Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Matthew 9 Sermon Notes

Matthew 9:1-17
New Wine, New Bottles
Sermon Notes
September 4, 2016
Lynchburg, Virginia

         New Wine, New Wineskins
         Old Wine is good, often better than new wine.
         But if you want to make new wine, you have to have new wine skins.
         The Pharisees peddle new doctrines in old wine skins. That will fail. Jesus says to them, “You have heard that it has been said, but I say.”
         Jesus’s doctrine will not fit in the scribes and Pharisees paradigm. We need a new wine skin for Jesus. We need a new paradigm.
         Jesus is new wine. The Old Covenant won’t hold Him. Even the ministry of John Baptist could not hold Jesus. That will burst, too. There is a New Covenant based on better promises.
         Jesus is altogether something new. God is with man. Emmanuel. The fruition of all the old types and shadows must be replaced. One pastor described the Old Covenant system as the scaffolding of the building. The building is the Temple of God. And that true temple, the complete Temple is Jesus Christ. So, there really is something totally new here in Jesus. The scaffolding must be torn down to see the building as it really is.
The fall of man is repaired, etc. covenant, break, promises, fulfillment, recreation, this is all new. Grace, faith, baptism, Holy Spirit. New, new, new. End of sacrificial era. No more sacrifices just faith in Jesus.

And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city. 
Jesus passed over the Sea of Galilee and then went to Capernaum. We are told the location in Mark 2.
The people of Capernaum gladly receive Jesus and He does numerous miracles there.

2 And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.
Mark adds that they let him down through the roof.
The man was paralyzed and was carried to Jesus. This is a tremendous effort to get to Jesus. Jesus see their faith. He did not just see the faith of the man who was sick. We do not really know much about his faith. It may that he did have great faith and exhorted his friends and family to carry him to Jesus. But the friends show great faith as well. They take him to Jesus.
Jesus saw their faith. How did He see it? Was their faith in their hearts? No, it was in the hands that carried the paralytic. Their faith was action. Their belief carried a paralytic. Their faith worked.
They bring Jesus a paralytic and Jesus forgives his sins. Maybe he was disappointed. He came to Jesus so that he could be healed and rise and walk. Instead, Jesus simply forgives his sins. Which is greater?
But the forgiveness of sins does enable you to walk. In fact, if you are not forgiven, then you are paralyzed.

3 And, behold, certain of the scribes said within themselves, This man blasphemeth.  4 And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts? 5 For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk? 6 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house. 7 And he arose, and departed to his house.  8 But when the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men.
The scribes and Pharisees are there. They follow Jesus around. Not to hear Him with faith but to catch Him in His words and actions. They are looking for blasphemy from Jesus are quick to find it.
Jesus knew their thoughts. Did He read their minds, as God? Or, did He simply know the kind of men these scribes and Pharisees were? Jesus ascribes ill motives to them but He is right.
Why would the Son of man have power to forgive sins? Only if He was the Son of God. That is the point Jesus is making and the point the scribes are contesting.
What does the forgiveness of sins do? It heals, restores, makes strong, enables. God had given such power to men, to Jesus. We might say, “Yes, but Jesus was God.” That is true, but this power is not relegated to God alone. In a short time, Jesus will give this power to His disciples and then later to the Apostle Paul. This power is the Holy Spirit and God dispenses this power to men as He wished.
There is an additional thought that goes with Jesus’s power to forgive sins. If He has power to forgive repentant sinners, then He also has authority to condemn those who do not repent.
Jesus is also making a statement about the nature of true religion. This is new wine. Is the goal of religion to be put right with God in a formal sense through sacrifice? Or, is to get a new heart through repentance and the forgiveness of sins? Of course, true religion had always been heart religion and the ancient Jews as well as modern Christians are always in danger of messing this up. Repent and believe. Have a good conscience towards God and your neighbor. Be humble before the Lord and He will lift you up.
The Pharisees rightly note that only God can forgive sinners. Jesus is making the point that the Pharisees cannot forgive sinners but sinners need forgiven. How do we solve this dilemma? Only through the One Sacrifice that can forgive all men for all time.

Matt. 9:9   And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him. 
Jesus calls Matthew. Matthew was a tax collector. He is the same man named Levi in Mark and Luke. Tax collectors were in cahoots with the Romans. The system worked be everyone getting their cut along the way. The collectors kept part of their collections and paid was due above them. But they could not do so with complicity in a system that was corrupt. These Jews were despised by many of their fellows for being sold out to Rome.
Jesus could not have made a worse pick as far as the Jewish leaders were concerned. How can you pick such sinners and still be a faithful Jew? The Messiah would never do such a thing!
Jesus simply calls Matthew to follow Him. Matthew responds. He arises and follows. You get the sense that His response to Jesus was quick and full. He followed.

10 And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.  11 And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?
Mark tells us that many people, publicans and sinners, followed Jesus.
This is still about who will follow Jesus. Matthew follows. Sinners follow. Tax collectors follow. Prostitutes follow. But the Pharisees will not follow. The scribes refuse Him.
Their question is telling. Why does Jesus eat with publicans and sinners? Because Publicans and sinners need Jesus. Because Publicans and sinners need forgiveness. Because publicans and sinners know that they are sinful and desire restoration and healing.

The Pharisees should have been able to answer the question but they could not.  They neither understood God nor people. They are deaf and blind in nearly every conceivable way. They have no capacity to love as they should. They do not love God or their neighbor.

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