Abundant Grace

Have you ever really considered God’s untold power? (Matthew 22:23-33) It was only moments later, while Jesus was still in the Temple complex of Jerusalem, that He was poked by some sharp questions about paying taxes. Luh! Still, it is something we all must do. Matthew 22:23~The same day Sadducees came to him, who say that there is no resurrection, and they asked him a question. We need to understand the Sadducees are sad because they do not believe in angels or the resurrection of the dead. Daniel 12:2~Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. (NIV) 

That’s a great verse to share that there is life in Jesus Christ. Though this is an Old Testament scripture that speaks apocalyptically of the end times, the Sadducees, sadly reject it. For they only accepted the first five books of the Old Testament as scripture. Sadducees only accept the Torah or Pentateuch. Now Torah means teaching AKA the law, or the Five Books of Ole Mo. The rest of the Old Testament is broken into two more parts the Nevi’im Prophets, and the Ketuvim or Writings. Collectively known as this TaNaKh. 

Sadducees reject all resurrection because they don’t find it in the Torah. Thus, they ask Jesus a question they think will reveal the absurdity of believing in the resurrection. Matthew 22:24~Teacher, Moses said, If a man dies having no children, his brother must marry the widow and raise up offspring for his brother. (ESV) According to the Law, the next living male relative has this responsibility. Deuteronomy 25:5~If brothers are living together and one of them dies without a son, his widow must not marry outside the family. Her husband’s brother shall…marry her…(NIV) Deuteronomy 25:6~The first son she bears shall carry on the name of the dead brother…(NIV) 

Imagine if you had to marry your sister-in-law. Some of you ought to raise your hands and thank the Lord for grace. The truth is we all ought to truly thank the Lord for His many blessings in our lives. Why not take time to call out to the Lord today and thank Him for His wonderful grace. It is because of the work of Jesus at Calvary, fulfilling the law that we are freed from its obligations. Grace is truly a wonder, even the best gift we have ever received. As we remain socially conscious of all that is going on in our world, we need to be reminded that every good and perfect gift is from God. Take time to thank God for the blessings in your life today.



Surviving the storm

Jesus stands at the Jewish epicenter of faith, there inside the Temple, Christ teaches, sharing with the parishioners some of the attributes from Heaven’s Kingdom. Our Lord is in the last week of His life on earth and His adversaries are subversively on the move. Once bitter rivals jockeying for prominence, these unlikely foes have become fast friends forced to uniting under one long and loathsome goal. Mark 3:6~Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus. (NIV) 

In this corner the Herodians, a family rife of tradition and knowledge, a familiarity woven of Jewish stock. They have tethered themselves to the occupation ruling under the Roman umbrella. Joining their corner, in an attempt to create a formidable tag team of the most unlikely of friends thus far in the fledgling century; Peter, Paul, and Mary performing their hit when the ship comes in. Sorry, that’s the wrong manifest, oh yeah it’s the religious institution of faith, the Pharisees, scribes, and Sadducees. Their commonality is the hatred of freedom found in what Jesus Christ is creating and offering to the world, which is forcing them into an unholy alliance. Mark 8:15~Be careful, Jesus warned them. Watch out for the yeast of the Pharisees and that of Herod. (NIV) For this is God’s only Son who has come striding atop the waves of life’s many seas, to set His people free. 

Luke 1:68~Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people (ESV) Quoting Isaiah 61:1~The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, (ESV) Christ speaks of salvation’s precious work for He was to proclaim freedom to captives and to save those drowning in their own sin. For these fast but unlikely friends to accomplish the much needed and deeply saddening task laying at their shore, they must discredit Christ, or cause Him to falter in the faith, and if they arrive at the end of the dock, kill Him. This is More Than They Asked For: as old Billy said in his play The Tempest, Misery acquaints a man with strange bedfellows. And, Yes, these fellows who have shipwrecked their lives on the shore of self-desire are indeed strange bedfellows. 

During these trying times, I want to ask you to take the time to listen. Listen to the Lord as He shares someone to reach out to. First pray for them, their family, and a need you may be aware of. Then text, email, or write them a card. If you want to get truly old school, then reach out and touch someone. Before going anywhere, this is how we said we are going to call a person last century. Let’s all stay connected with our many options of social media and technology. Be a blessing even while in isolation.



Messiah — More Than They Asked — Matthew 22.23-46 — Handout — 032220

Jesus stands at the Jewish_______ of faith, the Temple, sharing attributes from Heaven’s Kingdom. Where once bitter rivals have united. Mark 3:6~Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus. (NIV) Their commonality is a hatred for the_______ found in Christ. Facing some difficult questions Jesus gives them More Than They Asked: as He shares Untold Power, The Greatest, and The_____. 

1) Consider _____ Untold Power (22:23-33) Understand the Sadducees are sad because they do not believe in angels or the ____________. They one accepted only the first ____ books of the Old Testament, Torah or Pentateuch. Matthew 22:24~…If a man dies having no children, his brother must marry the widow and raise up offspring for his brother. (ESV) The Law says the next son carries on the_______ (some are even more grateful for grace). So, who gets her in the Ressurection? Matthew 22:30~For in the resurrection they______ marry nor are given in marriage, but are_____angels in heaven. (ESV)  1 Corinthians 15:44~…If there is a natural body, there is also a________body. (NIV) on earth, death reigns; therefore, we must have marriage to produce children & continue the human race, but in heaven that will not be necessary, because in heaven we have eternal life. Exodus 3:6~…he said I am the God of your_______, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. (ESV) That is why Jesus adds in Matthew 22:32b~…He is not God of the _ dead, but of the _______. (ESV) We clearly see Jesus is much______ with far more biblical knowledge than their highly-educated religious leaders. For wisdom, ask God. 

2) The Greatest Command (22:34-40) Jesus has silenced the Sadducees. So the Pharisees are up next asking in Matthew 22:36~Teacher, which is the great command? (ESV) Jesus responds with part of the_______ found in Deuteronomy 6:4-9. The Shema is to be quoted______. Matthew 22:37~And he said to him, You shall love the Lord your God with____…(ESV) This means a person must love God with his/her______ being. 1 John 4:20~If anyone says, I love God, and hates his brother, he is a_____; Jesus is saying to them everything hangs on love, and I will_____________this for you, on Friday.

3) The Who of Jesus (22:41-46) Matthew 22:41-42~Jesus asked…What do you think about the Christ…Whose____ is he?…(ESV) It’s common knowledge the Messiah will be a__________of David. Jeremiah 23:5~I will raise up for David a__________Branch…(NIV) In Psalm 110 David calls Messiah, Lord (master/owner) Matthew 22:45 ~If then David calls him Lord, how is he his son? (ESV) Making Messiah more than just a physical_________ of David. Jesus’ question is meant to reveal that Messiah is Lord over all, and Israel’s greatest king acknowledges this under the__________of the Holy Spirit. John 1:1~In the_________was the Word, the Word was with God, the Word was God. (NIV) Jesus Christ has always been one with God the Father. John 1:14~The Word became flesh…who came from the Father full of______&______ (NIV) Our Takeaway:____________________________________________.  Romans 1:17, Galatians 3:8, Hebrews 10:38 …the Just, the righteous walk & live by faith.