The Gracious Calling Of Matthew
There are many examples of irresistible grace in God’s Word. Perhaps most plain is the calling of the disciple Matthew, also known as Levi the tax collector. The apostle records his own conversion in his Gospel: “As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, ‘Follow me.’ And he rose and followed him” .
Consideration of this verse makes clear the basic teaching of irresistible grace. The Lord Jesus had just returned to Capernaum from His missionary visit to the region of the Gadarenes. Capernaum had become His Galilean headquarters, and many of His most spectacular miracles already had occurred there. Seeing Matthew at his tax collector’s booth, Jesus went to him and called, “Follow me.” At these words, the tax collector immediately was transformed into a disciple. It is a striking illustration of God’s sovereignty in salvation.
In short, there was nothing in Matthew to explain his sudden willingness to believe and follow Jesus. Instead, the answer is seen in the irresistible grace of God, as the Holy Spirit applied Jesus’ call with sovereign and divine power.
Who Was Matthew The Tax Collector
We are first introduced to Matthew in the ninth chapter of the book bearing his name. There he is identified as sitting at the tax booth. In the other gospel accounts he is listed as Levi, the son of Alphaeus. This means that Levi is a Jew. This makes his sitting at the tax booth all the more despicable.
Nobody likes paying taxes, but it was even worse in first century Capernaum. There were two types of tax collectors. The first type was the general tax collectorsthey collected things like property tax, income tax, and poll tax. These were a fixed rate and usually collected by Romans. The second type of tax collector was the one who would tax everything. The way these tax collectors made their money was in whatever they could squeeze out of the people. Theyd give what was due to Rome and then pocket the rest. The more corrupt they were, the more money they could make. Rome didnt care what kind of tax these locals charged so long as they got their cut.
Matthew was the second type of tax collector. Now some of these types of tax collectors would be a chief tax collector theyd hire others to do their dirty biding. (If youve heard of Zacchaeus, he was one of these tax collectors. But not Matthew. Matthew was one of the little guys who did his own thingwho set up his own lemonade stand and milked his own people out of their hard-earned dollars.
The answer for one like Matthew was simple. Do better.
But then Matthew met Jesus
The Healing Of A Paralytic
1 And getting into a boat he crossed over and came to his own city. 2 And behold, they brought to him a paralytic, lying on his bed and when Jesus saw their faith he said to the paralytic, “Take heart, my son your sins are forgiven.” 3 And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, “This man is blaspheming.” 4 But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, “Why do you think evil in your hearts? 5 For which is easier, to say, `Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, `Rise and walk’? 6 But that you may know that the Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins” – he then said to the paralytic – “Rise, take up your bed and go home.” 7 And he rose and went home. 8 When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.
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The Greatest In The Kingdom
1 At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 2 And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them, 3 and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Whoever humbles himself like this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5 “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me 6 but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened round his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.7 “Woe to the world for temptations to sin! For it is necessary that temptations come, but woe to the man by whom the temptation comes! 8 And if your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away it is better for you to enter life maimed or lame than with two hands or two feet to be thrown into the eternal fire. 9 And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and throw it away it is better for you to enter life with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into the hell of fire. 10 “See that you do not despise one of these little ones for I tell you that in heaven their angels always behold the face of my Father who is in heaven.
The Sin Against The Holy Spirit
31 Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.32 And whoever says a word against the Son of man will be forgiven but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.
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The Multiplication Of The Loaves And Fish
13 Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a lonely place apart. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14 As he went ashore he saw a great throng and he had compassion on them, and healed their sick. 15 When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a lonely place, and the day is now over send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” 16 Jesus said, “They need not go away you give them something to eat.” 17 They said to him, “We have only five loaves here and two fish.” 18 And he said, “Bring them here to me.” 19 Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass and taking the five loaves and the two fish he looked up to heaven, and blessed, and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over. 21 And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.
King James Bible Dictionary
Gift of God, a common Jewish name after the Exile. He was the son of Alphaeus, and was a publican or tax-gatherer at Capernaum. On one occasion Jesus, coming up from the side of the lake, passed the custom-house where Matthew was seated, and said to him, “Follow me.” Matthew arose and followed him, and became his disciple . Formerly the name by which he was known was Levi he now changed it, possibly in grateful memory of his call, to Matthew. The same day on which Jesus called him he made a “great feast” , a farewell feast, to which he invited Jesus and his disciples, and probably also many of old associates. He was afterwards selected as one of the twelve . His name does not occur again in the Gospel history except in the lists of the apostles. The last notice of him is in Acts 1:13. The time and manner of his death are unknown.
. but he must have lived many years as an apostle, since he was the author of the Gospel of Matthew which was written at least twenty years later. There is reason to believe that he remained for fifteen years at Jerusalem, after which he went as missionary to the Persians, Parthians and Medes. There is a legend that he died a martyr in Ethiopia.
The author of this book was beyond a doubt the Matthew, an apostle of our Lord, whose name it bears. He wrote the Gospel of Christ according to his own plans and aims, and from his own point of view, as did also the other “evangelists.”
The book is fitly divided into these four parts-
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Typology: Jesus As The New Israel
In fact, a closer reading of Matthews Gospel provides a better solution. Christians in the West tend to look to prophecy for its apologetic value. Knowing something ahead of time is proof of the messages divine origin. Yet for Matthew, the fulfillment of Scripture is less about apologetics and more about Gods sovereign purposes. The establishment of patterns of fulfillment confirms that all of human history is heading toward its goal and culmination in Christ.
A Jesus-Israel typology is also evident in Matthews portrayal of Jesus as the Servant of the Lord. The term Servant appears repeatedly in Isaiah 40-55. Sometimes the Servant is identified with the nation Israel and sometimes as an individual who brings salvation to the nation . As Gods Servant, Israel was meant to be a light of revelation to the nations, revealing Gods glory . But Israel turned inward and failed to fulfill their calling. Jesus, by contrast, remains faithful to his mission and shows himself to be the true Servant of the Lord. Matthews summary of Jesus ministry in 12:15-21 cites Isaiah 42:1-4, Here is my servant whom I have chosen, the one I love, in whom I delight I will put my Spirit on him In his name the nations will put their hope. In the power of the Holy Spirit, Jesus fulfills the role of eschatological Israel.
What God Said When Jesus Was Baptized
In all three gospels, the Holy Spirit is depicted as descending upon Jesus immediately after his baptism accompanied by a voice from Heaven, but the accounts of Luke and Mark record the voice as addressing Jesus by saying You are my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased, while in Matthew the voice states This is my
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The Genealogy Of Jesus The Messiah
1 This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah the son of David, the son of Abraham:
2 Abraham was the father of Isaac,
Isaac the father of Jacob,
Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,
3 Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar,
Perez the father of Hezron,
Hezron the father of Ram,
4 Ram the father of Amminadab,
Amminadab the father of Nahshon,
Nahshon the father of Salmon,
5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab,
Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth,
Obed the father of Jesse,
6 and Jesse the father of King David.
David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriahs wife,
7 Solomon the father of Rehoboam,
Rehoboam the father of Abijah,
Abijah the father of Asa,
8 Asa the father of Jehoshaphat,
Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram,
Jehoram the father of Uzziah,
9 Uzziah the father of Jotham,
Jotham the father of Ahaz,
Ahaz the father of Hezekiah,
10 Hezekiah the father of Manasseh,
Manasseh the father of Amon,
Amon the father of Josiah,
11 and Josiah the father of Jeconiah and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon.
12 After the exile to Babylon:
Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel,
Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel,
13 Zerubbabel the father of Abihud,
Abihud the father of Eliakim,
Eliakim the father of Azor,
14 Azor the father of Zadok,
Zadok the father of Akim,
Akim the father of Elihud,
15 Elihud the father of Eleazar,
Eleazar the father of Matthan,
Matthan the father of Jacob,
The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter
The beliefs within with regard to saints are similar but not quite the same as the Protestant tradition. In the New Testament, saints are all those who have entered into the Christian covenant of baptism. The qualification “latter-day” refers to the doctrine that members are living in the latter days before the , and is used to distinguish the members of the church, which considers itself the restoration of the ancient Christian church. Members are therefore often referred to as “” or “LDS”, and among themselves as “saints”.
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The Rest Of The New Testament
After the four Gospels, the book of Acts records the events following the Ascension of the Savior. Most scholars agree that Luke wrote the Acts of the Apostles. Nearly all the rest of the books in the New Testament are letters, or epistles. Paul wrote most of these, but also included are letters written by James, Peter, John, and Jude. The book of Revelation, written by John, concludes the collection we now call the New Testament.
The Symbol For The Gospel Of Matthew Is A Winged Man
In the second century, St. Irenaeus famously associated symbols from Ezekiel 1:1-21 and Revelation 4:6-8 with each of the four gospels. He suggested that the winged man represented Matthew: This, then, is the Gospel of His humanity for which reason it is, too, that the character of a humble and meek man is kept up through the whole Gospel .
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Misunderstood Outsider Or Sick Sinner
In general, I find the unique way that The Chosen was able to tie together and explain so much of what we know about Matthew from the Bible to be very satisfying. But there is one detail about Matthews character that The Chosen fails to account for. When the Pharisees confront Jesus about his friendship with Matthew and the other tax collectors, Jesus response isnt that the tax collectors are just lonely and misunderstood. He agrees with the Pharisees diagnosis: Matthew and his friends are indeed sick sinners. Showing love and acceptance is part of what Dr. Jesus prescribes in order to heal Matthew, but that isnt the final cure. Ultimately Jesus has come to callsinners to repentance. Just like though, the main problem that Matthew struggles with isnt sin its rejection. And therefore the main solution that The Chosen offers for his struggle isnt heart transformation and forgiveness its acceptance and inclusion.
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Tombs And Statues Gallery
This room contains finds from the excavations in Hierapolis and Laodiceia, including sarcophagi, statues, gravestones, pedestals, pillars and inscriptions. Among these artifacts there are statues of , , , , , and Trion which, although executed by the Romans, were inspired by the Hellenistic tradition. The representations of local customs on family tombs are particularly interesting.
The most beautiful examples of baked earth sarcophagi are specific to this area. One of the most valuable works of art in this room is the sarcophagus belonging to a certain Arhom, of the ‘Sidemare’ type. On it is an inscription to Maximilian, and it is the finest work to emerge from the ancient towns of Lahdi and Laodicia.
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Who Was Matthew In The Bible
Virtually everything we really know about Matthew comes directly from the gospels. Hes mentioned in all three Synoptic Gospels , and listed among the disciples in Acts. But thats it. Including parallel passages, there are just seven mentions of him in the entire Bible. Only one gives us any substantial details about him.
The Parable Of The Sower
1 That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. 2 And great crowds gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat there and the whole crowd stood on the beach. 3 And he told them many things in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. 5 Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they had not much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, 6 but when the sun rose they were scorched and since they had no root they withered away. 7 Other seeds fell upon thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. 8 Other seeds fell on good soil and brought forth grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. 9 He who has ears, let him hear.”
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From Crooked Sinner To Transformed Saint
Matthew displayed one of the most radically changed lives in the Bible in response to an invitation from Jesus. He did not hesitate he did not look back. He left behind a life of wealth and security for poverty and uncertainty. He abandoned the pleasures of this world for the promise of eternal life.
The remainder of Matthew’s life is uncertain. Tradition says he preached for 15 years in Jerusalem following the death and resurrection of Jesus, then went out on the mission field to other countries.
How Matthew died is disputed. According to Heracleon, the apostle passed away from natural causes. The official “Roman Martyrology” of the Catholic Church suggests that Matthew was martyred in Ethiopia. Foxeâs Book of Martyrs also supports the martyrdom tradition of Matthew, reporting that he was slain with a halberd in the city of Nabadar.