Week #118; Wed, Apr 01: Micha 7–Nahum–Habakkuk–Zephaniah

Week #118; Wed, Apr 01: Micha 7:1–Nahum–Habakkuk–Zephaniah 3:20

CHAPTER OBSERVATIONS:

Micha 7, Wait for the God of Salvation

I. KEY TEXT: “Woe is me! For I have become as when the summer fruit has been gathered, as when the grapes have been gleaned: there is no cluster to eat, no first-ripe fig that my soul desires. The godly has perished from the earth and there is no one upright among mankind; they all lie in wait for blood, and each hunts the other with a net. Their hands are on what is evil, to do it well; the prince and the judge ask for a bribe, and the great man utters the evil desire of his soul; thus they weave it together. The best of them is like a brier, the most upright a thorn hedge. The day of your watchmen, of your punishment, has come; now their confusion is at hand. Put no trust in a neighbor; have no confidence in a friend; guard the doors of your mouth from her who lies in you arm; for the son treats the father with contempt, the daughter rises up against her mother, the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; a man’s enemies are the men of his own house.” (7:1-6)

A. INFERENCE:  “But as for me, I will look to the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me.” (7:7)

1. FINDINGS: “Rejoice not over me, O my enemy; when I fall, I shall rise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me.” (7:8)

2. CRITERIA: “I will bear the indignation of the Lord because I have sinned against him, until he pleads my cause and executes judgment for me.” (7:9)

3. CONDITION: “He will bring me out to the light; I shall look upon his vindication.” (7:9)

4. CAUSE: “The godly has perished from the earth, and there is no one upright among mankind; they all lie in wait for blood, and each hunts the other with a net.” (7:2)

5. EFFECT: “Then my enemy will see, and shame will cover her who said to me, ‘Where is the Lord your God?’ My eyes will look upon her; now she will be trampled down like the mire of the streets.” (7:10)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Wait for the God of Salvation” (7:1-10)

B. INFERENCE:  “A day for the building of your walls! In that day the boundary shall be far extended. In that day will come to you from Assyria and the cities of Egypt, and from Egypt to the River, from sea to sea and from mountain to mountain. But the earth will be desolate because of its inhabitants, for the fruit of their deeds.” (7:11-13)

1. FINDINGS: “Shepherd your people with your staff, the flock of your inheritance, who dwell alone in the forest in the midst of a garden land; let them graze in Bashan and Gilead as in the days of old. As in the days when you came out of the land of Egypt, I will show them marvelous things. The nations shall see and be ashamed of all their might; they shall lay their hands on their mouths; their ears shall be deaf; they shall lick the dust like a serpent, like the crawling things of the earth; they shall turn in dread to the Lord our God, and they shall be in fear of you.” (7:14-17) [Inference to the bema seat can be seen here (2 Corinthians 5:10).]

2. CRITERIA: “Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity and passing over transgression for the remnant of his inheritance? He does not retain his anger forever, because he delights in steadfast love. He will again have compassion on us; he will tread our iniquities underfoot. You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea. You will show faithfulness to Jacob and steadfast love to Abraham, as you have sworn to our fathers from the days of old.” (7:18-20) [Inference to the Lamb’s Book of Life can be seen here (Revelation 20:15).]

3. CONDITION: “He does not retain his anger forever, because he delights in steadfast love.” (7:18)

4. CAUSE: “You will show faithfulness to Jacob and steadfast love to Abraham, as you have sworn to our fathers from the days of old.” (7:20)

5. EFFECT: “He will again have compassion on us; he will tread our iniquities underfoot. You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea.” (7:19)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Wait for God’s steadfast love and compassion.” (7:1-20)

Nahum 1, God’s Wrath Against Nineveh

I. KEY TEXT: “The Lord is a jealous and avenging God; the Lord is avenging and wrathful; the Lord takes vengeance on his adversaries and keeps wrath for his enemies. The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, and the Lord will by no means clear the guilty. His way is in whirlwind and storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet. Bashan and Carmel wither; the bloom of Lebanon withers. The mountains quake before him; the hills melt; the earth heaves before him, the world and all who dwell in it. ” (1:1-5)

A. INFERENCE: “Who can stand before his indignation? Who can endure the heat of his anger? His wrath is poured out like fire, and the rocks are broken into pieces by him.” (1:6)

1. FINDINGS: “From you came one who plotted evil against the Lord, a worthless counselor.” (1:11)

2. CRITERIA: “Thus says the Lord, ‘Though they are at full strength and many, they will be cut down and pass away.'” (1:12)

3. CONDITION: “For they are like entangled thorns, like drunkards as they drink; they are consumed like stubble fully dried.” (1:10)

4. CAUSE: The people of Nineveh listened to Jonah and repented; however, 100 years later they did not listen to Nahum and collapsed before Babylon. “What do you plot against the Lord? He will make a complete end; trouble will not rise up a second time.” (1:9)

5. EFFECT: “And now I will break his yoke from off you and will burst your bonds apart. The Lord has given commandment about you; No more shall your name be perpetuated; from the house of your gods I will cut off the carved image and the metal image. I will make your grave, for you are vile. Behold, upon the mountains, the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace! Keep your feasts, O Judah; fulfill your vows, for never again shall the worthless pass through you; he is utterly cut off.” (1:13-15)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Repent as in the days of Jonah, return to the Lord God.” (1:1-15)

Nahum 2, The  Destruction of Nineveh

I. KEY TEXT: “The scatterer has come up against you. Man the ramparts; watch the road; dress for battle; collect all your strength.” (2:1)

A. INFERENCE: “For the Lord is restoring the majesty of Jacob as the majesty of Israel, for plunderers have plundered them and ruined their branches.” (2:2)

1. FINDINGS: “The shield of his mighty men is red; his soldiers are clothed in scarlet. The chariots come with flashing metal on the day he musters them; the cypress spears are brandished.” (2:3)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . the palace melts away.” (2:6)

3. CONDITION: “The chariots race madly through the streets; they rush to and fro through the squares; they gleam like torches; they dart like lightning.” (2:4)

4. CAUSE: “Behold, I am against you, declares the Lord of hosts, and I will burn your chariots in smoke, and the sword shall devour your young lions. I will cut off your prey from the earth, and the voice of your messengers shall no longer be heard.” (2:13)

5. EFFECT: “Desolate! Desolation and ruin! Hearts melt and knees tremble; anguish is in all lions; all faces grow pale! Where is the lions’ den, the feeding place of the young lions, where the lion and lioness went, where his cubs were, with none to disturb? The lion tore enough for his cubs and strangled prey for his lionesses; he filled his caves with prey and his dens with torn flesh.” (2:10-12)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Nineveh should repent again, and turn to the Lord God” (2:1-13)

Nahum 3, Woe to Nineveh

I. KEY TEXT: “Woe to the bloody city, all full of lies and plunder–no end to the prey! The crack of the whip, and rumble of the wheel, galloping horse and bounding chariot! Horsemen charging, flashing sword and glittering spear, hosts of slain, heaps of corpses, dead bodies without end–they stumble over the bodies!” (3:1-3)

A. INFERENCE: “And all for the countless whorings of the prostitute, graceful and of deadly charms, who betrays nations with her whorings, and peoples with her charms.” (3:4)

1. FINDINGS: “Behold, I am against you, declares the Lord of hosts, and will lift up your skirts over your face; and I will make nations look at your nakedness and kingdoms at your shame.” (3:5)

2. CRITERIA: “Draw water for the siege; strengthen your forts; go into the clay; tread the mortar; take hold of the brick mold! There will the fire devour you; the sword will cut you off. It will devour you like the locust.” (3:14-16)

3. CONDITION: “All your fortresses are like fig trees with first-ripe figs–if shaken they fall into the mouth of the eater.” (3:12)

4. CAUSE: “All who hear the news about you clap their hands over you. For upon whom has not come your unceasing evil.” (3:19)

5. EFFECT: “And all who look at you will shrink from you and say, Wasted is Nineveh; who will grieve for her? Where shall I seek comforters for you?” (3:7)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Nineveh should repent again, and turn to the Lord God” (2:1-13)

Habakkuk 1, Habakkuk’s Complaint

I. KEY TEXT: “O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not hear? Or cry to you ‘Violence!’ and you will not save? Why do you make me see iniquity, and why do you idly look at wrong? Destruction and violence are before me; strife and contention arise.” (1:2-3)

A. INFERENCE: “So the law is paralyzed, and justice never goes forth. For the wicked surround the righteous; so justice goes forth perverted.” (1:4)

1. FINDINGS: The Lord God says, “Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told.” (1:5)

2. CRITERIA: “For behold, I am raising up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation, who march through the breadth of the earth, to seize dwellings not their own. They are dreaded and fearsome; their justice and dignity go forth from themselves.” (1:6-7)

3. CONDITION: “At kings they scoff, and at rulers they laugh. They laugh at every fortress, for they pile up earth and take it. Then they sweep by like the wind and go on, guilty men, whose own might is their god!” (1:10-11)

4. CAUSE: “Their horsemen come from afar; they fly like an eagle swift to devour.” (1:8)

5. EFFECT: “It appears God can use a wicked nation such a Babylon for his purpose.” (1:1-11)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Live by faith awaiting salvation.” (2:4)

Habakkuk 2, The Righteous Shall Live by His Faith

I. KEY TEXT: “And the Lord answered me: Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it. For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end–it will not lie.” (2:2-3)

A. INFERENCE: “If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.” (2:3)

1. FINDINGS: “The righteous shall live by his faith while awaiting salvation.” (2:4)

2. CRITERIA: “Moreover, wine is a traitor, an arrogant man who is never at rest. His greed is as wide as Sheol; like death he has never enough He gathers for himself all nations and collects as his own all peoples.” (2:5)

3. CONDITION: “Woe to him (the Chaldeans) who heaps up what is not his own–for how long?–and loads himself with pledges! Will not your debtors suddenly arise, and those awake who will make you tremble? Then you will be spoil for them.” (2:6-7)

4. CAUSE: “You have devised shame for your house by cutting off many peoples; you have forfeited you life. For the stone will cry out from the wall, and the beam from the woodwork respond.” (2:10-11)

5. EFFECT: “Because you have plundered many nations, all the remnant of the peoples shall plunder you, for the blood of man and violence to the earth, to cities and all who dwell in them.” (2:8)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “But the Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth keep silence before him.” (2:20)

Habakkuk 3, Habakkuk’s Prayer

I. KEY TEXT: “O Lord, I have heard the report of you, and your work, O Lord, do I fear. In the midst of the years revive it; in the midst of the years make it known; in wrath remember mercy. God came from Teman, and the Holy One from Mount Paran. His splendor covered the heavens, and the earth was full of his praise. His brightness was like the light; rays flashed from his hand; and there he veiled his power. Before him went pestilence, and plague followed at his heels. He stood and measured the earth; he looked and shook the nations; then the eternal mountains were scattered; the everlasting hills sank low. His were the everlasting ways. I saw the tents of Cushan in affliction; the curtains of the land of Midian did tremble. Was your wrath against the rivers, O Lord? Was you anger against the rivers, or your indignation against the sea, when you rode on your horses, on your chariot of salvation? You stripped the sheath from your bow, calling for many arrows. You split the earth with rivers. The mountains saw you and writhed; the raging waters swept on; the deep gave forth its voice; it lifted its hand on high. The sun and moon stood still in their place at the light of your arrows as they sped, at the flash of your glittering spear. You marched through the earth in fury; you threshed the nations in anger. You went out for the salvation of your people, for the salvation of your anointed. You crushed the head of the house of the wicked, laying him bare from thigh to neck. You pierced with his own arrows the heads of his warriors, who came like a whirlwind to scatter me, rejoicing as if to devour the poor in secret. You trampled the sea with your horses, the surging of waters.” (3:2-15)

A. INFERENCE: “I hear and my body trembles; my lips quiver at the sound; rottenness enters into my bones; my legs tremble beneath me. Yet I will quietly wait for the day of trouble to come upon people who invade us.” (3:16)

1. FINDINGS: “You went out for the salvation of your people, for the salvation of your anointed.” (3:13)

2. CRITERIA: “God, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the deer’s; he makes me tread on my high places.” (3:19)

3. CONDITION: “Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.” (3:17-18)

4. CAUSE: “Fear and praise.” (3:2, 3)

5. EFFECT: “Habakkuk rejoices in the Lord.” (3:2-19)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Quietly wait for the day of trouble.” (3:16)

Zephaniah 1, The Coming Judgment on Judah

I. KEY TEXT: “‘I will utterly sweep away everything from the face of the earth,’ declares the Lord. ‘I will sweep away man and beast; I will sweep away the birds of the heavens and the fish of the sea, and the rubble with the wicked. I will cut off mankind from the face of the earth,’ declares the Lord. I will stretch out my hand against Judah and against all the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and I will cut off from this place the remnant of Baal and the name of the idolatrous priests along with the priests, those who bow down on the roofs to the host of the heavens, those who bow down and swear to the Lord and yet swear by Milcom, those who have turned back from following the Lord, who do not seek the Lord or inquire of him.” (1:2-6)

A. INFERENCE: “Be silent before the Lord God! For the day of the Lord is near; the Lord has prepared a sacrifice and consecrated his guests.” (1:7)

1. FINDINGS: “And on the day of the Lord’s sacrifice–I will punish the officials and the king’s sons and all who array themselves in foreign attire. On that day I will punish everyone who leaps over the threshold, and those who fill their master’s house with violence and fraud. On that day, declares the Lord, a cry will be heard from the Fish Gate, a wail from the Second Quarter, a loud crash from the hills.” (1:8)

2. CRITERIA: “A day of wrath is that day, a day of distress and anguish, a day of ruin and devastation, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness, a day of trumpet blast and battle cry against the fortified cities and against the lofty battlements. I will bring distress on mankind, so that they shall walk like the blind, because they have sinned against the Lord; their blood shall be poured out like dust, and their flesh like dung. Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them on the day of the wrath of the Lord. In the fire of his jealousy, all the earth shall be consumed; for a full and sudden end he will make of all the inhabitants of the earth.” (1:15-18)

3. CONDITION: “The great day of the Lord is near, near and hastening fast; the sound of the day of the Lord is bitter; the mighty man cries aloud there.” (1:14)

4. CAUSE: “Baal, idols, idolatrous priests, and those who have turned back from following the Lord.” (1:4-6)

5. EFFECT: “Wail, O inhabitants of the Mortar! For all the traders are no more; all who weigh out silver are cut off. At that time I will search Jerusalem with lamps, and I will punish the men who are complacent, those who say in their hearts, ‘The Lord will not do good, nor will he do ill.’ Their goods shall be plundered, and their houses laid waste. Though they build houses, they shall not inhabit them; though they plant vineyards, they shall not drink wine from them.” (1:11-13)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land, who do his just commands; seek righteousness; seek humility; perhaps you may be hidden on the day of the anger of the Lord.” (2:3)

Zephaniah 2, Judgment on Judah’s Enemies

I. KEY TEXT: “Gather together, yes, gather, O shameless nation, before the decree takes effect–before the day passes away like chaff–before there comes upon you the burning anger of the Lord, before there comes upon you the day of the anger of the Lord.” (2:1-2)

A. INFERENCE: Gaza, Ashdod, Ekron, Cherethites, Canaan, Philistines; Ashkelon, Moab, Ammonites, Cushites, Assyria, and Nineveh are labeled for destruction; but the remnant is reserved for the seacoast. “And you, O seacoast, shall be pastures, with meadows for shepherds and folds for flocks. The seacoast shall become the possession of the remnant of Judah, on which they shall graze; and in the houses of Ashkelon they shall lie down at evening. For the Lord their God will be mindful of them and restore their fortunes.” (2:4-13)

