Saint Matthew – Chapter 11

The Bible – New Testament Saint Matthew Chapter 11 1 When Jesus finished giving these commands to his twelve disciples, 1 he went away from that place to teach and to preach in their towns. 2 2 When John heard in prison 3 of the works of the Messiah, he sent his disciples to him 3 4 with this question, «Are… Seguir leyendo Saint Matthew – Chapter 11

The Bible – New Testament

Saint Matthew

Chapter 28


1 After the sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, 2 Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb.


3 And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, approached, rolled back the stone, and sat upon it.


His appearance was like lightning and his clothing was white as snow.


The guards were shaken with fear of him and became like dead men.


Then the angel said to the women in reply, «Do not be afraid! I know that you are seeking Jesus the crucified.


4 He is not here, for he has been raised just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.


Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has been raised from the dead, and he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him.’ Behold, I have told you.»


Then they went away quickly from the tomb, fearful yet overjoyed, and ran to announce 5 this to his disciples.


6 And behold, Jesus met them on their way and greeted them. They approached, embraced his feet, and did him homage.


Then Jesus said to them, «Do not be afraid. Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.»


7 While they were going, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests all that had happened.


They assembled with the elders and took counsel; then they gave a large sum of money to the soldiers,


telling them, «You are to say, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him while we were asleep.’


And if this gets to the ears of the governor, we will satisfy (him) and keep you out of trouble.»


The soldiers took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story has circulated among the Jews to the present (day).


8 The eleven 9 disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had ordered them.


10 When they saw him, they worshiped, but they doubted.


11 Then Jesus approached and said to them, «All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me.


Go, therefore, 12 and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit,


teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. 13 And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.»

