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Bible Commentaries
Matthew 10

International Critical Commentary NTInternational Critical

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Verses 1-99

10:1. The editor continues with Mark 6:7.

(M) And having called His twelve disciples, He gave to them authority over unclean spirits, so that they should cast them out, and heal every sickness and every disease.] Mk. has: “And He calleth the Twelve, and began to send them forth two by two, and was givin them authority over the unclean spirits.”—καὶ προσκαλεσάμενος] The editor avoids as often Mk.’s historic present. See Introduction, p. xx.—τοὺς δώδεκα μαθητὰ͂ αὐτοῦ] Mk. has simply τοὺς δώδεκα. In Mt., who has previously omitted Mark 3:13-19a, and has not hitherto recorded the choice of the Twelve, the mention of the twelve disciples is abrupt and unprepared for. ἔδωκεν for Mk.’s ἐδίδου. See Introduction, p. xx. The editor omits Mk.’s “and began to send them forth two by two”; but shows a reminiscence of it by arranging the Apostles in pairs. For the last clause, cf. 4:23 and 9:35.

2. The editor thought that this would be a suitable place for the insertion of the names of the Apostles, Mark 3:16-19, which he had previously omitted.

(EM) Now of the twelve apostles the names are these: First, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; and James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother.] Mk. has: “And He appointed the Twelve. And he added to Simon a name Peter, and James the son of Zebedee, and John the brother of James; and He added to them names,1 Boanerges, that is, sons of thunder; and Andrew.”

τῶν δὲ δώδεκα�Mark 3:14.Mark 3:2—πρῶτος] The word is unexpected in a mere catalogue like the following. It can only mean that Peter was the most prominent amongst the members of the Apostolic band; cf. 16:17-19.—Σίμων ὁ λεγόμενος Πέτρος] The editor simplifies Mk.’s harsh construction. On Σίμων, see note on 4:18. Mk. places the three chief Apostles first, and thus brings together the Greek names Andrew and Philip. Mt. places the brothers in pairs.—Ἀνδρέας ὁ�Daniel 1:7 LXX. Th.

(M) 3. Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the toll-gatherer; James (the son) of Alphæus, and Thaddæus.] Mk. has: “And Philip, and Bartholomew; and Matthew and Thomas; and James (the son) of Alphæus, and Thaddæus.”

Βαρθολομαῖος] an Aramaic name; cf. Dalm. Gram. 176.—Θωμᾶς] another Aramaic name =“twin”; cf. Dalm. Gram. 145.—Μαθθαῖος] also Aramaic. Cf. Dalm. Gram. 178; Words, 51. The editor transposes Thomas and Matthew, and adds to the latter ὁ τελώνης in order to identify the Apostle with the Matthew of 9:9.—Ἀλφαῖος] Aramaic; cf. Dalm. Gram. 179.—Θαδδαῖος] according to Dalm. Gram. 179, Words, 50, is of Greek extraction = Θευδᾶς.

3. Θαδδαῖος] א B. c ff1 g2; Δεββαῖος, D k; Δεββαῖος ὁ ἐπικληθεὶς Θαδδαῖος, C2 E al. S1 has “Judas the son of James,” assimilating to Luke 6:16. In Mk. Θαδδαῖος is read by most authorities, including S1; Δεββαῖος by D a b ff2 i q. It is best to suppose that in both Gospels Θαδδαῖος is original, and that Αεββαῖος was substituted in Western texts for reasons that can only be conjectured. It is possible that someone who supposed Thaddæus to be connected with the Aramaic word for “breast” substituted Lebbæus, which he had formed from the Hebrew word for “heart,” as a more fitting name for an Apostle. The Thaddæus of Mk. and Mt. may be a corruption of Judas, which Lk. has rightly replaced. Cf. Encycl. Bib. “Thaddæus.”

(M) 4. Simon the Cananœan, and Judas Iscariot, who also delivered Him up.] Mk. has: “And Simon the Cananæan, and Judas Iscariot, who also delivered Him up.”

