiring a supernatural rebirth called being born again.

The Kingdom of God/Heaven is greater than all man-made kingdoms combined but exists within all the kingdoms of the world.

Theologically speaking, the Kingdom of God is defined as the sovereign rule of God manifested in Messiah to defeat His enemies, creating a people over whom He reigns and issuing in a realm or realms in which the power of His reign is experienced.

The Kingdom of God/Heaven does not operate by worldly standards, nor is it governed by man-made rules and laws but governed by the King of the Kingdom.

On many occasions Yeshua explained aspects of the Kingdom in order to get His disciples to understand it, enter into it, operate accordingly, and teach the Kingdom Gospel to the world.

In this passage, Yeshua picks up where He left off in the previous chapter. This teaching is designed to expose the hearts of the disciples so that they could see what was in them.  This is similar to why YeHoVaH caused the Israelites to wander in the wilderness for forty years to show them what was in their hearts.

  • Dt 8:2 Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands.


  • Mt 20:1 For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard.


Like – 3664 ὅμοιος homoios {hom'-oy-os} 

Meaning:  1) like, similar, resembling 1a) like: i.e. resembling 1b) like: i.e. corresponding to a thing 

Usage:  AV - like 47; 47

The householder owned the vineyard but required labourers to work the vineyard. 

  • Mt 20:2 And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard.

      Penny – 1220 δηνάριον denarion {day-nar'-ee-on} Meaning:  denarius = "containing ten" 1) A Roman silver coin in NT time. It            was the principal silver coin of the Roman empire. From the parable of the labourers in the vineyard, it would seem that a                    denarius was then the ordinary pay for a day's wages. (Mt. 20:2-13) 

Origin:  of Latin origin; Usage:  AV - penny 9, pence 5, pennyworth 2; 16

  • Mt 20:3 And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, 
  • Mt 20:4 And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. 
  • Mt 20:5 Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. 
  • Mt 20:6 And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? 
  • Mt 20:7 They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive. 
  • Mt 20:8 So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first.

At the end of the day, the householder would have hired laborers at various times of the day and then gathered them together to pay them their wages.

In societies today you have day laborers, laborers who agree to weekly paychecks, and annual salary workers who are paid bi-weekly and monthly.

Torah/Law required that if you hired a man for the day, you paid him at the end of the day.

  • Lev 19:13 Thou shalt not defraud thy neighbour, neither rob him: the wages of him that is hired shall not abide with thee all night until the morning.
  • Dt 24:14 Thou shalt not oppress an hired servant that is poor and needy, whether he be of thy brethren, or of thy strangers that are in thy land within thy gates: 
  • Dt 24:15 At his day thou shalt give him his hire, neither shall the sun go down upon it; for he is poor, and setteth his heart upon it: lest he cry against thee unto the LORD, and it be sin unto thee.
  • Mt 20:9 And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny.


Penny – 1220 δηνάριον denarion {day-nar'-ee-on} Meaning:  denarius = "containing ten" 1) A Roman silver coin in NT time. It was the principal silver coin of the Roman empire. From the parable of the labourers in the vineyard, it would seem that a denarius was then the ordinary pay for a day's wages. (Mt. 20:2-13) 

Origin:  of Latin origin; Usage:  AV - penny 9, pence 5, pennyworth 2; 16

Everyone got paid in front of the others, so that the ones who came first saw what the ones who came last got paid.

  • Mt 20:10 But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny. 
  • Mt 20:11 And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house, 
  • Mt 20:12 Saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day. 

They murmured, but the goodman/householder heard what was being said and spoke to one of them who may have murmured.

  • Mt 20:13 But he answered one of them, and said, Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny? 
  • Mt 20:14 Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. 
  • Mt 20:15 Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good?

Every aspect of our lives is governed by law.

People operate their lives based on self-imposed laws or rules.

Legalist and legalism are legal terms. The moment you brand someone as a legalist, you become a legalist.

  • Laws of Creation/Nature
  • Man-made laws and rules that governed our society (A Nation of laws), (No one is above the law).
  • Laws of God – YeHoVaH (God) is a Lawgiver

Isa 33:22 For the LORD is our judge, the LORD is our lawgiver, the LORD is our king; he will save us.


Jas 4:12 There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?

Mt 20:16 So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen. 

It is often said by gentile Christians that the Jews killed Jesus. However, Yeshua speaks about His death in this passage and identifies the players that would be involved in His execution.

  • Mt 20:17 And Yeshua going up to Jerusalem took the twelve disciples apart in the way, and said unto them,  
  • Mt 20:18 Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn him to death, 
  • Mt 20:19 And shall deliver him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him: and the third day he shall rise again.


  • The betrayer: Judas
  • The orchestrator of the betrayal: The Chief Priest and Scribes – Jews/Hebrews
  • The executors, mockers, scourgers, crucifiers: Gentiles/Romans 
  • The Designer of the plan: YeHoVaH

Spread the love