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06 June 23, 2013, Come Follow Me, Matthew 9;9-13

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  • 1. Come, Follow Me MATTHEW 9:9-13 JUNE 23, 2013 FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI USA
  • 2. JUNE MEMORY VERSE Matthew 28:19-20 “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of
  • 3. the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20
  • 4. LET FREEDOM RING CONCERT Sunday, June 30th 6:00 p.m. After the concert, we will have a Block Party on President Street. 
  • 5. The Capital City Stage Band will be with us and we will have inflatables for the children to play in.  We will be serving “Homemade Ice Cream!”
  • 6. June 30—Lesson 1 from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association “The Effective Christian Life” Acts 8:26-38 Philip and the Ethiopian
  • 7. July 7th—Lesson 2 “The Christian Witness” ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL RALLY IN FELLOWSHIP HALL EAST AT 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • 8. July 7th lesson led by Ken Blackstock and Ken Sims. July 14th--Lesson 3 “The Care of New Christians” 1 Thessalonians 2 & 3
  • 9. WHAT’S THE #1 THING?
  • 10. BRING GLORY TO GOD!
  • 11. 1 Corinthians 10:31 KJV 31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
  • 12. Two weeks ago we studied Ephesians 2:8-10.
  • 13. Ephesians 2:8-10 KJV 8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
  • 14. 10 For we are his (poiema) workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:8-10 KJV
  • 15. It is from poiema (workmanship) that we get our word “poem”. You are a beautiful masterpiece of God’s literary workmanship.
  • 16. You are God’s poem, allow Him to write the next verse in your life, allow Him to write the next chapter of your story!
  • 17. Matthew 9:9-13 KJV 9 And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he
  • 18. arose, and followed him. 10 And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.
  • 19. 11 And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?
  • 20. 12 But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
  • 21. 13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. Matthew 9:9-13 KJV
  • 22. The MacArthur New Testament Commentary, Copyright © Moody Press and John MacArthur, Jr., 1983-2007.
  • 23. *Matthew: the tax collector *Come, Follow Me *Greek vs Hebrew Methods of Teaching
  • 24. *The Jewish Educational System of Jesus’ Day *Jesus: A Jewish Rabbi and His Yoke *Follow in His Dust
  • 25. *The Holy Spirit! *PBPGINFWMY *You are God’s Masterpiece
  • 26. Matthew: the tax collector
  • 27. As Jesus left "His own city“ of Capernaum, He passed on from there and saw a man, called Matthew (“gift of Jehovah”).
  • 28. When we realize that Matthew penned these verses about himself, we get a glimpse of his modesty and humility.
  • 29. Because of his modesty, Matthew does not mention the fact, but Luke tells us that the moment Jesus called him, Matthew "left everything behind, and rose and began to
  • 30. follow Him" (Luke 5:28). *That simple call by Jesus was more than enough reason for Matthew to turn his back on everything he was and possessed.
  • 31. Because of his position as an agent of Rome, he knew that once he forsook his post he would never be able to return to it. *He knew the cost and willingly paid it.
  • 32. Of all the disciples, Matthew doubtlessly made the greatest sacrifice of material possessions; yet he himself makes no mention of it.
  • 33. He lost a career but gained a destiny, lost his material possessions but gained a spiritual fortune, lost his temporal security but gained eternal life.
  • 34. In his own mind, the most important truth about the writer's former character is given in the words, “sitting in the tax office”.
  • 35. To Jews of his day, that single phrase established Matthew as the most despised, vile, and corrupt man in Capernaum.
  • 36. Matthew was a publicani (thus the title publican in some translations), a man who served occupying Rome against his own people as a collector of taxes.
  • 37. Publican
  • 38. *By the nature of his position, his first loyalty had to be to Rome. *Nationals of a country or province occupied by Rome could buy franchises that entitled
  • 39. them to levy certain taxes on the populace and on travelers.
  • 40. A franchise required collecting a specified amount of taxes for Rome and allowed anything collected beyond that figure to be kept as personal profit.
  • 41. Because his power of taxation was virtually unlimited and was enforced by the Roman military, the owner of a tax franchise in effect had a license for extortion.
