Southern Christian University

Matthew, Mark, Luke, & John

James A. Turner

Class Session Two


Hello, students.  When our first class session was up, I believe we were reading from the gospel of Luke.  And, I believe, I stated that we would turn and read Matthew's account in this class session, and that we plan to do.  But first, I would like for us to briefly review some of the things that we went over in our first class.  First, Matthew, Mark and Luke are referred to as the synoptic gospels, S‑Y‑N‑O‑P‑T‑I‑C, because they are so much alike.  Frequently, all three writers record about the same events.  And sometimes, what they record may seem to be contradictory of what another one says, but there are no real contradictions.   Each writer wrote from his own viewpoint, and they are usually easily reconciled. 


We also talked about a few things about each one of the writers, that Matthew is one of the twelve apostles that Jesus chose, and when Jesus chose him for full‑time ministry, Matthew was a publican, a tax collector, and he was sitting at the place of toll when Jesus called him to full‑time ministry.  Immediately he left the place of toll and followed Jesus.  Soon after he was called, he gave a great feast, and invited many publicans and sinners,  and many publicans and sinners attended that feast.  So Matthew, very definitely, is an inspired apostle, and thus in every sense well qualified to write the gospel according to Matthew.  A good probable date for his book  would be about 50 A.D., written especially for the benefit of the Jewish people when those Jewish Christians were being persecuted by the unbelieving Jews.  Remember Acts chapter seven, after Stephen was stoned to death, that those who stoned him laid down their clothes at a young man's feet whose name was Saul.  Then in the eighth chapter, we read that devout men took Stephen out and buried him, and as for Saul, he made havoc of the church, committing both men and women to prison, and the disciples were scattered abroad, and they went everywhere preaching the word.  It looks like the hardened Jewish people continued to persecute those Jewish Christians.  Surely there was a great need for Matthew's gospel.  Matthew then wrote, we think, to assure and comfort and encourage those Jewish believers during that time of persecution.  Matthew uses the Old Testament Scriptures many times to show that what was done, or what Jesus did was in fulfillment of those Old Testament prophecies. A good running statement that he makes is and this came to pass that it might be fulfilled, which was spoken by the prophets.  Thus showing that the Old Testament prophets had prophesied concerning Christ, and what had transpired was in fulfillment of what the Old Testament prophets had said.  Surely that was very meaningful to those Jewish converts, and, of course, showing that the New Testament religion is about Christ and his work is a fulfillment of what the Old Testament prophets had said concerning him.  That Christ is the fulfillment of the promises that God made to Abraham and on down to David. 


In regard to Mark, we called attention to how that we first read about Mark in Acts 12:11-12, 12:25, that when Peter was released from prison, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John Mark, where many were gathered together praying, Acts 12:12.  Paul and Barnabas were at Jerusalem during the time that Peter was released by the angel, and I guess during that period when Herod killed James, the brother of John.  They had been sent by the church at Antioch of Syria, the first Gentile church, to carry contributions to the elders of the church at Jerusalem.  When they returned back to Antioch, they carried John Mark with them (Acts 12:25).  And John Mark started with them on that first journey as they set sail to the isle of Cyprus. He was with them during that work on the isle of  Cyprus, but then they went up to Perga of  Pamphylia,  John Mark left them and went back home to Jerusalem, (Acts 13:13).  When Paul and Barnabas got ready to go on that second journey, Barnabas wanted to carry John Mark again,  and Paul did not want to carry him because he had left them on that first journey, and the contention became so sharp that they separated.  Barnabas chose John Mark and sailed again to the isle of Cyprus, going in the same direction that they had gone on that first journey.  Paul chose Silas, one of the two men that the church of Jerusalem had sent to tell in person those Gentile Christians at Antioch that the men did not have to be circumcised, and that they did not have to keep the law of Moses and just to refrain from the pollution of idols and fornication and from what is strangled and from blood. 


In I Peter 5:13, Peter speaks of Mark as his son.  And in Colossians 4:10, during that first Roman imprisonment of two years, Mark was with Paul during that imprisonment, Colossians 4:10 and also Philemon, verse twenty‑three.  And then during the second Roman imprisonment, Paul writing to Timothy and telling him ‑‑ I believe he states that only Luke is with me and take Mark and bring him with you, for he is useful to me in the ministry.  So we have a long period of time there when we do not have anything recorded about John Mark, after Barnabas took him on that second journey.  But, evidently, Mark must have turned out well on that journey.  These other records show very definitely that he turned out to be a good worker, fellow worker, a laborer in the kingdom of God.  And we have reason to believe that since he was in the company of Peter and Paul, that he must have had a miraculous gift.  Remember by the laying on of the apostles' hands, miraculous gifts were given.  The gifts are enumerated in I Corinthians chapter twelve, verses four through eleven.  Either Peter or Paul could have imparted to him the gift of prophecy, which would have given him inspired ability to teach.  Of course, he had heard Paul preach many times, and early writers speak to the point that he pretty well wrote down what he had heard Peter preach.  But I believe up and above that that he was an inspired man, and he wrote the gospel of Mark, which is the shortest of all the gospel books, only sixteen chapters. And he does not give anything about the birth of John the Baptist or the birth of Christ, but just moves immediately in telling about John the Baptist came preaching and then immediately into the work of Jesus. 


Then in regard to Luke, Luke is the only one who gives details about the birth of John the Baptist and also several things about the early days of Christ.  Remember he tells about Christ being in the temple when he was twelve years of age, that neither Matthew or either one of the other gospel writers tells about, and so we have more from Luke.  His gospel ranks first from the standpoint of telling about Christ, first giving about the angel appearing to Zecharias, while he was in the temple during the time of his work in  the temple, according to the order of the course.  We turned back and read from the account in I Chronicles chapters twenty‑three and twenty‑four about David dividing up the Levites and also then of the priests in chapter twenty‑four, into twenty‑four courses.  And Zecharias was of the course of Abijah, and I believe he was the eighth course of those twenty‑four courses.  So those first three chapters of Luke tell us a number of things that we are not told about by either of the other gospel writers.  And we have more about the childhood of Jesus in Luke's gospel than we do in Matthew's gospel. 


Then with John's gospel, it is very different from the other gospels, and I do not believe we will move further on that today.  Let me see some other things that we went over.  Okay.  We will notice today in our reading that Matthew's account about the virgin birth of Christ is later than Luke's account.  Remember that the angel Gabriel appeared to Zecharias, while he was burning incense on the incense altar, and told him that his prayers had been heard and  that his wife, Elizabeth would bear a son, and he was to call his name John, and that he would be filled with the Holy Spirit from his mother's womb.  So John the Baptist was to be filled with the Holy Spirit and named before he was conceived.  And remember that Luke tells about the angel Gabriel appearing to Mary before she was with child and told her that she was going to have a child, and “that he shall be great and he shall be called the Son of God Most High.  And God shall give him the throne of his Father David, and he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever and of his kingdom there shall be no end (Luke 1:31-33).” Mary wanted to know how could that be?  And she says, “how can this be, seeing that I know not a man”?  Mary was a virgin.  She had not had sex with any man.  So she asked the angel how that would take place.  And Gabriel told her how it would take place, and that which would be conceived in her would be of the Holy Spirit. 


I believe we will just stop from that brief review and begin reading from Matthew's gospel.  Matthew begins by giving the genealogy of Jesus as traced through Abraham and then David and on down until the birth of Christ. Let us begin and read his genealogy.  Remember that Matthew's genealogy is very different from Luke's genealogy, as given in chapter three of Luke.  Luke begins and traces backward all the way back to Adam.  “The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham, and there are many, many passages that speak of Jesus as being the son of David.  And it looks like the Jewish people as a whole  recognize that Jesus was the son of David.  Abraham begat Isaac”. Now, do you remember the promise that God made to Abraham as recorded in Genesis 12:3, that God called Abraham while he was still uin the Ur of the Chaldees and told him to leave his country and his kindred and his father's house and go into the land that I will show thee and I will bless thee and make thy name great and through thy seed all nations and families of the earth shall be blessed.  And that promise meant that Christ would come of the seed of Abraham.  But remember that not only did the Jewish people come of the seed of Abraham, but many Gentile people came of the seed of Abraham.  First the son of the handmaiden, Ishmael, and how Abraham was ready for Ishmael to be his heir. 

