The New Testament consists of some 27 books written by at least 8, if not 9, authors. The earliest may have been James, written possibly as early as AD 48; and the last was likely the Revelation, written by John, perhaps as late as AD 96. What is truly fascinating about the New Testament is that it simply tells of one message. All of the books and writers, over a span of nearly 5 decades say the very same thing! Even more amazing, is that very same thing, itself consists of 10 separate and distinct component parts.
Imagine trying to get any 8 or 9 people to all agree as to what someone else’s message was, as well as what its only-10 constituent parts were. You know that can’t be done! There must be something supernatural, even divine, about a book that comes to us like that. Sure, it might seem like circular reasoning to ‘prove’ the New Testament is the Word of God by the New Testament; but, when you can demonstrate by the New Testament itself that it is uniquely something that man cannot do, that’s got to count for something!
We’ve gone thru Matthew chapters 1 thru 13, so far, but we’re going to back up a bit into chapter 12, and then begin to take up the parables of chapter 13. We have been examining Matthew by employing The New Testament Literacy Tool of The 10 Essential Elements of The Real New Testament Message. By doing so, we had uncovered 9 of the 10 Essential Elements by the time we found the one numbered 7, believe, in chapter 8. We noted at that time, that only #5, the Gospel had yet to be found. Now, however, with Matthew chapter 12 and verses 38 thru 40, we have, with Jesus giving unbelieving and rejecting Jewish religious leaders, the sign of Jonah, a first allusion to #5, the Gospel, with His mention of being 3 days and 3 nights in the heart of the earth. He was speaking of His death and resurrection; the 2 elements of the Gospel message of the New Testament. The Gospel message, itself, can be distilled down to 10 easy-to-remember words; ‘Christ died for our sins and rose from the dead’! With this mention, we have now found all 10 of The Essential Elements of The Real New Testament Message in the Gospel According to Matthew. We’ll find this very same sort of thing in every book of the New Testament. There’s One God, one New Testament, one message, and 10 component parts. Know those 10 parts, and the rest all comes together for you. Believe and obey the 10 parts of the message and you’ll know God and come into the possession of eternal life to be enjoyed forever with Him in His Kingdom!
In chapter 13, verses 1 thru 9, and 18 thru 23, we have The Parable of the Sower. There’s one ‘seed,’ the message about the kingdom, but 4 soils. Three of the soils received the seed, but only one was fruitful. Which soil are you? It’s what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell