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Matthewsession4 Matthewsession4 Presentation Transcript

  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew Matthew 9:1- 16:20
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Matthew 8 and 9 is a collection of miracle stories
    • Chapter 10 contains the second block of teaching material found in Matthew. The subject of this block of material is the mission to which Christ commissions his disciples.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Three major motifs are intertwined through the collection of nine (or ten) miracles found in Matthew 8 and 9
    • The first motif is that of Jesus' power and authority
    • The second motif of this section is people's response to Jesus and his ministry
    • The final motif in chapters 8 and 9 is discipleship.
    View slide
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Healing the Paralytic - Matthew 9:1-8
    • Matthew's chief purpose in recounting this miracle is the question of Jesus' authority to forgive sins.
    • Modern people often separate spiritual and physical needs so that we see no connection between healing and the forgiveness of sins. First century Judaism would have assumed some connection
    View slide
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • For healing to take place, one had to find out what the sin was and to try to make atonement for it
    • Objection came when Jesus himself pronounced forgiveness of the man's sins.
    • Verse 4 continues the emphasis on Jesus' authority
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Not only does he claim the right to forgive sins, but he also sees and knows the intentions of people's heart
    • 'Rise and walk ," recognizes the intimate connection between spiritual and physical health. The point is that neither is difficult to say but only God can actually forgive sins and heal a paralyzed body
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Call of Matthew - Matthew 9:9-13
    • Matthew was a tax-collector in Capernaum.
    • He would have been what we call a customs officer concerned with collecting import and/or export taxes on trade goods
    • They saw such taxes as Roman robbery of money that rightfully belonged to them
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • This hatred increased when the tax-collector himself was a Jew as Matthew was
    • The invitation to discipleship includes implicitly the offer of forgiveness of sins
    • In Jewish culture of that time eating with another person was to enter into a covenant of friendship with them.
    • To eat with sinners meant accepting them as they were.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • For Jesus, eating with sinners became a way of offering forgiveness and grace to them.
    • Verse 13 issues a stern challenge to the Pharisees to learn to read the Scriptures correctly.
    • "Go, think more deeply, study and meditate until you arrive at the true meaning."
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Pharisees viewed holiness in terms of separation from sin by separation from sinners and avoidance of things that could defile them
    • For Jesus, holiness was mercy, grace, and love that did not evaluate people's worth on the basis of their past actions.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Issue of Fasting - Matthew 9:14-17
    • Fasting was one of the hallmarks of Judaism in the ancient world.
    • Jews usually saw fasting as an act of penance or mourning
    • Jesus' response clearly "fits" the context of these chapters in Matthew. Given the Jewish view of fasting, it was quite inappropriate when the bridegroom , Jesus, was present. They did not need to fast to be forgiven of sins. Jesus freely forgave sinners without their even asking
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The old garment and old wineskins of the Pharisees' religious traditionalism could not contain the new patch and new wine of Jesus' teaching.
    • Jesus anticipated the rise of a new structure (the church) to "contain" the new wine of his teaching.
    • The ever-present danger of the church now is that we become old wineskins, inflexible and incapable of stretching
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • More Healings - Matthew 9:18-34
    • The third set of miracles in Matthew 8 and 9 is found in 9:18-34
    • The theme in this section is faith.
    • The first story, combines the raising of the ruler's daughter from the dead and the healing of the woman with a flow of blood
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Matthew's story is that Jesus is seen to have the power to discern the woman's thought and needs no information to understand what had happened
    • The healing of two blind men
    • The appeal of these two blind men is for mercy
    • The final healing miracle in Matthew 8 and 9 is the healing of the mute man described in 9:32-34
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Conclusion and Transition - Matthew 9:35-38
    • Summary of Jesus' ministry
    • Jesus' motivation in healing as compassion .
