Sunday, January 12, 2020 am                                   Teachings of Jesus 2020 Index                            MP3                    PP

Why Study the Teachings of Jesus?


Today, we begin addressing our theme for 2020.  This year we are going to address the teachings of Jesus.  Like so many themes, this is very extensive, and we will not be able to address everything Jesus taught.  First, the gospels comprise about 25% of the entire New Testament. Second, in reality, the whole Bible is about the teachings of Jesus.  But, when we understand who Jesus is, it ought to be clear that we should focus on His teachings (but not to the neglect of the rest of the New Testament). 

 I.                     Why Study the teachings of Jesus?

a.       Because of who Jesus is.  He is Savior, Lord and God.  As Jesus declared to His disciples, “If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father.”  John 1:18 – while no one has seen the Father, the Son declared Him.  That is in the introductory remarks of John.  Then at the conclusion of His ministry, as He speaks with His apostles, He reminds Philip of that (John 14:9)

b.       Because we need Him - they are life.  Acts 4:12, John 20:30-31

c.        We are to be disciples of Jesus.  Matthew 28:18-20 – “make disciples”.  Disciples follow the teachings of their Master.  Galatians 2:20

d.       Because His teachings are the foundation the rest of the New Testament (and the Old Testament for that matter) and of the church.  2 John 9 – “the doctrine of Christ”, what is it?
Many introductions to epistles establish this – Romans 1:1-5, Hebrews 1:1-4, 1 John 1:1-3, etc.

e.       Because by studying what and how Jesus taught, we can learn how to properly teach and interact with others.  1 Corinthians 11:1, we are to imitate Christ 9cf. Ephesians 5:1 – imitate God).
We understand that as Christians, we are all to be teachers in one way or another (Hebrews 5:12-6:1, 1 Peter 3:15).  We teach by example (letting our light shine), in our daily interactions and conversations with others, as well as specific opportunities to teach.  HOW we teach others is crucial to increasing our chance for success. 
As we study the teachings of Jesus, we will see several qualities that we can apply in whatever opportunities we have to teach others and ourselves. 

 II.                   The teachings of Jesus – what we will address.

a.       This study is not so much about the life of Jesus though obviously it will touch on that. 

b.       We will begin with the Sermon on the mount – an example of the public teaching of Jesus

c.        We will examine some of the parables Jesus taught and why

d.       We will notice some of the conversations Jesus had with others – We want to address HOW Jesus dealt with others, and then notice some of the conversations He had such as the Samaritan woman (John 4), Nicodemus the Pharisee (John 3), His disciples on various occasions, His apostles, Martha,  etc. 

e.       We will then examine how He defended Himself and His claims – primarily, we will look at some of His discourses in John about this, as well as His claims of deity, etc.

f.         Finally, we will then look at numerous subjects that He addressed in His teachings – We will begin by noting how Jesus dealt with various subjects, including controversial issues.  We may address issues such as the coming judgment, MDR, the cost of discipleship

 III.                 Jesus, the Master Teacher

a.         Jesus, the Master Teacher. 

                                                   i.      There is no greater pattern of teaching that our Lord Jesus Christ.  Being the Son of God and knowing His purpose, Jesus was able to teach in every situation. 
We can learn from Him how to teach others,

                                                 ii.      According to one source, Jesus was referred to as a teacher some 29 times, by disciples, seeks and occasionally enemies who were trying to entrap Him.  Combined, the noun (teacher) and verb (teach) is used some 90 times addressing Him and His work. 

                                                iii.      He was recognized as a teacher.

1.       Called Rabbi – a term for a Jewish teacher and scholar recognized for his understand of scripture.  Jesus was called a Rabbi by His disciples – John 1:38 (Peter and Andrew), John 1:49 (Nathaniel), John 9:2, 11:8 (His disciples), etc.

2.       Called Master – a title of leadership (Luke 8:24 – when Jesus calmed the storm, :1713 – ten lepers, etc.)

3.       Called Teacher – Matthew 8:19 (I will follow you wherever…); Matthew 19:16 – by the rich, young ruler; Matthew 9:11, 22:16 (by His enemies)
Jesus even acknowledged that He is a teacher – John 13:14, Matthew 10:25, etc.

                                                iv.      He knew how to teach
He knew people (better than we do because He knew what was in their hearts – John 2:25).  He knew the nature of men, personalities and even each individual (e.g. John 1:47 - Nathanael)
- He knew His subject matter – perfectly, He knew what He was talking about.  He did not misquote or manipulate the truth. 
- He knew how to teach – He used illustrations, made relevant historical references, used scripture and even observations about life.
- He also asked thought provoking questions that moved His audience to respond, one way or another. 

                                                  v.      He was diligent in His efforts – Matthew 4:23, He went about Galilee teaching in synagogues, preaching the gospel and healing, etc.    John 18:20, even defending Himself before Annas He noted how He had been busy. 

                                                vi.      This is why we can learn from the teachings of Jesus.

b.       How did Jesus teach?

                                                   i.      Both publicly and privately – we find sermons and we find personal conversations, sometimes to small groups and other times to individuals.

                                                 ii.      As one having authority - Matthew 7:28-29 – at the conclusion of the Sermon on the Mount.  And that is established throughout that sermon (e.g. “You have heard…But I say to you…”)
He was clearly different – John 7:46, when the temple officers were sent to take Jesus, they returned without Him.  When asked why, they responded, “No man ever spoke like this.”
He established His deity – a factor that clearly set Him apart.  John’s gospel in particular deals with this as Jesus presents witnesses (John 5:31-47) as well as His “I am” statements (John 8:58 – “Before Abraham was, I AM”).  Matthew 9:4-6 – He gave proof that He has power to forgive sins.

                                                iii.      He taught to be understood – His teaching was with wisdom.  While His parables hid His message from some, it was because of their own hardened hearts (cf. Matthew 13:11-17, John 5:39-40 – they were not willing to come to Him to have life), they were actually design to enlighten those who would genuinely search. 
Whether it was parables to explain the points He was trying to make, answering or challenging His critics abuse of the LOM, explaining what one needed to do, warning about spiritual dangers, or presenting thought provoking questions (etc), Jesus was very wise.  He knew what to say, how to say it and when.  He even taught His disciples to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves (Matthew 10:16). 
Mark 12:37 tells us “And the common people heard Him gladly.

                                                iv.      He taught with love and compassion – there is no greater example of a proper attitude in teaching others than Jesus.  He genuinely cared about others (Matthew 9:36, 15:32, 20:34, etc.)  He loved the rich, young ruler(Mark 10:21); he forgave sins (Matthew 9:2, Luke 7:47 – forgiving the woman in Simon the Pharisee’s house, etc.)
That is why He taught so much. 
He even showed love and compassion as He thought about His enemies – Luke 19:41-44 – weeping over Jerusalem (Matthew 23:37-39)
We must have loving motives as we try to teach others. 

                                                  v.      He taught consistently
His teaching was non-contradictory.  He properly applied God’s laws.  While He presented demands in His teaching, it was based upon what the word of God really said, INCLUDING proper motives (which is why the rich, young ruler went away sorrowful – he had great possessions. 
He lived what He taught – Acts 1:1-2, Jesus did and taught.  John 8:46 He asked, “Which of you convicts Me of sin?”  He kept the Law and taught them to keep the Law, because it was STILL God’s law for the Jews at that time.

                                                vi.      He taught personally - He knew His audience and what they needed. 
The Sermon on the Mount (which He likely taught in different forms continually) was directed to a general audience.  But  He also engaged in conversations and was interested in the well-being of individuals.  He catered the message to the occasion, (even when unpleasant), and He knew how to relate to His audience.  His message to Nicodemus, the Samaritan woman, the rich, young ruler, Mary and Martha when He went to eat with them, His apostles or certain disciples, on various occasions were very personal.  He taught what was needed – even when it wasn’t pleasant.

                                              vii.      He used scripture – He often appealed to the Old Law to establish who He was and how He came to fulfill it.  We will see this as we study the Sermon on the Mount (esp. Matthew 5:17-20, and then throughout).  When challenged about His actions and teachings He would often quote Moses or other prophets.  John 5:39-47 – Jesus spoke of how the scriptures testified of Him.
When dealing with temptations, He used scripture (Matthew 4:4, 7, 10).

                                             viii.      He taught courageously.  He was not afraid of corrupt leaders, or those who would reject Him.  He knew the truth that needed to be preached.  That’s why He exposed the corrupt leaders, often to their face (cf.  Matthew 23).  He spoke with Pilate what was needed. 
He told the Samaritan woman all things she ever did.  He warned Peter that he would betray Jesus 3 times; He told the rich, young ruler what he lacked, etc. 


And thus we are introduced to the teachings of Jesus that we will address this year.  In spite of His ability though, He was unable to convert everyone.  In fact, most did not fully accept Him.  But those who were teachable, He would have successfully taught.  

And that brings us to one other observation – the teachings of Jesus are here for us to learn and live, but they are meaningless if we are not willing to apply them – Luke 6:46, Matthew 7:21-23.

So this year, let us seek to learn from Jesus, not only WHAT to teach, but also HOW to teach in various situations AND how to live for Him.  Think about it!