TEXT: Matthew 2:1-4:
1 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,
2 Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.
3 When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.
4 And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born.
After preaching the Gospel every day for 367 days straight throughout the 2016 presidential campaign season, I am preaching the Gospel every day throughout the first 100 days of President Donald Trump’s term. If you think a new president being in office is the only thing needed to save America and ‘make America great again’, you are woefully deceived. The church must follow through and “keep the main thing the main thing: and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents, politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, ‘Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature,’ and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to ‘pray without ceasing’ for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders.” So, we encourage you to pray for the new president, but not to get caught up in the political happenings like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord. And that is what this campaign is all about.
This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”
This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 31, day 398 since Jan. 1, 2016.
Charles Spurgeon said, “Jesus of Nazareth is so potent a factor in the mind of the world that, no sooner is he there, in his utmost weakness, a new-born King, than he begins to reign. Before he mounts the throne, friends bring him presents, and his enemies plot his death.”
At the beginning of each of the Gospels, we are shown the reactions of those who learn that Jesus will be born or has been born. Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, rejoiced when her cousin Mary told her that she was carrying the Son of God. The shepherds glorified and praised God when they heard the news. The wise men hastened to bring gifts to the newborn king. Simeon said that he could die happily once he had laid eyes on the Messiah. Anna gave thanks to the Lord and spoke of the infant Jesus to everyone who was looking for redemption.
But not everyone who heard of Jesus’ birth was happy about it. King Herod who heard the news from the wise men “was troubled.” But not only King Herod, Matthew tells us that “all Jerusalem with him” was troubled. The Greek word translated as “troubled” means: to agitate, to disquiet, to make restless, to cause inward commotion, to take away calmness of mind, to stir up, to render anxious or distressed. Herod did not like this news of the arrival of a new king, a great king, a king heralded by divine movement in the heavens, a king who could inspire pagan astrologers from the east, who were not even Jews, to come looking for him.
Why was Herod so upset about this newborn King of the Jews? Well, Herod was an Edomite ruler whom Rome had placed over Judaea. Technically, his title was “king of the Jews.” But the Jews and the Edomites were enemies in times gone by, and Herod was always on shaky ground with his constituency. He tried to appease them with his great building projects in Jerusalem, most notably, the improvements to the Temple. However, he was also a cruel ruler. William Barclay notes: “He had no sooner come to the throne than he began by annihilating the Sanhedrin, he slaughtered three hundred court officers, he murdered his wife Mariamne, and her mother Alexandra, his eldest son Antipater, and two other sons.” Anyone who questioned Herod’s authority or whom he perceived as a threat to his rule was eliminated. Jerusalem was troubled because Herod was troubled. The Jews knew that once Herod got upset or thought he was being upstaged, bloodshed would soon follow.
But, it is the nature of Jesus to trouble the waters of complacency, to stir up the establishment, to cause consternation among the status quo. In Matthew 10:34, Jesus said, “Think not that I am come to bring peace to the earth: I came not to bring peace, but a sword.” All throughout His ministry, Jesus was in conflict with the authorities of His day, both religious and secular. But He came to stir up a much more important conflict — a conflict in the hearts and minds of men and women. The Bible says that all men are born in bondage to sin; sin reigns in our hearts. Jesus came to challenge the reign of sin. He came to win our allegiance to Him. Those who meet Christ face inner conflict. Will they continue in sin or convert to Christ? Will they let sin continue to reign in their hearts or will they bow to King Jesus and make Him the Lord of their life?
Albert B. Simpson summed up this most important question in his hymn, “What Will You Do With Jesus?”
Jesus is standing in Pilate’s hall,
Friendless, forsaken, betrayed by all;
Hearken! what meaneth the sudden call?
What will you do with Jesus?
Jesus is standing on trial still,
You can be false to Him if you will,
You can be faithful through good or ill:
What will you do with Jesus?
Will you evade him as Pilate tried?
Or will you choose Him, whate’er betide?
Vainly you struggle from Him to hide:
What will you do with Jesus?
Will you, like Peter, your Lord deny?
Or will you scorn from His foes to fly,
Daring for Jesus to live or die?
What will you do with Jesus?
“Jesus, I give Thee my heart today!
Jesus, I’ll follow Thee all the way,
Gladly obeying Thee!” will you say:
“This I will do with Jesus!”
What will you do with Jesus?
Neutral you cannot be;
Someday your heart will be asking,
‘What will He do with me?’
Is the King troubling your heart? Has He stirred your soul? What will you do with Him? He alone can save you from your sins and the punishment of sin. If you want to place your faith and trust in Him, here is how you can do that today:
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.