1. FINDINGS: The remnant of Judah will prevail; it has to prevail to enable the consummation of God’s strategic plan to ultimately restore a perfect kingdom–for eternity through Jesus, the Christ. (2:1-15)

2. CRITERIA: “He will famish all the gods of the earth, and to him shall bow down, each in its place, all the lands of the nations.” (2:11)

3. CONDITION: “Desolation on Judah’s enemies.” (2:1-15)

4. CAUSE: “Pride.” (2:10)

5. EFFECT: “The remnant of Judah will be restored.” (2:7)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land, who do his just commands; seek righteousness; seek humility; perhaps you may be hidden on the day of the anger of the Lord.” (2:3)

Zephaniah 3, Judgment on Jerusalem and the Nations

I. KEY TEXT: “Woe to her who is rebellious and defiled, the oppressing city! She listens to no voice; she accepts no correction. She does not trust in the Lord; she does not draw near to her God. Her officials within her are roaring lions; her judges are evening wolves that leave nothing till the morning. Her prophets are fickle, treacherous men; her priests profane what is holy; they do violence to the law.” (3:1-4)

A. INFERENCE: The Lord within her is righteous; he does no injustice; every morning he shows forth his justice; each dawn he does not fail; but the unjust knows no shame.” (3:5)

1. FINDINGS: Conversion . . . “For at that time I will change the speech of the peoples to a pure speech, that all of them may call upon the name of the Lord and serve him with one accord.” (3:9)

2. CRITERIA: “On that day you shall not be put to shame because of the deeds by which you have rebelled against me; for then I will remove from your midst your proudly exultant one, and you shall no longer be haughty in my holy mountain (Zion)” (3:11)

3. CONDITION: “But I will leave in your midst a people humble and lowly. They shall seek refuge in the name of the Lord, those who are left in Israel; they shall do no injustice and speak no lies, nor shall there be found in their mouth a deceitful tongue. For they shall graze and lie down, and none shall make them afraid.” (3:12-13)

4. CAUSE: “Sing aloud, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel! Rejoice and exult with all your heart, O daughter of Jerusalem! The Lord has taken away the judgments against you; he has cleared away the judgments against you; he has cleared away your enemies.” (3:15)

5. EFFECT: “I have cut off nations; their battlements are in ruins; I have laid waste their streets so that no one walks in them; their cities have been made desolate, without a man, without an inhabitant.” (3:6)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Behold, at that time I will deal with all your oppressors. And I will save the lame and gather the outcast, and I will change their shame into praise and renown in all the earth. At that time I will bring you in, at the time when I gather you together; for I will make you renowned and praised among all the peoples of the earth, when I restore your fortunes before your eyes,’ says the Lord.” (3:19-20)

 

Week #119; Wed, Apr 08: Haggai 1–Zechariah 9

Week #119; Wed, Apr 08: Haggai 1:1–Zechariah 9:17

CHAPTER OBSERVATIONS:

Haggai 1, The Command to Rebuild the Temple

I. KEY TEXT: “‘Thus says the Lord of hosts: These people say the time has not yet come to rebuild the house of the Lord.’ Then the word of the Lord came by the hand of Haggai the prophet, ‘Is it a time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, while this house lies in ruins? Now, therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts: Consider your ways. You have sown much, and harvested little. You eat, but you never have enough; you drink, but you never have your fill. You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm. And he who earns wages does so to put them into a bag with holes.” (1:2-6)

A. INFERENCE: “Thus says the Lord of hosts: Consider your ways. Go up to the hills and bring wood and build the house, that I may take pleasure in it and that I may be glorified, says the Lord.  You looked for much, and behold, it came to little. And when you brought it home, I blew it away. Why? declares the Lord of hosts. Because of my house that lies in ruins, while each of you busies himself with his own house. Therefore the heavens above you have withheld the dew, and the earth has withheld its produce. And I have called for a drought on the land and the hills, on the grain, the new wine, the oil, on what the ground brings forth, on man and beast, and on all their labors.” (1:7-11)

1. FINDINGS: “Then Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, with all the remnant of the people, obeyed the voice of the Lord their God, and the words of Haggai the prophet, as the Lord their God had sent him. And the people feared the Lord.” (1:12)

2. CRITERIA: “The Lord was not pleased with the neglect of his temple.” (Lev. 26:2-20)

3. CONDITION: “Because of my house that lies in ruins . . .” (1:9)

4. CAUSE: “. . . each of you busies himself with his own house.” (1:9)

5. EFFECT: The rebuilding of the temple reflected God’s restored presence among his people.

6. RECOMMENDATION: Rebuild the temple.

Haggai 2, The Coming Glory of the Temple

I. KEY TEXT: “In the seventh month, on the twenty-first day of the month, the word of the Lord came by the hand of Haggai the prophet, ‘Speak now to Zerubababel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to all the remnant of the people, and say, ‘Who is left among you who saw this house in its former glory? How do you see it now? Is it not as nothing in your eyes?” (2:1-3)

A. INFERENCE: “Work, for I am with you, declares the Lord of hosts, according to the covenant that I made with you when you came out of Egypt. My Spirit remains in your midst. Fear not. For thus says the Lord of hosts: Yet once more, in a little while, I will shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land.” (2:4-6)

1. FINDINGS: “And I will shake all nations, so that the treasures of all nations shall come in, and I will fill this house with glory, says the Lord of hosts. The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, declares the Lord of hosts. The latter glory of this house shall be greater than the former, says the Lord of hosts. And in this place I will give peace, declares the Lord of hosts.” (2:7-9)

2. CRITERIA: “The latter glory of this house shall be greater than the former, says the Lord of hosts. And in this place I will give peace, declares the Lord of hosts.” (2:9)

3. CONDITION: “I struck you and all the products of your toil with blight and with mildew and with hail, yet you did not turn to me, declares the Lord.” (2:17)

4. CAUSE: The chosen people did not turn to the Lord without Haggai’s messages from the Lord; yet the Lord God decided to bless them. It is these people that are chosen to bring the genealogy of Jesus Christ in Matthew together for his glory and our salvation.

5. EFFECT: Haggai’s prophesy was right then and is right now.

6. RECOMMENDATION: Turn to the Lord; fear the Lord and do what he says.

Zechariah 1, A Call to Return to the Lord

I. KEY TEXT: “In the eighth month, in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came to the prophet Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, son of Iddo, saying, ‘The Lord was very angry with your fathers.’ Therefore, say to them ‘Thus declares the Lord of hosts: Return to me, says the Lord of hosts, and I will return to you, says the Lord of hosts. Do not be like your fathers, to whom the former prophets cried out, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, Return from your evil ways and from your evil deeds.'” (1:1-4)

A. INFERENCE: “But they did not hear or pay attention to me, declares the Lord. Your fathers, where are they? And the prophets, do they live forever? But my words and my statutes, which I commanded my servants the prophets, did they not overtake your fathers? So they repented and said, As the Lord of hosts purposed to deal with us for our ways and deeds, so has he dealt with us.” (1:5-6)

1. FINDINGS: “I saw in the night, and behold, a man riding on a red horse! . . . “We have patrolled the earth and behold, all the earth remains at rest.’ . . . “I have returned to Jerusalem with mercy; my house shall be built in it, declares the Lord of hosts, and the measuring line shall be stretched out over Jerusalem.” (1:8, 11, 16) “And, I lifted my eyes and saw, and behold, four horns! And I said to the angel who talked with me, ‘What are these? And he said to me, ‘These are the horns that have scattered Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem.’ . . . ‘And these have come to terrify them, to cast down the horns of the nations who lifted up their horns against the land of Judah to scatter it.” (1:18-21)

2. CRITERIA: “My cities shall again overflow with prosperity and the Lord will again comfort Zion and again choose Jerusalem.” (1:17)

3. CONDITION: “And these have come to terrify them, to cast down the horns of the nations who lifted up their horns against the land of Judah to scatter it.” (1:21)

4. CAUSE: “Therefore, thus says the Lord, I have returned to Jerusalem with mercy; my house shall be built in it, declares the Lord of hosts, and the measuring line shall be stretched out over Jerusalem.” (1:16)

5. EFFECT: “My cities shall again overflow with prosperity and the Lord will again comfort Zion and again choose Jerusalem.” (1:17)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Turn to the Lord; fear the Lord and do what he says.

Zechariah 2, A Vision of a Man with a Measuring Line

I. KEY TEXT: “And I lifted my eyes and saw, and behold, a man with a measuring line in his hand! Then I said, ‘Where are you going?’ And he said to me, ‘To measure Jerusalem, to see what is its width and what is its length.’ And behold, the angel who talked with me came forward, and another angel came forward to meet him and said to him, ‘Run, say to that young man, ‘Jerusalem shall be inhabited as villages without walls, because of the multitude of people and livestock in it. And I will be to her a wall of fire all around, declares the Lord, and I will be the glory in her midst.'” (2:1-5)

A. INFERENCE: “Up! Up! Flee from the land of the north, declares the Lord. For I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heavens, declares the Lord. For thus said the Lord of hosts, after his glory sent me to the nations who plundered you, for he who touches you touches the apple of his eye: . . .” (2:6-8)

1. FINDINGS: “‘Behold, I will shake my hand over them, and they shall become plunder for those who served them. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent me.'” (2:9)

2. CRITERIA: “Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion, for behold, I come and I will dwell in your midst, declares the Lord.” (2:10)

3. CONDITION: “And many nations shall join themselves to the Lord in that day, and shall be my people. And I will dwell in your midst, and you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you.” (2:11)

4. CAUSE: “Jerusalem shall be inhabited as villages without walls, because of the multitude of people and livestock in it. And I will be to her a wall of fire all around, declares the Lord, and I will be the glory in her midst.” (2:4-5)

5. EFFECT: “And the Lord will inherit Judah as his portion in the land, and will again choose Jerusalem.” (2:12)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Be silent, all flesh, before the Lord, for he has roused himself from his holy dwelling.” (2:13)

Zechariah 3, A Vision of Joshua the High Priest

I. KEY TEXT: “Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to accuse him.” (3:1)

A. INFERENCE: “And the Lord said to Satan, ‘The Lord rebuke you, O Satan! The Lord who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked form the fire?'” (3:2)

1. FINDINGS: “Now Joshua was standing before the angel, clothed with filthy garments. And the angel said to those who were standing before him, ‘Remove the filthy garments from him.’ And to him he said, ‘Behold, I have taken your iniquity away from you, and I will clothe you with pure vestments.'” (3:3-4)

2. CRITERIA: “And the angel of the Lord solemnly assured Joshua, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts: If you will walk in my ways and keep my charge, then you shall rule my house and have charge of my courts, and I will give you the right of access among those who are standing here.'” (3:6-7)

3. CONDITION: “Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, you and your friends who sit before you, for they are men who are a sign: behold, I will bring my servant the Branch.” (3:8, Isa. 42:1)

4. CAUSE: “For behold, on the stone that I have set before Joshua, on a single stone with seven eyes, I will engrave its inscription, declares the Lord of hosts, and I will remove the iniquity of this land in a single day.” (3:9)

5. EFFECT: “In that day, declares the Lord of hosts, every one of you will invite his neighbor to come under his vine and under his fig tree.” (3:10)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “The Lord’s chosen servant will bring justice to the nations.” (Isa. 42:1)

Zechariah 4, A Vision of a Golden Lampstand

I. KEY TEXT: “And the angel who talked with me came again and woke me, like a man who is awakened out of his sleep. And he said to me, ‘What do you see?’ I said, ‘I see, and behold, a lampstand all of gold, with a bowl on the top of it, and seven lamps on it, with seven lips on each of the lamps that are on the top of it. And there are two olive trees by it, one on the right of the bowl and the other on its left.'” (4:1-3)

A. INFERENCE: “And I said to the angel who talked with me, ‘What are these, my lord?’ Then the angel who talked with me answered and said to me, “Do you not know what these are?’ I said, No, my lord.’ Then he said to me. ‘This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts.’ Who are you, O great mountain? And he shall bring forward the top stone amid shouts of Grace, grace to it!” (4:4-7)

1. FINDINGS: “Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, ‘The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also complete it. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you.” (4:8-9)

2. CRITERIA: “For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice, and shall see the plumb line in the hand of Zerubbabel.” (4:10)

3. CONDITION: “‘These seven are the eyes of the Lord, which range through the whole earth.’ Then I said to him, ‘What are these two olive trees on the right and the left of the lampstand? And a second time I answered and said to him, What are these two branches of the olive trees, which are beside the two golden pipes from which the golden oil is poured out?’ He said to me, ‘Do you not know what these are?’ I said, ‘No, my lord.'” (4:10-13)

4. CAUSE: “Then he said, ‘These are the two anointed ones who stand by the Lord of the whole earth.'” (4:14)

5. EFFECT: “These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth. And if anyone would harm them, fire pours from their mouth and consumes their foes.” (Rev. 11:4)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Respect the power of the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth. “They have the power to shut the sky, that no rain may fall during the days of their prophesying, and they have power over the waters to turn them into blood and strike the earth with every kind of plague (or virus), as often as they desire.” (Rev. 11:6)

Zechariah 5, A Vision of a Flying Scroll

I. KEY TEXT: “Again I lifted my eyes and saw, and behold, a flying scroll! And he said to me, ‘What do you see?’ I answered, ‘I see a flying scroll. Its length is twenty cubits, and its width ten cubits.’ Then he said to me, ‘This is the curse that goes out over the face of the whole land. For everyone who steals shall be cleaned out according to what is on one side, and everyone who swears falsely shall be cleaned out according to what is on the other side.’ I will send it out, declares the Lord of hosts, and it shall enter the house of the thief, and the house of him who swears falsely by my name. And it shall remain in his house and consume it, both timber and stones.'” (5:1-4)

A. INFERENCE: “Then the angel who talked with me came forward and said to me, ‘Lift you eyes and see what this is that is going out.’ And I said, ‘What is it?’ He said, ‘This is the basket that is going out.’ And he said, ‘This is their iniquity in all the land.’ And behold, the leaden cover was lifted, and there was a woman sitting in the basket! And he said, ‘This is Wickedness.’ And he thrust her back into the basket, and thrust down the leaden weight on its opening.” (5:5-8)

1. FINDINGS: “Then I lifted my eyes and saw, and behold, two women coming forward! The wind was in their wings. They had wings like the wings of a stork, and they lifted up the basket between earth and heaven.” (5:9)

2. CRITERIA: All iniquities must be removed. (5:6)

3. CONDITION: Their iniquities are being removed from all the land. (5:6)

4. CAUSE: “Iniquities.” (5:6)

5. EFFECT: “Then I said to the angel who talked with me, ‘Where are they taking the basket?’ He said to me, ‘To the land of Shinar, to build a house for it. And when this is prepared, they will set the basket down there on its base.'” (5:10-11)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Embrace justice. (Isa. 42:1)

Zechariah 6, A Vision of Four Chariots

I. KEY TEXT: “Again I lifted my eyes and saw, and behold, four chariots came out from between two mountains. And the mountains were mountains of bronze. The first chariot had red horses, the second black horses, the third white horses, and the fourth chariot dappled horses–all of them strong.” (6:1-3)

A. INFERENCE: “Then I answered and said to the angel who talked with me, ‘What are these, my lord?’ And the angel answered and said to me, ‘These are going out to the four winds of heaven, after presenting themselves before the Lord of all the earth. The chariot with the black horses goes toward the north country, the white ones go after them, and the dappled ones go toward the south country.'” (6:5-6)

1. FINDINGS: “When the strong horses came out, they were impatient to go and patrol the earth. And he said, ‘Go, patrol the earth.'” (6:7)

2. CRITERIA: “So they patrolled the earth.” (6:8)

3. CONDITION: ” Then he cried to me, ‘Behold, those who go toward the north country have set my Spirit at rest in the north country.'” (6:8)