Καναναῖος] according to Lk. means “Zealot,” i.e. a member of the fanatical sect known to us from Josephus, Wars, iv. 160, v. 310, vii. 268; cf. Schürer, 1. ii. 80 ff. Dalman (Gram. p. 174) thinks that the Greek form should be Κανναῖος, and this has been changed into Καναναῖος by assimilation to the geographical term Canaanite.

Ἰσκαριώτης] Mk. has Ἰσκαριώθ, which Mt. has found unintelligible, and has græcised. Ἰσκαριώθ has been explained in many ways, but none of them are satisfactory. Dalman, who thinks that it is equivalent to the Hebrew איש קריות, admits that it is surprising that this phrase should have been left untranslated. Cf. Words, 51 f.

(M) 5. These twelve Jesus sent forth, having charged them, saying.] Mark 6:8 has: “And He charged them.”

The relation to Mk. of the discourse which follows may be shown as follows:

Matthew 10:5-8.

9-10a = Mark 6:8-9.


11-14. Expand 6:10-11.




omit. 6:12-13.

It is clear that Mk describes a sending out of the Twelve on a definite occasion. They go forth in pairs, Mark 6:7. Their activity brings the name of Jesus to the notice of Herod, 6:14. They return and report the result of their work, 6:30. To the editor of the first Gospel this mission of the Twelve during Christ’s lifetime seems to have had little interest. He omits the statement that they went forth, and the notice that they returned. Further, he draws together here sayings that clearly refer to the work of the Apostles in the interval between Christ’s death and His return, e.g. 17-23, 38-39. His discourse seems to have in view the circumstances of the band of disciples after His death whilst they were still in Palestine expecting their Master’s return. The startling feature in it is that Christ is represented as bidding His disciples to limit their preaching to the Jews (v. 6), and as assuring them that they will not have exhausted the cities of Israel before His return (v. 23). We may compare with this the parallel conception that Christ’s return would immediately follow the fall of Jerusalem. It might be possible to harmonise these sayings with the rest of the Gospel by interpreting “cities of Israel,” not geographically, but ethnographically = “cities where Israelites lived,” thus including the Jews of the dispersion. Along these lines v. 6 would mean “do not go out of your way to preach to non-Israelites, rather go to the dispersion of the Jews.” But it seems more probable that the two sources Mk. and the Logia, which the editor of the Gospel is combining, represented different standpoints on this question. The compiler of the Jewish Christian Logia preferred to emphasise those sayings of Christ’s teaching which seemed to limit the preaching of the kingdom to the Jewish people. The Twelve were to preach in Palestine, 10:6, 23; but the Jews in the dispersion, and proselytes from the heathen, would also furnish disciples of the kingdom, 8:11.

In Mk., on the other hand, emphasis is laid on a preaching to all nations; cf. 13:10 “The good news must first be preached to all nations,” and Matthew 28:19 “all nations,” which probably comes from Mk.’s lost ending. Mt. borrows these passages, but defines the object of the preaching of Mark 13:10 as εἰς μαρτύριον πᾶσιν τοῖς ἔθνεσιν. He seems to have found it possible to combine the ideas of a coming of Christ to usher in the end of the world immediately after the fall of Jerusalem, and of a previous preaching of the good news of the Kingdom to all nations. We may suppose that to him the phrase “all nations” was only a wide generalisation, and that he saw no difficulty in the idea that the good news could be preached “in all the world” within a single generation. The difficulty of completely harmonising 10:23 with other parts of the Gospel, arises from the fact that the editor is borrowing from sources representing different points of view, which he has not found it possible to blend so thoroughly that no trace of the original divergence remains.

(L) 5, 6. Go not away to the Gentiles, and enter not into a Samaritan city; but be going rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.]—εἰς ὁδὸν] means apparently “to,” “towards,” “in the road that leads to.” The reference is to the large Gentile population in Palestine. For the Hellenistic towns there, see Schürer, 11. i. 57 ff. For the Pharisaic view of the Samaritans as “in many respects on a level with the Gentiles, see Schürer, 11. i. 8.—τὰ πρόβατα τὰ�Jeremiah 50:6 = LXX. 27:6.

