POC Blog

The random technotheolosophical blogging of Reid S. Monaghan

An Introduction to the Gospel of Matthew and the Sermon on the Mount


Words. Words are some of the most powerful things in the universe. Human beings use them every day to do both good and evil. Many of us: educators, ministers, business leaders, politicians and certainly parents even make speeches with them. Even as a person who gives many sermons and instruction in words, I am no fool to think that any one speech I give changes the course of history. Yet there are such times when even a very brief compilation of words profoundly impacts the destiny of the world.

In our own culture one can think of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg address or Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech or Ronald Reagan’s “Mr. Gorbachev tear down this wall” in front of Brandenburg Gate towards the end of the Cold War. My mind also goes to King George VI of England in 1939 and the speech he gave to rally a nation in the defense of their island and civilization against the Nazi aggressor. Many of us are aware of this speech due to the 2010 Academy award-winning film “The Kings Speech.” This powerful film brought that impactful speech, from a stuttering and unassuming King, to the masses of a new generation.

Yet there is another, still greater king, who gave a still greater speech long ago. A humble Jewish teacher took his place on a hillside and took his followers and many a listening ear to school. This speech, the words of the King of Kings, was written down and transferred to millions in the inspired Word of God in the Scriptures. This speech has changed the world perhaps more than any words in all of history. And by that I do not mean to exaggerate. The teaching of Jesus Christ unleashed a revolution in the world and showed us a different path to walk amidst the greedy, violent and self-exalting human race.

This year at Jacobs Well we will study the King’s speech and go to school with Jesus. As God permits, from September until Easter we will walk in the words of the Sermon of the Mount found in the Gospel of Matthew. We will by no means be able to exhaust its riches together, but I do pray that its gold would shine forth for all who are hungry and thirsty for a renewed life and mission together.

In this introduction I have but a few simple goals. I want to introduce all of us to the Gospel of Matthew, albeit at a very cursory level. Matthew’s gospel is the soil in which the Sermon on the Mount finds its biblical roots. We will then look at the nature of the sermon within the itinerant ministry of Jesus of Nazareth. We will also look at various hermeneutic positions related to the Sermon on the Mount. My hope is that we will see this teaching as life shaping for the church that reflects the eternal realities of the Kingdom. Finally, we will make note of why this teaching is essential for a gospel community living out the mission of Jesus in our own age and culture. So let us begin our journey by taking a quick peak at the Gospel of Matthew.

The Gospel of Matthew

The Sermon on the Mount is comprised of some of the most central and core teachings that Jesus imparted to his followers. In our study together we will look at the record of this teaching in the Gospel of Matthew. The Gospel of Matthew is a rich amalgam of the story of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection and a recounting of his teachings. We do not want to labor too many details on the history and background academic studies in the gospels for our purposes today1 but we do want to highlight a few things about Matthew in particular.

Authorship of the Gospel of Matthew

The gospel of Matthew was well known in the ancient church and was very much in use by the early churches. In discussing the authorship of something like one of the gospels, we are not merely talking about “who wrote the book.” Rather, we are looking at the person who carefully catalogued and communicated important information about his teacher’s life and words. Furthermore, as noted by New Testament scholars Andreas Kostenberger, L. Scott Kellum and Charles Quarles, the author of the gospel of Matthew should be seen as fulfilling the role of a scribe and theologian who carefully arranged and wrote down his account of Jesus’ life and teaching for his particular audience and their needs.2 He is not writing a book as one would write a novel, but writing down the inspired story in order to teach, instruct and convey the good news of Jesus. As to the book itself, it is technically anonymous3 in a formal sense. It is anonymous in that it makes no direct claim to its authorship in its own words. However, the church’s leaders from the earliest days held this gospel to be the work of Matthew the apostle.4 The title as the gospel as kata Matthaion, or according to Matthew, was well in place by the first half of the second century.5 While some find reason to reject this attribution, others, myself included, find no good reason to do so.6 Matthew is mentioned five times in the New Testament and was called out of his life as a despised tax-collector into life as a follower and disciple7 of Jesus. Most would agree that the heavy use of the Old Testament quotations and allusions demonstrate that the gospel was aimed at early Jewish Christians likely in transition into a new way of covenant life as followers of Jesus the Messiah.8 There is an ancient tradition dating back to a church father named Papias that held that Matthew originally composed his work in Hebrew and what survives today is a Greek translation. This view is vigorously disputed9 but the connection to the Hebrew mind and Old Testament becomes clear when reading this work. Though it cannot be demonstrated with absolute certainly that Matthew was the author, there is no compelling evidence to reject this early tradition that was universally acknowledged by the churches.

