| EDITED By Rev. Vijai Valtati Vinay
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"Not Far from the Kingdom" A teacher of the Law wanted to know the greatest commandment, the Lord had this to say about him after His answer. Mark 12:28-34. PDF
"Stretch Out Your Hand" What blessings can a man get from being in worship where the Lord is? What great and wonderful blessing you and I could receive if we would "Stretch Our Our Hand". Mark 3:1-7 PDF
The Greek Text of the New Testament. -- A quick review of the various families of Greek texts used for making modern translations today. HTML (PDF in 5x8 format)
Studies in the Sermon on the Mount. Twenty-seven full content lesson outlines ready to be downloaded and printed out into 4-page lesson sheets. Good for either preaching or studying in a Bible class. Lessons c. 1992 by Charles E. Crouch and you have his permission to use them in a classroom.
1. Repentance. Mark 1:15; Luke 13:3; Acts 3:19.
2. Justification. Romans 5:1; Titus 3:7.
3. Regeneration. Titus 3:5.
4. New birth. John 3:3; 1 Peter 1:23; 1 John 3:9.
5. Sanctification subsequent to justification. Romans 5:2; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 1 Thessalonians 4:3; Hebrews 13:12.
6. Holiness. Luke 1:75; 1 Thessalonians 4:7; Hebrews 12:14.
7. Water baptism. Matthew 28:19; Mark 1:9, 1 0; John 3:22, 23; Acts 8:36, 38.
8. Baptism with the Holy Ghost subsequent to cleansing; the enduement of power for service. Matthew 3:11; Luke 24:49, 53; Acts 1:4-8.
9. The speaking in tongues as the Spirit gives utterance as the initial evidence of the baptism of the Holy Ghost. John 15:26; Acts 2:4; 10:44-46; 19:1-7.
10. Spiritual gifts. 1 Corinthians 12:1,7,10,28,31; 1 Corinthians 14:1.
11. Signs following believers. Mark 16:17-20; Romans 15:18, 19; Hebrews 2:4.
12. Fruit of the Spirit. Romans 6:22; Galatians 5:22, 23; Ephesians 5:9; Philippians 1: 11.
13. Divine healing provided for all in the atonement. Psalm 103:3; Isaiah 53:4, 5; Matthew 8:17; James 5:14-16; 1 Peter 2:24.
14. The Lord's Supper. Luke 22:17-20; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26.
15. Washing the saints' feet. John 13:4-17; 1 Timothy 5:9, 10.
16. Tithing and giving. Genesis 14:18-20; 28:20-22; Malachi 3: 10; Luke 11:42; 1 Corinthians 9:6-9; 16:2; Hebrews 7:1-21.
17. Restitution where possible. Matthew 3:8; Luke 19:8, 9.
18. Premillennial second coming of Jesus. First, to resurrect the dead saints and to catch away the living saints to Him in the air. 1 Corinthians 15:52; 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17; 2 Thessalonians 2: 1. Second, to reign on the earth a thousand years. Zechariah 14:4; 1 Thessalonians 4:14; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10; Jude 14, 15; Revelation 5:10; 19:11-21; 20:4-6.
19. Resurrection. John 5:28, 29; Acts 24:15; Revelation 20:5, 6.
20. Eternal life for the righteous. Matthew 25:46; Luke 18:30; John 10:28; Romans 6:22; 1 John 5:11-13.
21. Eternal punishment for the wicked. No liberation nor annihilation. Matthew 25:41-46; Mark 3:29; 2 Thessalonians 1: 8,9; Revelation 20:10-15; 21:8.
Declaration of Faith
NOTE: [ Ephesians Commentary series and Romans, 1 Corinthians, 1 Thessalonians, Hebrew, 1 &2 Peter…]
NEW TESTAMENT KEY POINTS
Jesus Life Story--------------------------------Matthew, Mark, Luke, John
· Jesus' Birth
o Matthew 2
o Luke 2
· Jesus at Twelve Years Old
o Luke 2
· Jesus' Baptism
o Matthew 3
o Mark 1
o Luke 3
· Jesus' Transfiguration
o Matthew 17
o Mark 9
o Luke 9
· Jesus in Jerusalem
o Matthew 21
o Mark 11
o Luke 19
· Jesus' Last Supper
o Matthew 26
o Mark 14
o Luke 22
o John 13
· Jesus' Trial
o Matthew 26,27
o Mark 14,15
o Luke 22,23
o John 18,19
· Jesus' Crucifixion
o Matthew 27
o Mark 15
o Luke 23
o John 19
· Jesus' Resurrection
o Matthew 28
o Mark 16
o Luke 24
o John 20
· Jesus' Kingdom of Heaven
o Matthew 5,8,10,12,13,18,19
o Mark 4
o Luke 6,12,13,17
· Jesus' Statements on How to Live
o Matthew 5,6,7,18,23
o Mark 12
· Jesus' Story-Illustrations
o Matthew 7,13,18,20,22,23,25
o Mark 12
o Luke 8,11,12,14,15,16,18,19,20
o John 10
· Stories About Jesus
o Mark 2
o Luke 5,7,10,17,18,19
o John 2,3,4,6,9
· Lazarus Raised from the Dead
o John 11
· Jesus' Healings/Miracles
o Matthew 8,9,14,15,20
o Mark 4,5,6,7,8,10
o Luke 5,6,7,8,9,13,18
o John 4,5,6
· Jesus' Other Main Points
o Matthew 11,12,16,17,20,25,26
o Mark 3,6,10,12
o Luke 12,13,14,16,17,20
o John 5,8,10,12
· Jesus' Pharisees/Sadducees Disagreements
o Matthew 12,15,22
o Mark 7,10
o Luke 5,6,11,20
o John 8
· Jesus/Disciples Interactions
o Matthew 5,6,7
o Mark 8,9,10,12,13
o Luke 6,9,10,18
o John 14,15,16,17
· Jesus' Points on the "last days"
o Matthew 24
o Mark 13
o Luke 17,21
o John 5,12
· Matthew 10:2-4
· Luke 6:13-16
New Covenant of God with the People:
· Matthew 26:28
· Mark 14:24
· Luke 22:20
· Romans 8:3
· Philippians 3:9
· Hebrews 8:10
· Hebrews 9:15
· Hebrews 10:9-10
Sermon on the Mount----------------------------------------- Matthew 5,6,7
The Beatitudes-------------------------------------------------Matthew 5:3-12
The Lord's Prayer ---------------------------------------------Matthew 6:9-13
Very Often-Quoted Verse-------------------------------------John 3:16
"In Remembrance" of Jesus (Communion/Eucharist):
· Matthew 26:26-29
· Mark 14:22-24
· Luke 22:19-20
· 1 Corinthians 10:16-17; 11:23-26
The Great Gift:
· Matthew 26:6-13
· Mark 14:1-9
· John 12:1-8
"Doubting Thomas"------------------------------------------------John 20:25-29
Jesus after Crucifixion
Stephen Martyred--------------------------------------------------Acts 7
Paul's Way to Pray-----------------------------------------------Ephesians 5:20
Paul's Dead-to-Life Questions (Seed Yields Plant):
1 Corinthians 15:35-58
Paul's Christian Soldiers
· Ephesians 6:10-17
· 1 Thessalonians 5:8
Famous Statements from Paul
· Romans 8:31
· 1 Corinthians 10:31
· 1 Corinthians 13:13
· Galatians 6:7
· 1 Thessalonians 5:1-2
· 2 Timothy 4:7
Conversion of Saul (renamed Paul) to Christianity
· Acts 9,22
Paul's Ministry and Growth of Christianity
· Main Points
o Romans (main Christian thoughts) 5,6,8,11,12,13,14,15
o 1 Corinthians 7,8,10,11,14,15
o 2 Corinthians 3,5
o Galatians 2,5,6
o Ephesians 5,6
o 1 Timothy 2
· Paul's Points on the "last days"
o Romans 11
o 1 Corinthians 1,7,10,15
o Ephesians 1
o 1 Thessalonians 4,5
o 2 Thessalonians 1,2
· Paul's Other Points
o 1 Corinthians 6,10,11,12,13,16
o 2 Corinthians 5,7
o Ephesians 4
o Philippians 3,4
o Colossians 1,2,3
o 1 Thessalonians 4,5
o 1 Timothy 6
· Paul's Predestination Beliefs
o Romans 8,9
o 1 Corinthians 1,2
o Ephesians 1
Jesus Likened to Melchizedek--------------------------------- Hebrews 7:24-25
Command for Christians------------------------------------ 1 John 3:23
God is Love--------------------------------------------------- 1 John 4:8,9
Description of John's Vision of the "last days"------------------ The Revelation
o Judgment: The Revelation 20:11-15
o New Jerusalem (i.e., Heaven): The Revelation 21,22
Further Points on the "last days"
2 Peter 3
I [ Vijai V ], Humbly Honor and Thank Dr. Grant C. Richison
The Life of Christ
The Four Gospels (Part 1 of 2)
