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how would you interpret the encounter in Matthew 12:38-40 whad does it say about the attitude of the religious leaders toward miracles what great miracles what great miracle did jesus refer to in verses 39-40
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Scribes, such as the ones questioning Jesus in Matthew 12:P38-40, were educated officials in the synagogue and were very involved in determining the correct interpretation of the Scriptures and how people were required to act in order to fulfill the religious laws. The Pharisees were another group of church leaders, more involved with anticipating political resistance against the Roman occupation forces than the scribes, but equally interested in not antagonizing the Romans and increasing the oppressive conditions under which Jews were living while Jesus was alive.
Neither group believed that Jesus was anyone special or that he had any special powers. Because others were beginning to think he had special gifts, however, they were very careful to not antagonize those who followed Jesus by not openly arguing against him but instead asked him to present a demonstration of his power.
Jesus understood what they were doing and why and refused to cooperate. The miracle He refers to is the miracle of Jonah, who sacrificed his life to save the lives of others on a ship in the middle of a storm, who was swallowed by a large fish but survived for three days inside the fish, and then was safely spit out onto dry land. This can be interpreted as a foreshadowing of the crucifixion, death, and resurrection of Jesus, as well as a miraculous story regarding Jonah.
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