Matthew 4

Matthew 4

Matthew 4:1 NIV

[1] Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.

Satan tempted Jesus when he was tired, hungry and alone. I find that being tired or weakened is usually the time when I am tempted. Jesus was able to withstand the temptation by relying on the word of god. Memorizing scripture is a good way to prepare to overcome temptation. 

Three times Satan tempts Jesus. The first two times the temptation begins “if you are the son of god…”. A prideful person would want to prove that they were indeed the son of god but Jesus resists. 

Satan tempted Jesus by asking him to produce a miracle for himself – turn stones into bread, to test god by jumping off a tower and have angels rescue him, and with power over the world. I am not tempted by these things as they are completely unrealistic for me. Satan tempts me with things that are more realistic and more in line with my current life. 

Matthew 4:6 NIV [6] “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: “ ‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’ ”

Satan also quotes scripture so knowing scripture does not make us a follower of Christ. We must live the scripture and believe that Jesus Christ is our lord and savior and the true son of god. 

Matthew 4:18-19 NIV

[18] As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. [19] “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”

Usually the students would come to the teachers but Jesus went looking for his disciples. As he called them they left everything for him. I wonder if he calls me will I be ready to leave everything?

Matthew 4:23 NIV

[23] Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people.

There was no dispute about the miracles that Jesus was performing. 

Matthew 3

Matthew 3

John the Baptist preaches saying “repent for the kingdom of heaven is near.”  A person who repents stops rebelling and turns around to start following god.  Repentance means we must confess our sins and turn away from them. I find that this is nearly impossible on my own. But with god all things are possible. We need to stop trying to do it on our own and rely on god to help us. 

John the Baptist helped prepare people to meet Jesus. As a believer I should be following in his footsteps. I cannot concert anyone but I can introduce them to Jesus and then let god do the rest. 

John also confronts the religious leaders calling the a brood of vipers. 

Jesus comes to John to be baptized.  This may have been his sign that he was ready to take on the sins of humanity. 

Matthew 3:15 NIV

[15] Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” Then John consented.

Matthew 3:16-17 NIV

[16] As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. [17] And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”

With the numbers of people coming to John to be baptized there must have been many eye witnesses to this event. 

Matthew 2

Matthew 2

Magi from the East came to Jerusalem to see The Who was born to be king of the Jews. Herod called together the chief priests and teachers of the law who knew the prophesy that the messiah would be born in Bethlehem. Herod sent the Magi to find the baby and not the chief priests. 

The magi may have been from Parthia near the site of Babylon. Parthia was an enemy of Rome and as powerful. 

The magi presented gold and incense and Myrrh. Gold for a king, incense for a God, and Myrrh, which was used for embalming, to foreshadow the death. 

God directs Joseph to take his family to Egypt to avoid the killing of boys due to Herod’s jealousy. 

God then directs Joseph to come back from Egypt when Herod dies but Herod’s son is ruling in Jerusalem so Joseph goes to Nazareth. 

Herod, like most Jews of that time thought that the messiah would be a great military ruler and fight for political freedom. Jesus came instead to wage a spiritual battle and fight for souls. 

Matthew 1

Matthew 1

Matthew lists the genealogy of Jesus which includes Ruth and includes the statement that Solomon’s mother had been the wife of Uriah the Hittite. 

The genealogy is a quick way to recite all the history contained in the Old Testament from Abraham. The readers at that time would know all the names and their stories. 

The four women mentioned in this genealogy all have ties to gentiles. Three were gentiles that married into Israel and Bathsheba was an Israelite that married a Hittite before she married David. 

Matthew 1:19 NIV

[19] Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.

Joseph could have divorced her publicly but did not want to make it public. 

By marrying her Joseph adopted the child and gave him a birthright and heritage but also adopted the shame of Mary being pregnant before marriage. 

Reading through the New Testament

I will be posting some thoughts as I read through the New Testament.  I welcome input and polite discussion.

Here is some information I found in the Gospels to get started.

Matthew concentrates on how Jesus came to fulfill Jewish prophecy.   No other gospel so forcefully shows the hypocritical outlook of the Pharisees. Jesus is portrayed as a teacher. 

Mark emphasizes action.  He stresses how Jesus taught that he must suffer and be rejected. 

Luke stressed the blessing of salvation.  Luke brings out the grace of god revealed in Jesus. 

John reveals Jesus as the one sent by god. John brings out the eternal significance of the god become man. 

The good news demanded a response. Jesus calls us to repent and become his disciples. 

The gospel forces us to make a decision as to who Jesus is. Is he a prophet, is he a crazy man, is he the son of god?

As a believer, I cannot concert anyone. I can only provide you with the information and then it is up to you to make the decision as to who Jesus is. I hope you make the same choice I did that Jesus is the Son of God and my Lord and Savior.

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