Rev. Mark Perkins, Pastor
Denver Bible Church
326 E. Colorado Ave.
Denver, Colorado 80210
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In the middle of the 6th decade of the first century, Christianity had reached a crisis. Nero had begun his persecutions, and the Romans had begun to suppress the open rebellion of the zealot Jews in Palestine.
The church had been well established throughout the Roman Empire, and many doctrinal epistles had been written in support of the church.
Paul was in prison; many of the great believers of the eyewitness generation had died from natural causes and violent persecution.
It appeared as though the prophecy of Christ about the destruction of the Temple was about to come to pass due to the hopeless war in the Holy Land.
It was because of these intense adversities that God the Holy Spirit inspired three men in three different cities to write gospels - records of the life of Christ.
The three locations of writing were widely and evenly distributed.
Mark recorded Peter's gospel in Rome.
Luke wrote his gospel somewhere in Greece, probably in Achaia.
Matthew wrote from Antioch in Syria.
These three gospels were written for various reasons. Matthew wrote to Jews, in order to convince them of the Messiahship of Jesus. He hoped to convert them before the folly of the Zealot movement resulted in their persecution and destruction. Already war was begun in Palestine.
Luke wrote to Greeks in order to provide an accurate history of the events of the incarnation. His second work, the book of Acts, is the accurate history of the early church.
Mark wrote to record the life of Christ as told by Peter. It is likely that Peter was in prison and close to martyrdom when he dictated the story of Christ's life. Peter no doubt thought it imperative that the story get out. The abbreviated nature of the narrative reveals both Peter's nature and that he was in a hurry.
These three gospels, although very similar in their record of events, arose from independent sources.
Peter told the story to Mark as he remembered it.
Luke had apparently interviewed a number of people over the years and put these materials together to form his gospel.
Matthew had already written quite a lot of material in Aramaic, which had to do with the prophecies concerning the life of Christ. He used this material to form the basis for a number of his passages, and filled in the rest from memory.
There was no written source on which these three are all based. The Q hypothesis is pure bunk, thought up by arrogant German scholars who had nothing better to do because they had rejected the inspired nature of the Word.
These three gospels are often called the synoptic gospels, because they have roughly the same record of events. Synoptic means to 'see together'.
These synoptic gospels were all written within a year or two from one another. It is therefore doubtful that they could have relied on one another. The times of writing are as follows (all dates approximate).
Mark - 65 A.D.
Matthew and Luke - 66 A.D.
Notice that in the time of crisis it was important from the Spirit's point of view to provide knowledge of the life of Christ! Remember, the Spirit chose when to inspire these works. The gospel of John is very similar in that it is inspired during a time of great adversity for the church. John wrote his gospel in the eighties, most likely the late eighties.
The problems of harmonizing the gospels
Critics of the gospels have been very skeptical about the accuracy of the gospel accounts because even the synoptic gospels do not appear (at least on the surface) to harmonize well.
However when the gospels are analyzed and then harmonized by those whose work goes beyond just a surface appraisal, things work out quite well. One such harmony is Dr. Thomas' A Harmony of the Gospels, which was written together with Dr. Gundry.
Dr. Thomas lists the following as problems with harmonization on page 302 of his book.
Accounts of Christ's words sometimes differ. One evangelist's report of the same conversation, saying, or discourse may be more less complete than another's. Differences may occur in grammatical construction. Synonyms may be substituted, verb voice or tense changed, or nouns replaced by pronouns. There may be differences in the order of discussion.
Sometimes the differences in details reported even involve what appear to be contradictions.
Occasionally, the same or similar statements will be found in contexts which appear to reflect different situations.
Somewhat similar events occur in different situations.
Sometimes what really appears to be the same event will be reported in a different order in another gospel.
Sometimes diverse descriptive details are given for what appears to be the same event; sometimes these details may have the appearance of discrepancy.
The gospel writers do not always report the same events.
The big issue is this: Do these problems undermine the historical integrity of the gospels? If they do, then they undermine the inspired nature of the word.
In the last century, the German scholars saw these problems and failed to account for them. Instead, they arrogantly denied the inspired nature of the Word, and the ministers and the people followed. The result was two world wars, both started by a nation full of people who called themselves Christians. We stand on the brink of the same possibility in our own nation.
Do not fear, however, for responsible scholarship more than accounts for these problems without compromising the historical integrity and inspired nature of these documents.
The general solutions are as follows:
Jesus spoke three languages: Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic. The gospels were all written in Greek. Therefore, by necessity many of the gospel accounts of Jesus' words are translations. In translation, there is plenty of room of variance without losing meaning.
Sometimes the words are translated quite literally, but even so the use of synonyms is quite acceptable. Sometimes the words are translated more loosely in order to emphasize the impact of the words. This is also perfectly acceptable.
In modern language we have many punctuation marks to indicate what is a direct quote and what is not; what is a clarification by the author, and what is a clarification by the original speaker; even footnotes are employed to refer to source materials. None of these things were available to the ancient writer.
Because of this it is difficult to tell when the writer is doing one of these things in his translation of Jesus' words (even if he is translating). Suffice it to say that God the Holy Spirit is the supernatural director of all translations of Jesus' words, and He ensured their accuracy.
When there are differences in translation, we can use them to amplify all the translations.
Dr. Thomas summarizes this principle in this way: "What one does expect to be reproduced in ordinary discussion are the striking or important statements, the leading thoughts, the major divisions or topics, and the general drift of discussion including transitions from one topic to another. While different reports are expected to agree on these matters, it is also expected that there will be differences on details such as changes of person, substitution of pronouns for nouns or vice versa, changes in tense, voice, or mood of the verbs, and substitution of synonyms are too trivial to be taken as serious objections to a reporter's accuracy in ordinary discussion.
"While wording is important, meaning can be conveyed in a variety of ways. Verbal inspiration does not imply that truth can be accurately communicated in only one way. Rather, it means that the manner in which the Holy Spirit did speak through the human agents is inspired and hence accurate, word for word.".
The people of the ancient world, especially the Jewish people, had highly trained memories. They were often required to memorize long passages of the Old Testament, and even in a language that was not their native tongue.
This, together with the ministry of the Holy Spirit led to tremendous accuracy with reference to the meaning of the translation.
When a translation is direct from the Greek, we can expect greater accuracy in the quotation of Jesus' words, but even so, one writer for his own reason may add or subtract from the quotation without a violation of the principle of inspiration.
Also, Christ no doubt repeated many of His words over the course of His ministry; this does not mean that He said the exact same thing every time. Even during the same sermon it is likely that He repeated Himself. One gospel writer may have recorded one part, while another different parts with slightly different wording.
Differences in the details of what appear to be the same event may in fact be a record of two quite different occurrences.
Sometimes, a writer will arrange his material according to subject and therefore take things out of chronological order. This too is acceptable, and does not corrupt the inspired nature of the text.
The conclusion is this: that harmonizing the gospels presents no major problems with reference to inspiration. The accounts do harmonize well, and the problems that go with a harmony are easily and rationally accounted for.
The Gospel of Matthew
For each gospel, we will follow this order:
Circumstances of writing
Purpose of writing, and
Characteristics of the gospel.
Matthew - God used an outcast. His name is a transliteration of the Aramaic word which means "gift of God."
In his own Gospel, Matthew uses his regular name. In other gospels, the name Levi is used. It is likely that Matthew became his name after his conversion.
Matthew was a Jewish tax collector. It is likely that he was fairly well off financially because of his profession. This makes his decision to follow Christ all the more remarkable, because he left it all behind - Luke 5:28. It is likely that he worked at the toll house in Capernaum.
When he decided to follow our Lord, he threw a big party, and invited all his friends. His decision to follow Christ was immediate.
As a tax collector, Matthew was an outcast in Jewish society. He apparently had no friends who were devout in the Jewish faith for at his party there were only other tax collectors and sinners.
The Roman tax collectors were hated by the Jews because the Roman taxes were in addition to the Jewish taxes.
They were also hated because they represented the occupying forces of the Roman Empire.
The tax collectors made their living by inflating the Roman taxes. They essentially worked on commission.
Tax collectors were wealthy, but hated by their own society. They had to live with a tremendous amount of prejudice.
Because of this prejudice their social options were severely limited. They could only socialize with others who were outcasts.
It was easy for Matthew to follow Christ, considering his personal circumstances. Social isolation does not make it easy to enjoy personal wealth. No doubt he knew of the supernatural essence of Christ's ministry, and he may have even heard Him speak. It is often the outcast that finds it easiest to follow Christ.
The Circumstances Surrounding the Writing of the Matthew
Of the circumstances of the writing of this gospel we know very little. What little we can draw comes from inside the book.
The Target Readership for Matthew
The target readership for Matthew's gospel was most likely Jewish believers in Palestine. A secondary audience may be found in Jewish audiences everywhere. His was the most read of all the gospels in the first century. This popularity is a good testimony to its arrangement.
The Purpose of the Gospel of Matthew
The purpose of this gospel was generally to awaken and establish faith in Jesus Christ.
That this gospel was written primarily with a Jewish audience in mind brings a more specific purpose: To establish Christ as the Messiah and to answer the attacks of Jewish critics on the issue of the person of Christ.
It was also intended as a tool for use in evangelism for other believers.
Finally, it was probably intended as a last ditch effort to stem the tide of destruction which was descending upon the Jews in Palestine.
The Jews were their own worst enemies. They were extremely self-destructive, and especially so since their rejection of Christ as Messiah.
Their self-destructive tendencies culminated in a great number of them choosing the way of the zealot - armed resistance without virtue.
The way of the zealot could only result in the destruction of the Jews in the land, and of Jerusalem. The Romans' method of warfare was far superior to that of the zealots. Anyone with common sense could see the inevitable destruction of the Jewish armies.
Therefore, Matthew wrote his gospel as a last-ditch effort to stem the tide of destruction that had welled up among the Jews in Palestine.
Matthew wrote just as the zealots began their armed revolt in 66 A.D.
General Characteristics of Matthew
The most striking of the characteristics of this gospel is its emphasis on Christ as the Messianic King promised by the Old Testament prophets. Time and again Matthew points out some event in Christ's life, or one of His characteristics as being a fulfillment of a prophecy. He especially concentrates on Christ as the fulfillment of the Davidic covenant.
Matthew also concentrates on the kingdom of the Messianic king. He uses the term, "the kingdom of heaven" 32 times, but it is not mentioned elsewhere in Scripture. He stresses both the spiritual and political aspects of the kingdom. Matthew records ten parables about the kingdom which are found in none of the other gospels. His is the gospel of the New Covenant for Israel.
Matthew's gospel has a very Jewish flavor, yet at the same time he often takes the opportunity to denounce the Pharisees and their incorrect practices and perceptions of the Messiah. The latter is probably due to Matthew's social isolation. No doubt he was often victimized by the Pharisees for being a tax collector. Like so many who are the victims of prejudice, Matthew has special insight into those who perpetuate such sins.
However, Matthew does not exclude the Gentiles. Matthew was emotionally a Gentile because of his social isolation. He makes sure his readers understand that once the Jews have completely rejected Christ, the kingdom would be transferred to the Gentiles.
Matthew is the one who arranges his material by subject, and aside from the passion week he does not follow the chronological order of events. Matthew, more than any other gospel writer, has an ax to grind. It is a righteous ax, and so he arranges his material to suit the grinding.
In spite of Matthew's choice of arrangement, his gospel retains a great unity and order. This reveals the mind of a tax collector. The order of numbers and accounts lead naturally to literary order. There is great continuity in the order of the subjects, and excellent literary transition.
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AUTHOR: Matthew was a tax-collector in the service of the Roman occupying force and was called by Jesus to 'Follow me' and became one of the Twelve Apostles (Matt. 9:9-13; 10:3; Mark 2:14-17; Luke 5:27-32).
It is said that when Matthew got up from that table to follow Jesus he didn't leave his pen behind. About twenty or thirty years after Jesus went back to heaven the Holy Spirit inspired him to write what we have today as "The Gospel of Matthew."
BACKGROUND: Each Gospel has its own emphasis. The term "Kingdom of Heaven" occurs with such frequency in Matthew that often it is called "The Gospel of the Kingdom."
The Gospel of Matthew was written primarily for Jewish readers. The theme is "The King and His Kingdom." One key word in the book is "fulfilled" for Matthew focuses on how Jesus fulfills the promises of a Redeemer made by inspired writer in the Old Testament. (The word is used about 17 times.)
The Gospel and the Old Testament
Matthew Mark Luke John
Quotes from the O.T . 53 36 25 20
Allusions to the O.T. 76 27 42 105
129 63 67 125
Nowhere in the four Gospels do we find a single word that Matthew spoke. Yet in his Gospel he gives us the words and works of Jesus Christ, "the Son of David, the Son of Abraham" (1:1)
Words of Christ in the Four Gospels
MATTHEW MARK LUKE JOHN
Total number of Verses 1071 678 1151 879
Verses of Christ's Words 644 285 586 419
Approximate percentage 60% 42% 50% 50%
DESIGN: The book was written to help the Jews understand Jesus as King and to establish his spiritual rule over a spiritual kingdom. In Matthew Jesus' Kingship is alluded to some 10 times: 1:6; 2:2; 5:35; 21:5; 25:34; 25:40; 27:29; 27:37; 27:42. The word "kingdom" is found 54 times.
Matthew talks about the Kingdom of Heaven while Mark and Luke describes it as the Kingdom of God. This indicates the kingdom is:
· Divine-- its origin is of God above and not man below
· Spiritual-- in nature, and not earthly and sensual
· Universal-- not a kingdom confined to Palestine, etc.
· Not National-- not racial, but a kingdom of faith
Matthew described Jesus as the Doer and the Teacher. None of the four Gospels is a biography in the modern sense of the word. In fact, John doubted that a complete biography of Jesus could ever be written (John 21:25). There are many details about the earthly life of Jesus that are not given in any of the Gospels.
Matthew does not try to give us a chronological outline of the events in Jesus's life. Rather, he tends to organize and group similar incidents of "doings" and "teachings" together into ten alternating sections. He records more than 20 specific miracles and 6 major messages. Over 60% of his book focuses on the teachings of Jesus.
Matthew points that when he wrote his Gospel God's Kingdom was what the people in the first century was calling the "church" (16:18; 18:17). The Greek word translated church means "a called- out assembly." In the NT this word refers to a local assembly of obedient believers. In the OT, Israel was God's called-out people, beginning with the call of Abraham (Gen. 12:1f; Deut 7:6-8). In fact, Stephen called the nation of Israel "the church (assembly) in the wilderness" (Acts 7:38), for they were God's called-out people. But the NT church is a different people, for it is composed of both Jews and Gentiles (Gal. 3:28). Even though Matthew wrote primarily for the Jews, he has a "universal" element in his book that includes the Gentiles. For example, Gentile leaders came to worship the infant Jesus (2:1-12); Jesus performed miracles for Gentiles and even commended them for their faith (8:5-13; 15:21-28). At at crisis hour in Jesus' ministry He turned to a prophecy about the Gentiles (12:14-21). Even in parables, Jesus indicated that the blessings which Israel refused would be shared with the Gentiles (22:8-10; 21:40-46) and the Lord's commission involves all nations (28:19-20).