  • 42. For those reasons the publicani were understandably considered traitors by their own people and were usually even more despised than Roman
  • 43. officials or soldiers. *Many tax collectors would accept bribes from the wealthy to reduce and falsify their taxes and would then exact proportionately more
  • 44. from the middle and lower classes, making themselves hated still more.
  • 45. They amassed great fortunes under the authority of the oppressor and at the expense of their own countrymen.
  • 46. A Jewish publicani was barred from the synagogue and was forbidden to have any religious or social contact with his fellow Jews.
  • 47. He was ranked with the unclean animals, which a devout Jew would not so much as touch.
  • 48. He was in the class of swine, and because he was held to be a traitor and a congenital liar, he was ranked with robbers and murderers and was forbidden to give
  • 49. testimony in any Jewish court.
  • 50. A certain type of tax collector was called a mokhes, who collected a wide variety of use taxes — taxes similar to our import duties, tollway fees, boat docking fees,
  • 51. business license fees, and the like. *The mokhes had almost unlimited latitude in their taxing powers and could attach a tax to virtually any article or activity.
  • 52. They could, for instance, levy a tax on a person's boat, on the fish he caught with it, and on the dock where he unloaded it.
  • 53. They had authority to open private letters to see if a taxable business of some sort might be related to the correspondence.
  • 54. There were two kinds of mokhes. *One kind, called the great mokhes, hired other men to collect taxes for them and, by virtue of partial anonymity, protected at
  • 55. least some of their reputation among their fellow countrymen. *The other kind, called small mokhes, did their own assessing and collecting and therefore
  • 56. were in constant contact with members of the community as well as with all travelers who passed their way. The gabbai were despised, the great mokhes were
  • 57. more despised, and the small mokhes were despised most.
  • 58. Matthew was obviously a small mokhes, because he himself was sitting in the tax office as Jesus passed through the outskirts of Capernaum.
  • 59. It was to Matthew, the most despised of the despicable, to whom Jesus said, Follow Me!
  • 60. Like many new converts, Matthew's first thought was to tell his friends about the Savior.
  • 61. He was so overwhelmed that he threw a banquet to present Jesus to his friends — all of whom, as tax-gatherers and sinners, were social and religious outcasts.
  • 62. We learn from Mark (2:15) and Luke (5:29) that the banquet was in Matthew's own house, another fact that he modestly omits in his own account.
  • 63. *This is the example that Matthew set for us of inviting our friends into our homes in order to meet Jesus. *The BGEA wants us to follow this in November.
  • 64. Go to: www.myhopewithbillygraham.org
  • 65. *Matthew: the tax collector *Come, Follow Me *Greek vs Hebrew Methods of Teaching
  • 66. Come, Follow Me
  • 67. Jesus talked about people following Him 23 times: 7 times in Matthew 4 times in Mark 5 times in Luke +7 times in John 23 times in all
  • 68. The Greek verb translated "follow" is often used in this sense of following like a disciple. The tense of the verb indicates that there must be a continual following.
  • 69. *The word "follower" in this verse literally means a mimic or an imitator. *In fact, the Greek word translated “follower” means mimic in English.
  • 70. May God’s Holy Spirit enable and empower all of us to imitate the life of our Lord Jesus Christ!
  • 71. *Matthew: the tax collector *Come, Follow Me *Greek vs Hebrew Methods of Teaching
  • 72. GREEK vs HEBREW METHODS OF TEACHING
  • 73. It is helpful to make some comparisons between Western (Greek) and Eastern (Hebrew) thinking in education.
  • 74. The object and aim of the Hebrew system was, “the knowledge of God”. The object and aim of the Greek system was, “know thyself”.
  • 75. *These two aims are poles apart. *The Hebrew system started with God; 7 “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge:” Prov 1:7 KJV
  • 76. The Hebrews taught that: Man can never know himself, unless he first learns of God and is submissive to His will.
  • 77. The Greek system, on the other hand, starts from the knowledge of man as he seeks to understand God through man’s higher nature.
  • 78. To the Jew, the ideal of holiness and separation was the key to knowing God.
  • 79. All education was directed to this end; be holy, be different, be set apart from the other heathen nations.
  • 80. In contrast, the Greek world did not understand education to be tied to a holiness of life.
  • 81. Teaching involved the transfer of knowledge in intellectual areas such as art, music, or athletics.
