The description of Jesus' earthly mission to this point is recorded in the first 20 chapters of Matthew. The apostle now devotes 8 chapters (nearly 30% of the book) to record the final week of Jesus' earthly mission and it all starts with Jesus' provocative entry into Jerusalem along with an inciting visit to the temple. Provocative and inciting because of the daring declaration Jesus makes: I am your King, I am God, I bring you salvation; not just for Israel, but also for all nations.
Special rights, benefits, and advantages are granted to people of privilege. And our world has a strong definition of what constitutes privilege. In today’s passage Jesus gives us the true definition of privilege.
After 400 years of silence since the prophet Malichi, God speaks to the people of Israel. John the Baptist comes onto the scene proclaiming a message of repentance and pointing to the coming ministry of Christ. This message described how God would draw near to his people and identify them, no longer through ethnicity, but through his awesome act of mercy received by repentance and faith. This message spread beyond the boundaries of Israel to the world and continues still today as God calls all nations to confess, repent, and be baptized.
** Due to technical difficulties this weeks sermon audio is missing some sections ** In Exodus 34, in the wake of Israel's blatant rebellion and adultery against God, we see God renew the covenant. But this does not happen until after he lays the foundational reason for why he will renew: he tells us explicitly who he is and what he is like with his own lips. Furthermore, this display of God's glory points distinctly to the glory that will someday be revealed in his children through the atoning work of Christ.
As Moses once again verbalizes his inadequacies to lead God’s rescue of Israel, God strongly verbalizes and physically displays his total control of the entire mission. This passage presents us a strong example of the God of the Bible: The LORD says what he will do and then does exactly what he says. Despite our broken world, the God of the Bible can be trusted above all; he is most reliable.