– The Prophecies of the King: Fulfilled by Christ Matthew 1 – 4
– The Genealogy and Birth of Christ: His True Glory as Messiah Matthew 1
– The Childhood of Christ: His Reception and Persecution Matthew 2
– The Ministry of John the Baptist & the Baptism of Christ Matthew 3
– The Temptation of Christ in the Wilderness Matthew 4:1-11
– The Beginning of Christ’s Public Ministry Matthew 4:12-25
– The Principles of the Kingdom: The Sermon on the Mount Matthew 5 – 7
– The Beatitudes: The Blessedness of the Subjects of the Kingdom Matthew 5:1-12
– Salt and Light: The Twofold Influence of Believers on the World Matthew 5:13-16
– The Principles of the Kingdom in Connection with the Law Matthew 5:17-48
– Having a Right Focus in Connection with Spiritual Things Matthew 6:1-18
– Having a Right focus in Connection with Material Things Matthew 6:19-34
– Having a Right focus in Connection with Social Things Matthew 7:1-6
– The Characteristic Virtues Needed for Subjects of the Kingdom Matthew 7:7-29
– The Powers of the Kingdom: Demonstrated by Signs Matthew 8 – 9
– First Dispensational Outline: A Leper, Centurion, and Mother-in-law Matthew 8:1-17
– (The Cost of Discipleship) Matthew 8:18-22
– The Messiah’s Power Over Every Other Force Matthew 8:23 – 9:8
– (The Nature Of Discipleship) Matthew 9:9-17
– Second Dispensational Outline: The Ruler’s Daughter & Infirm Woman Matthew 9:18-26
– The Messiah’s Power To Heal Israel’s Spiritual Condition Matthew 9:27-34
– The Preaching of the Kingdom: Twelve Disciples Sent to Lost Sheep Matthew 10
– The Heart a Disciple must have to be Useful in Service Matthew 9:35-38
– The Delegation of Authority to the Twelve Matthew 10:1-4
– The Sphere and Nature of their Work Matthew 10:5-8
– Dependence for Their Needs, Acceptance or Rejection Matthew 10:9-15
– Things for the Preachers of the Gospel of the Kingdom to Remember Matthew 10:16-42
– Conclusion of Commission, Continuation of Ministry Matthew 11:1
– The Prevention of the Kingdom: Christ Rejected by Israel Matthew 11 – 12
– John’s Doubts: The Significance of the Coming Dispensational Change Matthew 11:2-19
– Judgment to Fall on the Northern Towns because of Unbelief Matthew 11:20-24
– A Faithful Remnant Preserved for the Father’s Delight Matthew 11:25-30
– Rejection Concerning Jesus’ Authority over the Sabbath Matthew 12:1-21
– Rejection Concerning the Source of Jesus’ Power: the Unpardonable Sin Matthew 12:22-37
– Israel’s Unbelief would Result in Solemn Judgment Matthew 12:38-45
– The Lord Cuts His Ties with Nature (My Mother and My Brethren) Matthew 12:46-50
– The Postponement of the Kingdom: A Change in Dispensations Matthew 13 – 17
– The Parables of the Kingdom of Heaven Matthew 13:1-52
– The King in Withdrawal from the Nation of Israel Matthew 13:53 – 15:39
– Coming Changes: The Assembly and the Millennium Matthew 16 – 17
– The Principles of the Kingdom in Mystery Matthew 18 – 20:28
– Having Grace in Our Interactions with Others Matthew 18
– Having God’s Mind in Our Views on Natural Things Matthew 19
– Having Humility and Contentment in Our Service Matthew 20:1-28
– The Presentation of the King: The Son of David and Son of Man Matthew 20:29 – 25:46
– Symbolic Actions: The Presentation of Christ to the Nation Matthew 20:29 – 21:22
– Parables & Questions: The Hardness of the Jewish Leaders Exposed Matthew 21:23 – 22:46
– Seven Woes: The Moral Condemnation of the Jewish Leaders Matthew 23
– The Olivet Discourse: the Coming of Christ Matthew 24 – 25
– The Persecution of the King: Christ’s Death and Resurrection Matthew 26 – 28
– Events Preceding the Death of Christ Matthew 26:1-56
– The Trials of Christ Matthew 26:57 – 27:26
– The Crucifixion and Death of Christ Matthew 27:27-66
– The Resurrection of Christ Matthew 28
Matthew has a strong dispensational line of teaching that deals with the changes in God’s ways with His people on the earth. The greatest change that is emphasized is the setting aside of Israel for a time in the ways of God, and the blessing of the Gentiles in the interim. The future blessing of Israel through a remnant is also brought forward. The great theme of the book is the kingdom of heaven; it was prophesied of in the Old Testament, its manifestation was postponed because of Israel’s unbelief, but it has been set up in mystery form until the Church period comes to a close. Read more…  Matthew helps us to get established in the truth of the Christian dispensation, although this book was primarily written to the Jewish people. Throughout the gospel there are a number of dispensational outlines; i.e. dispensational changes illustrated by symbols and actions. I have tried to capture some of these in the outline of the book, and designated those sections containing dispensational progressions as follows:
             = a Dispensational Outline
The purpose(s) of the book. There are a number of purposes for the Gospel of Matthew. For the Jews, Matthew shows that Jesus is their Messiah, as the fulfillment of all the Old Testament prophecies. Matthew also establishes the nation’s guilt in rejecting their Messiah. But for Christians, Matthew serves to establish us in the broad changes of God’s dispensational ways.
A different style of teaching is seen in the gospels compared to the epistles. In the epistles the truth is stated outright, but in the gospels the Spirit of God teaches more often through symbolic actions of our Lord, and through parables. Both the epistle-style (direct) and gospel-style (indirect) are very good and helpful methods of teaching, but we need to understand the difference. If we do not understand that the gospels present a different style of teaching, we will not get the full benefit from all the miracles and parables which are recorded in them. At the same time, there needs to be added carefulness when seeking to apprehend the true interpretation of indirect teaching. It is easy to read things into the scripture that the Holy Spirit never put there. As with other parts of scripture, we need to read the gospels in the light of all the other scriptures.
The fulfillment of prophecy. In Matthew we see many of the Old Testament prophecies concerning the Messiah fulfilled by Jesus. The Spirit of God acted in the capacity of “the porter” (John 10:3) to show, from the Old Testament scriptures, that Jesus was the Christ. This is highlighted in the first four chapters especially.