4. CAUSE: The four chariots have a mission. (Dan. 2:39, Rev. 6:4-5)

5. EFFECT: “The Lord will appear over them, and his arrow will go forth like lightning; the Lord God will sound the trumpet and will march forth in the whirlwinds of the south.” (9:14)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God.” (6:15)

B. INFERENCE: “And the word of the Lord came to me: “Take from the exiles Heldia, Tobijah, and Jedaiah, who have arrived from Babylon, and go the same day to the house of Josiah, the son of Zephaniah. Take from them silver and gold, and make a crown, and set it on the head of Joshua, the son o Jehozadak, the high priest. (6:9)

1. FINDINGS: “And say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘Behold, the man whose name is the Branch: for he shall branch out from his place, and he shall build the temple of he Lord.” (6:12)

2. CRITERIA: “It is he who shall build the temple of the Lord and shall bear royal honor, and shall sit and rule on his throne. And there shall be a priest on his throne, and the counsel of peace shall be between them both.” (6:13)

3. CONDITION: “And the crown shall be in the temple of the Lord . . .” (6:14)

4. CAUSE: “And a reminder to Helem, Tobijah, Jedaiah, and Hen the son of Zephaniah. (6:15) Also, “A memorial” (Ex. 12:14)

5. EFFECT: “And those who are far off shall come and help to build the temple of the Lord. And you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you.” (6:15)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “And this shall come to pass, if you will diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God.” (6:15)

Zechariah 7, A Call for Justice and Mercy

I. KEY TEXT: “Then the word of the Lord of hosts came to me: ‘Say to all the people of the land and the priests, When you fasted and mourned in the fifth month and in the seventh, for these seventy years, was it for me that you fasted? And when you eat and when you drink, do you not eat for yourselves and drink for yourselves? Were not these the words that the Lord proclaimed by the former prophets, when Jerusalem was inhabited and prosperous, with her cities around her and the South and the lowland were inhabited?'” (7:4-7)

A. INFERENCE: “Thus says the Lord of hosts, Render true judgments, show kindness and mercy to one another, do not oppress the widow, the fatherless, the sojourner, or the poor, and let none of you devise evil against another in your heart.” (7:9-10)

1. FINDINGS: “But they refused to pay attention and turned a stubborn shoulder and stopped their ears that they might not hear.” (7:11)

2. CRITERIA: “They made their hearts diamond-hard lest they should hear the law and the words that the Lord of hosts had sent by his Spirit through the former prophets.” (7:12)

3. CONDITION: “Thus the land they left was desolate, so that no one went to and fro, and the pleasant land was made desolate.” (7:14)

4. CAUSE: “As I called, and they would not hear, so they called, and I would not hear, says the Lord of hosts, and . . . ” (7:13)

5. EFFECT: “. . . I scattered them with a whirlwind among all the nations that they had not known.” (7:13-14)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Answer the call to justice and mercy. (7:1-14)

Zechariah 8, The Coming Peace and Prosperity of Zion

I. KEY TEXT: “And the word of the Lord of hosts came, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts: I am jealous for Zion with great jealousy, and I am jealous for her with great wrath.” (8:1-2)

A. INFERENCE: “Thus says the Lord: I have returned to Zion and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem, and Jerusalem shall be called the faithful city, and the mountain of the Lord of hosts, the holy mountain.” (8:3)

1. FINDINGS: “Thus says the Lord of hosts: Old men and old women shall again sit in the streets of Jerusalem, each with staff in hand because of great age. And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in its streets.” (8:4-5)

2. CRITERIA: “Thus says the Lord of hosts: behold, I will save my people from the east country and from the west country and I will bring them to dwell in the midst of Jerusalem. And they shall be my people, and I will be their God, in faithfulness and in righteousness.” (8:7-8)

3. CONDITION: “Thus says the Lord of hosts: ‘Let your hands be strong, you who in these days have been hearing these words form the mouth of the prophets who were present on the day that the foundation of the house of the Lord of hosts was laid, that the temple might be built.'” (8:9)

4. CAUSE: “For before those days there was no wage for man or any wage for beast, neither was there any safety from the foe for him who went out or came in, for I set every man against his neighbor. But now I will not deal with the remnant of this people as in the former days, declares the Lord of hosts. For there shall be a sowing of peace. The vine shall give its fruit, and the ground shall give its produce, and the heavens shall give their dew. And I will cause the remnant of this people to possess all these things.” (8:10-12)

5. EFFECT: “Thus says the Lord of hosts: Peoples shall yet come, even the inhabitants of many cities. The inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, ‘Let us go at once to entreat the favor of the Lord and to seek the Lord of hosts; I myself am going.’ Many peoples and strong nations shall come to seek the Lord of hosts in Jerusalem and to entreat the favor of the Lord. Thus says the Lord of hosts: In those days ten men from the nations of every tongue shall take hold of the robe of a Jew, saying, ‘Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you.'” (8:20-23)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Fear not, but let your hands be strong.” (8:13)

Zechariah 9, Judgment on Israel’s Enemies

I. KEY TEXT: “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt the foal of a donkey.” (9:9) Jesus can be seen here.

A. INFERENCE: “I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim and the war horse from Jerusalem; and the battle bow shall be cut off, and he shall speak peace to the nations; his rule shall be from sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth.” (9:10)

1. FINDINGS: “Then the Lord will appear over them, and his arrow will go forth like lightning; the Lord God will sound the trumpet and will march forth in the whirlwinds of the south.” (9:14)

2. CRITERIA: “The Lord of hosts will protect them, and they shall devour, and tread down the sling stones, and they shall drink and roar as if drunk with wine, and be full like a bowl, drenched like the corners of the altar.” (9:15)

3. CONDITION: “On that day the Lord their God will save them, as the flock of his people; for like the jewels of a crown they shall shine on his land.” (9:16)

4. CAUSE: “For how great is his goodness, and how great his beauty! Grain shall make the young men flourish, and new wine the young women.” (9:17)

5. EFFECT: “On that day the Lord their God will save them, as the flock of his people; for like the jewels of a crown they shall shine on his land.” (9:16) Salvation of the Jews as a NATION can be seen here.

6. RECOMMENDATION: Shelter in place with the Lord of hosts. (9:1-17)

Week #120; Wed, Apr 15: Zechariah 10–Malachi–Matthew 2

Week #120; Wed, Apr 15: Zechariah 10:1–Malachi–Matthew 2:23

CHAPTER OBSERVATIONS:

Zechariah 10:1, The Restoration for Judah and Israel

I. KEY TEXT: “Ask rain from the Lord in the season of the spring rain, from the Lord who makes the storm clouds, and he will give them showers of rain, to everyone the vegetation in the field.” (10:1)

A. INFERENCE: “For the household gods utter nonsense, and the diviners see lies; they tell false dreams and give empty consolation. Therefore the people wander like sheep; they are afflicted for lack of a shepherd.” (10:2)

1. FINDINGS: “My anger is hot against the shepherds, and I will punish the leaders; for the Lord of hosts cares for his flock, the house of Judah, and will make them like his majestic steed in battle.” (10:3)

2. CRITERIA: “I will strengthen the house of Judah, and I will save the house of Joseph. I will bring them back because I have compassion on them, and they shall be as though I had not rejected them, for I am the Lord their God and I will answer them.” (10:6)

3. CONDITION: “Though I scattered them among the nations, yet in far countries they shall remember me, and with their children they shall live and return.” (10:9)

4. CAUSE: “For the household gods utter nonsense, and the diviners see lies; they tell false dreams and give empty consolation.” (10:2)

5. EFFECT: “‘I will make them strong in the Lord, and they shall walk in his name,’ declares the Lord.” (10:12)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Ask rain from the Lord in the season of the spring rain, from the Lord who makes the storm clouds, and he will give them showers of rain, to everyone the vegetation in the field.” (10:1)

Zechariah 11:1, The Flock Doomed to Slaughter

I. KEY TEXT: “For I will no longer have pity on the inhabitants of this land, declares the Lord. Behold, I will cause each of them to fall into the hand of his neighbor, and each into the hand of his king, and they shall crush the land, and I will deliver none from their hand.” (11:6)

A. INFERENCE: “So, I became the shepherd of the flock doomed to be slaughtered by the sheep traders. And I took two staffs, one I named Favor, the other I named Union. And I tended the sheep.” (11:7)

1. FINDINGS: “For I will no longer have pity on the inhabitants of this land, declares the Lord. Behold, I will cause each of them to fall into the hand of his neighbor, and each into the hand of his king, and they shall crush the land, and I will deliver none from their hand.” (11:6)

2. CRITERIA: “No pity.” (11:6)

3. CONDITION: “And I took my staff, Favor, and I broke it, annulling the covenant that I had made with all the peoples . . . Then I broke my second staff Union, annulling the brotherhood between Judah and Israel.” (11:10, 14)

4. CAUSE: “For behold, I am raising up in the land a shepherd who does not care for those being destroyed, or seek the young or heal the maimed or nourish the healthy, but devours the flesh of the fat ones, tearing off even their hoofs.” (11:16)

5. EFFECT: “Woe to my worthless shepherd, who deserts the flock! May the sword strike his arm and his right eye! Let his arm be wholly withered, his right eye utterly blinded!” (11:17)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Throw away your wages of thirty pieces of silver–the lordly price at which I was priced by them, to the potter. (11:13)

Zechariah 12:1, The Lord Will Give Salvation

I. KEY TEXT: “The burden of the word of the Lord concerning Israel: Thus declares the Lord, who stretched out the heavens and founded the earth and formed the spirit of man within him: ‘Behold, I am about to make Jerusalem a cup of staggering to all the surrounding peoples. The siege of Jerusalem will also be against Judah. On that day I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples. All who lift it will surely hurt themselves. And all the nations of the earth will gather against it. On that day, declares the Lord, I will strike every horse with panic, and its rider with madness, But for the sake of the house of Judah I will keep my eyes open, when I strike every horse of the peoples with blindness. Then the clans of Judah shall say to themselves, The ‘inhabitants of Jerusalem have strength through the Lord of hosts, their God.'” (12:1-5)

A. INFERENCE: “On that day I will make the clans of Judah like a blazing pot in the midst of wood, like a flaming torch among sheaves. And they shall devour to the right and to the left all the surrounding peoples, while Jerusalem shall again be inhabited in its place, in Jerusalem.” (12:6)

1. FINDINGS: “And the Lord will give salvation to the tents of Judah first, that the glory of the house of David and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem may not surpass that of Judah. On that day the Lord will protect the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the feeblest among them on that day shall be like David, and the house of David shall be like God, like the angel of the Lord, going before them. And on that day I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.” (12:7-9) Jesus can be seen here.

2. CRITERIA: “And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy, so that, when they look on me, on him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn. ” (12:10) Jesus can be seen here.

3. CONDITION: “On that day the mourning in Jerusalem will be as great as the mourning for Hadad-rimmon in the plain of Megiddo.” (12:11, Rev. 19:16)

4. CAUSE: Jesus wins. (12:10)

5. EFFECT: “The land shall mourn, each family by itself: the family of the house of David by itself, and their wives by themselves; the family of the house of Nathan by itself, and their wives by themselves; the house of Levi by itself, and their wives by themselves; the family of the Shimeites by itself, and their wives by themselves; and all the families that are left, each by itself, and their wives by themselves.” (12:12-14)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Repent and renew their covenant with the Lord God. (12:1-14)

Zechariah 13:1, Idolatry Cut Off

I. KEY TEXT: “And on that day there shall be a fountain opened for the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and uncleanness.” (13:1)

A. INFERENCE: “And on that day, declares the Lord of hosts, I will cut off the names of the idols from the land, so that they shall be remembered no more. And also I will remove from the land the prophets and the spirit of uncleanness. And if anyone again prophesies, his father and mother who bore him will say to him, ‘You shall not live, for you speak lies in the name of the Lord.’ And his father and mother who bore him shall pierce him through when he prophesies.” (13:2-3)

1. FINDINGS: “‘Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, against the man who stands next to me, declares the Lord of hosts. Strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered; I will turn my hand against the little ones. In the whole land, declares the Lord, two thirds hall be cut off and perish, and one third shall be left alive. And I will put this third into the fire, and refine them as one refines silver, and test them as gold is tested. They will call upon my name, and I will answer them. I will say, ‘They are my people’; and they will say, ‘The Lord is my God.'” (13:7-9)

2. CRITERIA: The “Prophets and the spirit of uncleanness” to be removed from the land. (13:2)

3. CONDITION: “In the whole land, declares the Lord, two thirds shall be cut off and perish, and one third shall be left alive. And I will put this third into the fire, and refine them as one refines silver, and test them as gold is tested. They will call upon my name, and I will answer them. I will say, ‘They are my people’; and they will say, ‘The Lord is my God.'” (13:7-9)

4. CAUSE: Idols and false prophets. (13:1-9)

5. EFFECT: “They will call upon my name, and I will answer them.” (13:9)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Repent and renew their covenant with the Lord God. (12:1-14)

Zechariah 14:1, The Coming Day of the Lord

I. KEY TEXT: “Behold, a day is coming for the Lord, when the spoil taken from you will be divided in your midst. For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city shall be taken and the houses plundered and the women raped. Half of the city shall go out into exile, but the rest of the people shall not be cut off from the city.” (14:1-2)

A. INFERENCE: “Then the Lord will go out and fight against those nations as when he fights on a day of battle. On that day his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives that lies before Jerusalem on the east, and the Mount of Olives shall split in two from east to west by a very wide valley, so that one half of the Mount shall move northward, and the other half southward. And you shall flee to the valley of my mountains, for the valley of the mountains shall reach to Azal. And you shall flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the Lord my God will come, and all the holy ones with him.” (14:3-5) Jesus can be seen here.

1. FINDINGS: “And the Lord will be king over all the earth. On that day the Lord will be one and his name one.” (14:9) Jesus can be seen here.

