Do the disciples in Matthew really understand Jesus, his mission and his message? Although redaction approaches have typically answered this question affirmatively, a narrative reading of Matthew highlights the ways the disciples frequently misunderstand both what Jesus is called to do and what he intends for his own followers. This study offers such a narrative reading, arguing that not only do the disciples frequently fail to understand Jesus, they do not progress toward greater understanding as the story unfolds. The author explores the way that this portrayal functions in the story and in shaping Matthew’s concept of discipleship.
“Brown’s nuanced study of the disciples in the First Gospel represents a welcome contribution that demonstrates the relevance of narrative criticism for the treatment of such themes. In addition, its clear style and argument makes the book accessible to seminary and graduate students.” —Jean-François Racine, Review of Biblical Literature
“a welcome contribution to Matthean studies” — Expository Times
Jeannine K. Brown is Assistant Professor of New Testament at Bethel Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota.
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