Faithlife Sermons

Authority and Obedience

matthew  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 1 view
Notes
Transcript
Handout
Sermon Tone Analysis
A
D
F
J
S
Emotion
A
C
T
Language
O
C
E
A
E
Social
View more →
Org. Sentence: (1) A Metaphor about Faith (2) a conversation about the object of our faith (3) a parable about faith
(A) 18-22 FIG TREE,

It might look okay from a distance because the leaves had emerged, but if it had no nodules it was diseased or maybe even dying inside. Growth without fruit was a sign of decay. Jesus is simply pronouncing that such is the case here.

what is the object of our faith?
The New American Commentary: Matthew 1. True Discipleship versus Harsher Condemnation for the Jewish Leaders (19:1–22:46)

Unless Israel repents, like the fig tree it will perish.

There are many things we do that can appear to be signs of real belief but can grow without real heart change. Evidently we can be very busy in church activities without real heart change and without real compassionate involvement with others.

patience
kindness
compassion
generosity
faith
forgiveness
purity
(B) 23-27 AUTHORITY OF JESUS CHALLENGED
lesson against “hollow religiosity” KELLER
chief priests in temple asked Jesus, by what authority do you do these things?
Jesus caught them in a trap concerning John’s ministry
so… “we do not know?”
This is what disbelief leads towards… it’s the illusion of enlightenment that is really the epitome of “unknowing”…
(C) 28-32 PARABLE TWO SONS
those that you consider to be the worst, the prostitutes and the tax collectors, they disobeyed at first but ultimately came around...
YOU say you obey and appear as being good, but go on sinning and ultimately live by your pride!
One thing is always clear with Jesus: He demands a response… We don’t have the option to simply look at him with the response of, “what a good teacher… what an intriguing person...”
Jesus claimed to be God — and he is either a liar, mad, or telling the truth.
As one writer said: “We must crown him or kill him.”
By placing our life in the life of Christ, we can begin the transforming process of becoming more like Him!
By placing ourselves in Christ, our character will change, our desires will change — and it will be good.
Announcements:
This week is kind of part 2 to last week… so if you missed it, I encourage you to go back and listen to last week’s sermon… But essentially what happened last week is:
Jesus made his way into Jerusalem… to the temple… and was disturbed by the exploitation of the poor and the foreigners by the religious leaders.
and so he drove people out!
And told them that the temple was to be a place fo prayers — FOR ALL NATIONS, FOR ALL PEOPLE!
We said that the main idea of the text was: A description of what it look like to appropriately worship God.
Jesus leaves the temple, stays with his friends… and then returns the next day… and that’s where we find ourselves today.
Last week was about worship, the epicenter of our affections, desires, dreams!
This week: Description & Teaching — about faith and what faith should produce!
The main point of the text today: Our life changes when we put our faith in Jesus.
OUR LIFE CHANGES WHEN WE PUT OUR FAITH IN JESUS.
Primary Claim: Our life changes when we put our faith in Jesus.
Org. Sentence: (1) A Metaphor about Faith (2) a conversation about the object of our faith (3) a parable about faith.
Org. Sentence: (1) A Metaphor about Faith (2) a conversation about the object of our faith (3) a parable about faith
Jesus curses the fig tree. (vs. 18-22)
A metaphor about faith
I don’t think this in a metaphor in the sense that it didn’t happen — BUT Matthew tells us this detail to teach us something.
Matthew 21:18–21 ESV
In the morning, as he was returning to the city, he became hungry. And seeing a fig tree by the wayside, he went to it and found nothing on it but only leaves. And he said to it, “May no fruit ever come from you again!” And the fig tree withered at once. When the disciples saw it, they marveled, saying, “How did the fig tree wither at once?” And Jesus answered them, “Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen.
matthew 21:
The fig tree became a metaphor for Israel’s faith...
Jesus is hungry… there are leaves on the tree, which is a sign that it might bear some sustenance.
But it is barren!
There is no life in it! There is no fruit in it!
Tim Keller writes,

It might look okay from a distance because the leaves had emerged, but if it had no nodules it was diseased or maybe even dying inside. Growth without fruit was a sign of decay. Jesus is simply pronouncing that such is the case here.

Notice what Jesus says in verse 21:
Matthew 21:21 ESV
And Jesus answered them, “Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen.
if you have faith and do not doubt...
This whole thing is about FAITH!
Wayne Grudem defines faith as:

faith: Trust or dependence on God based on the fact that we take him at his word and believe what he has said.