"The Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand"
1. The Revelation of the King (Ch 1-10)
. . His person (1-4); His principles (5-7); His power (8-10)
2. The Revellion Against the King -- (Ch 11-20)
3. The Rejection of the King (Ch. 21-27)
4. The Resurrection of the King (Ch. 28) Matthew Presents "Jesus The King"
- - - - - - - -
1. A King's Name -- "They shall call his name Emmanuel," Matt. 1:23. He had a royal name that declared God's presence.
2. A King's Position -- "Out of Judah shall come a Governor that shall rule my people, Israel." Matt. 2:6. He is over his kingdom, the church ( Matt. 16:18; and see Ephesians 1:22).
3. A King's Announcement -- "Prepare ye the way of the Lord; make his paths straight," Matt. 3:3. His coming conformed to a Royal visit.
4. A King's Introduction -- "This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased," Matt. 3:17. His coming was heralded by John the Baptism, by God the Father and the Holy Spirit.
5. A King's Authority -- "He taught them as one having authority," Matt. 7:29; ( Matt. 28:18-20 ). The King's authority was absolute-- answerable only to God.
6. A King's Loyalty -- "He that is not with me is against me, and he that gathereth not with me, scattereth abroad," Matt. 12:30. He has a demand for our loyalty.
7. A King's Enemies -- "From that time forth began Jesus to show unto his disciples how that he must go unto Jerusalem and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed..." Matt. 16:21. Jesus suffered at the hands of the chief priest, Herod, and Pilate.
8. A King's Love -- "For the son of man came not to be ministered unto but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many," Matt. 20:28. A King's love for his kingdom and subjects, but Jesus is the supreme king, he loved his enemies.
9. A King's Sacrifice -- "And they crucified him... This is Jesus the King of the Jews," Matt. 27:35-37. David suffered at the hands of those who should have loved him- his son Absalom.
10. A King's Victory -- "He is not here, for he is risen, as he said," Matt. 28:6. Victory in battle was the mark of successful kings. Jesus came to do battle against Satan and He won on every encounter (Heb. 4;12; 1 John 3:8)
11. A King's Glory -- "When the son of man shall come... the king shall say... come ye blessed of my father, inherit the kingdom," 25:31-34. "...and then shall he sit upon the throne of this glory" 25:31. A King's glory came on his coronation in Heaven upon his victory and conquest.
SERMON - - - - - -
The King's Recipe for Happiness
1. In Matthew 5:38-45 Jesus teaches us how a Christian's conduct should distinguish him from people of the world.
2. It is a part of the "Sermon on the Mount" and begins with the word "blessed." There is no question about the kind of life Jesus came to impart. The Master Teacher provides a recipe for happiness. It is not a "short-cut" but a "sure-cut" to happiness.
I. TURN THE OTHER CHEEK (5:39)
1. "But I say to you, do not resist him who is evil; but whoever slaps you and your right cheek, turn to him the other also," (5:39).
. . a. Jesus is not teaching pacifism; he's not talking about war, self-defense, or the necessity of protecting our nation, our homes, or even our lives.
. . b. He is stating a great principle Do not try to get even; do not seek revenge.
2. Jesus' life was an example of this behavior.
. . a. Many times he was insulted, but never lashed back.
. . b. Isaiah 53:7.
3. Illustration of the famous surgeon and the artist.
II. LOVE FOR YOUR ENEMIES (5.44).
1. "But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you," (5:44).
. . a. A hard thing to do but it has happiness wrapped up in it.
. . b. When you pray for others you get a blessings for yourself.
2. The best way to get rid of your enemies.
. . a. A preacher in a meeting awaken in his motel room in the middle of the night by a telephon
The Life of Christ
The Four Gospels (Part 2 of 2)
Rev. Mark Perkins, Pastor
Denver Bible Church
326 E. Colorado Ave.
Denver, Colorado 80210
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The Gospel of Mark
The Author(s) - Mark and Peter
There are really two persons behind the writing of this gospel. The one who gave dictation, Peter, and the one who received it, Mark.
The following is an extraordinary statement: Mark was there when both Paul and Peter died. It is extraordinary because Mark began life as a coward, and was for while in great disfavor among the other disciples. This is a testimony to the grace of God.
Mark was Jewish, and grew up in Jerusalem. No doubt he was aware of the person of Christ and the events of His life. There is even some speculation that he was the young man of Mark 14:51-52. The actions of that young man are certainly commensurate with his character flaw of cowardice which he expressed about 20 years later.
His mother's name was Mary, and he was a relative of Barnabas. When Paul and Barnabas took Mark along on the first journey, he left for home before their ascent of the Taurus mountain range on their way to the interior of Asia Minor, Acts 13:5.
This desertion set Paul's heart against Mark. When Barnabas and Paul decided on a later missionary journey, Paul refused to take Mark along on the basis of his former desertion, Acts 15:36-39. In fact, Paul and Barnabas had a sharp disagreement over the issue, and they parted ways at that point. Barnabas believed in Mark.
Whatever transpired in the next 10 or 15 years (AD 49 to AD 62), Mark had won himself over to Paul. During Paul's first imprisonment, Mark was there with him, Col. 4:10; Philem 24. In Philemon (62 AD) Paul calls Mark a fellow worker. In Colossians, Paul reminds the Colossians to welcome Mark if he comes that way. Paul is restoring Mark's reputation to others.
Mark was with Peter in Rome (called Babylon by Peter) 1 Pet. 5:13, and sent his greeting along with Peter's letter. Peter affectionately calls Mark his son.
Mark apparently left Rome shortly after Peter's first epistle (@65 AD), because when Paul is imprisoned a second time at Rome, he calls for Mark, who is with Timothy at Ephesus, 2 Tim. 4:11. Paul calls Mark 'well useful for service'. He considers Mark the deacon type, and finds great favor with him in this role. The word for well useful is euchrestos, a very positive and complimentary word.
If Mark obeyed Paul's command, and it is likely he did, then he was present when Paul was executed.
If Mark was there for Paul's execution, then it is equally likely that he was there for Peter's, because they were both martyred at about the same time, and both in Rome.
Mark watched the deaths of these two great believers. He faced death with courage this time, a changed man because of the truth residing in his soul. This is the man who ran at the arrest of Jesus, and who ran in the face of the unknown at the base of the Taurus mountains. Mark was a man who feared, and yet by the grace of God who grew, and then endured. It is extraordinary that he is the one chosen by God the Holy Spirit to put down in writing the gospel as told by Peter, probably just before or just after Peter's death.
Remember Mark next time that you fail! And remember him the next time that you are ready to write someone off!
Peter - Peter's name was also Simon. The testimony of Peter always stands behind the writing of Mark in this epistle.
If there is one character trait of Peter which rises above all others, it is his emotionalism. Peter often let his emotions rule his thinking, much to his detriment and regret.
Peter is enthusiastic, emotional, swift to speak without thinking, full of love and anger, sometimes legalistic and snobbish, and Jewish in a prejudicial way. He is one of the independent, rebellious Galileans. He loves Christ so much, yet he cannot muster the spiritual resources to remain with Him in His arrest, trial, and death.
He is the second to the tomb on the third day, and enters first. He is the first of the disciples to see Christ after the resurrection. He is unsure of his standing with Christ immediately after the resurrection. Peter is a leader and very much a preacher, though not careful about what he says. He makes mistakes, he broods, and then he seeks and needs forgiveness in a desperate emotional way. In the end, he writes two epistles about suffering, and speaks his remembrances of Christ in a brief, but humble manner.
The gospel includes those incidents which place Peter in an unflattering light. In these he is brutally honest about his mistakes.
It excludes those incidents which place Peter in a flattering light.