(L) 7. And as you go, preach, saying that The kingdom of the heavens is at hand.] Cf. 3:2, 4:17.

(L) 8. Heal sick people, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. Freely ye received, freely give.] For καθαρίζειν, see on 8:2.—ἀσθενοῦντας] cf. ἰατρὸν τὸν θεραπεύσοντα τοὺς�

(L) ἄξιος γὰρ ὁ ἐργάτης τῆς τροφῆς αὐτοῦ ἐστιν.] Lk., in the charge to the Seventy (10:7), has the same words with μισθοῦ for τροφῆς, and without ἐστιν; and Lk.’s form occurs in 1 Timothy 5:18, where the words seem to be quoted as Scripture.

(M) 11. And into whatsoever city or village you enter, inquire who in it is worthy, and there abide until you go out.] Mk. has: “And He said to them, Wheresoever you enter into a house, there abide until you go out thence.” Lk. in the parallel section has: “And into whatsoever house you enter, there abide and thence go out.” But in the charge to the Seventy He has separate sections dealing with the entry into a house and into a city. It would seem, therefore, that Mt.’s πόλιν ἢ κώμην is due to reminiscence of a traditional form of this saying which contained these words.—ἐξετάσατε, κ.τ.λ.] comes probably from this tradition. For ἐξετάζειν, cf. 2:3.

(L) 12, 13. And when you enter into the house, salute it. And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it; but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.] Mk. has no parallel words; but Lk., in the charge to the Seventy (10:5, 6) has: “And into whatsoever house you enter, first say, Peace to this house. And if a son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon him. But if not, it shall return to you.” The words differ from those in Mt. The two Evangelists are drawing from different sources.

(M) 14. And whosoever will not receive you, nor hear your words; as you go outside that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet.] Mk. has: “And whatsoever place will not receive you, and they will not hear you; as you proceed thence shake off the dust which is under your feet for a testimony against them.” Lk. has: “And whosoever will not receive you, as you go out from that city, shake away the dust from your feet for a testimony against them.” Both Mt. and Lk. substitute κονιορτός for Mk.’s χοῦς, and introduce the reference to the city. Lk. has the same features in the charge to the Seventy (10:10). They are due to the use of independent non-Marcan sources.

(L) 15. Verily, I say to you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrhah in the day of judgement than for that city.] Lk. has similar words in the charge to the Seventy: “I say to you, that for Sodom in that day it shall be more tolerable than for that city.” Sodom is used in the N.T. as a typical instance of the execution of divine judgement; cf. 11:23, 24, Luke 10:12, Luke 17:29, Romans 9:29, Romans 9:2 P 2:6, Jude 1:7. So in Jub. 36:10 “On the day of turbulence, and execration, and indignation, and anger, with flaming devouring fire, as He burnt Sodom, so likewise will He burn His land and His city.”—ἡμέρα κρίσεως.] For the omission of the article in a technical phrase, see Blass, p. 151. For the end of the world as a day of judgement, see the references in Volz, Jüd. Eschat. p. 188; Charles, Enoch, p. 126; and cf. Ps.-Sol. 15:12 “The sinners shall perish in the Lord’s day of judgement for ever”; Jub. 4:19 “until the day of judgement”; Secrets of Enoch 39:1, 2 Es 7:102, 113, 12:34.

(L) 16. Behold, I send you forth as sheep to the midst of wolves: be therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.] The first clause, with ἄρνας for πρόβατα, occurs in Luke 10:3 in the charge to the Seventy, and is probably to be reconstructed in the fragment called Fragment of a Lost Gospel, published by Grenfell and Hunt. It there stands immediately after fragments of a saying parallel to Luke 11:52 = Matthew 23:13.—φρόνιμοι ὠς οἱ ὄφεις.] Cf. Genesis 3:1 ὁ δὲ ὄφις ἦν φρονιμώτατος.

