What kind of king? what kind of kingdom? Matthew 11:1 - 14:12 (part 2)

Matthew 11 and 12; What kind of king?

(Read Matt. 11:1-6)
Let's consider this Gospel information about our King and His new kind of Kingdom in a little more detail. We noted earlier that a natural take on Jesus as Messiah of Israel might be negative. Even though he worked many miracles, especially in the countryside, he never harnessed his exploits to turn them into political clout. He never really took the next step...or took advantage of miracle working ability by translating it into a formidable political movement. Remember Jesus is presented to Israel as the would-be-messiah who will end up getting himself rejected and crucified without ever mustering the political and organizational oomph to spring his own cousin from jail. Jesus' reticence to pull the right political strings will quickly result in John's arbitrary execution! "WHY SUCH INCOMPETENCE?" a zealot for God's rule might be tempted to cry out. But thankfully as we look at this King there is a better perspective and a better response, one motivated by the Holy Spirit. (Read 11:1-6 again)

(Read Matt 11:7-30)
As you read chapter 11 did you notice Jesus used the image of children in two different ways. Once in Matt. 11:16 He uses the image of children as non-receptive brats who refuse the truth from God no matter how it is "packaged" in reference to religious people who would not receive God's message from John or from Jesus himself. Then we find Jesus using and image of children in Matt. 11:25. This time using a word for infants, Jesus refers to the simple who receive his teaching, as opposed to those who think they are to "mature" to receive it. (Read 7-30 again)

(Read Matt. 12:1-21)
After a glimpse of the extraordinary authority of Jesus from the end of chapter 11 through 12:7 we go on to learn how this authority is to be strangely expressed by the uniquely Spirit-moved-King.

...the Pharisees went out and conspired against Him, as to how they might destroy Him. But Jesus, aware of this, withdrew from there. Many followed Him, and He healed them all, and warned them not to tell who He was. This was to fulfill what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet: "BEHOLD, MY SERVANT WHOM I HAVE CHOSEN; MY BELOVED IN WHOM MY SOUL is WELL-PLEASED; I WILL PUT MY SPIRIT UPON HIM, AND HE SHALL PROCLAIM JUSTICE TO THE GENTILES. "HE WILL NOT QUARREL, NOR CRY OUT; NOR WILL ANYONE HEAR HIS VOICE IN THE STREETS. "A BATTERED REED HE WILL NOT BREAK OFF, AND A SMOLDERING WICK HE WILL NOT PUT OUT, UNTIL HE LEADS JUSTICE TO VICTORY. "AND IN HIS NAME THE GENTILES WILL HOPE." ....(Read 12:1-21 again)
(Read Mat. 12:22-32)
The Spirit as spoken of by Isaiah is what quickens the King and qualifies the Kingdom. we learn the unpardonable shortcoming is to reject this "spiritualness" as the true expression of the Kings authority. We observe this Spirit in the whole approach of Jesus to being king. It is a Spirit which moves in Jesus' mode of operation.And it is a Spirit which can finally drive out those sickly motivators which have plagued Israel and kept Her from being the light to the nations. (Read 12:22-32 again)

(Read Mat. 12:33-37)
Now adding onto what we read in 22 ff; to say anything against this way of rescuing Israel is to say a"worthless word" for which men will be judged. It is to say a word that does not encourage loyalty to Jesus Messiah. It is to say a word against the cause of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.(Read 12:33-37 again)

(Read Matt 12:38-50)
Men want a bigger and bolder sign of being the King. But they will receive no sign that he is the King except his death...and not even his resurrection will be harnessed for a lesser spirit of political reign.

As a resurrected miracle worker he really could have put together an insurrection and gone back into Jerusalem, messed those dudes up, and then sailed straight for Rome. But no; the sign of His resurrection, though it is a vindication of his anointed life, would not be made a hobby horse for a cause so unlike that which the Spirit would have you and I follow Jesus in.

This is it! He is the King, by this other kind of motivation, one which gives room for perfect loyalty to God so that this King can also afford to be perfectly loyal to men. He is "the faith". The Israel that does not enthrone Him will be taken up by a worse oppression than before. And the Israel that does the will of Jesus' father in heaven will be his closest family members.(Read 12:38-50 again)

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