1 [1-20] Except for ⇒ Matthew 28:1-8 based on ⇒ Mark 16:1-8, the material of this final chapter is peculiar to Matthew. Even where he follows Mark, Matthew has altered his source so greatly that a very different impression is given from that of the Marcan account. The two points that are common to the resurrection testimony of all the gospels are that the tomb of Jesus had been found empty and that the risen Jesus had appeared to certain persons, or, in the original form of Mark, that such an appearance was promised as soon to take place (see ⇒ Mark 16:7). On this central and all-important basis, Matthew has constructed an account that interprets the resurrection as the turning of the ages (⇒ Matthew 28:2-4), shows the Jewish opposition to Jesus as continuing to the present in the claim that the resurrection is a deception perpetrated by the disciples who stole his body from the tomb (⇒ Matthew 28:11-15), and marks a new stage in the mission of the disciples once limited to Israel (⇒ Matthew 10:5-6); now they are to make disciples of all nations. In this work they will be strengthened by the presence of the exalted Son of Man, who will be with them until the kingdom comes in fullness at the end of the age (⇒ Matthew 28:16-20).
2 [1] After the sabbath . . . dawning: since the sabbath ended at sunset, this could mean in the early evening, for dawning can refer to the appearance of the evening star; cf ⇒ Luke 23:54. However, it is probable that Matthew means the morning dawn of the day after the sabbath, as in the similar though slightly different text of Mark, «when the sun had risen» (⇒ Mark 16:2). Mary Magdalene and the other Mary: see the notes on ⇒ Matthew 27:55-56; 57-61. To see the tomb: cf ⇒ Mark 16:1-2 where the purpose of the women’s visit is to anoint Jesus’ body.
3 [2-4] Peculiar to Matthew. A great earthquake: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 27:51-53. Descended from heaven: this trait is peculiar to Matthew, although his interpretation of the «young man» of his Marcan source (⇒ Mark 16:5) as an angel is probably true to Mark’s intention; cf ⇒ Luke 24:23 where the «two men» of ⇒ Matthew 24:4 are said to be «angels.» Rolled back the stone . . . upon it: not to allow the risen Jesus to leave the tomb but to make evident that the tomb is empty (see ⇒ Matthew 24:6). Unlike the apocryphal Gospel of Peter (9, 35 – 11, 44), the New Testament does not describe the resurrection of Jesus, nor is there anyone who sees it. His appearance was like lightning . . . snow: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 17:2.
4 [6-7] Cf ⇒ Mark 16:6-7. Just as he said: a Matthean addition referring to Jesus’ predictions of his resurrection, e.g., ⇒ Matthew 16:21; ⇒ 17:23; ⇒ 20:19. Tell his disciples: like the angel of the Lord of the infancy narrative, the angel interprets a fact and gives a commandment about what is to be done; cf ⇒ Matthew 1:20-21. Matthew omits Mark’s «and Peter» (⇒ Mark 16:7); considering his interest in Peter, this omission is curious. Perhaps the reason is that the Marcan text may allude to a first appearance of Jesus to Peter alone (cf ⇒ 1 Cor 15:5; ⇒ Luke 24:34) which Matthew has already incorporated into his account of Peter’s confession at Caesarea Philippi; see the note on ⇒ Matthew 16:16. He is going . . . Galilee: like ⇒ Mark 16:7, a reference to Jesus’ prediction at the Last Supper (⇒ Matthew 26:32; ⇒ Mark 14:28). Matthew changes Mark’s «as he told you» to a declaration of the angel.
5 [8] Contrast ⇒ Mark 16:8 where the women in their fear «said nothing to anyone.»
6 [9-10] Although these verses are peculiar to Matthew, there are similarities between them and John’s account of the appearance of Jesus to Mary Magdalene (⇒ John 20:17). In both there is a touching of Jesus’ body, and a command of Jesus to bear a message to his disciples, designated as his brothers. Matthew may have drawn upon a tradition that appears in a different form in John. Jesus’ words to the women are mainly a repetition of those of the angel (⇒ Matthew 28:5a, ⇒ 7b).
7 [11-15] This account indicates that the dispute between Christians and Jews about the empty tomb was not whether the tomb was empty but why.
8 [16-20] This climactic scene has been called a «proleptic parousia,» for it gives a foretaste of the final glorious coming of the Son of Man (⇒ Matthew 26:64). Then his triumph will be manifest to all; now it is revealed only to the disciples, who are commissioned to announce it to all nations and bring them to belief in Jesus and obedience to his commandments.
9 [16] The eleven: the number recalls the tragic defection of Judas Iscariot. To the mountain . . . ordered them: since the message to the disciples was simply that they were to go to Galilee (⇒ Matthew 28:10), some think that the mountain comes from a tradition of the message known to Matthew and alluded to here. For the significance of the mountain, see the note on ⇒ Matthew 17:1.
10 [17] But they doubted: the Greek can also be translated, «but some doubted.» The verb occurs elsewhere in the New Testament only in ⇒ Matthew 14:31 where it is associated with Peter’s being of «little faith.» For the meaning of that designation, see the note on ⇒ Matthew 6:30.
11 [18] All power . . . me: the Greek word here translated power is the same as that found in the LXX translation of ⇒ Daniel 7:13-14 where one «like a son of man» is given power and an everlasting kingdom by God. The risen Jesus here claims universal power, i.e., in heaven and on earth.
12 [19] Therefore: since universal power belongs to the risen Jesus (⇒ Matthew 28:18), he gives the eleven a mission that is universal. They are to make disciples of all nations. While all nations is understood by some scholars as referring only to all Gentiles, it is probable that it included the Jews as well. Baptizing them: baptism is the means of entrance into the community of the risen one, the Church. In the name of the Father . . . holy Spirit: this is perhaps the clearest expression in the New Testament of trinitarian belief. It may have been the baptismal formula of Matthew’s church, but primarily it designates the effect of baptism, the union of the one baptized with the Father, Son, and holy Spirit.
13 [20] All that I have commanded you: the moral teaching found in this gospel, preeminently that of the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7). The commandments of Jesus are the standard of Christian conduct, not the Mosaic law as such, even though some of the Mosaic commandments have now been invested with the authority of Jesus. Behold, I am with you always: the promise of Jesus’ real though invisible presence echoes the name Emmanuel given to him in the infancy narrative; see the note on ⇒ Matthew 1:23. End of the age: see the notes on ⇒ Matthew 13:39 and ⇒ Matthew 24:3.

The Bible – New Testament

Saint Matthew 

Chapter 26


1 When Jesus finished all these words, 2 he said to his disciples,


«You know that in two days’ time it will be Passover, and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.»


3 Then the chief priests and the elders of the people assembled in the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas,


and they consulted together to arrest Jesus by treachery and put him to death.


But they said, «Not during the festival, 4 that there may not be a riot among the people.»


5 Now when Jesus was in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper,


a woman came up to him with an alabaster jar of costly perfumed oil, and poured it on his head while he was reclining at table.


