This is part of a Daily Devotional Orwell Bible Church prepares each week. You can get a copy from our Downloads and Literature page.
Matthew continues to relate numerous miracles Jesus did, supporting his message that he is the Christ, the son of David, the King of Israel who “came to save his people from their sins” (1:21). Jesus’ authority to forgive sins is illustrated by his power of the physical effects of sin (vv. 1–8). These miracles also show the necessity of faith, the genuine and submissive belief that Jesus is the Christ (vv. 2, 18, 21, 27–28).
This chapter details the first occasions of religious opposition to Jesus. The scribes—religious lawyers—accused Jesus of blasphemy for forgiving sins (v. 3). The Pharisees—conservative, but focused on the letter of the law—took issue with Jesus being in close contact with “sinners” (vv. 10–11). The Pharisees contended that Jesus’ miraculous power was the result of demon possession (v. 34), clearly denying that he was the Christ, the King of Israel. Jewish opposition to Jesus would continue and increase from this time on, throughout Israel and the Roman empire as the gospel spread.
Truths to Nail Down and Meditate On
- If your sins are forgiven you can rejoice even though suffering much physically (9:2)!
- Jesus’ remedy for distressed, oppressed people was the ministry of the Word and praying for more to minister the Word (9:36–38). Distress and oppression are the results of sin, and sin can only be dealt with by faith in Jesus, and faith comes by hearing the Word of God (Rom 10:14–17). Spread the gospel, and pray for more to spread it!
- Miracles’ significance are denied and completely missed because of unbelief (9:32–34).