Matthew (4.1-11) records that Satan used three temptations: the temptation to turn stones into bread, the temptation to test God by jumping from the temple, and the temptation to escape the cross by falling down and worshiping Satan. Each of these temptations is related to what Jesus had heard from heaven at his baptism, namely, that he was God’s “Son” with whom God the Father was “well pleased.” Continue reading ““Satan’s Three Temptations””
Who is Jesus Christ?
We should have a fairly complete answer to that question by now, because we have been given several clear answers to it in the first three chapters of Matthew. Continue reading ““Jesus and the Devil””
In addition to John the Baptist’s message of repentance, the second most important thing about the work given to him was his practice of baptizing people as a sign that they had done what he demanded. They had repented of their sins and were looking forward to the coming Messiah. Continue reading ““The Baptism of John””
John the Baptist’s message contained three parts, according to Matthew (3.1-17): (1) a warning, (2) a promise, and (3) a demand. Continue reading ““Repent; The Kingdom of Heaven is At Hand””
Some thirty years passed between chapters 2 and 3 of Matthew, during which Jesus lived in Nazareth and worked as a carpenter. But the time came for Him to begin His public ministry which would culminate at the cross. For over 400 years, the nation had not heard the voice of a prophet. Then John appeared and a great revival took place. Continue reading ““A Voice in the Desert””
How should we handle this verse? First, we should note that Matthew introduces the verse by referring to prophets (plural, “through the prophets”), rather than saying, as he does in other instances, “This took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet” (Matt. 1:22) or “For this is what the prophet has written” (Matt. 2:5). This seems to indicate a general rather than specific Old Testament reference. Continue reading ““Be Wise and Be Warned OR The Nations Rage””