When Isaac was weaned, they gave a big feast.  And on that occasion, Sarah saw Ishmael persecuting her son Isaac, and it stirred her up.  And she said to Abram, cast out the handmaiden and her son, for he is not going to inherit with my son.  Abraham had had that son for about seventeen years, and he did not want to cast out the handmaiden and her son.  But God told Abraham to do as Sarah had said for him to do.  And that he would make a great nation of Ishmael.  But he said, “but in Isaac shall thy seed be called,” meaning that the Jewish people would come from the descendants of Isaac and not through Ishmael. Then after the death of Sarah, Genesis twenty‑five, Abram married Keturah and had six sons by her, but they did not inherit like Isaac did.  So God’s chosen people, the Jews, were to be called through Isaac.  And then in regard to Isaac, he and Rebecca had twins, Jacob and Esau.  And God made a choice before they were born that the Jewish people would be called through Jacob (Genesis 25:21-23; Romans 9:10-12).  Notice here, “Abraham begat Isaac;  and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judah, and his brethren; and Judah begat Perez and Zerah of Tamar; and Perez begat Hezron; and Hezron begat Ram; and Ram begat Amminadab; and Amminadab bsgat Nahshon; and Nahshon begat Salmon; and Salmon begat  Boaz of Rahab; and Boaz begat Obed of Ruth  So notice here in verse five, two Gentile women in the genealogy of Christ.  Salmon begat Boaz of Rahab.  And Rahab hid the spies and sent them out another way, and she and her house were saved because of that (Joshua 2:1-21, 6:22-23). “And Boaz begat Obed of Ruth.”  And I am confident you remember from the book of Ruth about that story.  “And Obed begat Jesse; and Jesse begat David the king.  And David begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Uriah.  Of course, that's Bathsheba.  And Solomon begat Rehoboam; and Rehoboam begat Abijah; and Abijah begat Asa; and Asa begat and Jehoshaphat begat  Joram; and Joram begat begat Uzziah; and Uzziah begat Jotham,  and Jotham begat Ahaz;  and Ahaz begat Hezekiah;  and Hezekiah begat; and Manasseh begat Amon; and Amon begat Josiah; and Josiah begat Jechoniah and his brethren, at the time of the carrying away to Babylon.”


We read about that carrying away to Babylon in II Kings chapter twenty‑four.  And that was in 597 B.C.  He is called Jehoiachin in that Old Testament reference, and he is called Jechoniah here.  He is called Coniah, which would be the short of Jechoniah in Jeremiah 22:24- 30.  And remember that the prophet Jeremiah made a prophecy concerning Jechoniah or Coniah, as he is called in that reference.  The Revised Standard version says “write this man as childless.  A man who shall not prosper in his days, for none of his seed shall reign on the throne of David in Judah  I am not quoting it exactly, but that is the meaning of it.  So Jeremiah said that the descendants of Jechoniah are not going to reign in Judah.  In other words, when Jechoniah was carried into Babylonian captivity at the time of that second carrying away, for all practical purposes that was the end of the earthly throne of David.  Of course, there was that king Zedekiah, that the Babylonians called him, that was made king.  But he was supposed to have been under the authority of the Babylonian government.  But then he rebelled.  And so after eleven years, the Babylonian forces came back and destroyed the temple and all the great great houses in Jerusalem, and then there was the third and final carrying away in 586 B.C.  Now, on the basis of the reading of the King James and the American Standard Version, some have concluded that this king did not have any children.  But we see from the reading here in Matthew 1:12 that he absolutely had children.  But that was marking the end of the earthly throne of David.  And in our Acts class, we reviewed about that throne of David and how that the Old Testament prophets continued to tell that Christ would be raised up to reign on the throne of David.  And I have forgotten right now whether that was included in your handouts or not.  If it is, be sure and give careful attention to the outline Christ Is Now Reigning On The Throne Of David.  And remember as promised by the angel Gabriel, “God shall give him the throne of his father David, and he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there shall be no end  The house of Jacob today is the new Israel of God, made up of Jews and Gentiles who have obeyed the gospel of Christ and applied the blood of Jesus to save them from sin (Romans 2:28-29). 


Now notice that Jechoniah did have children after he was carried to Babylon, verse twelve.  “And after the carrying away to Babylon, Jechoniah begat Shealtiel; and Shealtiel begat Zerubbabel; and Zerubbabel begat Abiud.”  Now, Zerubbabel would be the grandson of Jechoniah.  And he is the one that led that first company of Jews back to the land of Israel.  After the fall of Babylon, Cyrus, the new Persian king, immediately told the Jewish people that all those that wanted to go back to Jerusalem could go back.  That first company was a little less than fifty thousand people, including their servants, and they were led back under the leadership of Zerubbabel, who was their first governor.  In other words, he was appointed by Cyrus to be the first governor of the people in the land of Israel, and we learn that from reading about him in the book of Ezra.  It shows very plainly that Zerubbabel was the one that led them back and was their first governor.  And remember again the prophecy made by Jeremiah, “write this man as childless, no more shall a man of his seed prosper, reigning in Judah.”  Well, that is the place that the premillennial preachers like Harold Lindsey are going to have him to reign, according to Harold Lindsey in his book entitled, The Late Great Planet Earth.  He talks about how that another temple must be built, and be built on the same location that the other temples were built on, and the Jewish system put into operation again including animal sacrifices.  And think how ridiculous when one the primary burdens of the Epistle to the Hebrews was to show them the superiority of Christ and the New Testament religion over the prophets and angels, through which the Old Testament law was given.  The writer continues to talk about how that the New Testament law is superior to the Old Testament law and that the blood of animals could not take away sin (Hebrews 10:3-4), and how the law was a shadow of things to come and not the very image of those things. And if the worshipers back there had “once been cleansed, that they would have had no remembrance of sin,” speaking of that day of annual atonement when the high priests went into the most holy place in the tabernacle and made atonement for himself and for his family and then for  all the people. 


They had a day of annual atonement as set forth in Leviticus chapter sixteen. And thus the New Testament writer says that if the worshipers had once been cleansed, there would be no remembrance of sin.  But they had that system of remembering, having that day of annual atonement, which came on the tenth day of the seventh month of the Jewish calendar.  Under the Old Testament law, there was no complete forgiveness of sin.  When a person learned that he had sinned, according to the first five chapters of the book of Leviticus, he was to carry the animal that the law required to make atonement to the place where the tabernacle was.  And the tabernacle was at Shiloh, for about three hundred or more years, that was the first place of worship for the Jewish people.  In Deuteronomy chapter twelve, instruction is given that they could not make their sacrifices for sin anywhere except at the tabernacle, and then a number of centuries later in the days of Solomon the temple was built in Jerusalem; and then Jerusalem was the only place that they were to keep the three annual feasts.


In Joshua 18: 1 after the initial conquest of Canaan, they set up the tabernacle at Shiloh.  And so that is the place that God chose as the first place of worship for the Jewish people.  And the people went there to offer their sacrifices for sins and to keep those three annual feasts.  But let me emphasize that this is saying that there was a descendant of Jechoniah, and Christ comes of his seed, that he could not prosper reigning in Judah.  So if we did not have another reference, but Jeremiah 22:24-30 and Matthew 1:12, they show that the premillennial doctrine that Christ is going to come back to earth and reign on an earthly throne for a thousand years is a false doctrine.  And give close attention to the outline if I included it, that Christ Is Now Reigning On The Throne Of David.  Verse thirteen again, “Zerubbabel begat Abiud; and Abiud begat Eliakim;  and Eliakim begat Azor;  and Azor begat Sadoc; and Sadoc begat Achim; and Achim begat Eliud;   and Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Mathan; and Mathan begat Jacob;  and Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.  So all the generations from Abraham unto David are fourteen generations, and from David unto the carrying away from Babylon, fourteen generations, and from the carrying  away to Babylon unto the Christ, fourteen generations.” 