Dating Matthew

If Matthew is indeed the work of one of the disciples, dating his work would have to fall within his lifespan and place the composition in the second half of the first century. Many scholars today hold that Mark was the first gospel and that Matthew used Mark as well as other oral traditions as source materials for his account.10 Using that system would put Matthew sometime after Mark which many hold to be written in a window anywhere from the late 50s to as late as AD 64. Conservative scholars who hold to Markan Priority typically advise a date just prior to AD 70 due to many facts in the text related to the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem that year.11 Others who have made recent arguments to maintain that Matthew was the “the first gospel,” place its writing even earlier than 70, perhaps as early as the 50s.12 Either way, the Gospel of Matthew is unanimously believed to have taken form within mere decades of the life of Jesus and certainly within the lifespan of its apostolic author.

Hebraisms and Old Testament Quotations and Allusions

As briefly mentioned above, when one reads Matthew’s gospel you quickly find a plethora of Old Testament quotations, allusions and a world that breathes and finds its life in the story of ancient Israel. In fact, David L. Turner categorized some fifty direct Old Testament quotations in Matthew alone.13 The Sermon on the Mount in particular has deep connections with the story of Israel in the Old Testament with two particular parallels of note. First, Jesus is presented as a fulfillment of the Law of Moses and certainly because Jesus gives his teaching on a mountain we quickly draw parallels with Moses on Mt. Sinai.14 The connections are clearly present as we will see later in this essay but we only take them as far as Matthew does. As the late pastor and theologian Dr. John Stott recounted:

“…Matthew does not explicitly liken Jesus to Moses, and we cannot legitimately claim more than that in the sermon ‘the substance of the New Law, the New Sinai, the New Moses are present.’”15

In addition to its connection to Moses and the Pentateuch16, the Gospel of Matthew sets Jesus in proper view in light of the Davidic covenant of 2 Samuel 7. This promise of a coming and eternal king, descended from David is fully on display in Matthew. This is reflected with Matthews’s laser like focus on the nature of the Kingdom of Heaven and its citizens.17 Much more will be noted about the Old Testament backdrop for the identity and teaching of Jesus in a moment when we discuss the structure of the Matthew and his introduction of Jesus. For now let it suffice to say that the Gospel of Matthew is a very Jewish book, laying out the fulfillment of the Old Testament law and a commencement of the Kingdom of God by its Divine Messiah and King.

Many King’s Speeches?

The sermon in Matthew is also similar, but slightly different than some of Jesus’ teaching recorded in Luke chapter 6. In Luke, Jesus is coming down from the hill and takes his teaching position on a level place making this rendition sometimes known as “the Sermon on the Plain.”18 The similarity and difference between these two “King’s Speeches” has led many to wonder if they were the same message given on different occasions, or compilations of Jesus’ teaching conveyed by each gospel writer to address his unique audience and theological purposes. The French-Swiss pastor and theologian John Calvin seemed to view the Sermon on the Mount as a summary or compilation of Jesus’ various teachings given as an itinerant preacher.19 John Stott observes that the sermon in Matthew’s gospel would have lasted about 10 minutes given aloud. So it is appropriate to assume that both Matthew and Luke provide what Stott called “their own condensed summaries.”20 What we need to see is that in Matthew and Luke we have the very teachings of Jesus, inspired by the Holy Spirit, faithfully recorded to instruct us in the good news.21 With that said, it does seem with the geographical and temporal introduction to the Sermon on the Mount that Matthew is recounting an actual occasion where Jesus taught his people even if what he recounts is not a word for word transcription of everything he said that day. It is certain that in the inspired text of Matthew, God gives us everything we needed to hear and know from this central teaching of Jesus.

