Matthew's Jesus: The Divine Exposed
There are various beliefs concerning different facets about Jesus. One of longest running debates about Jesus is whether or not he was human or divine. The purpose of this thesis is to examine one element that stems from the issue of Jesus’s nature. It can be argued that the Synoptic Gospels support Jesus’s divinity or humanness. This thesis examines the Gospel of Matthew in an attempt to show how the gospel portrays Jesus. This is not to say that Jesus was either human or divine, but that the gospel is multi-dimensional in its presentation Jesus. This examination is based on three different elements that can be seen in Matthew’s narrative and rhetoric. The first element is the literary device known as an inclusio, formed by Matt 1.23 and 28.20, connoting divine presence. This inclusio provides a framework for understanding the Gospel. The second element concerns the reactions that Jesus receives based on his actions and words. The passages of Matt 14.22–33 and 9.2–8 portrays the reactions of worship and accusation respectively. The final element comes from the same passages, but it relates to the allusions made linking Jesus with the God of Israel. Through my research I found that, though Matthew does present Jesus as a human who eats, sleeps, and bleeds, the gospel also presents Jesus’s identity as being one with the God of Israel. Two books I would recommend for further study are J.R. Daniel Kirk’s A Man Attested by God, Larry Hurtado’s Lord Jesus Christ.
Carpenter, Cody James Everett