Peter is an early leader in the church, but fades from the limelight in about 50 AD Nothing is heard from him until he writes his epistles in the early 60's, and then dictates his gospel story to Mark in the mid-60's.
Probably the best analogy to Peter's early character is a politician on the campaign trail. Always promising, always in the limelight, but never following through.
Circumstances Surrounding the Writing of Mark
The place is Rome, the situation the persecutions of Nero. Paul and Peter are in prison, soon to die at the command of Nero himself.
Mark is there with them. Peter is anxious to tell the story of Christ before he dies, and he does so, dictating to Mark.
It is not clear whether Mark actually composed this gospel before or after Peter's death. It is not important. This was a really hard time for believers in Jesus Christ, and especially so in Rome.
The Intended Readers of Mark's Gospel.
It is most likely that Peter (and Mark) had a Gentile audience in mind. This is especially interesting since Peter began with a prejudice against the Gentiles, and one which was difficult for him to leave behind. It apparently took him more than 20 years to do so. His gospel is devoid of anything that would be offensive to a Gentile, and it does not presuppose an extensive knowledge of the Old Testament.
Also, the Roman audience would have taken priority, since it was the closest.
The Purpose of the Gospel of Mark
Mark was written to win converts to Christianity. Mark portrays Christ as a suffering servant. This image fits well the Christians in Rome, and so the Romans would have been well acquainted with it.
To encourage those in Rome who were enduring persecution. Peter always had a heart for those who were suffering. He mentions the persecution of Christ often to encourage those who endured similar sufferings.
The greatest testimony and greatest encouragement for those who suffer is that of Christ.
The greatest testimony for those who are in unbelief is the suffering of Christ.
Remember, this gospel goes out to the very hotbed of the Neronian persecution. It is a voice that rises above the cacophony of persecution and says, "but it is true".
Characteristics of Mark's Gospel
Brevity - it is easily the shortest of the gospels, and conspicuous among the missing are the nativity, the genealogy, and most of Christ's longer discourses.
Action - Peter tells the story as he lived his own life. The story moves at a very fast pace, and its transitions force the narrative into a bang-bang story. The crowds are always pressing, the demons always attacking, miracles constantly being performed. Peter includes action and excludes doctrine. Mark has been called the camera man of the gospel writers for his vivid portrayal of the life of Christ.
Believability - the story is told in simple and even rough language. Peter's Greek lacks perfection, but it gives the gospel a nice 'I was there' touch that makes it quite vivid and easy to believe. Many minor details are included about Christ and His person. Even the bad things are left in the story.
Centered on Christ as the Son of God and as the servant of man. This would have been a good combination for his Gentile audience. The distinction of servanthood would have been especially appropriate since their Gods were ones who demanded service instead of those who would give it. The contrast would be striking.
Chronological - Apparently, Mark's gospel follows closely the actual chronological order of events in the life of Christ.
John, whose surname was Mark, is the writer (Acts 12:12, 25). He was the son of a certain Mary of Jerusalem and cousin of Barnabas (Colossians 4:10).
From the fact that the family had large facilities and servants attending the door, Mary appears well off and probably an influential member in the early Jerusalem church. It has been suggested that the upper room may have been at her home and that it continued as a meeting place for the apostles (Cf. Acts 1:13).
Although Mark was a source of contention between Paul and Barnabas at the beginning of the second missionary journey, we see him working with Paul and highly favored a few years later (Col. 4:10; Philemon 24). Mark also worked with Peter and is referred to as his "son" much like Timothy was by Paul. Many believe the young man of Mark 14:51-53 was none other than the young Mark himself.
One of the pupils of the apostle John said that Mark wrote down exactly, without mistake, the words and deeds of Christ though not in chronological order. He says that the Mark wrote down the substance of Peter's preaching.
From Mark 10:45 we can easily determine Mark's object in writing his gospel account, "For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many."
Mark is the briefest of the four gospel accounts. It is a narrative of dynamic action. Jesus is presented as "doing" rather than merely "saying."
1. "Straightway" and "immediately" are used more than 40 times.
2. Mark repeatedly speaks of the impact, the awe, and astonishment that Jesus made on the mind and heart of those who heard him. cf. Mark 1:22; 1:27; 4:41; 6:51; 10:24, 26, etc.
3. Mark tells us more about the emotions of Jesus than other writers. He pictures Jesus:
a. Sighing deeply in His spirit -- 7:34; 8:12.
b. Moved with compassion -- 6:31.
c. Marvelling at their unbelief -- 6:6.
d. Moved with righteous anger -- 3:5; 8:33; 10:14.
e. Looking with love on the rich young ruler -- 10:21.
f. Feeling the pangs of hunger -- 11:12.
g. Becoming tired and needing rest -- 6:31.
4. Mark repeatedly inserts little vivid details which are the hall-marks of an eye-witness.
a. Cf. the added detail to Matthew 18:2 found in Mark 9:36;
b. Cf. Matthew 19:13-15, Luke 18:15-17 and Mark 10:13-16;
c. Mark alone tells how the 5000 were seated, and how they looked like plots of vegetable rows in a garden -- 6:40;
d. Cf. Jesus and disciples on their last journey to Jerusalem -- Matt. 20:17; Luke 18:31; with Mark 10:32.
e. In the story of Jesus stilling the tempest Mark adds one little sentence that makes the picture vivid before our eyes -- 4:38a.
5. Mark is very fond of the historic present. He speaks of events in the present tense instead of the past.
6. Mark often gives us the very Aramaic words Jesus spoke. Indicative of an eye-witness. Mark always then gives the interpretation of those Aramaic words revealing to us he is writing for non-Hebrews (cf. 5:41; 7:34; 7:11; 14:36; 15:34).
(These may have been times when Peter could hear again the very sound of Jesus' voice, and could not help givin g in his sermons the very words that Jesus uttered.)
7. Mark made more use of Latin loanwords than the other gospel accounts and some occur in the New Testament only in Mark. [Note also the evidence of Mark 15:21 and Romans 16:13 which ties his gospel to a Roman audience.]
8. Mark presents Jesus as being addressed as Rabbi or Teacher whereas Matthew and Luke represent Jesus as being addressed by the title "Lord." Some say Matthew and Luke reflect the post-resurrection practice of speaking of Jesus while Mark is faithful to the pre-resurrection way of addressing Jesus.
Purpose -- The very first verse of Mark provides a clear indication of the writer's purpose: to set forth "the good news" and to bear witness to Jesus as the Messiah and the Son of God.
Outline -- MARK -- "The Miracle Working Servant"
I. The Servant's Coming 1:1-13
II. The Servant's Work 1:14 - 13:37
A. Beginning of Galilean Ministry 1:14 - 3:6
B. Later stages of Galilean Ministry 3:7 - 6:13
C. Jesus goes outside Galilee 6:14 - 8:26
D. The way to Jerusalem 8:27 - 10:52
E. Ministry in Jerusalem 11:1 - 13:37
III. The Servant's Death 14:1 - 15:47
IV. The Servant's Resurrection 16:1 - 20
Miracles -- Mark shows Jesus as the miracle-working Servant of God attending to man. Mark's picture is a motion picture showing Jesus in action moving men to God! The Gospel records 35 miracles that Jesus worked.
o 17 miracles of physical healing
o 9 miracles over forces of nature
o 6 specific instances of expulsions of demons
o 3 raised from the dead
Most of the Lord's miracles, however, are unrecorded (cf. Matthew 14:23; Luke 4:40; Matthew 15:30-31; 19:1-2; Luke 6:17-19; Mark 1:32-34; and John 21:25, etc.) The purpose of His miracles were to authenticate the Servant as the Son of God (John 15:24; 20:30,31; Mark 16:20; Hebrews 2:3-4).
SERMON - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
God's Son Was A Teacher
"And when the sabbath day was come, he began to teach in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by his hands?" Mark 6:2.
1. "Never man spake like this man" -- John 7:46; Mark 7:5-13.
2. We may go back to the opening chapters of Genesis and read "And the Lord God commanded man, saying..." (2:16). Thus God became the first instructor and man the first pupil. God instructed man concerning His Will for him.
