Bible Stories for Adults
Jesus Calls Matthew
Welcome and Announcements
Next Week - Jesus Heals on the Sabbath (Matthew 12:1-14)
Bible Words to Remember:
IJesus said, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick.... For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners. Matthew 9:12, 13b
WHERE Jesus Begins to Minister = Locate and trace on map
Where did Jesus grow up?
Matthew 2:23 = Nazareth, a town in Galilee
Where did Jesus go to begin His ministry?
Mark 1:9 = From Nazareth to Judea to be anointed in baptism by John in Jordan
How old was Jesus at this time?
Luke 3:23a = About 30 years old - Age when Levites began serving as priests (Num 4:47)
Where did He go after being baptized? = Judean desert is between Jerusalem and Dead Sea
Matthew 4:1 = Into the Judean desert to be tempted for 40 days
Where is Jesus the next time we see Him?
John 1:28-29, 35-36 = Back where John was baptizing - at the Bethany by the Jordan
Does He stay around John for a good while?
John 2:1-2 = No, the next day He went to Cana, a town in Galilee by Nazareth
Did He then go back home to Nazareth?
John 2:12 = No, He went to Capernaum, a town on northern shore of Sea of Galilee
Why did He only stay there a few days?
John 2:13 = It was time to go to Jerusalem for the Passover
Did Jesus go home to Nazareth after the Passover was over?
John 3:22 = No, He began ministering in Judea
What caused Him to leave and where did He go? = Left to avoid conflicts from perceived competition
John 4:1-5 = Returned to Galilee - through Samaria; Met woman at the well
Where did He next spend time ministering? = Samaritans believed before Jews in Galilee heard
John 4:40-41 = Stayed two days at Sychar in Samaria
Where did He go after Sychar?
John 4:43, 46 = Returned to Cana; Healed official's son in Capernaum remotely
Did He stay in Cana to minister there?
Luke 4:14-15 = No, He traveled throughout Galilee
What is one of the places where He went to minister in Galilee?
Luke 4:16, 29 = His home town of Nazareth - He was rejected there
Where did He go then?
Matthew 4:13 = To live in Capernaum
Did Jesus settle in Capernaum and take a break from His continual travels?
Luke 4:42-43 = No, He continued to travel throughout Galilee (& Judea)
Since Capernaum served as the home base for His ministry, did Jesus consider it home?
Matthew 8:20 = No, He had no place to lay His head
Jesus Gathers Disciples (John 1:35-45)
Where and when do we first see people following Jesus? = Andrew, Simon, John (& James)
John 1:35-42 = Two of John's disciples follow Him and bring their brother(s)
How soon do we see more disciples being added?
John 1:43-45 = The next day Jesus called Philip and he brought Nathaniel
Did these disciples follow Jesus on His travels, or did He meet different disciples in different places?
John 2:1-2, 12; 3:22 = They followed Him around
Did these men become full-time disciples from the beginning?
Mark 1:16-20 = No, they went back to work; Jesus called them to be fishers of men
Another Called Disciple (Luke 5:27)
What other disciple do we see specifically called by Jesus?
Luke 5:27 = Levi, a tax collector - Levi means "joined" - he was joined to sin in business
How was this tax collector even further called by Jesus?
Mark 3:13-18a = He was chosen from among all Jesus' disciples to be a select apostle
What do we learn from Mark about this Levi?
Mark 2:14a = Son of Alphaeus
What interesting point do we find as we continue through the list of the twelve select apostles?
Mark 3:18b-19 = James the Less was also a son of Alphaeus (brothers?)
What other interesting point do we get from Matthew's account?
Matthew 9:9 = He was also called Matthew
Matthew - Gift of God = Could be a second name, a Greek name or a name given by Jesus
Matthew calls himself Matthew, Mark and Luke call him Levi
What else does Matthew point out that the other gospel writers leave out in their lists of apostles?
Matthew 10:3 = His occupation as a tax collector - Didn't want to forget his unworthiness
Two types of tax collectors - Gabbai and Mokhes
Gabbai - Collected regular taxes:
Ground Tax - 1/10th of all grain, 1/5th of all wine & fruit
Mokhes - Collected miscellaneous taxes on anything they could dream up
Income Tax - 1 % of income
Poll Tax - Set fee on all persons, slave & free (men 14-65, women 12-65)
Imports, Exports, Sales, Bridge money, Road money, Harbor dues, Town dues, etc.
Mokhes territories were auctioned to the highest bidder
Expanded to include things like axles, wheels, pack-animals, pedestrians, roads,
river crossings, bridges, market admission, licenses, etc.