2. CRITERIA: “The whole land shall be turned into a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem. But Jerusalem shall remain aloft on its site . . . And it shall be inhabited, for there shall never again be a decree of utter destruction. Jerusalem shall dwell in security.” (14:11)

3. CONDITION: “And this shall be ‘the plague’ with which the Lord will strike all the peoples that wage war against Jerusalem: their flesh will rot while they are still standing on their feet, their eyes will rot in their sockets, and their tongues will rot in their mouths.” (14:12)

4. CAUSE: “Jesus wins.” (14:1-21; Matt. 24:40-51; Rev. 21:23-25)

5. EFFECT: “Then everyone who survives of all the nations that have come against Jerusalem shall go up year after year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Booths.” (14:16)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Attend the ‘Feast of Booths’ to worship the King, the Lord of hosts.” (14:16)

Malachi 1:1, The Lord’s Love for Israel

I. KEY TEXT: “‘I have loved you,’ says the Lord.” (1:2)

A. INFERENCE: “But you say, ‘How have you loved us?'” (1:2)

1. FINDINGS: “If Edom says, ‘We are shattered but we will rebuild the ruins,’ the Lord of hosts says, ‘They may build, but I will tear down, and they will be called the wicked country,’ and the people with whom the Lord is angry forever.'” (1:4)

2. CRITERIA: The love of the Lord for Israel is beyond their understanding. (1:2)

3. CONDITION: “A son honors his father, and a servant his master. If then I am a father, where is my honor? And if I am a master, where is my fear? says the Lord of hosts to you, O priests, who despise my name.” (1:6)

4. CAUSE: “By offering polluted food upon my altar.” (1:7)

5. EFFECT: “Your own eyes shall see this, and you shall say, ‘Great is the Lord beyond the border of Israel!'” (1:5)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Offer only what is a pure offering to the Lord. (1:1-14)

Malachi 2:1, The Lord Rebukes the Priests

I. KEY TEXT: “And now, O priests, this command is for you. If you will not listen, if you will not take it to heart to give honor to my name, says the Lord of hosts, then I will send the curse upon you and I will curse your blessings. Indeed, I have already cursed them, because you do not lay it to heart.” (2:1-2)

A. INFERENCE: “For the lips of a priest should guard knowledge, and people should seek instruction from his mouth. for he is the messenger of the Lord of hosts.” (2:7)

1. FINDINGS: “But you have turned aside from the way. You have caused many to stumble by your instruction. You have corrupted the covenant of Levi, says the Lord of hosts, and so I make you despised and abased before all the people, inasmuch as you do not keep my ways but show partiality in your instruction.” (2:8-9)

2. CRITERIA: The covenant of Levi. (2:8)

3. CONDITION: “You have corrupted the covenant of Levi.” (2:8)

4. CAUSE: “You have turned aside from the way. You have caused many to stumble by your instruction.” (2:9)

5. EFFECT: “. . . so I make you despised and abased before all the people, inasmuch as you do not keep my ways but show partiality in your instruction.” (2:9)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Uphold the covenant of Levi.” (2:8)

B. INFERENCE: “Have we not all one Father? Has not one God created us? Why then are we faithless to one another, profaning the covenant of our fathers?” (2:10)

1. FINDINGS: “For Judah has been faithless, and abomination has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem. For Judah has profaned the sanctuary of the Lord, which he loves, and has married the daughter of a foreign god. And this second thing you do. You cover the Lord’s altar with tears, with weeping and groaning because he no longer regards the offering or accepts it with favor from you hand.” (2:11, 13)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . the covenant of our fathers.” (2:10)

3. CONDITION: “Judah has been faithless, and abomination has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem. For Judah has profaned the sanctuary of the Lord, which he loves, and has married the daughter of a foreign god.” (2:11)

4. CAUSE: “You have wearied the Lord with your words. But you say, ‘How have we wearied him?’ By saying, ‘Everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the Lord, and he delights in them.’ Or by asking, ‘Where is the God of justice?'” (2:17)

5. EFFECT: “Did he not make them one, with a portion of the Spirit in their union?” Godly offspring was obstructed. (2:15)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “So guard yourselves in your spirit, and do not be faithless . . .” (2:16)

Malachi 3:1, The Messenger of the Lord

I. KEY TEXT: “Behold, I send my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. And the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant in whom you delight, behold, he is coming, says the Lord of host. But, who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears? For he is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap. He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, and they will bring offerings in righteousness to the Lord. Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the Lord as in the days of old and as in former years.” (3:1-4; Matt. 11:10; Mark 1:2; Luke 7:27) Jesus and John the Baptist/Elijah can be seen here.

A. INFERENCE: “Then I will draw near to you for judgment” (3:5)

1. FINDINGS: “I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, against the adulterers, against those who swear falsely, against those who oppress the hired worker in his wages, the widow and the fatherless, against those who thrust aside the sojourner, and do not fear me, says the Lord of hosts.” (3:5)

2. CRITERIA: “For I the Lord do not change; therefore you, O children of Jacob, are not consumed. From the days of your fathers you have turned aside from my statutes and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you, says the Lord of hosts. ” (3:6-7)

3. CONDITION: “But you say, ‘How shall we return? Will man rob God? Yet you are robbing me. But you say, ‘How have we robbed you? In your tithes and contributions.” (3:8)

4. CAUSE: “From the days of your fathers you have turned aside from my statutes and have not kept them.” (3:7)

5. EFFECT: “You are cursed with a curse for you are robbing me, the whole nation of you.” (3:9)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.” (3:9-10)

B. INFERENCE: “‘Your words have been hard against me, says the Lord.’ But you say, ‘How have we spoken against you?’ ” (3:13)

1. FINDINGS: “You have said, ‘It is vain to serve God. What is the profit of our keeping his charge or of walking as in mourning before the Lord of hosts? And now we call the arrogant blessed.” (3:14)

2. CRITERIA: “Then those who feared the Lord spoke with one another. The Lord paid attention and heard them, and a book of remembrance was written before him of those who feared the Lord and esteemed his name. ‘They shall be mine,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘in the day when I make up my treasured possession, and I will spare them as a man spared his son who serves him.'” (3:16-18)

3. CONDITION: “Evildoers not only prosper but they put God to the test and they escape.'” (3:15)

4. CAUSE: “You have wearied the Lord with your words. But you say, ‘How have we wearied him?’ By saying, ‘Everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the Lord, and he delights in them.’ Or by asking, ‘Where is the God of justice?'” (2:17)

5. EFFECT: “You are cursed with a curse for you are robbing me, the whole nation of you.” (3:9)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “So guard yourselves in your spirit, and do not be faithless . . .” (2:16)

Malachi 4:1, The Great Day of the Lord

I. KEY TEXT: “For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble.” (4:1; 2 Peter 3)

A. INFERENCE: “The day that is coming shall set them ablaze, says the Lord of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch.” (4:1)

1. FINDINGS: “But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings. You shall go out leaping like calves from the stall.” (4:2)

2. CRITERIA: “And you shall tread down the wicked, for they will be ashes under the soles of your feet, on the day when I act, says the Lord of hosts.” (4:3)

3. CONDITION: “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes.” (4:5)

4. CAUSE: “. . . the day is coming, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble.” (4:1)

5. EFFECT: “And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction.” (4:6)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Remember the law of my servant Moses, the statutes and rules that I commanded him at Horeb for all Israel.” (4:4)

Matthew 1:1, The Genealogy of Jesus Christ

I. KEY TEXT: “The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.” (1:1)

A. INFERENCE: “So all the generations from Abraham to David were fourteen generations, and from David to the deportation to Babylon fourteen generations, and from the deportation to Babylon to the Christ fourteen generations.” (1:17)

1. FINDINGS: “Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way . . . Mary was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit.” (1:18)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . an angel of the Lord appeared to him (Joseph) in a dream, saying . . . do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.” (1:19-20)

3. CONDITION: “She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” (1:21)

4. CAUSE: “All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: ‘Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel.'” (1:23)

5. EFFECT: “And he called his name Jesus.” (1:25)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Do as the Lord commands . . .” (1:24)

Matthew 2:1, The Visit of the Wise Men

I. KEY TEXT: “Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men form the east came to Jerusalem, saying, ‘Where is he who has been born king of the Jews?” (2:1)

A. INFERENCE: “They told them (by Herod), ‘In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet: ‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means lest among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.'” (2:5-6)

1. FINDINGS: “Go and search diligently for the child (said Herod), and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.'” (2:8)

2. CRITERIA: “And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was.” (2:9)

3. CONDITION: “. . . when they saw the child with Mary his mother, they fell down and worshiped him. Then opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.” (2:11)

4. CAUSE: “And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.” (2:12)

5. EFFECT: “Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, ‘Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” (2:13)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, saying, ‘Rise take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child’s life are dead. And he went and lived in a city called Nazareth, that what was spoken by the prophets might be fulfilled: ‘He shall be called a Nazarene.'” (2:20, 23)

Week #121; Wed, Apr 22: Matthew 3–9

Week #121; Wed, Apr 22: Matthew 3:1—9:38

CHAPTER OBSERVATIONS:

Matthew 3, I. John the Baptist Prepares the Way; II. The Baptism of Jesus

I. KEY TEXT: “In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.’” (3:1)

A. INFERENCE: “For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah when he said, ‘The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the Lord; make his paths straight.’” (3:2-3)

1. FINDINGS: “I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” (3:11)

2. CRITERIA: “His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.” (3:12)

3. CONDITION: “To the careless and secure, terror must be faced. Without the Holy Spirit, there is no salvation.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Corrupt hearts cannot produce good fruit unless regeneration by the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “The purifying and cleansing power of the Holy Spirit alone can produce that purity of heart, and those holy affection, which accompany salvation. At Christ’s baptism there was a manifestation of the three Persons in the sacred Trinity.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Listen to the voice of John the Baptist.” (3:2-3)

II. KEY TEXT: “Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him.” (3:13)

B. INFERENCE: “John would have prevented him, saying ‘I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?'” (3:14)

1. FINDINGS: “But Jesus answered him, ‘Let it be so now, for this it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.'” (3:15)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . to fulfill all righteousness.” (3:15)

3. CONDITION: “And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, ‘This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.'” (3:16-17)

4. CAUSE: “Our Lord Jesus looked upon it as well becoming him to fulfill all righteousness, to own every Divine institution, and to show his readiness to comply with all God’s righteous precepts. In and through Christ, the heavens are opened to the children of men.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “This descent of the Spirit upon Christ, showed that he was endued with his sacred influences without measure. Out of Christ, God is a consuming fire, but in Christ, a reconciled Father. This is the sum of the gospel, which we must by faith cheerfully embrace.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Listen to the voice of God.” (3:17)

Matthew 4:1, I. The Temptation of Jesus; II. Jesus Begins His Ministry; III. Jesus Calls the First Disciples; IV. Jesus Ministers to Great Crowds

I. KEY TEXT: “Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.” (4:1)

A. INFERENCE: “And the tempter came and said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.’ But he answered, ‘It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, ‘He will command his angels concerning you.’ and ‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’ Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, ‘All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.’ Then Jesus said to him, ‘Be gone, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.'” (4:3-10)

1. FINDINGS: “Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.” (4:11)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . yet what is a man profited if he gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Satan aimed in all his temptations, to bring Christ to sin against God.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Christ was succored after the temptation, for his encouragement to go on in his undertaking, and for our encouragement to trust in him; for as he knew, by experience, what it was to suffer, being tempted, so he knew what it was to be succored, being tempted . . .” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “. . . therefore we may expect, not only that he will feel for his tempted people, but that he will come to them with seasonable relief.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Reject all of Satan’s baits.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

II. KEY TEXT: “Now when he heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew into Galilee. And leaving Nazareth he went and lived in Capernaum by the sea, in the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali, so that what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled: ‘The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles–the people dwelling in darkness have seen a great light, and for those dwelling in the region and shadow of death, on them a light has dawned.'” (4:12-16)

A. INFERENCE: “From that time Jesus began to preach . . .” (4:17)

1. FINDINGS: “From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” (4:17)

2. CRITERIA: “Those who are without Christ, are in the dark. They were sitting in this condition, a contented posture; they chose it rather than light; they were willingly ignorant. When the gospel comes, light comes; when it comes to any place, when it comes to any soul, it makes day there. Light discovers and directs; so does the gospel.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “The doctrine of repentance is right gospel doctrine. Not only the austere John the Baptist, but the gracious Jesus, preached repentance. There is still the same reason to do so. The kingdom of heaven was not reckoned to be fully come, till the pouring out of the Holy Spirit after Christ’s ascension.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “The people dwelling in darkness . . . ” (4:12-16)

5. EFFECT: “. . . for those dwelling in the region and shadow of death, on them a light has dawned.” (4:12-16)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Come to the light.” (4:12-16)

III. KEY TEXT: “While walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. And he said to them, ‘Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.’ Immediately they left their nets and followed him. And going on from there he saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets, and he called them. Immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.” (4:18)

A. INFERENCE: “When Christ began to preach, he began to gather disciples, who should be hearers, and afterwards preachers of his doctrine, who should be witnesses of his miracles, and afterwards testify concerning them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

1. FINDINGS: “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” (4:19)

2. CRITERIA: “Immediately . . .” (4:20, 22)

3. CONDITION: “Christ chooses the foolish things of the world to confound the wise.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “When Christ began to preach, he began to gather disciples, who should be hearers, and afterwards preachers of his doctrine, who should be witnesses of his miracles, and afterwards testify concerning them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “This instance of the power of the Lord Jesus encourages us to depend upon his grace. He speaks, and it is done.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Am I in Christ? is a very needful question to ask ourselves; and, next to that, Am I in my calling?” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

IV. KEY TEXT: “And he went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people.” (4:23)

A. INFERENCE: “So his fame spread throughout all Syria, and they brought him all the sick, those afflicted with various diseases and pains, those oppressed by demons, epileptics, and paralytics, and he healed them.” (4:24)

1. FINDINGS: “. . . and he healed them.” (4:24)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction . . .” (4:23)

3. CONDITION: “Wherever Christ went, he confirmed his Divine mission by miracles, which were emblems of the healing power of his doctrine, and the influences of the Spirit which accompanied it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Christ healed all, and by thus curing bodily diseases, showed that his great errand into the world was to cure spiritual maladies.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “. . . Christ came to take away sin, and so to heal the soul.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Proclaim the gospel of the kingdom. (4:23)

Matthew 5:1, I. The Sermon on the Mount; II. Salt and Light; III. Christ Came to Fulfill the Law; IV. Anger; V. Lust; VI. Divorce; VII. Oaths; VIII. Retaliation; IX. Love Your Enemies

I. KEY TEXT: “Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, his disciples came to him.” (5:1)

A. INFERENCE: “And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying: 1. Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 2. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. 3. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. 4. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. 5. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. 6. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy. 7. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. 8. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. 9. Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 10. Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.” (5:2-11)

1. FINDINGS: “Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” (5:12)

2. CRITERIA: “Our Savior here gives ten characters of blessed people, which represent to us the principal graces of a Christian.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Heaven is the joy of our Lord; a mountain of joy . . .” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “His mission to not lose any of those He was given.” (John 6:39)

5. EFFECT: “May we find mercy from the Lord; may we be owned as his children, and inherit his kingdom. With these enjoyments and hopes, we may cheerfully welcome low or painful circumstances.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Follow Jesus; be a messenger of His gospel.” (4:19)

II. KEY TEXT: “You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.” (5:13)

A. INFERENCE: “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.” (5:15)

1. FINDINGS: “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” (5:16)

2. CRITERIA: “Mankind, lying in ignorance and wickedness, were as a vast heap, ready to putrefy; but Christ sent forth his disciples, by their lives and doctrines to season it with knowledge and grace.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “What is between God and our souls, must be kept to ourselves; but that which is of itself open to the sight of men, we must study to make suitable to our profession, and praiseworthy.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “We must aim at the glory of God.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.” (1 Peter 2:12)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.” (John 15:8)

III. KEY TEXT: “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.” (5:17)

A. INFERENCE: “For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished.” (5:18)

1. FINDINGS: “Therefore whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” (5:19)

2. CRITERIA: “For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and the Pharisees you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” (5:20)

3. CONDITION: “Let none suppose that Christ allows his people to trifle with any commands of God’s holy law. No sinner partakes of Christ’s justifying righteousness, till he repents of his evil deeds. The mercy revealed in the gospel leads the believer to still deeper self-abhorrence.” (Mathew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “The law is the Christian’s rule of duty, and he delights therein. If a man, pretending to be Christ’s disciple, encourages himself in any allowed disobedience to the holy law of God, or teaches others to do the same, whatever his station or reputation among men may be, he can be no true disciple” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Christ’s righteousness, imputed to us by faith alone, is needed by every one that enters the kingdom of grace or of glory; but the new creation of the heart to holiness, produces a thorough change in a man’s temper and conduct.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Change, embrace the law.” (Romans 10:3)

IV. KEY TEXT: “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment. But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever say, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire.'” (5:21-22)

A. INFERENCE: “So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.” (5:23-24)

1. FINDINGS: “Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison.” (5:25)

2. CRITERIA: “Truly, I say to you, you will never get out until you have paid the last penny.” (5:26)

3. CONDITION: “The Jewish teachers had taught, that nothing except actual murder was forbidden by the sixth commandment. Thus they explained away its spiritual meaning. Christ showed the full meaning of this commandment; according to which we must be judged hereafter, and therefore ought to be ruled now.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “We ought carefully to preserve Christian love and peace with all our brethren; and if at any time there is a quarrel, we should confess our fault, humble ourselves to our brother, making or offering satisfaction for wrong done in word or deed: and we should do this quickly; because, till this is done, we are unfit for communion with God in holy ordinances.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “And when we are preparing for any religious exercises, it is good for us to make that an occasion of serious reflection and self-examination. What is here said is very applicable to our being reconciled to God through Christ. While we are alive, we are in the way to his judgment-seat; after death, it will be too late. When we consider the importance of the case, and the uncertainty of life, how needful it is to seek peace with God, without delay!” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Preserve Christian love.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

V. KEY TEXT: “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” (5:27-28)

A. INFERENCE: “If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that you whole body go into hell.” (5:29-30)

1. FINDINGS: “Heart.” (5:28)

2. CRITERIA: “Victory over the desires of the heart, must be attended with painful exertions. But it must be done.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Every thing is bestowed to save us from our sins, not in them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “All our senses and powers must be kept from those things which lead to transgression.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Those who lead others into temptation to sin, by dress or in other ways, or leave them in it, or expose them to it, make themselves guilty of their sin, and will be accountable for it. If painful operations are submitted to, that our lives may be saved, what ought our minds to shrink from, when the salvation of our souls is concerned?” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “There is tender mercy under all the Divine requirements, and the grace and consolations of the Spirit will enable us to attend to them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

VI. KEY TEXT: “It was also said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.'” (5:31)

A. INFERENCE: “But I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, makes her commit adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.” (5:32)

1. FINDINGS: “What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate. They (Pharisees) said to him, ‘Why then did Moses command one to give a certificate of divorce and to send her away?'” (Matthew 19:6-7)

2. CRITERIA: “He said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.” (Matthew 19:8-9)

3. CONDITION: “He answered, ‘Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh? So they are no longer two but one flesh.” (Matthew 19:4-5)

4. CAUSE: “So they are no longer two but one flesh.” (Matthew 19:5)

5. EFFECT: “What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” (Matthew 19:19:6)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” (Matthew 19:19:6)

VII. KEY TEXT: “Again you have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.” (5:33)

A. INFERENCE: “But I say to you, Do not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. And do not take an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black.” (5:34-36)

1. FINDINGS: “Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil.” (5:37)

2. CRITERIA: “The worse men are, the less they are bound by oaths; the better they are, the less there is need for them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Our Lord does not enjoin the precise terms wherein we are to affirm or deny, but such a constant regard to truth as would render oaths unnecessary.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “There is no reason to consider that solemn oaths in a court of justice, or on other proper occasions, are wrong, provided they are taken with due reverence.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “But all oaths taken without necessity, or in common conversation, must be sinful, as well as all those expressions which are appeals to God, though persons think thereby to evade the guilt of swearing.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil.” (5:37)

VIII. KEY TEXT: “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.'” (5:38)

A. INFERENCE: “But, I say to you, ‘Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles.'” (5:39-41)

1. FINDINGS: “Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.” (5:42)

2. CRITERIA: “The plain instruction is, Suffer any injury that can be born, for the sake of peace, committing your concerns to the Lord’s keeping.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “And the sum of all is, that Christians must avoid disputing and striving. ” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “If any say, Flesh and blood cannot pass by such an affront, let them remember, that flesh and blood shall not inherit the kingdom of God . . . (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “. . . and those who act upon right principles will have most peace and comfort.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Do not resist the one who is evil.” (5:39)

IX. KEY TEXT: “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.'” (5:43)

A. INFERENCE: “But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.” (5:44-45)

1. FINDINGS: “For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same?” (5:46-47)

2. CRITERIA: “You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (5:48)

3. CONDITION: “The Jewish teachers by “neighbor” understood only those who were of their own country, nation, and religion, whom they were pleased to look upon as their friends. The Lord Jesus teaches that we must do all the real kindness we can to all, especially to their souls.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “We must pray for them. While many will render good for good, we must render good for evil; and this will speak a nobler principle than most men act by.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “It is the duty of Christians to desire, and aim at, and press towards perfection in grace and holiness.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “. . . we must study to conform ourselves to the example of our heavenly Father. (1 Peter 1:15, 16)

Matthew 6:1, I. Giving to the Needy; II. The Lord’s Prayer; III. Fasting; IV. Lay Up Treasures in Heaven; V. Do Not Be Anxious

I. KEY TEXT: “Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven.” (6:1)

A. INFERENCE: “Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.” (6:1-2)

1. FINDINGS: “But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” (6:3-4)

2. CRITERIA: “What we do, must be done from an inward principle, that we may be approved of God, not that we may be praised of men.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “When we take least notice of our good deeds ourselves, God takes most notice of them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “In these verses we are cautioned against hypocrisy in giving alms. Take heed of it. It is a subtle sin; and vain-glory creeps into what we do, before we are aware.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “He will reward thee; not as a master who gives his servant what he earns, and no more, but as a Father who gives abundantly to his son that serves him.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “. . . do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” (6:3-4)

II. KEY TEXT: “And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others.” (6:5)

A. INFERENCE: “Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.” (6:5)

1. FINDINGS: “But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” (6:6)

2. CRITERIA: “And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.” (6:7-8)

3. CONDITION: “Pray then like this: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” (6:9-13)

4. CAUSE: “For if you forgive others their trespasses your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” (6:14-15)

5. EFFECT: “Christ saw it needful to show his disciples what must commonly be the matter and method of their prayer. Not that we are tied up to the use of this only, or of this always; yet, without doubt, it is very good to use it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Use it, every word has a lesson in it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

III. KEY TEXT: “And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others.” (6:16)

A. INFERENCE: “But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret.” (6:17-18)

1. FINDINGS: “And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” (6:18)

2. CRITERIA: “Religious fasting is a duty required of the disciples of Christ, but it is not so much a duty itself, as a means to dispose us for other duties.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Fasting is the humbling of the soul, Psalms 35:13; that is the inside of the duty; let that, therefore, be thy principal care, and as to the outside of it, covet not to let it be seen.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “God sees in secret, and will reward openly.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “. . . covet not to let it be seen.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Fast privately and in secret.” (6:17-18)

IV. KEY TEXT: “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.” (6:19-20)

A. INFERENCE: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (6:21)

1. FINDINGS: “The eye is a lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness.” (6:22-23)

2. CRITERIA: “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.” (6:24)

3. CONDITION: “You cannot serve God and money.” (6:24)

4. CAUSE: “Worldly-mindedness is a common and fatal symptom of hypocrisy, for by no sin can Satan have a surer and faster hold of the soul, under the cloak of a profession of religion.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “There are treasures in heaven. It is our wisdom to give all diligence to make our title to eternal life sure through Jesus Christ, and to look on all things here below, as not worthy to be compared with it, and to be content with nothing short of it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “God requires the whole heart, and will not share it with the world.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

V. KEY TEXT: “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. ” (6:25)

A. INFERENCE: “Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” (6:26)

1. FINDINGS: “And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?” (6:27)

2. CRITERIA: “And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?” (6:28-30)

3. CONDITION: “Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink? or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” (6:31-33)

4. CAUSE: “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself.” (6:34)

5. EFFECT: “Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” (6:34)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Take no thought for your life. Not about the length of it; but refer it to God to lengthen or shorten it as he pleases; our times are in his hand, and they are in a good hand. Not about the comforts of this life; but leave it to God to make it bitter or sweet as he pleases.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

Matthew 7:1, I. Judging Others; II. Ask and It Will Be Given; III. The Golden Rule; IV. A Tree and Its Fruit; V. I Never Knew You; VI. Build Your House on the Rock; VII. The Authority of Jesus

I. KEY TEXT: “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.” (7:1-2)

A. INFERENCE: “Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” (7:3-5)

1. FINDINGS: “Do not give dogs what is holy, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, lest they trample them underfoot and turn to attack you.” (7:6)

2. CRITERIA: “We must judge ourselves, and judge of our own acts, but not make our word a law to everybody.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “It is as strange that a man can be in a sinful, miserable condition, and not be aware of it, as that a man should have a beam in his eye, and not consider it; but the god of this world blinds their minds.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “We must not make the worst of people.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Here is a good rule for reprovers; first reform thyself.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Reform thyself.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

II. KEY TEXT: “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” (7:1)

A. INFERENCE: “For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.” (7:8)

1. FINDINGS: “Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent?” (7:9-10)

2. CRITERIA: “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” (7:10-11)

3. CONDITION: “Prayer is the appointed means for obtaining what we need. Pray; pray often; make a business of prayer, and be serious and earnest in it. Ask, as a beggar asks alms. Ask, as a traveler asks the way. Seek, as for a thing of value that we have lost; or as the merchantman that seeks goodly pearls.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Knock, as he that desires to enter into the house knocks at the door. Sin has shut and barred the door against us; by prayer we knock.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “This is made to apply to all that pray aright; every one that asketh receiveth, whether Jew or Gentile, young or old, rich or poor, high or low, master or servant, learned or unlearned, all are alike welcome to the throne of grace, if they come in faith.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let us never suppose our heavenly Father would bid us pray, and then refuse to hear, or give us what would be hurtful.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

III. KEY TEXT: “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.” (7:12)

A. INFERENCE: “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.” (7:13)

1. FINDINGS: “We must, in our dealings with men, suppose ourselves in the same case and circumstances with those we have to do with, and act accordingly.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

2. CRITERIA: “Christ came to teach us, not only what we are to know and believe, but what we are to do; not only toward God, but toward men; not only toward those of our party and persuasion, but toward men in general, all with whom we have to do.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “We must do that to our neighbor which we ourselves acknowledge to be fit and reasonable.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “There are but two ways right and wrong, good and evil; the way to heaven and the way to hell; in the one or other of these all are walking: there is no middle place hereafter, no middle way now.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Self must be denied, the body kept under, and corruptions mortified. Daily temptations must be resisted; duties must be done. We must watch in all things, and walk with care; and we must go through much tribulation.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “And yet this way should invite us all; it leads to life: to present comfort in the favor of God, which is the life of the soul; to eternal bliss, the hope of which at the end of our way, should make all the difficulties of the road easy to us.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

IV. KEY TEXT: “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.” (7:15)

A. INFERENCE: “You will recognize them by their fruits.” (7:16)

1. FINDINGS: “Are grapes gathered from thorn-bushes, or figs from thistles?” (7:16)

2. CRITERIA: “So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit.” (7:17)

3. CONDITION: “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.” (7:19)

4. CAUSE: “Christ here shows that it will not be enough to own him for our Master, only in word and tongue. It is necessary to our happiness that we believe in Christ, that we repent of sin, that we live a holy life, that we love one another. This is his will, even our sanctification.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Thus you will recognize them by their fruits.” (7:20)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let every one that names the name of Christ, depart from all sin.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

V. KEY TEXT: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” (7:21)

A. INFERENCE: “On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?'” (7:22)

1. FINDINGS: “And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.'” (7:23)

2. CRITERIA: “Let every one that names the name of Christ, depart from all sin.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “There are others, whose religion rests in bare hearing, and it goes no further . . .” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “. . . their heads are filled with empty notions.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “There are two sorts of hearers.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “. . . do the will of our Father who is in heaven. (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

VI. KEY TEXT: “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (7:24)

A. INFERENCE: “And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock.” (7:25)

1. FINDINGS: “And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.” (7:26)

2. CRITERIA: “And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.” (7:27)

3. CONDITION: “This parable teaches us to hear and do the sayings of the Lord Jesus: some may seem hard to flesh and blood, but they must be done.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Christ is laid for a foundation, and every thing besides Christ is sand. Some build their hopes upon worldly prosperity; others upon an outward profession of religion. Upon these they venture; but they are all sand, too weak to bear such a fabric as our hopes of heaven.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “There is a storm coming that will try every man’s work. When God takes away the soul, where is the hope of the hypocrite? The house fell in the storm, when the builder had most need of it, and expected it would be a shelter to him. It fell when it was too late to build another.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “May the Lord make us wise builders for eternity.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

VII. KEY TEXT: “And when Jesus finished these sayings, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, for he was teaching them as one who had authority, and not as their scribes.” (7:28-29)

A. INFERENCE: “The multitudes were astonished at the wisdom and power of Christ’s doctrine. And this sermon, ever so often read over, is always new.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

1. FINDINGS: “Every word proves its Author to be Divine.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

2. CRITERIA: “Let us be more and more decided and earnest, making some one or other of these blessednesses and Christian graces the main subject of our thoughts, even for weeks together.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “”. . . for he was teaching them as one who had authority, and not as their scribes.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “The multitudes were astonished at the wisdom and power of Christ’s doctrine.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “May the Lord make us wise builders for eternity. Then nothing shall separate us from the love of Christ Jesus.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let us not rest in general and confused desires after them, whereby we grasp at all, but catch nothing.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

Matthew 8:1, I. Jesus Cleanses a Leper; II. The Faith of a Centurion; III. Jesus Heals Many; IV. The Cost of Following Jesus; V. Jesus Calms a Storm; VI. Jesus Heals Two Men with Demons

I. KEY TEXT: “When he came down from the mountain, great crowds followed him.” (8:1)

A. INFERENCE: “And behold, a leper came to him and knelt before him, saying, ‘Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” (8:2)

1. FINDINGS: “And Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, ‘I will; be clean.’ And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.” (8:3)

2. CRITERIA: “And Jesus said to him, ‘See that you say nothing to anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer the gift that Moses commanded, for a proof to them.” (8:4)

3. CONDITION: “This cleansing directs us, not only to apply to Christ, who has power over bodily diseases, for the cure of them, but it also teaches us in what manner to apply to him.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “When we cannot be sure of God’s will, we may be sure of his wisdom and mercy. No guilt is so great, but there is that in Christ’s blood which atones for it; no corruption so strong, but there is that in his grace which can subdue it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “To be made clean we must commend ourselves to his pity; we cannot demand it as a debt, but we must humbly request it as a favor. Those who by faith apply to Christ for mercy and grace, may be sure that he is freely willing to give them the mercy and grace they thus seek.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “And those afflictions are blessed that bring us to know Christ, and cause us to seek help and salvation from him. Let those who are cleansed from their spiritual leprosy, go to Christ’s ministers and open their case, that they may advise, comfort, and pray for them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

II. KEY TEXT: “When he entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him, appealing to him, ‘Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, suffering terribly.’ And he said to him, ‘I will come and heal him.'” (8:5-7)

A. INFERENCE: “But the centurion replied, ‘Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but only say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I too am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes, and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.'” (8:8-9)

1. FINDINGS: “When Jesus heard this, he marveled and said to those who followed him, ‘Truly, I tell you, with no one in Israel have I found such faith.” (8:10)

2. CRITERIA: “And to the centurion Jesus said, ‘Go; let it be done for you as you have believed.'” (8:13)

3. CONDITION: “And the servant was healed at that very moment.” (8:13)

4. CAUSE: “. . . you have believed.” (8:13)

5. EFFECT: “. . . the servant was healed at that very moment.” (8:13)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “What was said to him, is said to all, Believe, and ye shall receive; only believe. See the power of Christ, and the power of faith. The healing of our souls is at once the effect and evidence of our interest in the blood of Christ.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

III. KEY TEXT: “And when Jesus entered Peter’s house, he saw his mother-in-law lying sick with a fever.” (8:14)

A. INFERENCE: “He touched her hand, and the fever left her, and she rose and began to serve him.” (8:15)

1. FINDINGS: “That evening they brought to him many who were oppressed by demons, and he cast out the spirits with a word and heled all who were sick.” (8:16)

2. CRITERIA: “This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah: ‘He took our illnesses and bore our diseases.'” (8:17)

3. CONDITION: “In spiritual healing, the Scripture speaks the word, the Spirit gives the touch, touches the heart, touches the hand.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Jesus Christ bore our sicknesses and carried our sorrows, to support and comfort us” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “He healed all that were sick” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let us not grudge labor, trouble, or expense in doing good to others.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