It will have been noticed that in the preceding verses Mt. seems to have borrowed Mark 6:6-11. Lk. in the parallel section seems also to have borrowed Mark 6:7-12. Mt. and Lk., in several striking respects, agree against Mk., e.g. προσκαλεσάμενος—ἔδωκεν, Matthew 10:1 = συνκαλεσάμενος—ἔδωκεν, Luke 9:1. καὶ θεραπεύειν πᾶσαν νόσον Mat_1 = καὶ νόσους θεραπεύειν, Luke 9:1. Both have μήτε (δὲ) ῥάβδον. Both add “nor silver.” Both add a reference to a city, ἐξερχόμενοι ἔξω—τῆς πόλεως ἐκείνης, Mat_14 = ἐξερχόμενοι�Luke 9:5. Both have κονιορτόν for Mk.’s χοῦν. The case is complicated by the fact that Lk., in the charge to the Seventy (ch. 10), has verses parallel to Matthew 9:37, Matthew 9:38, Matthew 9:10:7, Matthew 9:10b, Matthew 9:12-13, Matthew 9:15, Matthew 9:16a, and also has parallels to Mt.’s expansions or alterations of Mk. in Matthew 10:9 μὴ ὑποδήματα, 11 πόλιν. These facts seem to be best accounted for by supposing that Mt.’s modifications of Mk. are due to the fact that he not infrequently substitutes for Mk.’s phrases others which were more familiar to him. He may, of course, have had before him in writing another account of the charge to the Twelve, or of words spoken to disciples with reference to their mission work, and it is probable that the Logia contained such an account. Lk., in copying Mk., has also been influenced by his memory of other forms of Christ’s charge. Sometimes the phraseology which he remembers, or the second source which he uses, agrees with Mt.’s source. In compiling or copying the charge to the Seventy, the language of his source, oral or written, is often in agreement with the language of verses which Mt. has inserted in the charge to the Twelve. In other words, the situation is best explained as follows. Mt. has before him Mk.’s short account. He also has quite probably a section of the Logia containing a charge to the Twelve. These he combines, with quite possibly insertions or turns of phrase from his reminiscence of forms of the charge current in Church circles. Lk. has before him Mk., and quite possibly one or more other accounts of the charge. Amongst these may have been the first Gospel. He sometimes substitutes for Mk.’s phrases others drawn either from Mt., or from another source which was closely allied to Mt. in phraseology. The common theory that Mt. and Lk. both used (a) Mk., (b) the Logia, and that Lk. had also a third source, is too artificial to be carried through the Gospels, and does not leave enough to the independence of the Evangelists.

17. The editor is reminded by the ἐν μέσῳ λύκων which he has just written of a passage which occurs later in Mk.’s Gospel (13:9b-13). He therefore inserts it here, though it is clear that it does not, like the preceding sayings, refer to the Apostolic mission during Christ’s lifetime, but to their preaching after His death.

(M) But beware of men: for they shall deliver you up to Sanhedrins, and in their synagogues shall they scourge you.] Mk. has: “But take ye heed to yourselves. They shall deliver you up to Sanhedrins, and in synagogues shall ye be beaten.”—προσέχετε�Mark 8:15 βλέπετε�Mark 13:23, Mark 13:33.—παραδώσουσι] Mt. as often inserts a connecting particle, here γάρ.—συνέδρια] the local courts of justice; see Schürer, 11. i. 151.—καὶ ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς μαστιγώσουσιν ὑμᾶς] Mk. has the harsh καὶ εἰς συναγωγὰς δαρήσεσθε. For the substitution of ἐν for εἰς, cf. 24:18 = Mark 13:16, and Introduction, p. xxvii.

