There are four Gospels that tell the story of Jesus’ life and ministry. Matthew’s Gospel has a unique voice, tone, and style. Here are five reasons why you should not ignore the Gospel and start reading it today.
1. Building a foundation for the rest of the New Testament
Firstly, the Gospel of Matthew is a great way to learn about what Christianity is all about. Matthew helps you understand the other books by giving you the context and background information you need.
There are at least four questions that Matthew’s theology tries to answer. So, who are we? Where are we in history and the world? What is the problem we have? What is God’s solution to our problem? (Scot McKnight)
2. Understanding Jesus’ teachings
Secondly, Matthew is known as the gospel that gives the most attention to what Jesus taught. The Beatitudes are part of the Sermon on the Mount. Statements such as,
‘Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth’,
‘Love your enemies for those who persecute you’ and
‘Do not judge, or you too will be judged’.
Matthew gives his readers a deep look at the values and principles that Jesus lived by and taught to his disciples.
3. Insights into Jewish culture and history
Thirdly, Matthew was primarily written for a mostly Jewish audience. In fact, Matthew is usually regarded as the “most Jewish gospel” (cf.John Kampen). The Gospel gives its readers important information about the culture, beliefs, and practises of Jews during Jesus’ time. Reading Matthew’s Gospel will help you to understand His teachings better.
4. The Fulfillment of Prophecy
Fourthly, Matthew mentions the Old Testament more than 130 times. He shows how Old Testament prophecies come true in Jesus Christ as a person.
For Matthew, Jesus is the Messiah, and he goes on to show that Jesus is the fulfilment of most prophecies of the Old Testament that Jesus fulfilled. This helps us to see how the Bible is all connected.
5. A call to discipleship
Fifthly, Matthew stresses the call to discipleship and the importance of following Jesus throughout the book. By reading Matthew, people can learn more about what it means to be a disciple of Jesus and how to live out their faith in their daily lives. For instance, “For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.” Matthew 12:50
Many among us begin our New Year’s reading resolutions by committing to read one chapter every day starting with Matthew’s Gospel. With only 28 chapters, reading only one chapter a day would enable you to finish the Book within a month.
Matthew’s Gospel is a valuable resource for anyone who wants to learn more about God and grow in their faith. Whether you are a seasoned student of the Bible or a new believer, Matthew’s Gospel has a lot to offer and is well worth your time and interest.