Tuesday, August 13, 2013
“The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here. The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here” (Matthew 12:41,42 KJV).
What did our Lord Jesus Christ mean in today’s Scripture?
Jesus confirmed “[the Ninevites] repented at the preaching of Jonas” (today’s Scripture; cf. Luke 11:32) and “for [the queen of Sheba] came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon” (today’s Scripture; cf. Luke 11:31). He thus reminded Israel: “Behold, a greater than Jonas is here” and “behold, a greater than Solomon is here.” He is twice-stressing whom He is to get Israel’s attention. Paraphrasing, “Look, I am the Prophet whom JEHOVAH God has promised you! Look, I am the King whom JEHOVAH God has promised you!”
The Lord Jesus is greater than Solomon because He (Jesus) is God (Hebrews 1:6-12). Unlike Solomon, He will reign over all the world forever (Daniel 2:44; Zechariah 14:9; Revelation 11:15)—Solomon’s reign was limited to 40 years in Israel before he died (1 Kings 11:42,43). Unlike Solomon, Jesus Christ will never die, and His reign will never end! Jesus Christ, being sinless, will be a much wiser King over Israel than Solomon ever was!
The Lord Jesus is greater than Jonas because He (Jesus) is God (John 1:1). Unlike Jonah, He “has the words of eternal life” (John 6:68) meant for all the world, but particularly Israel—Jonah only preached to the city Nineveh (Jonah 1:2; Jonah 3:3), and the message he preached was limited divine revelation, whereas Jesus Christ taught Israel a much fuller explanation of God’s Word. Unlike Jonah, Jesus Christ did not disobey Father God, and His message is the world’s only hope if they are to escape God’s wrath in the lake of fire… far worse than the wrath Nineveh ever saw!
Let us now conclude this devotionals arc….