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The Oxford Bible Commentary Line-by-line commentary for the New Revised Standard Version Bible.

Date and Place of Origin.

1.

Although there has recently been a slight tendency to date Matthew before 70 CE, the majority opinion rightly holds that Matthew was written in the last quarter of the first century CE. (1) Ignatius of Antioch, the Didache, and Papias—all from the first part of the second century—show knowledge of Matthew, which accordingly must have been composed before 100 CE. (See e.g. Ign., Smyrn. 1; Did. 8.2.) (2) 22:7 (a seeming allusion to the fall of Jerusalem) and the dependence upon Mark (written c.60–70 CE) indicate a date after 70 CE. (3) Matthew reveals points of contact with early rabbinic Judaism as it struggled to consolidate itself after the Jewish war; see esp. Davies (1964 ).

2.

Many have urged that Matthew originated in Antioch in Syria. Peter's prominence harmonizes well with his undoubted status there (cf. Gal 2:11 ), and the mixture of Jew and Gentile in a large urban area is consistent with composition in Antioch. Further, Ignatius may be the earliest witness to Matthew, and he was bishop of Antioch. But these and additional considerations do not add up to proof, and patristic tradition places neither this gospel nor the apostle Matthew in Antioch. So other suggestions have been made—Jerusalem, Galilee, Alexandria, Caesarea Maritima, Phoenicia, or, more generally, east of the Jordan (on the basis of 4:25 and 19:1 , which may view Palestine as being on the other side of the Jordan).

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