Gospel of Matthew
Jim Deering - The Ancient Path
The Book of MATTHEW
Matthew: The Kingdoms of God - condensed.
Part-1 opened with the Genealogy of Jesus. The two genealogies of Matthew 1 and Luke 3 introduce us to the RIGHTS of Jesus as to being a bonafide Jew - all the way back to Adam and the right to be KING as a direct descendant of the Kings of Israel (David through Zedekiah) and continuing as the rightful descendant of David.
Part-2 concerns the miraculous foretelling of Jesus' birth.
Chapter 2 deals largely with the Nativity story, the escape to Egypt from Herod, and the return to Nazareth, all that we know about Jesus youth.
We've filled in many of the blanks that Matthew leaves us with scripture from Mark, Luke, and John.
Chapter 3 introduces us to John the Baptist, Jesus' cousin who is 6 mo. older than Jesus who was called to be the forerunner of the Messiah (Christ). The Messiah has come down to earth and John The Baptist provides the announcement of the event. His ministry is to cry-out the message from God, "Make ready the way of the Lord, Make His paths straight." John the Baptist's message is "Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."
To understand John's command we must consider the program, or plan, of God and His "Kingdom."
There are two parts to God's Kingdom.
God's Kingdom - Part 1
The first part concerns the everlasting Kingdom of which God Himself is King. His everlasting Kingdom is fully eternal. It has no beginning nor an end. It exists because God is the self existent one and He is eternal in nature. He is eternal, therefore His domain (or Kingdom) is also eternal.
God's Kingdom - Part 2
The second part concerns "the Kingdom" which God expresses over affairs of the earth. The rule of thumb concerning this kingdom is that where the King is - there is His kingdom.
Back in Eternity Past (to us) God desired to have fellowship and out of that desire He created the "cosmos," or everything that we know as part of creation. God (the tri-unity of the revealed three persons involved in the "God head") determined that "The Son of God" (the second person in that tri-unity) would be the "Creator" and "Sustainer" of all that would be made. God, the King, would be The Son of God in our created universe.
Because the "creation" would be inferior to God, He had to develop a plan that would "forgive" that inferiority in order to have fellowship with it.
God's first fellowship creation would be to that set of creatures we normally call angels. These creatures were created to be in God's presence to call out to all of creation the attributes of His awesomeness. Because of their high calling they were to minister in the very presence of God. No allowance would be made - with such a high calling - for disobedience. To dwell in the very presence of God they would have to be eternally perfect (having hearts only for God), but many were not. Their disobedience caused them to be "cast down" and their eternal destination would be "the lake of fire." Twice as many as those who fell remain Holy (dedicated) to God. They are a real part of both aspects of "The Kingdom of God."
God's second fellowship creation would be assembled in such a manner that through various age-long tests, members of this creation would voluntarily choose to love God the creator (Son of God), and the entire God-head (Father and Holy Spirit). God the King (Son of God) would voluntarily do what was necessary for this imperfect creation so that their imperfection was not an impediment and the only qualification necessary would be to voluntarily love Him for doing it. Those who chose to Love Him would gain, like the Holy angels, a place in eternity in the very presence of Almighty God. Those who would chose to disregard the offer - for whatever reason - would find themselves with the fallen angels in the lake of fire.
And so, the Kingdom of God - in our creation - has to do with The King, and where the King is at any given point in time.
A quick outline of "The Kingdom of God on Earth"
God and His relationship with Individuals - Pre Sinai: The God of Creation (The Son) in an immediate relationship with man.
Creation through Adam and Eve - Kingdom of God on earth (Theocracy) and man (inferior but innocent but)
Fallen Adam and Eve through Noah (Pre-flood) - Kingdom on Earth (Theocracy) and fallen man
Noah (flood) through Babel - Kingdom on Earth (Theocracy) and fallen man after a new beginning.
Post Babel - Abram in Ur - Kingdom on Earth (Theocracy) and fallen and divided man.
Abram to Moses - Kingdom on Earth (Theocracy) and fallen and chosen people (Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and descendants). God Promises Abraham the "Promised Earthly Kingdom of God."
Sinai (Moses, Aaron, and The Law) through 1 Samuel 8:7 - Kingdom on Earth (Theocracy) and fallen and chosen people (Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and descendants) in an immediate relationship with mankind with God DWELLING among His chosen people in the Tabernacle.
1 Samuel / Ezekiel 10-11 through Matthew Chapter 1 - King and Kingdom removed to heavenlies. God's chosen people reject God and He has removed Himself from them, and gone back to heaven; "The Glory has Departed." The chosen people continue their rebellion and disobedience to God and as a result are sent into the captivity of the Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, and Romans.
The Kingdom in the Gospels
Matthew 1:1 - 11:1 The King (Son of God) returns to earth, in human form, and His Kingdom (because of the prophesied rejection of the Kingdom) is "at hand" awaiting the answer to Jesus the King's Offering of the establishment of the "Promised Earthly Kingdom" to the Jews, His chosen people.
Matthew 11:2 - 12:45 The Jews Reject the Promised Kingdom and
Jesus Rejects the Jews as His tool for the evangelization of the world - for rejecting Him - Israel is "set aside." Therefore:
Matthew 12:46 - 28:20 The Promised Kingdom is Postponed
Luke 20:51 The King Ascends back to the Heavenlies and His offer of the Kingdom goes with Him (where the king is - is where the kingdom is).
The Spiritual Kingdom of God is established among His believing People.
Acts Chapter 2 The Advocate of Christ, the Holy Spirit of God, comes to earth to INDWELL those who "Love God with all their heart and with all their Soul" through belief in the Savior, Jesus, The Christ (Messiah).
We are now awaiting The King's return for His Church (believing people) and the Day of The Lord. First, the Wrath of God expressed upon the Nation of Israel (and the world) for the disobedience of unbelief, and then the Second Coming of Jesus Christ establishing His promised earthly millennial Kingdom among the believing Nation of Israel - the last step on earth before the Judgment of all and the return to God's Eternal program.
Matthew Chapter 3 Starting with Verse 7 introduced us to the leadership (Pharisees and Sadducees) who are responsible for evaluating the claims of Jesus as to His rights to be Messiah/Christ - King of the Jews.
Matthew Chapter 4 will cover:
The Temptations 4,1-11
Jesus and His Public Ministry, 4:12
Jesus and His early ministry to The Land of the Gentiles, 4:13-16
Jesus and the Nation of Israel, 4:17
Jesus and the first disciples, 4:18-22
Jesus and His preaching and healing, 4:23-25
Also - please see:
Addendum 010, Jesus Miracle at Cana
Addendum 011, The Seraphim and Cherubim
Addendum 012, The Miracles of Jesus