3. An analysis of the Bible's account of this first teaching situation reveals at least 3 things to us:
1) That God's purpose was to maintain the perfect relationship that existed between man and Himself in the creation.
2) That His method was positive and authoritative. There was nothing obscure, indefinite, or uncertain about what God said. It was "The Lord God commanded the man, saying..."
3) That as long as man obeyed, God's purpose was achieved. It was when man presumed to know more than his teacher that the hitherto happy relationship was dissolved.
4. When man disobeyed God and fell into sin the situation between them was altered. God still loved man and continued to act as his Teacher, but his purpose was no longer to maintain a perfect relationship. It was to restore it.
THE FIRST TEACHERS --
The early teachers --
§ God -- The Patriarchs -- Moses
The early centers of learning --
§ The garden; the family; the kingdom; the synagogue
The Gospel of Luke
The Author - Luke
God used a Gentile doctor. Luke is mentioned only three times in all of the New Testament, yet he is responsible for 28% of it, for he wrote both his gospel and the book of Acts.
Luke is the only Gentile writer of the New Testament, and probably the only second-generation Christian writer. He was not present at the incarnation.
Luke is most likely Greek. He is an excellent writer and historian. In fact, he is the greatest of the historians of antiquity. He is objective, detailed, and well-informed. He writes clearly and keeps things very well ordered.
Paul calls Luke the beloved physician in Colossians 4:14.
Although there were many charlatans in the ancient world, there were also a number of good and skilled physicians.
Medicine did not go much beyond advanced first aid in the ancient world, but such a service was very valuable.
Luke was probably behind Pauls advice for Timothy to take a little wine for his stomach.
At one point, Luke was the only one with Paul during his imprisonment, 2 Tim 4:11.
Luke would have been a valuable addition to a missionary team, considering the hazards of travel in the ancient world. Considering the number of times that Christians were beaten, stoned, or otherwise injured because of their faith, Luke got to practice his profession often.
Luke was not only the team physician, but he was often active in the evangelistic efforts, Acts 16:13. That Luke was a Gentile meant that he would have been valuable in ministering to other Gentiles. Remember, most of the missionary teams were Jewish, and Paul's ministry at first concentrated on teaching at synagogues.
Circumstances and Target Readership.
Luke wrote in about 66-67 AD He wrote his gospel, and later the Acts of the Apostles, to a man by the name of Theophilus. He probably wrote from somewhere in Greece, maybe even Athens. Little else is known about the circumstances of writing.
Luke addresses Theophilus as "most excellent". This title was often used of those who were in prominent social or political positions. Theophilus was likely such a man. By accepting a book dedicated to him, Theophilus would have followed the ancient tradition of taking responsibility for its publication. We owe our thanks to Theophilus for the preservation of this great gospel.
Luke wanted to produce a gospel for Gentile readers, and it is easy on the Hebraisms and explains Jewish customs and localities. He usually quotes the Old Testament when it is contained in a saying of Christ, but not otherwise. There is little emphasis on the fulfillment of prophecy.
Purpose of the Gospel of Luke
Luke comes right out and says it in chapter 1:4: "so that you might know the exact truth about the things you have been taught."
It is Luke's intent to be precise, and to more fully explain the subjects of which he has already spoken.
Verses 1-3 in the first chapter reveal Luke's motive and method: "Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile an account of the things accomplished among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and servants of the word have handed them down to us, it seemed fitting for me as well, having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, to write it our for you in consecutive order, most excellent Theophilus,"
Luke wrote for Theophilus, but with the intent that Theophilus would publish this work, and pass it along to many others. Luke's purpose is broad in its scope.
It is apparent that there were many falsehoods and distortions going around about the person and life of Christ. Luke wants to set the record strait with an exact narrative of the events.
Of course, by getting the record straight, Luke's desire is for evangelism. He wants people to know the truth, and to identify Christ as their savior. Luke has a great emphasis on the cross, and the end of the life of Christ. This reveals his designs for evangelism.
Characteristics of Luke's Gospel
Luke's gospel is much more comprehensive than the others. It begins many months before the other synoptic gospels, and it ends after the ascension. Many details are included here which are not in the others. Luke is a diligent and thorough historian.
Luke concentrates on praise and worship more so than the other gospels. He records the four great nativity songs - Mary's, Zacharias', that of the angels, and Simeon's.
Luke emphasizes the humanity of Christ, and the perfection of that humanity.
Luke stresses that Christ makes salvation available to all men, and not just to Jews. He clearly shows the impact of Christ on the lives of many men, women, and children. Both the rich and poor, the Jew, the Samaritan, and the Gentile are included. Luke often shows this impact as occurring right inside people's homes.
Luke records seven prayers of Jesus Christ which are not mentioned elsewhere.
Luke is literary. He has a remarkably large vocabulary, and uses many different writing styles to fit the situation at hand. His is the best written of the gospels from a literary standpoint. There are 800 words in Luke and Acts which do not occur elsewhere in the New Testament.
Luke is detailed, but not to the point of boring his readers to death. He has a knack for including what is pertinent to the narrative, and leaving behind what is extraneous. Perhaps the powers of observation and diagnosis he developed as a doctor come into play in this regard.
Luke concentrates on the death of Christ. From chapter 9 forward he keeps the thread of Christ's death in the fabric of his narrative.
The Gospel of Luke is generally regarded as a literary masterpiece among New Testament books. Here one finds some of the finest Greek in the New Testament. While the Gospels have much in common, almost a third of the Gospel according to Luke is peculiar to itself, including six miracles, eighteen parables, and a great deal of discourse material.
AUTHOR: The two books attributed to Luke (Luke and Acts) make up about 28% of the Greek New Testament. Luke, the "beloved physician" and the traveling companion of the apostle Paul, is not mentioned by name in either book. The only places where his name occurs in the New Testament are in Colossians 4:14; 2 Timothy 4:11; and Philemon 1:24. Luke also referred to himself directly in the "we" sections of Acts (16:10-17; 20:5-21; 27:1-28:16). Just when he became a Christian is unknown.
Luke seems to have been the only Gentile writer of the New Testament. Paul wrote that, of his fellow-workers, Aristarchus, Mark and John were the only ones who were Jewish. The others (Epaphras, Luke, and Demas) were therefore probably Gentiles. Paul referred to Luke as a physician (Col. 4:14), and evidence from passages in Luke and Acts seem to corroborate this.
BACKGROUND: Luke was a historian who carefully researched his material (Luke 1:1-4). He consulted eyewitnesses for information ( Luke 1:2). He may have gathered certain details, such as facts on Jesus' birth and youth from Mary herself (cf. 2:51). Luke also seemed to have had contacts with the Herodian court (cf. Luke 3:1, 19; 8:3; 9:7-9; 13:31; 23:7-12). All of Luke's writing was done under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
CHARACTERISTICS OF THE BOOK:
Key Verse: Luke 19:10
Key Word: "Son of Man"
The term "Son of man" is used 26 times. It speaks of more than just the Lord's humanity in contrast to His deity, "Son of God." It means He is the perfect, ideal Man, the true representative of the whole human race.
Other characteristics of Luke that set it apart from Matthew and Mark would include:
1. Additional information concerning the virgin birth narrated from Mary's point of view. Luke along tells the story of the visit of the Shepherds. Luke tells how Jesus was subject to Joseph and mary and of his visit to the temple when he was twelve years old.
2. In presenting the manhood of Jesus, we are told that he toiled with his hands, wept over the city, kneeled in prayer, and knew agony and suffering.
3. Luke emphasizes the miracles of healing, he alone tells of healing Malchus' ear.
4. Luke is the gospel for the outcast on earth. He tells of the Good Samaritan; the Publican; the Prodigal Son; of Zacchaeus, and the thief on the cross.
5. Luke has been called the "Gospel of Womanhood," he has much to say and immortalized certain women associated with Jesus in his ministry. He shows Jesus' compassion upon the many women and children.
