The Gospel of Matthew
"Jesus Christ: Behold Thy King"
  (Zechariah 9:9)

J. Deering,

The Book of MATTHEW


Matthew - The King, and His Rejection


1. J. Deering's Commentary on the Introduction

2. J. Deering's Comments on using the dispensational method

3.  Hendricksen's Characteristics of Matthew

4.  Hendricksen's Information on the Book of Matthew

5. Mason's Introduction to Matthew

6. Mason's Synopsis of The Gospel of Matthew

7. Mason's New Testament Chronology

8. Karleen's Outline of Matthew

9. Ryrie's Introduction to The Gospel According to Matthew

10. Ryrie's Outline of The Gospel of Matthew

11. Gaebelein's Introduction to Matthew

12. Gaebelein's Notes on Matthew

13. Ladd's Matthew

14. G. Campbell Morgan's Matthew - Jesus Christ the King

15. C.I. Scofield's Matthew (from his correspondence series)
16. Note concerning the prophecies that Jesus the Christ fulfilled


The Book of MATTHEW


J. Deering,


"The gospel of Matthew stands first among the Gospels and in the New Testament because it was placed first in the list of books there and may be termed the Genesis of the New Testament. Genesis, the first book of the Bible, contains in itself the entire Bible, and so it is with the first Gospel; it is the book of the beginnings of a new dispensation. It is like a mighty tree. Its roots are deeply sunk in massive rocks while its uncountable branches and twigs extend upward higher and higher in perfect symmetry and beauty. The foundation is the Old Testament with its Messianic and Kingdom promises. Out of this all is developed in perfect harmony, reaching higher and higher into the new dispensation and to the beginning of the millennial age."[1]

We start this book study with Arno C. Gaebelein's words. They should point us in the right direction for the study of this wonderful, and lengthy, book. Our aim will be to keep ever before us the whole plan of God - from before the creation to the end of time where eternity is ushered in. The book of Matthew is chock-full of Bible knowledge and it is unfortunate that Christendom has largely chosen to ignore the eternal purposes of God through self-centered interpretation. The Gospel of Jesus Christ reaches backwards to pre-Hebrew time and reaches forward, through the Christian era, through the fulfillment of Hebrew prophecy, and on into eternity.


This study will use biblical dispensationalism in its right understanding, that of it being a Bible study tool. That will lead us into the knowledge of who, what, where and when of the book. It will be important to see each new piece of the knowledge puzzle fit into place - not only in the dispensational era of its interpretation, but also in the whole plan of God in its application. [2]


Matthew - The King, and His Rejection



The New Testament begins with this the first of the gospels. In order to properly understand the book of Matthew's place in the plan of God we must first see where it has been placed in the flow of the total scriptures.


The book of Genesis has been set by the Holy Spirit of God as the first book of the Scriptures. It is there that we are told of the beginnings. In this beginning there is God - already present, having been present since eternity past. He is the great "I AM." We are then led through His creation of all that we know as physical. We are told of the order and the timing. We are told of the first man and woman and their disregard for God as they set their own understanding and reasoning as having more authority than their creator. We call this first human event "The Fall."


The book moves on and tells us of many events that have great meaning, but must be skipped over in this study. We pick up our thread with the call of Abram. God chooses Abram and when the time is right Abram chooses God above all things, even to the asked for, but substituted blood sacrifice of his son Isaac. Abram, now Abraham, and his son willingly go to that altar of blood sacrifice because their God asked it of them. The sacrifice of Isaac is replaced, by God, with the blood sacrifice of a ram - which God provides for that purpose.


This pattern has been seen before in Genesis. It is here that we should see clearly this pattern, man who is destined to willingly pay the great sacrifice for his sin and sins through death who is replaced by the blood sacrifice of God's own Son. Here the Gospel story is told in all it's glory, that a man or woman can be "saved" from death and destruction, through the willing belief upon the Savior - God's own Son, Jesus. Upon this faith one receives forgiveness of sin, reconciliation with God, and the promise of eternal life in the presence of Jesus the Christ.


Genesis again moves on to describe the founding of a Nation of Israel, a people chosen out of the grace of God to be exclusively His. Through Abraham and Isaac, Jacob and his twelve sons comes the twelve Tribes of Israel, God's beloved people.


The next thirty-eight books of the Old Testament make up the story of the belief, unbelief, idolatry, oppression, repentance, and restoration cycles of the People of God.


Within these revelations we also find the foretelling of the first appearance of the Savior/Messiah. We hear of His purpose and His person, and we hear of His being "cut off."


We also hear of the sequence of the Plan of God. We hear of the Savior, and "The Day of The Lord" when Israel will be purged of unbelief - leaving behind only those who are faithful and true to their Heavenly Father - who will enter into His Earthly Kingdom.


The Old testament ends with the book of Malachi which describes God's great compassion for the Nation of Israel and its dreadful faithless moral condition. Malachi closes the book with warnings of the coming judgment which will not take place until the advent of the Messiah.


The book of Matthew is also full of beginnings. There is the genealogy of Jesus. There is the coming of the "Forerunner," John the Baptist. There is the pregnancy of Mary and the Birth of Jesus the Messiah/Christ. There is the beginning of His adult ministry, there is the calling of the first disciples.


Then there is the telling of all the evidence - all the prophecy that His life and miracles fulfill. The book takes us to His humiliation, suffering and death upon the Cross at Golgotha. "It is finished" He yells out as His suffering and death complete His purpose in coming - The forgiveness of sin to those who would believe.


Matthew gives us the full evidence that God was pleased with His Son (in all things, without sin, and with His absolute dependence upon the Will of His Father, and the justification of all who would believe.) the Resurrection.



Throughout the Old Testament, and on into the Gospels, God reveals that there are specific groups of people involved.


The "nations," (pre-Abraham, Isaac, Jacob). This is the whole world of mankind. It can then be divided into "men and women of God," and "men and women not of God."


The Hebrew nation, (God's covenant places this group as those born into one of the twelve tribes of the children of Jacob). These people are the beneficiaries of a covenant, made by God, stating that they would be specifically His for all eternity.


The 'nations", (those members of all nations that are not The Hebrew nation). These people are all those outside the covenant made by God for the Hebrew people.


In the Old testament there are believers and un-believers spread throughout all categories of people, including the Hebrew covenant nation. The covenant holds the Hebrew people as uniquely belonging to God, but does not provide a guarantee of "Salvation."


In the Old and New Testaments the salvation of God is dependant upon His grace. Each individual is faced with the evidence of God and the necessity of their personal faith in Him as God.


Also in this great plan is the promises that result in the definitions of who Messiah would be, where He would be born, and other specifics of His life and death - including the timing (not specific dates and times) of these events.


There are also promises that have to do with persecution, wrath, and blessing of the Nation of Israel in our future. Those prophecies of the Old Testament are carried on into the Gospels. It will be helpful for the student to visualize the Gospels as, largely, an extension of the Old Testament as they deal, largely, with the Nation of Israel. Matthew, Mark, and Luke deal with Israel until The Savior is Resurrected, and then all four Gospels head into the age of "the Church." The book of Acts records the transition from Israel to The Church in the Plan of God.


However, God is not finished with Israel post-resurrection. At the end of the church age the church will be removed to Heaven with her Savior and God will return to His program for Israel with Daniel's Seventieth Week (see Daniel Ch-9).


That part of God's plan is call "The Day of the Lord," which includes the Wrath of the Tribulation and the Blessing of the Millennium, followed by final Judgment and the Eternal State with Israel, not the Church as the biblical focus of that time of future history.


"Comments on using the dispensational method of studying the Book of Matthew"



If we are conscious at all we are aware that all of time falls into eras or periods of time that define events and purposes. In the wide sense the Bible also divides up into eras. Even a brief understanding of it would bring us to the conclusion that before Creation God declares that He existed. We would also recognize that there has been a past to look back upon, a now which we are constantly in the middle of, and a future (at least by past experience). This would be a very simple example of how our understanding of our world works, Past - Now - Future.


In our regular understanding of everyday life we would also find convenient and recognizable points in our "now," and our "past," and points along our "hopes and expectations" of the future. There would be some knowledge of early life, increasing knowledge as we grew older (birthdays - themselves a marking of time, grade school, middle and high school, further education for some, various love interests, for the believer there would be the "moment" of salvation in-Christ, jobs, marriage, children, the events of their lives, retirement, our older years. We will all probably experience death. Around us there have been, and continue to be, world events which mark time along with our personal event.


Dividing-up the Bible into time and event groupings is called Dispensationalism. The word comes from naming these divisions of time and events "dispensations."  This specific word implies that with each time/event division there are differences in those things which define its events and purposes and in each different time/event division there would be an overriding "administration," or guiding rules that go specifically with that time/event period.


Here is an example from our present day: We, as Americans, have just ended the first dispensation (first administration) of President Barack Obama. This was an historical event with a real beginning and a real end. Along with this historical event there was a change in government. Some laws went out of use, and some laws came into use with this change in government. There were many things that differed in this period of time from any other in history. It is important to also see that this "change in administration" is a part of a much longer story. In the history of the United States this longer "presidential" story began with George Washington and has continued through 44 presidents; some good, some not so good. Each of these presidencies were marked by their "economies;" how good or how bad. So now we can speak of each presidency as a "dispensation," "administration," and "economy."


Now we can make the transition to some examples of the Biblical dispensation, administration, or economy. Many biblical scholars see the Bible as easily divided up into seven dispensations. The number of divisions has to do with what you are studying and there is no limit on how finely you wish to divide up time. However, for general understanding of the whole of the Word of God - seven individual dispensations are pretty common.


If we were to divide up the Bible in order to discern certain truths concerning when those scriptures were written, we could use the number 2, and see that the Bible is easily divided up into "The Old Testament," and "The New Testament."


If we were to divide up the Bible in order to discern certain truths concerning the Nation of Israel in the areas of sacrifice and the meaning of sacrifice we could again use the number 2 and see that the Bible is easily divided up into "The Old Covenant," made with the blood of animals, and "The New Covenant," made with the Blood of Christ.


If we were to divide up the Bible in order to discern the certain tests that prove man's failure in relation to God's grace and glory, and since most Biblical scholars divide up the Bible into Seven individual dispensations for this purpose... let's see what those are.



The First division takes us from the creation of man through the Fall (including man being driven out of Eden). Man is given the responsibility of determining who will be God in his life. The specific test is that of obedience to God versus self-determination. Man chooses (representational for mankind) self-determination, thus he fails this first test. Man moves from the close, absolute fellowship with God to being cast from His immediate presence.



The Second division takes us from the expulsion from the Garden of Eden to the resulting wrath of God in the Universal Flood. Man is given the responsibility of living according to "Obedience to the Conscience," within the constraints of his self chosen self rule. With a godless conscience man chooses to ignore The One Almighty God and chooses, once again, self rule - which leads to his total debasement (choosing not-God in every decision), thus he fails this second test. With a near-totally ruined mankind God removes all but one family from the face of the earth - in order to be able to start the next division free from the sin and corruption of this one.



