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ISBN-13: 9781433646775
Publisher: B&H Publishing Group
Publication date: 08/01/2017
Series: Exegetical Guide to the Greek New Testament
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 432
File size: 7 MB

About the Author

Charles L. Quarles (Ph.D., Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary) is professor of New Testament and Biblical Theology at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is coauthor of The Cradle, the Cross, and the Crown: An Introduction to the New Testament (with Andreas Köstenberger and Scott Kellum) and The Sermon on the Mount: Restoring Christ's Message to the Modern Church.

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CHAPTER 1

I. Introduction (1:1–4:16)

A. GENEALOGY, BIRTH, AND CHILDHOOD OF JESUS

(1:1–2:23)

1. Title (1:1)

1:1 The first verse of the Gospel (sometimes termed incipit, Latin for "it begins") serves as a title. Although most EVV regard the first phrase as the title of the genealogy of Jesus, scholars debate whether the verse serves as the title for merely the genealogy (H 1.5); the entire account of Jesus's birth (Carson 86–87); a larger section of the Gospel, such as 1:1–4:16 (Kingsbury 9); or the entire Gospel (Jerome; D&A 1.149–56). The three descriptors of Jesus show that Jesus's identity is the primary focus of the title.

[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (or [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]) normally referred to an entire papyrus roll or a "book" in contrast to a brief document (LSJ 333a). The noun could refer to the major divisions of a work, such as the nine books of Herodotus. Greek writers used a distinct term, [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], to refer to a brief "paper" or "document" (though this noun was also occasionally used to refer to an entire book; 1 Macc 1:56; 12:9). Matthew used [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] to refer to a "certificate of divorce" in 19:7. Elsewhere in the NT, the term [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] refers to Old Testament books, including the book (sg.) of Moses (Mark 12:26; referring to the Pentateuch), the book of Isaiah (Luke 3:4), the book of Psalms (Luke 20:42; Acts 1:20), and the book (sg.) of the Prophets (Acts 7:42; referring to the Book of the Twelve Prophets). The term also referred to books about magic (Acts 19:19) and the "book of life" (Phil 4:3; Rev3:5; 20:15). Although [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] sometimes also refers to lengthy literary works (BDAG 176b), the term [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] never refers to brief documents in the NT and refers to brief documents only rarely in the LXX (Gen 2:4; 5:1). Nolland (71 n. 4) claimed that the term frequently referred to less substantial pieces of writing in the LXX, but the examples he offered are actually uses of the form [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] and thus do not prove his point. This poses problems for the popular view that 1:1 serves merely as a title for the genealogy, birth narrative, or first major section of the Gospel. Normal word usage suggests that 1:1 serves as the orig. title for the entire Gospel (Jerome; D&A 1.149–56).

The noun [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], "origin," may refer to the birth of a human being (Matt 1:18). On this basis many commentators conclude that the phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] refers to Jesus's genealogy or the account of his birth (e.g., Carson 86–87; H 1.5). However, the phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] appears twice in the LXX (Gen 2:4; 5:1). In both instances, the phrase introduces an account of creation, first the creation of the heavens and earth and then the creation of humanity. If Matthew's use of this phrase is influenced by the LXX, the phrase may refer to a creation account here as well. Furthermore, the word [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] was used by Matthew's contemporaries as a title for the first book of the Bible in Greek, "Genesis" (Philo Post. 127; Abr. 1; Aet. 19). This title also appears in the oldest extant mss. of the Greek Bible. Thus the phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] would prob. cause Matthew's readers to recall the book of Genesis and to recognize that Matthew's Gospel bore a title sim. to that of the first book of the Greek Bible (F 26; Evans 32).

If Matthew had merely intended 1:1 to serve as a title of the genealogy alone, he would likely have followed the LXX by introducing the genealogy with the phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (Gen 6:9; 10:1; 11:10, 27; 25:12, 19; 36:1, 9;37:2; Exod 6:14; Num 3:1; Ruth 4:18; 1 Chr 1:29; 4:2). Thus either Matthew introduced his genealogy of Jesus in a unique way, or he purposefully gave his Gospel a title identical to that of the first book of the Bible, a book best known for its account of God's acts of creation.