6. Luke's is the gospel of Jesus praying, and his parables concerning prayer. (Luke 3:21; 5:16; 6:12; 9:28,29; 11:14; 22:31,32; 22:41,42; 23:46.)
7. Luke's gospel has a domestic tone. Jesus is often pictured as being in a home.
8. The gospel is noted for its praise and thanksgiving, a very poetic book.
a. Mary's song, 1:46-55.
b. Song of Zacharias, 1:68-79
c. The Song of the Angels, 2:8-14
9. Luke emphasized the universal message of the gospel more than the other Gospel writers and gives the reader a more comprehensive grasp of the history of the period than the other gospels. He presented more facts about the earthly life of Jesus than did Matthew, Mark, or John.
It is believed that Luke wrote his gospel about the years AD 58-60, while Paul was in prison in Caesarea; and followed it with the book of Acts during Paul's imprisonment in Rome the next two years. The two books are in a sense, two volumes of one work.
The book covers about a 35 year span from the annunciation of the birth of John the Baptist to Zacharias to the ascension of our Lord.
PURPOSE: Luke was able to achieve several accomplishments in writing the book:
1. He was able to present an accurate account of the facts about the life of Christ, and confirm to Theophilus that his faith in Christ rested on firm historical fact (1:3-4).
2. Luke presented Christ as the perfect God-Man, who after a period of perfect ministry provided a perfect salvation for sinful humanity.
3. He presented a universal Christ. The gospel is not anti-Jewish, but it does aim to confirm the faith of Greeks.
4. Others have suggested secondary purposes such as: (a) to give a defense of Christianity; (b) to prepare a brief for use in Paul's trials; (c) to prepare a gospel account for missionary purposes.
THE RECIPIENTS. The book along with Acts of Apostles is addressed to Theophilus (meaning "lover of God" or "loved by God") Luke 1:3. Evidently he was a high official because of the title "most excellent" (compare Acts 23:26; 24:3; 26:25). The Gospel was, of course, meant for more than just his private reading. Luke wrote for a Greek audience.
GENTILE CHARACTER OF THE BOOK
Several lines of evidence point to the conclusion that Luke wrote primarily for Gentiles.
(1) Luke frequently explained Jewish localities (Luke 4:31; 8:26; 21:37; 23:51; 24:13). This would be unnecessary if he were writing primarily for Jews.
(2) Luke traces Jesus's genealogy (Luke 3:23-38) all the way back to Adam (rather than to Abraham, as in Matthew's Gospel). The implication is that Jesus was representing all mankind rather than just the Jewish nation.
(3) Luke referred to Roman emperors in designating the dates of Jesus' birth (Luke 2:1) and of John preaching (Luke 3:1).
(4) Fourth, Luke used a number of words which would be more familiar to Gentile readers than the comparable Jewish terms found in Matthew's Gospel. An example is Luke's use of the Greek "didaskalos" rather than "rabbi" for "teacher".
(5) Luke used the Septuagint when quoting from the Old Testament. He has relatively few direct quotations, though the book is filled with allusions.
(6) Little is said about Jesus' fulfilling prophecies because that theme was not as important to Gentile readers as it was to Jewish readers. Luke has only five direct references to fulfillment of prophecy and all but one (Luke 3:4) are found in the teaching of Jesus to Israel.
ZACCHAEUS: A Man Who Wanted To See Jesus
1. Jesus set his face for Jerusalem -- 9:51
2. The entrance into Jericho -- a beautiful city of importance.
I. THINGS THAT HINDERED
A. His job -- Luke 19:2b he was a chief publican
B. His riches -- Luke 19:2c "and he was rich"
. . 1) Different ways of being rich (I Cor. 4:8)
. . 2) I Tim. 6:17-18; Rev. 2:9
C. The crowd -- Luke 19:3 "he could not for the press"
D. His statue -- v.3 "for he was little of stature"
. . 1) Different way of being little --
. . 2) 1 Sam. 15:17; I Kings 3:7; 2 Kings 5:2; I Cor. 5:6
II. THINGS THAT HELPED
A. His desire -- Luke 19:3a "and he sought to see Jesus"
B. His determination -- Luke 19:4a "and he ran before"
C. His dexterity -- "and climbed up into a sycamore tree"
. . 1) If God made him short, it was God also who made the sycamore three so he could see.
. . 2) Nature -- the tree; Ps. 19:1
III. THINGS THAT HAPPENED
A. The call -- Luke 19:5 Christ called him and he replied
B. The comply -- Luke 19:6 The Lord went home with him.
C. The criticism -- Luke 19:7 the people murmured
D. The conversion --
. . 1) We see repentance and restitution
The Gospel of John
The Author - John
God used a zealot. He was a cousin "according to the flesh" of Jesus Christ. Brother of James (not the epistle writer). A native of Galilee. John's mother Salome was a follower of Jesus, and ministered to Him of her own means.
John was a fisherman of the Sea of Galilee, his life was hard work, but apparently it had paid off for his family, because they had servants, and were able to support the ministry of Jesus Christ. Galilee was a region somewhat analogous to the U.S. South not too long ago. It is conservative to a fault, and more than a little rebellious in character. The fires of rebellion flamed openly in this region. In reality a lot of senseless violence took place in the name of the zealot movement, but there was very little virtue. This time was somewhat analogous to that of Northern Ireland today.
John had great humility. When John the Baptist points out Jesus as the Messiah, John follows without delay. He never mentions own name in own Gospel.
He was nicknamed, with brother James as the "Sons of Thunder", a reference to their manner in Word and Deed, Mk 3:17. It is likely that they had a fair amount of Zealot ideals in their heads.
He was outspoken about his faith from the start. He was "The disciple whom Jesus loved" - was the closest to Jesus of the inner circle of Peter, James, and John.
He was the only eyewitness to the cross among the disciples, and he was eyewitness to the resurrection, Jn 20.
He was one of the "Pillars of the Church", Gal 2:9. Paul had a high regard for him. He took over as chief of Apostles some time in the late 70's.
His writing reflects the 50+ years of careful thought about the life of Christ and the Christian life.
Under his ministry, Ephesus became the center of the pivot which gave the Roman Empire its greatest time of prosperity under the Antonine Caesars, 98-180 AD
He used very basic Greek grammar to express incredibly deep theological ideas.
He was the key figure in the transition from the pre-canon period to the post canon period.
Circumstances of Writing the Gospel.
John wrote about 20 years after the completion of the synoptic gospels.
The synoptic gospels were written during the Neronian persecutions; John's gospel is written in the aftermath. The Neronian persecution set the attitude in the Roman Empire. The average Roman at least publicly viewed Christianity and Christians with disdain.
This unpopularity was worse for Christianity than the original persecution. Peer pressure was more effective in weakening Christianity than capital punishment. Martyrs make good P.R. figures.
At the time of writing, Christianity was much weaker than it had been some twenty years before.
John probably wrote from Ephesus, the place of his later ministry. He had formerly ministered in Jerusalem, but was apparently driven out by Jewish persecution.
John was the last eyewitness to the life of Christ, and he has a desire to retell the story in his own words.
John wrote in a time of transition to the post-canon era of the church age. The temporary spiritual gifts, with all their fantastic abilities, are being left behind.
The Target Audience
If John's Epistles are any indication of the readers of his gospel, he wrote to a crowd that needed to understand the basics of Christianity.
The Christian church had fallen into great disrepair in just twenty years' time. The average Christian did not understand even how to confess his or her sins.
The suffering of the Neronian persecution, and the relentless peer pressure of the pagan Roman citizens had led many believers to seek alternate philosophies which bore the name of Christianity, but which were anything but.
John has an very tough uphill battle to fight with regard to heresy and the truth. The situation was not unlike what we encounter in our nation today.
The Purpose of the Gospel
In John 20:30-31, John communicates his purpose: "Many other signs therefore did Jesus in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book: but these are written, that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in his name."
John wants his readers to believe if they are unbelievers, and to grow to maturity if they are believers.
In order to do so, he attempts to establish Jesus as the Son of God and the Messiah (Christ), and re-establish the Word of God as the authority and the Truth.