The Third division takes us from this new "clean slate" earth to the events at Babel. Man is given the responsibility to be self-governing. The test is to see if man will set up governments that are based upon the precepts of Almighty God - which would lead to kingdoms of righteousness upon the earth. Man fails this test and chooses tyranny and self indulgent dictatorship where money and power decide government. The end result is that mankind, under the leadership of this government system, chooses to become gods themselves and demonstrate to the heavens that man has the right to be god and dwell in those heavens himself. God's response that brings an end to this dispensation is to divide mankind up and send them away from a central government by changing their language to many languages. Everything changes with this one event - man can no longer communicate with each other.



The Fourth division takes us from the "clean slate," where verbal and/or written communication has been ended to Egypt and the bondage there of a people called-out from among all other nations. We must follow the man named Abraham (Abram early in the story) to understand the promise. God's purpose is to call-out a people that God would have as His own - forever. They would be called-out and set aside for this purpose for all of time. The giving of this promise (sealed in a covenant) comes as a result of a test of faith given to Abraham. Abraham was asked to shed the blood of his own son in order to be obedient to Almighty God. Abraham passes his personal test of faith and all but slays his son upon an altar to God, but at the last moment - when there is no doubt in either Abraham or God's mind concerning Abraham's intentions - God stops him and offers the blood of an animal to take the place of the blood of Abraham's son. God's pleasure in Abraham's faith is based upon the promised blood sacrifice of God's own son, the Messiah, Jesus the Christ many centuries later.


That's Abraham's story, but we must continue with the overall test of mankind (apart from Abraham and Isaac - who went willingly to the altar of sacrifice). Abraham's faith and obedience provide the linchpin upon which this called-out and chosen nation of people will be generated. The test will be... will this chosen, called-out nation be faithful to God? Each family head was given specific responsibilities by God and each failed. As a result the Nation of Israel who went to dinner in Egypt and wound up staying there for 430 years - in slavery.


5 - LAW

The fifth division takes us from the Hebrew "great escape" from Egypt to the arrival of the long promised Messiah, Jesus the Christ. Man is given the responsibility of following God's recorded and written down Law. Man is given the knowledge of sacrifices and offerings in order to free him from the unintentional breaking of these laws. He is also blessed with the very presence of Almighty God, first in the wilderness tabernacle and then in the various temples. At every step man fails these requirements and turns to idol worship. God offers Himself to them and they continually turn away. Eventually they become so foul that God allows Assyria and Babylon to take His people into captivity and slavery until God begins the process of the preparation of the coming of His unique, only begotten son.



The sixth division takes us from the beginnings of the New Testament on through the removal of His Church (the true Body of Christ) and the removal of His Holy Spirit from the face of the earth (referred to as The Rapture). During this test man will be given the reality of the Savior. The age begins with the human birth of the forerunner (John the Baptist) and the birth of Jesus, the Son of God in a Human body. First the Nation of Israel will be tested as to her reception of her messiah - she fails that task. As a result the Nation of Israel is set aside in the program of God until the Church is removed. Then each man/woman/child is given the responsibility of self determination to take God's Son as personal savior or reject Him. During this test the Holy Spirit will slowly cease to use the Church as an agent to prevent evil and godless corruption. Over the scores of years mankind continues to become more separate from God and more self-involved. The Savior is known - by both Jew and Gentile alike and God continues to call many to be people of faith.


7 - The Day of the Lord

The seventh division picks up where the fifth left off. History once again becomes Israel focused. The church has finished its course and is now gone. God reveals that this period will start with a brief time of terrible wrath where all faithless (Christ non-believing) is terminated on the face of the earth. That is followed by a one thousand year period of time that is ushered in by the physical return of Jesus Christ (the 2nd Coming). With Him will come all those who have believed in the past. Their mission will be the testimony to the Glory of God. As in past divisions mankind will gradually move away from God and His promises. When the end comes it comes instantly and God is done with His plans and testing of humankind. The great throne judgment occurs and all of humanity is divided up into those who believed, and those who did not. Eternal destinations are implemented and the end of prophesied time ushers both categories of mankind into either a Christ filled, God centered eternity, or a place where God is not, a place of eternal punishment, wrath, and burning.


Well, there you have seven dispensations that show this way of seeing the plan of God. Using a plan like this will greatly help you in your study of the Scriptures. It places people and events into understandable groups. The flow of time in the scriptures can be seen and a sense of God's will for time and space comes easily to the student.



It is always good to see and judge for ourselves the workability of any system or plan for understanding God's revelation to us.


Dispensational thinking is often misunderstood as a kind of theology or even some kind of a cult. Dispensationalism is a workable, understandable, and practical method of study - whether it is the Bible or historical literature of any kind. It is a sensible and accurate way to judge time and responsibilities.


However, and there should always be "however," many misunderstand the very nature of time and events. Back when we were discussing the example of presidencies we should note that President Lincoln made speeches concerning laws and social ills that were specific to Lincoln's time. We would understand that when reading his words today. We would understand that certain principles are universal, while statements or laws may only apply for a fixed time. It is up to the reader to be rational about dispensational content. Jesus, teaching the multitudes in Luke Chapter 14, says in verse: 26,


"If anyone come to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple."


Because He was teaching Jewish multitudes:

A.                 Does He mean that a first century Jew must hate all family to become a disciple of Christ? (No)

B.                 Does this mean that this does not apply to a 21st century Jew who is seeking discipleship? (No)

C.                 Does then this mean that those words don't apply to the 21st century Christian because he's not a Jew (No)

D.                 Does then this mean that those words don't apply because he's not living in the 1st century? (No)


Certainly Jesus is teaching a universal principle here about the First Commandment.

"Thou shalt love the Lord your God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul and with all thy might."


We are instead to understand that Jesus was speaking a universal truth; that the Love FOR God comes first before everything else. That principle applies to all people across all time.


So remember, if loving "that sweet young thing," removes the calling of Jesus the Christ from your heart... you could never be His disciple.


Jesus was intense in these words. He was describing a very simple truth. If you wind up in Hell because you chose NOT God ... then the choice you should have made was rather to HATE the person or thing that prevented you from choosing Him. His words are very much the definition of the requirements that God demands.


A similar verse, Matthew 5:30, where Jesus says that you should cut your hand off if it keeps you from His kingdom. While it seems gruesome or awkward ... it would be better if you did cut off your hand ... than go into eternal Hell.


So it takes active engagement with the Word of God in order to determine context and then meaning.


When we get to "The Sermon on the Mount," in Chapters 5-7, the question will arise, "Do these words only apply to Jews in the Kingdom Age" because that was the CONTEXT of His teaching.


The answer can be complicated and we need to know CONTEXT and also have an understanding of what the "real" message is before you can understand the full meaning of such verses.



I.  "Characteristics of Matthew" [3]


M - Methodical; i.e., characterized by orderliness.
          The author goes to work according to a definite plan, setting forth that Jesus is, indeed, the Christ.

A - Appealing.
          This Gospel has been called "the most important book in the world" (Renan), "the most successful book ever written" (Goodspeed).  Besides being important and successful it is also truly beautiful.  Reading it from beginning to end at one sitting is a thrilling experience.  The book is simply irresistible.

T - Turned toward the Past.
          Turned toward the past; i.e., toward the Old Testament, with its many Messianic predictions, and proclaiming their fulfillment in the present, namely, in Jesus Christ.

T - Turned toward the Present.
          Turned toward the present, and revealing God's will for the here and now; and toward the future:  His own (suffering, death, resurrection, etc.), that of His people, and that of the world.  In Matthew not only is Jesus the fulfillment of prophecy; he is also himself very definitely the prophet.

H - Hebraistic.
          Hebraistic, that is, characterized by the thought patterns and spirit of the Hebrews.

E - Evangelistic, that is having a broad missionary purpose.
          Matthew makes it very clear that this Messiah of prophecy stands related to the entire world.  In His family tree not only a good many direct descendants of Abraham are mentioned but also such "foreigners" as Tamar, Rahab, and Ruth.  It is Christ Himself who said, "The kingdom of God shall be taken away from you, and shall be given to a nation bringing forth its fruits" (21:43).

W - Written.
          Written by a man whose qualifications correspond with these characteristics.


II. Information on the Book of Matthew[4]


Matthew, Gospel of:
          The first book of the N.T.  It was undoubtedly placed first in the category of the four gospels because at an early date it was received as authentic and presented the life of Jesus Christ particularly as it affected Jews converted to Christianity.


1.        The Theme:
          The subject of the book is outlined in the first verse.  The gospel of Matthew is "the book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham" (Matthew 1:1).


2.        The Outline:
           Part I.    The King, the Son of David, offered to Israel, 1:1-25:46
           A.    The genealogy and birth of the King, 1:1-25
           B.    The infancy and concealment of the King, 2:1-23
           C.    The Kingdom presented to Israel and rejected, 3:1-11:1
           D.    The revelation of the King's new program, 11:2-13:52
           E.    The ministry of the rejected King, 14:1-23:39
           F.    The rejected King's promise to return in power and glory, 24:1-25:46
          Part II.    The King, the Son of Abraham, put to death and raised again, 26:1-28:8
          Part III.   The King, in resurrection ministry to His disciples, 28:9-20


3.        The Author:
          This gospel was incontestably written by the Apostle Matthew, whose original name was Levi.  He was a Jew whose father's name was Alphaeus.  As he was a tax collector under the Romans at Capernaum and thus a hated publican, it is unthinkable that his name would have been attached to the first gospel had he not been the actual writer of it.  Moreover, seventeen independent witnesses of the first four centuries attest its genuineness.


4.        Original Language:
          Despite the critical claim that Matthew originally wrote the gospel in Aramaic, this contention has never been proved.  If there was an Aramaic original, it disappeared at a very early age.  The Greek gospel, which is now the Church's heritage, was almost beyond doubt written in Matthew's lifetime.  (The Jewish historian Josephus furnishes an illustration of the fate of the Hebrew original of Matthew, if such ever existed.  The celebrated historian himself tells us that he penned his great work, "The History of the Jews' Wars" originally in Aramaic, his native tongue, for the benefit of his own nation, and that he subsequently rendered it in Greek).


5.        Date:
          The Book of Matthew, like the other synoptics and the Book of Acts, does not report the fall of Jerusalem and the temple but describes these events as still future.  These books have been written before this tragedy or a long time after it.  It would be indeed audacious to put them long after 70 A.D.  Therefore, they must have been penned before that date.  Since Luke's gospel is earlier than Acts, it seems entirely probable that if he wrote an Aramaic original he did so probably around 40-45 A.D.  This would place the Greek Matthew around the middle of the first century A.D.


6.        The Purpose:
          Matthew seems definitely to have written to confirm persecuted Jewish believers in their faith and to reconcile them in their thinking that the gospel was not a rejection of O.T. prophecies but rather an outworking of the great promises of the Abrahamic and Davidic Covenants.  The Jews needed clear demonstration of the Messiah's Person and work and to have objections removed which hindered unbelieving Jews.  The writer accomplishes this purpose by proving the Kingship of the predicted divine-human Messiah; that He fulfilled O.T. predictions in His Person and work were rejected by the nation; that he announced a new program; His death, resurrection and Second Advent, and that after this present age of His building the Church, He will return to set up His kingdom.  It is thus uniquely the gospel for the Jews.


Dr. Clarence E. Mason, Jr.



Properly there is no such thing as a gospel BY Matthew, or Luke, or John.  There is only one GOSPEL.  Various aspects of that gospel, as embodied in the Lord Jesus, are portrayed in the writings of the Evangelists (as the writers of the four gospel narratives are called).  So actually we have before us what might be described as the SPIRIT-breathed Gospel THROUGH Matthew.


Old testament prophecies pointed toward a Coming one.  There were innumerable prophecies made as to what He would be and do, but all of these come under the general heads of:  Christ as a KING, a SERVANT, a MAN, and GOD.  This is the purpose of the Evangelists.  They present Christ in these aspects of His life and death and subsequent events.  For this reason seeming discrepancies disturb those who look at the Gospels as merely four Lives of Christ.


But this same situation would be presented if one read books about Dwight Eisenhower in the aspects of Statesman, Traveler, Soldier, Golfer.  There would be seemingly glaring contradictions between the view of him as the dignified statesman in full dress and as a rough and ready infantry major, etc.  Or take, for instance any well known building.  If a different man or woman were to describe its appearance from each of four positions -- north, south, east, and west sides -- when these descriptions were compared, there would seem to be ample ground for concluding that they did not refer to the same building, although there would be some points in common.  so it is with the Gospels.  These books give us the complete view of Christ that the Holy Spirit intended.


Some very significant words in Old Testament prophecies indicate the distinctive viewpoint from which each gospel writer foresaw Christ's person and ministry:


MATTHEW: "Behold THY KING," Zechariah 9:9
"Behold MY SERVANT," Isaiah 42:1
"Behold THE MAN," Zechariah 6:12
"Behold YOUR GOD," Isaiah 40:9

Matthew - the Zechariah passage does not say "Behold THE king, or the king of the ROMANS" or of anything of the kind, because He is King of the Jews, to whom the passage was spoken:  "Behold THY King."  Matthew is not writing a life of Christ.  He is merely setting down those things which set forth Christ as Israel's long-promised Messiah-King.


Mark - "Behold MY SERVANT."  God is speaking.  Christ is not man's servant but GOD's.  He served FOR God at HIS bidding.  Christ could have healed all at the pool of Bethesda, but He healed only one; for some inscrutable reason God gave orders that way; He was not the servant of man.  That's where these humanitarians go wrong; they think Christ served man primarily.  He served God primarily; man incidentally and secondarily.


Luke - "Behold THE MAN."  Christ is THE SECOND MAN; He has no connection with Adam, THE FIRST MAN.  His supernatural birth affirms this.  He is the Head of a new creation of man.  It is the only way He could redeem man.


John - "Behold YOUR GOD."  His deity is emphasized throughout.  "The Word was God" (1:1).


For the simple reason that the books are not LIVES of Christ, there can be no such thing as a complete chronological harmony of the Gospels.


Each Gospel might be compared to a painting.  On the canvas of Matthew we have the striking face and carriage of Christ as King, with flashes in the background of Christ as Man, God, Servant.  So correspondingly with others.  The characteristic of the particular book dominates the painting, but other phases can be seen at times.

Some peculiarities of each Gospel may be noted:


Book:  MATTHEW   Theme:  Jesus The KING   Written to: The Jews   Key question:  Who are Jesus' ancestors?


1.    Genealogy:  Abraham - David
       In Abraham they have the LAND
       In David they have the THRONE


2.    "Kingdom of Heaven":  Phrase peculiar to Matthew
Used 32 times here and nowhere else in the New Testament. It is not a Kingdom IN heaven, but the Kingdom OF heaven ON earth with One as King who is Himself ruled BY heaven.


3.    "City of the Great King,"  5:35


4.    As King He asserts Authority.
Our Lord says:  "Ye have heard ... but I say unto you."  He does not abrogate what has gone before, but assumes higher authority.


5.    As King He exercises His authority.
Sending forth disciples; performing miracles.


6.    He was "Born King of the Jews,"  2:2
(Herod was not; he was only an Idumean).


7.    In Matthew He is recorded to have been crucified because He said He was King of the Jews, but in John, because He said He was the Son of God.


Book:  MARK   Theme:  Jesus The SERVANT   Written to: The ROMANS   Key question:  What can the man DO?


1.    No genealogy.
      "I don't care who my servant's grandfather was."


2.    "Straightway!"
      Forty of the eighty times the word is used in the N.T. are in Mark.


3.    No record of His birth.
      Would be out of place in Mark; nor is childhood recorded.


4.    Four parables.
      Each is a parable of SERVICE.


5.    He is not called "Lord" in Mark until after resurrection.


6.    Continual action.
      All chapters begin with "And" except 7 and 8, which tell of His rejection BY Israel, and 14, which tells of His rejection OF Israel.  He was always on the go!


7.    No Sermon on the Mount.
      A servant has no business telling people what to do.

      No "Our Father" in Mark.


Book:  LUKE   Theme:  Jesus The MAN   Written to:  The GREEKS   Key question:  What is the IDEAL MAN?


1.    Genealogy -- goes back to Adam, the first man, head of the race.  He is our Kinsman-Redeemer.


2.    Dependent -- prayer prominent; sign of TRUE humanity.


3.    "Everywhere" (9:6).  The twelve and the Seventy are not sent to Jews only.

      Contrast Matthew 10:5-6.


4.    Parables -- no need of thinking Christ spoke them only once.

      Parables similar to Matthew, but adapted to the object of this book.  The "King" in Matthew is made "a certain man" in Luke.


5.    Humanity -- here dominant.

      Weeps over Jerusalem; heals Malchus's ear.  There is the tender incident of the repentant their on the cross.  There is more emphasis on women in Luke than in the other three Gospels.


6.    Sermon on the Mount.  No allusions to old times. prophets, laws, etc.; these things were peculiarly Jewish and did not belong to the whole race.


7.    Garden of Gethsemane -- unique experience as man.

Book:  JOHN   Jesus is GOD   Written to:  The CHURCH   Key question:  What is Jesus' nature?


1.    No human genealogy.  Deity BECAME flesh when He came into the world.
Not MADE flesh.


2.    Garden (John 18) -- no bloody sweat here; when He says "I AM," they fall back.


3.    All shows deity:
      a. Unique signs -- heals at a distance; heals eyes of man Born blind; raises man four days dead; etc.
      b. Unique words -- "Ye must be born again,"  Chapter 3; "I that speak unto thee am He,"  Chapter 4;  His address on His own deity, Chapter 5.


4.    ONLY here is life.  See 20:31.

The way of LIFE is made clear.  We don't get eternal life by obeying the King, nor serving after the manner of the Servant, nor by following in the footsteps of the perfect Man, but by believing and receiving the Son of God.



"Outline of Matthew"[6]
Dr. Paul S. Karleen


I.    Introduction of the King (1:4-4:25)

A.    Genealogy  1:1-17

B.    Birth 1:18-25

C.    Early Life 2:1-23

D.    Ministry of John the Baptist 3:1-12

E.    Baptism of Jesus 3:13-17

F.    Temptation of Jesus 4:1-11

G.    Early Ministry of Jesus 4:12-25

II.   The Principles of the King's Rule: (5:1-7:29)

    A.    The Sermon on the Mount 5:1-7:29

III.  The King's Authority Manifested and Rejected (8:1-12:50)

   The Mysteries of the Kingdom: (13:1-58)

    A.    The Period Between the Two Advents 13:1-58

V.    The Ministry of the Rejected King (14:1-23:39)

VI.   The Predicted Return of the King: (24:1-25:46)

    A.    The Olivet Discourse 24:1-25:46

VII.  The Death and Resurrection of the King 26:1-28:20



"Introduction to The Gospel According to Matthew"[7]
Dr. Charles Caldwell Ryrie



Matthew, who was surnamed Levi (Mark 2:14), was a Jewish tax collector (publican) for the Roman government (Matthew 9:9).  Because he collaborated with the Romans, who were hated by the Jews as overlords of their country, Matthew (and all publicans) was despised by fellow Jews.  Nevertheless, Matthew responded to Christ's simple call to follow Him.  After the account of the banquet he gave for his colleagues so they too could meet Jesus, he is not mentioned again except in the list of the Twelve (Matthew 10:3; see also Acts 1:13).  Tradition says that he preached in Palestine for a dozen years after the resurrection of Christ and then went to other lands, but there is no certainty of this.



Matthew was written to Jews to answer their questions about Jesus of Nazareth who claimed to be their Messiah.  Was He in fact the Messiah predicted in the Old Testament?  If He was, why did He fail to establish the promised kingdom?  Will it ever be established?  What is God's purpose in the meantime?  Thus, in this Gospel, Jesus is often spoken of as the Son of David and the One who fulfills the Old Testament prophecies of Messiah; and the kingdom of heaven is the subject of much of His recorded teaching.


Matthew is also characterized by its inclusion of people outside of Judaism.  The closing verses record the commission to go into all the world, and only in Matthew does the word church appear in the Gospels (16:18; 18:17).  Jesus is also designated as the Son of Abraham (1:1), for in Abraham all the families of the earth shall be blessed" (Gen. 12:3).



Although the Gospel has sometimes been dated in the 80's or 90's, the fact that the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70 is view as an event yet future (24:2) seems to require an earlier date.  Some feel that this was the first of the Gospels to be written (about 50), while others think it was not the first and that it was written in the 60's.



 "The Holy Scriptures Analyzed and Annotated"[8]
Arno C. Gaebelein


I.    The King and the Offer of the Kingdom.  Chapters 1-11

a.    The King, His Genealogy and His Birth.  Chapter 1

b.    The King, Worshipped by Gentiles; Jerusalem in Ignorance of Him; the Child Persecuted.  Chapter 2

c.    The Herald of the King:  The King enters upon His public Ministry.  Chapter 3

d.    The Testing of the King and His Testimony.  Chapter 4

e.    The Proclamation of the King.  Chapters 5-7

f.     The King Manifested by Signs of Divine Power.  Chapters 8-9

g.    The Messengers of the King.  Chapter 10

h.    The Forerunner in Prison and the Rejection of the Kingdom.  Chapter 11

i.     The Rejection Consummated and the Broken Relationship.  Chapter 12

II.   The Rejected Kingdom and the Rejection of the King; His Death and Resurrection.  Chapters 13-28

a.    The King at the Seashore.  the Mysteries of the Kingdom.  Chapter 13

b.    John's Martyrdom and the Fourfold Attitude of the Rejected King.  Chapter 14

c.    The Corruption of the Scribes and Pharisees.  the Canaanitish Woman.  Multitudes Healed.  Chapter 15

d.    The Predictions of the Rejected King Concerning Himself.  Chapter 16

e.    The Coming Glory.  The Helpless Disciples and the Power of the King.  Chapter 17

f.     Instructions to His Disciples.  Concerning Forgiveness.  Chapter 18

g.    Departure from Galilee.  Concerning Divorce.  The Little Children Blessed.  The Rich Young Man.  Chapter 19

h.    The Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard.  The Healing of the Two Blind Men.  Chapter 20

i.     The King's Entry into Jerusalem.  The Parables of the Two Sons and the Householders.  Chapter 21

j.     The Parable of the Marriage Feast.  Questions Answered.  The Unanswered Question.  Chapter 22

k.    The Woes of the King and the Lamentation over Jerusalem.  Chapter 23

l.     The Olivet Discourse.  Chapters 24-25

m.   The Passion of the King.  Chapters 26-27

n.    The Resurrection and the Great Commission.  Chapter 28



 "Matthew" from The Expositor's Bible[9]
George Eldon Ladd


The Birth of the King of the Kingdom 1:1-2:23
Genealogy  1:1-17
Birth Narratives  1:18-2:18
Removal to Nazareth  2:19-23

Prelude to the Messianic King's Ministry  3:1-4:25
Preparatory Ministry of John the Baptist  3:2-12
Baptism of Jesus  3:13-17
Temptation of Jesus  4:1-11
Summary of Galilean Ministry  4:12-25


Discourse I:  Righteousness of the Kingdom  5:1-7:29
The Beatitudes  5:1-16

The Character of Kingdom Righteousness  5:17-48

The Practice of Kingdom Righteousness  6:1-7:12

The Choice of the Kingdom  7:13-27
The Manner of Jesus' Teaching 7:28, 29

Narrative I:  Mighty Deeds of the Kingdom  8:1-9:38
A series of Miracles  8:1-9:8

The Kingdom and the Old Order  9:9-17
More Miracles  9:18-38


Discourse II:  Proclamation of the Kingdom  10:1-42
The Preachers and their Mission  10:1-15
The Response to be Expected  10:16-42


Narrative II:  The Presence of the Kingdom  11:1-12:50
The Kingdom and John the Baptist 11:1-15
The Challenge to the Present Generation  11:16-30

Opposition to the Kingdom  12:1-45

Fellowship in the Kingdom  12:46-50


Discourse III:  Mystery of the Kingdom  13:1-58
The Parable of the Sower  13:1-9
Parabolic Method Explained  13:10-23
Other Parables  13:24-52
The Response to Jesus' Parables  13:53-58

Narrative III:  Crisis of the Kingdom  14:1-17:27
Crisis of Opposition  14:1-15:20
Withdrawal to the North  15:21-39
Further Conflict  16:1-12
Crisis of Faith  16:13-20
Preparation of Jesus' Disciples for His Death  16:21-17:27

Discourse IV:  Fellowship of the Kingdom  18:1-35
Humility  18:1-20
Forgiveness  18:21-35


Narrative IV:  Conflict Caused by the Kingdom  19:1-23:39
Teachings on the Way to Jerusalem  19:1-20:28
Healing at Jericho  20:29-34
Events in Jerusalem  21:1-22
Controversies with the Jews 21:23-22:46
Denunciations of the Scribes and Pharisees  23:1-39


Discourse V:  Future of the Kingdom  24:1-25:46
Prophecy of the Coming of the Kingdom  24:1-36
Warnings to Readiness  24:37-25:30
The Judgment of the Nations  25:31-46


Passion of the Kingdom King  26:1-27:66
The Plot to Betray Jesus  26:1-16
The Last Supper  26:1-16
Events in Gethsemane  26:31-56
The Trials  26:57-27:26
Crucifixion  27:27-56
Burial  27:57-66


The Resurrection and Ascension of the Kingdom King  28:1-20
The Women and the Angel  28:1-10
False Witness of the Guards  28:11-15
The Ascension 28:16-20



G. Campbell Morgan


I.    His Person  1:1-4:16

a.    His Relation to Earth  1:1-3:12

        i.     Genealogy.  1:1-17

        ii.     Birth.  1:18-2:23

        iii.    Herald.  3:1-12

b.    His Relation to Heaven  3:13-17

        i.     Attestation.

        ii.     Anointing.

c.     His Relation to Hell  4:1-11

        i.      Testing.

        ii.     Triumph.
     (IV.4:12-16 Connecting 3:17 with 11:2)

II.   His Propaganda  4:17-16:20

a.    His Enunciation of Laws  4:17-7:29

        i.      A Nucleus Gathered.  4:17-25

        ii.     The Manifesto.  5-7

1.    The Nature - Character.  5:3-12

2.    The Purpose - Influence.  5:13-16

3.    The Laws.  5:17-6:34

4.    The Dynamic.  7:1-12

5.    The Final Words.  7:13-29

b.    His Exhibition of Benefits.  8:1-9:34

        i.      First Manifestation and Result.  8:1-22

        ii.     Second Manifestation and Result.  8:23-9:17

        iii.     Third Manifestation and Result.  9:18:34

c.     His Enforcement of Claims.  9:35-16:20

        i.      The Twelve.  9:35-11:30

        ii.      Conflict with Rulers.  12

        iii.     Parables of the Kingdom.  13:1-52

        iv.     Increasing Opposition.  13:53-16:12

        v.      The Confession of Peter.  16:13-20

III.  His Passion  16:12-28:20

a.    His Cross and His Subjects.  16:21-20:34

        i.      The Cross and the Glory.  16:21-28

        ii.      The Glory and the Cross.  17:1-21

        iii.      The Cross and the Resurrection.  17:22-23

        iv.     Instructions to His Disciples.  17:24-18:35
                 (The Multitudes.  19:1-22)

       v.       Instructions to His Disciples.  19:23-20:28

b.    His Rejection of the Hebrew Nation.  21:1-23:39

        i.       The Entry.  21:1-17

        ii.      Opposition and Parabolic Denunciation  21:18-22:46

        iii.      The Final Woes.  23:1-36

        iv.      Withdrawal.  23:37-39

c.     His Predictions to His Subjects.  24:1-25:51

        i.       the Disciples' Questions.  24:3

        ii.      The Detailed Answers.

d.    His Passion.  26:1-28:20

        i.       Preliminary.  26:1-30

        ii.      The Suffering.  26:31-27:66
        iii.     The Triumph.  28

Unknown - 1936 Bibliotheca Sacra article.

