Friday, April 15, 2016

Matthew's sources

Reader David asks:

"Traditionally, what is Matthew's source of information for the first few chapters of his gospel? There's a bunch of content where he plainly wasn't an eyewitness; do we know who his informants were?"

I haven't really looked up what others say, but since I believe Matthew was written by the disciple named Matthew/Levi who actually walked with Jesus for 3.5 years, it just seems natural he asked Jesus himself around the campfire at night at some point. It appears there were women who traveled with the group helping in the ministry, and Mary was likely one of those at least occasionally. So she might have told the story of the Wise Men's visit herself. 

"As a tax collector, Matthew possessed a skill that makes his writing all the more exciting for Christians. Tax collectors were expected to be able to write in a form of shorthand, which essentially meant that Matthew could record a person’s words as they spoke, word for word. This ability means that the words of Matthew are not only inspired by the Holy Spirit, but should represent an actual transcript of some of Christ’s sermons. For example, the Sermon on the Mount, as recorded in chapters 5-7, is almost certainly a perfect recording of that great message." Source

Christianity also teaches that Mary was active in the church until her death (AD 41 ish? The only date I could find), so I would think it possible that Matthew could have asked her later, maybe as he was preparing to write his gospel.

By the way, there is a difference between what Catholics believe and other Christians. The catholic religion has added in a lot of stories over the centuries that have no basis in historical fact. These might be fun to read, but they are not truth. In fact I usually find them more on the order of fairy tales than Bible.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you so much for commenting! I love to talk to my readers.

I do ask that there be no anonymous commenters, though. If I am brave enough to put my name on this blog, you should be too:-)

Please keep it civil. Remember we are all human and make mistakes, and that since we can't see each other's faces or hear each other's tone of voice, it is very hard to get the emotion in what we are saying each other. Use lots of emoticons! :-) And show grace and love to each other.