Matthew introduces the long-awaited King bringing to earth, His Kingdom, with its multiple dimensions. This Kingdom so contrary to the typical ones, requires the Spirit’s insight to even begin to understand.
- Introduction – God’s Kingdom on Earth
- Descent of the King
- The King’s Herald
- Kingdom Warfare
- Kingdom Values
- Kingdom People (Disciples)
- Keys to the Kingdom
- The King Returns
- The King Redeems
- The King Conquers
- The King Commissions
New Testament Timeline
Introduction – Kingdom of Heaven
The Kingdom of heaven belongs to:
- The poor in spirit (5:3)
- Those who are persecuted for Christ’s sake (5:10)
- Those with faith as a child (18:1-10)
Who work towards completely eliminating sin
Introduction – Kingdom of Heaven
The Kingdom of heaven is not experiencing on earth:
- Freedom from sickness
- Unlimited powers
- Mystic experiences
- Blessings for the sinner
Without dealing with the sin.
Descent of the King
- The wise men knew
- King Herod knew
- A few shepherds and good men and women knew…
That Jesus was the Messiah
Matthew 2:9 When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.
What was this star? How did the Magi find it? What about the rest of the Jewish race? Isa 6:10
Descent of the King
The Magi must have known the prophesy (written in king’s courts) – “The star shall come out of Jacob; A Scepter shall rise out of Israel, “. (Numbers 24:17) – This “star” and “sceptre” actually refers to Jesus. Or they could have referred to Daniel (a well respected former Magi)’s prophecy in Daniel 2.
Another pointer – “The scepter shall not depart from Judah..until Shiloh comes, and to him shall be the obedience of the people”. (Genesis 49:10)
The Magi were plural (number not known) with 3 types of gifts
They saw the star at birth. It emerged again in Jerusalem and led them to the house of Jesus.
This journey was probably several months (given the age of 2 years and below – of Herod’s massacre) (Matt 1,2)
The “star” must have been God’s presence (like pillar of fire and smoke)
The King’s Herald – John the Baptist Matthew
- Bare minimal food
- Bare clothing
- A “voice” in the wilderness
- One purpose of heralding Christ
- Died a martyr’s death
- Applauded by Christ as “greater than Elijah
Made himself small so that Christ could stand tall
The Kingdom People
Read Matthew chapters 8:18-22,12:46-50,13
What are the requirements of a disciple?
Disciples are prepared to:
- Sacrifice comforts
- Sacrifice family priorities
- Do God’s will
- Have a receptive heart
- Value the kingdom over everything
- Focus on Christ
Kingdom Warfare -Temptations
The battle rages on between the two kingdoms (eg. Matt 4:1-11) :
- ◦In the world – external
- In our lives – internal battle
Kingdom Warfare – False Prophets
- For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. Matthew 24:24
- “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. Matthew 7:15
- For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. Matthew 24:5
False prophets camoflouge Satan’s kingdom to appear like God’s kingdom
Kingdom happiness is referred to as “blessedness” or happiness of soul.
- the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
- those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
- the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
- those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
- the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
- the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Kingdom Values (Cont’d..)
- the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
- those who are persecuted for righteousness‘ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
- you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Kingdom Values – Matt 5-18
|Kingdom of Heaven||Kingdom of Satan|
|Invisible but penetrating – 5:13-16||Measured on externals|
|Based on whole bible –5: 17-20||“cool ride”|
|Internal attitude not external action – 6-10||External façade|
|Treasures – lasting and eternal -13:45-47||Money, status, indulgence – Now|
|Needs will be provided – 6:25,26||Insatiable cravings|
|Revealed by God – 16:17||Deceived by man|
|Small is great – 18:1-4||Seek popularity and greatness|
- How can we avoid missing God’s guiding clues in our life, as Israelites missed their much awaited Messiah?
- In what way/s can we make ourselves small so that Christ can stand tall?
- Look at the chart on Kingdom values vs. Satan’s values. Do we see penetration of the Satan’s values in our churches today? What can we do about that in our personal lives? In our churches?
Keys to the Kingdom
Christ endows his disciples particularly the twelve apostles special powers in heaven and earth.
Read Matt 16:13-20
Conditions to having these privilages are:
- Acknowledging Christ as God
- Being receptive to Holy Spirit
The King Returns – Matthew 24
The signs of the end are a combination of:
- Wars between nations
- Famines, Earthquakes
- Christians hated and killed
- Gospel reaches world
- False prophets
- Sin rampant
- Abomination of desolation set up in holy place.
- Sun, moon darkened, stars fall, powers of heaven shaken
- Second coming visible to all amidst mighty trumpet blast
The King Redeems –Matthew 26,27
- What was Christ’s blood shed for?
- How is Christ’s work of salvation misinterpreted today?
The King Conquers – Matthew 28
Some unusual aspects surrounding Christ’s resurrection were:
- Tombstone rolled away
- Guards shook with fear
- Angel tells Mary to meet Jesus in Galilee
- Jesus meets disciples
- Religious leaders bribe guards to falsify story
The King Commissions-Matthew 28
Jesus’ last words:
- I have all power on heaven and earth
- Go to all the world
- Make disciples
- Teach ALL my commands
- I am with you always (Matthew 28:18-20)
Discussion, Video Clip
In what way are you personally implementing the great commission?