Now, it begins and tells about the angel appearing to Joseph after Mary was with child.  And Joseph was about to put her away privily and not make a public example of her when he was told by the angel of the Lord in a dream to be not afraid to take unto thee Mary thy wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.  And remember Luke's account was that Gabriel appeared to her before she was with child.  So verse eighteen, "Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise, when his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together as (husband and wife), she was found with child of the Holy Spirit.  And Joseph her husband, being a righteousness man and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily."  He did not know why she was with child, and evidently he thought that she had had sex with some man.  But he did not want to make her a public example and was minded to put her away privily.  "But when he thought on these things."  He was thinking about what he ought to do about the matter.  "Behold, an angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit."  And remember Gabriel said that the Holy Spirit would overshadow her and the child would be conceived by the Holy Spirit.  And Mary was ready to be the handmaiden of the Lord.  But here in Matthew's account, it would have to be later than Luke's.  "And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus, for it is he that shall save his people from their sins."  Remember John and Jesus were named before they were even conceived in the womb.  "Now all this has come to pass that it might be fulfilled which is spoken by the prophet, by the Lord through the prophet, saying, Behold, the virgin shall be with child and shall bring forth a son and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which is interpreted God with us." 


There are several passages that speak of Christ as God.  And so during that personal ministry of Christ, God was with the people. The quotation there is from Isaiah 7:14. There are some problems with that reference, and I wish we had time to go into some detail about that, but let us be assured of this one thing, that the inspired writer here is stating things correctly that Isaiah 7:14 was referring to the birth of Christ, that a virgin would bring forth a son and his name was to be called Emmanuel, which is being interpreted God with us.  "And Joseph arose from his sleep and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took unto him his wife:  And knew her not untill she had brought forth a son:  And he called his name Jesus."  And notice that they did not have sexual relations.  That is the meaning of, “and knew her not until she had brought forth a son  And he called his name Jesus like he had been instructed to do by the angel of the Lord and like the prophet Gabriel said he was to be called.  Now, you know how the Catholics try to make Mary a perpetual virgin, and about every year people somewhere supposedly are seeing the virgin Mary.  They gather at one place after another, and about every year they supposedly are seeing the virgin Mary somewhere.  And there is absolutely no proper grounds for them referring to Mary as a perpetual virgin.  Matthew shows very plainly that Joseph and Mary had a number of children after the birth of Jesus.  I am reading from Matthew chapter thirteen beginning with verse fifty‑four, about the other children.  "And coming into his own country."  (Christ).  "He taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works?  Is not this the carpenter's son?  Is not his mother called Mary?  And his brethren, James, and Joseph, and Simon, and Judas?"  So four brothers.  "And his sisters, are they not all with us?"  Sisters would have to be at least two, wouldn't it?  So four boys besides Jesus, five, and two sisters would make seven.  So there would be at least seven in the family of Joseph and Mary.  And James the Lord's brother was made an apostle (I Corinthians 15:5-8; Galatians 1:18-19), and he is the author of the book of James.  And Judas, that would be another one of the brothers that wrote a New Testament book entitled Jude.  And so there is no ground whatever for Mary being a perpetual virgin. 

Chapter Two,

"Now Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews?  For we have seen the star in the east, and have come to worship him." Now, remember in Luke's account that an angel appeared to the shepherds as they were keeping watch over their flock and told them fear not for this day in the city of David there is born a Savior who is Christ the Lord.  And the sign  that was given to the shepherds was that you will find the babe lying in a manager wrapped in swaddling clothes.  And they went and found the babe in the manger as the angel had told them.  And then after the angel had appeared to the shepherds, there appeared a great multitude of the heavenly hosts singing praises and saying peace on earth, celebrating the birth of Christ.  So Matthew's account looks like it is about two years later than Luke's account in regard to the child Jesus.  And here wise men come from the east seeking for the Christ child.  "Where is he that is born King of the Jews?  For we saw his star in the east, and have come to worship him."  Now, remember Abraham was in the Ur of the Chaldees in the land of  Mesopotamia when God called him.  Do you suppose that is where the wise men may have come from?  "And when Herod the king had heard it, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him."  Herod, of course, did not want any rival to be made king.  And he did not know that it was about a man who would establish a  spiritual kingdom. "And gathered together all the chief priests and scribes of the people he inquired of them, where the Christ should be born.  And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea:  For thus it is written through the prophet."  And thus it is written, Matthew says, a number of times in this book that it might be fulfilled by the prophet.  "And thou Bethlehem, land of Judah, art in no wise least among the princes of Judah:  For out of thee shall come forth a governor, who shall be shepherd of my people Israel."  And notice that the reference is from Micah 5:2, and so the chief priests and scribes knew the Old Testament reference concerning Christ. They knew that reference, that Christ was going to be born in Bethlehem, and so they told king Herod.  Verse seven, "Then Herod, privily called the wise men, and learned of them exactly what time the star appeared." Now, Herod then gives a decree that all children under two years of age should be put to death.  So it must have been about two years prior to their coming to Jerusalem inquiring before the wise men came to Jerusalem.  "Then Herod, privily called the wise men, learned of them being exactly what time the star appeared.  And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go out and search out exactly concerning the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me the word, that I may also come and worship him."  And, of course, what Herod wanted to do was to kill that child and not to worship him.


 "When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was."  Not a babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, but where the young child was. "And when they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.  And they came into the house, and saw the young child with Mary his mother."  And so they are no longer in a stable, and the babe is no longer wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger as stated in Luke.  But they are in the house, and they came into the house and saw the young child with Mary his mother.  "And they fell down, and worshipped him:  And opening their treasures, they offered unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh."  So they offered him three gifts.  I reckon it is on the basis of those three gifts that still many are trying to dramatize the birth of Jesus to have three wise men, but the Bible does not say how many wise men, but they offered three gifts.  "And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way."  Let me emphasize again that the Bible makes a distinction between men and angels.  And I do not like to  hear our brethren speak of angels as just messengers and leave the impression that men, ordinary men, can be angels. 


Hello, students.  It is time for us to begin this second part of this class session.  And when our time was up for the first part of it, we were reading Matthew two and on verse thirteen.  I want to read it again and emphasize it again.  We have already read that when Joseph was about to put away Mary privily that an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream.  Verse thirteen here reads, "And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I tell thee:  For Herod will seek the young child to destroy him."  If you have not given careful attention to various references that are talking about angels, I hope that you will do so, and that you will see clearly that the Bible makes a distinction between men and angels.  For instance, if an angel is just a messenger, and he can just be a man carrying God's message as some few of our brethren are speaking of them, can such a person appear to another person and tell him something in a dream?  I believe you know the answer to that. 


I think we have already mentioned that an angel can take any form that they need to take to do whatever God wants them to do.  In the ninth chapter of the book of Daniel, we read about how that Daniel was confessing and praying to God.  He had learned that the time for Babylonian captivity was to be over, and it looks like that he was expecting much greater things to be taking place in regard to the people in Jerusalem.  So he was confessing his sins and the sins of the people and making requests to God when the angel Gabriel flew swiftly and got to Daniel before he had completed his prayer! Do you think the space Shuttles can fly that fast?  And then in the thirteenth chapter of the book of Judges, we read about an angel of the Lord appearing to Manoah’s wife, who was barren, and told her that she was going to bear a son and that she was not to drink any wine or strong drink and the that child that would be born was to be a Nazarite, from his mother's womb.  Manoah was not present when the angel appeared to his wife, and he prayed to God that the man might be sent again.  His prayer was answered, and the man returned, and Manoah questioned him about the child and then he questioned the angel about himself.  I am reading from Judges chapter thirteen, picking up with verse seventeen.  This is after the man returned a second time.  "And Manoah said unto the angel of the Lord, What is your name, so that when your words come true?"  In other words, when this child is born, and, of course, that child was Samson.  He was to deliver the people of Israel from the Philistines.  "Come true we may honor you?  And the angel of the Lord said to him, Why do you ask my name, seeing it is wonderful?  He had wanted to prepare a meal for the man, but the angel told him if he did anything, to make ready  a burnt offering.  And so that is what we are reading about here in verse nineteen.  "So Manoah took a kid with a cereal offering, and offered it upon the rock to the Lord:  To him who works wonders; and when the flame went up toward heaven from the altar, the angel of the Lord descended in the flame from the altar, while Manoah and his wife looked on, and they fell on their faces to the ground.  And the angel of the Lord appeared no more to Manoah and his wife.  Then Manoah knew that he was the angel of the Lord.  And Manoah said to his wife."  See, if he had just remained in the form of a man, they would not have known definitely, but when he ascended in the flame of the sacrifice that was being made, then they knew that he was an angel. "And Manoah said to his wife, We shall surely die, for we have seen God.  But his wife said to him, If the Lord had meant to kill us, he would not have accepted a burnt offering and a cereal offering at our hands, or given us all these things, nor announced to us such things as these.  And the woman bore a son, and called his name Samson:  And the boy grew, and the Lord blessed him."  And so he was to deliver the people of Israel from the Philistines. 


