Thus far, our study of the teaching of Jesus has focused on his authority, his methods, and the effects of his teaching. With this lesson we will focus on some of the content of his teaching. When we analyze the content of the Lord’s teaching, here are some of the things that we discover.
JESUS ANNOUNCED THE KINGDOM
- Mark 1:14-15 – Jesus came to Galilee “proclaiming the gospel of God,” which consisted of these points:
- “The time is fulfilled”
- “The kingdom of God is at hand” (cf. Matt. 4:17; 10:7)
- “Repent and believe in the gospel”
- Matthew 5-7 – the kingdom is mentioned 7x in the Sermon on the Mount
- Matthew 13 – many of the parables began with, “The kingdom of heaven is like…” (24, 31, 33, 44, 45, 47).
JESUS WAS CANDID ABOUT SIN
- To hear some folks today talk about Jesus, one would get the impression that he was a “live and let live” kind of person. That he was not one to “rock the boat” or be judgmental about the way people chose to live.
- However, consider these examples of Jesus rocking the boat: Matthew 5:29-30; 18:6; 11:24; John 8:11; 39-44
JESUS CHALLENGED PEOPLE TO CHANGE
- Matthew 19:3-12 – Stop putting asunder what God has joined together.
- Mark 10:17-22 – You lack “one thing.” Fix it.
- John 6:60-69 – He didn’t soften a challenge in the face of rejection.
- Matthew 16:21-23 – He didn’t mold himself to others’ expectations.
- Matthew 18:1-6 – He didn’t diminish expectations for his friends.
JESUS INVITED EVERYONE
- Matthew 11:28-30 – the invitation is to “all who are weary and heavy-laden.”
- John 6:37 – “Whoever comes to me I will never cast out.”
- John 7:37 – “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink.”
- Matthew 23:37; John 5:40 – Jesus would have saved even his enemies, but they rejected his offer.
JESUS EXCLUDED MANY
- The picture of Jesus painted by many today is a picture of a pluralistic, tolerant, inclusive teacher. If by “inclusive” one means that His offer of salvation was/is for anyone and everyone, then that is true (Rev. 22:17; Heb. 2:9; John 3:16).
- But that’s not what most people mean. They mean that Jesus didn’t care how you lived your life. He just accepted everyone’s behavior and approved of all belief systems.
- But note how exclusive Jesus was:
- John 14:6 – He claimed to be the ONLY way to God (cf. Acts 4:12)
- Matthew 11:27 – He claimed exclusive knowledge of who the Father really is
- John 5:39-40 – He claimed to be the source of eternal life
This lesson does not exhaust the content of the Lord’s teaching. But hopefully it gives us a taste of the spiritual meals that he served the people who were blessed to eat at his table.