New Testament
Lesson 20
Woe unto You, … Hypocrites

Lesson Highlights

A study of this lesson will help us recognize and avoid hypocrisy and thus strengthen our commitment to Jesus Christ.

Scripture references for study:  Matthew 21–23; John 12:1–8
    Note: Underlined scripture references have been hyperlinked to the LDS Scriptures at and will open in a new window.

Lesson 20 Handout (PDF format)

Mary Anoints Jesus' Feet

"Then Jesus six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was which had been dead, whom he raised from the dead. There they made him a supper; and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with him." (John 12:1-2)

READ JOHN 12:3-8. Jesus anointed by Mary.

A Triumphal Entry Into Jerusalem

READ MATTHEW 21:1-11. The Lord's triumphal entry into Jerusalem.

"Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass." (Zechariah 9:9)

Many hailed Jesus as a prophet and king by their actions on this day.

"And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it" (Luke 19:41). Jesus went on to prophecy that Jerusalem would soon be destroyed (Luke 19:42-44).

After entering the Jerusalem, Jesus went to the temple and cleansed it for a second time.

READ MATTHEW 21:18-22.

Parables To The Jews

Parable of the Two Sons

Parable of the Householder

Scribes & Pharisees Try To Trap Jesus

READ MATTHEW 22:15-22. Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar.

READ MATTHEW 22:23-28. Marriage in the resurrection.

READ MATTHEW 22:34-40.

The Sin Of Hypocrisy - Matthew 23

Jesus identifies and condemns the hypocrisy and wickedness of the scribes and Pharisees.

The eight woes against the Scribes & Pharisees.

READ MATTHEW 23:33-36. The condemnation.


Gospel Doctrine Notebook

What is our eternal goal? Are we truly seeking to gain eternal life, to enjoy the blessings of an eternal family, and desire to live with Heavenly Father? Or are we simply trying to impress others with the amount we pay in tithing or the position we hold. Being mortal, we sometimes tend towards hypocrisy. Unlike the scribes and Pharisees, we need to check ourselves in this and repent. If we have a sincere desire to serve and obey Jesus Christ, motivated by love for and faith in him, we will come closer to him and increase our love and faith.

Record your thoughts on the teachings of the Master as discussed in this lesson.  What principles can you apply to your life?

Resources Used In This Lesson

Conference Reports (CR).

Jesus the Christ by James E. Talmage.

The Mortal Messiah: From Bethlehem to Calvary, Volume 3, by Bruce R. McConkie.

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Changes last made on:  06 April 2015