Real Bible Studies: Matthew 18, Mark 9

The Greatest In both Gospels, the Disciples ask Yeshua who’ll be greatest. As is usual, Matthew puts a slightly different spin on it than Mark. In Mark, the question is posed in such a way to imply the Disciples are asking which is the greatest among them, but Matthew frames it as the greatest in … Continue reading Real Bible Studies: Matthew 18, Mark 9

Real Bible Studies: Mark 2-5

Many episodes in Mark are repeated in Matthew, who almost always puts his own spin on them. Frequently, Matthew summarizes passages Mark embellishes and expands on topics Mark summarizes. Matthew also mixes and matches stories that are connected in Mark, possibly to obscure when the events are occurring.  In addition to not offering a nativity … Continue reading Real Bible Studies: Mark 2-5

Real Bible Studies: Matthew and Mark, Transfiguration

Matthew 17, Mark 9 One improvement Matthew makes over Mark is in how Matthew edits the episodes in his Gospel versus how Mark does. For instance, Mark 9 begins with what appears to be the wrap up of the previous episode where Yeshua predicts what’s going to happen in Jerusalem. And he said to them, … Continue reading Real Bible Studies: Matthew and Mark, Transfiguration

Real Bible Studies, Matthew and Mark

Tradition of the Elders Chapters 15-16 of Matthew are an almost word for word insertion from Mark 7-8 though Matthew makes several changes to the source material. Both cite passages from various scriptures in condemning the Pharisees and Scribes for dishonoring their elders (Exodus 20:12, Deuteronomy 5:16, Exodus 21:17, Leviticus 20:9). Given that Yeshua himself … Continue reading Real Bible Studies, Matthew and Mark

Real Bible Studies, The Gospel of Mark

Baptism, Temptation, and Disciples Most scholars agree that Mark was the first Gospel and both Matthew and Luke made liberal usage of Mark, going so far as to lift entire passages without changing a word. Mark tells a simple, straightforward story of an itinerant preacher and miracle worker who begins as a follower of John … Continue reading Real Bible Studies, The Gospel of Mark

Real Bible Studies, Matthew 14, The Death of John

The entirety of Matthew 14 corresponds with Mark 6:14-56. As with other sections borrowed from Mark, Matthew makes notable changes to the story, which tailors the meaning to his audience, and these changes hint at the message Matthew wishes to convey to his readers. Mark 6 begins with the story of Yeshua’s rejection at Nazareth … Continue reading Real Bible Studies, Matthew 14, The Death of John

Real Bible Studies, Matthew 13, Parables and Prophecies

Parables Matthew relates more lessons from Yeshua, and these are delivered in the form of parables. They all relate to the central conflict of the Gospel, separating true believers from the hangers-on and wannabes. They also highlight Yeshua’s tendency to obscure his message to the crowds who follow him, relaying his true meaning only to … Continue reading Real Bible Studies, Matthew 13, Parables and Prophecies

Real Bible Studies: Matthew 12

Picking Grain on the Sabbath As the chapter opens, Yeshua is under scrutiny from the Pharisees for allowing his disciples to pluck grain on the Sabbath. Yeshua doesn’t apologize, but rather turns it back onto his opponents by reminding them of an incident involving David and stating Temple officials also violate the Sabbath. For the … Continue reading Real Bible Studies: Matthew 12

Real Bible Studies: Matthew 11

Messengers from John After giving his disciples their marching orders, Yeshua is approached by messengers from John, inquiring if he’s the leader John has been predicting. Rather that state it outright, Yeshua instructs the messengers to report what they’ve seen to John and let him decide. In much of Christian orthodoxy, John is heralded as … Continue reading Real Bible Studies: Matthew 11

Real Bible Studies: Matthew 9-10

Tax Collectors and Sinners Yeshua returns to Capernaum, where the crowd brings out a paralyzed man. Yeshua is quick to forgive his sins, which raises charges of blasphemy from the scribes. To counter this, Yeshua tells the man to rise, take up his bed and walk, which the individual does, astounding the crowd. Afterward, we’re … Continue reading Real Bible Studies: Matthew 9-10