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Matthew Chapter Four


Matthew 4

Having thus in grace taken up His position as man on earth, He commences His earthly career, being led of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. The righteous and holy man, the Son of God, enjoying the privileges proper to such a one, He must undergo the trial of those devices through which the first Adam fell. It is His spiritual condition which is tested. It is not now an innocent man in the enjoyment of all God's natural blessings, who is put to the proof in the midst of those blessings which should have made him remember God. Christ, nigh to God as His beloved Son, but in the midst of trial, having the knowledge of good and evil, and as to outward circumstances come down into the midst of man's fallen state, must have His faithfulness to this position fully tried with respect to His perfect obedience. To maintain this position, He must have no other will than that of His Father, and fulfil it or suffer it, whatever might be the consequences to Himself. He must fulfil it in the midst of all the difficulties, the privations, the isolation, the desert, where Satan's power was, which might tempt Him to follow an easier path than that which should be only for the glory of His Father. He must renounce all the rights that belonged to His own Person, save as He should receive them from God, yielding them up to Him with a perfect trust.

The enemy did his utmost to induce Him to make use of His privileges, "if thou be the Son of God," for His own relief, apart from the command of God, and in avoidance of the sufferings which might accompany the performance of His will. But it was to lead Him to do His own will, not God's.

Jesus, enjoying in His own Person and relationship with God the full favour of God as Son of God, the light of His countenance, goes into the wilderness for forty days to be in conflict with the enemy. He did not go away from man, and from all intercourse with man and the things of man, in order (like Moses and Elias) to be with God. Being already fully with God, He is separate from men by the power of the Holy Ghost to be alone in His conflict with the enemy. In the case of Moses, it was man out of his natural condition to be with God. In the case of Jesus, it is so to be with the enemy: to be with God was His natural position.

The enemy tempts Him first by proposing to Him to satisfy His bodily need, and, instead of waiting on God, to employ according to His own will and on His own behalf the power with which He was endowed. But, if Israel was fed in the wilderness with manna from God, the Son of God, however great His power, would act in accordance with what Israel should have learnt by that means, namely, that "man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." The Man, the obedient Jew, the Son of God, waited for this word, and would do nothing without it. He was not come to do His own will, but the will of Him who sent Him. This is the principle that characterises the Spirit of Christ in the Psalms. No deliverance is accepted but the intervention of Jehovah at His own good time. It is perfect patience, in order to be perfect and complete in allthe will of God. There could be no sinful lust in Christ; but to be hungry was no sin, yet it was a human need, and what harm in eating when hungry? There was no will of God to do it, and that will by the word He came to do. Satan's suggestion was, "if thou be the Son of God, command"; but He had taken the place of a servant, and this was not commanding: he sought to get the Lord out of the place of perfect service and obedience, out of the place of a servant.

And note here the place the written word has, and the character of Christ's obedience. This character is not simply that the will of God is a rule; it is the one motive for action. We have a will arrested often by the word. Not so Christ. His Father's will was His motive; He acted not merely according to, but because it was, God's will. We delight to see a child who would run off to something it delights in, stop and cheerfully do its parents' will when called to do it. But Christ never obeyed thus, never sought a will of His own, but was stopped by His Father's. And we are sanctified to the obedience of Christ. Note further that the written word is that by which He lives and by which He overcomes. All depended here on Christ's victory, as all did on Adam's fall. But for Christ, one text, rightly used of course, suffices. He seeks no other: that is obedience. It suffices for Satan; he has no reply. His wiles are thus defeated.

The first principle of conquest is simple and absolute obedience, living by words out of God's mouth. The next is perfect confidence in the path of obedience.

In the second place then, the enemy sets Him on a pinnacle of the temple, to induce Him to apply to Himself the promises made to the Messiah, without abiding in the ways of God. The faithful man may assuredly reckon on the help of God while walking in His ways. The enemy would have the Son of man put God to the test (instead of reckoning on Him while walking in His ways) to see whether He might be trusted in. This would have been a want of confidence in God, not obedience; or pride, presuming on its privileges, instead of counting on God in obedience. [1] Taking His place with Israel in the condition they were in when without a king in the land, and, quoting the directions given to them in that book to guide them in the godly path there taught, He uses for His guidance that part of the word which contains the divine injunction on this subject, "Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God"; a passage often quoted as if it forbade excess in trusting God; whereas it means not to distrust, and try if He is faithful. They tempted God, saying, Is God indeed among us? And this Satan would have had the Lord do.

The enemy, failing to deceive that obedient heart, even by hiding himself under the use of the word of God, shows himself in his true character, tempting the Lord, thirdly, to spare Himself all the sufferings that awaited Him, by shewing Him the inheritance of the Son of man on earth, that which would be His when He had reached it through all those paths, toilsome yet necessary to the Father's glory, which the Father had marked out for Him. All should now be His, if He would acknowledge Satan by worshipping him, the god of this world. This in fact was what the kings of the earth had done for only a part of these things; how often done for some trifling vanity! but He should have the whole. But if Jesus was to inherit earthly glory (as well as all other) the object of His heart was God Himself, His Father, to glorify Him. Whatever might be the value of the gift, it was as the gift of the Giver that His heart prized it. Moreover He was in the positionof tested man and a faithful Israelite; and whatever might be the trial of patience into which the sin of the people had brought Him, be the trial ever so great, He would serve none but His God alone.

But if the devil carries temptation, sin, to the utmost, and shews himself to be the adversary (Satan), the believer has the right to cast him out. If he comes as a tempter, the believer should answer him by the faithfulness of the word, which is man's perfect guide, according to the will of God. He does not need to see through everything. The word is the word of Him who does, and in following that, we walk according to a wisdom which knows everything, and in a path formed by that wisdom, and which hence involves absolute trust in God. The two first temptations were the wiles of the devil, the third, open hostility to God. If he comes as the open adversary of God, the believer has a right to have nothing to do with him. "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." He knows he has met Christ, not flesh. May believers resist if Satan would tempt them by the world, remembering it is Satan's domain in fallen man!

The believer's safeguard, morally (that is, as to the state of his heart) is a single eye. If I seek only the glory of God, that which presents no other motive than my own aggrandisement, or my own gratification, whether of body or mind, will have no hold upon me; and will shew itself in the light of the word, which guides the single eye, as contrary to the mind of God. This is not the haughtiness that rejects temptation on the ground of being good; it is obedience, humbly giving God His place, and consequently His word also. "By the word of thy lips I have kept me from the paths of the destroyer," from him that did his own will and made it his guide. If the heart seeks God alone, the most subtle snare is discovered, for the enemy never tempts us to seek God alone. But this supposes a pure heart, and that there is no self-seeking. This was displayed in Jesus.

Our safeguard against temptation is the word, used by the discernment of a perfectly pure heart, which lives in the presence of God, and learns the mind of God in His word, [2] and therefore knows its application to the circumstances presented. It is the word that preserves the soul from the wiles of the enemy.

Observe also that, consequently, it is in the spirit of simple and humble obedience that power lies; for where it exists, Satan can do nothing. God is there, and accordingly the enemy is conquered.

It appears to me that these three temptations are addressed to the Lord in the three characters, of man, of Messiah, and of Son of man.

He had no sinful desires like fallen man, but He was an hungered. The tempter would persuade Him to satisfy this need without God.

The promises in the Psalms belonged to Him as being made to the Messiah.

And all the kingdoms of the world were His as the Son of man.

He always replies as a faithful Israelite, personally responsible to God, making use of the Book of Deuteronomy, which treats of this subject (namely, the obedience of Israel, in connection with the possession of the land, and the privileges that belonged to the people in connection with this obedi nce; and this, apart from the organisation which constituted them a corporate body before God). [3]

Satan departs from Him, and the angels come to exercise their ministry towards the Messiah, the Son of man victorious through obedience. What Satan would have Him try God about, He has fully. They are ministering spirits for us also.

But how profoundly interesting is it to see the blessed Lord come down, the Son of God from heaven, and take-the Word made flesh-His place among the poor godly ones on the earth, and, as having taken that place, owned of the Father as His Son, heaven being opened and opened to Him as man, and the Holy Ghost coming down and abiding on Him as man though without measure, and so forming the model of our place, though we were not yet in it; the whole Trinity, as I have said, being first fully revealed when He is thus associated with man; and then, we being slaves to Satan, going in this character and relationship to meet also Satan for us, to bind the strong man, and give man through Him this place also: only for us redemption was needed to bring us where He is.

John being cast into prison, the Lord departs into Galilee. This movement, which determined the scene of His ministry outside Jerusalem and Judea, had great significance with respect to the Jews. The people (so far as centred in Jerusalem, and boasting in the possession of the promises, the sacrifices, and the temple, and in being the royal tribe) lost the presence of the Messiah, the Son of David. He went away for the manifestation of His Person, for the testimony of God's intervention in Israel, to the poor and despised of the flock; for the remnant and poor of the flock are already in chapters 3, 4 clearly distinguished from the heads of the people. He thus really became the true stock, instead of being a branch of that which had been planted elsewhere; although this effect was not yet fully manifested. The moment corresponds with John 4.

We may remark here, that, in John's Gospel, the Jews are always distinguished from the multitude (called the people in the Gospels). The language, or rather the pronunciation, was entirely different. They did not speak Chaldee in Galilee.

At the same time this manifestation of the Son of David in Galilee was the fulfilment of a prophecy in Isaiah. The force of that prophecy is this:-although the Roman captivity was far more terrible than the invasion of the Assyrians when they came up against the land of Israel, there was nevertheless this circumstance which altered everything, namely, the presence of the Messiah, the true Light, in the land.

We observe that the Spirit of God here passes over the whole history of Jesus until the commencement of His ministry after the death of John the Baptist. He gives Jesus His proper position in the midst of Israel-Emmanuel, the Son of David, the Beloved of God, acknowledged as His Son, the faithful One in Israel, though exposed to all Satan's temptations; and then at once, afterwards, His prophetic position announced by Isaiah, and the kingdom proclaimed as at hand. [4]


[1] We need confidence to have courage to obey; but true confidence is found in the path of obedience. Satan could use the word in guile, but not turn Christ the Lord from it. He still uses it as the adequate divine weapon, and Satan still has no reply. To have forbidden obedience would have been to shew himself Satan. As regards the place in which the Lord was dispensationally, we may remark the Lord always quotes from Deuteronomy.

[2] There must be no other motive for action than the will of God, which, for man, is always to be found in the word; because, in that case, when Satan tempts us to act, as he always does, by some other motive, this motive is seen to be opposed to the word which is in the heart, and to the motive which governs the heart, and is therefore judged as being opposed to it. It is written, "Thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against thee." This is the reason why it is so often important, when we are in doubt, to ask ourselves by what motive we are influenced.

[3] A careful examination of the Pentateuch will shew that, though needed historical facts are stated, yet the contents of Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers are essentially typical.The tabernacle was made according to the pattern shewn in the mount-the pattern of heavenly things; and not only the ceremonial ordinances, but the historical facts, as the apostle distinctly states, happened unto them for types, and are written for our instruction. Deuteronomy gives directions for their conduct in the land; but the three books named, even where there are historical facts, are typical in their object. I do not know if one sacrifice was offered after they were instituted, unless perhaps the official ones (see Acts 7:42).

[4] And we may remark here, that He leaves the Jews and Jerusalem, as already remarked, and His natural place, so to speak, what gave Him His name, Nazareth, and takes His prophetic place. The casting of John into prison was significant of His own rejection. John was His forerunner in it, as in his mission, of the Lord. See chapter 17:12. The testimony of Jesus is the same as that of John the Baptist.

── John DarbySynopsis of Matthew


Matthew 4

Chapter Contents

The temptation of Christ. (1-11) The opening of Christ's ministry in Galilee. (12-17) Call of Simon and others. (18-22) Jesus teaches and works miracles. (23-25)

Commentary on Matthew 4:1-11

(Read Matthew 4:1-11)

Concerning Christ's temptation, observe, that directly after he was declared to be the Son of God, and the Saviour of the world, he was tempted; great privileges, and special tokens of Divine favour, will not secure any from being tempted. But if the Holy Spirit witness to our being adopted as children of God, that will answer all the suggestions of the evil spirit. Christ was directed to the combat. If we presume upon our own strength, and tempt the devil to tempt us, we provoke God to leave us to ourselves. Others are tempted, when drawn aside of their own lust, and enticed, James 1:14; but our Lord Jesus had no corrupt nature, therefore he was tempted only by the devil. In the temptation of Christ it appears that our enemy is subtle, spiteful, and very daring; but he can be resisted. It is a comfort to us that Christ suffered, being tempted; for thus it appears that our temptations, if not yielded to, are not sins, they are afflictions only. Satan aimed in all his temptations, to bring Christ to sin against God. 1. He tempted him to despair of his Father's goodness, and to distrust his Father's care concerning him. It is one of the wiles of Satan to take advantage of our outward condition; and those who are brought into straits have need to double their guard. Christ answered all the temptations of Satan with "It is written;" to set us an example, he appealed to what was written in the Scriptures. This method we must take, when at any time we are tempted to sin. Let us learn not to take any wrong courses for our supply, when our wants are ever so pressing: in some way or other the Lord will provide. 2. Satan tempted Christ to presume upon his Father's power and protection, in a point of safety. Nor are any extremes more dangerous than despair and presumption, especially in the affairs of our souls. Satan has no objection to holy places as the scene of his assaults. Let us not, in any place, be off our watch. The holy city is the place, where he does, with the greatest advantage, tempt men to pride and presumption. All high places are slippery places; advancements in the world makes a man a mark for Satan to shoot his fiery darts at. Is Satan so well versed in Scripture as to be able to quote it readily? He is so. It is possible for a man to have his head full of Scripture notions, and his mouth full of Scripture expressions, while his heart is full of bitter enmity to God and to all goodness. Satan misquoted the words. If we go out of our way, out of the way of our duty, we forfeit the promise, and put ourselves out of God's protection. This passage, Deuteronomy 8:3, made against the tempter, therefore he left out part. This promise is firm and stands good. But shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? No. 3. Satan tempted Christ to idolatry with the offer of the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them. The glory of the world is the most charming temptation to the unthinking and unwary; by that men are most easily imposed upon. Christ was tempted to worship Satan. He rejected the proposal with abhorrence. "Get thee hence, Satan!" Some temptations are openly wicked; and they are not merely to be opposed, but rejected at once. It is good to be quick and firm in resisting temptation. If we resist the devil he will flee from us. But the soul that deliberates is almost overcome. We find but few who can decidedly reject such baits as Satan offers; yet what is a man profited if he gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Christ was succoured after the temptation, for his encouragement to go on in his undertaking, and for our encouragement to trust in him; for as he knew, by experience, what it was to suffer, being tempted, so he knew what it was to be succoured, being tempted; therefore we may expect, not only that he will feel for his tempted people, but that he will come to them with seasonable relief.

Commentary on Matthew 4:12-17

(Read Matthew 4:12-17)

It is just with God to take the gospel and the means of grace, from those that slight them and thrust them away. Christ will not stay long where he is not welcome. Those who are without Christ, are in the dark. They were sitting in this condition, a contented posture; they chose it rather than light; they were willingly ignorant. When the gospel comes, light comes; when it comes to any place, when it comes to any soul, it makes day there. Light discovers and directs; so does the gospel. The doctrine of repentance is right gospel doctrine. Not only the austere John Baptist, but the gracious Jesus, preached repentance. There is still the same reason to do so. The kingdom of heaven was not reckoned to be fully come, till the pouring out of the Holy Spirit after Christ's ascension.

Commentary on Matthew 4:18-22

(Read Matthew 4:18-22)

When Christ began to preach, he began to gather disciples, who should be hearers, and afterwards preachers of his doctrine, who should be witnesses of his miracles, and afterwards testify concerning them. He went not to Herod's court, not to Jerusalem, among the chief priests and the elders, but to the sea of Galilee, among the fishermen. The same power which called Peter and Andrew, could have wrought upon Annas and Caiaphas, for with God nothing is impossible. But Christ chooses the foolish things of the world to confound the wise. Diligence in an honest calling is pleasing to Christ, and it is no hinderance to a holy life. Idle people are more open to the temptations of Satan than to the calls of God. It is a happy and hopeful thing to see children careful of their parents, and dutiful. When Christ comes, it is good to be found doing. Am I in Christ? is a very needful question to ask ourselves; and, next to that, Am I in my calling? They had followed Christ before, as common disciples, John 1:37; now they must leave their calling. Those who would follow Christ aright, must, at his command, leave all things to follow him, must be ready to part with them. This instance of the power of the Lord Jesus encourages us to depend upon his grace. He speaks, and it is done.

Commentary on Matthew 4:23-25

(Read Matthew 4:23-25)

Wherever Christ went, he confirmed his Divine mission by miracles, which were emblems of the healing power of his doctrine, and the influences of the Spirit which accompanied it. We do not now find the Saviour's miraculous healing power in our bodies; but if we are cured by medicine, the praise is equally his. Three general words are here used. He healed every sickness or disease; none was too bad; none too hard, for Christ to heal with a word. Three diseases are named; the palsy, which is the greatest weakness of the body; lunacy, which is the greatest malady of the mind; and possession of the devil, which is the greatest misery and calamity of both; yet Christ healed all, and by thus curing bodily diseases, showed that his great errand into the world was to cure spiritual maladies. Sin is the sickness, disease, and torment of the soul: Christ came to take away sin, and so to heal the soul.

── Matthew HenryConcise Commentary on Matthew


Matthew 4

Verse 2

[2] And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.

Having fasted — Whereby doubtless he received more abundant spiritual strength from God.

Forty days and forty nights — As did Moses, the giver of the law, and Elijah, the great restorer of it.

He was afterward hungry — And so prepared for the first temptation.

Verse 3

[3] And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.

Coming to him — In a visible form; probably in a human shape, as one that desired to inquire farther into the evidences of his being the Messiah.

Verse 4

[4] But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

It is written — Thus Christ answered, and thus we may answer all the suggestions of the devil.

By every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God — That is, by whatever God commands to sustain him. Therefore it is not needful I should work a miracle to procure bread, without any intimation of my Father's will. Deuteronomy 8:3.

Verse 5

[5] Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,

The holy city — So Jerusalem was commonly called, being the place God had peculiarly chosen for himself.

On the battlement of the temple — Probably over the king's gallery, which was of such a prodigious height, that no one could look down from the top of it without making himself giddy.

Verse 6

[6] And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.

In their hands — That is, with great care. Psalms 91:11,12.

Verse 7

[7] Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God — By requiring farther evidence of what he hath already made sufficiently plain. Deuteronomy 6:16.

Verse 8

[8] Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;

Showeth him all the kingdoms of the world — In a kind of visionary representation.

Verse 9

[9] And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.

If thou wilt fall down and worship me — Here Satan clearly shows who he was. Accordingly Christ answering this suggestion, calls him by his own name, which he had not done before.

Verse 10

[10] Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

Get thee hence, Satan — Not, get thee behind me, that is, into thy proper place; as he said on a quite different occasion to Peter, speaking what was not expedient. Deuteronomy 6:13.

Verse 11

[11] Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

Angels came and waited upon him — Both to supply him with food, and to congratulate his victory.

Verse 12

[12] Now when Jesus had heard that John was cast into prison, he departed into Galilee;

He retired into Galilee — This journey was not immediately after his temptation. He first went from Judea into Galilee, John 1:43; 2:1. Then into Judea again, and celebrated the passover at Jerusalem, John 2:13. He baptized in Judea while John was baptizing at Enon, John 3:22,23. All this time John was at liberty, John 3:24. But the Pharisees being offended, John 4:1; and John put in prison, he then took this journey into Galilee. Mark 1:14.

Verse 13

[13] And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim:

Leaving Nazareth — Namely, when they had wholly rejected his word, and even attempted to kill him, Luke 4:29.

Verse 15

[15] The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles;

Galilee of the Gentiles — That part of Galilee which lay beyond Jordan was so called, because it was in a great measure inhabited by Gentiles, that is, heathens. Isaiah 9:1,2.

Verse 16

[16] The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.

Here is a beautiful gradation, first, they walked, then they sat in darkness, and lastly, in the region of the shadow of death.

Verse 17

[17] From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

From that time Jesus began to preach — He had preached before, both to Jews and Samaritans, John 4:41,45. But from this time begin his solemn stated preaching.

Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand — Although it is the peculiar business of Christ to establish the kingdom of heaven in the hearts of men, yet it is observable, he begins his preaching in the same words with John the Baptist: because the repentance which John taught still was, and ever will be, the necessary preparation for that inward kingdom. But that phrase is not only used with regard to individuals in whom it is to be established, but also with regard to the Christian Church, the whole body of believers. In the former sense it is opposed to repentance; in the latter the Mosaic dispensation.

Verse 18

[18] And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.

Mark 1:16; Luke 5:1.

Verse 23

[23] And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.

The Gospel of the kingdom — The Gospel, that is, the joyous message, is the proper name of our religion: as will be amply verified in all who earnestly and perseveringly embrace it.

Verse 24

[24] And his fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatick, and those that had the palsy; and he healed them.

Through all Syria — The whole province, of which the Jewish country was only a small part.

And demoniacs — Men possessed with devils: and lunatics, and paralytics - Men ill of the palsy, whose cases were of all others most deplorable and most helpless.

Verse 25

[25] And there followed him great multitudes of people from Galilee, and from Decapolis, and from Jerusalem, and from Judaea, and from beyond Jordan.

Decapolis — A tract of land on the east side of the sea of Galilee, in which were ten cities near each other.

── John WesleyExplanatory Notes on Matthew


Chapter 4. Triumph over Temptation

Got by the Lord
Get for the Lord

I. Temptation from the Devil

  1. Stones Become Bread
  2. Thrown Down from the Pinnacle of the Temple
  3. Seduction of Worship

II. Jesus Begins His Ministry

  1. John Put in Prison
  2. A Great Light Dawns
  3. Urge Men to Repent

III. Calling of the First four Disciples

  1. Casting a Net into the Sea
  2. Mending Nets in a Boat
  3. Follow Jesus
── Chih-Hsin ChangAn Outline of The New Testament
The Temptation Of Jesus (4:1-11)
1. One of the blessings of having Jesus as our Savior is His ability to
   comfort and aid those who  are tempted...
   a. This is because He too was tempted - He 2:18
   b. He is sympathetic, and can provide mercy and grace to help in
      time of need - He 4:14-16
2. One of His greatest periods of temptation was at the beginning of
   His public ministry...
   a. Immediately following His baptism by John - Mt 3:13-17
   b. Just prior to starting His preaching ministry - Mt 4:12-17
3. Studying "The Temptation Of Jesus" can be fruitful for several
   a. It reminds us that Jesus can understand our own temptations
   b. It reveals how we can be more successful in overcoming temptation
[With that in mind and using Mt 4:1-11 as our basic text, let's begin
      1. Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness - Mt 4:1
         a. The same Spirit which descended upon Him in bodily form as
            dove - Mt 3:16; Lk 3:22
         b. It was likely the wilderness of Judea, a desolate place
      2. To be tempted by the devil - Mt 4:1
         a. It appears that this challenge was initiated by the Spirit
         b. For it was the Spirit who led Jesus to the wilderness for
            this purpose
      3. Where Jesus fasted and was tempted for forty days - Mt 4:2
         a. His fasting is reminiscent of Moses and Elijah - Exo 34:28;
            1 Ki 19:8
         b. Luke reveals that temptations occurred over the period of
            forty days - Lk 4:2
         c. Mark mentions wild beasts - Mk 1:13
      -- Thus it was after forty days of temptation that we find Satan
         approaching Jesus for a "climax" involving three particular
      1. The first temptation - Mt 4:3-4
         a. Satan's appeal to the lust of the flesh
            1) Having fasted for forty days, Jesus was naturally hungry
            2) Challenging Jesus' identity, Satan appeals to His
               fleshly hunger: "command that these stones become bread"
         b. Jesus responds with Scripture
            1) Quoting Deu 8:3, "Man shall not live by bread alone..."
            2) There is more to life than just fulfilling physical 
               desires; man is dependent upon the Word of God to truly
      2. The second temptation - Mt 4:5-7
         a.  Satan appeals to the pride of life
            1) Again challenging Jesus' identity, Satan sets Jesus on
               the pinnacle of the temple, tells Him to "throw Yourself
            2) Quoting scriptures himself, using Psa 91:11,12
         b. Jesus responds with Scripture
            1) Deu 6:16, "You shall not tempt the LORD your God"
            2) While the passage Satan quoted is true, it would be an
               abuse of it to purposely test God
      2. The third temptation - Mt 4:8-10
         a. Satan appeals to the lust of the eyes
            1) Taking Jesus to high mountain and showing Him the 
               kingdoms of the world
            2) Offering to give Jesus all the kingdoms if He will 
               worship Satan
         b. Jesus responds with Scripture
            1) Deu 6:13, "You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him
               only you shall serve"
            2) Though offered a shortcut to receiving power over the
               nations, Jesus does not take the easy path - cf. Re 2:
               26-27; 3:21
      1. Angels came and ministered to Jesus - Mt 3:11
         a. Exactly what they did is not mentioned
         b. Perhaps they provided bodily nourishment (Hendricksen)
      2. This would not be the last time Satan would seek to tempt 
         Jesus - cf. Lk 4:13; Mt 16:21-23
[With forty days of overcoming temptation behind Him, especially the
temptation of taking a short cut to His rule as the Messiah, Jesus was
now prepared to begin His public ministry.
What observations might one make regarding "The Temptation Of Jesus"?
Here are a few...]
      1. Jesus was tempted by the devil, and so are we - 1 Pe 5:8-9
      2. The devil now directs his attention towards the disciples of
         Christ - Re 12:17
      -- We should not treat him lightly, for the conflict is real! 
         - Ep 6:12
      1. The lust of the flesh - e.g., immorality, especially when 
      2. The lust of the eyes - e.g., materialism, especially when 
      3. The pride of life - e.g., pride and arrogance, especially when
      -- These we must overcome, if we wish to have the love of the 
         Father - 1 Jn 2:15-16
      1. Jesus appealed to the Word of God, and so can we - cf. Ep 6:17
      2. Jesus had faith in the plan of God (victory through 
         suffering), we need a similar shield of faith - Ep 6:16; cf.
         He 10:35-39
      3. Jesus undoubtedly prayed, for He taught us to use prayer in
         overcoming temptation - Mt 26:41
      -- The Word of God, faith, and prayer...against these the devil
         has no chance!
      1. Jesus was administered to by angels, angels will carry us home
         - cf. Lk 16:22
      2. Jesus received wonderful blessings when He ultimately overcame
         and ascended to heaven; He has promised similar blessings for
         us - cf. Re 2:10,26-27; 3:21
      1. Material sustenance alone cannot truly satisfy, we need the
         spiritual sustenance from God's Word
      2. While we are to trust in the Lord, we should not foolishly
         tempt Him
      3. Scripture can easily be abused, as well as used - 2 Pe 3:16
      4. The way to glory is not quick and easy, but long and hard 
         - Ac 14:22; Ro 2:7
1. But perhaps the greatest lesson to glean from "The Temptation Of
   Jesus" is that we have a Savior who in all things was made like
   a. That He might be our merciful and faithful High Priest - He 2:17
   b. That having suffered, being tempted, He can aid us who are
      tempted - He 2:18
   c. That He might be sympathetic, providing mercy and grace to help
      in time of need - He 4:15-16
2. Are you burdened with temptations?
   a. Look to Jesus as your example in learning how to overcome
      temptation in your life!
   b. Look to Jesus as your High Priest when you need to approach God
      in prayer and receive mercy and grace for those times when you
      succumbed to temptation!
As in all things, look to Jesus, as the writer to Hebrews exhorts us...
   "looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who 
   for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising
   the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of
   For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against
   Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls."
                                   - He 12:2-3
The Preaching Ministry Of Jesus (4:12-17)
1. In Mt 4:12-17, we read of Jesus' public ministry in Galilee...
   a. Which followed the imprisonment of John the Baptist - Mt 4:12
   b. Which began at Capernaum, on the edge of the Sea of Galilee 
      - Mt 4:13
   c. Which fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah - Mt 4:14-16; Isa 9:1,2
2. His public ministry involved "preaching"...
   a. "From that time Jesus began to preach..." - Mt 4:17
   b. Compare also Mt 4:23, "Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in
      their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom..."
3. The word "preach" (Gr., kerux) means "to herald, to proclaim"...
   a. But what was the message Jesus was proclaiming?
   b. Is it a message that should be proclaimed today?
[In this study our focus will be on Mt 4:17, as we seek to understand
the message proclaimed by Jesus during His public ministry.  From this
verse we learn first that...]
      1. Just as John the Baptist did - Mt 3:2
      2. As Jesus would say later:  "For I did not come to call the 
         righteous, but sinners, to repentance." - Mt 9:13
      1. Many people have misconceptions concerning repentance
         a. E.g., that repentance is "sorrow"
            1) But repentance is an outcome of sorrow - cf. 2 Co 7:9-10
            2) Sorrow leads to repentance; sorrow itself is not
         b. E.g., that repentance is "a changed life"
            1) Thinking that repentance is a converted life
            2) But repentance and conversion are two separate things 
               - cf. Ac 3:19
               a) Peter says "Repent therefore and be converted"
               b) If repentance means the same as conversion, then 
                  Peter was redundant
      2. W. E. Vine defines "repentance" as:
         a. A "change of mind"
         b. That which "involves both a turning from sin and a turning
            to God"
      3. Repentance is thus "a change of mind" in which we DECIDE to
         "turn from sin and turn to God"
         a. Which is preceded by sorrow
         b. And followed by a changed life
      -- Jesus was therefore calling upon people to change their minds
         regarding sin, because of what He taught about the kingdom
         (more on that shortly)
      1. Most certainly!
         a. Repentance is to be preached in Jesus' name to all nations
            - Lk 24:46-47
         b. God now calls men everywhere to repent - Ac 17:30
         c. Thus Paul preached to both Jews and Gentiles that they 
            should repent - Ac 26:20
      2. Wherever there is sin, the message of repentance needs to be
         a. People need to be told to "change their minds" (repent)
         b. They need "turn to God, and do works befitting repentance"
            - cf. Ac 26:20; Mt 3:8
      -- Any gospel preaching that does not include a clarion call to
         repent is not the true gospel!
[In calling people to repent, Jesus proclaimed why they needed to 
change their minds and turn from sin to God: "for the kingdom of heaven
is at hand".  This leads to our next point...]
      1. Just as it was with John the Baptist - Mt 3:2
      2. It was the focus of His itinerant ministry - Mt 4:23
         a. The theme of His Sermon on the Mount - Mt 5:3,10,19-20; 
            6:33; 7:21
         b. The theme of many of His parables - e.g., Mt 13:24,31,33,
      3. It was the theme of the Limited Commission - Mt 10:7
      -- During this time, the kingdom of heaven was "at hand" (drawing
      1. It is the same thing as "the kingdom of God"
         a. Some try to make a distinction (e.g., Scofield Reference 
         b. But a quick comparison of the gospels indicate the terms
            refer to the same thing
            1) Cf. Mt 4:17 with Mk 1:14-15
            2) Cf. Mt 5:3 with Lk 6:20
            3) Cf. Mt 13:31 with Mk 4:30-31
         c. Matthew used the expression "kingdom of heaven" almost 
            exclusively, while the other gospel writers used the phrase
            "kingdom of God"
         d. It may be that since Matthew wrote his gospel to the Jews,
            he chose to use the phrase "kingdom of heaven"...
            1) Because of the Jews' reluctance to use the name of God
               (out of reverence)
            2) Because of the Jews' misconception of the coming kingdom
               a) Many anticipated a physical kingdom
               b) The expression "heaven" (literally, "heavens") would
                  emphasize a spiritual kingdom
      2. The "kingdom of heaven" involves four inter-related concepts
         a. God's kingship, rule, or recognized sovereignty
            1) The term "kingdom" as used by the Jews often stressed
               the abstract idea of rule or dominion, not a 
               geographical area surrounded by physical boundaries
            2) It is used this way by Jesus in Mt 6:10 - "Your KINGDOM
               come; Your WILL  be done..." (note the connection 
               between kingdom and will)
               -- Thus, the "kingdom of heaven" would involve the rule
                  of heaven in the hearts of men
         b. This rule of heaven is spiritual in nature
            1) It is not a physical kingdom - cf. Jn 18:36
            2) But one that is spiritual - cf. Ro 14:17
         c. Its visible manifestation today is in the form of the
            Lord's church
            1) For the church is that community of souls in whose
               hearts God is recognized as Sovereign
            2) That the church constitutes the kingdom of God on earth,
               a) How the term "church" and "kingdom" were used
                  interchangeably - Mt 16:18
               b) Comments made to those who were in the church - Co 1:
                  13; 1 Th 2:12
               c) The description of those in the churches of Asia
                  - Re 1:4,6,9
         d. It has a future element as well as a present one
            1) Its future aspect is spoken of by Jesus, Paul, Peter 
               - Mt 25:34; 1 Co 15:50; 2 Ti 4:18; 2 Pe 1:10-11
            2) Peter described the coming of its future state in 2 Pe
      3. Thus the "kingdom of heaven" today is both present and future
         a. In the present sense...
            1) It is found wherever the sovereignty of God is accepted
               in the hearts of men
            2) It is a spiritual kingdom, for God rules in the hearts
               of men
            3) Its outward manifestation today is the Lord's church
            4) This rule or kingdom of God was "inaugurated" on the Day
               of Pentecost (Ac 2)
         b. In the future sense...
            1) The rule or kingdom of God will be "culminated" with the
               coming of the Lord
            2) It will involve that "news heaven and a new earth in 
               which righteousness dwells", described by Peter and John
               - 2 Pe 3; Re 21-22
            3) It will be experienced only by those in the church who
               are submitting to God's will today! - cf. Mt 7:21-23;
               2 Pe 3:13-14
      1. Most certainly!
         a. Philip "preached the things concerning the kingdom of God"
            - Ac 8:12
         b. The apostle Paul in his preaching and teaching:
            1) Spoke of the challenges in entering the kingdom in the
               future sense - Ac 14:22
            2) Reasoned and persuaded with people concerning the 
               kingdom - Ac 19:8
            3) Had gone among the Ephesians, "preaching the kingdom of
               God" - Ac 20:25
            4) Solemnly testified of the kingdom of God to the Jews in
               Rome - Ac 28:23
         c. In his epistles, Paul wrote of:
            1) The nature of the kingdom - Ro 14:17
            2) Those who will not inherit the kingdom - 1 Co 6:9-10;
               Ga 5:21; Ep 5:5
            3) Jesus giving the kingdom to God when He returns - 1 Co
            4) How flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom - 1 Co
            5) How we are now in the kingdom - Co 1:13
            6) His companions as fellow workers for the kingdom - Co 4:
            7) How we might be counted worthy of the kingdom - 2 Th 1:5
            8) God calling us into His kingdom and glory - 2 Th 2:12
            9) Jesus judging us at His appearing and His kingdom - 2 Ti
           10) The Lord preserving him for His heavenly kingdom - 2 Ti
         d. The Hebrew writer referred to our receiving a kingdom which
            can't be shaken - He 12:28
         e. James described the faithful poor as "heirs of the kingdom"
            - Ja 2:5
         f. Peter wrote of how we might have an abundant entrance into
            the everlasting kingdom of our Lord - 2 Pe 1:10-11
         g. John described himself as a brother and companion in the
            kingdom of Jesus Christ - Re 1:9
      2. There is a slight difference in our message, however...
         a. John the Baptist, Jesus, His disciples in the Limited 
            Commission...all proclaimed the kingdom "at hand" (drawing
            1) For the rule of God as foretold by the prophets was 
               about to be manifested - cf. Mk 1:14-15
            2) During Jesus' earthly ministry that kingdom (reign) was
               yet future
            -- That was the "good news" (gospel) of the kingdom then:
               it was near!
         b. However, after the ascension of Christ, the preaching of
            the kingdom proclaimed it both present and future
            1) The rule of God is now being fully manifested in the
               person of Jesus Christ - cf. Mt 28:18; Ep 1:20-22; 1 Pe
            2) Those who "gladly receive" the message can be added by
               the Lord Himself to His church or kingdom (i.e., the 
               community of believers who submit to His authority) 
               - cf. Ac 2:36-41,47; Co 1:13; Re 1:9
            3) Those who persevere to the end can inherit the heavenly
               and everlasting kingdom of our Lord - Ac 14:22; 2 Pe 1:
            -- This is the "good news" (gospel) of the kingdom now:  it
               is both now and coming!
1. In "The Preaching Ministry Of Jesus", two themes permeated His
   a. The need to repent
   b. For the kingdom of heaven was at hand
2. As we fulfill the Great Commission today (Mt 28:18-20), our themes
   should be similar...
   a. The kingdom of heaven has come and is coming (implied in "All
      authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.")
   b. The need to repent (implied in "Make disciples of all the
If you desire to experience the bliss of the everlasting kingdom of our
Lord and Savior, you must do the Father's Will (cf. Mt 7:21-23) and be
in the kingdom of His dear Son today (cf. Co 1:13).
Have you submitted to the gospel of the kingdom as proclaimed by our
Lord's apostles?


The Discipling Ministry Of Jesus (4:18-22)
1. We saw where the public ministry of Jesus involved "preaching"...
   a. Proclaiming the need to repent, for the kingdom of heaven was at
      hand - Mt 4:17
   b. Taking this message to synagogues throughout the land - Mt 4:23
2. His ministry was not limited to preaching; it also involved
   a. In which He called select individuals to follow Him
   b. Creating His own group of "disciples"
      1) Just as John had his disciples - Mt 9:14
      2) Even the Pharisees had their disciples - Mt 22:15-16
3. We read of Jesus calling His first disciples in our text...
   a. The call of Peter and Andrew - Mt 4:18-20
   b. The call of James and John - Mt 4:21-22
4. Throughout His public ministry...
   a. Jesus would call others to become His disciples - cf. Mt 9:9
   b. Jesus would spend much time with His disciples
   c. Jesus would end His time on earth with a command for them to make
      more disciples - Mt 28:19-20
[Such an important subject to our Lord naturally raises some questions.
For example...]
      1. The word "disciple" literally means a learner
      2. According to Vine's Expository Dictionary Of New Testament
         Words, it denotes "one who follows another's teaching"
      3. But a disciple was not only a learner, he was also an adherent
      4. For this reason disciples were spoken of as imitators of their
      -- When Jesus told Peter, Andrew, James, and John to "Follow Me"
         (Mt 4:19), it meant more than to just physically follow Him!
      1. Stated by Jesus on this occasion:  "I will make you fishers of
         a. Just as they had worked in going after fish, now they would
            be going after men!
         b. As indicated in the Great Commission, they would be making
            more disciples - Mt 28:19
      2. Stated by Jesus on another occasion:  to be like their teacher
         a. Those perfectly trained will be like their teacher - Lk 6:
         b. Just as Christ sought to save men and make them disciples,
            so His disciples were to seek and save the lost
[A disciple of Jesus, then, is one who desires to imitate Jesus.  Since
He was concerned for the lost, His disciples would be also!  Another
      1. This command He gave to His future disciples - Mt 4:19; 9:9
         a. They would spend three years following Jesus around 
         b. During that time they would listen to what He said, observe
            what He did
         c. Eventually they would be told to carry on His work - Mt 28:
         d. Their success was related to this time spent with Jesus 
            - cf. Ac 4:13
      2. To be a disciple of Jesus, then, requires that one:
         a. Follow Him
         b. Spend time with Him
         c. Carry on His work
      -- But how can we do this when He is no longer with us on earth?
      1. This He said to those who believed in Him - Jn 8:31
         a. By learning and observing what He taught, they would truly
            be His disciples
         b. As Jesus would say later, future disciples would be made as
            they were taught "to observe all things that I have
            commanded you" - Mt 28:20
         c. It would begin with baptism, for He had just commanded His
            disciples to make disciples by baptizing them - Mt 28:19;
            cf. Mk 16:16; Ac 2:38
      2. To be a disciple of Jesus, then, requires that one:
         a. Be baptized (having repented and confessed one's faith in
         b. Follow Jesus by doing what He taught His first disciples
            (the apostles)
      -- By continuing steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine (i.e., 
         their gospels and epistles), we can be Jesus' disciples today!
         - cf. Ac 2:41-42
[To follow Jesus by abiding in His word implies some degree of effort
and cost.  This leads to our next question...]
      1. They left their business and family - Mt 4:20-22
      2. As Peter would say later:  "we have left all and followed You"
         - Mt 19:27
      1. That He must come before family - Mt 10:37; Lk 9:59-62; 14:
      2. That one must be willing to suffer hardship - Mt 10:38; Lk 9:
         57-58; 14:27
      3. Simply put, to forsake all to follow Him - Lk 14:33
      1. To seek first the kingdom of God - Mt 6:33
      2. As illustrated in The Parable Of The Great Supper, family and
         business cannot come before accepting the call of the gospel!
         - Lk 14:15-24
1. In calling people to repent, Jesus was also calling people to become
   His disciples...
   a. But like John the Baptist before Him, Jesus expected that people
      "bear fruits worthy of repentance" - cf. Mt 3:8
   b. As He would say later, "By this My Father is glorified, that you
      bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples." - Jn 15:8
2. For those willing to accept His call, along with the cost, there is
   promise of great blessings...
   a. As Jesus told Peter - Mk 10:28-30
   b. As Paul would encourage the Christians at Corinth - 1 Co 15:58
3. Have we accepted the call and responsibility of discipleship, or do
   we just "go to church"?
   a. Which comes first, our families, our businesses, or Jesus Christ
      and His kingdom?
   b. Are we busy building our lives, enjoying our retirement, while
      the Lord's church suffers?
   c. Do we spend more time on fishing and other forms of recreation,
      than we do on fishing for men?
   -- How we answer such questions reveals much as to whether we are
      truly the disciples of Jesus!
May we all be open to the call of Jesus:
           "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men."


The Itinerant Ministry Of Jesus (4:23-25)
1. Jesus started His public ministry by moving to Capernaum - Mt 4:
   a. A city on the northwestern shore of the Sea of Galilee
   b. A fulfillment of the prophecy in Isa 9:1-2
   c. From which He began to preach His message of the kingdom
2. But Jesus' work was not what you might call a "located ministry"...
   a. He did not stay in one place
   b. Where people might easily come to see and hear Him
3. His ministry was an "itinerant ministry"...
   a. He traveled from place to place
   b. If people wanted to hear Him more than once, they had to follow
[In our text, Mt 4:23-25, we find a summary of "The Itinerant Ministry
Of Jesus."  In this study, let's begin by taking a look at...]
      1. He "went about all Galilee" - Mt 4:23
      2. He went about "teaching in their synagogues" - Mt 4:23
      3. Luke records an example: in the synagogue at Nazareth - Lk 4:
      4. But as mentioned by both Mark and Luke, Jesus felt compelled
         to keep moving - Mk 1:35-39; Lk 4:42-44
      1. His preaching involved "good news" about the kingdom - Mt 4:
         23; cf. Mk 1:14
      2. As recorded by Mark, this "good news" included the following:
         a. "The time is fulfilled" - the time foretold by the
             prophets, cf. Dan 2:44
         b. "The kingdom of God is at hand" - the kingdom foretold by
            the prophets, cf. Dan 2:44; Lk 1:32-33
      1. He healed people afflicted with various diseases and torments
         - Mt 4:23-24
      2. Including the demon-possessed, epileptics, and paralytics 
         - Mt 4:24
      3. Both Mark and Luke provide more detail at this point in their
         a. Casting out an unclean spirit - Mk 1:21-28; Lk 4:31-37
         b. Healing Peter's mother-in-law - Mk 1:29-30; Lk 4:38-39
         c. Healing many after a Sabbath sunset - Mk 1:32-34; Lk 4:
         -- Matthew records these events after The Sermon On The Mount
            in his gospel
      1. Throughout all Syria, the region to the north of Galilee 
         - Mt 4:24
      2. Evidently throughout Decapolis, Judea, and beyond the Jordan,
         regions to the south and east - Mt 4:25
      3. The healing of a leper forced him to stay in deserted places 
         - Mk 1:45
      1. From Galilee and regions all around - Mt 4:25
      2. Mark says they came to Him from every direction - Mk 1:45
      3. They came to hear Him, and to be healed by Him - Lk 5:15
      1. Jesus' concern was not just for those in his town of Capernaum
         a. Compelled to preach the gospel in other cities, He went
            about "all Galilee"
         b. He later sent His disciples to preach throughout all the
            cities of Israel
         c. He finally commissioned to them to preach to every person,
            making disciples "of all the nations" - Mk 16:16; Mt 28:19
      2. It has been said, "No one has the right to hear the gospel
         twice, before everyone has heard it once"
         a. This statement reflects a sentiment worth remembering
         b. Once the gospel has been shared, we are not under 
            obligation to repeat it again and again to one not 
         c. If those who hear are not interested, they have judged 
            themselves unworthy of eternal life - e.g., Ac 13:44-47
         d. As long as there are souls who have not heard, we do not
            always have the luxury of "spoon-feeding" the spiritually
            indifferent in an attempt to reach them!
      3. Similarly, churches may not always have the luxury to hold on
         to their evangelists
         a. Some are like the people who tried to keep Jesus from
            leaving them - Lk 4:42
         b. But having received the word, they need to appreciate the
            need for others to hear - Lk 4:43
         c. Especially today, when we have Bibles to teach us, we can
            more liberal with letting evangelists do their work of 
            evangelizing! - cf. Ro 10:14-15
      1. Certainly they were an expression of Jesus' compassion 
         - Mt 14:14; 20:29-34
      2. Such miracles were also confirmation of prophecy - Mt 8:16-17
         a. They were recorded that we might believe - Jn 20:30-31
         b. They were intended to confirm who Jesus was - cf. Jn 5:36
      3. In a similar way, the miracles done by His followers was for
         the purpose of confirming their message as being from God 
         - cf. Mk 16:19-20; He 2:3-4
         a. Their purpose was not to make Christians "healthy and 
         b. Their purpose was not for personal benefit; e.g., Paul did
            not heal Timothy of his stomach ailments and frequent 
            infirmities, prescribing medicinal treatment instead
            - 1 Ti 5:23
      -- The primary purpose of such miracles, as always, was to 
         confirm God's messengers; in this case, confirming Jesus to be
         the Son of God! - cf. Ac 2:22
      1. Jesus' reputation quickly spread throughout the region
      2. Even His enemies had to admit His miracles were real - Jn 11:
      3. Such was true with the miracles performed by the apostles 
         - Ac 4:14-16
      4. If one could truly heal today as Jesus and His apostles did...
         a. It would be on every TV network
         b. None would deny it, especially Christians who question the
            validity of what is often claimed to be miraculous today!
      -- The more you study the miracles of the Bible, the easier it is
         see that those who claim to do miracles today are either 
         sincerely mistaken or deliberate deceivers!
      1. The multitudes who wanted to hear and see Jesus had to follow
         Him where He went
         a. It required leaving their homes, probably at great expense
         b. It was probably very inconvenient, especially when sick and
      2. Following Jesus today requires some effort also!
         a. Time and energy must be expended to learn and grow in the
            teachings of Christ
         b. It may not always be convenient to utilize opportunities to
            learn more about Jesus
      -- The next time you stay home because of some physical
         inconvenience, think of those souls who followed Jesus on His
         itinerant travels!
1. Many Christians have often thought how wonderful it must have been
   to see Jesus on earth during His public ministry...
   a. To see the miracles, to witness the healings
   b. To hear His sermons proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom
   b. To sit at His feet, listening to His gracious words of 
2. In reality, it may not have been as easy as one might think...
   a. You would have had to leave home for an extended period of time
   b. Contending with the multitudes, it might have difficult to even
      get close to Jesus
   -- I wonder if many Christians today would have made the effort!
3. As we think of "The Itinerant Ministry Of Jesus", I hope we will
   a. The importance of spreading the gospel of the kingdom today
   b. The compassion our Lord had for the sick and oppressed
   c. The effort we should be willing to make to follow the Lord
4. Perhaps most importantly, to realize...
   a. That once you have heard the gospel of the kingdom, no one is
      obligated to repeat it to you again and again
   b. That having heard it once, you may never have the opportunity to
      hear it again!
It is _your_ responsibility to heed the call to repent and accept the
good news concerning the Lord Jesus Christ.  Have you?


--《Executable Outlines