Sermon: The King’s Authority

The King’s Authority
Matthew 9:1-8
November 28, 2021

I have a friend who — right before he gives his opinion on what I should do — likes to say, “If I were king for the day…” I think he means that jokingly. I think.

What would you do if you were king for the day? Poet Judith Viorst, writing in the voice of elementary-aged Alexander gives one opinion, in the poem, “If I were in charge of the world…”

If I were in charge of the world
I’d cancel oatmeal,
Monday mornings,
Allergy shots, and also Sara Steinberg.

If I were in charge of the world
There’d be brighter night lights,
Healthier hamsters, and
Basketball baskets forty-eight inches lower.

If I were in charge of the world
You wouldn’t have lonely.
You wouldn’t have clean.
You wouldn’t have bedtimes.
Or “Don’t punch your sister.”
You wouldn’t even have sisters.

If I were in charge of the world
A chocolate sundae with whipped cream and nuts would be a vegetable
All 007 movies would be G,
And a person who sometimes forgot to brush,
And sometimes forgot to flush,
Would still be allowed to be
In charge of the world.

Fortunately, Alexander, my friend, and you and I are not in charge of the world. We are not good candidates for kinghood and sovereignty. But there is One who is supremely qualified to be King — Jesus.

The book of Matthew presents Jesus Christ as the King of Israel, the promised Messiah to fulfill the covenantal promises to Israel. The question throughout Matthew’s presentation of Jesus’ ministry is “Would Israel have Him as her King?” She would not. The King was rejected, crucified and resurrected, and returned to Heaven until He would come in a second advent and set up His throne in Jerusalem.

But Matthew is not just presenting Jesus as King of Israel. He also demonstrates that He is King of all men — King of the earth and King of the Gentiles, and available to Gentiles as their Savior and King. Only Matthew tells us the story of the appearance of the Magi in the birth account of Christ — Gentiles at the birth of Israel’s King. He also tells of the Gentile centurion’s faith (8:10), the promise of the church (16:18 — the only use of the term “church” in the gospels) which would include Gentiles, the promise of the preaching of the Kingdom to all the nations (24:14), and the Great Commission taking the gospel to the nations (28:18-20). Matthew — the gospel writer to the Jews — is preoccupied with Israel’s, and with the presentation of King Jesus to the nations.

Who is this King? That’s what we are considering in these weeks heading into the Advent season; this morning we will see the authority of the King in Matthew 9. Just how authoritative is this King Jesus? He is authoritative over every realm, but His great authority is for our greatest problem —

King Jesus’ authority is extensive enough to atone for every sin.

King Jesus reveals four aspects of His authority:

1. The King’s Authority is for Deeds of Sin (vv. 1-2)
2. The King’s Authority is for Hearts of Sin (vv. 3-6a)

  • The accusation against the King’s authority (v. 3)
    The King’s evaluation of the accusation (vv. 4-5)
    The King’s demonstration of His authority (v. 6a)

3. The King’s Authority is for Compassion (vv. 6b-7)
4. The King’s Authority is for Worship (v. 8)

Download the rest of this sermon on Matthew 9:1-8.

The audio will be posted on the GBC website by tomorrow.

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