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Bible Commentaries
Matthew 3

Gann's Commentary on the BibleGann on the Bible

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Verse 1

Matthew 3:1 -- 1-12 John the Baptist Prepares the Way

In those days -- Matthew intended his narrative to embrace the whole time of Jesus’ life, and the meaning of “in those days" references while Jesus still dwelt at Nazareth.

John the Baptist -- Or John the baptizer, so called from his call for people to repent and be baptized. Baptism was the immersion of candidates upon their submission to his message.

John the Baptist came preaching -- It is not probable that John began to baptize or preach long before the Saviour entered on his ministry; and, consequently, from the time that is mentioned in the close of the second chapter to that mentioned in the beginning of the third, an interval of twenty-five years or more elapsed.

preaching ... Mark 1:14-15; The word rendered “preach” means to proclaim in the manner of a public crier; to make proclamation. The discourses recorded in the New Testament are mostly brief, sometimes consisting only of a single sentence, but they may have just been an outline, or an abbreviation of the full message. They were public proclamations of some great truth. Such appear to have been the discourses of John, calling people to repentance.

in the wilderness of Judea -- This country was situated along the Jordan and the Dead Sea, to the east of Jerusalem. It was a dry mountainous, rough, and thinly settled country, and better suited for pasture than for tilling.

Verse 2

Matthew 3:2

KINGDOM at hand ...

John preached it - Matthew 3:2; Mark 1:14-15

Jesus preached it - Matthew 4:17; Matthew 4:23

The Seventy preached it - Luke 10:1-10; Luke 10:9

The Apostles preache it - Matthew 10:1-7; Matthew 10:7

Peter given the keys ot it - Matthew 16:19

Some alive in Jesus’ day would see it come - Mark 9:1

See note at Romans 14:17

"At hand"- Matthew 3:2, "in a short while"

To come in first century with "Power"- Mark 9:1,

But "Power" was to come with Holy Ghost- Acts 1:8,

This happened on the day of Pentecost- Acts 2:1-4.

The Kingdom was in existence in Paul’s day- Colossians 1:13.

The Kingdom was in existence in the Apostle John’s day - Revelation 1:9

God’s Kingdom on earth is the Church- Matthew 16:18-19.

Verse 9

Matthew 3:9

Abraham our father . . They regarded it as sufficient righteousness that they were descended from so holy a man as Abraham. Compare John 8:33-37, John 8:53. John assured them that this was a matter of small consequence in the sight of God.

Jesus’ point seems to be that the privileges of birth, avail nothing where there is not righteousness of life.

Some have supposed, however, that by these stones he meant the Roman soldiers, or the pagan, who might also have attended on his ministry; and that God could “of them” raise up children to Abraham.

Verse 11

Matthew 3:11

baptize with the Holy Ghost ... This happened at Pentecost in Acts 2; Mark 1:8;

and with fire ... cf. Matthew 3:12 shows the context, a burning away of the chaff; The baptism of the Holy Spirit was a promise, but the baptism of fire is a threat of punishment opon those who do no bring forth good fruit.

Verse 13

Matthew 3:13 -- 13-17 John Baptizes Jesus

Verse 15

Matthew 3:15

- - - - - - -

Easton, Baptism, Christian

John refused at first to confer his baptism on Christ, for he understood not what he had to do with the “baptism of repentance.” But Christ said, “’suffer it to be so now,’ NOW as suited to my state of humiliation, my state as a substitute in the room of sinners.” His reception of baptism was not necessary on his own account. It was a voluntary act, the same as his act of becoming incarnate. Yet if the work he had engaged to accomplish was to be completed, then it became him to take on him the likeness of a sinner, and to fulfill all righteousness (Matthew 3:15).

- - - - -

Verse 17

Matthew 3:17

Voice... 1) at His baptism Matthew 3:17; 2) at the transfiguration Matthew 17:5; 3) in the temple, John 12:28;

Bibliographical Information
Gann, Windell. "Commentary on Matthew 3". Gann's Commentary on the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/gbc/matthew-3.html. 2021.
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