A Note On Matthew 24:10-12 -- By: David Wenham

Journal: Tyndale Bulletin
Volume: TYNBUL 31:1 (NA 1980)
Article: A Note On Matthew 24:10-12
Author: David Wenham

A Note On Matthew 24:10-12

David Wenham

A. A Pre-Synoptic Unit Of Material

One of the baneful effects of the Two Document Hypothesis has been that scholars have often too quickly dismissed non-Marcan material in Matthew and Luke as secondary and late. I become increasingly convinced that, if Matthew and Luke did use Mark, they also knew well early non- Marcan traditions of the life and teaching of Jesus. Matthew 24:10–12 is a case in point.

It is possible to regard these verses as Matthew’s own composition. It can be explained (a) that Matthew had already used the parallel Marcan section (Mark 13:9–13) earlier in his gospel (in his 10:17–21), and so that he composed this section to avoid repetition; (b) that in this section he has drawn on, but reworded, Marcan material - compare Matthew 24:10b with Mark 13:12, 13 and Matthew 24:11 with Mark 13:22; (c) that there are favourite Matthean terms like σκανδαλλίζειν and ἀνομία in these verses.

But to classify these verses as Matthew’s own work on these grounds is of adequate:

(1) Matthew does not seem very concerned to avoid repetition in the section 24:9–14. In fact his 24:9b echoes 10:21b, 22 very closely, and his 24:13 as an exact repetition of 10:22b. So at best he is very half-hearted in his determination to avoid repeats, and what we have to explain is why he avoided some parts of 10:17–21 but retained others almost word for word.

(2) 24:10–12 are a unit with a definite structure and style. The structure is as follows:

A. Καὶ τότε σκανδαλισθήσονται πολλοὶ

B. Καὶ ἀλλήλους παραδώσουσιν

B. Καὶ μισήσουσιν ἀλλήλους.

C. Καὶ πολλοὶ ψευδοπροφήται ἐγερθήσονται

C. Καὶ πλανήσουσιν πολλούς

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