In John's Gospel, we met Jesus the Son of God. In Luke's Gospel, we meet Jesus the Son of Man. In Mark's Gospel, we meet Jesus the suffering Servant. And with Matthew we embark on our Gospel-journey to meet Jesus: the Sovereign King.
Matthew begins by leading us down royal lines of our King's lineage.
From His birth He began threatening other earthly kings.
Futile efforts to find & kill Him were thwarted by wise men & magi. Upon finding their infant King, they fell and worshipped with royal gifts from the east.
In time, John the Baptist would join the herald of heavenly hosts, proclaiming the King & His Kingdom at hand!
Satan affirmed Jesus' reign by his efforts to tempt Him to a Kingdom exchange.
The sermons of the Sovereign One would also convince on-listeners of His heavenly descent: "He speaks as one with authority, not like our scribes & Pharisees."
During His crucifixion trial He made His own declaration: "My Kingdom is not of this world." Heaven's King came to reign upon the earth. The Cross would be the means by which He would conquer, a stumbling block for the proud, but grace to the humble.
Shaking off death like dust, Jesus proved His dominion over hell when He arose from the grave.
And ultimately, Matthew's final words record his Messiah's pronouncement: "All authority in heaven & earth has been given to Me."
Despite great lengths that Matthew went to in order to convince us of Christ the King, he faithfully & painfully focuses also upon the Messiah's rejection by His own people. Like no other Gospel, Matthew depicts the hostility of the religious leaders who refused their King. Of Himself He said, 'Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.'
But Matthew also includes chapter 24 wherein we learn of the Son of Man's second coming at an unexpected hour, full of glory, judgement & power. Will the bride be ready?
No other Gospel provides more instruction, direction and power for faithful followers commissioned to represent Christ the King throughout the earth.
He Is Going Before You
What would the Good News be without the Resurrection of Christ?
But what makes the Resurrection such Good News is what the resurrected Christ saves us from: our sin! We value our Savior according to how much we realize He has saved us from. He who has been forgiven much, loves much. He who thinks he only needs to be forgiven little, will in turn make very little of the one that saves him from little.
What's the point? We have a great risen-Savior!
Just us today at His graveside service on that glorious Sunday morning.
28 Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. 2 And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3 His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. 4 And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. 5 But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. 6 He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. 7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” 8 So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9 And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”
life application questions
blue = leaders only
living on mission: Do you know anyone frightened by the world today? Discouraged and hiding like the apostles before they had actual knowledge of the resurrected Jesus?
Is there anything we can do to support you in your evangelical efforts? prayer, resources, teaching?
sharing life together: Were you ever like an apostle, pre resurrection? Hearing but not understanding? Do you still have questions you need answered?
growing in truth: What’s the point of the passage? Jesus was dead but now is alive.
Disciples of Jesus will joyfully tell others of Jesus’s resurrection.
Why did the angel open the tomb? It was important to prove that the tomb was empty. The empty tomb is the starting place for any believer or skeptic. Anyone at that time could see for them selves the empty tomb.
Why do you think the women went to “see” The tomb? To “finalize” the life of Jesus. To “see” for sure the place where Jesus their hope was entombed.
What did the women physically “see”. An empty tomb, a white lightening angel, a heavy stone moved, frightened guards.
What did the women spiritually “see”? Joy, Jesus the promised messiah lives. A new beginning. The new covenant. Hope.
Why don’t people believe Jesus rose from the dead? The are blind to the evidence. They argue that the Bible is written by man and is flawed. Graveyards are full of the un risen Jesus, cant be the exception. Science is truth, faith is for the weak.
What evidence is there that Jesus rose? The tomb was empty. His tomb had been closed with a large heavy stone impossible to move with out help. The tomb was sealed. The tomb was guarded by Roman soldiers. The Romans and Jews wanted an end of Jesus, and so had no motive to move his body. The disciples were hiding in despair and even if inclined to steel the body they were unlikely to overcome the Roman guards. The grave clothes were there but not the body. There were many eye witnesses. Once the disciples understood Jesus had risen they began to proclaim the resurrected Jesus as the messiah even though they were persecuted and killed. People other than the disciples were able to examine the evidence and they believed and they followed.
Pastor, Paige suggested most people like the gospel but, they know only a partial gospel. Culturally how is the gospel understood today? God is love. Merciful and forgiving.
What’s missing. Man by nature is broken. Given every opportunity to live right we sin. Sin, separates man from God. We are with out hope to ever be good enough “holy”. Un repented sin proves that a man love sin and not Jesus as Lord. We need a supernatural rescuer.
If Jesus is not raised what does that mean? 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.
18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
19 If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied. (1 Corinthians 15:17, ESV)