Matthew introduces us to two potential disciples. One says: “I will follow Jesus if it pays off now.” The other says: “Now is paying off, I’ll follow Jesus later.” The opportunity to decide to follow Jesus is now. One day it will be too late.
Through these miraculous healing, Jesus physically demonstrates that he came to rescue us from our ultimate suffering which is rooted in our sin and our guilt.
Matthew has just quoted Jesus as claiming to have authority from God. Now he turns our attention to how Jesus acts with God’s authority, by performing miracles only God can perform. These miracles confront us with a choice to believe Jesus is who he says he is.
After the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew focuses our attention on the miracles of Jesus. Having shown us that Jesus speaks with the authority of God, Matthew now shows us that Jesus also acts with the authority of God, by performing miracles only God can perform. The miracles confront us with the question: will we believe Jesus is who he says he is?
Matthew 7:12-29 summarizes two great themes we’ve seen in this sermon: 1) You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 2) There is a road that seems right to us, but it leads to destruction.
Ask God for the life He has promised and you will receive it. Seek the good things that He has promised and you will find them. Knock on the door to the kingdom of heaven and it will open to you. These words are powerful because of the difficult battle they represent. Believing and acting on these promises is the central struggle of the Christian life.
In Matthew 7:6, many people understand Jesus to be saying something like: you don’t need to share the gospel with hostile, unworthy people. However, I agree with the minority who understand Jesus to be saying: don’t be the kind of fool who throws away what is beautiful and precious.
The log in your own eye versus the speck in your neighbor’s eye is a powerful image of willfully living a lie. Jesus warns that if you condemn other people for their sins, you are ignoring a fundamental truth about yourself in a way that is almost impossible to imagine.
At first reading, Matthew 6:25-34 seems simple and straightforward: Don’t be anxious. God knows what you need and He will take care of you. The tricky part of this passage is figuring out exactly what we should not do and what we can expect God to do.
Why is the kingdom of heaven so incredibly valuable? In this passage, Jesus gives one of many important reasons: We cannot keep the treasures of this earth, and we cannot lose the treasures in heaven.