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Was Matthew a Jew?


I’m currently reading your book “Forged”…not sure whether I read this there or in the blog, but it puzzled me. You said the authors of Mark and Luke were not Jews? I’d somehow assumed the authors of all the Canonical Gospels were Jews – among the educated elite, of course, since they could write in Greek….  I’m sure the author of Matthew was a Jew, though very dissatisfied with some of his fellow Jews!



This comment is part of a larger question the reader had about Mark and Luke specifically – were they Jews? (I haven’t included the entire question here)  I have dealt with Mark already on the blog recently, arguing that he probably was not a Jew.  I’ll deal with Luke in a later post.   Here let me say something very briefly about Matthew.   I too tend to think that he was probably a Jew by birth and upbringing, who had converted to be a follower of Jesus.  But not everyone agrees.

One of the premier scholars of the NT and the historical Jesus is John Meier.   Before he began his massive four-volume (and counting!) study of the historical Jesus, called A Marginal Jew, he was principally known as an expert on the Gospel of Matthew.  Meier’s view was / is that Matthew was not a Jew.  And one of his pieces of evidence is very interesting.   In Matthew 21….


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Outta Here
Was Matthew a Jew? (For Members)


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