(M) 18. And before rulers and kings shall ye be led for My sake, for a testimony to them and to the Gentiles.] Mk. has: “And before rulers and kings shall ye stand (fast) for My sake, for a testimony to them.”—ἀχθήσεσθε] for Mk.’s σταθήσεσθε is suggested by ἄγωσιν of Mk v. 11.—καὶ τοῖς ἔθνεσιν] for Mk.’s harsh καὶ εἰς πάντα τὰ ἔθνη, which in Mk. belongs to the following verse. The editor could not take over the next few words, πρῶτον δεῖ κηρυχθῆναι τὸ εὐαγγέλιον, since they are obviously unsuited to this charge to the Twelve. He should therefore have stopped at μαρτύριον αὐτοῖς. See on 24:14.

(M) 19. And when they shall deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for there shall be given to you in that hour what ye shall speak.] Mk. has: And when they shall lead you, delivering you up, do not be taking thought beforehand what ye shall speak. But whatsoever shall be given to you in that hour, this speak.”

ὅταν δέ] Mk. has καὶ ὅταν; see Introduction, p. xx—παραδῶσιν] Mk. has ἄγωσιν—παραδιδόντες. The editor has carried the ἄγωσιν into the previous verse �Luke 12:11.

(M) 20. For not ye are the speakers, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.] Mk. has: “For not ye are the speakers, but the Holy Spirit.”

(M) 21. And brother shall deliver up brother to death, and father, child: and children shall rise up against parents, and shall kill them.] So Mk. with καί for δέ at the beginning. See Introduction, p. xx. Social strife is a common feature of the Apocalyptic description of the last days; cf. 2 Esther 5:9 “all friends shall destroy one another”; 6:24 “At that time shall friends make war one against another like enemies”; Jub. 23:19 “And they will strive one with another, the young with the old, and the old with the young, the poor with the rich, and the lowly with the great, and the beggar with the prince”; Apoc. Bar 70:3 “And they will hate one another, and provoke one another to fight; and the mean will rule over the honourable, and those of low degree will be extolled above the famous”; Enoch 56:7, 99:5, 100:1. See note on v. 34.

(M) 22. And ye shall be hated by all for My name’s sake. But he that endured to the end, he shall be saved.] So Mk. In Mk. the τέλος is the coming of the Son of Man in the period after the great tribulation; cf. 2 Es 6:25 “Whosoever remaineth—he shall be saved, and shall see My salvation, and the end of the world”; 9:7, 8 “And every one that shall be saved—shall be preserved.”—ὑπομείνας] cf. Daniel 12:12 (Th.) μακάριος ὁ ὑπομένων.

(L) 23. But when they persecute you in this city, flee to the other: for verily I say to you, Ye shall not exhaust the cities of Israel, until the Son of Man come.] The εἰς τέλος of the last verse has carried away the mind of the editor, in spite of his context, to the thought of the Second Coming. The apostles had been forbidden to go to the Gentiles or Samaritans. They were to preach to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, vv. 5, 6. In this work they would suffer persecution, vv. 17-22. But persecution would not become so universal that a city of Israel could not be found as a refuge before the Son of Man came. It seems to be impossible to interpret this verse of a coming of Christ to His missionaries during His lifetime. In this Gospel the coming of the Son of Man is always a final coming after His death to inaugurate the kingdom.

19. πῶς ἥ] om. S1 a b k.

23. After τὴν ὲτέραν] D L S1 a b k g1 q h add: “and if they persecute you in the other, flee ye to another.” The words, as Merx points out, seem necessary to explain the following exhortation.

24. The editor here collects together other sayings bearing upon persecution.

(L) A disciple is not above the teacher, nor a slave above his master.] Lk. in his Sermon (6:40) has clause a, adding: “but every one who is perfected shall be as his teacher.”

