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New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures (Study Edition)

Introduction to Matthew

  • Writer: Matthew

  • Place Written: Israel

  • Writing Completed: c. 41 C.E.

  • Time Covered: 2 B.C.E.–33 C.E.

Noteworthy Facts:

  • Evidence indicates that Matthew originally wrote his Gospel in Hebrew just eight years after Jesus’ death; he may personally have translated it into Greek.

  • It has been estimated that Matthew’s Gospel contains about a hundred references to the Hebrew Scriptures. Some 40 of these are actual quotations.

  • Matthew’s account of Jesus’ life was likely written primarily with the Jewish audience in mind.

  • Matthew had been a tax collector, which may explain why he was explicit in his mention of money, figures, and values. (17:27; 26:15; 27:3)

  • Matthew alone mentions Jesus’ repeated insistence that mercy is required in addition to sacrifice. (9:9-13; 12:7; 18:21-35)

  • Matthew uses the term “Kingdom” more than 50 times.

  • In the first 18 chapters, Matthew highlights the Kingdom theme, leading him to depart from a chronological arrangement. However, the last ten chapters (19 to 28) generally follow a chronological sequence.

  • Over 40 percent of Matthew’s Gospel account is not found in any other Gospel. This includes at least ten illustrations: the weeds in the field (13:24-30), the hidden treasure (13:44), the pearl of high value (13:45, 46), the dragnet (13:47-50), the unmerciful slave (18:23-35), the workers and the denarius (20:1-16), the father and two children (21:28-32), the marriage of the king’s son (22:1-14), the ten virgins (25:1-13), and the talents (25:14-30).