When the disciples saw this, they were indignant and said, «Why this waste?


It could have been sold for much, and the money given to the poor.»


Since Jesus knew this, he said to them, «Why do you make trouble for the woman? She has done a good thing for me.


The poor you will always have with you; but you will not always have me.


6 In pouring this perfumed oil upon my body, she did it to prepare me for burial.


Amen, I say to you, wherever this gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be spoken of, in memory of her.»


Then one of the Twelve, who was called Judas Iscar iot, 7 went to the chief priests


8 and said, «What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?» They paid him thirty pieces of silver,


and from that time on he looked for an opportunity to hand him over.


On the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, 9 the disciples approached Jesus and said, «Where do you want us to prepare for you to eat the Passover?»


10 He said, «Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, ‘The teacher says, «My appointed time draws near; in your house I shall celebrate the Passover with my disciples.»‘»


The disciples then did as Jesus had ordered, and prepared the Passover.


When it was evening, he reclined at table with the Twelve.


And while they were eating, he said, «Amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me.» 11


Deeply distressed at this, they began to say to him one after another, «Surely it is not I, Lord?»


He said in reply, «He who has dipped his hand into the dish with me is the one who will betray me.


12 The Son of Man indeed goes, as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed. It would be better for that man if he had never been born.»


13 Then Judas, his betrayer, said in reply, «Surely it is not I, Rabbi?» He answered, «You have said so.»


14 15 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and giving it to his disciples said, «Take and eat; this is my body.»


Then he took a cup, gave thanks, 16 and gave it to them, saying, «Drink from it, all of you,


for this is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed on behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins.


17 I tell you, from now on I shall not drink this fruit of the vine until the day when I drink it with you new in the kingdom of my Father.»


18 Then, after singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.


Then Jesus said to them, «This night all of you will have your faith in me shaken, 19 for it is written: ‘I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be dispersed’;


but after I have been raised up, I shall go before you to Galilee.»


Peter said to him in reply, «Though all may have their faith in you shaken, mine will never be.»


20 Jesus said to him, «Amen, I say to you, this very night before the cock crows, you will deny me three times.»


Peter said to him, «Even though I should have to die with you, I will not deny you.» And all the disciples spoke likewise.


21 Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, 22 and he said to his disciples, «Sit here while I go over there and pray.»


He took along Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, 23 and began to feel sorrow and distress.


Then he said to them, «My soul is sorrowful even to death. 24 Remain here and keep watch with me.»


He advanced a little and fell prostrate in prayer, saying, «My Father, 25 if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet, not as I will, but as you will.»


When he returned to his disciples he found them asleep. He said to Peter, «So you could not keep watch with me for one hour?


Watch and pray that you may not undergo the test. 26 The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.»


27 Withdrawing a second time, he prayed again, «My Father, if it is not possible that this cup pass without my drinking it, your will be done!»


Then he returned once more and found them asleep, for they could not keep their eyes open.


He left them and withdrew again and prayed a third time, saying the same thing again.


Then he returned to his disciples and said to them, «Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? Behold, the hour is at hand when the Son of Man is to be handed over to sinners.


Get up, let us go. Look, my betrayer is at hand.»


While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, arrived, accompanied by a large crowd, with swords and clubs, who had come from the chief priests and the elders of the people.


His betrayer had arranged a sign with them, saying, «The man I shall kiss is the one; arrest him.»


Immediately he went over to Jesus and said, «Hail, Rabbi!» 28 and he kissed him.


Jesus answered him, «Friend, do what you have come for.» Then stepping forward they laid hands on Jesus and arrested him.


And behold, one of those who accompanied Jesus put his hand to his sword, drew it, and struck the high priest’s servant, cutting off his ear.


Then Jesus said to him, «Put your sword back into its sheath, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword.


Do you think that I cannot call upon my Father and he will not provide me at this moment with more than twelve legions of angels?


But then how would the scriptures be fulfilled which say that it must come to pass in this way?»


29 At that hour Jesus said to the crowds, «Have you come out as against a robber, with swords and clubs to seize me? Day after day I sat teaching in the temple area, yet you did not arrest me.


But all this has come to pass that the writings of the prophets may be fulfilled.» Then all the disciples left him and fled.


