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Learning the Gospel from Matthew (Sermon 5)

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Matthew calls John the Baptist as a witness
Matthew 3:1–6 AV
1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, 2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. 3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. 4 And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey. 5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan, 6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
Matthew skips over almost 30 yrs
Who is John the Baptist
Matthew is currently presenting Jesus as the Messiah-King of Israel
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Custom required the arrival of a king into a city, town, etc. . . to be preceded by a herald!
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The herald was responsible for:
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Announcing
Announcing
Preparing
&
Heralds represented the kings they served
Preparing
Heralds reflected the kings they served
Consider John as introduced by Matthew
Matthew 3:1 AV
1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
The word came carries the idea of arrived, or suddenly come on the scene
The word came carries the idea of arrived, or suddenly come on the scene
Wilderness
Matthew reminds his readers that John did not come to Jerusalem, which was the religious capital of Israel
Matthew reminds his readers that John did not come to Jerusalem, which was the religious capital of Israel
Instead John remained in the wilderness of Judaea, and those who heard him had to come away from the established religious authority
Instead John remained in the wilderness of Judaea, and those who heard him had to come away from the established religious authority
Instead John remained in the wilderness of Judaea, and those who heard him had to come away from the established religious authority
Matthew allows his audience to see how John represents and reflects Jesus and His ministry.
Matthew allows his audience to see how John represents and reflects Jesus and His ministry.
Like John, Jesus wold draw His followers away from erring religion and back to genuine relationship with God.
Like John, Jesus wold draw His followers away from erring religion and back to genuine relationship with God.
Matthew 3:2 AV
2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
mt 3:
Matthew keys in on Johns message to repent
Repent is a change of mind that results in a change of action or behavior
John was calling on Israel to change their mind about themselves and self-righteousness
Calling on the nation to repent was Johns role in preparing them to receive their king (Jesus the Christ)
Matthew 3:3 AV
3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
Once again Matthew points to fulfilled prophecy as supporting evidence that Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ
Matthew is making a reference to
Isaiah 40:3–4 AV
3 The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. 4 Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain:
Johns Description
Matthew 3:4 AV
4 And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.
mt 3;4
Bible students often see in John the likeness of the prophet Elijah
Another aspect of John’s appearance is role of a herald which is the represent and reflect the king he serves
John lived in the wilderness, and ate the diet of the poor; Jesus would have not home, and be associate with the poor.
Matthew 3:5 AV
5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
Matthew does not present John as one chasing the people around to make converts; instead the people came away from Jerusalem unto him.
Matthew 3:6 AV
6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
Matthew now makes his readers acknowledge that many Jews had recognized the need to repent and prepare for the kingdom of God.
Conclusion
By calling on John as witness, Matthew removes another objection from his readers that Jesus Christ of Nazareth could be and must be the Messiah-King
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