Travelers were stopped & unload, everything was searched to determine tax
21/2 - 5 % on goods, up to 121/2 % on luxury items
Romans required a certain amount, Mokhes was able to charge and tax whatever he wanted
Great Mokhes coordinated a network of little Mokhes'
Mokhes could become very wealthy, especially in high traffic areas
Little Mokhes did the dirty work, personally sat at collector booth, directly approached people
Little Mokhes was the worst of the worst
Which type of tax collector was Matthew?
Matthew 9:9 = He was a little Mokhes
Publicanus - Latin for a man who did public duty, most often referenced Little Mokhes
telones - Greek for "a farmer of the tax"
How did the "righteous" Jews feel about tax collectors?
Luke 18:11 = They hated and despised them, ranked with robbers, sinners, adulterers...
Why were tax collectors so hated by the Jews? Because they took their money like IRS agents?
Matthew 22:15-17 = Supported foreign power which occupied the land of Israel
Leviticus 25:36-37 = Became rich at the expense of his countrymen
Acts 11:2-3 = They were in constant contact with Gentiles, always unclean
Tax collectors were virtually impossible to save
Tax collectors were banned from the temple as unclean
Okay to lie about your property to a tax collector
Forbidden to accept alms for the poor or use money for exchange from tax collectors (tainted)
A Pharisee who became a tax collector was expelled until he quits and repents
Tax collectors could never become judges and were inadmissible as witnesses
Did Jesus agree that tax collectors were great sinners?
Matthew 18:17 = Yes
Did Jesus agree that tax collectors could never be saved?
Matthew 21:31-32 = No, those who see no need to repent will not be saved
Did any tax collectors respond to John's call for repentance?
Luke 3:12-13 = Yes, John told them to do their jobs honestly (not to leave their jobs)
What great example do we have of a tax collector responding to Jesus in repentance?
Luke 19:1-2, 5, 8 = Zacchaeus offered to pay back four-fold - beyond penalty of law for theft
Matthew's Job (Mark 2:13-14)
Where did Matthew serve as Little Mokhes?
Mark 2:1, 13-14 = In Capernaum, Jesus' home base
Capernaum was a major hub on the trade route from the east (Persia, orient) to/from Tyre & Israel
Matthew would have had a toll booth on the highway into Gaulanitis (Golan Heights)
Matthew had to be well educated for such a position
High traffic area would have made him very wealthy
Likely the most educated of all of the apostles
Education allowed him to research Scriptures to show Jesus as the prophesied Messiah
Early church historians say his gospel was written in Hebrew to reach intended Jews
Tax collectors in Palestine typically had to speak Aramaic, Greek and Latin
God used Matthew's background in His service - see Joseph, Moses, Paul
Besides calling a despised tax collector, how else do we see Jesus reaching to Matthew in grace?
Mark 2:13-14 = He was teaching a large crowd and called Matthew personally in passing
How did Matthew respond to this call of grace? = Left his great wealth and livelihood
Luke 5:28 = He got up, left everything and followed him
Note: Other disciples could always go back to their occupations at any time - fishing...
Matthew would be immediately replaced - He left everything
Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (Matthew 9:10-11)
How else did Matthew respond to his calling?
Luke 5:29 = He threw a great feast in Jesus' honor
Being outcast from society, who was Matthew able to get to come to this party?
Mark 2:15 = Other outcasts from society
Besides honoring Jesus, what was likely a key purpose of Matthew's feast?
Acts 4:20 = He was excited about introducing others to Jesus - Are we likewise excited?
Did anyone have trouble with this celebration?
Mark 2:16 = The "devout" Pharisees had trouble with a rabbi having fellowship with sinners
Wouldn't the Pharisees become unclean by going into Matthew's house to see this?
Matthew 9:11 = Yes, they saw from outside and complained to Jesus' disciples
The Doctor Is In (Matthew 9:12-13)
How did Jesus respond to the comments of the Pharisees? = Acknowledged need for repentance
Matthew 9:12 = It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick
How does Jesus explain His purpose?
ischyo - Used in Matthew & Mark for healthy - Greek for able, strong, healthy
hygiaino - Used by Dr. Luke - Greek for opposite of diseased, root for hygiene
Luke 5:32 = I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance
How does Matthew show that Jesus is trying to make certain that the Pharisees understand Him?
Matthew 9:13 = Go and learn was common rabbi saying to get student to study text closer
Why did Jesus say "I desire mercy, not sacrifice"?
Hosea 6:4-6 = Pharisees would recognize call to faith over ritual obedience
How did Jesus further explain this later?
Micah 6:6-8 = Pharisees would recognize call to justice and mercy toward repentant
Matthew 25:40 = We are to show God's mercy (hesed - lovingkindness) to others
Copyright © 1998 by Kurt Rosenhagen
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