An important feature of the structure of the Gospel may confirm the latter interpretation. It may be no accident that the Gospel begins with the noun [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] and ends with the phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] ("end of the age"). These references stretch from the orig. of the world (by allusion to the Genesis creation account) to the consummation of the age and frame the entirety of the Gospel.

Matthew will explain the etym. significance of the name [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] in 1:21. One's view of the use of the gen. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is dependent on the interpretation of the phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]. If the phrase merely introduces the genealogy or birth narrative of Jesus, the gen. is subj. and refers to Jesus's coming into being. If the phrase recalls the OT creation accounts, the gen. is likely a gen. of producer or source (W 104–6, though some also label this as a subj. gen.; D&A 1.156) and identifies Jesus as the author of a new creation, a new genesis. For an explicit ref. to the new creation brought about by the Messiah, see Matthew 19:28. For a discussion of the new creation theme in Matthew, see Quarles, Theology, 177–89. Some scholars (H 1.9; N 71) affirm that Matthew intended his readers to think of the Genesis creation accounts when they read the phrase "book of origin" but argue that he did not go so far as to present Jesus as the author of a new creation. Instead, Matthew alluded to Genesis to show his readers that he was recording events that were just as important as the creation of the world.

The title [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (from the vb. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], "anoint") means "anointed one" and is thus the equivalent to the Heb. "Messiah." The term referred to the long-awaited deliverer of God's people whose coming the prophets had foretold. The gen. is appos. and thus serves to identify Jesus.

The gen. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] "son" is appos. Like many Heb. names transliterated into Gk., [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is indecl. (BDF §53). Here it serves as a gen. of relationship (W 83–84). The phrase "son of David" is usually a messianic title in Matthew (9:27; 12:23; 15:22; 20:30, 31; 21:9, 15; cf., 22:42). The phrase identifies Jesus as the one through whom God's covenant with David (2 Sam 7:16) will be fulfilled, the promised king.

The gen. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (second occurrence) is appos. Like [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is indecl. and serves as a gen. of relationship. The description identifies Jesus as a descendant of Abraham and thus the one through whom God's covenant with Abraham will be fulfilled (Gen 12:1–4).

HOMILETICAL SUGGESTIONS

The Gospel at a Glance (1:1)

1. Jesus is the author of a new creation

2. Jesus is the fulfillment of God's covenant with David

3. Jesus is the fulfillment of God's covenant with Abraham

2.Genealogy (1:2–17)

These vv. record the genealogy of Jesus and follow a simple structure: (anar.) father + [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] + (art.) son. Several additional phrases disrupt this normal structure. These disruptions are likely of special importance to Matthew for various reasons. The first disruption shows that Jacob fathered Judah [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]. This addition is likely designed to remind readers that the son of Abraham fathered the twelve patriarchs, who fathered the twelve tribes. The allusion reminds readers that Jesus as the "son of Abraham" (1:1) founded a new Israel (10:1–4; 19:28). See Quarles, Theology, 97–130. The additional phrase in 1:3 [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] reminds readers of the providence of God in determining which of Judah's twin sons would be the firstborn (Gen 38:27–30).

The ordinary structure is also disrupted by the addition of the title [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] to describe David in v. 6. Although several other kings are named in the genealogy, only David is granted this title. This suggests that Jesus's identity as the "son of David" emphasizes his rightful kingship.

The additional phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] in 1:11 puzzles commentators. The Old Testament only mentions one brother of Jechoniah, but Matthew refers to brothers (pl.). Gundry suggested that the "brothers" referred to Jechoniah's "fellow Jews" (G 17). Although such an interpretation is possible lexically, the grammar of the text precludes it. The nount [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is a dir. obj. of the vb. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] and indicates that Josiah fathered these brothers. Thus Matthew refers to Jeconiah and all other legitimate heirs to the throne. The prep. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] with the gen. obj. is temp. and indicates that Josiah fathered his sons about the time of the Babylonian captivity. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], "deportation," removing someone from his home and native land to a foreign country (BDAG 643a). Although the head noun [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is a verbal noun, the gen. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] does not fit in subj. or obj. categories since Babylon is the place to which Israel was deported, not the conquering people responsible for the deportation or the conquered people who suffered the deportation. Thus the gen. may be categorized as a gen. of direction (BDF §166). However, the noun [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] may be an instance of metonymy in which a place name refers to the people that inhabit the place (e.g., 2:3; 8:34), "the Babylonians." If so, this is an example of the subj. gen.