Dispensations or administrations are the various ordered dealings of God with men on the earth at different times. The Children of Israel in the Old Testament were in a different dispensation than we are in today. In the Millennium, inhabitants of the earth will live in a different dispensation than we are in today. Having an understanding of these changes in God's dealings is tremendously important. Our behavior as Christians is largely based on the principles that God has given to us in the present dispensation.

Read more… The book of Matthew deals with dispensational changes relating to the rejection of Messiah by Israel. Particularly, the changes involve: the setting aside of Israel, God turning to the Gentiles, the restoration of Israel through a remnant, and the final blessing of Israel in the Millennium.
The seed-plot of the New testament. Just as the book of Genesis is the seed-plot of the Old Testament (having the elements of promise, government, election, faith, and resurrection, etc.), so Matthew has the seeds of New Testament doctrine, although they are not brought out in their full depth in Matthew. To give some examples:
  • Practical Christian conduct (ch.5-7)
  • The failure of the Christian testimony (ch.13)
  • The assembly (ch.16 & 18)
  • Prophecy and the coming of Christ (ch.24-25)
  • Christ’s glory in the kingdom (ch.17)
It is important to see that this “seed plot” is painted on a Jewish backdrop. Romans 15:8 tells us that “Jesus Christ became a minister of the circumcision.” Christianity did not properly begin until Christ rose from the dead, ascended to the Father, and sent down the Holy Spirit. Christ’s ministry on earth was primarily to the circumcision. But in that ministry we see – by miracle and parable – the seeds of New Testament doctrine, particularly the setting aside of Israel and the bringing in of a new order.
Connection between Matthew, John, and Paul. Matthew documents the rejection of Jesus as the Christ, and John begins with His rejection as a forgone conclusion! In Matthew, man's rejection of the Christ is the cause of Him retreating into His eternal identity as the Son of God (Matt. 11:17, Matt. 16:16), but just mentioned in a kernel-form. Then in John, the glories of the Son of God and the revelation of the Father are fully treated of. In Paul's writings, we have the glories of the Son as a foregone conclusion, and the main subject is the unfolding of those blessings that are ours as associated with the Person of the Son! There is a doctrinal progression therefore from Matthew to John, and from John to Paul.
Foregone conclusion
Old Testament history of Israel
Main subject
Christ presented and
rejected by His people
Foregone conclusion
Christ presented and
rejected by His people
Main subject
The glories of the Son,
the Father revealed
Foregone conclusion
The glories of the Son,
the Father revealed
Main subject
Our blessings in
association with Christ
Four gospels, Four perspectives:
  • Matthew - written for the Jew
  • Mark - written for the Roman
  • Luke - written for the Greek
  • John - written for the Church
We can all learn and enjoy each gospel, but they are understood best when we know the perspective they are written from.
Four gospels, Four themes:
  • Matthew – Jesus, the King of the Jews
  • Mark – Jesus, the Perfect Servant
  • Luke – Jesus, the Perfect Man
  • John – Jesus, as God Himself in the Person of the Son
The synoptic gospels are Matthew, Mark, and Luke because they give a short synopsis of the Lord’s life from beginning to end. John doesn’t do that, he focuses on the Lord’s ministry in and around Jerusalem. In the synoptic Gospels, we have Christ presented to man to be received, but man fails the test and Christ is rejected. In John, Christ is rejected by man and Israel from the beginning, and God’s sovereign ways in grace and resurrection are brought in. Another difference is the audience. In the synoptic gospels we often have Jesus preaching to multitudes, but in John He is very often seen in a pastoral role, speaking to individuals... and it is to those individuals that He reveals the deepest truth of His Person!


  1. Kelly, William. Lectures on the Gospel of Matthew. Loizeaux Brothers, 1943.
  2. Darby, J. N. Synopsis of the Books of the Bible. G. Morrish, 1940.
  3. Hole, Frank B. The Gospels and Acts. Scripture Truth Publications, 2007.
  4. Ironside, H. A. Expository Notes on the Gospel of Matthew. Loizeaux Bros., 1982.
  5. Bellett, J. G. The Evangelists: Papers on the Four Gospels. Loizeaux Bros.
  6. Darby, J. N. Notes on the Gospel of Matthew. G. Morrish, 1900.