See, worship and faith are so intertwined. Because, ultimately, we are putting our faith in the things that we worship!
[FOR EXAMPLE]
When you trust and put your dependance upon your job to bring you comfort, security, purpose — you will start to behave in a way, towards your job, that resembles worship.
So I will sacrifice family, friendships, ministry, focus —> for my job if it’s what I am ultimately putting my trust and dependance upon!
Or maybe it’s a romantic relationship:
When I put my trust and dependence in a romantic relationship —> I will inevitably start to treat that person in a way that resembles worship
I will sacrifice my morals, my time with others… my happiness will become dependent on that other person and how the relationship is going…
Because, ultimately, we put our faith in the things that we worship!
So last week we talked about appropriate worship and this week we’re focusing on faith.
Begin to ask yourself?
what is the object of our faith?
what is the object of my faith?
What am I putting my faith in?
Who am I putting my faith?
Where does my ultimate trust and dependence lie?
And within this passage there is a warning!
Craig Blomberg writes:
The New American Commentary: Matthew 1. True Discipleship versus Harsher Condemnation for the Jewish Leaders (19:1–22:46)

Unless Israel repents, like the fig tree it will perish.

Jesus is very clear — “my followers put their faith in me!”
Keller writes:

There are many things we do that can appear to be signs of real belief but can grow without real heart change. Evidently we can be very busy in church activities without real heart change and without real compassionate involvement with others.

Jesus wants more than our busyness, he wants our character to change! Jesus wants our trust… our dependence. FAITH!
Jesus wants more than our busyness, he wants our character to change!
And this kind of faith leads to transformation!
Jesus wants more than our busyness, he wants our character to change!
That’s what we’re saying today!
The main point of the text today: Our life changes when we put our faith in Jesus.
patience: are we becoming more like resembling Christ?!
patience
kindness
kindness
compassion
compassion
generosity
generosity
faith
faith
forgiveness
forgiveness
purity
purity
I say it a lot, but we must continually remember that, as humans, we’re always becoming something. We’re always changing. And we’re either becoming more like Jesus or more like His opposite!
We’re either headed towards grace or headed towards death!
ALWAYS… we’re interestingly never stagnant… never unmoving… think about it: most decisions we make are moral and ethical in nature.
And how we live, and in the decisions we make — the way we do these things tells us what we worship...
If you call yourself a Christian, and you’re not sure… ask a mature Christian that you trust to be honest… ask them how they think you’re doing!
Am I growing more like Christ or not?
Is there evidence of God’s grace in my life?
A conversation about the object of our faith. (vs. 23-27)
Matthew 21:23–27 ESV
And when he entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came up to him as he was teaching, and said, “By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?” Jesus answered them, “I also will ask you one question, and if you tell me the answer, then I also will tell you by what authority I do these things. The baptism of John, from where did it come? From heaven or from man?” And they discussed it among themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say to us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ‘From man,’ we are afraid of the crowd, for they all hold that John was a prophet.” So they answered Jesus, “We do not know.” And he said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.
Jesus was in the temple yesterday, now he returns…
Once again, he’s interfacing with the religious leaders.
And they’re furious with him, as we saw last week.
lesson against “hollow religiosity” KELLER
lesson against “hollow religiosity” KELLER
And Jesus begins to teach them a lesson against what KELLER refers to as “hollow religiosity”...
We’ve mentioned this many times over… “hollow religiosity” is when we talk and act as if we’re faithful and sincere, but it’s hollow… we lack the real substance.
We’re playing a game
We’re pretending
Maybe we believe our own charade?
After all, we lie to ourselves more than anyone else does.
Chief priests in temple asked Jesus, “by what authority do you do these things?
chief priests in temple asked Jesus, by what authority do you do these things?
Jesus catches them in a trap concerning John the Baptist’s ministry...
Jesus caught them in a trap concerning John’s ministry
Matthew 21:25 ESV
The baptism of John, from where did it come? From heaven or from man?” And they discussed it among themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say to us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’
uh oh?
so… “we do not know?”
Matthew 21:26–27 ESV
But if we say, ‘From man,’ we are afraid of the crowd, for they all hold that John was a prophet.” So they answered Jesus, “We do not know.” And he said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.
matthew
so… “we do not know?
Interestingly, this is what disbelief always leads towards… This is always what happens when we put our faith in things besides God!
This is what disbelief leads towards… it’s the illusion of enlightenment that is really the epitome of “unknowing”…
Nowadays, it has become popular to advocate for disbelief in God as a sort of right of passage towards enlightenment and more “open-mindedness”…
It is often believed that disbelief, particularly in God, is somehow clearer thinking!
But in reality… it’s an illusion of enlightenment that is really the epitome of “unknowing”…
Disbelief in Jesus doesn’t lead to clarity but confusion.
When we have no firm foundation to build upon, and we build upon our own desires and wants, it will leads us to chaos!
That’s why Jesus says in verse 21: “if you have faith and do not doubt...
Faith is incredibly important! And we’re all putting our faith in something. It doesn’t matter if you’re in here and you consider yourself irreligious…a non-Christian. We all have faith, it’s just faith in different things. All of us are trusting and are dependent on something or someone!
what is the object of our faith?
Is our faith in Jesus?
The main point of the text today: Our life changes when we put our faith in Jesus.
A parable about faith. (vs. 28-32)
Matthew 21:28–32 ESV
“What do you think? A man had two sons. And he went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’ And he answered, ‘I will not,’ but afterward he changed his mind and went. And he went to the other son and said the same. And he answered, ‘I go, sir,’ but did not go. Which of the two did the will of his father?” They said, “The first.” Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes go into the kingdom of God before you. For John came to you in the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes believed him. And even when you saw it, you did not afterward change your minds and believe him.
Jesus gives such a wonderful and articulate argument
Jesus gives such a wonderful and articulate argument here!
those that you consider to be the worst, the prostitutes and the tax collectors, they disobeyed at first but ultimately came around...
Essentially, Jesus is saying to the religious leaders: “those that you consider to be the worst, the prostitutes and the tax collectors, they disobeyed at first but ultimately came around… and they will enter the kingdom of God before YOU!!!
those that you consider to be the worst, the prostitutes and the tax collectors, they disobeyed at first but ultimately came around...
YOU say you obey and appear as being good, but go on sinning and ultimately live by your pride!
YOU say you obey and appear as being good, but go on sinning and ultimately live by your pride!
YOU say you obey and appear as being good, but go on sinning and ultimately live by your pride!
One thing is always clear with Jesus:
One thing is always clear with Jesus: He demands a response… We don’t have the option to simply look at him with the response of, “what a good teacher… what an intriguing person...”
One thing is always clear with Jesus: He demands a response… We don’t have the option to simply look at him with the response of, “what a good teacher… what an intriguing person...”
He demands a response… We don’t have the option to simply look at him with the response of, “what a good teacher… what an intriguing person...
Jesus claimed to be God — and he is either a liar, mad, or telling the truth.
Jesus claimed to be God — and he is either a liar, mad, or telling the truth.
Jesus claimed to be God — and he is either a liar, mad, or telling the truth.
As one writer said: “We must crown him or kill him.
As one writer said: “We must crown him or kill him.”
As one writer said: “We must crown him or kill him.”
Craig Blomberg summarizes this section by writing:
The New American Commentary: Matthew 1. True Discipleship versus Harsher Condemnation for the Jewish Leaders (19:1–22:46)

