Matthew 19


Matthew 19:5

and said, ‘FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH’?

One flesh. When a man and a woman come together in marriage, they create something new – a marital union (Gen. 2:24). The joining together of a man and a woman into one flesh or body has both a physical aspect (see 1 Cor. 6:16), and a spiritual aspect (1 Cor. 6:17).


Matthew 19:6

“So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.”

(a) They are no longer two, but one. The marital union symbolizes the unity the believers have with the Lord (Eph. 5:32).

(b) God. Most of the time when Jesus spoke about God, he called him Father (see entry for Luke 2:49). But when speaking to the religious leaders and those under law, he typically called him God (theos).


Matthew 19:17

And He said to him, “Why are you asking Me about what is good? There is only One who is good; but if you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.”

(a) Why are you asking Me about what is good? Jesus knew the ruler was self-righteous and considered himself a good man. Jesus cut straight to the heart of the man’s sin by immediately challenging his standard of goodness (Rom. 3:12).

(b) There is only One who is good. God alone is the definition of goodness and righteousness.

Self-righteousness is judging yourself by your own standard of righteousness. When you decide what is good and right, perhaps on the basis of your own moral judgment or the law, you are eating from the wrong tree and usurping God’s role as the Righteous Judge. True righteousness comes from trusting in Jesus, the Righteous One (2 Cor. 5:21).


Matthew 19:19

HONOR YOUR FATHER AND MOTHER; and YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.”

(a) Love your neighbor. This law, which comes from the law of Moses (Lev. 19:18), was quoted by Jesus more than once (Matt. 19:19, 22:39, Mark 12:31, Luke 10:27). James called it the royal law (see entry for Jas. 2:8).

(b) As yourself. “Loving others as yourself” can be contrasted with “Loving others as I have loved you” (see entry for John 13:34).

Under the old covenant, you provided the love and whatever else was needed to fulfil the law. But in the new covenant, we are able to love others because of the love we have from God (1 John 4:19). Under the old, you were the supply, but in the new, God supplies all our needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus (Php. 4:19).


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