    • The section ends with Jesus' command to pray that God would raise up workers for the harvesting of people's lives.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Teaching on Mission - Matthew 10
    • Chapter 10 begins by describing the answer to that prayer - the twelve disciples named and given authority to cast out demons and heal diseases
    • There are four key points in verses 1-4 -commissioned to ministry; ministry of the disciples was to be virtually identical to that of Jesus;the twelve represented the creation of new Israel; ministry is for the renewal and restoration of Israel
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Verses 5-15 provide specific instructions for this mission
    • First, the shepherding ministry of the disciples will be patterned after the shepherding ministry of Jesus
    • Second, the disciples are commissioned to do exactly as Jesus has done
    • Finally, the disciples are told to seek out worthy hosts in whatever town or village they enter
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Matt 10:16-39 – Facing Persecution
    • This section is composed of five sections -be prepared for persecution; persecution of disciples is part of the pattern that began with opposition to Jesus;courage in the face of fear when persecution comes; division that discipleship demands.
    • The call of God on a person’s life must have priority above every other allegiance
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Matthew 10:40-11:1 - Conclusion: Receiving Christ’s Servants
    • The final section of the mission discourse in Matthew 10 speaks of the ways followers of Christ may be "received" in positive ways
    • Furthermore, whatever reward there is for discipleship, it is shared by those who give positive reception to the gospel. If you are called to witness as a prophet those who accept your message share in your prophetic reward
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Matthew 11:2-12:50 - Rising Opposition
    • Matthew has brought variety of materials together because they support a common theme, that of unbelief or opposition to Jesus and his ministry
    • The first collection is built around the questions of John the Baptist
    • The second collection of material emphasis the opposition of the Pharisees
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Matthew 11:2-24 - Doubts and Dissatisfaction
    • This expression of doubt comes from John the Baptist
    • It is instructive that Jesus did not voice any criticism of John.
    • He understood the reason for John’s doubts. John had apparently hoped for a militaristic messiah
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Without claiming to be the Messiah and being tagged with any of the various portraits that Jews painted of the Messiah, Jesus pointed to the Scriptures that explained what he was doing in messianic terms.
    • Instead of criticizing and instead of directly arguing, he amassed the needed evidence for John to draw his own conclusions and then allowed him to do so
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • His comments were designed to cause the listeners to examine their own motivation for being interested in John’s ministry
    • However, Jesus (and Matthew) wants his audience to understand that John was more than just any prophet
    • The very ministry of John the Baptist as forerunner affirmed the messiahship of Jesus
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The resistance of the Jews to making a kingdom choice is illustrated in verses 16-19. They found John’s demands too hard and Jesus’ grace too embracing of sinners. They decided it was easier to complain about the messengers than to respond in obedience to the message
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Matthew 11:20-12:42
    • Matthew 11:2-12:50 - Rising Opposition
    • Third major narrative section of the first gospel.
    • The theme of this section is doubt , indifference , and dissent .
    • The cities in which he had done the majority of his miracles had not repented
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The cities of Chorazin and Bethsaida are mentioned first
    • The word " woe " that Jesus pronounced over these cities was an exclamation of grief
    • Jesus then turned his attention to Capernaum
    • Capernaum was the place where God most directly revealed himself in the miracles of Christ. For the inhabitants of Capernaum to refuse to repent was the equivalent of setting themselves up as equals and rivals of God.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • A logical question (and one that is often asked) is how people who received such direct revelation from Christ as Capernaum did could "not repent" and end up rejecting Christ.
    • However, it seems better to take this statement as ironic rather than literal
    • Matthew 11:28-30 contain one of the most gracious invitations to Christ that can be found in the gospels. The invitation is directed to those who labor and are burdened down
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Perhaps the key word in this invitation is the word " yoke ." This word was used in Judaism in a figurative way to signify submission, discipline, duty, and obedience. However, it also spoke of freedom and life.
    • To become a student of the oral law was to take upon oneself the "yoke of the Torah
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Verse 30 states that this Christian yoke is easy
    • Conflict with Judaism - Matthew 12:1-45
    • The unifying theme in chapter 12 is conflict with Judaism
    • Matthew’s readers would have naturally contrasted the gentle or "easy" yoke of Jesus mentioned in chapter 11 with the "yoke of the Torah" that the Pharisees insisted upon. That contrast now appears in a specific example in Matthew 12:1-8,
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • For Matthew there are two issues at stake in this passage.
    • The first is difference in views of the appropriate way to keep the Sabbath
    • The second issue of critical importance in this passage is the right of Jesus to introduce a new Sabbath interpretation
    • Jesus’ reply to the criticism of the Pharisees has four segments that may be thought of as four arguments against the "yoke" of the Pharisees
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Matthew 12:15-21 contains Matthew’s conclusion to the Sabbath controversy stories
    • These verses contain the longest quotation from the Old Testament to be found in the first gospel.
    • The next major section in Matthew 12 is verses 22-37 in which Jesus is accused of performing his healings by the power of Satan and in which he responds to that charge.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The reality of Jesus’ power and of the miracle itself could not be questioned. The only recourse for the Pharisees was to question the source of Jesus’ power
    • The accusation is patently foolish as Jesus proceeds to demonstrate.
    • The uniqueness of Jesus’ ministry is that it demonstrates the power of the Spirit of God at work in the world.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Verses 31-32 deal with blasphemy against the [Holy] Spirit and the unforgivable sin.
    • The next evidence of conflict with Judaism comes with the demand by the scribes and Pharisees for a sign from Jesus.
    • He responded by pointing to Jonah and the "sign" of Jonah’s three day and night residence in the whale’s belly. No other sign will be given the Jews of Jesus’ day.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Matthew 11:2-12:50 - Rising Opposition
    • The themes of these chapters are doubt , indifference , and disagreement .
    • Teaching in Parables - Matthew 13:1-52
    • The third major collection of teaching materials in the first gospel.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The first was the Sermon on the Mount found in Matthew 5-7. The second was the Missions discourse of Matthew 10. This third collection of Jesus' teaching is primarily composed of parables, interpretations of parables, and a discussion of the purpose of Jesus' use of parables.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Jesus and the gospel writers seemed to operate with a Hebrew concept of parables.
    • The Hebrew word for parable is mishal and it was used of many kinds of sayings, from proverbs to illustrations to word plays to allegories. Similitudes, illustrations, examples, proper parables, and allegories are all structured differently and have slightly different functions in the Scriptures
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Parable of the Sower - Matthew 13:1-9
    • But followers of Christ are not to fear the rejection of his message. For those who accept it the results will be beyond human imagination.
    • The Purpose of Parables - Matthew 13:10-17 To those who open their hearts and apply their minds the parable are like a shell that opens to reveal amazingly beautiful truths.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Interpretation of the Parable of the Sower - Matthew 13:18-23
    • The interpretation of the parable of the sower found in Matthew 13: 18-23 has some allegorical elements.
    • Each soil is compared to a human circumstance reflecting rejection or receptivity to the gospel.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Parable of the Weeds - Matthew 13:24-30
    • The parable of the weeds appears only in Matthew's gospel
    • The parable of the weeds seems to fit Matthew's more realistic tastes and it also allows Jesus to address a real problem in Matthew's church.
    • The parable is thus governed early on by the allegorical idea of Satan as the spiritual enemy of the church
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The main point is that the Kingdom (and for Matthew - the church) will have both good (wheat) and evil (weeds) people in it
    • The allegory also acknowledges that human efforts to uproot the sinners and throw them out of the church will cause more harm than good.
    • The church will have to live with the ambiguity of a mixture of good and sinful people in her midst.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Parables of the Mustard Seed and Leaven - Matthew 13:31-33
    • The two brief parables of the mustard seed and leaven are technically described as similitudes.
    • A similitude offers a comparison between the kingdom and a general truth or reality.
    • The similitude "works" by inviting the listener to accept the comparison in order to see the application
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The application is clear. The Kingdom may begin in a small way, but its final result will be large
    • The disciples were tempted to see doubt and rejection as somehow invalidating Jesus' preaching of the Kingdom.
    • The seeming weakness and smallness of the Kingdom is preliminary. Wait until the final results are in.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Teaching in Parables – Matt. 13:1-52
    • Matthew 13 contains seven or eight parables, depending on whether or not one considers verse 52 a parable.
    • The first section deals with the parable of the sower and is contained in verses 1-23.
    • The second section is marked by the parable of the weeds in verses 24-30 and its interpretation in verses 36-43.
    • The third section consists of verses 44-52 with the parables of the treasure, the pearl, and the net.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Parable of the Sower - Matthew 13:1-9
    • The "unrealistic" point of this parable comes at the size of the crop.
    • A good crop in Palestine was considered to be ten fold. Jesus' description of the harvest as one hundred, sixty, and thirty fold was bound to shock the listeners. "No way!“
    • If the point is the kingdom of God, Jesus was proclaiming that though not everybody would accept the gospel message, for those who did the results would be spectacular in their lives.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Thus the doubt of John the Baptist in Matthew 11 and the rejection of Jesus by Pharisees in chapter 12 are like seed falling on the path and on rocky soil
    • Followers of Christ are not to fear the rejection of his message. For those who accept it the results will be beyond human imagination
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Purpose of Parables – Matt. 13:10-17
    • These have been extremely difficult verses for the modem Western mind to understand.
    • Matthew begins by placing the question of the reason for Jesus' use of parables on the lips of the disciples
    • Jesus' reply begins by indicating that parables allowed insiders (disciples) to understand, but prevented outsiders from discovering the secrets of the kingdom
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • To those who open their hearts and apply their minds the parable are like a shell that opens to reveal amazingly beautiful truths. But those who make no effort to understand or to be open find only a shell locked tightly shut
    • This section on the purpose of the parables explains why some have rejected Jesus and by means of it Matthew warns us as readers of the effort and openness that is required if we are to enter the Kingdom.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Interpretation of the Parable of the Sower – Matt. 13:18-23
    • The interpretation has some allegorical elements
    • The seed is compared to the message about the Kingdom of God and each soil is compared to a human circumstance reflecting rejection or receptivity to the gospel
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Parable of the Weeds – Matt. 13:24-30
    • The parable of the weeds appears only in Matthew's gospel
    • The parable of the weeds seems to fit Matthew's more realistic tastes and it also allows Jesus to address a real problem in Matthew's church.
    • The main point is that the Kingdom (and for Matthew - the church) will have both good (wheat) and evil (weeds) people in it The church will have to live with the ambiguity
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Parables of the Mustard Seed and Leaven - Matthew 13:31-33
    • The two brief parables of the mustard seed and leaven are technically described as similitudes
    • a similitude offers a comparison between the kingdom and a general truth or reality
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • In verse 31 the kingdom of heaven is not like a certain mustard seed. It is like every mustard seed.
    • The listener responds, "Okay, how?"
    • Jesus then makes the point -The similitude "works" because a mustard seed is never large - it is always small. And the final product is always a large bush, never a small one.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The Kingdom may begin in a small way, but its final result will be large
    • The seeming weakness and smallness of the Kingdom is preliminary. Wait until the final results are in. Then you will see the greatness of the Kingdom
    • In a similar fashion the similitude of the leaven points out that the Kingdom does not appear to be doing anything. However, that leaven is working a growth that only later will be visible.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Parables of the Kingdom: Matt 13:44-52
    • Like the parables of the mustard seed and the leaven, those of the treasure and pearl form a pair
    • Both sets of the parable pairs share the themes of hiddenness and smallness .
    • Burying a treasure in the ground was common in the biblical
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The point of the parable is not to tell us what to do when we find treasures hidden in a field
    • The parable uses what any person in the ancient world would have done to illustrate how we should respond to the discovery of the kingdom of God
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • In the ancient world, if a treasure was found in a field the finder would re-bury it and immediately take whatever steps would be necessary to buy the field. Any price would be worth paying in order to own the field and thus obtain the treasure.
    • In a similar fashion, it is worth any price to become a part of the kingdom of God.
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The parable of the pearl makes a similar point
    • There is some evidence that pearls were even valued more highly than gold .
    • Some scholars regard this detail as exaggeration in order to show how valuable the kingdom is.
    • Another point of comparison is the fact that both the hidden treasure and the pearl (because of its small size) could easily be missed
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • The parable of the net, found in verses 47-50, moves in another direction .
    • The Greek word for the net describes a seine-net that would have had floats on one edge (the top) and weights on the other. It was designed to sweep through a section of water and collect all the fish bigger than the net grid
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Obviously, it would take in every kind of fish without regard to their value
    • Once again, the point is that the kingdom (and the church) will collect less than desirable characters along with the good. However, the separation must await the final judgment
    • This parable highlights the fact that the kingdom and the church belong to God
  • Intro to the Gospel of Matthew
    • Verses 51-53 conclude this teaching section on parables that constituted most of Matthew 13. The question, " Have you understood all these things ?" is directed both the disciples as Jesus’ original audience and to the readers who are Matthew’s audience.
    • The life of discipleship should equip us to recognize the complex relationship between new and old in the kingdom