The Gospel of Matthew Survey. Fulfilled.

The Gospel of Matthew Survey. Fulfilled.

The Gospel of Matthew Survey

FULFILLED

Pr Edi Giudetti

14-01-2018

 

 

13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? 14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. 15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? 16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” (Matt 16:13-16)

 

The word Fulfilled, is the singular and most apt word to describe the Gospel according to Matthew. Within that word he addresses more plainly than all the other written accounts that Jesus Christ is the person who has perfectly fulfilled all that the prophets have spoken about.

 

Matthew accounts for more than half of all the pronouncements of the fulfilment of prophecy in Christ, that is given in the four Gospel accounts. Each one he particularly emphasises that Jesus is he who is the specific and particular fulfilment of that given prophecy.

 

Mathew is one of four Gospel accounts of the Lord Jesus Christ. NB: Only he and the apostle John are actually apostles of the Lord, Mark and Luke are but disciples of the apostles and not apostles themselves.

 

The four Gospels are narratives, they tell the story and the account of God manifest in the flesh, Emanuel, of what he did and what he said while walking the shores of Galilee and climbing the hills of Judea.

 

Matthews account of Christ has a distinction of focus from the other three accounts, just as each of them have a peculiar focus distinct from each other.

 

But even adding all four accounts together  we certainly do not have an exhaustive account of all that Jesus said and did; the apostle John makes that clear in the last verse of his account stating

 

And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen

 

Matthew writes as a man who both saw and listened to what Jesus said and did, early expecting that he was the Christ.  So much so that he quickly left his very lucrative business in the collection of taxes, to follow after Christ the moment he was called.  The Lord opening his eyes particularly to that which the Old Testament teaches concerning Christ and from the first chapter, drawing the direct links to that end in Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

 

16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

 

 

THE ENQUIRY MADE

 

13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? (Mt 16:13)

 

A little over half of Matthews account of Christ is now given us and our Lord makes enquiry to his disciples, men who have ventured to cast their lots in with Christ and have taken it upon themselves to forsake all and follow him, these are now asked of the Lord; Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? The question seems loaded, as within that question is also found a statement, that I the Son of man am?

 

Our Lord was never silent respecting his identity, his desire was that all men might know the Saviour has come as was spoken of him long ago, he rightly presumes that they might know him and he makes enquiry of his disciples of that which they themselves must be aware of.

 

Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?

 

By this time we have already seen some history past respecting all that Jesus said and did. In Chapter 1:22 Matthew draws our first attention to the fulfillment of a most ancient prophecy concerning Christ saying;

 

Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, 23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. (Matt 1:22-23)

 

700 years earlier was this prophecy given and it was given in the presence of a godless King of Judah, in the Royal line of David. Isaiah 7:14 but let us turn to the context;

 

Isaiah 7:13-14

 

And he said, Hear ye now, O house of David; Is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will ye weary my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

 

And to ensure we do not miss the direct link Matthew draws our attention to the linage of the King of Kings by giving to us his generation from the first verse;

 

The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

(Mt 1:1)

 

So Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? Jesus makes this enquiry and again we note of all that has come to pass in its consideration.

 

In Chapter 2 Matthew is the only one who gives to us the account of the magi, the wise men who came from the East to worship him, none of the other Gospel accounts mention this event.

 

Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, 2 Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. (Mt 2:1-2)

 

There are men from the east who know who he is and there are not yet any other indicators of his miracles to prove him, yet it seems already there has come some who knows who the “Son of man” is. But not only is this event unique to Matthew, so too is the account of the flight of Jesus, Mary and Joseph into Egypt to Escape Herod.  It is unique to Matthew for the specific purpose again of demonstrating the fulfillment of all that was spoken of him, for he says;

 

13 And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him. 14 When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt: 15 And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son. (Mt 2:13-15) Refer (Hosea 11:1)

 

The slaughter of the innocents also given only in the account in Matthew. For this same Herod, before his death, and when he was mocked of the wise men, ordered the murder of all male children under the age of two in the small town of Bethlehem, and for what purpose does Matthew give his account?

 

Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, 18 In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not. (Mt 2:17-18)

 

The return to Nazareth, also unique to Matthew and also given that men may know who Jesus, “the Son of man” is; that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene. (Mt 2:23) Referring to accounts given by more than one prophet; we can draw from passages in Numbers, Judges, 1st Samuel, the Psalms, Isaiah and Amos.

 

 

 

The coming of John the Baptist, Matthew relates as

 

For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. Matthew even relates to the direction of travel for the ministry of Christ as prophesied before;

 

13 And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim: 14 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, 15 The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; 16 The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up. (Matt 4:13-16)

 

 

 

In chapter 8 Matthew drew attention to the healing power of Christ taking our infirmities and bare our sicknesses as the fulfillment of Isaiah 53:4, Isaiah 63:9, Psalm 2:24.