Now, Not Yet and Other Hermeneutical Considerations

Matthew’s Sermon on the Mount contains such challenging content that there have been many theories of who and what purpose the sermon serves. Is it for the church on the earth? Does it describe the perfection of the Kingdom of Heaven? Is it such a high teaching that it is to humble us and lead us to seek forgiveness? Should this teaching be for now or the age to come? Many ideas have been put forth in church history on these matters. Acts 29 Pastor and Theologian Sam Storms offers a brief but excellent summary of these various views held by Christians throughout history.22 I will briefly summarize his work here and then tell you what perspective we will take in our teaching of the King’s Speech.

  • Theological Liberalism – the sermon is the ethical blue print for bringing about a sort of utopian society. If we as individuals and nations “just do it” we’ll be able to make heaven a place on earth.
  • Roman Catholic View – the sermon is a blueprint for individual salvation. If we do it we will merit God’s grace and justification.
  • Lutheranism – the sermon sets such a high bar that its demands seem impossible to live. It then drives us to the gospel. It functions as a sort of New Testament law.
  • Interim Ethic – the sermon was given to the disciples as a way to live in light of the soon coming apocalypse. Yet Jesus was mistaken about the end of all things so this ethic is no longer needed. The sermon presents an extreme ethic for an extreme situation that no longer applies. Storms credits this proposal to the late Albert Schweitzer.23
  • Dispensationalism – Storms can give you lots of threads to pull but to summarize I will quote him directly after he looks at various moves in this theological camp:

All of these views are based on the dispensationalist theory of the postponed kingdom: i.e., Jesus offered to Israel the consummate fulfillment of all OT theocratic promises, which she rejected. The coming of the kingdom of God, therefore, has been postponed until after the second coming of Christ. Its fullness will be seen only in the millennial age (Christ’s earthly 1,000 year reign). However, be it noted that the Sermon presupposes a world in which insults, persecution, anger, personal litigation, adultery, lying, vengeful attitudes, malice, worry (by God’s children, no less), judgmental spirit, and false prophets, among other things, flourish! As Carl Henry has said, “An era requiring special principles to govern face-slapping and turning the other cheek (5:39) is hardly one to which the term ‘millennium’ is aptly applied.” The good news is that more recently those who call themselves Progressive Dispensational.24

  • Kingdom Living Here and Now – The sermon is teaching to instruct God’s people to live as Kingdom citizens now in Christ while awaiting its full arrival at the end of this age. In this light the sermon issues a high calling to Kingdom living but not an impossible way of life. Storm’s quotes Stott on the sermon on the mount in an appropriate conclusion:

For the standards of the Sermon are neither readily attainable by every man, nor totally unattainable by any man. To put them beyond anybody’s reach is to ignore the purpose of Christ’s Sermon; to put them within everybody’s is to ignore the reality of man’s sin. They are attainable all right, but only by those who have experienced the new birth which Jesus told Nicodemus was the indispensable condition of seeing and entering God’s kingdom.25

In other words, the sermon is for us to follow now and build our lives upon. Yet we do not build in our own strength or in the power of the flesh. It is our new nature, born by the Spirit, empowered by the Spirit that loves and follows Jesus. To quote an old hymn “Did we in our own strength confide, our striving would be losing.”26 Yet when our striving is full of the power of God and we can follow him and build life together on the solid rock of Jesus and his teaching.

As citizens of the earth and as citizens of the Kingdom of heaven we have a glorious experience in this life. We live now as Kingdom people and missionaries among the peoples of the earth. Jesus opens the doors to all who will enter to his Kingdom today and then calls us to live in its light until it comes in fullness and power. This “now, not yet” reality of the Kingdom infuses our every day with eternal significance and draws us forward towards the day when all things will be made new. Dr. D.A. Carson describes this dual reality of the Kingdom in our present age:

Taken together, the books of the New Testament insist that the kingdom of God is already arrived; a person may enter the kingdom and receive life now, life “to the full” (John 10:10). Jesus himself argues that if he drives out demons by the Spirit of God – and he does – then the kingdom of God has come (Matthew 12:28). Nevertheless, the books of the New Testament insist that the kingdom will be inherited only in the future, when Christ comes again. Eternal life, though experienced now, is consummated then, in conjunction with such a renovation of the universe that the only adequate description is “a new heaven and new earth.”27

Until we stand in the new heavens and earth we press forward for the glory of God, the good of others and extend gospel hope in our world. What a privilege friends.