30 Those who had arrested Jesus led him away to Caiaphas 31 the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled.


Peter was following him at a distance as far as the high priest’s courtyard, and going inside he sat down with the servants to see the outcome.


The chief priests and the entire Sanhedrin 32 kept trying to obtain false testimony against Jesus in order to put him to death,


but they found none, though many false witnesses came forward. Finally two 33 came forward


who stated, «This man said, ‘I can destroy the temple of God and within three days rebuild it.'»


The high priest rose and addressed him, «Have you no answer? What are these men testifying against you?»


But Jesus was silent. 34 Then the high priest said to him, «I order you to tell us under oath before the living God whether you are the Messiah, the Son of God.»


Jesus said to him in reply, «You have said so. 35 But I tell you: From now on you will see ‘the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Power’ and ‘coming on the clouds of heaven.'»


Then the high priest tore his robes and said, «He has blasphemed! 36 What further need have we of witnesses? You have now heard the blasphemy;


what is your opinion?» They said in reply, «He deserves to die!»


37 Then they spat in his face and struck him, while some slapped him,


saying, «Prophesy for us, Messiah: who is it that struck you?»


Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. One of the maids came over to him and said, «You too were with Jesus the Galilean.»


38 But he denied it in front of everyone, saying, «I do not know what you are talking about!»


As he went out to the gate, another girl saw him and said to those who were there, «This man was with Jesus the Nazorean.»


Again he denied it with an oath, «I do not know the man!»


39 A little later the bystanders came over and said to Peter, «Surely you too are one of them; even your speech gives you away.»


At that he began to curse and to swear, «I do not know the man.» And immediately a cock crowed.


Then Peter remembered the word that Jesus had spoken: «Before the cock crows you will deny me three times.» He went out and began to weep bitterly.