Please start giving careful attention and try to discourage these few brethren, that seemingly want to make men angels.  There is no such thing as a human being actually being an angel!.  Verse fourteen, "And he arose, and took the young child,"  and the young child must have been about two years old.  Herod had inquired of the wise men exactly when the star appeared.  And they knew that the child had been born by the appearance of the star.  "And he arose and took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt:  And was there until the death of Herod:  That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord to the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt did I call my son."  And that is from Hosea, chapter eleven and verse  one.  "Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceedingly wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the male children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the borders thereof from two years old and under."  See, he had learned exactly when the star appeared.  So the child must have been about  two years of age when the wise men came.  "According to the time which he had exactly learned of  the wise men.  Then was fulfilled that which was spoken through Jeremiah the prophet, saying, the voice was heard in Rama, weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and she would not be comforted, because they are not."  And you see another statement, might be fulfilled.  And then was fulfilled that was spoken by the prophet, and that is from Jeremiah 31:15. 


"But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, Saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel:  For they are dead that sought the young child's life."  This Herod was dead.  "And he arose, and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel.  But when he heard that Archelas was reigning over Judaea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither:  Being warned of God in a dream, he withdrew into the parts of Galilee and came and dwelt in the city called Nazareth:  That it might be fulfilled which is spoken through the prophets, that he should be called a Nazarene."  And remember that Mary was in Nazareth, when Gabriel appeared to her.  And so the fulfillment of two references.  Out of Egypt did I call my son and that he would be called a Nazarene.  And when Philip told Nathanael about Jesus  Nathanael replied, “can any good thing come out of Nazareth,” and he was told to come and see (John 1:44-51). 

Chapter Three,

"In those days cometh John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, and saying, Repent ye:  For the kingdom of heaven is at hand.  For this is he that was spoken through Isaiah the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make ye ready the way of the Lord, make his paths straight."  And that is the reading of Isaiah forty and verse three.  I believe we read the three prophecies of the Old Testament concerning the coming of John the Baptist.  Isaiah 40:3 and Malachi 3:1 and Malachi 4:5‑6 are the three Old Testament prophecies concerning the coming and the work of John the Baptist.  Reading from Isaiah again, Isaiah chapter forty verses three through five, "The voice of one that crieth, Prepare ye in the wilderness the way of Jehovah, make level in the desert a highway of our God."  And that is the verse that is quoted.  And then verses four and five, "Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low:  And the uneven shall be made level, and the rough places plain: And the glory of Jehovah shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together:  For the mouth of Jehovah hath spoken it."  And, of course, verse five refers to the coming of Christ, that after John had prepared a way that Christ would come. Verse four, of course, is figurative and symbolic language that John the Baptist would make a good way for Christ, and then Christ would come as stated in verse five.  Let us go ahead and look at those two references in Malachi, the last book of the Old Testament, about John the Baptist.  Malachi 3:1, "Behold, I send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me:  And the Lord, whom ye seek, will come to his temple."  And so in 3:1, both John the Baptist and Christ are spoken of.  "That John would prepare the way before me:  And the Lord, whom ye seek."  And that is Christ.  "Will suddenly come to his temple:  And the messenger of the covenant."  Remember God is going to give Christ as a light and a covenant to the Gentiles in addition to the Jews.  "And a messenger of the covenant, whom ye desire:  Behold, he cometh, saith Jehovah.  And who can abide the day of his coming?"  The coming of Christ.  "Who shall stand when he appeareth?  For he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap:  And he will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver:  And he will purify the sons of Levi, and refine them as gold and silver."  And, again, figurative language about Christ.  And the refining, of course, would be turning them away from sin and receiving forgiveness of sin through the cleansing blood of Christ,.  He would be a purifier of the souls of man. 


So back to our reading in Matthew 3:4, "The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make ye ready the way of the Lord, make his path straight.  For John himself had his raiment of camel's hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins and his food was locusts and wild honey."  You remember Jesus later asked a question about that, when John, after he was in prison, sent some of his disciples to ask Jesus was he the one to come, or do we look for another?  And Jesus told them to go back and tell John the things that you saw and heard.  And blessed is he that is not offended in me.  But then he talked to the people about John the Baptist and commended him in a very good way.  And he said, “What went you out in the wilderness to see?  A reed shaken in the wind?  What went you out to see?  A man clothed in soft raiment  Well, they surely did not go out to see a reed shaken in the wind when they went to hear John.  John was a courageous man, and he did not listen to the voice of what was popular.  But he gave God's message to the people.  And his clothing was camel's hair and a leathern girdle,  and his food was locusts and wild honey.  So he surely was not clothed in soft raiment.  And now John himself had his raiment of camel's hair.  And in this he was also in the likeness of the prophet Elijah (II King 1:3-8).  And remember, as we have already read from Luke, why Luke tells us that he was to do the work that had been prophesied, concerning the coming of Elijah.  "John himself had his raiment of camel's hair and the leathern girdle about his loins, and his food was locusts and wild honey.  And then went out unto him Jerusalem and all Judaea and all the regions round about.  And they were baptized of him in the river Jordan confessing their sins."  And I believe I have a question?  How can we reconcile this with a statement made in Luke 7:30, how that the Pharisees and the lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, not being baptized of John, when here and  also the parallels in Mark and Luke, it is stated that all the people went and were baptized of John in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.  The word all, of course, is used in a relative sense.  And we still use the word all too many times today in a relative sense.  But there are a few exceptions to it.  "Then went out unto him Jerusalem, and all of Judaea,  and all of the region round about the Jordan, and they were baptizing of him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins." 


If you have not read the outline entitled Six Baptisms Of The New Testament, I want you to give careful attention to it.  And if you are preaching, I hope that you will use that lesson.  You will  probably need to divide it into two lessons and learn a number of those references that are given and get up and give in a detailed way about those six baptisms of the New Testament and how that when Paul wrote in Ephesians 4:4, “that there is one Lord, one faith, and one baptism,” that all those baptisms had been fulfilled except the baptism of fire, and it will be administered in the second advent of Christ.  I can remember the day when a great number of our brethren would speak of John's baptism as just a baptism of repentance and that it was not for  remission of sins.  But the Bible plainly teaches that it was for remission of sins.  And here in verse six, if there was no remission of sins, then why the confession of sins?  They were baptized with him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.  And Mark 1:4 and Luke 3:3 plainly states, the KingJames version that John's baptism was (for), the American Standard (unto) remission of sins, and the same in Luke 3:3.  So two references very definitely say that for or unto the remission of sins.  And the Greek word there is EIS, the same Greek word that is used in Acts 2:38, and the same as used in Matthew twenty‑six and twenty‑eight when Jesus instituted the Lord's Supper.  This is the blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many (for) in the King James Version and (unto) the American Standard Version the remission of sins. 