As we come to our approach of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew a note about the literary structure of the gospel will be helpful as it will so beautifully set the context for us to hear the King’s speech.

The Structure of Matthew

Matthew’s gospel flows back and forth from narrative portions and discourses of instruction. A story will be told and then a teaching given that elucidates the narrative further. New Testament scholars W.D. Davies and Dale Allison outline the Matthew’s material by chapter according to this structure labeling the various material (N) for narrative and (D) for discourse/teaching. This short outline will help us in seeing the King’s Speech with the proper narrative background.

1-4 N the main character introduced
5-7 D Jesus’ demands upon Israel
8-9 N Jesus’ deeds within and for Israel
10 D extension of ministry through words and deeds of others
11-12 N negative response
13 D explanation of negative response
14-17 N founding of a new community
18 D instructions to the new community
19-23 N commencement of the passion
24-25 D the future: Judgment and Salvation
26-28 N conclusion: the passion and resurrection28

From this outline we see the chief focus and concern of Matthew right from the start is to introduce Jesus, the main character. He does this through several major scenes with the Sermon on the Mount following. The scenes can be seen as follows and they cast a spotlight on the true identity of Jesus of Nazareth.29

Scene 1—The King’s Roots

Matthew begins with a genealogy so that we see Jesus’ connection to both Abraham and David. He is clearly connected to Abraham who is the fountainhead of the people of Israel to show us that he is fulfilling that calling in the world. Jesus is the true and faithful Israel. He is connected to David so that we might quickly see that Jesus is the true heir of the promises of the Davidic Covenant in 2 Samuel 7. Jesus is the true King that will rule the people of God eternally occupying the Davidic throne. It is Jesus’s Kingdom, the Kingdom of Heaven, which shall be forever established before God the father forever.

Scene 2—The King’s Birth

The second scene involves the royal birth of Jesus in a startling manner. He is conceived by the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Virgin Mary fulfilling the promises of Isaiah 7:14. Even his name, Jesus, was to convey to us that YHWH saves. His father is also a man named Joseph, having the same name of the one whom God used in the Old Testament to protect and deliver his people in Egypt. Another King, Herod, is mentioned on the scene of Matthew’s birth narrative, deeply troubled that his power and rule was threatened. The fulfillment of the prophecy of the birth of Messiah was before them. The wise mean of the East rejoice, while some of the current Jerusalem power structure were threated.

Scene 3—Opposing Kings

God then calls Jesus and his parents to Egypt to flee the murderous intentions of Herod. Again, as a fulfillment of prophecy, Herod slays all the male children in the town of Bethlehem where Jesus was born in order to wipe out a contender for his throne. God protects Jesus in Egypt as he had protected his people through Joseph before in the book of Genesis. And when the danger had cleared, God initiates a new Exodus from Egypt and Matthew cites the prophet Hosea with the simple quotation, “Out of Egypt I called my Son.” (Matthew 2:15)

Scene 4—God’s King

The very next scene takes place in “the wilderness” the place where God had worked in the past to bring his people out of the bondage of slavery and give them his law in the Book of Exodus. Whereas in the first Exodus it was the nation which came out from captivity into the wilderness, here we see the faithful Son of God being announced as the one who brings forth the Kingdom of Heaven. And then something wonderful transacts. Jesus is baptized in the Jordan River by John the Baptizer. In the Old Testament God saved his people through the waters of the red sea bringing judgment upon his Egyptian enemies. Here we see Jesus going through the water as a foreshadowing of his role and mission. He would die and be raised to bring his people through in the second Exodus, the greatest saving act of God. At this time we see the Sprit come upon Jesus and we hear God the Father speak “This is my beloved Son with whom I am well pleased.” This is God’s anointed King! Whereas Israel fails to keep God’s covenant in the Exodus generation, Jesus is fully pleasing to God as our faithful leader and King.