The Characteristics of the Gospel.
The gospel is very simple in the use of the Greek language and writing style.
John writes about some extremely profound concepts, and he uses many symbols to do so.
John records at least six miracles which are recorded nowhere else in the gospels. He always designates these as signs.
John's gospel concentrates on events which are not recorded elsewhere. He records Christ's early Galilean ministry, and his upper room discourse.
John concentrates on the words of Christ Himself.
John develops in a fair amount of detail the relationship between the Father and the Son.
John's gospel is like a commentary - he inserts his comments on the narrative many times - interpreting and illuminating the events as they occur.
Gospel of John
The book of John is unique among the Gospels. There
is no mention of the birth and early years of Jesus. A
great amount of attention is focused on Jesus' final
instructions to the apostles.
Most of the events related in John are found nowhere
else in Scripture--the first miracle at Cana, the first
cleansing of the temple, Nicodemus' visit with the Lord,
Lazarus' resurrection, etc.
Author: The book refers to its author calling himself
"the disciple whom Jesus loved...who has written these
things," John 21:20, 24. The writer obviously was a
Palestinian Jew who was an eyewitness of the events of
Christ's life, for he displays knowledge of Jewish
customs (7:37-39; 18:28) and of the land of Palestine
(1:44, 46; 5:2) and he includes details of an eyewitness
(2:6; 13:26; 21:8, 11). Both internal and external
evidences point to the apostle John the son of Zebedee
and Salome as the author. It appears that John preached
in the area of Ephesus in the middle of the first century
and that the gospel was written about that time before
the destruction of the city in AD 70, ["Now there is at
Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, which is called in
the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches." John
Purpose of the Book: The Gospel of John has clearly an
evangelistic purpose, presenting Jesus and calling upon
men to make a decision about him (John 20:31). The book
opens with an affirmation that eternal life is to be
found in Christ (John 1:4). While Matthew was written
primarily for the Jewish audience, and Mark and Luke for
the Roman and Greek, John appears to have been aimed at
a universal audience.
1. One of the unique themes of John's Gospel is the
opening doctrine of the Word (Greek, ho logos), John 1:1-18.
The Jew understood that ho logos created the world
(Gen.1:3), gave life (Isa.55:3) and accomplished the
divine purpose in all things (Isa.55:11). The Greeks
perceived ho logos as giving the universe order and
harmony (e.g., Heraclitus) and serving to direct mankind
to ultimate realities.
John presents Jesus as the divine logos who has
come in the flesh. To the Jew, this meant that God's
power, plans, and promises were contained in Jesus. To
the Greek, it suggested that the one who created and gave
order to the universe, who sustained it in an orderly
fashion had come in the flesh to dwell among men.
2. In John's gospel the evidential nature of
miracles as signs is most prominent. A miracle is "an
extraordinary work of God in the world which serves as a
sign or attestation." We often hear the word used
loosely and incorrectly. A miracle (dunamis) is a mighty
work or exhibition of extraordinary power. John uses the
idea of Jesus' miracles being 'signs' (semeion) a
distinguishing mark or seal of genuineness, (John 2:23;
3:2; 4:54; 6:2, 14).
Miracles in the Bible served the purpose to
accredit a man as being from God (e.g, Moses before
Pharaoh, etc.) In Jesus' case his miracles confirmed
that he was from God (5:35; 3:1-2) and identified him as
the Messiah (7:31), and gained the attention of the
people and showed God's compassion for the plight of
It is impossible to remove miracles from the
life and record of Jesus Christ. If one rejects the
miracles (including the virgin birth and Jesus'
resurrection) he has no grounds for accepting the
philosophy and truthfulness of Jesus.
On the other hand there are obvious contrasts
between Jesus' miracles and the alleged miracles of
today's "faith healers." Jesus worked miracles in the
absence of faith, he worked a variety of miracles,
including control over nature, multiplying food, raising
the dead, and were never done for selfish gain.
3. Jesus speaks of the "new birth" in John 3:1-21
and expresses that a man must be born again, or from
above, to enter into the kingdom of heaven. This new
birth involves water and the spirit. The association of
"water" with the process of man beginning life anew would
immediately be identified with baptism in the mind of
Nicodemus and those in that time. As seen in the context
of this passage John was baptizing multitudes and this
was for the forgiveness of sins (John 1:15-34; 3:22-28;
Baptism is consistently paralleled with one
beginning a new life in Christ (cf. Romans 6:3-6; 1 Peter
3:21). It pictures the putting to death of the man of
sin and his burial, his cleansing by the blood of Christ
(Rev. 1:5), and his resurrection from the grave of water
to a new life (Rom. 6:4-6).
John's Plan in the Gospel: The thesis of John's record
is that Jesus was God in the flesh. The principle part
of the book provides supporting evidence of this thesis.
John presents seven great signs (or miracles) that serve
to credential Jesus as the Son of God. Nicodemus
said something about the power of these miracles when he
said in John 3:2 _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
1st sign (2:1-11) _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
2nd sign (4:46-54) _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
3rd sign (5:1-18) _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
4th sign (6:1-14) _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
5th sign (6:15-21) _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
6th sign (9:1-41) _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
7th sign (11:1-57) _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
John presents seven witness who give their testimony
to Jesus as the Son of God. Who were these witnesses
and what did they say, (1) John 1:34 (1:19-36); (2) John
1:49 (43-51); (3) John 6:69 (66-69); (4) John 11:27;
(5) John 20:28; (6) John 20:31; (7) John 10:36 (31-47).
John presents the seven great "I AM" statements of
the Lord himself and his own claims. (1) 6:35; (2)
8:12; (3) 8:58; (4) 10:11; (5) 11:25; (6) 14:6; (7)
And John presents clearly his own purpose for
writing these things, "And many other signs truly did
Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not
written in this book: But these are written, that ye
might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God;
and that believing ye might have life through his name."
Overview of John:
I. Incarnation of the Son of God, 1:1-18
II. Presentation of the Son of God, 1:19 - 4:54
III. Confrontations with the Son of God, 5:1-12:50
A. At a feast in Jerusalem, 5:1-47
B. At passover time in Galilee, 6:1-71
C. At f east of tabernacles, 7:1-10:21
D. At feast of dedication, 10:22-42
E. At Bethany, 11:1-12:11
F. At Jerusalem, 12:12-50
IV. Instructions by the Son of God, 13:1 - 16:33
V. Intercession of the Son of God, 17:1-26
VI. Crucifixion of the Son of God, 18:1 - 19:42
VII. Resurrection of the Son of God, 20:1 - 21:25
A. The empty tomb, 20:1-20
B. His appearances afterwards 20:11-21:25
SERMON - - - - - - -
A Service With Jesus
John 20:19-23 (Luke 24)
1. What first Lord's Day service do you remember?
Here is one that stands out in John's mind.
2. Notice the week the disciples had come through.
3. Look at the condition of their spirit when they met.
4. Jesus met with them on that great day, and let's
notice three things that happened in that assembly:
I. THEY WERE COMFORTED
A. By What Was Not Said.
Jesus did not shame and criticize them.
B. By What Was Said.
Jesus greeted them with 'Shalom' or "Peace,"
and really wanted them to have the peace He
could give them (v.19, v.21).
II. THEY WERE CONVINCED
When the Lord appears they were terrified and how
does He convince them? What evidence? (Luke 24:37, 38-39)
A. The Scars -- Luke 24:39
B. The Scriptures -- Lk.24:44-46; Isa. 53; Psa.22
III. THEY WERE CHALLENGED
John 19:21-23 is John's record of the commission.
They had been challenged before (Matt. 10) but now it is
broader and greater. How would they respond?
A. This Would Be An Exalted Privilege
1. They would be ambassadors. Credentials.
2. They would go in the name of Christ.
3. They had a message for every man -- that every
man needed to hear -- (2 Cor.4:4-5; 1Tim.1:11-12)
B. It Would Be Extremely Personal
Even as I send "you," that means Peter, James, etc.
1. Can we imagine the...
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