Young's Analytical Concordance gives forty‑three Greek words for the English word that may be translated as for or unto.  It may be that some of you have heard preachers tell you that in Acts 2:38 that the word there means because of.  It is no such thing according to Young's Analytical Concordance.  That word means, “with a view to”, and, of course, with a view to receiving remission of sins. Now, there is a Greek word that means because of in Young's Analytical Concordance.  It is spelled  G‑A‑L‑A‑L. But you do not have to know Greek to know that they are using it wrong, it is the same word used in Matthew 26:28.  “This is the blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the remission of sins.”  Did Christ die because men's sins  were already forgiven or did he die that they might be forgiven?.  So John's baptism was from heaven, (Matthew 21:23‑32),  It was for remission of sins, (Mark 1:4 and Luke 3:3), and those who rejected it were left in a lost condition.  Luke 7:29‑30 talks about how the people justified God when they received John's baptism, and the people as a whole received John's baptism.  And further then, verse thirty says the Pharisees and the lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of John.  So they remained in a lost condition.  And that reference needs to be used to teach how  important it is that people believe and that they repent of their sins and confess the name of Christ before men, and then they are to be baptized for the remission of their sins.  Those who rejected John's baptism remained in a lost condition! 


How can anyone reason properly that man can be saved today without accepting the baptism of the great commission that Jesus gave?  Remember after Jesus was raised from the dead, he said to his apostles as recorded in Mark 16:15‑16 “go ye into all the world, preaching the gospel to the whole creation.  He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.” So that conjunction is joining two things of about equal rank together.  Men must believe, of course, talking about that kind of faith that causes a man to do what the Lord has instructed him to do.  “He that believeth not shall be condemned.”  Somebody may say, well, it does not say anything about he that is baptized not will be condemned. Let me give a parallel sentence, he that eateth his food and digesteth it shall live.  He that eateth not shall die.  A man surely cannot live who does not eat, and so the digesteth is not needed.  And remember in John 3:16, "God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son that whosoever believeth on him shall not perish but have eternal life.  For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.  He that believeth on him is not judged."  "He that believeth not on him is judged already," or condemned, according to what version you are reading from, "already, because he had not believed on the name of the only begotten Son of God."  I believe that is verse eighteen.  Now, that reference needs to be emphasized that a person does not have to go out and publicly state that I am going to follow the devil.  All he has to do is just refuse to believe on the name of the only begotten Son of God, and he is doing what the devil wants him to do.  He is going the way of disobedience and he is condemned.  Of course, if he repents and then turns and obeys the Lord, he will be forgiven.  But as long as he stays in that state, he is condemned.  And John 3:36 in the American Standard version, “that he that obeyeth not the Son shall not seelife, but the wrath of God abideth on him  So a person who is not willing to believe and obey Christ cannot be saved. 


Matthew 3:7, "But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said unto them, Ye offspring of vipers, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?  Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance:  And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father:  For I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham."  Why does John the Baptist make a statement like that?  Think not to say, “we have Abraham to our fathers  Notice the fact that the Jewish people were reasoning, why we are the descendants of Abraham, and God gave the promises to Abraham.  And we are his descendants; therefore, we are a saved people.  But John said, “God is able even of these stones to raise up   children unto Abraham, and that there is more involved than just being a fleshly Jew! You have got to obey the Lord.  "And even now the axe lieth at the root of the trees:  every tree therefore that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.  I indeed baptize you in water unto repentance:  But he that cometh after me."  (Christ)  "Is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear:  He shall baptize you in the Holy Spirit and with fire."  So John said Christ will administer two baptisms.  And, of course, Christ also gave the command of water baptism as given in Matthew's account, Matthew 28:18-20, all power and authority.  One says power and the other one says authority, the King James and American Standard Versions. "Is given unto me in heaven and on earth.  Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit teaching them to observe all things what so  ever I have said unto you, and I will be with you always even unto the end of the world." 


 As stated here that Christ was to baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire.  And the apostles were baptized with the Holy Spirit on that first Pentecost after the resurrection and ascension of Christ as given in Acts two.  And then some years later, when those gathered at the household of Cornelius were baptized with the Holy Spirit, but then Peter commanded that they be baptized with water, and, of course, because water baptism is for remission of sins.  And remember there is more to baptism than it looks like on the surface.  On the surface, baptism is the likeness of the death, burial  and resurrection of Christ, as set forth in (Romans 6:3-7). The death burial, and resurrection are the primary facts that a sinner must know and believe before he can be saved I Corinthians 15:1-4. Baptism must be preceded by faith (John 8:28; Hebrews 11:6), repentance (Luke 13:3; Acts 17:30-31) and confession (Matthew 10:32; I Timothy 6:12), and then baptism puts one into Christ (Galatians 3:26-27; Romans 6:3-7), and into His church which is his spiritual body (I Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 1:22-23, 4:4). Christ' blood was shed in his death, and it is at the point of baptism that the alien sinner applies the blood of Christ.  (Exodus 12:7, 12:13; Ephesians 1:7). "So he shall baptize you with the Holy Spirit and in fire."  Notice verse twelve shows that fire baptism is hell fire.  "Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly cleanse his threshing floor, and he will gather his wheat into the garner; but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire."  The way of threshing grain in that day and time was for them to pile up the barley grain, or the wheat, or whatever small grain crop that they were harvesting on the threshing  floor, and then an ox pulled the threshing sled around over the grain to separate the chaff from the grain.  And then when that was done and the wind was right, they had the fan or shovel, or whatever they used to throw the grain up with, and the wind would blow the chaff out from the threshing floor, and the grain would be left on the floor.  And that is the illustration here in verse twelve, "Whose fan is in his hand, that he will thoroughly cleanse his threshing floor."  Jesus used this illustration to show what fire baptism is.  "He will gather his wheat into the garner."  And the wheat would represent the righteous.  The chaff would represent the ungodly.  "But the chaff, he will burn up with unquenchable fire."  I am confident that all of you have been giving attention to some of the large fires that we have been having in a number of western states and how some of those fires get up in the crowns of the trees, and then they go up many feet above the crowns of the tree.  A few days ago, they were talking about flames that were a hundred and fifty feet in height and being driven by the wind and in the crowns of the trees and reached out very far in the direction of the way the fire was burning.  It is just almost unquenchable when the wind is blowing in  the forest where the trees are thick and gets in the crown of trees like that, but God can send a rain, a downpour, and handle it in a matter of a little while.  So the only fire that is unquenchable is hell fire.  John says that Jesus will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire. 


And if you do not remember II Thessalonians one beginning with verse seven, you need to write that down at the end of verse twelve. In that reference Paul said, “ye that are troubled”, talking about those who were being persecuted.  "When the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, taking vengeance on them that know not God and obey not the gospel of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his power."  And at the same time that Christ would come with his mighty angels taking vengeance on those who know not God, have not obeyed the gospel of God, he is coming to be marveled out in his saints, verse ten of that same reference.  And so in the second advent, Christ will come with his mighty angels, taking vengeance on those who know not God and obey not the gospel, and he will be coming to reward with eternal salvation his redeemed people.   


"Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to the Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.  But John would have hindered him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and cometh thou to me?"  John the Baptist recognizes that Jesus is superior to him prior to the baptism of Jesus, but he did not know that he was the Christ to come until he saw the Spirit descending as a dove upon him, as we are told in the first chapter of the gospel of John. So Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized of him.  And this has been used to try to prove that baptism is not necessary, that Jesus did not have any sins; therefore baptism is not for remission of sins.  And some would reason he was just baptized to show the people that he was in a saved condition, but he had no sins.  But the point is that the baptism of John came while the Old Testament law was in effect and it was from heaven (Matthew 21:23-32).  And people had to receive the baptism of John if they received the counsel of God, and of course, Jesus also, even though he had no sins, because baptism had been commanded.  And so in order to keep all the provisions of the law then, he needed to be baptized.  Even though he did not have  any sins, baptism was still commanded.  "But John would have hindered him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?  But Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it now:  For thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness."  Righteousness comes  by a person doing as the law of God commands (Psalms 119:172).  And no man is righteous apart from the keeping of the commands of God.  And so Jesus needed to be baptized to fulfill all righteousness. 


"Then he suffered him.  And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway from the water:  And, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove, and coming upon him:  And, lo, a voice out of heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son in whom I am  well pleased."  So the dove descended on Jesus.  “And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway from the water.”  That implies going down into the water, doesn't it?  And John's baptism, he was baptizing in the river Jordan. John 3:23says that on  another occasion that “John was baptizing at Enon near to Salim, because there was much water there”.  So  baptism was a burial in water.(Acts 8:36-39; Romans 6:3-5).  New Testament baptism is a burial in water and not sprinkling or pouring. 

