Let s Study. Mark E. Ross

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1 Let s Study matthew Mark E. Ross THE BANNER OF TRUTH TRUST [iii]

2 Let s Study MATTHEW T H E B A N N E R O F T R U T H T R U S T 3 Murrayfield Road, Edinburgh EH12 6EL, UK P.O. Box 621, Carlisle, PA 17013, USA * Mark E. Ross 2009 isbn: * Typeset in 11/12.5 pt Ehrhardt mt at the Banner of Truth Trust, Edinburgh Printed in the U.S.A. by Versa Press, Inc., East Peoria, IL Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, Copyright 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. [iv]

3 FOR MY MOTHER, BETTY JANE (BROWNFIELD) ROSS whose Hannah-like prayer at my troubled birth offered me to the service of the Lord for the preservation of my life (I Samuel 1:10 11) [v]

4 Let s Study MATTHEW [vi]

5 Contents PUBLISHER S PREFACE AUTHOR S PREFACE READING THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO MATTHEW xi xiii xv 1. The New Beginning (1:1) 1 2. Messiah s Family Tree (1:2 17) 5 3. God with Us (1:18 25) A Light to the Gentiles (2:1 12) Biblical Déjà Vu (2:13 23) Hear Ye! Hear Ye! (3:1 12) The Baptism of Jesus (3:13 17) Testing in the Wilderness (4:1 11) The Time Has Come (4:12 25) New Testament Sinai (5:1 10) You Are... (5:11 16) Greatness in the Kingdom (5:17 20) Body and Soul (5:21 32) The True Standard (5:33 48) Practising Your Righteousness (6:1 18) Seeking the Kingdom (6:19 34) 65 [vii]

6 Let s Study MATTHEW 17. Summing Up the Whole (7:1 12) The Two Ways (7:13 29) Healing Every Disease (8:1 22) Authority to Forgive (8:23 9:17) sheep without a Shepherd (9:18 38) Multiplying the Ministry (10:1 15) sheep in the Midst of Wolves (10:16 11:1) Before the Son of Man Comes (10:23) John s Questions and Ours (11:2 15) sober Warning, Gracious Invitation (11:16 30) Kingdom Opposition (12:1 21) Plundering the Strong Man s House (12:22 37) Warning against Unbelief (12:38 50) teaching in Parables (13:1 23) the Growth of the Kingdom (13:24 43) teaching the Disciples (13:44 52) Rejection (13:53 14:12) It Is I (14:13 36) the Things Which Defile (15:1 28) saviour of the Gentiles (15:29 39) Pharisees and Sadducees (16:1 12) the Christ, the Church, and the Cross (16:13 28) A Voice from the Cloud (17:1 13) down from the Mountain (17:14 27) 165 [viii]

7 Contents 41. the Greatness of Humility (18:1 9) the Seeker of Lost Sheep (18:10 20) Forgiving Your Brother (18:21 35) Family Matters (19:1 15) Kingdom Surprises (19:16 30) surprising Generosity (20:1 16) On Becoming Great (20:17 28) Hosanna to the Son of David (20:29 21:22) Confrontation with the Rulers (21:23 32) Repossessing the Kingdom (21:33 46) the Wedding Feast (22:1 14) taxes and Widows (22:15 33) the Pharisees Strike Back (22:34 46) Woes to Scribes and Pharisees (23:1 24) More Woes (23:25 39) the Olivet Discourse (24:1 14) days of Distress (24:15 28) the Coming of the Son of Man (24:29 51) Wise and Foolish Virgins (25:1 13) the Parable of the Talents (25:14 30) the Final Judgment (25:31 46) the Saviour s Worth (26:1 16) With You (26:17 29) Meeting Temptation (26:30 46) 268 [ix]

8 Let s Study MATTHEW 65. It Must Be So (26:47 68) two Subplots (26:69 27:10) suffered under Pontius Pilate (27:11 31) Crucified, Dead, and Buried (27:32 61) The Third Day He Rose Again from the Dead 289 (27:62 28:15) 70. the All-Embracing Gospel (28:16 20) 294 Additional Note: Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage in Matthew s Gospel 299 GROUP STUDY GUIDE 301 FOR FURTHER READING 329 [x]

9 A New Beginning 1 The New Beginning T he book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham (Matt. 1:1). The Gospel according to Matthew, and with it our New Testament, begins with a title (all of verse 1) rooting its message deeply and firmly in the Old Testament. The very first words of the book in its original Greek text, Biblos geneseos (literally, book of genesis ), are reminiscent of the first book of the Bible. In the Greek version of the Old Testament, so familiar to Matthew s readers, the exact phrase is found in the first two of the ten sections which organize the book of Genesis according to the generations from Adam to Jacob (Gen. 2:4; 5:1). The remaining eight sections then echo this phrase in part. This imitation of Genesis suggests that Matthew (like John, see John 1:1) is announcing a new Genesis, a new beginning, a new creation. The Old Testament had promised this (see Isa. 65:17 25). The New Testament will close with the same announcement: Behold, I am making all things new (Rev. 21:5). As we shall see, Matthew builds his message on both the pattern and the substance of the Old Testament. What was promised long ago is now being fulfilled. This is the good news that Matthew brings to us. Oh, what a message is before us! Is it really possible that all things can be made new? Can our lives be made new? Can the world be made new? Matthew and the New Testament answer these questions with an unequivocal Yes! The Promised Messiah This message of the new beginning is centred in Jesus Christ. We [1]

