THE GOSPEL OF Matthew
In his gospel, Matthew shows that Jesus is the long-expected Messiah of Israel, the only one with a right to the throne of David.
The book does not claim to be a complete biography of Christ’s life on earth. It begins with His genealogy and early years, then jumps to the beginning of His public ministry when He was about thirty. Guided by the Holy Spirit, Matthew selects those aspects of the Savior’s life and ministry which proclaim Him as God’s Anointed One—for that is what the title “Messiah” means.
The book moves toward a climax—the trial, death, burial, resurrection, and ascension of the Lord Jesus. And in that climax, of course, is laid the foundation for man’s salvation. That is why the book is called a “gospel”—not so much because it explains the way by which sinful man may receive eternal salvation, but rather because it describes the sacrificial work of Christ by which our salvation was made possible.
We do not know when Matthew wrote this book, whether it was AD 40 or 70 or at some time in between. And even if we did, this information would not add to our enjoyment of it or benefit from it. We have purposely avoided the so-called “critical problems”—that is, the questions concerning the sources and history of the text. Our purpose is to concentrate on the exposition of the text as it is found in our Bibles.
This course and commentary seeks to stimulate independent study and meditation. Most of all, it is aimed at creating in the reader’s heart an intense longing for the return of the King.
*Not in the Emmaus Road