In four instances the structure is slightly disrupted by an identification of the mother that uses [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] + (art.), "mother," at the end of the clause. The absence of mention of mothers in the description of the large majority of the generations suggests that the mothers are of particular importance in these four cases. Although several theories attempting to explain these references to mothers have been posed, the most convincing explanation is that all four women (Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and Bathsheba) were regarded as Gentiles. The presence of these Gentile women in Jesus's family tree demonstrates God's intention to include Gentiles in his redemptive plan (3:9; 8:5–13; 12:15–21; 28:19&n dash;20).

Most importantly, the last clause of the genealogy (16b) radically disrupts the structure. Until the last clause, the cadence of the genealogy is so regular that it is almost hypnotic. The disruption in v. 16 would have startled readers with an awareness that Jesus's birth was different from that of any of his ancestors and, in fact, different from the conception of any other person in all history. The phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is appos. and serves to identify Joseph. Although the noun [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] often means "husband" (BDAG 79b), the context suggests that it here refers to Mary's "man" in another sense, i.e., her betrothed. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is a gen. of relationship. The prep. phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] functions like the phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] + (art.) mother which was used four times in the genealogy to identify the mothers by whom fathers conceived their children (BDAG 296c).

Although the genealogy consistently used act. forms of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], Matthew shifted to the pass. vb. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], a "divine pass." which refers to an activity of God. The grammar implies that God miraculously conceived Jesus by Mary, as the birth narrative will explicitly demonstrate. The primary purpose of the genealogy is expressed by the description of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] as [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]. The art. ptc. is subst. and in appos. to the name Jesus. Although the ptc. could be another example of the divine pass., this phrase was commonly used to explain how one was generally recognized by others (BDAG 590b; BDF §412). In such situations the ptc. and the noun expressing the name or title appear in the same case as the noun being described (e.g., 4:18; 9:9; 10:2), hence [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII].

The textual var. in the genealogy are not exegetically significant. Some mss. have [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] rather than [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (1:7–8) and [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] rather than [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (1:10), but these appear to simply be different transliterations of the same Heb. names. Gundry argued that Matthew's spellings are intended to introduce secondary allusions to the Asaph of the Psalms and Amos the prophet, but this cannot be confirmed since var. spellings are also found in mss. of the LXX and Josephus introduces still other var. spellings with even less likeness to the orig. Heb. On the var. spellings in 1:7–8 and 10, see Metzger, 1–2. On the more important var. in 1:11, 16, see Metzger, 2–6.

The primary sources for the genealogy are likely LXX 1 Chr 1:28, 34; 2:1–15; and Ruth 4:18–22.

1:17 The particle [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] shows that the verse draws an inference from the preceding genealogy. The adj. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] does not necessarily indicate that Matthew has provided an exhaustive list of the generations from Abraham to David. In this context it merely refers to the sum of those in Matthew's list. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] ... [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] requires no explicit vb. The vb. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is implied. The prep. phrases [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] + gen. and [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] + gen. establish the beginning point and ending point of a time period (BDAG 105d; 423b). On the phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], see 1:11.

HOMILETICAL SUGGESTIONS

From Genealogy to Theology: Lessons from Jesus's Family Tree (1:2–17)

1. Jesus is the Davidic Messiah

2. Jesus is the Savior of the Gentiles

3. Jesus is the virgin-born Son of God

3.Jesus's Birth (1:18–25)

1:18 The noun [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] here means "origin, birth" (BDAG 192d) and is roughly equivalent to [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], a factor which prompted a number of scribes to replace the former word with the latter in their mss. The gen. phraset [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is an obj. gen., Jesus is the one given birth. Gen. phrases normally follow the noun they modify. The placement of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] before [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] likely emphasizes the phrase "of Jesus Christ" and highlights the uniqueness of Jesus's birth (H 1.17). Jesus's conception and birth are unlike that of any of his ancestors mentioned in the preceding genealogy. The vb. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is 3rd sg. impf. indic. of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]. The adverb [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is common in Matthew and means "as follows." BDAG 741d–42d, 2 suggests it is the equivalent of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] here.

