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Lesson No. 41—Take Your Bible to Bible Class for Reading the Scripture.

LESSON THEME:—MATTHEW

Matthew 2:1-6.

  • KEY WORD—”FULFILLED.”

  • KEY VERSEMatthew 2:2.

  • KEY PHRASE—”CHRIST FULFILS THE MESSIANIC PROPHECIES.”

Home Readings.

Read the whole of Matthew, noting these oft repeated phrases, “That the saying might be fulfilled,” “I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.” For family altar read:—

WRITER—Matthew followed the much despised and hated profession of tax-collector, in Capernaum. When he heard the wonderful words and saw the wonderful works of Christ he rose up and followed Him. To celebrate the beginning of his discipleship he gave a feast to his friends that they, too, might sit at the feet of the Master and learn of Him. Christ changed his name from Levi, which meant “he who cleaves to the old ways,” to Matthew, meaning “the gift of Jehovah.” He was one of the twelve apostles, probably devoted his ministry to the Jews in Palestine, and wrote the gospel that bears his name about 60 A. D.

PURPOSE—To show that Jesus of Nazareth was the Messiah promised in the Old Testament, and the King of the Jews.

GREAT FACTS:—

  1. Proof.

  2. Entrance.

  3. Teachings.

  4. Suffering.

  5. Triumph.

Great Fact I. Proof that Jesus was the Messiah.

Matthew 1; Matthew 2.

  1. The Jews looked for the Messiah to be of the seed of Abraham, and also to be of the royal line of David, therefore Matthew is very particular to bring out these two facts in giving Christ’s line of descent, showing that Jesus was the Messiah by His human ancestry, Matthew 1:1-17.

  2. Matthew next proves Jesus was the Messiah by His divine origin for He was begotten not by a human father but by the Holy Spirit, Matthew 1:20.

  3. Matthew also proves that Jesus is the Messiah, because His early history fulfils to the letter the things spoken of Him by the prophets. He was born at Bethlehem, of the house of David, came out of Egypt, lived at Nazareth, etc.

Great Fact II. Entrance of the Messiah Upon His Work.

Matthew 3; Matthew 4.

While Jesus is still living at Nazareth, John the Baptist, after a solitary life in the desert, suddenly appears to the Jews, and breaks the prophetic silence of 400 years. His startling message bid the people to lay aside indifference, hypocrisy and false doctrines and receive Christ as the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world. Tidings of the revival travelled northward to the province of Galilee, and among the numbers who came to hear the heart-stirring preaching were five young men, who afterward became Christ’s disciples, John, Andrew, Simon, Phillip and Nathanael. Before long another made the long journey from Nazareth to Bethany beyond Jordan to be baptized of John. When He offered Himself. John was amazed that the Messiah should seek baptism at his hands, but Jesus said, “It is fitting for us thus to satisfy every claim of religion.” (20th Century New Testament translation). Christ was circumcised in order that He might fulfil the Law, and baptized in order to be an example to those under Grace, 1 Peter 2:21.

Before Christ could enter upon His public ministry, the Holy Spirit led Him into the wilderness for the Temptation experience, which was to strengthen His trust in God, and bring out the principle that He would take orders only and always from God. The first two temptations were a challenge to prove Himself the Son of God. The last was the presumptuous offer of the usurping prince of this world to give to Christ the Kingdoms of this world, if He would fall down and worship Satan. Each test is met with scripture quoted from Deuteronomy, the book of obedience. Matthew 8:3; 6:13-14. Satan, who so easily triumphed over Adam, retires from our Lord in utter defeat. If we compare Christ’s experience with Eve’s temptation in Genesis 3:1-5, we shall see that the same old tempter is ever trying to cast doubt upon God’s goodness to men, and seeking to twist scriptures in order to deceive.

Christ now begins His public ministry in the northern province of Galilee, and calls Andrew, Peter, James and John to be His disciples. Those who are called by Christ must separate themselves to Him, learn of Him as Teacher, and follow Him as Master.

Great Fact III. Teachings and Miracles of the Messiah.

Matthew 5; Matthew 6; Matthew 7; Matthew 8; Matthew 9; Matthew 10;
Matthew 11; Matthew 12; Matthew 13; Matthew 14; Matthew 15; Matthew 16;
Matthew 17; Matthew 18; Matthew 19; Matthew 20; Matthew 21; Matthew 22;
Matthew 23; Matthew 24; Matthew 25.

In the parables and sermons of Christ He set forth spiritual truths in an impressive form. The most famous of them all is the Sermon on the Mount delivered during the first year of His public ministry. In it Jesus lays down the principal laws of the kingdom. It begins not with commands but with blessings, and reveals the riches of poverty, the royalty of meekness, and the blessedness that shall come out of sorrow and persecution. He taught that He came not to abolish the Law, but to obey and fulfil it. In memorable words He urged:—

  1. The character is the secret of happiness. That men of purity, self-control, humility and loyalty shall inherit the earth.