IV. KEY TEXT: “Now when Jesus saw a crowd around him, he gave orders to go over to the other side.” (8:18)

A. INFERENCE: “And a scribe came up and said to him, ‘Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.'” (8:19)

1. FINDINGS: “And Jesus said to him, ‘Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.’ Another of the disciples said to him, ‘Lord, let me first go and bury my father.’ And Jesus said to him, Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead.'” (8:20-22)

2. CRITERIA: “Many resolutions for religion are produced by sudden conviction, and taken up without due consideration; these come to nothing.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Christ saw his heart, and answered to its thoughts, and therein teaches all how to come to Christ.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “His resolve seems to have been from a worldly, covetous principle; but Christ had not a place to lay his head on, and if he follows him, he must not expect to fare better than he fared. We have reason to think this scribe went away. Another was too slow. Delay in doing is as bad on the one hand, as hastiness in resolving is on the other. He asked leave to attend his father to his grave, and then he would be at Christ’s service. This seemed reasonable, yet it was not right. He had not true zeal for the work.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “The cost of following Jesus cannot be conditional.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Follow with zeal.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

V. KEY TEXT: “And when he got into the boat, his disciples followed him. And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep.” (8:24)

A. INFERENCE: “And they went and woke him, saying, ‘Save us, Lord; we are perishing.’ And he said to them, ‘Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?’ ” (8:25-26)

1. FINDINGS: “Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.” (8:26)

2. CRITERIA: “And the men marveled, saying, ‘What sort of man is this, that even winds and sea obey him?” (8:27)

3. CONDITION: “It is a comfort to those who go down to the sea in ships, and are often in perils there, to reflect that they have a Savior to trust in and pray to, who knows what it is to be on the water, and to be in storms there.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Those who are passing with Christ over the ocean of this world, must expect storms.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Many that have true faith, are weak in it. Christ’s disciples are apt to be disquieted with fears in a stormy day; to torment themselves that things are bad with them, and with dismal thoughts that they will be worse.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Great storms of doubt and fear in the soul, under the power of the spirit of bondage, sometimes end in a wonderful calm, created and spoken by the Spirit of adoption. Wait on the Lord.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

VI. KEY TEXT: “And when he came to the other side, to the country of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men met him, coming out of the tombs, so fierce that no one could pass that way.” (8:28)

A. INFERENCE: “And behold, they cried out, ‘What have you to do with us, O Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?'” (8:29)

1. FINDINGS: “Now a herd of many pigs was feeding at some distance from them. And the demons begged him , saying, ‘If you cast us out, send us away into the herd of pigs.'” (8:30-31)

2. CRITERIA: “And he said to them, ‘Go.'” (8:32)

3. CONDITION: “So they came out and went into the pigs, and behold, the whole herd rushed down the steep bank into the sea and drowned in the waters.” (8:32)

4. CAUSE: “The herdsmen fled, and going into the city they told everything, especially what had happened to the demon-possessed men.” (8:33)

5. EFFECT: “And behold, all the city came out to meet Jesus, and when they saw him, they begged him to leave their region.” (8:34)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “There are a great many who prefer their swine before the Savior, and so come short of Christ and salvation by him. They desire Christ to depart out of their hearts, and will not suffer his word to have place in them, because he and his word would destroy their brutish lusts; follow Christ, not swine.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

Matthew 9:1, I. Jesus Heals a Paralytic; II. Jesus Calls Matthew; III. A Question About Fasting; IV. A Girl Restored to Life and a Woman Healed; V. Jesus heals Two Blind Men; VI. Jesus Heals a Man Unable to Speak; VII. The Harvest is Plentiful, the Laborers Few

I. KEY TEXT: “And getting into a boat he crossed over and came to his own city. And behold, some people brought to him a paralytic, lying on a bed. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, ‘Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven.'” (9:1-2)

A. INFERENCE: “And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, ‘This man is blaspheming.'” (9:3)

1. FINDINGS: “But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, ‘Why do you think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’?” (9:4-5)

2. CRITERIA: “‘But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins,’ he then said to the paralytic, ‘Rise, pick up you bed and go home.’ And he rose and went home.” (9:6-7)

3. CONDITION: “When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.” (9:8)

4. CAUSE: “God must be glorified in all the power that is given to do good.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Christ designed to show that his great errand to the world was, to save his people from their sins. He turned from disputing with the scribes, and spake healing to the sick man.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “The great intention of the blessed Jesus in the redemption he wrought, is to separate our hearts from sin. Our Lord Jesus has perfect knowledge of all that we say within ourselves. There is a great deal of evil in sinful thoughts, which is very offensive to the Lord Jesus.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

II. KEY TEXT: “As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, ‘Follow me.’ And he rose and followed him.” (9:9)

A. INFERENCE: “And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples.” (9:10)

1. FINDINGS: “And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, ‘Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?'” (9:11)

2. CRITERIA: “But when he heard it, he said, ‘Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.'” (9:12-13)

3. CONDITION: “The Pharisees despised Christ because they thought themselves whole; but the poor publicans and sinners felt that they wanted instruction and amendment.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Christ’s conversing with sinners is here called mercy; for to promote the conversion of souls is the greatest act of mercy.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “The gospel call is a call to repentance; a call to us to change our minds, and to change our ways. If the children of men had not been sinners, there had been no need for Christ to come among them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let us examine whether we have found out our sickness, and have learned to follow the directions of our great Physician.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

III. KEY TEXT: “Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, ‘Why do we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?'” (9:14)

A. INFERENCE: “And Jesus said to them, ‘Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast.'” (9:15)

1. FINDINGS: “No one puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch tears away from the garment, and a worse tear is made. Neither is new wine put into old wineskins. If it is, the skins burst and the wine is spilled and the skins are destroyed.” (9:16-17)

2. CRITERIA: “‘But new wine is put into fresh wineskins, and so both are preserved.'” (9:17)

3. CONDITION: “Great caution and prudence are necessary, that young converts may not receive gloomy and forbidding ideas of the service of our Lord; but duties are to be urged as they are able to bear them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Though there is no doubt that Jesus and his disciples lived in a spare and frugal manner, it would be improper for his disciples to fast while they had the comfort of his presence.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “When he is with them, all is well. The presence of the sun makes day, and its absence produces night.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Preserve the present.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

IV. KEY TEXT: “While he was saying these things to them, behold, a ruler came in and knelt before him, saying, ‘My daughter has just died, but come and lay your hand on her, and she will live.'” (9:18)

A. INFERENCE: “Jesus rose and followed him, with his disciples.” (9:18)

1. FINDINGS: “And when Jesus came to the ruler’s house and saw the flute players and the crowd making a commotion, he said, ‘Go away, for the girl is not dead but sleeping.’ And they laughed at him.” (9:23-24)

2. CRITERIA: “But when the crowd had been put outside, he went in and took her by the hand, and the girl arose.” (9:25)

3. CONDITION: “Dead souls are not raised to spiritual life, unless Christ take them by the hand: it is done in the day of his power.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “If this single instance of Christ’s raising one newly dead so increased his fame, what will be his glory when all that are in their graves shall hear his voice, and come forth; those that have done good to the resurrection of life, and those that have done evil to the resurrection of damnation!” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “And the report of this went through all that district.” (9:26)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “A poor woman applied herself to Christ, and received mercy from him by the way. If we do but touch, as it were, the hem of Christ’s garment by living faith, our worst evils will be healed; there is no other real cure, nor need we fear his knowing things which are a grief and burden to us, but which we would not tell to any earthly friend. Embrace the faith of the ruler and the woman who touched his garment.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

V. KEY TEXT: “And as Jesus passed on from there, two blind men followed him, crying aloud, ‘Have mercy on us, Son of David.'” (9:27)

A. INFERENCE: “When he entered the house, the blind men came to him, and Jesus said to them, ‘Do you believe that I am able to do this?’ They said to him, ‘Yes, Lord.'” (9:28)

1. FINDINGS: “Then he touched their eyes, saying, ‘According to your faith be it done to you.'” (9:29)

2. CRITERIA: “And whatever our wants and burdens are, we need no more for supply and support, than to share in the mercy of our Lord Jesus. In Christ is enough for all.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “And their eyes were opened.” (9:30)

4. CAUSE: “. . . their faith . . . ” (9:29)

5. EFFECT: “And Jesus sternly warned them, ‘See that no one knows about it.’ But they went away and spread his fame through all that district.” (9:30-31)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Do ye believe?” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

VI. KEY TEXT: “As they were going away, behold, a demon-oppressed man who was mute was brought to him.” (9:32)

A. INFERENCE: “And when the demon had been cast out, the mute man spoke. And the crowds marveled, saying, ‘Never was anything like this seen in Israel.” (9:33)

1. FINDINGS: “But the Pharisees said, ‘He casts out demons by the prince of demons.'” (9:34)

2. CRITERIA: “Christ’s cures strike at the root, and remove the effect by taking away the cause; they open the lips, by breaking Satan’s power in the soul.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “. . . the mute man spoke . . .” (9:33)

4. CAUSE: “. . . by taking away the cause . . . ” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Christ’s cures strike at the root, and remove the effect by taking away the cause.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Place your faith in Jesus.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

VII. KEY TEXT: “And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction.” (9:35)

A. INFERENCE: “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.” (9:36)

1. FINDINGS: “Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.'” (9:37)

2. CRITERIA: “Christ had compassion on the people as sheep scattered, as men perishing for lack of knowledge.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “The multitudes desirous of spiritual instruction formed a plenteous harvest, needing many active laborers; but few deserved that character. Christ is the Lord of the harvest.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “To this day vast multitudes are as sheep not having a shepherd, and we should have compassion and do all we can to help them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “It is a sign that God is about to bestow some special mercy upon a people, when he stirs them up to pray for it. And commissions given to laborers in answer to prayer, are most likely to be successful.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let us pray that many may be raised up and sent forth, who will labor in bringing souls to Christ.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

Week #122; Wed, Apr 29: Matthew 10–14

Week #122; Wed, Apr 29: Matthew 10:1–14:36

CHAPTER OBSERVATIONS:

Matthew 10:1, I. The Twelve Apostles; II. Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Apostles; III. Persecution Will Come; IV. Have No Fear; V. Not Peace, but a Sword; VI. Rewards

I. KEY TEXT (The Twelve Apostles): “And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction.” (10:1)

A. INFERENCE: “And he went up on the mountain and called to him those whom he desired, and they came to him. And he appointed twelve (whom he also named apostles) so that they might be with him and he might send them out to preach and have authority to cast out demons.” (Mark 3:13-15)

1. FINDINGS: “And he called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits.” (Mark 6:7)

2. CRITERIA: “He charged them to take nothing for their journey except a staff–no bread, no bag, no money in their belts–but to wear sandals and not put on two tunics.” (Mark 6:8-9)

3. CONDITION: “And he said to them, ‘Whenever you enter a house, stay there until you depart from there. And if any place will not receive you and they will not listen to you depart from there. And if any place will not receive you and they will not listen to you, when you leave, shake off the dust that is on your feet as a testimony against them.” (Mark 6:10-13)

4. CAUSE: “So they went out and proclaimed that people should repent. And they cast out many demons and anointed with oil many who were sick and healed them.” (Mark 6:12-13)

5. EFFECT: “The word “apostle” signifies messenger; they were Christ’s messengers, sent forth to proclaim his kingdom. Christ gave them power to heal all manner of sickness. In the grace of the gospel there is a salve for every sore, a remedy for every malady. There is no spiritual disease, but there is power in Christ for the cure of it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “. . . to heal and cast out demons.” (Matthew 10:1)

II. KEY TEXT (Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Apostles): “These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them, ‘Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying; give without pay. Acquire no gold nor silver nor copper for your belts, no bag for your journey, nor two tunics nor sandals, nor a staff, for the laborers deserves his food. And whatever town or village you enter, find out who is worthy in it and stay there until you depart. As you enter the house, greet it. And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town.” (10:5-14)

A. INFERENCE: “‘Truly, I say to you, it will be more bearable on that day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town.'” (10:15)

1. FINDINGS: “. . . go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.'” (10:6-7)

2. CRITERIA: “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons.” (10:8)

3. CONDITION: “You received without paying; give without pay. Acquire no gold nor silver nor copper for your belts, no bag for your journey, nor two tunics nor sandals, nor a staff, for the laborers deserves his food. And whatever town or village you enter, find out who is worthy in it and stay there until you depart. As you enter the house, greet it. And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town.” (10:8-14)

4. CAUSE: “Wherever they went they must proclaim, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. They preached, to establish the faith; the kingdom, to animate the hope; of heaven, to inspire the love of heavenly things, and the contempt of earthly; which is at hand, that men may prepare for it without delay.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Truly, I say to you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town.” (10:15)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Proclaim, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.'” (10:7)

III. KEY TEXT (Persecution Will Come): “‘Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. Beware of men, for they will deliver you over to courts and flog you in their synagogues, and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear witness before them and the Gentiles.'” (10:16-18)

A. INFERENCE: “When they deliver you over, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour. For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” (10:19-20)

1. FINDINGS: “Brother will deliver brother over to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death, and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake.” (10:21-22)

2. CRITERIA: “But the one who endures to the end will be saved.” (10:22)

3. CONDITION: “When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next, for truly, I say to you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.” (10:23)

4. CAUSE: “A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master.” (10:24-25)

5. EFFECT: “If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household.” (10:25)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Endure to the end.” (10:22)

IV. KEY TEXT (Have No Fear): “So have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known.” (10:26)

A. INFERENCE: “What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered proclaim on the housetops.” (10:27)

1. FINDINGS: “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul.” (10:28)

2. CRITERIA: “Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (10:28)

3. CONDITION: “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered.” (10:29-30)

4. CAUSE: “Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” (10:31)

5. EFFECT: “So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.” (10:32)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Christ does not say that they deserve a reward; for we cannot merit any thing from the hand of God; but they shall receive a reward from the free gift of God. Let us boldly confess Christ, and show love to him in all things.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

V. KEY TEXT (Not Peace; but a Sword): “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.” (10:34)

A. INFERENCE: “For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household.” (10:35-36)

1. FINDINGS: “Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” (10:37)

2. CRITERIA: “And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.” (10:38)

3. CONDITION: “Whoever finds his life will lose it and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” (10:39)

4. CAUSE: “It is our duty, not only to believe in Christ, but to profess that faith, in suffering for him, when we are called to it, as well as in serving him. That denial of Christ only is here meant which is persisted in, and that confession only can have the blessed recompense here promised, which is the real and constant language of faith and love. Religion is worth every thing; all who believe the truth of it, will come up to the price, and make every thing else yield to it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Christ will lead us through sufferings, to glory with him. Those are best prepared for the life to come, that sit most loose to this present life.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Lose our life for His sake. See graphic illustration at: http://jwaministries.net/Cartesian_3D_Cube.gif

VI. KEY TEXT (Rewards): “Whoever receives you receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent me.” (10:40)

A. INFERENCE: “The one who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and the one who receives a righteous person because he is a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward.” (10:41)

1. FINDINGS: “And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.” (10:42)

2. CRITERIA: “Though the kindness done to Christ’s disciples be ever so small, yet if there be occasion for it, and ability to do no more, it shall be accepted. Let us boldly confess Christ, and show love to him in all things.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Christ does not say that they deserve a reward; for we cannot merit any thing from the hand of God; but they shall receive a reward from the free gift of God.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “‘The one who hears you hears me, and the one who rejects you rejects me, and the one who rejects me rejects him who sent me.'” (Luke 10:16)

5. EFFECT: “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.” (John 13:20)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let us boldly confess Christ, and show love to him in all things.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)”

