QT 12/01/2024 Friday Matthew 11. Jesus' assurance of rest.

QT 12/01/2024 Friday Matthew 11. Jesus' assurance of rest.

QT 12/01/2024 Friday Matthew 11

We saw yesterday that Jesus' AUTHORITY to preach repentance IS RADICAL in many areas and OVERRIDES many things in priority (Matt 10).

In Matt 11, the acknowledgement and acceptance of this Authority and Priority is tested - in the life of John - "When John heard in PRISON what Christ was doing, he sent his disciples to ask him, "Are you the one who was to come, or should we expect someone else?" (Matt 11:2-3).

REFLECTION: Are you surprised that John the Baptist was questioning whether Jesus is the Messiah? Surely John knew the answer?

WASN'T John the one who "trumpeted" in Matt 3:11-12, "I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire"?

Why did John's "fire" in Matt 3:11-12 now seemingly water down to a "Are you the one...?" (Matt 11:2), a small flickering flame?

John was imprisoned (Matt 11:2). Perhaps you might be thinking why the "powerful one" DID NOT come to SAVE him. In fact, John was beheaded and his head brought to the dancer girl (14:11).

What's worse, John's head was subsequently given to the girl's mother (Herodias), but John's disciple took his body for burial (Matt 14:12). John's head was at a different place from his body!

Brothers and sisters at S-Word, would you like such endings for your preaching ministry? Why do such "bad" things happen to God's chosen prophet, servant and messenger?

Matt 11 doesn't answer this directly. But Jesus pointed the enquirers back to Jesus' own works (Matt 11:4-5):-

a. Jesus' works FULFILLED Isa 29:18-19, "In that day the deaf will hear the words of the scroll, and out of gloom and darkness the eyes of the blind will see. Once more the humble will rejoice in the Lord; the needy will rejoice in the Holy One of Israel."

b. Jesus' works FULFILLED Isa 35:5-6, "Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert."

c. Jesus' works FULFILLED Isa 61:1-2a, "The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor".

d. Matthew is pointing his readers back to chapters 1-2 again: the prophets point to Jesus and now in Matt 11 HIS WORKS. So remain steady, DON'T WAIVER!

e. Inspite of his PRESENT predicament of imprisonment, John the Baptist is still "my messenger" (Matt 11:10), quoting Malachi 3:1.

f. Inspite of present difficulties, Jesus affirmed that John the Baptist was the "greatest" (Matt 11:11).

g. It was only because people were not responsive to John the Baptist's preaching (Matt 11:17-19). His ministry did not fail. The accusers were always on the wrong footing or unresponsive.

h. Miracles, even when performed by JESUS, did not guarantee repentance. Instead, unrepentance carried with it very dire consequences (Matt 11:20-24).

i. However, Jesus IS THE ONE who can still give you REAL rest inspite of your present difficulties. The condition of obtaining this rest is to take Jesus' yoke - His way of interpreting the law that does not become burdensome.

Bro/sis, Christians are not exempted from difficulties, like John the Baptist himself experienced imprisonment and beheading. But since our "knowledge" of the heavenly Father is the Son's "choosing" (Matt 11:25-27), none of us can doubt the veracity of that choice, who will always succeed and be ultimately victorious.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matt 11:28-30)

In view of all the above, Jesus is more than qualified to give you that assurance of "rest for your souls". Trust Him! Take His yoke.

星期五 2024年1月12日 今日读经:马太福音11章














d. 马太又向读者指向第一和第二章:先知们都指向耶稣, 而现在指向马太福音11章和祂的作为。所以站立得稳,不要动摇!

e. 即便是关在牢里,施洗约翰仍然是“我的使者”(太11:10),引自玛拉基书3:1。

f. 即便目前的处境困难重重,耶稣仍肯定施洗约翰为“最大的”(太11:11)。

g. 那只是因为人们对施洗约翰的讲道没有回应(太11:17-19)。他的事工并没有失败。那提出控诉的常常不是搞不清楚状况就是毫无反应。

h. 神迹,即使是耶稣行的,也不保证人们会悔改。反而,不悔改会附带严重的后果(太11:20-24)。

i. 然而,耶稣是那个可以给你真正的休息的那位,无论你现在的处境如何。要获得这休息的条件是背耶稣的轭--祂诠释律法的方法并不会使人感到有很重的负担。