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Matthew 17

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • June 6, In the year of our Lord, 2018

  1. Matthew 17.1–13 | The Transfiguration

    1 Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves; 2 and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light. 3 And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him. 4 Then Peter answered and said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here; if You wish, let us make here three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” 5 While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!” 6 And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their faces and were greatly afraid. 7 But Jesus came and touched them and said, “Arise, and do not be afraid.” 8 When they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only. 9 Now as they came down from the mountain, Jesus commanded them, saying, “Tell the vision to no one until the Son of Man is risen from the dead.” 10 And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?” 11 Jesus answered and said to them, “Indeed, Elijah is coming first and will restore all things. 12 But I say to you that Elijah has come already, and they did not know him but did to him whatever they wished. Likewise the Son of Man is also about to suffer at their hands.” 13 Then the disciples understood that He spoke to them of John the Baptist.

    1. What do you think it would have been like to be present at the transfiguration?
      1. Compare Revelation 1.16
      2. You are going to see something like this after death.
    2. With whom were Moses and Elijah talking?
      1. How would you have liked to have been in on that conversation?
        1. Truly, we shall be able to have conversations with the saints of the past.
        2. With whom would you like to talk? And why?
      2. What was the topic of their discussion? (See Luke 9.28–31.)
    3. What do you think of Peter’s response?
      1. Do we reverence some people as much as we do the Lord or perhaps more so?
      2. Remember First Corinthians 3.11.
    4. What did the voice from the bright cloud say?
      1. Why did the voice say to hear Jesus?
      2. He is the Son of God.
        1. The three apostles heard the voice of the Father!
        2. How would you have acted if you heard the voice of the Father?
    5. Why did Peter want to make tabernacles for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah?
      1. Another Gospel account says that Peter did not know what else to say.
      2. Peter seemed to see the three of them as equals.
    6. How did Jesus treat the three disciples?
      1. He touched them.
      2. He told them not to be afraid.
      3. Decades later Jesus would do this again to John (Rev 1.17).
    7. Why did Jesus tell them not to tell anyone until after He had risen from the dead?
      1. What happened after they looked up?
      2. Seeing Jesus alone would have reinforced what the Father said.
    8. Why did the three ask Jesus about the appearing of Elijah?
      1. Notice the last words of the Lord in the Hebrew Bible.
      2. Malachi 4.5–6
        1. What was the Jewish nation looking to happen literally?
        2. They looked for Elijah to come back.
          1. However, the Lord spoke metaphorically.
          2. Someone would come first who would be so much like Elijah that it would seem he was Elijah.
            1. What characteristic of Elijah did Malachi mention?
            2. What characteristic of Elijah did Jesus mention?
    9. Did the Jews know Elijah when he did come?
    10. What did Jesus say that made the disciples see that Elijah had already come?
  2. Matthew 17.14–18 | Faithless and Perverse Generation

    14 And when they had come to the multitude, a man came to Him, kneeling down to Him and saying, 15 “Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and suffers severely; for he often falls into the fire and often into the water. 16 So I brought him to Your disciples, but they could not cure him.” 17 Then Jesus answered and said, “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him here to Me.” 18 And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very hour.

    1. Why did Jesus call that generation faithless and perverse?
    2. For what purpose did they seek the Lord?
      1. Does Jesus care about our physical ailments?
      2. What does He want us to be concerned about the most?
      3. See Matthew 6.33.
  3. Matthew 17.19–21 | The Disciples Did Not Believe

    19 Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?” 20 So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. 21 However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”

    1. Do you find it amazing that the disciples lacked belief?
      1. What did Jesus mean exactly?
      2. Did they not believe who He was?
      3. Did they not believe in God?
    2. How powerful is faith?
      1. What else did they need for casting out this kind of demon?
      2. How would that help?
  4. Matthew 17.22–23 | Betrayal

    22 Now while they were staying in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of men, 23 and they will kill Him, and the third day He will be raised up.” And they were exceedingly sorrowful.

    1. What two things did Jesus reveal that made His disciples exceedingly sorrowful?
    2. They knew that one of them would turn against Him.
    3. Yet, did they notice that He prophesied of His resurrection?
  5. Matthew 17.24–27 | Why We Should Pay Taxes

    24 When they had come to Capernaum, those who received the temple tax came to Peter and said, “Does your Teacher not pay the temple tax?” 25 He said, “Yes.” And when he had come into the house, Jesus anticipated him, saying, “What do you think, Simon? From whom do the kings of the earth take customs or taxes, from their sons or from strangers?” 26 Peter said to Him, “From strangers.” Jesus said to him, “Then the sons are free. 27 Nevertheless, lest we offend them, go to the sea, cast in a hook, and take the fish that comes up first. And when you have opened its mouth, you will find a piece of money; take that and give it to them for Me and you” (Matthew 17.1–27).

    1. What teaching did Jesus illustrate?
    2. If our the Creator is our Father, and if He is the One who put the government into place, should we have to pay taxes?
      1. If not, why do we pay taxes?
    3. Why did Jesus pay the tax in this unusual way?
      1. It showed Him to be the Creator.
      2. He, and His followers, are not subject to the tax.