Chapter Four

Is about Jesus being driven into the wilderness and after forty days being tempted by Satan.  "Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.  And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward hungered.  And the tempter came and said unto him, If thou art the Son of God,  command that these stones become bread."  And I would like for you to notice that the Jewish people would have been very well pleased if Jesus had submitted to every temptation of Satan.  They wanted Jesus to do great signs.  And they were surely ready for him to multiply the loaves and the fishes.  And so it would have pleased them well if Jesus had turned the stones into bread. And notice that Jesus answered using the Old Testament scriptures.  "But he answered and said, It is written, man  shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."  And that reference is from Deuteronomy chapter eight and verse three that man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.  Man cannot have spiritual life without the word of God.  How much spiritual food are you eating? Which kind of food are you eating more of, physical or spiritual? There are books of the Bible, especially the Old Testament, that for all practical purposes, some members of the church do not know about. And so man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. "Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and he setteth him on the pinnacle of the temple.  And saith unto him, If thou art the Son of God, cast thyself down:  For it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee."  And that reference is from Psalms 91:11‑12.  "And on their hands shall they bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.  Jesus said unto him, Again it is written, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God."  The Jewish people would have been very well pleased if Jesus had cast himself down from the pinnacle of the temple. “Jesus said unto him, Again it is written."  And then the statement is from Deuteronomy 6:16.  "Thou shalt not make trial of the Lord thy God."  "Then the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountains, and showeth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; and he said unto him, All of these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.  Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan:  For it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.  Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, the angels came and ministered unto him."  And don't you know it would have pleased the Jewish people if Christ had submitted here to the devil's temptation and become an earthly ruler.  That was what they were expecting him to do. 


Remember that even the twelve apostles were expecting Christ to become an earthly king.  When Jesus told those twelve apostles, as recorded in Acts one and I believe around verse four or five, “John indeed baptized with water, but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit, not many days hence”.  The apostles understood that something great was going to happen when Jesus told them that, and they said “wilt thou at this time restore the kingdom to Israel  Even after all the teachings of Christ to those twelve apostles, they did not understand.  And we need not get so disappointed when we teach over  and over again about something and then find that some of our brethren, or maybe all of them, did not understand  Jesus had taught his apostles for that three‑and‑a‑half‑year period, and they still thought that he was going to be an earthly king.  And remember from John 6:14-15, after Jesus had multiplied the five loaves and the two fishes and fed the multitude of five thousand men and by the time you add the women and the children to the five thousand, you have over ten thousand, and they took up twelve baskets full.  And John tells us ‑‑ and he is the only one of the gospel writers that tell us this,  that they were ready to take him by force and make him an earthly king.  But Jesus knew what they were about to do and fled from their presence.  And when Pilate was questioning Jesus about whether or not he was a king, Jesus said that, “my kingdom is not of this world.  If my kingdom was of this world, then should my servants fight that I should not be delivered, but now is my kingdom not from hence (John 18:36).”  So Christ did not come to be an earthly king; if so, he would have let them make him an earthly king.  And as stated in John 18:36, “my kingdom is not of this world.”  There are still those who teach that old premillennial doctrine, and they are determined to make Christ an earthly king!  God did not send Christ to earth to be an earthly king, but he ascended to the Father, “far above all rule, and power, and dominion, and every name that is named (Ephesians 1:21).” 









Hello.  We are ready to begin our third part of this class session.  We were reading from Matthew four.  I believe the last verse we read was 4:11.  "Then the devil leaveth him."  After he had brought all three temptations.  Remember that with these three temptations, he appealed to Jesus through every avenue of temptation.  You remember how John says, I John 2:15‑16, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man loves the world the love of the Father is not in him, for all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust  of the eyes and the pride of life is not of the Father, but of the world.”  When satan tempted Jesus, he tempted him through all three avenues of temptation, as set forth here in Matthew four.  This is why Hebrews 4: 15 reads, “For we have not a high priest that can not be touched with the feelings of our infirmities, but was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin.” As we go along, I would like for us to take time to read some of the parallels from Mark and Luke, the three synoptic gospels that are very much alike, and notice the differences in their accounts.  Here in Matthew three beginning with verse thirteen, we have Jesus going to be baptized of John, and then the temptation.  Now, turn and read Mark's account and look at how much shorter it is. 


Turn to Mark one beginning with verse nine.  "And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in the Jordan." So he does not tell about John telling him I need to be baptized of thee and comest thou to me, and the reply of Jesus, but he just states that he came from Nazareth of Galilee to be baptized of John in the Jordan.  And notice how brief Mark is about the temptation of Christ in verse twelve, "And straightway the Spirit driveth him forth into the wilderness.  And he was in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan; and he was with wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him."  So his account is very different from Matthew’s and Luke’s in that it is very short.  But you see that there is no contradiction.  But they all speak of forty‑day period, and that he was tempted of Satan.  But one additional thing here that the others did not mention was that he was with the wild beasts.  The others do say that the angels came and ministered unto him.  I believe both of them do.  Matthew did, and Luke does. 


Turn now to Luke the fourth chapter, and let us read Luke's account beginning with verse one.  "And Jesus being full of the Holy Spirit returned from the Jordan."  After his baptism. "From the Jordan, and was led in the Spirit into the wilderness, during forty days being tempted of the devil.  And he did eat nothing in those days, and when they were completed he hungered.  And the devil said unto him, If thou art the Son of God, command this stone that they become bread.  And Jesus answered unto him, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone.  And he led him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.  And the devil said unto him, to thee will I give all the authority and the glory of them: For it hath been delivered unto me, and to whomsoever I will give it.  If thou therefore wilt worship before me, it shall be thine.  And Jesus answered and said unto him, It is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve."  So Luke gives a different order than Matthew, but there is no conflict.  "And he led him to Jerusalem and set him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said unto him, If thou art the Son of God, cast thyself down from hence:  For it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee, to guard thee:  And on their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.  And Jesus answering and said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not make trial of the Lord thy God.  And when the devil had completed every temptation, he departed from him for a season.  And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee:  And there went out concerning him throughout all the region round about.  And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified of all." 


Back now to Matthew chapter four and verse twelve.  "Now when he heard that John was delivered up, he withdrew into Galilee; leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is by the sea."  (The sea of Galilee)  "In the borders of Zebulun and Naphtali."  That territory was given to those two tribes.  "That it might be fulfilled which was spoken through  Isaiah the prophet, saying, the land of Zebulun, and the land of Naphtali, toward the sea."  Again, that it might be fulfilled as spoken of through the prophet.  "The land of Zebulun, and the land of Naphtali, toward the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; the people that sat in darkness saw a great light; and to them that sat in the region and shadow of death to them did light spring up."  Meaning that Jesus went to that territory, and those that sat in darkness, in the way of sin, they saw a great light, Christ came into their territory.  "From that time began Jesus to preach, and to say, Repent ye:  For the kingdom of heaven is at hand."  Now, you would probably think from reading only Matthew's account that Jesus did not start preaching until after John was delivered up.  But from the gospel of John, we learn to the contrary that Jesus was teaching before John was put in prison.  But look at verse twelve again.  "Now when he heard that John was delivered up, he withdrew into Galilee."  It would be easy to conclude that from Matthew’s reading that he did not do any preaching until John was delivered up.  But John's account shows that Jesus was teaching before John was delivered up.  Matthew does not say that he did not teach any until John was delivered up, but it just talks about John being delivered up. 