(L) 25. Sufficient for the disciple that he be as his teacher, and the slave (shall be) as his master. If they called the master of the house Beelzeboul, how much more the members of his house?] In Lk. the saying about the disciple and his teacher illustrates the saying about the blind leading the blind. Because a blind man cannot be directed by a blind man, so a scholar dependent on his teacher cannot receive more wisdom than his teacher has. At the best, he will he as wise as his teacher. Here the words have a different application, and are intended as a warning to the disciples to expect persecution. If their Master has been ill-treated and slandered, they must expect similar treatment. It is clear that Mt. and Lk. were acquainted with the saying in a detached form or in different contexts.—ἵνα γένηται] Here as in 8:8 practically equivalent to the infinitive. See Moulton, p. 206 ff.—Βεελζεβούλ] Here clearly a term of reproach.1 In 12:24 it is wrongly made equivalent to arch-devil. It has been traced to the בעל זבוב = god of flies, of 2 K 1:6. This has been changed into בעל זָבול in order to introduce assimilation to the sound of זבל = dung. In B. Ab. Zar 186 the sacrifice (זכת) of the heathen is ironically called זבל “dung.” Cf. Dalm. Gram. p. 137. The objection to this explanation is that there is no evidence that Baalzebul was adopted into the popular demonology as a powerful devil, or that flies were particularly identified with evil spirits. Others connect zebul with the Hebrew זבול meaning “lofty dwelling,” cf. 1 K 8:13, Isaiah 63:15; but זבול in this sense is used as the dwelling of God, whereas we should expect here some term equivalent to Hades, the abode of evil spirits. In the Rabbinical literature, Zebul is the name of the fourth heaven, in which are the heavenly Jerusalem, the Temple, the Altar, and Michael.2 In the apocalyptic literature the lord of evil spirits and the Antichrist is called Beliar; cf. Charles on Ascension of Isaiah 1:8.


26-33. The editor here inserts a section which finds a parallel in Luke 12:2-9, where it is ascribed to an occasion at a later period in Christ’s life. There is a good deal of agreement in language, with some striking differences. These differences do not favour the theory that the two Evangelists borrowed from the same written source; and the difference in historical setting is still more unfavourable to such a view, unfavourable to such a view, unless the supposed source contained sayings without any historical settings. It is probable that the two writers drew these words from different written sources, Mt.’s being the Logia.

(L) 26. Fear them not, therefore; for nothing is covered which shall not be revealed, and hidden which shall not be known.] Three times in the following verses we get this “fear not.” See Introduction, p. 65. The saying about that which is hidden being revealed seems to have been a traditional utterance of Christ which could be adapted to any context. Mk. has it after the parable of the Sower, 4:22, in the difficult form, οὐ γὰρ ἔστιν κρυπτὸν ἐὰν μὴ ἵνα φανερωθῇ οὐδὲ ἐγένετο�Mark 4:22 in his parallel section. Lk. in the parallel to Mk. has οὐ γὰρ ἔστιν κρυπτὸν ὃ οὐ φανερὸν γεηέσεται οὐδὲ�Matthew 10:26-33, but assigned to a different occasion. The saying in 12:2 runs thus: οὐδὲν δὲ συγκεκαλυμμένον ἐστίν, ὃ οὐκ�

(L) 27. What I say to you in the darkness, speak ye in the light; and what you hear at the ear (in whispers), proclaim upon the housetops.] Lk. has: “Wherefore �

(L) 32. Every one, therefore, who shall acknowledge Me before men, I also will acknowledge him before My Father which is in the heavens.] Lk. has: “And I say to you, Every one who shall acknowledge Me before men, also the Son of Man will acknowledge him before the angels of God.” ὁμολογεῖν ἐν occurs only here and in Luke 12:6. It is an Aramaic and Syriac idiom. Cf. even Moulton, p. 104: “It seems best not to look for any justification of this usage in Greek.”—τοῦ πατρός μου τοῦ ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοῖς] See on 5:16.

(L) 33. But whosoever shall deny Me before men, I also will deny him before My Father which is in the heavens.] Lk. has: “But he who denied Me before men, shall be denied before the angels of God.” Vv. 32, 33 find a differently worded parallel in Mark 8:38, which the editor of Mt. omits when he comes to that section of Mk.

(L) 34. The thought of persecution, especially of persecution at the hands of near relatives, reminds the editor of other sayings bearing upon the divisions caused by Christ’s teaching in families.

Think not that I came to cast peace upon the earth. I came not to cast peace, but a sword.] This and the following verse find a parallel in Luke 12:51-53 in a different context. Lk. has: “Think ye (δοκεῖτε) that I came (παρεγενόμην) to give peace on the earth? No, I tell you, but division.” Phraseology and context alike differ. The two Evangelists draw from different sources.

Μὴ νομίσητε ὅτι ἦλθον—οὐκ ἦλθον] The same formula occurs in 5:17. The editor probably assimilates.

35. For I came to divide a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a bride against her mother-in-law.] Luke 12:52, Luke 12:53 has a similar thought in different words.

Cf. B. Sanhed. 97a “In the period when the Son of David shall come, a daughter will rise up against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.” For similar formulas in Babylonian Inscriptions, cf. Jeremias, Babylonisches im NT, p. 97.

Cf. also Sotah 49a b “The son despises the father, the daughter rebels against the mother, the daughter-in-law against the mother-in-law, and a man’s enemies are they of his own household.”

(L) 36. And a man’s enemies (shall be) those of his household.] This and the previous verse seem to be a reminiscence of Micah 7:6.

(L) 37. He who loveth father or mother more than Me, is not worthy of Me; and he who loveth son or daughter more than Me, is not worthy of Me.] This and the following verse find a parallel in Luke 14:26-27. But context and phraseology are alike different. The Evangelists draw from different sources. Lk. has: “If any man come to Me, and hate not his own father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brothers, and sisters, yea, and also his own life, he cannot be My disciple.”

(L) 38. And he who taketh not his cross, and followeth after Me, is not worthy of Me.] Lk. has: “Whosoever beareth not his cross, and cometh after Me, cannot be My disciple.” It is clear that in the Synoptic Gospels we have three recensions of this saying, viz. (a) Mark 8:34 = Matthew 16:24 = Luke 9:23, a positive form, εἴ τις θέλει ὀπίσω μον ἐλθεῖν (Lk. ἔρχεσθαι)�Matthew 10:38, a negative form, ὃς οὐ λαμβάνει τὸν σταυρὸν αὐτοῦ καὶ�Luke 14:27, another negative form in a different context, ὅστις οὐ βαστάζει τὸν σταυρὸν ἐαυτοῦ καὶ ἔρχεται ὀπίσω μου. The two latter look like independent translations of a Semitic original. It is commonly assumed that this saying betrays reflection upon the manner of Christ’s death. So far as Lk. is concerned, the thought of discipleship as involving probable death in persecution, seems less obvious than that of faithful discipleship simply. It would not have been surprising had we found “yoke” for “cross” there. The Rabbis spoke of a man as receiving the yoke of the law, cf: Ab 36; or the yoke of the kingdom of the heavens, cf. B. Berakhoth 13a. So Christ, elsewhere, Matthew 11:29, spoke of His yoke. But it is historically probable that Christ in speaking of His death should anticipate it as one of crucifixion. This had become, as it would seem, typical of violent death. It is so used in the parables of the Mechilta. Cf. Fiebig, Altjüd. Gleichnisse, p. 44: “(Like) a robber who entered in and outraged the king’s palace, (saying), If I find the king’s son I will seize him and kill and crucify him.” Cf. Plato, Rep. ii. 361: “The just man—will be impaled.” The condemned man carried his cross to the place of execution. Cf. Artemidorus, ii. 56: ὁ μέλλων αὐτῷ (σταυρῷ) προσηλοῦσθαι πρότερον αὐτὸν βαστάζει;1 Bereshith Rabba, Par. 56 (Wünsche, p. 266): “Abraham took the wood of the offering as one who bears his cross upon his shoulder”; Plut. de Sera Num. Vind. c. 9: καὶ τῷ σώματι τῶν κολαζομέων ἕκαστος κακούργων ἐκφέρει τὸν αὐτοῦ σταυρόν. The thought in Matthew 10:38 is no doubt of death in persecution. The disciples would be dragged before courts of justice, v. 17; they would be killed by their relatives, v. 21. But they were not to fear physical death, v. 28. If they shrank back and recanted their faith in Christ, He would deny them before God, v. 33. They must be prepared to go to a shameful death, following His example, v. 38.

