In Matthew 4 Jesus begins to advance His messianic kingdom. This chapter gives us a picture of what those initial steps in the kingdom advanced looked like. Amazingly we find that the initial steps are what should characterize kingdom advance even in our own day. So lets read this chapter today with the question, “What does kingdom advance look like?” According to this chapter there are at least three aspects to kingdom advance.
1) Victory over Satan (v.1-11) : In this section Jesus is tempted by the devil and in every temptation He fights with one weapon. That one weapon is the Word of God. It is the only weapon that will equip us in overcoming temptation. As you make the commitment to read through the word this year ask the Lord to continually make you more competent in wielding it as the sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6::17) to fight against temptation.
2) Proclamation of the kingdom (12-17) : Notice the doorway Jesus stresses for entrance into the kingdom, namely, “repentance”. Let us commit this year in our personal evangelism to speak the truth in love to such a degree that we tell men and women what kind of response the Gospel requires. They must not only, “come to church” but turn their thinking, feeling, and willing away from sin and toward God!
3) Making of Disciples (v.18-22): Or we should probably say, “Disciple makers”. Notice Jesus is not only concerned with catching “fish” but making “fishermen”. Let us commit this year to personally disciple at least one person with the hope and intent and expectation that they would in turn disciple someone else. Kingdom growth is measured more by multiplication than addition.