Monday, October 30, 2006

Matthew as a Legalist?

Willi Marxsen advocated that Matthew was a legalistic because in the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew presents Jesus as giving moral imperatives with no indicatives that precede them. Charles Talbert (Reading the Sermon on the Mount, p. 43) contends that there is an indicative in Matthew, that of Jesus' gracious call to his disciples and his presence with them. He writes:

Matthew’s way, moreover, involves him neither in soteriological legalism nor in legalistic covenantal nomism. Like Paul and the Fourth Evangelist, his soteriology is by grace from start to finish. He just uses a different conceptual repertoire. Surely he cannot be faulted for that.

1 comment:

cruz-control said...

I've had Talbert's course on Matthew in which he outlines all of this. His knowledge of ancient sources and their function in the NT allow him to draw conclusions from the perspectives of the NT authors (in this case Matthew).

Really good stuff.