This coming Sunday we have the privilege to gather together to make much of Christ. We are excited to begin a new series as we look to a new chapter in the book of Matthew.

Matthew has carefully presented Jesus as the Christ—the long-awaited Messiah and King of Israel. His lineage, His conception, His birth, His baptism, His temptation, His righteousness, His words, and His works all testify with undeniable credentials. The Messiah has been manifested. In chapters 5 through 10, His words and works testify to His identity and trustworthiness. Israel has now heard and seen the Christ.

As Matthew takes us into chapters 11 and 12, the Spirit shines a revealing light on Israel’s unbelief. A rising tide of opposition is put on full display and tragically the words of the prophet Isaiah are fulfilled before our eyes: “Keep on hearing, but do not understand; keep on seeing, but do not perceive” (Isaiah 6:9). Israel proves to be “the people who are blind, yet have eyes, who are deaf, yet have ears” (Isaiah 43:8). In this next series, a masterpiece of revelation unfolds. A three-step pattern emerges: two testimonies of unbelief followed by an appeal to belief. And the pattern is repeated three times. Two parts unbelief, one part belief leads to crucifixion. While Israel’s unbelief is stressed, it is not without its counterparts. Indeed, it is through these very means that God proves sovereign and Christ fulfills prophecy. Jesus reveals the truth, but seeing, many do not perceive.

We look forward to our time together this Sunday as we begin our series, “Seeing, Not Perceiving.”