In This Article Expand or collapse the "in this article" section Gospel of Matthew

  • Introduction
  • Bibliographies
  • History of Interpretation
  • Surveys
  • Collections
  • Sources (Mark, Q, and M)
  • Narrative Analysis
  • Social Science Analysis
  • Use of the Old Testament
  • Judaism
  • Roman Empire
  • Theology
  • Sermon on the Mount
  • Parables
  • Christology
  • Discipleship
  • Mission of Jesus
  • Women
  • Law
  • Eschatology

Biblical Studies Gospel of Matthew
Daniel J. Harrington
  • LAST REVIEWED: 13 September 2010
  • LAST MODIFIED: 13 September 2010
  • DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780195393361-0078


Matthew’s Gospel is generally regarded as a revised and expanded version of Mark’s Gospel. Tradition links its author to the tax collector named Matthew whom Jesus called to be an apostle (Matthew 9:9; 10:3), although the actual composition seems to have been more complex, extending over many years until about 85 or 90 CE. The Evangelist whom we call Matthew supplemented Mark’s narrative with an infancy narrative (chapters 1–2), five great speeches (chapters 5–7, 10, 13, 18, and 24–25), and several resurrection appearances (chapter 28). Matthew also sought to address the situation of his largely Jewish Christian community after the destruction of Jerusalem and its temple in 70 CE. He and his community lived in an eastern Mediterranean city where there was a large Jewish population and the main language was Greek. Antioch in Syria is the most likely candidate for this Gospel’s place of origin. The crisis facing all Jews after the year 70 concerned the continued existence and development of the Jewish heritage without the Jerusalem temple and political control of the Holy Land. Matthew’s special emphases on Jesus as the fulfillment of Israel’s hopes (as expressed in the Scriptures), as the only teacher (23:10), and as the founder of the church (16:17–19; 28:16–20) represented a Jewish Christian response to that situation.

General Overviews

A wide range of resources is available to provide an orientation to and/or a refresher for Matthew’s Gospel. These resources include the Greek text and various modern translations, annotated Study Bibles, concise dictionary treatments, and introductions to the New Testament.

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