READING: Matthew 5
Matthew is the first of the five historical books (the Gospels and Acts) that make up 60 percent of the New Testament. These books lay the foundation upon which the epistles are built, and they show how the life of Christ and the acts of the apostles are embedded in a historical context. The Gospel of Matthew stresses the lordship of Christ and His perfect fulfillment of many Old Testament messianic passages. It is a portrait of Jesus that invites us to respond in humility and obedience to His loving authority.
Matthew begins his account of the presentation and rejection of Israel’s Messiah and King by unveiling the credentials of Jesus as the direct descendant of David, the King of the Jews sought by the Magi, the fulfillment of John the Baptist’s preaching, and the sinless One who overcame the satanic temptations in the wilderness (1–4). In His matchless Sermon on the Mount (5–7), Jesus teaches that God looks at the heart and not merely our actions.
Lord, may I let my light shine before others in such a way that they may see my good works, and glorify You, Father, in heaven.
Meditation passage: verses 3–10, 16–18