Scene 5—The King’s Temptation

From the scene of his baptism, Jesus is led into the wilderness for forty days and forty nights for a time of testing. Whereas Israel had failed in their faithfulness to YHWH, Jesus will be shown as the faithful Son of God who resists the tempter (Satan) and trusts fully in God’s purposes for him. It is clear that Matthew presents the narrative of Jesus as re-enacting the redemptive history of his people. The parallels are striking. Whereas Moses and his generation failed, the greater law giver and Prophet Jesus will fulfill all of God’s purposes. God’s anointed son (which is what Christ or Messiah means) will be faithful in all things. Daily needs, power, nor presumption will tempt him away from his divine purpose.

Scene 6—The King’s Summons

What we see Jesus do next in Matthew’s narrative is begin to call people onto a new team. As God’s purposes have always been, he begins to form a covenant community, one based upon his summons of people and their following of him as their God and King. Jesus calls disciples from the people of Israel, those with whom he will live his life and entrust his mission. And thus he sits upon the side of a hill and opens his mouth to teach them…and the gathering crowds. And so begins The King’s Speech.

Scene 7—The King’s Speech

The context is clear. The Sermon on the Mount is given to God’s people so that they might understand the way of the Kingdom as directly taught by Jesus. What are his new people like? How will Jesus teach and interpret the law of God to us? How should we now live in light of his being our King? How should our lives be established and how does the Kingdom flow in and through us as a community? These questions are so important that Jesus takes his followers to school. He instructs us on the way of the eternal Kingdom breaking forth into our world now.

The Kings Speech for Kingdom Servants

In conclusion, I want us to take a look at how desperately we need to have our lives shaped by this sermon in our current day. The late English minister John Stott began his commentary on the Sermon on the Mount with the following striking words that issued a summons to his own generation:

The Sermon on the Mount is probably the best known part of the teaching of Jesus, though arguably it is the least understood, and certainly it is the least obeyed. It is the nearest thing to a manifesto that he ever uttered, for it is his own description of what he wanted his followers to be and to do. To my mind no two words sum up its intention better, or indicate more clearly it’s challenged to the modern world, than the expression ‘Christian counterculture’.”30

Stott was writing in the throes of the counterculture movement in the 1960s and 70s. He noticed a disaffected youth culture frustrated with the status quo of the day where Western civilization and the church might have been seen as two versions of the same oppressive reality.31 His reflection on the church’s conformity to and congruence with culture should be echoed in every generation. We are called to be a countercultural society shaped by the gospel, for the sake of the nations, by extending hope of the gospel of the crucified and risen king. Certainly in our age as well, the church in America risks a conformity to the prevailing cultural moods of our day. Whether it is a capitulation to right wing visions of economic and individualistic living or left-wing visions which mute the need for individual responsibility and morality, the church must not tip into worldly ideology and cultural captivity. Our age also runs a great risk of being into fads and novelty chasing the transient in neglect of the eternal. We must challenge ourselves to see life as more than consumerism, money, sensuality and self-absorption of this age. We have a much higher calling in Christ.

In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus does indeed provide us a calling to a higher reality both now and eternally. In his teaching and example he invades this present darkness with the light of love, truth and passionate beauty. In our world that is in constant fracture and division, Jesus is always forming a counter-cultural community. The world constantly sets up divisions based upon race, class, appearances, nationality or ideology; Jesus knew this to be the status quo of the human condition. Yet it is from this world that he calls a people to become the new community of his church. That church is marked by the forgiving grace of God in the gospel and a new reality defined by his ways and teaching.

The good news of Jesus Christ creates one new man out of divided peoples. It is also different then the status quo of any of the myriad of human created cultures. Though we find echoes of the glory of the image of God in all places on the earth, it is in the unique society of the church that the Spirit and teaching of Jesus takes root. The Old Testament call to Israel to not be as the other nations continues in the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus’ call is “do not be like them” (Matthew 6:8) for we are to resemble our Lord in true righteousness and holiness (See Ephesians 4:17-24).

In the Sermon on the Mount we really see who is blessed in the sight of God. It is according to his principles and not simply those by which we judge one another. In it we receive a high ethical calling to live with one another in supernatural ways. We find that our lives should reflect a contrast as light is to darkness, a savory flavor to the bland and the boring of this life. In the King’s speech we find a fulfillment of the promises and laws given to the prophets of old, realized and brought to completion in the life of Jesus the King. We see that our God’s plans are never thwarted, but always fulfilled in the fullness of his time.