10 LET S STUDY MATTHEW are so familiar with the name Jesus Christ that we might fail to appreciate how bold a claim Matthew and the New Testament make when using it. Christ is a title applied to Jesus. It is not his last name. It is the New Testament equivalent of the Old Testament word mashiah ( Anointed One, the Messiah). So from the very first sentence of the book, Matthew is claiming that Jesus is the Messiah, Yahweh s Anointed One, the One promised from ancient days to be God s Saviour for his people. Then Matthew extends this bold claim with two others, saying that Jesus Christ is the son of David, the son of Abraham. The Son of David As the son of David, or rather, as the Son of David, Jesus the Christ is that Son promised to David whose throne and kingdom God would establish forever (2 Sam. 7:13). The Old Testament prophets had much to say about this Son. For instance, Jeremiah had predicted: Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely. And this is the name by which he will be called: The Lord is our righteousness (Jer. 23:5 6). Likewise Isaiah spoke, saying: For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this (Isa. 9:6 7). [2]

11 A New Beginning Son of David is a title for Jesus found frequently in Matthew s Gospel (cf. 9:27; 12:23; 15:22; 20:30-31; 21:9; 21:15; 22:42; 22:45). Matthew never wants us to lose sight of the fact that Jesus is the one whose kingdom will never end. He sounds this note in the opening sentence, and he holds it throughout the book. If it is the promised Son of David who makes all things new, they shall be new forever. For his kingdom will never pass away. The Son of Abraham As the son of Abraham Jesus is also the promised seed in whom all the nations (see Matt. 28:18) are to be blessed (Gen. 22:18). Jewish readers in Jesus days would not normally have thought of the promise to Abraham in terms of a singular seed. As a collective noun the singular word seed could and did stand for the whole people of God, and God s promise certainly did guarantee that Abraham s seed would be as numerous as the stars in the sky (Gen. 15:5) or the sand on the seashore (Gen. 22:17). Yet Paul tells us that when God made a covenant with Abraham and his seed, there was a special reason for using the singular term seed (not seeds, see Gal. 3:16). Paul explains that the blessing was most especially promised to one particular seed, Jesus the Christ. In him the covenant would be established, for in him alone the conditions of the covenant would be fully and perfectly kept. By his perfect life of obedience, he would fulfil the demands and obligations of the covenant for his people, thus guaranteeing that the blessings of the covenant would be theirs. By his death he would bear the curse of the covenant in their place, thus freeing them from that condemnation and death that otherwise would have prevented their receiving of the inheritance. Summary Matthew s title promises much, and his book will deliver on that promise. In it Matthew will paint for us a portrait of Jesus using his words and deeds, and in most cases his colours will be taken from the Old Testament. In that portrait we will see the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 4:6). Our own faith will grow and prosper the more we fill our souls [3]

12 LET S STUDY MATTHEW with the blessed truth in this book. We will see the grand unity of the whole Bible. The record Matthew gives us provides abundant proof that Jesus is indeed the Christ, the promised Son of David and Seed of Abraham, in whom all the promises of God will find their Yes and Amen to the glory of God (2 Cor. 1:20). Blessed be his glorious name! [4]

13 Group Study Guide More important than any techniques we may develop is the help of the Spirit enabling us to understand and to apply the Scriptures. Have and encourage a humble, prayerful spirit. 6. Keep faith with the schedule; it is better that some of the group wished the study could have been longer than that others are inconvenienced by it stretching beyond the time limits set. 7. Close in prayer. As time permits, spend the closing minutes in corporate prayer, encouraging the group to apply what they have learned in praise and thanks, intercession and petition. STUDY 1: Matthew 1 AIM: To begin to discover who Jesus is and what he came to do. 1. What names and titles are given to Jesus in this chapter? See verses 1, What is notable about the family tree of this person? See verses What reason is given for the name which the angel commands to be given to the child? See verse What important truth is assured to us in the birth of Jesus? See verse Both sections of this chapter (verses 1 17, 18 25) aim to establish that Jesus is connected to the house of David. What is significant about this? 6. What do we find in this passage to lead us to praise, thanksgiving, confession of sin, intercession for others, and petition for ourselves? For STUDY 2: Read Matthew 2 and chapters 4 5 of the commentary. [305]

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