Matthew 23:37 Plenty of Room

Matthew 23:37 (KJV)
O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!

Jesus, in this chapter, issues one woe after another against the Scribes and Pharisees. At one point He even intimates that it would be impossible for them to escape hell. But He ends the chapter addressing Jerusalem as a whole and doing so in an emotional rather than harsh tone. Though the city would not gather under His wings as it were, there was compassion. With compassion, I believe comes opportunity for mercy.

There are some who have so engrained themselves in error that the hope of their conversion is far fetched at best. But among them there are some, maybe many, whose hardness is not so set they cannot be won.

Appeal to the multitudes to come to Jesus. Trust in His compassion and pray for them to gather near Christ.

There is plenty of room and mercy sufficient for all who do.

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Matthew 23:37 Plenty of Room

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Matthew 22:9 Come Well Dressed

Matthew 22:9 (KJV)
Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.

This parable makes it so obvious who the called are that even Calvinist John Gill claims them to be the Jews.

They were called of God for the wonderful purpose of presenting to the world the Scriptures and for delivering into the world the Lamb of God.  They had the benefit of dozens of generations hearing from God.

But being called is not the same as being bidden. The benefits extended to them gave them no right to ignore that vital moment when they were invited “in.”

I note that though they were bidden first, they were not bidden alone. The invitation to the wedding extended to those who were called and to as many others as could be found. The lesson is clear. The Gospel is not only for those who are the called or the elect; the Gospel is for whosoever will.

Come dressed in the righteousness of Christ, of course, but come one and come all.

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Matthew 22:9 Come Well Dressed

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Matthew 21:28-31 Be The First

Matthew 21:28-31 (KJV)
But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, Son, go work to day in my vineyard.
He answered and said, I will not: but afterward he repented, and went.
And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered and said, I go, sir: and went not.
Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you.

It would be pretty difficult not to see where this parable leads. Jesus is contrasting the Gentiles with Israel. Israel is that son who pretended to do the will of God but did not; from the Gentiles comes the son who, though at the first rebels, then repents and does God’s will.

I notice in a parable further down the chapter Jesus said, Matthew 21:43
Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.

It is not the Gentile nations that are given the kingdom. It is one new nation comprised of both Jews and Gentiles. It is that holy nation of faith in Christ.

Back to the first parallel, I want to be the first son. Mind you, I wished it were not true that I had rebelled at first but that is what I did. The Bible assures me that I am not the only one but that “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” That includes the Jew if he will admit it. Having seen my rebellious nature I repented and asked Christ to forgive and to save me.

 

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Matthew 21:28-31 Be The First

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Matthew 20:11 Resist the Ungrateful Nature

Matthew 20:11 (KJV)
And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house,

Notice the nature of man:

  • They murmured though they received
  • They received work to do
  • They received the wages they were promised
  • They received those wages in a timely manner

And still,
They murmured though he was a good man

  • He was fair, giving, and good hearted.
  • He was successful, industrious and ever quick to hire more labor.
  • He was prepared, available and inclined to pay for the labor rendered

Yet they murmured.

They murmured at the One who represents God
This good man is an illustration of God’s oversight of the kingdom of heaven. Is it not stunning that men murmur against such a good man as God? Are we not in awe that men would complain against the One who has showered grace upon sinners?

Let us learn from this text to resist this ungrateful nature within us.

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Matthew 20:11 Resist the Ungrateful Nature

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Matthew 12:7 Fingers Pointing Back

Matthew 12:7 (KJV)
But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless.

The Pharisees saw the disciples plucking corn on the Sabbath and challenged Jesus for it. After citing several Biblical examples of something similar to plucking corn on the Sabbath, Jesus pointed three fingers of judgment back at them.

A judgment against their ignorance
They did not know what the Bible, they claimed to be experts in means when it says, “I will have mercy and not sacrifice.”

A judgment against their judgment
Because they did not know what the Scripture means, they did what the Scripture taught them not to do. They judged and condemned others.

A judgment against their discernment
They were wrong for condemning in the first place but their error was compounded because those they condemned were guiltless.

  • They didn’t understand the Bible
  • They didn’t understand the nature of judgment and
  • They didn’t understand the difference between guilt and guiltlessness

Great harm is done by the one who presumes to be an expert in the Word of God but does not know the heart of God concerning mercy and religion.

 

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Matthew 12:7 Fingers Pointing Back

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Matthew 11:2-3 A Return to The Baptist

Matthew 11:2-3 (KJV)
Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples,
And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?

John the Baptist is marginalized by most of mainstream Christianity today. And I think there are a number of reasons for that:

  • John’s ministry emphasized holiness to an uncomfortable level for our compromised and comfortable Christian culture.
  • John forces universal church doctrine to consider the authority and mode of baptism
  • John the Baptist does not fit the popular notion that living for Christ leads to success in life ventures

I think the passage may be divided into:
John’s Question
Vs 2-3

John’s Answer
Vs 4-6

John’s Character
Vs 7-19

The Gospel begins with the preaching of John the Baptist. We would be wisest to return to his:

  • preaching,
  • philosophy of ministry and
  • personal character

in our modern ministries.

 

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Matthew 11:2-3 A Return to The Baptist

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Matthew 5:48 Bull’s Eye!

Matthew 5:48 (KJV)
Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

Romans 3:23 says For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. The word sinned is defined as missing the mark. Picture an archer’s target. The mark is the bull’s-eye. Most of us would think that hitting anywhere on the target would be acceptable. Not so according to the definition of sin. Sin is to miss the bull’s-eye.

The Pharisees were the best-known people of their day for practicing righteousness. They worked hard at it. They had disciplined themselves toward it. They held each other accountable for it, but they were not perfectly capable of it. They could hit the target as it were. They probably could hit the target better than anyone else alive in their day. But they did not hit the bull’s-eye. They were not perfect.

Jesus set before His hearers a difficult ideal; their righteousness must exceed that of the Pharisees. No, He set before than an impossible one, they were to be perfect as their Father in heaven is perfect. That is exactly what God promises in 2 Corinthians 5:21
For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Matthew 5:48 Bull’s Eye!

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Matthew 3:1 What Days They Were

Matthew 3:1 (KJV)
In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,

What wonderful days those days were.

  • Jesus had reached Maturity
  • John the Baptist was prepared for his ministry
  • God the Father’s own fullness of times had come

In those days:

  • Rome had occupied Israel
  • The Jews had turned their faith into idolatry and
  • The world had become open with roads and commerce

In those days:

  • God introduced to mankind the Messiah He promised so many of thousands of years before
  • The world would be forever changed by the message John was about to preach and
  • Salvation from sin would become a reality at Calvary.

The world changed in those days when one man stepped out of obscurity to do God’s will.

What days they were!

 

 

To my readers:
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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Matthew 3:1 What Days They Were

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