  • 82. *The Greek teacher aimed at developing the talent and potentials of his student. *In Greek society only the wealthy and leisure classes were educated.
  • 83. Our English words school and scholar come from the Greek word, ”Scholazo”, which means to have leisure, or to have spare time, or to have nothing to do.
  • 84. Conversely, Jewish education was for all people and concerned the whole person.
  • 85. In summary, the Greeks learned in order to comprehend, the Hebrews learned in order to revere.
  • 86. To a Jew, wisdom was what you did, not what you knew. It was action and behavior, not the nine points of theology.
  • 87. *Jesus took His disciples out into life to teach them how to act. *He demonstrated personally, and as they acted and reacted He taught them the truth.
  • 88. *It was not “to know”, but, “to experience”. *It is helpful to look at the Jewish educational system during the time of Jesus and see how that shaped His style of teaching and
  • 89. made Him a rabbi in the eyes of His constituents. Jesus was often called rabbi by His peers in the stories of the New Testament.
  • 90. In fact, the Gospels record that Jesus was called, ”Rabbi” on sixteen (16) different occasions. What was a rabbi and how did you become one?
  • 91. The word “Rabbi” means, “My Master” or literally “My Great One”.
  • 92. It came from the word “RAV” that means great or honored one and was used by slaves to their master or by a servant to his lord.
  • 93. The word “Ravi” means my master or my boss. One definition of the word “sin” is not letting God be the boss of my life.
  • 94. *The Jewish Educational System of Jesus’ Day *Jesus: A Jewish Rabbi and His Yoke *Follow in His Dust
  • 95. To understand how Jesus became a Rabbi, let’s look at the Jewish educational system of His day.
  • 96. *The heart of all Jewish education was the home. *The home was the center of learning. *Most of their education took place in the home.
  • 97. *Any other education was just an extension of the principles taught at home. *Although both parents shared in this task, the father bore the chief responsibility for the
  • 98. instruction of the children. The father was the main instrument in the learning process.
  • 99. The heart of Jewish education was a child seeing his family, especially the father, in action in life situations.
  • 100. The foundation for Jesus’ education would have definitely been His father, Joseph’s example – in addition to His heavenly Father.
  • 101. The father was responsible to teach his son Torah and to teach him a craft as well as almost everything else in life.
  • 102. When the child became old enough to attend a formal school setting, he went to the school that was attached to the local synagogue.
  • 103. There were three levels of school available to the students in Galilee of Jesus’ day: 1) Bet Sepher 2) Bet Talmud 3) Bet Midrash (Talmidim)
  • 104. 1) Bet Sepher - ages 6-10 House of the Book 2) Bet Talmud - ages 10-14 House of Learning 3) Bet Midrash -ages 15-30 House of Study Talmidim - disciple
  • 105. Psalm 119:103 KJV 103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
  • 106. The teacher of the Torah would say: “May the words of God be the most pleasurable, the most enjoyable thing you could ever comprehend.”
  • 107. The Hebrew children were introduced to the Scriptures as there was nothing more enjoyable in the entire universe than tasting, receiving , accepting the words of
  • 108. God and making them a part of their life. 10  “And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey:” Rev 10:10 KJV
  • 109. The best of the best from Bet Sepher went on to Bet Talmud and the best of the best of the House of Learning went on to Bet Midrash (House of Study) at age 15.
  • 110. *The Jewish Educational System of Jesus’ Day *Jesus: A Jewish Rabbi and His Yoke *Follow in His Dust
  • 111. In Jesus day, there were two different kinds of Rabbis: 1) Common rabbis 2) Rabbis with s’mekah
  • 112. For example, a common rabbi would say, “It is written”, or, “Rabbi so and so says”, but the Rabbi with s’mekah would say, “You’ve heard it said, but I say to you”.
  • 113. Look at Matthew 7:28-29. Jesus had just finished giving the Sermon on the Mount and the Bible says they were amazed at His teaching, because He taught as One Who had
  • 114. authority (s’mekah) and not as their regular Torah teachers.
  • 115. Yoke of learning
  • 116. The rabbis with s’mekah referred to their own unique collection of interpretations of Scripture as their “yoke” or yoke of learning.
