Matthew 11–13: Compassion & Confrontation

Read the Bible in 2011 ◊ Week 5: Saturday

Today’s Bible reading is Matthew 11–13, the third section of this Gospel. Matthew 11:1a states, “When Jesus had finished giving instructions…” You’ll find similar phrases in 7:28, 13:53, 19:1 and 26:1, that mark the end of a teaching discourse by Jesus. R. E. Nixon writes that the various teachings are arranged topically:

“The first discourse is basically ethical, the second missionary, the third kerygmatic [proclamation of the Gospel], the fourth ecclesiastical and the third eschatological.”1

Look for key words or phrases: king, kingdom; Son of David, Son of God, Son of Man; fulfill, fulfilled; and compassion. In chapter 13, parable(s) will be repeated. Look in these chapters for places because Jesus compares those hearing and seeing Him with cities and nations who were judged by God in the Old Testament: Tyre, Sidon, Sodom and Ninevah. (You may recognize some of those places because they’ve been in this week’s Old Testament readings). Matthew will mention prophecies Jesus fulfilled in all three chapters.

Chapter 11 is about John, Jesus and the generation to which they came. In chapter 12, Jesus has confrontations with the Pharisees. In chapter 13 , Jesus tells parables about the kingdom.

One thing I noticed is that for the second time, Jesus quotes Hosea 6:6 to the Pharisees, “I DESIRE COMPASSION, AND NOT A SACRIFICE,” He did this in Matthew 9:13, and now in 12:7. The contrast between the compassion Jesus had for the weary and heavy laden and His confrontation of those whose religion was only for show is marked and is constant. Watch for it. Think about it.

Read Matthew 11:28-30. Who is it that Jesus invites? Why does He invite them? What do they need to do? What will they find? Why?

Are you excluded from His invitation?

Isaiah 42 Photograph: – Free High Resolution Photos for Christian Publications
The Sower (Le semeur), James Tissot: No known copyright restrictions.
1R. E. Nixon, “Matthew,” The New Bible Commentary: Revised, D. Guthrie, J. A. Motyer, eds.,
A. M. Stibbs, D. J. Wiseman, contributing eds., p. 813.
The Disciples Eat Wheat on the Sabbath (Les disciples mangent du blé au sabbat), James Tissot:
No known copyright restrictions.

Original content: Copyright ©2011 Iwana Carpenter

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