Verse seventeen, "From that time began Jesus to preach, and to say, Repent ye:  For the kingdom of heaven is at hand, and  walking by the sea of Galilee, he saw two brethren, Simon who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea:  For they were fishers.  And he saith unto  them, Come ye after me, and I will make you fishers of men." Now, Jesus had had association with these brethren prior to this time.  Remember from John chapter one that Andrew was one of those two disciples that followed Jesus when John said to them, behold, the Lamb of God that  taketh away the sins of the world.  One that followed him was Andrew, and he went and found his brother Peter.  And, of course, the other one was the apostle John himself.  And so Jesus had had association with these disciples prior to this time, but he calls them to full‑time ministry.  "And walking about the sea of Galilee.  He saw two brethren, Simon who is called Peter."  And Jesus is the one that called him Peter.  "And Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea:  For they were fishermen."  They were not fishers who would just get a few fish for the family, that was their business of catching fish and selling them for a living.  "And he saith unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you fishers of men.  And they straightway left their nets, and followed him.  And going on from thence, he saw two other brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them.  And they straightway left the boat and their father, and followed him."  And, of course, these two brothers also had prior association with Jesus.  And let us see, I do not believe we will take the time to read the parallels of that. 


Verse twenty‑three, "And Jesus went about in all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and   preaching the gospel of the kingdom and healing all manner of disease and all manner of sickness among the people.  And the report of him went forth into all Syria."  Syria, of course, is a foreign country, bordering Israel on the northeast.  And so the report goes forth into all of Syria.  "And they brought unto him all that were sick, holden with divers diseases and torments, possessed with demons, and epileptic, and palsy; and he healed them."  How people can read the many references about all the healing that Christ and his apostles did, including the raising of the dead, and then believe that people have  miraculous power to heal the diseases of man today, I do not see how they can believe such.  The people in the countries around Jerusalem, went to be healed of their diseases in that slow day of travel and communication.  If a man could actually heal, it would go on CNN and other networks, and in a matter of a short period of time, there would be people present from about every nation unto heaven.  In a few hours there would be millions of sick people to be healed of their diseases!  "And there followed him great multitudes from Galilee, and Decapolis, and Jerusalem, and Judaea, and from beyond the Jordan." 


And then chapters five, six and seven give the long discourse that Jesus gave in teaching the multitudes that were following him, that is referred to as the Sermon on the Mount.  I believe we will wait about reading the Sermon on the Mount for now and turn now and read some from the gospel of John.  We have already talked about that John's gospel is very different from the synoptic gospels, and it looks like John may purposely have put in some things that Matthew, Mark and Luke did not mention that were very  important, and, further, that John wrote much later than the event of the Roman soldiers making war against Jerusalem in 70 A.D.  We know definitely that those three books were written before 70 A.D.  And according to early writers, Matthew must have written at an early date, around 50 A.D.  Luke had written his  gospel account before he wrote the book of Acts,  and it looks like in 62 or 63, he had completed the book of Acts (Acts 28:30-31).  And so Luke probably wrote the gospel account while Paul was in prison at Caesarea.  That would have given him the opportunity to talk to many eyewitnesses, which he did as given in Luke 1:1‑4.  And if so, the time of Luke would have been about 58 or 59. And according to early writers Mark wrote down the preaching of Peter and that he wrote to the Gentile people and especially to those in Rome. So it looks like that the late sixries would be a good probable date for Mark's gospel. 


Then John's gospel was much  later, probably in the late 80s or early 90s.  John, does not mention the destruction of Jerusalem in any way.  Surely if he had written before 70 A.D., he would have mentioned that event.  And it looks like he would have mentioned that event, since it was such a tragic event for the nation of Israel if he had written soon after that event. John 19:14-16 strongly indicates that John wrote a long time after the destruction of Jerusalem, when Jewish time had been replaced by Roman time.  And I believe we called attention to this reference in the first class session. There are several points of internal evidence which strongly indicates that the five books of John were the last books of the New Testament. 


John's gospel account is very different from the others.  It is very different from the others in the  way that John gives titles and descriptions of Jesus.  He describes him and gives titles to him, way beyond all three of the synoptic writers. For instance here in chapter one, "Christ is the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  The same was in the beginning with God.  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that hath been made."  Verse four, "In him was life; and the life was the light of the world."  So Christ is the Word.  Christ is the light, meaning spiritual light, and the “life in him was light  So Christ is the word.  Christ is the light.  And further the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.  We beheld him as the only begotten of the Father.  And I can remember when I thought those references, only begotten of the Father referred to the virgin birth of Christ.  But in Acts 13:33,  Paul quotes from Psalms 2:7 of the prophecy concerning Christ, “this day have I begotten thee  And he applies it to the resurrection of Christ from the dead.  And so then John points out Jesus in verse twenty‑nine, "Behold the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sins of the world."  And going back to Exodus twelve, the Passover lamb was a type of the Christ to come as stated by Paul in I Corinthians 5:7, “for even Christ our Passover hath been sacrificed for us”  Then again verse thirty‑five, "Again on the morrow. John was standing with two of his disciples (Andrew and John himself), and he looked upon Jesus as he walked and saith, Behold the Lamb of God!  And they turned and followed him." 


In chapter four of John, Jesus talks to the Samaritan woman at Jacob's well about how he could give her  living water.  And so Jesus is the living water.  And in John the sixth chapter, it says “I am the bread of life.  Your Father gave you bread in the wilderness, but I am the true bread that came down out of heaven.”  So Christ is the bread of life.  They ate the manna in the wilderness and died.  Jesus said, those who eat this bread shall never die.  Further in chapter ten of John, he is spoken of as the shepherd of the sheep that would lay down his life for the sheep.  “My father loves me, for I lay down my life for the sheep.”  And so Jesus is the good shepherd.  And he is the door to the sheepfold, also in John chapter ten.  And in John the eleventh chapter, "I am the resurrection and the life."  And John fourteen, "I am the way, the truth and the light."  And so that is one of the peculiar  features of the gospel of John, referring to Jesus in so many different ways.  And remember that the gospel of John actually does not cover many of the days of the ministry of Christ. I believe I stated how that chapters thirteen through nineteen of the gospel of John cover only about one day in the life of Jesus.  But what John does record is very important for all of us.  Instead of telling about the virgin birth of Christ, John begins his gospel by calling attention to the preexistence of Christ.  "That in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."  And so Jesus is God.  "The same was in the beginning with God."  Meaning that he was with God the Father and with the Holy Spirit. It may be that anti Christ, who were saying that Christ had not come in the flesh were already doing this evil work when John wrote his gospel, and that is why he talks about the preexistence of Christ, and that the Word became flesh. See also I John 2:18, 2:23, 2:26, 4:1-3; and II John 7. "All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that hath been made." 


There are a number of references that speak of Christ doing the actual work of creation.  In Hebrews 1:2, the writer says, “through whom God also made the worlds  And in Colossians one and, I believe, verse eighteen, “he is before all things and in him all things consist.”  And then there are a number of other references that teach that the actual work of creation was created by Christ, that God made the worlds through him.  So evidently the plan was God's in the creation of the world, and Christ was the one to carry out the plans of the actual creation, and the Holy Spirit must have put the finishing touches to God's creation.  “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.  And the earth was without form and void.  And darkness was upon the face of the deep, and God said, let there be light.  And there was light.” And so God, in the beginning, created the heavens and the earth.  The Hebrew word for God there, I believe they say, is plural.  And I did not get all the verse that I  intended to get.  “And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the water.”  So don't you think that would be the Holy Spirit that had a part in the creation?  And then you get down to verse twenty‑six, and we know that there is more than one involved.  For it says that God said, “let us make man in our image after our likeness.”  And then there is a reference, I believe, in Job that says, “by his Spirit hath he garnished the heavens.”  It looks like the Holy Spirit must have put the finishing touches to creation. 


We know that is the case in respect to the gospel scheme of redemption, that it was God's plan. “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish but have everlasting life”.  But Christ willingly gave himself to be that sin offering for man, and then the Holy Spirit came on the apostles and guided them into all truth.  So very definitely, in respect to the gospel scheme of redemption, the Holy Spirit has done that finishing work of guiding the apostles and other inspired  men into all the truth and giving “them signs and wonders” to confirm the messages that they gave (Hebrews 2:3-4). 


