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Matthew 23: 1-12

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Chapter Summary

This chapter deals with the first part of Matthew 23, vv. 1-12, and focuses on the significance of the audience identified in 23: 1, the combination of the scribes and Pharisees in 23: 2, and the intention of the command in vv. 2-3 in light of its immediate context. The closing verses, 8-12, are judged to be a key to the Matthean purpose and not a momentary diversion; and they are interpreted with this in mind. Matthew 23: 2-7 has posed a knotty problem for interpretation, particularly as it relates to Matthew's intention. The chapter focuses mostly on the significance of vv.2-4 while assuming that the concluding verses, 8-12, are perhaps the most important for unpacking the editor's intention in vv. 2-12. Their christological and ecclesiological overtones are dealt with as they reveal Matthew's chief concerns.

Keywords: Christological overtones; ecclesiological overtones; Matthew 23: 1-12

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