Messiah in Both Testaments



Christ was never a secret kept from the people of God I wish to present in outline form a portion of the Truth in the Old Testament that refers to Christ and the corresponding New Testament passages.


1.   Seed of the woman: Gen 3:15......Gal 4:4; 1 John 3:8.

2.   Through Abraham: Gen 17:7; 22:18 ......Gal 3:16; John 11:51, 52.

3.   Through Isaac: Gen 21:12......Heb 11:17–19.

4.   Through Jacob and Judah: Gen 28:14......Heb 11:20; Rev 5:5.

5.   Through David: 2 Sam 7:12, 13; Ps 132:11; Jer 23:5; ......Luke 1:32; Acts 2:29, 30; 13:23; Rom 1:3, 4.

6.   As to His birth:

a.        Time: Gen 49:10......Luke 2:1, 2.

b.        Place: Micah 5:2......Matt 2:1.

c.        Born of a virgin: Isa 7:14......Matt 1:18; 1:21–23.

d.        Great persons come to adore Him: Ps 72:10......Matt 2:2, 11.

7.   Boyhood life:

a.        Children slain: Jer 31:15......Matt 2:16–18.

b.        Called out of Egypt: Hosea 11:1......Matt 2:15.

c.        Coming into the Temple: Haggai 2:7, 9......Luke 2:27, 32.

8.   Preceded by John the Baptist: Mal 3:1; Isa 40:3......Luke 1:17; Matt 3:1, 3.

9.   Anointed with the Spirit: Isa 11:2......Acts 10:38.

10.  Offices:

a.        Prophet: Deut 18:15......Acts 3:20–22.

b.        Priest: Ps 110:4......Heb 5:5, 6.

c.        King: Ps 2:6......Luke 1:32.

11.  Humiliations and sufferings:

a.        Poverty: Isa 53:2......Luke 9:58.

b.        Bearing reproach: Ps 69:9......Rom 15:3.

c.        Rejected by His brethren: Ps 69:8......John 1:11.

d.        Hated: Ps 69:4......John 15:24, 25.

e.        Smitten on cheek: Mic 5:1......Matt 27:30.

12.  Death on the cross: Ps 22:16......John 19:18.

13.  Resurrection: Ps 16:10......Luke 24:6, 31, 34.

14.  Ascension: Ps 68:18......Acts 1:9.

15.  Second Coming: Dan 7:13......Acts 1:11.



[1] Interpretation VS. Application: For the purposes of this Bible book study, and all right division of the Word of God, it is important to know the proper definition of these two words. Interpretation is what was meant in the mind of God when He reveals His word. Application is how we take that meaning and apply it to time and space. This is a very simple definition and we will expand upon it in a separate addendum.

[2] Gaebelein, Arno Clemens, The Gospel of Matthew An Exposition, Our Hope, New York, 1910

[3]     Hendriksen, William. (1973). Condensed from: New Testament Commentary: Matthew, Gospel of. p. 79 ff. Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Michigan.

[4] ibid.
[5]     Mason, Dr. Clarence E. Jr. Dr. Clarence E. Mason, Professor Emeritus, Philadelphia College of Bible, (c.1971) New Testament History: The Book of Matthew. Class Notes
[6]     Karleen, Dr. Paul S. Professor of Greek and Bible. Philadelphia College of Bible (1987). "The Handbook to Bible Study" with a guide to the Scofield study system. Oxford University Press, New York, Oxford
[7]     Ryrie, Dr. Charles Caldwell. (1994) Chairman, Department of Systematic Theology. Dallas Theological Seminary. Condensed from: "The Ryrie Study Bible: Introduction to The Gospel According to Matthew".NASB - Moody Press
[8]     ibid.
[7]     Gaebelein, Arno C. (c. 1970). "The Holy Scriptures Analyzed and Annotated: Matthew" - Moody Press, Loizeaux Bothers
[9]     Ladd . "The Expositor's Bible - Matthew" Unger, Merrill F. (1976). Condensed from: Unger's Bible Dictionary: Matthew, Gospel of. p. 705 ff. Moody Press, Chicago, Ill
[10]     Morgan, G. Campbell, "The Analyzed Bible - Matthew, Jesus Christ the King", Revell



1. J. Deering's Commentary on the Introduction

2. J. Deering's Comments on using the dispensational method

3.  Hendricksen's Characteristics of Matthew

4.  Hendricksen's Information on the Book of Matthew

5. Mason's Introduction to Matthew

6. Mason's Synopsis of The Gospel of Matthew

7. Mason's New Testament Chronology

8. Karleen's Outline of Matthew

9. Ryrie's Introduction to The Gospel According to Matthew

10. Ryrie's Outline of The Gospel of Matthew

11. Gaebelein's Introduction to Matthew

12. Gaebelein's Notes on Matthew

13. Ladd's Matthew

14. G. Campbell Morgan's Matthew - Jesus Christ the King

15. Note concerning the prophecies that Jesus the Christ fulfilled


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