Commands from Jesus, Part 1-Matthew

Welcome  I am happy to share a four-part devotional this week on the commands of Jesus.  There were a couple of different points of inspiration for this topic I chose for this week.  First, when I shared my post Action Steps earlier in the month, it really made me think about other “actions” we should be taking on our daily Christian walks.  The other source for this idea was my recent reading of Lysa TerKeurst’s Becoming More than a Good Bible Study Girl.  On page 172, there is a section titled “has my commands and obeys them.”  Lysa writes that if we take a look at the four Gospels we will find many passages that state the commands of Jesus for how to live our daily lives.  She shares two of these “big” commands, but challenges us to take an exercise in our studies to find the other commands.  Were we aware of these commands?  Are we willing to obey them?  Are they easy or difficult to obey?  I’m going to leave it to you to answer those personal questions about the commands, but I would like to take a walk through the Gospels and find as many of these commands as I can.  I don’t know about you, but I can always use lessons, or at the very least reminders, on how to live my life as Jesus has commanded.  So we will start today in Matthew.  We will look at Mark on Tuesday, Luke on Wednesday, and John on Thursday.  I won’t be discussing every single command or even going into great detail.  I just want to take a walk through these books of the New Testament and point out some things I found.  Even when I think I know a book of the New Testament pretty well, I inevitably learn something new each time I study with intention and purpose.  I hope you can benefit from that experience, too.

Food For Thought-Commands in Matthew  The book of Matthew is the first book included in our New Testament Bible.  It is the longest of the four gospels with 28 chapters.  I found the first command to be in chapter 4, verse 17 as “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.”  I found most of the commands, or action steps for Christians, to be stated in chapters 5-7.  This could possibly include the “Beatitudes” listed in chapter five.  I feel in this lesson Jesus is commanding us to be meek, merciful, pure, and peaceful (v. 5-9.)  Here are additional commands I found in chapters 5-7:

*Rejoice and be glad (5:12)

*Let your light shine before men (5:16)

*Teach the commands (5:19)

*Reconcile your griefs with others (5:24)

*Do not swear, but keep your promises (5:34, 37)

*Give to those who ask, and give even more (5:41, 42)

*Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you (5:44)

*Give to others, but privately, without attention or expectation (6:4)

*PRAY (6:5-13)

*Forgive (6:14)

*Do not worry (6:25, 34)

*Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness (6:33)

*Do not judge others (7:1, 2)

*Ask, seek, knock (7:7, 8)

*The “Golden Rule”: “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” (7:12)

*Watch out for false prophets (7:15)

I also found two important commands in chapter 10: acknowledge Him and follow Him (10:32, 38)


Jesus taught many lessons through parables beginning in chapter 13.  These are great lessons and are told in this format so we can easily understand and apply them to our lives.  While excellent life lessons, I have not included parable stories as commands in this list.  Here are the commands I found in the second half of the Gospel of Matthew:

*Have courage (14:27)

*Have faith (17:20)

*Be humble (18:4)

*Forgive (18:21-22, 35)

*Stay married to the same person (19:6, 9)

*Obey these commandments: do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not lie, honor your father and mother, love your neighbor (19:17-19)

*Choose Jesus Christ over wealth (19:21)

*Be ready and willing to serve (20:26-28)

*Be humble (23:12)

*Keep watch (24:42)

*Go and teach them (28:18-20)

Finally, I am going to share what is labeled in my NIV Bible as “The Greatest Commandment.”  The Pharisees considered themselves experts in the Law and often tested Jesus.  So in chapter 22, verse 36, Jesus is asked, “Which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”  Jesus replied the following in verses 37-40: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’  This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  All the Law and Prophets hang on these two commandments.”  It has often been stated in sermons and Bible study groups and classes that if we follow these two “great commands,” all other commands naturally fall into place and will be obeyed as well.

From “Commands From Jesus-Part 1, Matthew,”

As I look at these commands from Jesus, I may not necessarily be learning anything new, but I am definitely reminded about my own actions and obedience.  To be a Christian means to obey the commands of Christ and these commandments that I have listed are taken straight from scripture from the teachings of Jesus.  I have some areas I need to work on…humility, forgiveness, giving, service.  But if we do not immerse ourselves in study of Jesus’ teachings, it is easy to forget, or simply overlook, some of these very important commands.

Today’s Scripture  Dive in to the book of Matthew today, or this week.  Pay special attention to the teachings and commands of Jesus.  Don’t just take my word for it (ever!), go check out these verses for yourselves.  I’m going to share one last passage from Matthew for today, regarding the authority of Jesus in his teachings.

Matt. 7:28-29  “When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.”

Today’s Recipe  I noticed in my reading of Matthew that there were a few references to bread and yeast.  Obviously these are food items familiar with the people of the time, or Jesus would not have referenced them in his teachings and parables intended to be understood by everyone.  Loaves of bread even became part of Jesus’ miracles.  Yeast bread is indeed one of my favorite items to bake and I find it to be a good fit here today.  I am sharing the recipe for my Mom’s Rapid Rise Rolls.  My mom has always been well known for her cooking and baking and these rolls have often been one of her most requested recipes.  I hope you enjoy them as much as my family has enjoyed them through the years.

My Mom’s Rapid Rise Roll Recipe (makes 1 dozen)

  • 2-21/2 cups flour
  • 2 TBS sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 pkg. yeast
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 TBS. butter
Mix 3/4 cup flour, sugar, salt, and yeast in large mixing bowl.
Heat milk, water, and butter until butter has just melted. I used my microwave for 1 minute, but times may vary.
Gradually add milk mixture to dry ingredients and beat 2 minutes at medium speed.
Add 1/4 cup flour. Beat at high speed preferably with hook attachment for 2 minutes. Stir in enough additional flour to make a soft dough.
Turn dough onto floured board and knead dough for 2 to 3 minutes.
Divide dough into 12 equal pieces. Shape into balls and place in greased 9×13 pan.
Cover rolls with towel and place on middle rack of COLD oven. Pour boiling water into 9×9 pan and place on bottom rack of oven. Close door and let dough rise for 30-40 minutes.
Remove towel from roll dough and pan of water. Turn oven to 375 degrees and bake 25 minutes.
Remove rolls from oven and brush tops with butter, if desired. Fresh baked hot rolls in 90 minutes!