1 [1-⇒ 28:20] The five books with alternating narrative and discourse (⇒ Matthew 3:1-⇒ 25:46) that give this gospel its distinctive structure lead up to the climactic events that are the center of Christian belief and the origin of the Christian church, the passion and resurrection of Jesus. In his passion narrative (⇒ Matthew 26:26-27) Matthew follows his Marcan source closely but with omissions (e.g., ⇒ Mark 14:51-52) and additions (e.g., ⇒ Matthew 27:3-10, ⇒ 19). Some of the additions indicate that he utilized traditions that he had received from elsewhere; others are due to his own theological insight (e.g., ⇒ Matthew 26:28 «. . . for the forgiveness of sins»; ⇒ Matthew 27:52). In his editing Matthew also altered Mark in some minor details. But there is no need to suppose that he knew any passion narrative other than Mark’s.
2 [1-2] When Jesus finished all these words: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 7:28-29. «You know . . . crucified»: Matthew turns Mark’s statement of the time (⇒ Mark 14:1) into Jesus’ final prediction of his passion. Passover: see the note on ⇒ Mark 14:1.
3 [3] Caiaphas was high priest from A.D. 18 to 36.
4 [5] Not during the festival: the plan to delay Jesus’ arrest and execution until after the festival was not carried out, for according to the synoptics he was arrested on the night of Nisan 14 and put to death the following day. No reason is given why the plan was changed.
5 [6-13] See the notes on ⇒ Mark 14:3-9 and ⇒ John 12:1-8.
6 [12] To prepare me for burial: cf ⇒ Mark 14:8. In accordance with the interpretation of this act as Jesus’ burial anointing, Matthew, more consistent than Mark, changes the purpose of the visit of the women to Jesus’ tomb; they do not go to anoint him (⇒ Mark 16:1) but «to see the tomb» (⇒ Matthew 28:1).
7 [14] Iscariot: see the note on ⇒ Luke 6:16.
8 [15] The motive of avarice is introduced by Judas’s question about the price for betrayal, which is absent in the Marcan source (⇒ Mark 14:10-11). Hand him over: the same Greek verb is used to express the saving purpose of God by which Jesus is handed over to death (cf ⇒ Matthew 17:22; ⇒ 20:18; ⇒ 26:2) and the human malice that hands him over. Thirty pieces of silver: the price of the betrayal is found only in Matthew. It is derived from ⇒ Zechariah 11:12 where it is the wages paid to the rejected shepherd, a cheap price (⇒ Zechariah 11:13). That amount is also the compensation paid to one whose slave has been gored by an ox (⇒ Exodus 21:32).
9 [17] The first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread: see the note on ⇒ Mark 14:1. Matthew omits Mark’s «when they sacrificed the Passover lamb.»
10 [18] By omitting much of ⇒ Mark 14:13-15, adding My appointed time draws near, and turning the question into a statement, in your house I shall celebrate the Passover, Matthew has given this passage a solemnity and majesty greater than that of his source.
11 [21] Given Matthew’s interest in the fulfillment of the Old Testament, it is curious that he omits the Marcan designation of Jesus’ betrayer as «one who is eating with me» (⇒ Mark 14:18), since that is probably an allusion to Ps 41, 10. However, the shocking fact that the betrayer is one who shares table fellowship with Jesus is emphasized in ⇒ Matthew 26:23.
12 [24] It would be better . . . born: the enormity of the deed is such that it would be better not to exist than to do it.
13 [25] Peculiar to Matthew. You have said so: cf ⇒ Matthew 26:64; ⇒ 27:11. This is a half-affirmative. Emphasis is laid on the pronoun and the answer implies that the statement would not have been made if the question had not been asked.
14 [26] See the note on ⇒ Mark 14:22-24. The Marcan-Matthean is one of the two major New Testament traditions of the words of Jesus when instituting the Eucharist. The other (and earlier) is the Pauline-Lucan (⇒ 1 Cor 11:23-25; ⇒ Luke 22:19-20). Each shows the influence of Christian liturgical usage, but the Marcan-Matthean is more developed in that regard than the Pauline-Lucan. The words over the bread and cup succeed each other without the intervening meal mentioned in ⇒ 1 Cor 11:25; ⇒ Luke 22:20; and there is parallelism between the consecratory words (this is my body . . . this is my blood). Matthew follows Mark closely but with some changes.
15 [26] See the note on ⇒ Matthew 14:19. Said the blessing: a prayer blessing God. Take and eat: literally, Take, eat. Eat is an addition to Mark’s «take it» (literally, «take»; ⇒ Mark 14:22). This is my body: the bread is identified with Jesus himself. ⇒ Matthew 26:26-29
16 [27-28] Gave thanks: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 15:36. Gave it to them . . . all of you: cf ⇒ Mark 14:23-24. In the Marcan sequence the disciples drink and then Jesus says the interpretative words. Matthew has changed this into a command to drink followed by those words. My blood: see ⇒ Lev 17:11 for the concept that the blood is «the seat of life» and that when placed on the altar it «makes atonement.» Which will be shed: the present participle, «being shed» or «going to be shed,» is future in relation to the Last Supper. On behalf of: Greek peri; see the note on ⇒ Mark 14:24. Many: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 20:28. For the forgiveness of sins: a Matthean addition. The same phrase occurs in ⇒ Mark 1:4 in connection with John’s baptism but Matthew avoids it there (⇒ Matthew 3:11). He places it here probably because he wishes to emphasize that it is the sacrificial death of Jesus that brings forgiveness of sins.
17 [29] Although his death will interrupt the table fellowship he has had with the disciples, Jesus confidently predicts his vindication by God and a new table fellowship with them at the banquet of the kingdom.
18 [30] See the note on ⇒ Mark 14:26.
19 [31] Will have . . . shaken: literally, «will be scandalized in me»; see the note on ⇒ Matthew 24:9-12. I will strike . . . dispersed: cf ⇒ Zechariah 13:7.
20 [34] Before the cock crows: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 14:25. The third watch of the night was called «cockcrow.» Deny me: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 16:24.
21 [36-56] Cf ⇒ Mark 14:32-52. The account of Jesus in Gethsemane is divided between that of his agony (⇒ Matthew 26:36-46) and that of his betrayal and arrest (⇒ Matthew 26:47-56). Jesus’ sorrow and distress (⇒ Matthew 26:37) in face of death is unrelieved by the presence of his three disciples who, though urged to watch with him (⇒ Matthew 26:38, ⇒ 41), fall asleep (⇒ Matthew 26:40, ⇒ 43). He prays that if . . . possible his death may be avoided (⇒ Matthew 26:39) but that his Father’s will be done (⇒ Matthew 26:39, ⇒ 42, ⇒ 44). Knowing then that his death must take place, he announces to his companions that the hour for his being handed over has come (⇒ Matthew 26:45). Judas arrives with an armed band provided by the Sanhedrin and greets Jesus with a kiss, the prearranged sign for his identification (⇒ Matthew 26:47-49). After his arrest, he rebukes a disciple who has attacked the high priest’s servant with a sword (⇒ Matthew 26:51-54), and chides those who have come out to seize him with swords and clubs as if he were a robber (⇒ Matthew 26:55-56). In both rebukes Jesus declares that the treatment he is how receiving is the fulfillment of the scriptures (⇒ Matthew 26:55, ⇒ 56). How should be now the subsequent flight of all the disciples is itself the fulfillment of his own prediction (cf 31). In this episode, Matthew follows Mark with a few alterations.