In Jesus’ teaching we find a different foundation for life. One that is eternally established and steadfast in the purposes for which God created us. We represent the rule and reign of King Jesus and extend the hope of his sacrificial love, and life renewing resurrection in the world. We are a signpost of the age to come and a testimony to the world of its accountability to the Almighty God. We call others to new life, the forgiveness of sins and for the requirements of God’s holy law to be fulfilled in us by his Spirit. (Romans 8)

One of Jesus’ followers long ago described the Christian community as being sojourners and strangers (1 Peter 2:11) in this world. And this is what we are. We belong to another realm with our citizenship being from the embassy in Heaven. We love this world so much that at times we stand against it in truth and warning. We love this world so much that we must stand within it for the good of others and holding forth good news of our sacrificial, loving and forgiving God. To quote that early 20th century prophet GK Chesterton, we must hate this world enough to change it, and yet love it enough to think it worth changing.32

In our day there are new calls for the church to put aside the truth and deny what God has given to her in the Holy Scriptures. There are new calls for compromise and calls of ungodly perspectives of Christians towards a lost world. We must be a resistance force against both these urges. We must not abandon Scriptural teaching for the current and contemporary fads of our society. Whether this be related to sex, religion or political correctness. Neither should we forfeit the loving ethic given to us by the Lord Jesus in the name of “being right.” Our calling is to hold forth the biblical gospel of Jesus the King and of his coming kingdom in our day. Neither removing the offense of the cross nor denying the sufficiency of Christ for the salvation of all who will believe. Yet as we hold forth the gospel to a dying world we do not wish to fumble it in our day. Each generation has a responsibility to our creator to be faithful to the end.

For the church not to know the orders of its commanding officer or the way and manner of his kingdom is indeed a tragedy in every generation. Long-ago the King of Kings stood on the side of a hill to teach us so we would not forget his rule or his ways. We have the King’s Speech and we have the school of Jesus in which to learn. Let’s go to school together.

As we head into the sermon I want to give us proper warning that Jesus’ teaching is challenging. It both draws us in and convicts us of our lax attitude towards God and his Kingdom. New Testament scholar DA Carson said it this way:

The more I read these three chapters—Matthew 5, 6 and 7—the more I am both drawn by them and then shamed by them. Their brilliant light draws me like a moth to a spotlight; but the light is so bright that it sears and burns. No room left for forms of piety which are nothing more than veneer and sham.

In other words, we cannot fake a devotion to God as described in the Sermon on the Mount. It must be a work of God’s Spirit in us as we joyfully submit to his rule in our lives.

Join the community of Jacobs Well as we humble ourselves and bow the knee to the King this fall. Join us in the glorious adventure of being taken to school by the crucified and risen one who reigns forever and ever and ever… Amen.