 

That Christ would show judgement to the gentiles and will not strive with men but be gentle so as to break no bruised reed nor quench any smoking flax (Candle) and most importantly that it will be the GENTILES WHO WILL COME TO TRUST IN HIS NAME.

 

See Matthew 12:17-21 referring to Isaiah 42:1-4

 

Even the speaking of parables Matthew reminds, that even this act by the coming Christ would identify him, saying in Chapter 13:35;

 

That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, I will open my mouth in parables; I will utter things which have been kept secret from the foundation of the world.

 

Referring to the record given in Psalm 78:2

 

 

It is then within reason that men might KNOW WHO CHRIST “THE SON OF MAN” IS. But the disciples answer, 14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.

 

So much that was written of the Lord before he came, and so many where the specific fulfillments of his coming, and so close were they to this event with Christ walking among them, and yet they could not identify him.

 

Can you identify him?

 

Can you now see, with 20/20 hindsight, that this is the Christ, the Son of the living God?

He is he who came to save the world from its sin, to save you from your sin.

 

To bring liberty to the captives of sin, and eyes to the spiritually blind.

Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God is the one spoken of in ancient times, to bring life to the dead…spiritual life to the spiritually dead.

 

Whom do you say he is, is the question that matters most!

 

Whom do you say the Son of man is?

 

THE QUESTION ANSWERED

 

15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? 16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

 

No longer is the question directed to a third party, now Jesus asks it directly of those who have forsaken all to follow him.  They have also witnessed many things of the Jesus but have yet to ascribe to him his true title till now. At no point until this verse have the disciples who followed Jesus formally identified him as the very Christ, the Messiah, the Shilo prophesied by Jacob on his death bed in Genesis 49.

 

This is he that was promised from the beginning, from the time of Adam and spoken of directly by God to him. This is the lamb that would take away the sin of the world, and this title of Jesus is the title that identifies the very purpose of his coming as a man.

 

Christ is not a surname, it is a title, and it is the title that identifies the Saviour of the world, the Deliverer, even the Son of the living God.

 

But I will have you notice that it is not because of any intellectual ability on the part of Peter that he knows this to be the case. Though all men are held to account for the revelation of Christ that they are given, in Peter we see clearly that this knowledge of Christ, and this understanding of Jesus ministry, is not taken from any wisdom on his part.

 

17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

 

Peter, also known as Simon the son of Jona, was blessed. Jesus refers to Peter as “Blessed” and then reveals to him not only the object of that blessedness, that Jesus is “the Christ, the Son of the living God”, but also the source of the blessed state of Peter;  for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

 

Matthew makes it clear that everything Jesus said and did is the perfect fulfillment of all that was spoken of before, but ultimately it will be God who can reveal him to us individually, and yet even that is built upon all that we have seen and heard.

 

Our faith is not that which is trusted contrary to evidence, it is trusted because of the evidence.

 

Let me explain;

 

By this time Peter had not only witnessed all that Jesus said and did, he also had revealed to him his sinful heart.

 

Turn to Luke 5 as we look at an event that occurred just prior to Peter deciding to follow Jesus.

1” And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret, 2 And saw two ships standing by the lake: but the fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing their nets. 3 And he entered into one of the ships, which was Simon’s, and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the land. And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship. 4 Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught. 5 And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net. 6 And when they had this done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake. 7 And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink. 8 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord. 9 For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the draught of the fishes which they had taken:”

 

In the very presence of the Holy One of Israel Peter had revealed to him his own sin nature. Knowing our own sin is always evidence to us especially in the presence of that which is holy.  This too is evidence, it is very personal and it is something that only you can know is real. So too is it when it comes to placing your faith and trust in Christ.

Brethren, this is not like joining hands and jumping in a pool together. This decision to put your faith in Christ is THE MOST PERSONAL MATTER OF THEM ALL.

 

If you refuse to trust Christ for your sin, you will not stand with anyone else at the Judgement seat of God, you will stand alone and you will be held to account.

 

Seeking forgiveness of Christ, no matter how we might like to have it done, is PERSONAL.

 

Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

 

 

 

 

THE MAN IDENTIFIED

 

15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? 16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

 

In Matthew chapter 11 we have the record of a man who enquired directly of Jesus to know who he is for he had heard about the work Jesus had done and wanted assurance that he was whom the enquirer had been expecting.

 

Matt 11:2-6

 

2 Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples, 3 And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another? 4 Jesus answered and said unto them, Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see: 5 The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them. 6 And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.

 

John was looking for and desiring confirmation that Jesus is indeed the Christ, the Son of the living God.

 

John recognized what the ministry, what the works of Christ should look like. John knew what it was that he should expect to see, if this is the “very Christ”.

 

John looked carefully for the conclusion of the fulfillment of his own ministry.

John knew that his ministry would close with Christ, stating in Johns Gospel account that

 

He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled. 30 He must increase, but I must decrease. (John 3:29-30)

 

And so we see how Jesus answers the question of who he is, saying

 

Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see: 5 The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them.

