We build on the notion that we are adopted as sons of the living God. You would think that if we are adopted as sons that we would be equal to Christ. How can we be called co-heirs with Christ Jesus, but still call Christ our Lord?
Christ has discussed and warned his disciples about the struggles and issues that the church will face in time as they go to carry out Christ’s mission. The temptation is not to go forward with Christ’s mission. I mean if this is a kingdom that only involves cross bearing plus suffering then why go? Christ gives the assurance that we go because we will receive the prophet’s reward. So, what is that prophet’s reward?
There are two motivations or orientations to consciously living out our faith. The first way is living as a slave which results in our being afraid of God. This is not necessarily far off the mark as the Apostle Paul does speak of us as being slaves of righteousness in Romans 6. Paul himself is a slave of Christ as he opens the book of Romans. However, the other way to live out the call of the Gospel is as a son. Why would Paul make a distinction between sonship and slavery if he identifies himself as a slave of Christ?
One would think that being a disciple of Christ would result in instant glory. It must have been an incredible privilege to be sent out by Christ himself, and the people would embrace the messengers of the kingdom with open arms. This is what we would think, but Christ exhorts us to exercise wisdom in a way that almost seems contradictory. On the one hand we are to be humble doves, but on the other hand we are be be slithering serpents. How do we reconcile these two concepts? What is Christ trying to communicate to us?
When we talk about the work of Christ we can talk about Christ securing us, or Christ redeeming us, or Christ paying the debt so we can be righteous. However, is the work of Christ complete enough to save us until the end? How do we know that we will partake of Christ’s work making Christ’s work our work?
One of the main consequences of the fall is that we do not want God to rule over us. We might think that God’s ruling over us is going to limit our fun, our joy, and our contentment in this life. However, what if God’s ruling over us by his providence actually secures our fun, our joy, and our contentment? How do we find contentment in the Lord as he rules over us?
Matthew alerts us that Christ enters history to save his people from their sins. One would expect Christ to be received with excitement, but that is not the case. Now Christ sends out his disciples to the surrounding area to proclaim the gospel. Will they be embraced with open arms? Abraham’s children embrace the substance of their redemption?
The Lord rules over this creation and over this world. When we survey this creation and different challenges that we face in our day to day lives we might question the Lord’s competence. There is unrest, turmoil, and there is trouble in this world so why do we want our God to be sovereign? It would seem better if we could try out hand at ruling the world. So, why is it a good thing that God is sovereign and we are not sovereign?
The doctrine of the trinity is a confusing doctrine. How can God be one God and three persons at the same time? Why would we want to talk about God being one God and three persons? How can such talk be encouraging and necessary? Is it necessary to speak of God being one God and three persons?
Matthew tells us that this Jesus is the embodiment of Yahweh’s salvation that his name means, “Yahweh Saves.” There are two ways that we can understand Christ conducting himself. He could have his authority from Satan so he is only deceiving his followers or he can have his authority from God. I think that his authority is from God, but who do you say empowers Christ? This is the question that Matthew desires us to answer.