Passages: Matthew 1-7
Big Idea: Jesus, the long awaited promised King (Messiah), has come to save his people.
Ten lessons exploring Matthew 1-7.
The gospel of Matthew was written to a Jewish audience about the birth, life, death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus. Although the gospel is unnamed, it’s assumed that the author is Matthew the Tax Collector, whose story is highlighted in Matthew 9 and 10.
The gospel begins with Jesus’ family lineage. There are fourteen generations from Abraham to David, fourteen generations from David to the Babylonian exile and fourteen generations from the exile to Jesus. Jesus is an Israelite, son of Abraham, son of David. In chapter one Matthew recounts the angel’s declaration. God’s King has come. He is the Messiah - the Davidic King - the God man, Immanuel. The one who has come to be with his people and save his people from their sins.
Jesus' birth fulfils the Old Testament. The nations would come and worship the Messiah (Isaiah 60), the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem (Micah 5) and the Messiah would be born from a virgin (Isaiah 7).
He is the only one of whom God declares, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:17) He truly is the righteous one of Israel. The suffering servant who came to save sinners by dying in their place, paying the ransom for their sin.
Matthew parallels Moses and Jesus. Moses comes out of Egypt, crosses the Red Sea, wanders the desert, for 40 years climbs Mount Sinai and issues God’s law. Jesus comes out of Egypt, is baptised in the Jordan river, wanders the desert for 40 days, then climbs a mountain and re-issues God’s law. Jesus is the new Moses, who has come to teach God’s people how to live in God’s Kingdom. How to love God and love your neighbour.
Jesus comes to fulfil the law. The righteous one of Israel goes to the heart of God’s law. The sermon on the Mount peels everything back to expose our hearts. Because what matters to God is that we love him from our heart. That we love others from our heart. God's Word is not simply heard but obeyed, and obeyed from the heart.
The unit comes complete with stories, pictures, suggested songs/memory verses, games and drama activities, crafts, large and small group activities. A resource pack of crafts and worksheets is also included.