For Bible Study Nerds

For Bible Study Nerds


Matthew 4:12-17; Jesus Begins to Preach (Theological Commentary)

posted by Mike Nappa

The phrase, “kingdom of heaven” appears only in Matthew’s gospel, but it is used synonymously with “kingdom of God” found elsewhere in Matthew and in the other gospels. One theologian defines this term as meaning, “the spiritual rule of God in the hearts of believers.” While technically accurate, this definition falls short of the immediacy and efficacy with which Jesus used the phrase.

Christ’s teaching on the kingdom added the imperative that it was physically near (or literally, “has drawn near”) because he, God’s Son, had come. It seemed to symbolize both a present, intangible reality (i.e., “rule of God in the hearts of believers”) and also the promise of a future, corporeal actuality (God’s rule on earth) that was beginning to show itself through Christ’s presence.

“The kingdom is the sum of all gifts,” one 20th century scholar said in commentary on this passage, and that rings true. He added, “Though it will come in its complete glory only in the future, it is already beginning to manifest itself in the events connected with Jesus’ ministry…the dawning of the kingdom, the appearance of its first fruits, the combination of thanksgiving for present bliss with the most poignant expectation of glory in the near future—these features run through the whole New Testament.”

 Sunrise - The Kingdom of Heaven Draws Near

Works Cited:

[TTW, 205-6; IB7, 275]

 

ΩΩΩ

About: For Bible Study Nerds™

About: Mike Nappa

Copyright © 2014 to present by Nappaland Communications Inc. All Rights Reserved.



Previous Posts

Matthew 5:33-37; Oaths (Cultural Commentary)
In ancient Israel, an oath was both a ritual act and a binding promise. Oaths were invoked in court cases to (supposedly) ensure that witnesses would tell the truth. They were also given as proof of an unbreakable pledge of loyalty, or as a guarantee that a person would fulfill some obligation be

posted 12:00:11pm Sep. 17, 2014 | read full post »

Matthew 5:33-37; Oaths (Bible Difficulties)
“You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not break your oath, but fulfill to the Lord the vows you have made…’” In case you’re wondering, Jesus wasn't quoting the Old Testament when he said that. At least not exactly. Bible scholars think that this point in Chri

posted 12:00:59pm Sep. 15, 2014 | read full post »

Matthew 5:31-32; Divorce (Symbolism)
Jesus’ literal intolerance for the practice of divorce, as displayed in his Sermon on the Mount, takes on new meaning when viewed through a symbolic lens. Consider: Throughout the New Testament, Christ is presented figuratively as a bridegroom, and all his followers throughout the ages (the

posted 12:00:44pm Sep. 12, 2014 | read full post »

Matthew 5:31-32; Divorce (Bible Difficulties)
It’s hard to overlook the uncomfortable truth that, according to Jesus, a divorced woman is considered an adulterer in God’s eyes—merely by the fact that her husband divorced her. “Whoever divorces his wife,” Christ said, “for any reason except sexual immorality causes her to commit

posted 4:41:43pm Sep. 10, 2014 | read full post »

Matthew 5:31-32; Divorce (Historical Backgrounds)
You may be surprised to discover that Old Testament Law did not codify the practice of divorce. In fact, biblical history indicates that divorce predated the time of Moses. As such, it was acknowledged by the Law (see Deuteronomy 24:1), but not created by it. Divorce in Jewish society was general

posted 12:00:42pm Sep. 08, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.