Matthew 11:1, I. Messengers from John the Baptist; II. Woe to Unrepentant Cities; III. Come to Me; I Will Give You Rest

I. KEY TEXT (Messengers from John the Baptist): “Now when John heard in prison about the deeds of the Christ, he sent word by his disciples and said to him, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?'” (11:2)

A. INFERENCE: “‘Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them.'” (11:4-5)

1. FINDINGS: “‘And blessed is the one who is not offended by me.'” (11:6)

2. CRITERIA: “Some think that John sent this inquiry for his own satisfaction. Where there is true faith, yet there may be a mixture of unbelief. The remaining unbelief of good men may sometimes, in an hour of temptation, call in question the most important truths.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “But we hope that John’s faith did not fail in this matter, and that he only desired to have it strengthened and confirmed. Others think that John sent his disciples to Christ for their satisfaction. Christ points them to what they heard and saw.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “As they went away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds concerning John: ‘What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? What then did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in kings houses. What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. This is he of whom it is written. ‘Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way before you.'” (11:7-10)

5. EFFECT: “Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has arisen no one greater than John the Baptist. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” (11:11)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “For all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John, and if you are willing to accept it, he is Elijah who is to come. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” (11:14-15)

II. KEY TEXT (Woe to Unrepentant Cities): “Then he began to denounce the cities where most of his mighty works had been done, because they did not repent.” (11:20)

A. INFERENCE: “‘Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I tell you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for Tyre and Sidon than for you.” And you, Capernaum, will you be exalted to heaven? You will be brought down to Hades. For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I tell you that it will be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom than for you. (11:21-24)

1. FINDINGS: “Woe to you . . . ” (11:21)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . on the day of judgment.” (11:22)

3. CONDITION: “. . . if . . . it would . . .” (11:23)

4. CAUSE: “. . . it will . . . than . . .” (11:24)

5. EFFECT: “The Lord exercises his almighty power, yet he punishes none more than they deserve, and never withholds the knowledge of the truth from those who long after it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentry)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Long for the knowledge of truth.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

III. KEY TEXT (Come to Me; I Will Give You Rest): “At that time Jesus declared, ‘I thank you Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children; yes, Father, for such was you gracious will.” (11:25-26)

A. INFERENCE: “All things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.” (11:27)

1. FINDINGS: “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (11:28-29)

2. CRITERIA: “For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (11:30)

3. CONDITION: “It becomes children to be grateful. When we come to God as a Father, we must remember that he is Lord of heaven and earth, which obliges us to come to him with reverence as to the sovereign Lord of all; yet with confidence, as one able to defend us from evil, and to supply us with all good. Our blessed Lord added a remarkable declaration, that the Father had delivered into his hands all power, authority, and judgment. We are indebted to Christ for all the revelation we have of God the Father’s will and love, ever since Adam sinned.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Those who labor to establish their own righteousness also labor in vain. The convinced sinner is heavy-laden with guilt and terror; and the tempted and afflicted believer has labors and burdens. Christ invites all to come to him for rest to their souls. He alone gives this invitation; men come to him, when, feeling their guilt and misery, and believing his love and power to help, they seek him in fervent prayer. Thus it is the duty and interest of weary and heavy-laden sinners, to come to Jesus Christ.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “This is the gospel call; Whoever will, let him come. All who thus come will receive rest as Christ’s gift, and obtain peace and comfort in their hearts. But in coming to him they must take his yoke, and submit to his authority. They must learn of him all things, as to their comfort and obedience. He accepts the willing servant, however imperfect the services. Here we may find rest for our souls, and here only. Nor need we fear his yoke. His commandments are holy, just, and good. It requires self-denial, and exposes to difficulties, but this is abundantly repaid, even in this world, by inward peace and joy.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let us come to him daily, for deliverance from wrath and guilt, from sin and Satan, from all our cares, fears, and sorrows.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

Matthew 12:1, I. Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath; II. A Man with a Withered Hand; III. God’s Chosen Servant; IV. Blasphemy Against the Holy Spirit; V. A Tree Is Known by Its Fruit; VI. The Sign of Jonah; VII. Return of an Unclean Spirit; VIII. Jesus’ Mother and Brothers

I. KEY TEXT (Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath): “At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain and to eat.” (12:1)

A. INFERENCE: “But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, ‘Look, your disciples are doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath.” (12:2)

1. FINDINGS: “He said to them, ‘Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, and those who were with him: how he entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests? Or have you not read in the Law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath and are guiltless?” (12:3-5)

2. CRITERIA: “I tell you, something greater than the temple is here. And if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltless. For the Son of Man is lord of the Sabbath.” (12:6-8)

3. CONDITION: “Those labors are lawful on the Sabbath day which are necessary, and Sabbath rest is to forward, not to hinder Sabbath worship. Needful provision for health and food is to be made; but when servants are kept at home, and families become a scene of hurry and confusion on the Lord’s day, to furnish a feast for visitors, or for indulgence, the case is very different. Such things as these, and many others common among professors, are to be blamed. The resting on the Sabbath was ordained for man’s good, Deuteronomy 5:14. No law must be understood so as to contradict its own end. And as Christ is the Lord of the Sabbath, it is fit the day and the work of it should be dedicated to him.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “The latter glory of this house shall be greater than the former, says the Lord of hosts. And in this place I will give peace, declares the Lord of hosts.” (Hag. 2:9)

5. EFFECT: “Behold, I send my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. And the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant in whom you delight, behold, he is coming, says the Lord of hosts.” (Mal. 3:1)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Needful provision for health and food is to be made; but when servants are kept at home, and families become a scene of hurry and confusion on the Lord’s day, to furnish a feast for visitors, or for indulgence, the case is very different. Such things as these, and many others common among professors, are to be blamed. The resting on the Sabbath was ordained for man’s good, Deuteronomy 5:14. No law must be understood so as to contradict its own end. And as Christ is the Lord of the Sabbath, it is fit the day and the work of it should be dedicated to him.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

II. KEY TEXT (A Man with a Withered Hand): “He went on from there and entered their synagogue. And a man was there with a withered hand.” (12:9-10)

A. INFERENCE: “And they asked him, ‘Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?’ so that they might accuse him.” (12:10)

1. FINDINGS: “He said to them, ‘Which one of you who has a sheep, if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not take hold of it and lift it out?” (12:11)

2. CRITERIA: “Of how much more value is a men than a sheep! So it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.” (12:12)

3. CONDITION: “Then he said to the man, ‘Stretch out your hand.” And the man stretched it out, and it was restored, healthy like the other.” (12:13)

4. CAUSE: “Christ shows that works of mercy are lawful and proper to be done on the Lord’s day. There are more ways of doing well upon Sabbath days, than by the duties of worship: attending the sick, relieving the poor, helping those who need speedy relief, teaching the young to care for their souls; these are doing good: and these must be done from love and charity, with humility and self-denial, and shall be accepted, Genesis 4:7. This, like other cures which Christ wrought, had a spiritual meaning.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “But the Pharisees went out and conspired against him, how to destroy him.” (12:14)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Christ only, by the power of his grace, cures us; he heals the withered hand by putting life into the dead soul, works in us both to will and to do: for, with the command, there is a promise of grace given by the word.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

III. KEY TEXT (God’s Chosen Servant): “Jesus, aware of this, withdrew from there. And many followed him, and he healed them all and ordered them not to make him known.” (12:16)

A. INFERENCE: “This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah: ‘Behold, my servant whom I have chosen, my beloved with whom my soul is well pleased. I will put my Spirit upon him, and he will proclaim justice to the Gentiles. He will not quarrel or cry aloud, nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets; a bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice to victory; and in his name the Gentiles will hope.” (12:17-21)

1. FINDINGS: “. . . he healed them all . . .” (12:16)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . and ordered them not to make him known.” (12:16)

3. CONDITION: “Let us lay aside contentious and angry debates; let us receive one another as Christ receives us. And while encouraged by the gracious kindness of our Lord, we should pray that his Spirit may rest upon us, and make us able to copy his example.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “And demons also came out of many, crying, “You are the Son of God!” But he rebuked them and would not allow them to speak, because they knew that he was the Christ.” (Luke 4:41)

5. EFFECT: “For he whom God has sent utters the words of God, for he gives the Spirit without measure.” (John 3:34)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let us with cheerful confidence commit our souls to so kind and faithful a Friend.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

IV. KEY TEXT (Blasphemy Against the Holy Spirit): “Then a demon-oppressed man who was blind and mute was brought to him, and he healed him, so that the man spoke and saw.” (12:22)

A. INFERENCE: “And all the people were amazed, and said, ‘Can this be the Son of David?'” (12:23)

1. FINDINGS: “But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, ‘It is only by Beelzebul, the prince of demons, that this man casts out demons.'” (12:24)

2. CRITERIA: “Knowing their thoughts, he said to them, ‘Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and no city or house divided against itself will stand. And if Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then will his kingdom stand? And if I cast out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges. But if it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.” (12:25-28)

3. CONDITION: “There are two great interests in the world; and when unclean spirits are cast out by the Holy Spirit, in the conversion of sinners to a life of faith and obedience, the kingdom of God is come unto us. All who do not aid or rejoice in such a change are against Christ.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Or how can someone enter a strong man’s house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man? Then indeed he may plunder his house.” (12:29)

5. EFFECT: “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters. Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven people, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.” (12:29-32)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Do not blaspheme the Holy Spirit; it’s the unforgivable sin. (Mark 3:29)

V. KEY TEXT (A Tree Is Known by its Fruit): “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad, for the tree is known by its fruit. ” (12:33)

A. INFERENCE: “You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. How can you speek good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out his evil treasure brings forth evil.” (12:34-35)

1. FINDINGS: “I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” (12:36-37)

2. CRITERIA: “Men’s language discovers what country they are of, likewise what manner of spirit they are of. The heart is the fountain, words are the streams. A troubled fountain, and a corrupt spring, must send forth muddy and unpleasant streams. Nothing but the salt of grace, cast into the spring, will heal the waters, season the speech, and purify the corrupt communication.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “An evil man has an evil treasure in his heart, and out of it brings forth evil things. Lusts and corruptions, dwelling and reigning in the heart, are an evil treasure, out of which the sinner brings forth bad words and actions, to dishonor God, and hurt others.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit, for each tree is known by its own fruit.” (Luke 6:43)

5. EFFECT: “For figs are not gathered from thorn bushes, nor are grapes picked from a bramble bush.” (Luke 6:44)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Let us keep constant watch over ourselves, that we may speak words agreeable to the Christian character.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

VI. KEY TEXT (The Sign of Jonah): “Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered him, saying, ‘Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you.’ But he answered them, ‘An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” (12:38-39)

A. INFERENCE: “The men of Nineveh will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, something greater than Jonah is here.” (12:40-41)

1. FINDINGS: “The queen of the South will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, something greater than Solomon is here.” (12:42)

2. CRITERIA: “And the people of Nineveh believed God. They called for a fast and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them to the least of them.” (Jonah 3:5)

3. CONDITION: “The word reached the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, removed his robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. And he issued a proclamation and published through Nineveh, “By the decree of the king and his nobles: Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything. Let them not feed or drink water, but let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and let them call out mightily to God. Let everyone turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands. Who knows? God may turn and relent and turn from his fierce anger, so that we may not perish.” (Jonah 3:6-9)

4. CAUSE: “. . . evil, violence.” (Jonah 3:6-9)

5. EFFECT: “When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil way, God relented of the disaster that he had said he would do to them, and he did not do it.” (Jonah 3:10)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Turn don’t burn.” (Psalm 34:14)

VII. KEY TEXT (Return of an Unclean Spirit): “When the unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it passes through waterless places seeking rest, but finds none.” (12:43)

A. INFERENCE: “Then it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when it comes, it finds the house empty, swept, and put in order.” (12:44)

1. FINDINGS: “Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter and dwell there, and the last state of that person is worse than the first.” (12:45)

2. CRITERIA: “So also will it be with this evil generation.” (12:45)

3. CONDITION: “When the unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it passes through waterless places seeking rest, and finding none it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when it comes, it finds the house swept and put in order. Then it goes and brings seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter and dwell there. And the last state of that person is worse than the first.” (Luke 11:24-26)

4. CAUSE: “Here is the condition of a hypocrite. The house is swept from common sins, by a forced confession, as Pharaoh’s; by a feigned contrition, as Ahab’s; or by a partial reformation, as Herod’s.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “The house is swept, but it is not washed; the heart is not made holy. Sweeping takes off only the loose dirt, while the sin that besets the sinner, the beloved sin, is untouched.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Take a good scrubbing.

VIII. KEY TEXT (Jesus’ Mother and Brothers): “While he was still speaking to the people, behold, his mother and his brothers stood outside, asking to speak to him.” (13:46)

A. INFERENCE: “But he replied to the man who told him, ‘Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?'” (13:48)

1. FINDINGS: “And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, ‘Here are my mother and my brothers!” (13:49)

2. CRITERIA: “‘For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.'” (13:50)

3. CONDITION: “It is a great comfort to all true Christians, that they are dearer to Christ than mother, brother, or sister as such, merely as relations in the flesh would have been, even had they been holy.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Blessed be God, this great and gracious privilege is ours even now; for though Christ’s bodily presence cannot be enjoyed by us, his spiritual presence is not denied us.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: This text has an eternal context.

6. RECOMMENDATION: Claim the family of Christ.

Matthew 13:1, I. The Parable of the Sower; II. The Purpose of the Parables; III. The Parable of the Sower Explained; IV. The Parable of the Weeds; V. The Mustard Seed and the Leaven; VI. Prophecy and Parables; VII. The Parable of the Weeds Explained; VIII. The Parable of the Hidden Treasure; IX. The Parable of the Pearl of Great Value; X. The Parable of the Net; XI. New and Old Treasures; XII. Jesus Rejected at Nazareth

I. KEY TEXT (The Parable of the Sower): “That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. And great crowds gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat down. And the whole crowd stood on the beach.” (13:1-2)

A. INFERENCE: “And he told them many things in parables, saying: A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. He who has ears, let him hear.” (13:3-9)

1. FINDINGS: “Christ taught in parables. Thereby the things of God were made more plain and easy to those willing to be taught, and at the same time more difficult and obscure to those who were willingly ignorant.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

2. CRITERIA: “The parable of the sower is plain. The seed sown is the word of God. The sower is our Lord Jesus Christ, by himself, or by his ministers.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Jesus entered into a boat that he might be the less pressed, and be the better heard by the people. By this he teaches us in the outward circumstances of worship not to covet that which is stately, but to make the best of the conveniences God in his providence allots to us.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: To teach.

5. EFFECT: Parables enabled Jesus to teach plainly and easily to those willing to be taught.

6. RECOMMENDATION: “He who has ears, let him hear.” (13:9)

II. KEY TEXT (The Purpose of the Parables): “Then the disciples came and said to him, ‘Why do you speak to them in parables?'” (13:10)

A. INFERENCE: “And he answered them, ‘To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.” (13:11)

1. FINDINGS: “For to the one who has, more will be given, and he will have an abundance, but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.” (13:12)

2. CRITERIA: “This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. Indeed, in their case the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled that says: You will indeed hear but never understand, and you will indeed see but never perceive. For this people’s heart has grown dull, and with their ears they can barely hear, and their eyes they have closed, lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand with their heart and turn, and I would heal them.” (13:13-15)

3. CONDITION: “But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. For truly, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.” (13:16-17)

4. CAUSE: “So it is with the hearts of men, whose different characters are here described by four sorts of ground. Careless, trifling hearers, are an easy prey to Satan; who, as he is the great murderer of souls, so he is the great thief of sermons, and will be sure to rob us of the word, if we take not care to keep it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Many are glad to hear a good sermon, who do not profit by it. They are told of free salvation, of the believer’s privileges, and the happiness of heaven; and, without any change of heart, without any abiding conviction of their own depravity, their need of a Savior, or to show the excellence of holiness, they soon profess an unwarranted assurance. But when some heavy trial threatens them, or some sinful advantage may be had, they give up or disguise their profession, or turn to some easier system. Worldly cares are fitly compared to thorns, for they came in with sin, and are a fruit of the curse; they are good in their place to stop a gap, but a man must be well armed that has much to do with them; they are entangling, vexing, scratching, and their end is to be burned, Hebrews 6:8. Worldly cares are great hindrances to our profiting by the word of God. The deceitfulness of riches does the mischief; they cannot be said to deceive us unless we put our trust in them, then they choke the good seed. What distinguished the good ground was fruitfulness. By this true Christians are distinguished from hypocrites. Christ does not say that this good ground has no stones in it, or no thorns; but none that could hinder its fruitfulness. All are not alike; we should aim at the highest, to bring forth most fruit. The sense of hearing cannot be better employed than in hearing God’s word; and let us look to ourselves that we may know what sort of hearers we are.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Aim high.

