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The Gospel according to Matthew.
Matthew Twofold in Scope.
pp. 74, 75
We have during the past years devoted some considerable space to the parables and
the miracles of the Gospel according to Matthew, and a consciousness of the great claim
which the epistles of Paul have upon our time, thought and testimony, turned our
attention from a fuller consideration of the teaching of the Gospel as a whole. The
statements of the critic of dispensational truth, which have been touched upon in these
pages, together with some evident misconception held by those who "for the time ought"
to be clearer, lead us to realize that it will not be going over a well-worn subject if we
embark upon an exposition of the Gospel according to Matthew in these pages.
The book opens with a statement which indicates with no uncertainty the theme of the
"The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham"
(Matt. 1: 1).
The word "generation", Greek genesis, means genealogy or pedigree, and indicates
the first 17 verses of the Gospel. Now it is a common saying among many that the gospel
of Matthew is the gospel of the kingdom. This is true, but not true in the sense that some
intend the words. We refer to that view of things that suggests that Matt. 1: 1 reads,
"The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the Son of David" and stops there. This is
but stating half the truth. He was the Son of David, His genealogy establishes His right
to the throne, He therefore was truly King, and this gospel sets forth this aspect so
prominently that it merits the designation, The Gospel of the King and Kingdom. The
other half of the truth that is needed to make perfect balance and to avoid disproportion is
contained in the words `the Son of Abraham". This is a title that is wider than Israel and
the Kingdom, and therefore we must be careful not to teach error either by unconscious
suppression or by undue emphasis.
Christ's ministry as presented by Matthew is twofold. First He is set forth as the Son
of David, and then as the Son of Abraham. Solomon the son of David is the great type of
the kingly element, Isaac the son of Abraham the great type of the Abrahamic feature.
Now this twofold title of Christ not only divides the first verse, but dominates the literary
structure of the whole Gospel; and unless we see this we shall be liable to read into that
which pertains to Christ as Son of Abraham those things which belong to Him only as
Son of David. This twofold character can be clearly seen from the following:--