The importance of the Gospel of Matthew in church history cannot be overstated. For Jewish readers, it affirmed the Messiahship of Jesus, referring consistently to the Scriptures to establish his credentials. For Gentile disciples, it provided powerful and dramatic support of their inclusion in God’s kingdom. The cross of Christ had removed the division between Jew and non-Jew, and through Matthew’s writings, we see Israel’s God drawing the entire world to himself through Jesus.
“The Gospel according to Matthew . . . Was the most widely read and frequently used of any of the four Gospels in the formative years of the church,” writes Michael Wilkins. In this volume of the NIV Application Commentary, Wilkins explains Matthew’s broad appeal not only to his ancient readers, but also to us today. Exploring the links between the Bible and our own times, Wilkins shares perspectives on Matthew’s Gospel that reveal its enduring relevance for our twenty-first century lives.
“Makarios is a state of existence in relationship to God in which a person is ‘blessed’ from God’s perspective even when he or she doesn’t feel happy or isn’t presently experiencing good fortune. This does not mean a conferral of blessing or an exhortation to live a life worthy of blessing; rather, it is an acknowledgment that the ones indicated are blessed.3 Negative feelings, absence of feelings, or adverse conditions cannot take away the blessedness of those who exist in relationship with God.” (Page 204)
“Worry is inappropriate or wrong when it is misdirected, is in wrong proportion, or indicates a lack of trust in God. It is this latter sense that Jesus addresses here.” (Page 297)
“The first temptation undertakes to get at the core of Jesus’ personal trust in the Father’s leading.” (Page 158)
“The context of the SM is Jesus’ inauguration of the kingdom of heaven.” (Page 191)
“‘Mercy’ is not giving to a person what he deserves, while ‘grace’ is giving to a person what he does not deserve.” (Page 625)
This is the pulpit commentary for the twenty-first century.
—George K. Brushaber, president, Bethel College and Seminary
The NIV Application Commentary meets the urgent need for an exhaustive and authoritative commentary based on the New International Version. This series will soon be found in libraries and studies throughout the evangelical community.
—James Kennedy, Senior Minister, Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church
It is encouraging to find a commentary that is not only biblically trustworthy but also contemporary in its application. The NIV Application Commentary will prove to be a helpful tool in the pastor’s sermon preparation. I use it and recommend it.
—Charles F. Stanley, pastor, First Baptist Church of Atlanta
The tools, ideas, and insights contained in this volume will help preachers communicate God’s Word and understand the Gospel in the context of contemporary culture, and the exegetical, literary, and grammatical summaries will benefit scholars and students of the Bible. What’s more, with Logos, Scripture passages are linked to Greek and Hebrew texts, along with English translations, and the powerful search tools provide instant access to the information you need for research projects, sermon preparation, and personal study.