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Matthew (New Cambridge Bible Commentary) [Paperback]

Craig A. Evans

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Book Description

6 Feb 2012 New Cambridge Bible Commentary
This book is a verse-by-verse analysis of the New Testament Gospel of Matthew. It provides a comprehensive introduction to the Gospel, which describes the world of Jesus and his first followers. This commentary explores the historical, social and religious contexts of Matthew and examines the customs, beliefs and ideas that inform the text. Unfamiliar to many readers of the New Testament, this background will help readers fully understand the text of Matthew, which focuses on what Jesus taught and why the religious authorities in Jerusalem rejected his message and gave him up to the Roman governor for execution. This book will be an important tool for the clergy, scholars and other interested readers of Matthew.

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Review

"...this is an extremely valuable commentary that should take its place beside the best on the shelf. In the preface Evans states that this work 'is not written primarily for the scholar,' but he expresses his hope, nonetheless, that 'scholars will find it useful. They will." --Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

Book Description

A verse-by-verse analysis of the New Testament Gospel of Matthew. This commentary explores the historical, social and religious contexts of Matthew and examines the customs, beliefs and ideas that inform the text. Unfamiliar to many readers of the New Testament, this background will help readers fully understand the text.

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Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great commentary from a great scholar 17 July 2012
By Brian C. Leport - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I received Craig A. Evans Matthew from the New Cambridge Bible Commentary as a gift for my indexing work on the project. I knew from the digital version I viewed that it was going to be a useful volume. Now that I have spent some time with it in print I can say that it is worth adding to your library.

The New Cambridge Bible Commentary uniquely combined in-depth scholarship with readability and a user friendly structure. There are some commentaries that are so meticulous that they are difficult to read. There are others that are easy to read, but the content is too brief. This series seems to do a fine job at providing a middle ground. I have Bill T. Arnold's Genesis from the same series.

The series is edited by Ben Witherington III and it appears to span the broad spectrum of New Testament scholarship including people like Arnold, Evans, Witherington, and others like Walter Brueggemann, Craig S. Keener, Amy-Jill Levine, and Duane F. Watson.

The introduction is simple and straightforward. The commentary flows nicely addressing manageable portions of text. There are occasional supplementary sections called "A Closer Look" that appear in gray boxes throughout the commentary providing an aside on subjected like "The Holy Spirit," "Josephus on John the Baptist," "Demons in the Desert," and "The Disciples in the Talmud."

Evans does interact with other commentaries, but he is intentional about limiting the attention given to secondary literature. He prefaces that his primary conversation partners are the commentaries of John Nolland, R.T. France, Robert Gundry, and Craig S. Keener (p. xv). This doesn't mean that there is a lack of sources cited (I know, I did the indexing), but that the commentary does a solid job of being selective when mentioning and interacting with secondary literature so that the text itself is primary.

This is the work of a confessional scholar. Evans affirms the historicity of Jesus, the virgin birth, and so forth, but he does serious historical-critical work as well. I don't think I have to defend his reputation as a serious scholar of Christian origins and literature and Second Temple Judaism.

For the full review go here: (...)
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars in my opinion the best one-volume commentary 1 Feb 2014
By GM - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Evans does not do a "commentary of commentaries," but points out the questions relevant to a section, mentions alternative interpretations, and gives his usually sane opinion. This is useful and lets you prepare for the weekly Bible study efficiently. Also useful: he generally gives you the text of a citation instead of just the reference: this saves you the trouble of looking it up and minimizes distraction. It was generous of the publisher to let him do that--it significantly lengthens his text--and the same can be said of the footnotes (some books these days minimize or omit footnotes to save costs, referring the reader to some URL that never seems to work.) Unfortunately, unless you have access to JSTOR or a nearby university library you won't be able to read those references.

Don't expect lengthy discussion of variant readings or nuances of the Greek--if you want that, go to the Yale Anchor Bible or other multivolume commentaries. Also, Evans for reasons he does not explain constantly cites parallels to Jesus's sayings. For example, he glosses Mt 9:37 ("the harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few" (aren't you glad I gave you the quote and not just the citation?!) by citing the Sayings of the Fathers ("Rabbi Tarfon said "the task is great and the laborers are idle"). Evans claims this shows Jesus' saying "seems to be proverbial." But aside from the fact that Rabbi Tarfon's laborers are idle, not few, Evans never tells us what period he lived in or when his statement was written down. There is no critical or even introductory discussion of the parallel Jewish and classical sources he cites--some of them seem to post-date Jesus by hundreds of years. In general I found the "parallels" neither compelling nor illuminating.

A minor point: the paper is excellent and the book is bound in signatures--another example of generosity in this series
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Craig's commentary falls short 15 Nov 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Evans is a highly regarded scholar, but I was disappointed in this commentary. He seems driven to find contemporary parallels to
Incidents/sayings in Matthew's gospel even when the contexts don't match. Too rarely does he comment on the substance of the passage. It's obvious that he has a wide grasp of second temple literature (or a handy concordance) but he doesn't seem to use those resources to shed light on interpretive issues in Matthew's gospel.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Much 27 Oct 2013
By william - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
this book brings the current debates on the Gospel of Matthew. Updated bibliography. Writing simple yet profound. indispensable Reading. thanks
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