22 [36] Gethsemane: the Hebrew name means «oil press» and designates an olive orchard on the western slope of the Mount of Olives; see the note on ⇒ Matthew 21:1. The name appears only in Matthew and Mark. The place is called a «garden» in ⇒ John 18:1.
23 [37] Peter and the two sons of Zebedee: cf ⇒ Matthew 17:1.
24 [38] Cf ⇒ Psalm 42:5, ⇒ 11. In the Septuagint (⇒ Psalm 41:4, ⇒ 11) the same Greek word for sorrowful is used as here. To death: i.e., «enough to die»; cf ⇒ Jonah 4:9.
25 [39] My Father: see the note on ⇒ Mark 14:36. Matthew omits the Aramaic ‘abba’ and adds the qualifier my. This cup: see the note on ⇒ Mark 10:38-40.
26 [41] Undergo the test: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 6:13. In that verse «the final test» translates the same Greek word as is here translated the test, and these are the only instances of the use of that word in Matthew. It is possible that the passion of Jesus is seen here as an anticipation of the great tribulation that will precede the parousia (see the notes on ⇒ Matthew 24:8; ⇒ 24:21) to which ⇒ Matthew 6:13 refers, and that just as Jesus prays to be delivered from death (⇒ Matthew 26:39), so he exhorts the disciples to pray that they will not have to undergo the great test that his passion would be for them. Some scholars, however, understand not undergo (literally, «not enter») the test as meaning not that the disciples may be spared the test but that they may not yield to the temptation of falling away from Jesus because of his passion even though they will have to endure it.
27 [42] Your will be done: cf ⇒ Matthew 6:10.
28 [49] Rabbi: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 23:6-7. Jesus is so addressed twice in Matthew (⇒ Matthew 26:25), both times by Judas. For the significance of the closely related address «teacher» in Matthew, see the note on ⇒ Matthew 8:19.
29 [55] Day after day . . . arrest me: cf ⇒ Mark 14:49. This suggests that Jesus had taught for a relatively long period in Jerusalem, whereas ⇒ Matthew 21:1-11 puts his coming to the city for the first time only a few days before.
30 [57-68] Following ⇒ Mark 14:53-65 Matthew presents the nighttime appearance of Jesus before the Sanhedrin as a real trial. After many false witnesses bring charges against him that do not suffice for the death sentence (Matthew 14:60), two came forward who charge him with claiming to be able to destroy the temple . . . and within three days to rebuild it (Matthew 14:60-61). Jesus makes no answer even when challenged to do so by the high priest, who then orders him to declare under oath . . . whether he is the Messiah, the Son of God (⇒ Matthew 26:62-63). Matthew changes Mark’s clear affirmative response (⇒ Mark 14:62) to the same one as that given to Judas (⇒ Matthew 26:25), but follows Mark almost verbatim in Jesus’ predicting that his judges will see him (the Son of Man) seated at the right hand of God and coming on the clouds of heaven (⇒ Matthew 26:64). The high priest then charges him with blasphemy (⇒ Matthew 26:65), a charge with which the other members of the Sanhedrin agree by declaring that he deserves to die (⇒ Matthew 26:66). They then attack him (⇒ Matthew 26:67) and mockingly demand that he prophesy (⇒ Matthew 26:68). This account contains elements that are contrary to the judicial procedures prescribed in the Mishnah, the Jewish code of law that dates in written form from ca. A.D. 200, e.g., trial on a feast day, a night session of the court, pronouncement of a verdict of condemnation at the same session at which testimony was received. Consequently, some scholars regard the account entirely as a creation of the early Christians without historical value. However, it is disputable whether the norms found in the Mishnah were in force at the time of Jesus. More to the point is the question whether the Matthean-Marcan night trial derives from a combination of two separate incidents, a nighttime preliminary investigation (cf ⇒ John 18:13, ⇒ 19-24) and a formal trial on the following morning (cf ⇒ Luke 22:66-71).
31 [57] Caiaphas: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 26:3.
32 [59] Sanhedrin: see the note on ⇒ Luke 22:66.
33 [60-61] Two: cf ⇒ Deut 19:15. I can destroy . . . rebuild it: there are significant differences from the Marcan parallel (⇒ Mark 14:58). Matthew omits «made with hands» and «not made with hands» and changes Mark’s «will destroy» and «will build another» to can destroy and (can) rebuild. The charge is probably based on Jesus’ prediction of the temple’s destruction; see the notes on ⇒ Matthew 23:37-39; ⇒ 24:2; and ⇒ John 2:19. A similar prediction by Jeremiah was considered as deserving death; cf ⇒ Jeremiah 7:1-15; ⇒ 26:1-8.
34 [63] Silent: possibly an allusion to ⇒ Isaiah 53:7. I order you . . . living God: peculiar to Matthew; cf ⇒ Mark 14:61.
35 [64] + You have said so: see the note on ⇒ Matthew 26:25. From now on . . . heaven: the Son of Man who is to be crucified (cf ⇒ Matthew 20:19) will be seen in glorious majesty (cf ⇒ Psalm 110:1) and coming on the clouds of heaven (cf ⇒ Daniel 7:13). The Power: see the note on ⇒ Mark 14:61-62.
36 [65] Blasphemed: the punishment for blasphemy was death by stoning (see ⇒ Lev 24:10-16). According to the Mishnah, to be guilty of blasphemy one had to pronounce «the Name itself,» i.e. Yahweh; cf Sanhedrin 7, 4.5. Those who judge the gospel accounts of Jesus’ trial by the later Mishnah standards point out that Jesus uses the surrogate «the Power,» and hence no Jewish court would have regarded him as guilty of blasphemy; others hold that the Mishnah’s narrow understanding of blasphemy was a later development.
37 [67-68] The physical abuse, apparently done to Jesus by the members of the Sanhedrin themselves, recalls the sufferings of the Isaian Servant of the Lord; cf ⇒ Isaiah 50:6. The mocking challenge to prophesy is probably motivated by Jesus’ prediction of his future glory (⇒ Matthew 26:64).
38 [70] Denied it in front of everyone: see ⇒ Matthew 10:33. Peter’s repentance (⇒ Matthew 26:75) saves him from the fearful destiny of which Jesus speaks there.
39 [73] Your speech . . . away: Matthew explicates Mark’s «you too are a Galilean» (⇒ Mark 14:70).

