Matthew 12:38-42; The Sign Print

Welcome to our church's home page.  If it is your first time visiting or you frequently visit our site, we appreciate you sharing your time with us.  If you are looking for more information about the church, we invite you to visit the various articles within this site.  We hope they will answer your questions about Stone Gate Bible Fellowship. Our Sunday Worship service starts at 10:30 am and finishes before 12:00 pm. We are located at 904 Rancheros Drive, San Marcos, CA, Suite M. What you will find below is an overview of the Scriptural portion of the message given on February 22, 2015

 

The Sign, It Has Been Given.

 

There is a concern that in the interest of "political correctness" there will be more and more pressure on the church to remove anything that would be considered divisive. The fact that Jesus Himself said that He would divide (Matt. 10:20-22) families and that He would be the reason for being hated would put the focus on Christ Himself. It is here that we must be vigilant to make sure that we do not succumb to those who would advocate removing Jesus or the gospel from the church or our message. We must be vigilant to keep Christ and the gospel front and center of our faith and message. On of the reasons that we must keep Jesus front and center is found in Matthew 12:38-42.

  

38 Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to Him, "Teacher, we want to see a sign from You."  39 But He answered and said to them, "An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign; and yet no sign will be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet;  40 for just as JONAH WAS THREE DAYS AND THREE NIGHTS IN THE BELLY OF THE SEA MONSTER, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. 

 

The scribes and Pharisees wanted a sign. They wanted Jesus to prove Himself. If we were to think about it, what they were saying is that they expected Jesus to prove Himself to them. Their self arrogance is self evident. Jesus answers them. They will be given only one sign of which Jonah was a type or an example. Again, we need to look at Jesus' response within the culture. It would be understood by those who were listening that the term "days and night" was synonymous with "day." It was customary that if a person spent any portion of time in that "day" it counted as one day. Jesus was telling them that His death and resurrection 3 days later would be the validating sign that He is the Messiah.

 

Jesus then cites two example of where others were given less than what the Pharisees were given and they "believed." Thus the Pharisees had no excuse for the hardness of heart against Jesus.   

 

Those in Nineveh repented with less.

41 "The men of Nineveh will stand up with this generation at the judgment, and will condemn it because they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and behold, something greater than Jonah is here. 

 

According to Hendriksen the difference between what the Pharisees had to work with and what the Ninevites had to work with is summarized below:

 

Pharisees                         Ninevites  

Son of God                       minor prophet

mult. miracles                   just authenticating messenger

Christ sinless                    Jonah was sinful, rebellious, foolish

grace                                doom

God's people                    Gentiles

 

As you can see, the Pharisees and scribes had much more to help them see the truth which also made it that much worse for them when they denied Christ.

 

The Queen of the South sought out Wisdom based on less.

42 "The Queen of the South will rise up with this generation at the judgment and will condemn it, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and behold, something greater than Solomon is here. 

 

Again, according to Hendriksen, the difference between the Pharisees and the Queen of the Sought is captured below.

 

Pharisees                            Queen of the South

close proximity                    from far away - (from area known as Yemen today.)

Christ                                  Solomon

gave nothing                       expensive gifts

religious advantages          she just heard reports

invited/urged to Christ        no report of invitation.


"The queen of the South is the queen of Sheba, a kingdom of Semitic Peoples in southwest Arabia. Her visit to Solomon is reported in 1Ki. 10:1-13; 2 Ch. 9:1-12. 'Ends of the earth' is a hyperbolic and reflects OT idiom." Nolland NIGTC

 

Here again, Jesus tells of a person who had much less available to them and yet recognized the truth when it was communicated to them. 

 

We have the sign. Jesus is the Messiah. He is the Son of God. He is the Cornerstone of our faith and we must always keep Him the center of our faith. May God grant us the strength and courage to not compromise. 

 

"Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE (R), Copyright (c) 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by the Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. www.Lockman.org"

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 March 2015 07:48