So back to John 1:4, "In him was life; and the life was the light of men."  In chapter 8:12 of this book Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. He that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”  And so Christ is the light of men.  He is the light of spiritual insight.  "And the light shineth in the darkness; and the darkness apprehended it not."  It shineth in the darkness of the world, men going the way of sin.  "And the darkness apprehended it not.  There came a man from God, whose name was John.  The same came for a witness, that he might bear witness of the Light, that all might believe through him."  (Christ)  "He was not the light."  John the Baptist was not the light, but he came to bear witness of the light.  "He was not the Light, but came that he might bear witness of the Light.  There was the true Light, even the light that lighteth every man coming into the world.  He was in the world, and the world was made through him, and the world knew him not.  He came unto his own, and they that were his own received him not.  But as many as received him, to them he gave the right to become children of God, even to them that believe on his name." And, again, according to that false doctrine of premillennialism, they say that Christ came to his own, and he had intended to establish his kingdom, but the Jewish people, as a people, rejected him, so he did not establish his kingdom.  And he ushered in the church age, and that we're now living in the church age, and the kingdom is yet to come. 


Well, how were the Colossians “translated, out of the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of his dear Son,” if the kingdom of Christ was not present when the gospel was preached to them, (Colossians 1:13)?  Jesus used the word church and kingdom  interchangeably in Matthew 16:18-19, where he said to Peter that, upon this rock, meaning the bedrock of truth, that Peter had confessed that thou art the Christ of the Son of the living God.  “I will build my church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.  And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatsoever thou shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven  And so in that reference, Jesus was using the church and the kingdom interchangeably.  And so Christ established his church, his kingdom.  It was fully established on that first Pentecost after the resurrection and ascension of Christ.  "He came unto his own."  And the Jewish people as a whole rejected Jesus but remember there must have been at least twenty thousand of Jewish believers in a matter of a short time after the gospel was first preached on Pentecost.  "He came unto his own, and they that were his own received him not."  And, again, if Christ was not able ‑‑ He is God, and  if he was not able to do what he came to do the first time, then what assurance would we have that he could do what he wanted to do a second time.  That doctrine is ridiculous!  "He came unto his own, and they that were his own received him not.  But as many as received him, to them gave he the right to become children of God, even to them that believe on his name."  Now, believe in a number of passages is spoken of as meaning everything in respect to a person believing in such a way that they do everything that the Lord commands them to do in order to be saved.  It is not just an intellectual faith, as many  passages show.  And remember in James chapter two, that James said that the devils believed and trembled.  If just an intellectual faith will save a man, even the devil's will be saved.  "But as many as received him, to them he gave the right to become children of God, even to them that believe on his name:  Who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God."  In other words, a spiritual birth; not a fleshly birth, but a spiritual birth. 


"And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father,) full of grace and truth."  So the Word became flesh, and that occurred when Jesus was born of the virgin Mary.  John beareth witness of him, and crieth, saying, “This was he of whom I said, He that cometh after me is come before me, for he was before me.  For of his fullness we all received, and grace for grace.  For the law was given through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus Christ."  Now, that does not mean there was not any grace and truth back under the law of Moses, but such kindness and such  grace as the gift of God for our salvation.  Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.  "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him."  And remember again in Hebrews chapter one where the writer states in the American Standard Version, that “Christ is the brightness of his glory and the express image of his person.”  I mean, the King James.  I keep getting the King James and the American Standard mixed up.  But, anyway, Christ came to show God.  Christ has showed the kind of God that God is.  "And this is the witness of John, when the Jews sent unto him from Jerusalem priests and Levites to ask him, Who art thou?  And he confessed, and denied not; and he confessed, I am not the Christ.  And they asked him, What then?  Art thou Elijah?"  And remember that reference from Malachi chapter four verses five and six that Elijah would come before that great and notable day would come, but that reference was that John would come, and you can see why they ask the question about Elijah.  "And he saith I am not.  Art thou the prophet?  And he answered, no.  They said therefore unto him, Who art thou?  That we may give an answer to them that sent us.  What sayest thou of thyself?" And notice his reply.  "He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said Isaiah the prophet.  And they had been sent from the Pharisees."  The Pharisees made up their minds very early that they were against Christ, and they had rejected the baptism of John, and as a religious group they rejected Christ.  "And they asked him, and said unto him, Why then baptizeth thou, if thou are not the Christ, neither Elijah, neither the prophet?"


Now, note that John said, I am not Elijah, but he did come in the spirit and likeness of the Old Testament prophet Elijah, and that was the meaning of Malachi, chapter four verses five and six.  John the Baptist would come to turn the people, which thing he did. "John answered them, saying, I baptize with water;  in the midst of you, standing one, whom ye know not; even Jesus cometh after me, the latchet of whose shoe's I am not worthy to unloose.  These things were done in Bethany beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing.  On the morrow, he seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the world."  Now, remember that Jesus and John the Baptist were cousins.  John the Baptist was about six months older than Jesus.  But John did not know that Jesus was the Christ until the Spirit descended upon him when he was baptized.  And notice that he tells us that.  Verse thirty, "This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man who is become before me:  For he was before me.  And I knew him not; but that he should be made manifest to  Israel, for this cause came I baptizing with water."  Now, John knew that the Christ was to be manifest to Israel, and he knew that that was the purpose of his ministry,  but he did not know definitely that Jesus was the  one until the Spirit descended upon him when he was baptized.  Verse thirty‑two, "John bare witness, saying, I have beheld the Spirit descending as a dove, out of heaven, and it abode upon him.  And I knew him not:  But he that sent me to baptize in water, he said unto me, Upon whomsoever thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and abiding upon him, the same is he that baptizes in the Holy Spirit."  So when Jesus was baptized, the Holy Spirit descended as a dove upon him, and then John knew that he was then the Lamb of God, that he was the Christ that had come to take away the sins of the world.  "I have seen and have bore witness that this is the Son of God."  Now, all of this that you have read here, I believe I am right in saying that they are all peculiar to the gospel of John. 


"Again on the morrow John was standing, and two of his  disciples; and he looked upon Jesus as he walked, and saith Behold the Lamb of God!"  In substance, John is saying follow him, he is the one that is greater than I am.  "And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.  And Jesus turned, and beheld him following, and saith unto them, What seek ye?  And they saith unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Teacher,) where abidest thou?  He saith to them, Come and ye shall see. They came therefore and saw where he abode, and they abode with him that day:  It was about the tenth hour.  One of the two that heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother.  He findeth first his own brother Simon and saith unto him." Notice that John does not speak of himself in the first person, but you can see by the way he is talking, that it would have to be him.  "Two disciples heard him speak, and they followed him." And then he says that one of them was Andrew.  "One of the two that heard John speak, followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother.  He findeth first his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messiah, which is, being interpreted, Christ."  Evidently, Andrew did not have the ability as a teacher as Peter, because we do not have any account of him doing much teaching like Peter did, but notice what he did, he went and found his brother.  When you think about personal evangelism, think of the gospel of John.  Andrew went and found his brother Simon.  "And he brought him unto Jesus.  And Jesus looked upon him and said, Thou art Simon the son of John:  thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, Peter."  So the Lord changed Simon's name to Peter.  "On the morrow he was minded to go forth into Galilee, and he findeth Philip." And notice again Philip.  "And Jesus saith unto him, Follow me."  And Philip goes and findeth his brother Nathanael.  "Now Philip was from Bethsaida of the city of Andrew and Peter.  Philip findeth Nathanael, and said unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and in the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.  And Nathanael said unto him, Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?  Philip saith unto him, Come and see. Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!  Nathanael saith unto him, Whence knowest thou me?  Jesus answered and said unto him, Before Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee.  Nathanael answered him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel."  And I think we would be right in saying that verse forty‑nine shows that Nathanael was the first one to confess that Jesus is the Son of God.  "Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of  Israel.  Jesus answered and said unto him, Because I said unto thee, I saw thee underneath the fig tree, believest thou?  Thou shalt see greater things than these.  And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye shall see the heavens open and the angels of God descending upon the Son of man." Don't you think verse fifty‑one will be fulfilled at the second advent of Christ, when he will come with his holy angels?  Our time is up for this last period of this class session.  So we will plan on beginning and reading  some more in the gospel of John, then back to Matthew, after we have read from John awhile.  Thank you for your good attention.