“Like the father sending his sons to work, God commands all people to carry out his will. Like the son who ultimately disobeyed, some promise but do not perform rightly and so are rejected by God. Like the son who ultimately obeyed, some rebel but later submit and so are accepted.”74 Even more concise is this summary: in the kingdom performance takes priority over promise. This remains true in Christian circles today as much as in first-century Israel.

Ultimately, what matters is that we submit to God by putting our faith in Jesus!
By placing our life in the life of Christ, we can begin the transforming process of becoming more like Him!
By placing our life in the life of Christ, we can begin the transforming process of becoming more like Him!
By placing our life in the life of Christ, we can begin the transforming process of becoming more like Him!
HOW:
(1) Pray, ask God to be your savior. (2) Believe in Christ! (3) Confess our rebellions/sin and turning to Jesus — by doing this, you admit your need for God — which is what the religious leaders would not do.
By placing ourselves in Christ, our character will change, our desires will change — and it will be good.
By placing ourselves in Christ, our character will change, our desires will change — and it will be good.
By placing ourselves in Christ, our character will change, our desires will change — and it will be good.
The main point of the text today: Our life changes when we put our faith in Jesus.
The main point of the text today: Our life changes when we put our faith in Jesus.
What are you placing your trust in?
Where is your dependance?
Whom is the object of your faith?
Are you growing to be more like Jesus? OUR LIFE CHANGES WHEN WE PUT OUR FAITH IN JESUS.
And it changes for the better!
Let’s pray.
Community Group Reflection:
Read . What is Jesus trying to us about faith?
Read . Why is it important to continually recognize God’s authority? What are some implications of acknowledging God’s authority?
Read . Reflect on the importance/significance of obedience. Genuine faith results in joy-filled obedience. Thoughts?
Communion:
L: In the night in which he was betrayed, Our lord Jesus took bread,He gave thanks; broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying: Take and eat; this is my body, given for you.Do this for the remembrance of me.
L: Again, after supper,He took the cup, gave thanks, and gave it for all to drink, saying; this cup is The new covenant in my blood, shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin.Do this for the remembrance of me.
Silent Reflection – to prepare our hearts toCome to the Lords table
L: Jesus' death brings us life and this meal reminds us that we are fed by Jesus and forgiven because of Jesus.
C: We rejoice that You have died, have risen, and are now with the Father advocating for us. Amen.
L: With our money, time, and talent we give generously, knowing that through Your Son, Jesus, You have generously given to us.
C: We rejoice that You have given everything and we joyfully give everything back to Your care. Amen.
L: If you believe Jesus died to forgive you your sins you are welcome to come,
L: Come for all is ready
Benediction:
Go in confidence as God’s dearly loved children and live by the Spirit in all you do, resting secure in your hope and Savior Jesus Christ. Peace be with you.
Related Media
Related Sermons