 

And Peter knew it when he identified the man saying  Thou art the Christ.

 

But there was more of The Christ that was to be identified with the Christ. There is more about who he is that was to describe who he is.

 

Turn to Matt 21:1-5

 

1 And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethphage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples, 2 Saying unto them, Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her: loose them, and bring them unto me. 3 And if any man say ought unto you, ye shall say, The Lord hath need of them; and straightway he will send them. 4 All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, 5 Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass.

 

Matthews account is not only distinct from the other Gospel accounts because it reveals The Christ, but it also stands apart for its account of the Christ as the Legal King of Israel, in the Line of King David. This passage shows his entering as King in line with the ancient prophecy concerning him in Zechariah 9:9.

 

But from the very beginning of Matthews account, from the first verse, Matthew, as a Jew, is showing to the Jews, that Jesus is the Legal heir to the throne of David through his adopted father Joseph. In Matthew Jesus is clearly presented as the Lion of the Tribe of Judah, the rightful King of Israel.  His appearance on a Donkey was key to the nature of his first coming.

 

Tradition in the ancient world was identified that any King whose appearance to a foreign nation was made upon a horse was seen as a threat to that nation, a virtual declaration of war, an entrance expected to come by force. But any king who appeared to a foreign nation on a donkey, was seen as desiring terms of peace. Terms of reconciliation. It was non-threatening, it was meek, or “lowly” as Zechariah renders it.

 

This was given to identify the Christ perfectly in his nature to the people whom he came to gather and to save;

 

 And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way. And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest. (Mt 21:8-9)

 

On a donkey desiring reconciliation is how Christ came when he was promised to come the first time. But when he comes again he will not present himself to the world on a donkey. When Jesus comes the second time it will not be for reconciliation, it will not be peace that is offered to the foreign land who has rejected both him and all those who have preached of him, when Jesus comes again it will be upon a Horse and not a donkey, let’s consider the distinction.

 

Turn to Revelation 19:11-16

 

11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. 12  His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. 13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

 

14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. 15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. 16 And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.

 

THE MAN IS IDENTIFIED

 

The man is both Saviour and King, he comes to offer both reconciliation and judgement. This is the Christ and Peter knew that well. It is high time we also know THE FULL IDENTITY OF THE MAN.

 

For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; (1 Tim 2:5)

 

 

THE SON REVEALED

 

15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? 16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

 

Peter came to understand that there is no distinction between the Christ and the Son of God, they are one and the same person and he knew it well. Jesus Christ is the fulfilment of all that was written, all that was anticipated, and all that was hoped for. He is the reconciliation of Israel and the Saviour of the world. He is the promised redeemer, the resurrection and the life. And he came to claim his place in history as it was written.

 

But for doing so he would become the bane of mankind.

 

He came, a light into the world, but men loved darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil and as such he would also be betrayed by those he came to save.

 

John reminds us that: He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

 

And we find in the record given us of Matthew that Jesus himself refers back to the ancient telling’s of his betrayal and his sentence, turn with me to Matthew 26:47

 

Jesus had to pray and it was here that he would be betrayed by the man whom Matthew records had valued Christ at 30 pieces of Silver, another unique reference found only in Matthew’s Gospel account (this chapter 26:15 and concluding in 27:9).

 

But now he comes

 

47 And while he yet spake, lo, Judas, one of the twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and elders of the people. 48 Now he that betrayed him gave them a sign, saying, Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he: hold him fast. 49 And forthwith he came to Jesus, and said, Hail, master; and kissed him. 50 And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come? Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him. 51 And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest’s, and smote off his ear. 52 Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword. 53  Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels? 54 But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be? 55 In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me. 56 But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled.

 

Fronted forcefully through what can only be considered kangaroo courts, Jesus appears before the Highpriest who also recognises that the Christ is the Son of God and he questions the Lord saying (Mt 26:62-64)

 

62 … Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee? 63 But Jesus held his peace. And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God. 64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

 

Jesus was thus taken, he was beaten, mocked, scourged and nailed to a cross through wrist and feet,  he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. There is something that this ancient prophet tells us so plainly and sits to this day so truly and that is that;

 

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

 

The guilt of our sin will continue to weigh us down, it is a burden that we simply cannot bare but a burden that the Son of God came to carry for us.

 

Being the Christ tells us why he came, he came to save.

Being the Son of God tells us that he can accomplish it.

 

Turn with me to the last mention of that which was fulfilled in Matthew, turn to Matt 27:35

 

And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots. 36 And sitting down they watched him there;

 

As you sit, can you see him?

 

He was the one promised to come for you.

 

He is the one who today gives himself as a sacrifice for you.

 

As you sit, can you see him?

 

he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

 

An exchange is offered to you, will you take it?

Will you believe all that the ancients have spoken concerning him?

Will you be the object for which all he has done is fulfilled?

Will you believe?

 

 

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