[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] gen. sg. fem. of aor. pass. ptc. of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], "become engaged for marriage." The phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is gen. abs., a cstr. common in Matthew. BDF §423 refers to this example as the "harshest and at the same time the rarest" exception to the principle in classical Greek that the antecedent of a gen. abs. does not appear as the subj. of the main clause. They note that the harshness is mitigated by the inf. clause that precedes the main vb. and admit that the phenomenon is paralleled in classical authors. Like most gen. abs., the ptc. is temp. (W 655). With an aor. vb., the aor. ptc. may describe antecedent or contemp. action (W 624–25). In this case the ptc. is contemp. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is dat. of indir. obj. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] "before" was used in Ionic Greek instead of the Attic [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] to mark temp. precedence, and this practice was adopted in Koine (BDAG 863b; 433c). [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] 2nd aor. act. inf. of dep. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], "come together," refers to uniting in a sexual relationship or to the formal marriage which was followed by cohabitation and sexual relationships. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] 3rd sg. aor. pass. indic. of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], "find." The phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (dat. sing. fem. of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], "stomach, womb") with various vbs., incl. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], was used by ancient medical writers and in the LXX (18x, e.g., Exod 21:22) to describe pregnancy. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] nom. sing. fem. of pres. act. ptc. of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], is prob. concessive. The phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] refers to the Holy Spirit. The absence of the def. art. after preps. is common (BDF §255 [3]; R 791–92). The phrase [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] is causal and indicates that the Spirit accomplished Mary's pregnancy. However, the discovery of the pregnancy was not accompanied by knowledge of the cause of the pregnancy. Thus, the clause likely means "(Mary) was discovered (to be pregnant), although her pregnancy was produced by the Holy Spirit." This analysis is preferable to the claim that the prep. phrase is "a rather cryptic remark, not well integrated in the syntax of the sentence" (N 93). D&A suggest another alternative: the vb. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] means "it turned out to be" rather than "she was discovered" (D&A 1.200) and cite Acts 5:39; Romans 7:10; and Philippians 2:8 as examples. On the textual var., see Metzger 6–7.

1:19 The particle [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] serves simply to connect lines of narrative. Although [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] followed by the gen. of rel. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] could refer to Joseph as Mary's "husband," after the discussion of betrothal in the previous verse, the noun merely means "fiancée," a usage that appears in the LXX (Deut 22:23). The antecedent of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], the gen. sg. fem. 3rd per. pron. from [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], is [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] uses the nom. sg. masc. of the pres. ptc. of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] with the adj. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], "righteous" (BDAG 246b–47b) and describes one who "conforms to the laws of God and people." The ptc. clause may be adj. and offer a description of Joseph's character or may be adv. If adv., the clause may be *causal, explaining Joseph's motivation for breaking the engagement, or concessive, showing that despite Joseph's fidelity to the law he showed mercy on an allegedly immoral woman. Like [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (nom. sg. masc. of pres. act. ptc. of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]) used anar. is likely adv. (here likely causal). [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] aor. act. inf. of [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], "to publicly disgrace." The use of the conj. [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] here is debated and one's view significantly affects the meaning of the passage.

(Continues…)



Excerpted from "Exegetical Guide to the Greek New Testament: Matthew"
by .
Copyright © 2017 Charles Quarles.
Excerpted by permission of B&H Academic.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Table of Contents

Preface,
Publisher's Preface,
General Introduction to the EGGNT Series,
Abbreviations,
MATTHEW,
I. Introduction (1:1–4:16),
II. Galilean Ministry (4:17–16:20),
III. Journey to Jerusalem (16:21–20:34),
IV. Jerusalem Ministry (21:1–28:20),
Exegetical Outline,
Grammar Index,
Scripture Index,

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