The Bible – New Testament

Saint Matthew

Chapter 2


1 When Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, in the days of King Herod, 2 behold, magi from the east arrived in Jerusalem,


saying, «Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star 3 at its rising and have come to do him homage.»


When King Herod heard this, he was greatly troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.


Assembling all the chief priests and the scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. 4


They said to him, «In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it has been written through the prophet:


‘And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; since from you shall come a ruler, who is to shepherd my people Israel.'»


Then Herod called the magi secretly and ascertained from them the time of the star’s appearance.


He sent them to Bethlehem and said, «Go and search diligently for the child. When you have found him, bring me word, that I too may go and do him homage.»


After their audience with the king they set out. And behold, the star that they had seen at its rising preceded them, until it came and stopped over the place where the child was.


They were overjoyed at seeing the star,


5 and on entering the house they saw the child with Mary his mother. They prostrated themselves and did him homage. Then they opened their treasures and offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.


And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed for their country by another way.


6 When they had departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, «Rise, take the child and his mother, flee to Egypt, 7 and stay there until I tell you. Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him.»


Joseph rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed for Egypt.


8 He stayed there until the death of Herod, that what the Lord had said through the prophet might be fulfilled, «Out of Egypt I called my son.»


When Herod realized that he had been deceived by the magi, he became furious. He ordered the massacre of all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had ascertained from the magi.


Then was fulfilled what had been said through Jeremiah the prophet:


9 «A voice was heard in Ramah, sobbing and loud lamentation; Rachel weeping for her children, and she would not be consoled, since they were no more.»


When Herod had died, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt


and said, «Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child’s life are dead.» 10


He rose, took the child and his mother, and went to the land of Israel.


But when he heard that Archelaus was ruling over Judea in place of his father Herod, 11 he was afraid to go back there. And because he had been warned in a dream, he departed for the region of Galilee.


12 He went and dwelt in a town called Nazareth, so that what had been spoken through the prophets might be fulfilled, «He shall be called a Nazorean.»

1 [1-12] The future rejection of Jesus by Israel and his acceptance by the Gentiles are retrojected into this scene of the narrative.
2 [1] In the days of King Herod: Herod reigned from 37 to 4 B.C. Magi: originally a designation of the Persian priestly caste, the word became used of those who were regarded as having more than human knowledge. Matthew’s magi are astrologers.
3 [2] We saw his star: it was a common ancient belief that a new star appeared at the time of a ruler’s birth. Matthew also draws upon the Old Testament story of Balaam, who had prophesied that «A star shall advance from Jacob» (⇒ Numbers 24:17), though there the star means not an astral phenomenon but the king himself.
4 [4] Herod’s consultation with the chief priests and scribes has some similarity to a Jewish legend about the child Moses in which the «sacred scribes» warn Pharaoh about the imminent birth of one who will deliver Israel from Egypt and the king makes plans to destroy him. ⇒ Matthew 2:11: Cf ⇒ Psalm 72:10, ⇒ 15; ⇒ Isaiah 60:6. These Old Testament texts led to the interpretation of the magi as kings.
5 [11] ⇒ Psalm 72:10; ⇒ Psalm 72:15; ⇒ Isaiah 60:6; These Old Testament texts led to the interpretation of the magi as Kings.
6 [13-23] Biblical and nonbiblical traditions about Moses are here applied to the child Jesus, though the dominant Old Testament type is not Moses but Israel (⇒ Matthew 2:15).
7 [13] Flee to Egypt: Egypt was a traditional place of refuge for those fleeing from danger in Palestine (see ⇒ 1 Kings 11:40; ⇒ Jeremiah 26:21), but the main reason why the child is to be taken to Egypt is that he may relive the Exodus experience of Israel.
8 [15] The fulfillment citation is taken from ⇒ Hosea 11:1. Israel, God’s son, was called out of Egypt at the time of the Exodus; Jesus, the Son of God, will similarly be called out of that land in a new exodus. The father-son relationship between God and the nation is set in a higher key. Here the son is not a group adopted as «son of God,» but the child who, as conceived by the holy Spirit, stands in unique relation to God. He is son of David and of Abraham, of Mary and of Joseph, but, above all, of God.
9 [18] ⇒ Jeremiah 31:15 portrays Rachel, wife of the patriarch Jacob, weeping for her children taken into exile at the time of the Assyrian invasion of the northern kingdom (722-21 B.C.). Bethlehem was traditionally identified with Ephrath, the place near which Rachel was buried (see ⇒ Genesis 35:19; ⇒ 48:7), and the mourning of Rachel is here applied to her lost children of a later age. Ramah: about six miles north of Jerusalem. The lamentation of Rachel is so great as to be heard at a far distance.
10 [20] For those who sought the child’s life are dead: Moses, who had fled from Egypt because the Pharaoh sought to kill him (see ⇒ Exodus 2:15), was told to return there, «for all the men who sought your life are dead» (⇒ Exodus 4:19).
11 [22] With the agreement of the emperor Augustus, Archelaus received half of his father’s kingdom, including Judea, after Herod’s death. He had the title «ethnarch» (i.e., «ruler of a nation») and reigned from 4 B.C. to A.D. 6.
12 [23] Nazareth . . . he shall be called a Nazorean: the tradition of Jesus’ residence in Nazareth was firmly established, and Matthew sees it as being in accordance with the foreannounced plan of God. The town of Nazareth is not mentioned in the Old Testament, and no such prophecy can be found there. The vague expression «through the prophets» may be due to Matthew’s seeing a connection between Nazareth and certain texts in which there are words with a remote similarity to the name of that town. Some such Old Testament texts are ⇒ Isaiah 11:1 where the Davidic king of the future is called «a bud» (neser) that shall blossom from the roots of Jesse, and ⇒ Judges 13:5, 7 where Samson, the future deliverer of Israel from the Philistines, is called one who shall be consecrated (a nazir) to God. 

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