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The Gentiles Are In!

Paul wrote Romans Chapter 10 to explain further Jewish rejection and Gentile acceptance of the Gospel. How could the historic people of God, the Jews, largely reject the Gospel while those who were formerly excluded from the nation, the Gentiles, accept it and now have a spiritual standing equal with the Jews? Paul explained in Chapter 9 that there was an ‘Israel within Israel’ (“they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel,” 9:6) – that God never intended to save all ethic Jews but only those whom He had predestined (9:18, 27). Paul also quoted the prophet Hosea…

The Great Confession

Matthew 28:18-20 is the Great Commission. The Church is to go to all the nations, making them disciples by “baptizing them in the Name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit” and “teaching them to observe all that I [Christ] commanded” (Matthew 28:19-20). However, before you can make disciples, you must be one yourself. You must be saved before you can go out and preach so that God can save others. Before a Christian can go and fulfill the Great Commission, he must make the Great Confession of salvation, which Paul gives in Romans 10:9: “If you…

The Harvest of Bitter Berries

Christ loved to quote the Hebrew Scriptures. He often used Old Testament passages to identify Himself. When John the Baptist began to doubt Jesus’ Messiahship because he was in prison, he sent disciples to ask, “Are You the expect One, or shall we look for someone else?” (Matthew 11:3). Jesus answered by quoting Isaiah: “Go and report to John what you hear and see: ‘the blind receive sight and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up and the poor have the Gospel preached to them’” (Matthew 11:4-6; Isaiah 35:5-6; Isaiah…

Tragic Jewish Pride

Paul wrote Romans chapters 9-11 to defend the Gospel by explaining the historic and current state of Jewish unbelief. During Paul’s time, most Jews were outside the church. Some had repented, but most had not. People had this question: if the Jews were the historic people of God, why were they rejecting the Gospel? Perhaps the Gospel was wrong! Paul explained that God never intended to save every ethnic Jew. There was a ‘spiritual Israel within outward Israel’ that God chose for salvation. Paul stated: “For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel” (9:6). Paul also quotes…

Much Zeal - No Christ

During Paul’s time, the Jews as a nation were outside the church. Some had come in, but most were outside. People had this question: if the Jews were the historic people of God, and had received the Old Testament Scriptures, why were they rejecting the Gospel? Was the Gospel false? If not, then why were the Jews outside? Had God’s promises to the Jewish nation failed? Had God failed them? If God’s promises to the Jews had failed, then who could trust Paul’s Gospel? The state of the Jews seemed to militate against Paul’s statement closing Chapter 8 that nothing…

The Gospel Foundation

The Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5:3-7:27, Jesus’ first recorded sermon in the New Testament, ends with solemn warnings of judgment. These statements include “Beware of false prophets” (7:15), “the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction” (7:13) and: “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness (7:23).” The Sermon ends with an emphasis on obedience to the Word of God. Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘LORD, LORD’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven; but he who does the will of My Father Who is in heaven” (7:21). Also,…

The Narrowness of Christ

The Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5:1-7:27, Jesus’ first recorded sermon in the New Testament, presents the Christian life as narrow. It is hard to find (7:14), those who find it are few (7:14) and after a narrow entrance, the way does not get wider or easier. This path is in direct contrast to another path that the rest of humanity travels. This other path is easy to find: multitudes are flocking to it. Entrance into the gate is easy (7:13): there are no qualifications to enter – many have done so. Once on it, the way is wide and…

Rightful Judgment

Jesus, while being the Master of speech also is the Master of the human soul. No one else knows us so thoroughly as Jesus does; and so, no other sermon is so searching as the one that He has preached. As Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones has said, this Sermon “finds us all somehow, somewhere. There is no possibility of escape; it searches us out in all our hiding-places and brings us out into the light of God.” Matthew 7:1-6 is one of the most provocative sections in the whole Bible. In this text, Jesus tests his followers with the phrase, “Do…

Why Are You Worried?

In the Sermon on the Mount our Lord again and again sets before us God’s standard of righteousness for those who desire to and belong to His kingdom. Inevitably the issue always comes down to what we are in our hearts. In ch. 6:25-34 Jesus addresses our view of daily necessities for our life. He knows that despite seeming unimportance of this subject what’s at stake is our worship of God (vs.24) and our spiritual fruitfulness (Lk 8:11-14). To liberate us from this sinful bondage of anxiety Jesus, first points directly at the root of the problem, which is lack…

Choosing Your Audience

The Sermon on the Mount is not only the best sermon written on the pages of Scripture but also perhaps the most uncomfortable to swallow. In this sermon Jesus addresses the heart of men and their motives, exposing their sins from every direction. In Matthew 6 Jesus continues his sermon with a warning of danger in practicing righteousness before men to be noticed by them (6:1). Hypocrite is a term that describes a person who pretends to be something he or she is not. During the days of Jesus there were Scribes, Pharisees and other religious men who were highly…

Divine Assessment: Murderer at Heart!

In Matthew 5:21-48, Christ goes on to further explain what He said in vs.17 of the same chapter, “I did not come to abolish (the law) but to fulfill.” In this section, Christ deals with 3 of 10 commandments, and explains the true intent of the Law. A right understanding of the doctrines these verses contain lies at the very root of Christianity and our faith! In a very bold and authoritative way, Christ confronted the interpretation and the application of the Law of Moses held and taught by the scribes and Pharisees. On the surface, it might seem as…

Not to Abolish But to Fulfill

The gospel of Matthew is about a King and His kingdom. Matthew begins with the genealogy of Jesus in order to establish His royal descent. At His birth, Magi from the east arrived to worship Him as a king (Matt. 2:1-12). John the Baptist, the forerunner of Jesus, at the onset of his ministry announced the coming of the long-awaited kingdom (Matt. 3:2). Jesus Himself, in His first public statement, echoed the words of John-“Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matt. 4:17). He traveled throughout all Galilee “proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom” (Matt. 4:23). In Matthew…