  • 117. Jesus said: “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in
  • 118. heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 KJV
  • 119. Follow in His Dust
  • 120. When a rabbi was seeking new disciples, he would question bright fifteen year old men to determine their knowledge of the: Scriptures, the prophets,
  • 121. the sages and the law. Ultimately the rabbi would be seeking to answer just one question. That is....
  • 122. Can this potential disciple, really become just like me, or putting it another way, can this potential talmid become a mirror image of me?
  • 123. Breaking that down, the rabbi was trying to determine if one could: a) learn all of his teachings b) learn to think and act as he acted and
  • 124. c) could then spread his “yoke” to others.
  • 125. At the end of study at Beit Talmud, when a Jewish boy was 14 years old, if he thought that he was the best of the best, then he would present himself to a well-known respected,
  • 126. powerful rabbi (the highest position in Jewish society). He would say, “Rabbi, I want to become your disciple, your talmudim, your student.”
  • 127. So the rabbi would then examine the young man and ask lots of questions, to find out if indeed this child was the best of the best (one of the "Harvard boys").
  • 128. Each rabbi wanted to teach his thinking, his interpretation of Scripture and his philosophy – what became known as his “yoke”.
  • 129. If the rabbi believed that the student was not the best of the best, that he was not able to become a rabbi, he would say, “Ah, my son, you do know Torah.
  • 130. And you know Torah well. But you are not able to be my talmudeen, my disciple, my student. Go, home to your village. Make babies. Pray that they become rabbis.
  • 131. Go home and learn the family business - fishing, farming, carpentry. Because you won’t be studying to be a rabbi.”
  • 132. A rabbi wasn’t going to spend his valuable time training someone that he didn’t think could be successful.
  • 133. But for those who were the best of the best Jewish boys the rabbi would say, “Lech Acharai – Come, follow me.”
  • 134. For a young Jewish man to hear, “Come, follow me”, was the highest of honors for that young man and for his parents.
  • 135. The boy would then leave his family, his family compound, his village. He would leave the local synagogue. He would leave everything and follow that rabbi.
  • 136. He would become a talmudim, a disciple, a student. He would devote his life to becoming exactly like that rabbi. He would follow him everywhere.
  • 137. The disciple would desire to emulate the rabbi even in all of his mannerisms. He would eat the same food in exactly the same way as his rabbi.
  • 138. The disciple wanted to be so much like his rabbi that when the rabbi would pick up a piece of straw and put it in his mouth then the talmudeen would mimic him.
  • 139. He would go to sleep and awake the same way as his rabbi and, more importantly, he would learn to study Torah and understand God the exact same way as his rabbi.
  • 140. It would be said to such a student - “May you be covered in the dust of your rabbi.” The disciples would follow their rabbi so closely that they would
  • 141. become covered with the dust of their rabbi. A common blessing of Jesus' day was: “May you follow him so closely that the dust of his sandals covers you.”
  • 142. Are we walking so closely with Jesus, that we’re covered in His dust?
  • 143. In calling the twelve, Jesus was calling those who apparently weren’t viewed as rabbinical candidates and instead were back working in the business and economic
  • 144. world. Bluntly, it would appear that Jesus was settling for the rejects, those that the other rabbis had already turned down.
  • 145. If you were a rabbi looking for men to become part of the current religious system of that time, these men were definitely not your first choices.
  • 146. If you were looking through human eyes and considering natural abilities, they didn’t measure up.
  • 147. But Jesus didn’t do that. He called disciples who had already failed the rabbi test. He said, “Lech Acharai – Come, follow Me”.
  • 148. “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me.” Why did Jesus choose these guys?  Because He believed they could become like Him!
  • 149. And you know what? Jesus wants to be your Rabbi. He wants to be your Teacher, your Master. He wants you to be His disciple, His student,
  • 150. His talmudeen. He is calling you today,“Lech Acharai – Come, follow Me.” It doesn’t matter who you are. It doesn’t matter where you are. It doesn’t
  • 151. matter what company you work for. The most important thing is not how much you can memorize. It’s not about how much you know.
  • 152. It’s all about Who you follow. You can be just like the Rabbi! He believes that, do you?
  • 153. The Holy Spirit!