39. He that found his life shall lose it; and he that lost his life for My sake shall find it). This saying occurs in four forms: (1) Mark 8:35 = Matthew 16:25 = Luke 9:24 ὃς γὰρ ἐὰν (Lk. ἂν) θέλῃ τὴν ψυχὴν αὐτοῦ (Mk. ἐαυτοῦ ψυχὴν) σῶσαι�Matthew 10:38 ὁ εὑρὼν τὴν ψυχὴν αὐτοῦ�Luke 17:33, in a different context, ὃς ἐὰν ζητήσῃ τὴν ψυχὴν αὐτοῦ περιποιήσασθαι�John 12:25 ὁ φιλῶν τὴν ψυχὴν αὐτοῦ�

In Mar_8 = Mat_16 =Luk_9, and in Mat_10, this saying is connected with the saying about bearing the cross.

Here in Mt. it clearly has reference to death in persecution. “He who shrinks from death, and wishes to preserve his life of the body, will indeed do so, but will lose the higher life of the soul into which he would have passed through martyrdom. He who is content to suffer death because of his faithfulness to My teaching, will forfeit the life of the body, but will make discovery on the other side of death of the higher life of the soul.”

(L) 40. He who receiveth you receiveth Me, and he who receiveth Me receiveth Him that sent Me.] Cf. Mark 9:37.

(L) 41. He who receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive the reward of a prophet; and he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive the reward of a righteous man.] V. 40 finds a parallel in Mark 9:37b ὃς ἂν ἓν τῶν τοιούτων παιδίων δέξηται ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματί μου ἐμὲ δέχεται· καὶ ὃς ἂν ἐμὲ δέχηται οὐκ ἐμὲ δέχεται�

(M) 42. And whosoever shall give to drink to one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say to you, he shall not lose his reward.] This saying is clearly out of place here, because there is nothing to the context to explain the meaning of τῶν μικρῶν τούτων. It occurs again in Mark 9:41 with ὑμᾶς for “these little ones.” ὃς γὰρ ἂν ποτίσῃ ὑμᾶς ποτήριον ὕδατος ἐν ὀνόματι ὅτι Χριστοῦ ἐστέ,�Mark 9:41. On the other hand, τῶν μικρῶν τούτων in Matthew 10:42 can only be explained as a reminiscence of Mark 9:41, Mark 9:42.

M the Second Gospel.

E editorial passages.

1 ὀνὸματα is read by א A C L al, ὄνομα by B D.

2 οὒς καὶ�Luke 6:15. If so, the title�Mark 6:20.

LXX. The Septuagint Version.

Th. Theodotion.

Dalm. Dalman.

B. Babylonian Talmud.

al i.e. with other uncial MSS.

S Syriac version: Sinaitic MS.

L the Matthæan Logia.

Ditt. Dittenberger Sylloge.

1 Deissmann, Exp. Times, Nov. 1906, p. 62, suggests that πήρα means “a beggar’s collecting bag,” and quotes in support a Greek inscription of the Roman period found in Syria.

DB. Dictionary of the Bible (Hastings).

Jub. jubilees.

Ps.-Sol. The Psalms of Solomon.

1 C E al have Βεελζεβούλ; א B., Βεεζεβούλ; S1 c g2 Beelzebub. See on 12:24.

2 Cf. Chagiga 12b.

1 Quoted by Dr. Bigg, The Church’s Task under the Roman Empire, p. 79.

Plut. Plutarch.

Bibliographical Information
Driver, S.A., Plummer, A.A., Briggs, C.A. "Commentary on Matthew 10". International Critical Commentary NT. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/icc/matthew-10.html. 1896-1924.
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