Description: In this masterful study of what has long been considered the “most Jewish” gospel, John Kampen deftly argues that the gospel of Matthew advocates for a distinctive Jewish sectarianism, rooted in the Jesus movement. He maintains that the writer of Matthew produced the work within an early Jewish sect, and its narrative contains a biography of Jesus which can be used as a model for the development of a sectarian Judaism in Lower Syria, perhaps Galilee, toward the conclusion of the first century CE.
Rather than viewing the gospel of Matthew as a Jewish-Christian hybrid, Kampen considers it a Jewish composition that originated among the later followers of Jesus a generation or so after the disciples. This method of viewing the work allows readers to understand what it might have meant for members of a Jesus movement to promote their understanding of Jewish history and law that would sustain Jewish life at the end of the first century.
Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Synoptic Gospels, Matthew, Literature, Methods, Historical Approaches, History, History of Judaism, Greco-Roman Period, Social-Scientific Approaches
Review by Laura Robinson
Citation: Laura Robinson, review of John Kampen, Matthew within Sectarian Judaism, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2020).
Adobe Acrobat Reader
All RBL reviews are published in PDF format. To view these reviews, you must have downloaded and installed the FREE version of Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you do not have the Reader or you have an older version of the Reader, you can download the most recent version now.