  • 154. *But Jesus wasn’t making His choice based on natural human reasoning. *He wasn’t making His decision based upon the natural abilities of any of those men.
  • 155. *His choices were made using much different criteria. *He saw the potential that exists within anyone who would allow His Holy Spirit to live through them.
  • 156. *He knew that Who was inside Him could be inside those men as well. *Jesus knew that God, the Father dwelt not only in Him but could dwell in those men as well.
  • 157. *They just needed to realize it themselves. *He knew that all things are possible when a person allows God’s Holy Spirit to indwell them.
  • 158. *Jesus also knew that He wasn’t looking for men to be part of the religious system of that time.
  • 159. God, through Jesus, was looking for men to rise up and challenge the religious and political system of that day (and our day as well).
  • 160. Perhaps, we ought to consider the possibility that He wants to do the same thing through us today.
  • 161. The real Gospel is the Good News that God totally accepts you, just as you are. God loves you as you are, not as you ought to be!
  • 162. The Gospel is that God truly does love all of us unconditionally and wants every single person to prosper in body, soul and spirit.
  • 163. If you want to know how God would think and act as a human being, Jesus says, “Look at Me!”
  • 164. As amazing as that statement may be, it is even more amazing that He says the same thing about His disciples and in fact He is saying that within every follower
  • 165. is the potential for the words, “If you have seen me, you have seen Jesus” to be true.
  • 166. God, through Jesus, is telling us that He is absolutely confident that we can bear His image and He is also confident that we can go out and change the world as the
  • 167. disciples did so powerfully in the first century. The entire rabbinical system was based upon the rabbi having faith in his disciples. 
  • 168. A rabbi would only pick a disciple who he thought could actually do what he was doing.
  • 169. Notice how many places in the accounts of Jesus’ life that He showed concern about His disciples not living up to their potential.
  • 170. Was He concerned because they were incapable? No, but because they were capable of doing much more!
  • 171. He saw what they could have been and could have done, and when they fell short, it brought about His displeasure.
  • 172. It isn’t their failure that was the problem; it was their greatness.  They didn’t realize what they were capable of.
  • 173. So at the end of His time with His disciples, Jesus had some final words for them. He told them to go to the ends of the earth and make more disciples.
  • 174. And then He left. He promised to send His Spirit to guide them and give them power, but Jesus Himself left the future of the Gospel in their hands.
  • 175. And He didn’t stick around to make sure they didn’t mess it up. He left! And He trusted that they could actually turn the world upside down.
  • 176. God has an extremely high view of Spirit-filled people. God believes that Spirit- filled people are capable of amazing things.
  • 177. Yes, we need to believe in Jesus but we also need to realize that Jesus believes in us. The Rabbi knows that we can be like Him!
  • 178. Isn’t that an amazing thing – that according to Jesus we will be like Him?
  • 179. PBPGINFWMY
  • 180. God is not finished with us yet, but His work will not cease until He has made us into the perfect likeness of His Son (1 John 3:2).
  • 181. 1 John 3:2 KJV 2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall
  • 182. appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. 1 John 3:2 KJV
  • 183. The apostle Paul tells us in Philippians 1:6 that when God begins a good work, He will bring it to pass.
  • 184. Philippians 1:6 KJV 6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
  • 185. The story is told of the rowdy, disruptive young boy in a Sunday school class who continually frustrated his teacher.
  • 186. One morning the teacher asked him, "Why do you act like that? Don't you know Who made you?" To which the boy replied, "God did, but He ain't through with me yet."
  • 187. All of us are still imperfect, uncut diamonds in the rough being finished by the divine Master Craftsman. PBPGINFWMY
  • 188. PBPGINFWMY Please Be Patient, God Is Not Finished With Me Yet
  • 189. You are God’s Masterpiece
  • 190. *In Ephesians 2:10, the passage that we studied two weeks ago, Paul says we are the workmanship of God, God’s poem! *God is not finish writing all of His poetry yet!
  • 191. Allow Him to write the rest of your story. The Gospel According to You?
  • 192. 10 For we are his (poiema) workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10 KJV
  • 193. …“created in Christ Jesus unto good works” for God’s glory! WHAT’S THE #1 THING?
  • 194. BRING GLORY TO GOD!
  • 195. 15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: 1 Ptr 3