"THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW"
Introduction To The Sermon On The Mount (Mt 5:1-2)
1. In Matthew 5-7, we have recorded the most famous sermon that has
ever been preached…
a. Commonly referred to as "The Sermon On The Mount"
b. It has touched more hearts, and in turn has sparked more sermons
than any other
2. In Mt 5:1-2 , the setting for the sermon is given…
a. He saw the multitudes that were following Him – Mt 4:25
b. He therefore ascended a mountain
1) Many believe this refers to a natural amphitheater between the
"Horns of Hattin", on a slope that arises above Capernaum
(Believers’ Study Bible)
2) This may be the same occasion as "The Sermon On The Plain"
– cf. Lk 6:17-49
c. When His disciples came to Him, He sat down and began to speak
1) It was common to speak while sitting, rather than standing as
we do today
2) Cf. Mt 13:1-2; Jn 8:2
3. What is Jesus talking about in this sermon?
a. What is the main "THEME?"
b. What is the "CONTENT" of this sermon?
[In this study we shall introduce "The Sermon On The Mount" by seeking
to answer these two questions. To begin, let’s determine…]
I. THE "THEME" OF THE SERMON
A. NOTE THE "SETTING" LEADING UP TO THE SERMON…
1. In Mt 3:1-3, we read of the preaching of John the Baptist
a. Who was sent to prepare the way of the Lord
b. The theme of his preaching concerned "the kingdom of
2. In Mt 4, we read of the beginning of Jesus’ ministry
a. After His temptation, Jesus preaches a message similar to
John’s – Mt 4:17
b. His preaching in Galilee pertained to the "gospel of the
kingdom" – Mt 4:23
— Could Jesus’ theme be "the kingdom of heaven"?
B. NOTE A "PHRASE" USED THROUGHOUT THE SERMON…
1. "for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" – Mt 5:3
2. "for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" – Mt 5:10
3. "…shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven" – Mt 5:19
4. "…shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven" – Mt 5:19
5. "…will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven" – Mt 5:20
6. "Your kingdom come" – Mt 6:10
7. "But seek first the kingdom of God" – Mt 6:33
8. ". . . shall enter the kingdom of heaven" – Mt 7:21
— Isn’t Jesus talking about "the kingdom of heaven"?
[Both the setting and His repeated use a particular phrase should lead
us to conclude that the "theme" of Jesus’ sermon on the mount is:
"THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN"
With this in mind, let’s briefly consider the "content" of the sermon
as I offer the following outline…]
II. THE "CONTENT" OF THE SERMON
A. THE "CITIZENS" OF THE KINGDOM…
1. Their character and blessedness – Mt 5:3-12
a. Qualities to be found in those who will be citizens of this
b. The blessings enjoyed by these citizens
2. Their relation to the world – Mt 5:13-16
a. They are the salt of the earth
b. They are the light of the world
B. THE "RIGHTEOUSNESS" OF THE KINGDOM…
1. In contrast to the "traditional interpretations and
applications" of the Law – Mt 5:17-48
a. Jesus has not come to destroy or show disrespect to the Law
1) It will not pass away until it is fulfilled
2) Those who violate it teach contrary to it (while it
exists) will be least in the kingdom
b. Jesus does require that the righteousness of those in the
kingdom exceed the righteousness of the Scribes and
c. He illustrates by a series of contrasts concerning:
1) Murder and anger
4) The swearing of oaths
5) The taking of revenge
6) The treatment of enemies
— In each case His teaching is consistent with the Law,
but not the traditional interpretations and applications
of the Law
2. With respect to man’s relation to God – Mt 6:1-33
a. Charitable deeds
3. With respect to man’s relation to man – Mt 7:1-12
a. Judging others
b. Asking, seeking, knocking
c. The golden rule
C. THE "EXHORTATION TO ENTER" THE KINGDOM…
1. The "beginning" of the way – Mt 7:13-14
a. It will be narrow and difficult
b. Not many will find it
2. The "progress" along the way – Mt 7:15-20
a. Beware of false prophets who are wolves in sheep’s clothing
b. You will know them by their fruits
3. The "end" of the way – Mt 7:21-27
a. In which "sayers" will be contrasted with "doers"
b. In which "hearers" will be contrasted with "doers"
1. In view of its content, we can appreciate why this sermon has been
a. The Magna Carta of His Kingdom
b. The Manifesto of the King
2. Our next study will begin a look at the sermon in closer detail…
a. With the first of two lessons on "The Beatitudes" – Mt 5:3-12
b. In which we examine the character and blessedness of those who
are citizens of the kingdom of heaven
Have you responded to the exhortation to enter the kingdom? Remember
the words of our Lord to Nicodemus…
Jesus answered and said to him, "Most assuredly, I say to you,
unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."
Nicodemus said to Him, "How can a man be born when he is old?
Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?"
Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is
born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God."
(Jn 3:3-5 )