  2. That everything we do is judged by whether it is done with right motives.

  3. That kindliness is binding upon all, even to doing good to our enemies.

  4. That because God is our Father we should be free from anxiety, sincere in prayer, charitable to the poor, and ever seeking to be perfect as our Father in Heaven is perfect.

He warned those who heard His sayings and did them not, that they were like a foolish man who built his house upon a foundation of sand, and in the path of storms, bringing upon himself certain destruction.

The miracles of our Lord proved beyond doubt that He had supreme command over nature, for He made the winds and the waves obey Him, multiplied a few loaves and fishes, made incurably sick bodies whole, and even gave life to the dead. His miracles were acts of love and parables of mercy, proving that He was Indeed the Saviour of the world. He opened blind eyes to show His power over spiritual blindness He fed hungry bodies to show that He alone can satisfy hungry hearts, He raised the dead to show that He can give spiritual life to those who are dead in trespasses and sins.

The teachings and works of Christ should take hold of our very hearts, for they lead us to do everything that is good with the highest motives, and lead us of our own accord to hate sin.

Great Fact IV. Sufferings of the Messiah.

Matthew 26; Matthew 27.

Although Jesus was believed in and followed by a large number of disciples, yet the opposition of the Jews was bitter and they determined to put Him to death. He therefore instituted the Lord’s Supper as a memorial ordinance of His death, was betrayed by Judas in the Garden of Gethsemane, and tried before Annas, the ex-high priest, before Caiaphas, the high priest, before Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea, before Herod, governor of Galilee, and again before Pilate.

On the grounds of blasphemy, and of claiming to be the King of the Jews, thus making Himself the enemy of the Roman empire, Jesus was delivered up by Pilate to be crucified on April 7th in the year 30 A. D.

At 9 a. m. on Calvary’s brow, in fulfilment of Psalm 22:18, the soldiers parted His garments among them for His under-cloak they cast lots, and there between two thieves He was nailed upon a cross of wood. At noon a miraculous darkness descended upon the land, followed by a great earthquake that rent the rocks and the mountains, and split in two the veil which separated the Holy of Holies from the Holy Place in the temple. This signified that it was now possible through the shed blood of Christ, for every believer to enter God’s presence in prayer. At 3 p. m., after hanging on the cross for six hours, the Saviour died, not from physical suffering alone, but or a broken heart, crushed by the sins of the world. When in triumph He cried, “It is finished!” the debt of the world was paid, the types and symbolism of the Old Covenant were all fulfilled, every iota of the law was magnified, so that all who believe in Him shall have everlasting life!

Great Fact V. The Resurrection Triumph of the Messiah.

Matthew 28.

The body of Jesus was in the tomb Bart of Friday, all of Saturday, and part of Sunday, but as a part of a day was counted a day by the Jews, Jesus had said, “After three days I will rise again!

Early Sunday morning the women found the tomb empty except for the angel who announced that Christ had risen from the dead, and we can well imagine the boundless joy of their hearts as they realized that the great stone no longer sealed their Master’s doom and their own failure.

There is no fact better proved in history than the resurrection of Christ, for twelve times he appeared to His disciples. Three times we are told that His disciples touched Him after He rose, Matthew 28:9; Luke 24:39; John 20:27; and twice we are told that He ate with them, Luke 24:42; John 21:12-13.

Among the supreme benefits of Christ’s resurrection are the following:

  1. It is a proof that Christ actually atoned for our sins. Romans 1:4.

  2. Believers share the resurrection life of Christ. Romans 6:4.

  3. It is the guarantee and pattern of believers’ resurrection. As Christ arose and put on a spiritual body so shall we. As the caterpillar is changed into a beautiful butterfly, and the charcoal into a brilliant diamond, so we shall be changed into His glorious image.

Questions on the Lesson.

  1. Name the key word and key verse.

  2. Tell what you know about Matthew.

  3. When was the book written?

  4. What the purpose?

  5. Name the great facts.

  6. Why did Matthew bring out Christ’s line of descent?

  7. How did he prove Christ’s divine origin?

  8. Show that Christ fulfilled the prophecies.

  9. Tell of the entrance of the Messiah upon His work,

  10. Why was Christ circumcised and baptised?

  11. Tell of His temptation and what It teaches.

  12. Give the four points concerning it.

  13. What do the miracles prove and teach?

  14. Give the steps in the sufferings of the Messiah.

  15. Tell of the events on the day Christ was crucified.

  16. What did Christ mean when He said “It is finished?

  17. Tell of the events on the Resurrection morning.

  18. How many times did Christ appear to the disciples?

  19. What are some of the supreme bane. fits of the resurrection?

  20. How much of Matthew have you read?

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