Matthew 4

This is part of a Daily Devotional Orwell Bible Church prepares each week. You can get a copy from our Downloads and Literature page.

Jesus’ qualification to be Israel’s Christ and King was demonstrated by his superiority over the devil, Israel’s archenemy (vv. 1-11). Though the devil is cunning and powerful, Jesus resisted his every temptation by appealing to Scripture.

John the Baptist’s ministry of announcing the coming of Israel’s Christ and King came to an end and Jesus’ ministry began (vv. 12-17). Many Jews expected the Messiah to be in and around Jerusalem, so Matthew addressed this by showing that Jesus’ ministry was largely conducted in the region around Galilee (v. 13), fulfilling OT prophecy regarding the Messiah (vv. 14-16; Isa 9:1-2). Jesus called Peter, Andrew, James, and John to follow him and labor with him to save souls (vv. 18-22).

Jesus proclaimed the same message as John the Baptist (vv. 17, 23; 3:2). “The gospel of the kingdom” is that Israel must repent of their sins and believe that Jesus is their promised Christ and King. Jesus proved that he was Israel’s Christ and King by doing the works of the promised Messiah (vv. 23-24; cf. Isa 35:5-6; Ezek 34:16; Mic 4:6-7).

Truths to Nail Down and Meditate On

  1. Respond to temptation as Jesus did: “It is written,” (vv. 4, 7, 10). Satan’s temptations are limited to this life, yet if yielded to will kill the soul.
  2. There is no contest between Satan, the god of this world (2 Cor 4:4), and the King of Israel. The devil only comes to tempt, kill, and destroy (vv. 3, 11); Jesus is always with believers (28:20).
  3. Miracles are supernatural acts of God that infrequently occurred in biblical history. Miracles served as supporting signs of God’s messengers and their message, verifying such were truly from him.
  4. No one can do the “kingdom work” that Jesus did (vv. 23-24), for only he is Israel’s Christ and King. Our “mission” is to teach unbelievers about Jesus, calling them to repentance and faith.