In the year of our Lord 2014,

Reid S. Monaghan



  1. For those who want to look at some of this, see the discussion of the Synoptic Problem and the gospels in my short “An Introduction to the New Testament” available at http://jacobswellnj.org/theology-booklets
  2. Andreas J. Köstenberger, L. Scott Kellum, and Charles L. Quarles, The Cradle, the Cross, and the Crown : An Introduction to the New Testament (Nashville, Tenn.: B & H Academic, 2009), 180.
  3. David L. Turner, Matthew, Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2008), 11.
  4. R. T. France, The Gospel of Matthew, The New International Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Pub., 2007), 15.
  5. W. D. Davies and Dale C. Allison, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Gospel According to Saint Matthew, 3 vols., The International Critical Commentary on the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments (London ; New York: T&T Clark International, 2004), xi.
  6. France, 15.
  7. It is of interest that the word for disciple in Greek is mathetes
  8. France, 17-18.
  9. See Sidebar 4.1 in Köstenberger et al., 182, 183.
  10. For a brief but helpful treatment of the Synoptic gospels and Markan priority seeD. A. Carson, Douglas J. Moo, and Leon Morris, An Introduction to the New Testament, New Testament Studies (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 1992), 19-56.
  11. Köstenberger et al., 188.
  12. For more on exploring alternative thesis to the Synoptic Problem see David Alan Black and David R. Beck, Rethinking the Synoptic Problem (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Academic, 2001).
  13. Turner, 18, 19.
  14. This is in reference to the narrative in Exodus of Moses bringing God’s teaching to his people from a mountain.
  15. John R. W. Stott, The Message of the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) : Christian Counter-Culture, The Bible Speaks Today (Downers Grove, Ill., U.S.A.: Inter-varsity Press, 1978), 21. Emphasis added.
  16. Pentateuch simply refers to the first five books of the Bible, or the books of Moses, Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.
  17. DA Carson provides a clear and helpful explanation about the Bible's use of Kingdom language and imagery in D. A. Carson, The Sermon on the Mount : An Evangelical Exposition of Matthew 5-7 (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Book House, 1978), 11-16.
  18. I must confess that I caught that I had originally typed “Sermon on the Plane” which would have been an anachronism. Not that Jesus would be opposed to preaching on airplanes.
  19. John Calvin viewed the sermon as “a brief summary…collected out of his many and various discourses” See Stott, 22.
  20. Ibid., 24.
  21. New Testament scholar David L. Turner prefers a view that in Matthew 5-7 we have a record that “accurately records the gist (ipsissima vox, “the very voice,” of Jesus) of a historical sermon that Jesus uttered.
  22. Sam Storms, "Introduction to the Sermon on the Mount," Sam Storms, Enjoying God 2014, no. September 19 (2006). http://www.samstorms.com/all-articles/post/introduction-to-the-sermon-on-the-mount.
  23. Brief outline of his life and view is found in the wiki here - "Albert Schweitzer," Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Schweitzer (accessed September 19, 2014).
  24. Storms.
  25. Stott, 29.
  26. Martin Luther, "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God," (1529). http://www.hymntime.com/tch/htm/m/i/g/mightyfo.htm.
  27. Carson, 14.
  28. Davies and Allison, xxiv-xxv.
  29. The following is informed by the brief outline in Iain M. Duguid, Is Jesus in the Old Testament?, First Edition ed., Basics of the Faith (Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R Pub., 2013), 32-36.
  30. Stott, 15.
  31. Ibid., 17.
  32. G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy (New York, London,: John Lane company; John Lane, 1909), 130.
    Carson, 11.



"Albert Schweitzer." Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Schweitzer [accessed September 19, 2014].

Black, David Alan and David R. Beck. Rethinking the Synoptic Problem. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Academic, 2001.

Carson, D. A. The Sermon on the Mount : An Evangelical Exposition of Matthew 5-7. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Book House, 1978.

Carson, D. A., Douglas J. Moo and Leon Morris. An Introduction to the New Testament New Testament Studies. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 1992.

Chesterton, G. K. Orthodoxy. New York, London,: John Lane company; John Lane, 1909.

Davies, W. D. and Dale C. Allison. A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Gospel According to Saint Matthew. 3 vols. The International Critical Commentary on the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments. London ; New York: T&T Clark International, 2004.

Duguid, Iain M. Is Jesus in the Old Testament? First Edition ed. Basics of the Faith. Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R Pub., 2013.

France, R. T. The Gospel of Matthew The New International Commentary on the New Testament. Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Pub., 2007.

Köstenberger, Andreas J., L. Scott Kellum and Charles L. Quarles. The Cradle, the Cross, and the Crown : An Introduction to the New Testament. Nashville, Tenn.: B & H Academic, 2009.

Luther, Martin. "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God." (1529). http://www.hymntime.com/tch/htm/m/i/g/mightyfo.htm.

Storms, Sam. "Introduction to the Sermon on the Mount." Sam Storms, Enjoying God 2014, no. September 19 (2006). http://www.samstorms.com/all-articles/post/introduction-to-the-sermon-on-the-mount.

Stott, John R. W. The Message of the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) : Christian Counter-Culture The Bible Speaks Today. Downers Grove, Ill., U.S.A.: Inter-varsity Press, 1978.

Turner, David L. Matthew Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2008.


© 2014 Jacob’s Well, Reid S. Monaghan