Dear 365 Readers,
Congratulations, today (9/28) we start reading in the New Testament!
Matthew, one of the four gospels we will read, is the first book of the New Testament because it serves as a bridge from the Old to New Testament. From the very first sentence Matthew makes it clear, he is connecting Jesus’ arrival with the Old Testament story line… a story that begins back with Abraham, Moses, the people of Israel, and a line of kings.
Matthew was a Jew himself, a tax collector who became a disciple of Jesus. He writes to a Jewish audience using metaphors and references they would be familiar with. In fact, Matthew quotes the Old Testament more than any other New Testament author.
The Jews had been waiting thousands of years for a Messiah, a King – but Jesus and His kingdom were completely different from what the Jews expected. We learn more about the King (Jesus) and the Kingdom of God in Matthew’s collection of Jesus’ teachings including the Sermon on the Mount (Mt 5-7), Jesus’ interaction with people, and the majority of the parables (Mt 13-25). If you’re curious about the Kingdom of God, highlight the word “kingdom” as you read through Matthew!