In the translator's introduction to this volume, James Kellerman relates the following story:
As Thomas Aquinas was approaching Paris, a fellow traveler pointed out the lovely buildings gracing that city. Aquinas was impressed, to be sure, but he sighed and stated that he would rather have the complete Incomplete Commentary on Matthew than to be mayor of Paris itself.
Thomas's affection for the work attests its great popularity during the Middle Ages, despite its significant missing partseverything beyond the end of Matthew 25, with further gaps of Matthew 8:1110:15 and 13:1418:35. Although there are gaps, what remains is quite lengthy, so much so that we offer the work in two volumes, comprising fifty-four homilies.
While the early-fifth-century author displays a few Arian propensities in a handful of passages, for the most part the commentary is moral in nature and therefore orthodox and generic. The unknown author, who for several centuries was thought to be John Chrysostom, follows the allegorizing method of the Alexandrians, but not by overlooking the literal meaning. His passion, above all, is to set forth the meaning of Matthew's Gospel for his readers.
Here, for the first time, this ancient work is made available in English, ably translated by James A. Kellerman and edited by Thomas C. Oden.
About the Author
James A. Kellerman has a doctorate in classical languages and literature from Loyola University. He is the pastor of First Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Chicago and also teaches part time at Concordia University Chicago. He has contributed translations to several volumes of the Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture.
Thomas C. Oden (1931–2016), was the general editor of the Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture and the Ancient Christian Doctrine series as well as the author of Classic Christianity, a revision of his three-volume systematic theology. He was the director of the Center for Early African Christianity at Eastern University in Pennsylvania and he served as the Henry Anson Buttz Professor of Theology at The Theological School of Drew University in Madison, New Jersey.
Oden was active in the Confessing Movement in America, particularly within the United Methodist Church and was president of The Institute for Classical Christian Studies. He suggested that Christians need to rely upon the wisdom of the historical Church, particularly the early Church, rather than on modern scholarship and theology and said his mission was "to begin to prepare the postmodern Christian community for its third millennium by returning again to the careful study and respectful following of the central tradition of classical Christianity."
Table of Contents
Incomplete Commentary on Matthew (Opus Impefectum)
The Twenty-Eighth Homily: On Matthew 12
The Twenty-Ninth Homily: On Matthew 12
The Thirtieth Homily: On Matthew 12 and 13
The Thirty-First Homily: On Matthew 13
The Thirty-Second Homily: On Matthew 19
The Thirty-Third Homily: On Matthew 19
The Thirty-Fourth Homily: On Matthew 20
The Thirty-Fifth Homily: On Matthew 20
The Thirty-Sixth Homily: On Matthew 20
The Thirty-Seventh Homily: On Matthew 21
The Thirty-Eighth Homily: On Matthew 21
The Thirty-Ninth Homily: On Matthew 21
The Fortieth Homily: On Matthew 21 and 22
The Forty-First Homily: On Matthew 22
The Forty-Second Homily: On Matthew 22
The Forty-Third Homily: On Matthew 23
The Forty-Fourth Homily: On Matthew 23
The Forty-Fifth Homily: On Matthew 23
The Forty-Sixth Homily: On Matthew 23
The Forty-Seventh Homily: On Matthew 24
The Forty-Eighth Homily: On Matthew 24
The Forty-Ninth Homily: On Matthew 24
The Fiffieth Homily: On Matthew 24
The Fifty-First Homily: On Matthew 24
The Fifty-Second Homily: On Matthew 25
The Fifty-Third Homily: On Matthew 25
The Fifty-Fourth Homily: On Matthew 25
Appendix: Homily on Matthew 8