The Book of Matthew ch.1-5
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Matthew was probably written in the late 50s or early 60s A.D. Matthew (also called Levi), the former tax collector who became Jesus’ disciple, is the author. The original audience may have been the church in Antioch of Syria. Its members included Jewish and Gentile Christians.
Matthew tells the story of Jesus of Nazareth, the long-expected Messiah who brought the kingdom of God to earth.
Matthew writes his Gospel to demonstrate that Jesus is the Messiah, that he has the right to the throne of David as Israel’s true King, and that he is the ultimate fulfillment of God’s promise to Abraham that his descendants would be a blessing to all the world (1:1; Gen. 12:1–3). Matthew seeks to encourage Jewish Christians (and all future disciples) to stand strong despite opposition. They should feel secure in the knowledge of their citizenship in God’s kingdom. Matthew shows that Gentiles also can find salvation through Jesus the Messiah.
You can access this content - along with much more - in our free printable Through the Word journal for the book of Matthew.
“Therefore, the LORD himself will give you a sign: See, the virgin will conceive, have a son, and name him Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14).
Isaiah spoke this prophecy over 700 years before the birth of Jesus Christ. Isaiah, the prophet, spoke God’s truth to the people of Israel for several decades, constantly warning of God’s coming judgment and calling upon them to repent. However, he also described how God would one day restore the nation after God’s punishment and purification had been completed.
The story of Christmas, the coming of a son who would bring peace and salvation to a darkened world due to sin, had finally arrived. Immanuel, God with us, became fulfilled being wrapped in swaddling clothes lying in a manger. God’s promise became fulfilled! God is always true to His promises. The angels sang to the shepherds, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace goodwill toward men” (Luke 2:14).
The promise of a son came after 700 years. We learn from this that God’s time is definitely not our time. Fortunately, for us, God knows what’s best for us. The Apostle Peter wrote this about God’s timing: “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance…Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him” (2 Peter 3:9).
So, it’s best for us that God’s thoughts are not our thoughts, and His ways are not our ways. He protects us and shields us from our own self demise. Therefore, God sent his son, his only son into the world to offer salvation to all who believe. God’s timing is everything. Look how God’s timing has affected your life and your family’s life. “For while we were still helpless (weak from sin), at the right time Christ died for the ungodly” (Romans 5:6). Although 700 years after the prophecy, at the right time, a baby was born, which broke the curse of Satan on humankind. God’s timing is everything. Praise Him!
The Hope of Christmas: The Women in Jesus' Family Tree
When they saw the star, they were overwhelmed with joy. Entering the house, they saw the child with Mary, his mother, and falling to their knees, they worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh (2:10-11).
This story of the wise men is an incredible story of man’s search for meaning, man’s greatest longing. What we all need is a Savior, to be saved from ourselves. These men were wise and it was worth every bit of expense and time paid to get on bended knees and show him reverence. They knew this child was more than “king of the Jews.” This child was king of all things!!! They had brought their treasures to honor the child. The journey was well worth it. They found Christ and also found themselves. God always provides a sign for our journey to Him. The question is, are we willing to take the journey as tough as it may appear or not? The wise men were overwhelmed with joy to follow the star. They understood the blessings at the end of the journey. It would be a new beginning of life for them. They knew in this child was the totality of God Almighty. Only God could place a star in the sky to follow.
So much in this story. Have we personally discovered the sign God has placed before us to follow to see the totality of Jesus Christ? Do we live daily on bended knees or are there times when we scoff at the Savior? Do we really have anything to boost about? The Apostle Paul wrote, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless, I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me” (Galatians 2:20).
Last, the wise men brought their treasures to Christ. What do we do with our treasures? Do we present them to Jesus? Look at your checking account and see where you spend your money? Where your treasure is, is where your heart will be also!
Recall these words of the song, “Jesus Paid It all”:
Wise men understand this and find the Christ child and give him all the glory!!
The short answer is “repent!”
I think most of us have an understanding of this word and this message, although I wonder how often we experience it on a soul level.
Listen to how some commentaries describe John the Baptist’s message of repentance.
John the Baptist’s message is very clear, his call to repentance is not a simple apology or acknowledgement of something done wrong, but a resolve to make a change of manner and life.
Sadly, this isn’t a message we hear preached very much these days, although we all need to hear it, as we all have sin in our lives. Repentance is vital and a key indicator of one’s salvation. We can join a church, walk the aisle, believe in God, but unless we repent by saying, “God I am sorry for my sin” we will never truly experience what it means to receive the grace of God. The grace which allows God to change us from the inside out.
Three of their resources I use the most are:
1) Parallel Bible - this lists a verse side by side with multiple translations. It is easy to quickly compare translations and see any differences. I use this often, especially for a word study.
2) Greek & Hebrew - this provides a word by word Greek / Hebrew translation, with links to dive further for each word. Another great resource for a word study. This also provides additional references where the same word has been used in the Bible.
3) Commentaries - these provide scholarly detail and reflection on Scriptures. The variety of authors provide everything from summary explanations to detail theological teachings.
There are many more study tools available on their website. If you visit, I would love to hear about which resource you enjoy using.
The temptation of Jesus. What an example He gives us here. (James 1:4-11)
Our friend Jodie Barrett from Faithfully Following Ministries shares this insight with us today:
We can learn 3 things from Jesus in these scriptures:
As I Journaled this in my Bible today, I really enjoyed the King James Translation of, "Get thee hence, Satan!" 😊
But seriously, I think I don't say this enough. But I'm sayin' it today.
Blessings Soul Friends,
Thank you Jana for all you do. I'm looking over this - not promising I can do it all working with studies at church (Experiencing God) and they asked me to facilitate. I'm praying about it all, but I love what you've done and going to get this week done and see how it goes.
I totally understand Debbie. This isn't intended to overwhelm, just to hopefully motivate and encourage all of us to spend time with God in His Word.
Hi Jana and friends! I'm doing the scripture writing each day and want to start a bible journal art with it some how...Jana, will you be offering traceables of the work you are doing in your bible for this?
Hi Kathy, some of the artwork I will share is available in our shoppe. However, as alot of what I journal is inspired by other artists, I do not offer printables of those journaled pages.
I will include links to those resources which are available.
Thanks for following along.