III. KEY TEXT (The Parable of the Sower Explained): “Hear then the parable of the sower: When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path. As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away. As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.” (13:18-23)

A. INFERENCE: “The sense of hearing cannot be better employed than in hearing God’s word; and let us look to ourselves that we may know what sort of hearers we are.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

1. FINDINGS: “When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

2. CRITERIA: The Path, rocky soil, thorns, and good soil; be careful where you sow.

3. CONDITION: “Hear and understand.” (13:22)

4. CAUSE: God wants us back. See diagram at: http://jwaministries.net/Gods_Strategic_Plan.gif

5. EFFECT: God wants us (free grace) as much as we want God (free will).

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Bear fruit and yield.” (13:23)

IV. KEY TEXT (The Parable of the Weeds): “He put another parable before them, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field, but while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat and went away. So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared also.” (13:24-26)

A. INFERENCE: “And the servants of the master of the house came and said to him, ‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have weeds?'” (13:27)

1. FINDINGS: “He said to them, ‘An enemy has done this.’ So the servants said to him, ‘Then do you want us to go and gather them?'” (13:28)

2. CRITERIA: “But he said, ‘No, lest in gathering the weeds you root up the wheat along with them.'” (13:29)

3. CONDITION: “Let both grow together until the harvest, and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.'” (13:30)

4. CAUSE: “The enemy planted weeds.” (13:25)

5. EFFECT: “Weeds mixed with the wheat.” (13:26)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Wait until the time of harvest.” (13:30)

V. KEY TEXT (The Mustard Seed and the Leaven):“He put another parable before them, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field.” (13:31)

A. INFERENCE: “It is the smallest seed of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.” (13:32)

1. FINDINGS: “He told them another parable. The kingdom of heaven is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened.” (13:33)

2. CRITERIA: “Thus it was in the world. The apostles, by preaching the gospel, hid a handful of leaven in the great mass of mankind. It was made powerful by the Spirit of the Lord of hosts, who works, and none can hinder. Thus it is in the heart.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “The scope of the parable of the seed sown, is to show that the beginnings of the gospel would be small, but its latter end would greatly increase; in this way the work of grace in the heart, the kingdom of God within us, would be carried on.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “In the soul where grace truly is, it will grow really; though perhaps at first not to be discerned, it will at last come to great strength and usefulness. The preaching of the gospel works like leaven in the hearts of those who receive it. The leaven works certainly, so does the word, yet gradually. It works silently, and without being seen, Mark 4:26-29, yet strongly; without noise, for so is the way of the Spirit, but without fail.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Thus it was in the world. The apostles, by preaching the gospel, hid a handful of leaven in the great mass of mankind. It was made powerful by the Spirit of the Lord of hosts, who works, and none can hinder. Thus it is in the heart. When the gospel comes into the soul, it works a thorough change; it spreads itself into all the powers and faculties of the soul, and alters the property even of the members of the body, Romans 6:13.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “From these parables we are taught to expect a gradual progress; therefore let us inquire, Are we growing in grace? and in holy principles and habits?” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

VI. KEY TEXT (Prophesy and Parables): “”All these things Jesus said to the crowds in parables; indeed, he said nothing to them without a parable.” (13:34-35)

A. INFERENCE: “I will open my mouth in parables; I will utter what has been hidden since the foundation of the world.” (13:35)

1. FINDINGS: “. . . he said nothing to them without a parable.” (13:35)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . utter what has been hidden since the foundation of the world.” (13:35)

3. CONDITION: “The scope of the parable of the seed sown, is to show that the beginnings of the gospel would be small, but its latter end would greatly increase; in this way the work of grace in the heart, the kingdom of God within us, would be carried on.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “In the soul where grace truly is, it will grow really; though perhaps at first not to be discerned, it will at last come to great strength and usefulness. The preaching of the gospel works like leaven in the hearts of those who receive it. The leaven works certainly, so does the word, yet gradually. It works silently, and without being seen, Mark 4:26-29, yet strongly; without noise, for so is the way of the Spirit, but without fail.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “Thus it was in the world. The apostles, by preaching the gospel, hid a handful of leaven in the great mass of mankind. It was made powerful by the Spirit of the Lord of hosts, who works, and none can hinder. Thus it is in the heart. When the gospel comes into the soul, it works a thorough change; it spreads itself into all the powers and faculties of the soul, and alters the property even of the members of the body, Romans 6:13.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “From these parables we are taught to expect a gradual progress; therefore let us inquire, Are we growing in grace? and in holy principles and habits?” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

VII. KEY TEXT (The Parable of the Weeds Explained): “Then he left the crowds and went into the house. And his disciples came to him, saying, ‘Explain to us the parable of the weeds of the field.’ He answered, ‘The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man. The field is the world, and the good seed is the sons of the kingdom. The weeds are the sons of the evil one, and the enemy who sowed them is the devil. The harvest is the close of the age, and the reapers are angels.” (13:36-39)

A. INFERENCE: “Just as the weeds are gathered and burned with fire, so will it be at the close of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all law breakers, and throw them into the fiery furnace” (13:40-42)

1. FINDINGS: “In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (13:42)

2. CRITERIA: “Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father.” (13:43)

3. CONDITION: “He who has ears, let him hear.” (13:43)

4. CAUSE: God wants us back. See diagram at: http://jwaministries.net/Gods_Strategic_Plan.gif

5. EFFECT: “The Son of Man will send his angels . . .” (13:41)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Be ready for the end of the age.” (2 Peter 3)

VIII. KEY TEXT (The Parable of the Hidden Treasure): “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.” (13:44)

A. INFERENCE: “Many slight the gospel, because they look only upon the surface of the field. But all who search the Scriptures, so as in them to find Christ and eternal life, John 5:39, will discover such treasure in this field as makes it unspeakably valuable; they make it their own upon any terms. Though nothing can be given as a price for this salvation, yet much must be given up for the sake of it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

1. FINDINGS: “. . . much must be given up for the sake of it.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

2. CRITERIA: “Don’t forget where you covered up the treasure.” (13:44)

3. CONDITION: A parable of “Temporal” versus “Eternal.”

4. CAUSE: Need for salvation.

5. EFFECT: Blessed Assurance.

6. RECOMMENDATION: Search Scripture for your hidden treasure.

IX. KEY TEXT (The Parable of the Pearl of Great Value): “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it.” (13:45)

A. INFERENCE: “All the children of men are busy; one would be rich, another would be honorable, another would be learned; but most are deceived, and take up with counterfeits for pearls. Jesus Christ is a Pearl of great price; in having him, we have enough to make us happy here and for ever. A man may buy gold too dear, but not this Pearl of great price. When the convinced sinner sees Christ as the gracious Savior, all things else become worthless to his thoughts.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

1. FINDINGS: “Jesus Christ is a Pearl of great price.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

2. CRITERIA: Find one pearl of great price. (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “. . . in having him, we have enough to make us happy here and for ever.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: Don’t let the finest pearl get away.

5. EFFECT: “. . . all things else become worthless to his thoughts.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Seek out the finest pearl.

X. KEY TEXT (The Parable of the Net): “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was thrown into the sea and gathered fish of every kind. When it was full, men drew it ashore and sat down and sorted the good into containers but threw away the bad.” (13:47-48)

A. INFERENCE: “So it will be at the close of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous and throw them into the fiery furnace.” (13:49)

1. FINDINGS: “In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (13:50)

2. CRITERIA: “The world is a vast sea, and men, in their natural state, are like the fishes. Preaching the gospel is casting a net into this sea, to catch something out of it, for His glory who has the sovereignty of this sea.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Hypocrites and true Christians shall be parted: miserable is the condition of those that shall then be cast away.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: A parting is needed; nothing unclean will be allowed to enter heaven and God’s pure kingdom.

5. EFFECT: Seek to be a keeper.

6. RECOMMENDATION: Don’t be cast away.

XI. KEY TEXT (New and Old Treasures): “‘Have you understood all these things?’ They said to him, ‘Yes.’ And he said to them, ‘Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house, who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old.'” (13:51-52)

A. INFERENCE: “A skillful, faithful minister of the gospel, is a scribe, well versed in the things of the gospel, and able to teach them. Christ compares him to a good householder, who brings forth fruits of last year’s growth and this year’s gathering, abundance and variety, to entertain his friends. Old experiences and new observations, all have their use. Our place is at Christ’s feet, and we must daily learn old lessons over again, and new ones also.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

1. FINDINGS: “Christ compares a scribe to a good householder, who brings forth fruits . . .” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

2. CRITERIA: “. . . brings forth fruits of abundance and variety.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Our place is at Christ’s feet . . .” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “. . . its time to serve up the treasure.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “. . . the banquet is ready to be served.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Come and get it.

XII. KEY TEXT (Jesus Rejected at Nazareth): “And when Jesus had finished these parables, he went away from there, and coming to his hometown he taught them in their synagogue, so that they were astonished, and said, ‘Where did this man get this wisdom and these mighty works?'” (13:53-54)

A. INFERENCE: “Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things? And they took offense at him.” (13:55-57)

1. FINDINGS: “But Jesus said to them, ‘A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and in his own household. And he did not do many mighty works there, because of their unbelief.” (13:58)

2. CRITERIA: “Yes, it is true he was reputed to be so; and no disgrace to be the son of an honest tradesman; they should have respected him the more because he was one of themselves, but therefore they despised him. He did not many mighty works there, because of their unbelief. Unbelief is the great hindrance to Christ’s favors. Let us keep faithful to him as the Savior who has made our peace with God.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “. . . they despised him.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “. . . unbelief.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “And he did not do many mighty works there, because of their unbelief” (13:58)

6. RECOMMENDATION: Be careful who you throw out.

Matthew 14:1, I. The Death of John the Baptist; II. Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand; III. Jesus Walks on Water; IV. Jesus Heals the Sick in Gennesaret

I. KEY TEXT (The Death of John the Baptist): “At that time Herod the tetrarch heard about the fame of Jesus, and he said to his servants, ‘This is John the Baptist. He has been raised from the dead; that is why these miraculous powers are at work in him.'” (14:1-2)

A. INFERENCE: “For Herod had seized John and bound him and put him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, because John had been saying to him, ‘It is not lawful for you to have her.’ And though he wanted to put him to death, he feared the people, because they held him to be a prophet.” (14:3-5)

1. FINDINGS: “But when Herod’s birthday came, the daughter of Herodias danced before the company and pleased Herod, so that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she might ask. Prompted by her mother, she said, ‘Give me the head of John the Baptist here on a platter.’ And the king was sorry, but because of his oaths and his guests he commanded it to be given. He sent and had John beheaded in the prison, and his head was brought on a platter and given to the girl, and she brought it to her mother. And his disciples came and took the body and buried it, and they went and told Jesus.” (14:6-12)

2. CRITERIA: “When men pretend to favor the gospel, yet live in evil, we must not favor their self-delusion, but must deliver our consciences as John did.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Herod feared that the putting of John to death might raise a rebellion among the people, which it did not; but he never feared it might stir up his own conscience against him, which it did.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Herod would profusely reward a worthless dance, while imprisonment and death were the recompense of the man of God who sought the salvation of his soul.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “The death of John the Baptist.” (14:10)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “. . . but must deliver our consciences as John did.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

II. KEY TEXT (Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand): “Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a desolate place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them and healed their sick.” (14:14)

A. INFERENCE: “Now when it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, ‘This is a desolate place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” (14:15)

1. FINDINGS: “But Jesus said, ‘They need not go away; you give them something to eat.'” (14:16)

2. CRITERIA: “They said to him, ‘We have only five loaves here and two fish. And he said, ‘Bring them here to me.’ Then he ordered the crowds to sit sown on the grass, and taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing. Then he broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds.” (14:17-19)

3. CONDITION: “And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over. And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.” (14:20-21)

4. CAUSE: “This little supply of bread was increased by Christ’s creating power, till the whole multitude were satisfied. In seeking the welfare of men’s souls, we should have compassion on their bodies likewise.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “And they all ate and were satisfied.” (14:20)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “In seeking the welfare of men’s souls, we should have compassion on their bodies likewise.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

III. KEY TEXT (Jesus Walks on Water): “Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but the boat by this time was a long way from the land, beaten by the waves, for the wind was against them. And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. [The fourth watch was the last part of the night between three and six in the morning. This was the last watch, the end of the night.]” (14:22-25)

A. INFERENCE: “It is no new thing for Christ’s disciples to meet with storms in the way of duty, but he thereby shows himself with the more grace to them and for them. He can take what way he pleases to save his people. But even appearances of deliverance sometimes occasion trouble and perplexity to God’s people.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

1. FINDINGS: “But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, ‘It is a ghost!’ and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.'” (14:26)

2. CRITERIA: “And Peter answered him, ‘Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.’ He said, ‘Come.’ So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, ‘Lord, save me.’ Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, ‘O you of little faith, why did you doubt? And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, ‘Truly you are the Son of God.'” (14:28-33)

3. CONDITION: “Peter walked upon the water, not for diversion or to boast of it, but to go to Jesus; and in that he was thus wonderfully born up. Special supports are promised, and are to be expected, but only in spiritual pursuits; nor can we ever come to Jesus, unless we are upheld by his power.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “Christ bade Peter come, not only that he might walk upon the water, and so know his Lord’s power, but that he might know his own weakness. And the Lord often lets his servants have their choice, to humble and prove them, and to show the greatness of his power and grace.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “When we look off from Christ, and look at the greatness of opposing difficulties, we shall begin to fall; but when we call to him, he will stretch out his arm, and save us.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Christ is the great Savior; those who would be saved, must come to him, and cry to him, for salvation; we are never brought to this, till we find ourselves sinking: the sense of need drives us to him.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

IV. KEY TEXT (Jesus Heals the Sick in Gennesaret): “And when they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret. And when the men of that place recognized him, they sent around to all that region and brought to him all who were sick and implored him that they might only touch the fringe of his garment. And as many as touched it were made well.” (14:34-36)

A. INFERENCE: “They brought unto him all that were diseased. They came humbly beseeching him to help them. The experiences of others may direct and encourage us in seeking for Christ. As many as he touched, were made perfectly whole.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

1. FINDINGS: “The healing virtue was not in the finger, but in their faith; or rather, it was in Christ, whom their faith took hold upon.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

2. CRITERIA: “As many as he touched, were made perfectly whole. Those whom Christ heals, he heals perfectly.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

3. CONDITION: “Were men more acquainted with Christ, and with the diseased state of their souls, they would flock to receive his healing influences.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

4. CAUSE: “They brought unto him all that were diseased. They came humbly beseeching him to help them.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

5. EFFECT: “The experiences of others may direct and encourage us in seeking for Christ.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)

6. RECOMMENDATION: “Seek healing from Christ.” (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary)