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Title: Jesus' fulfilment of the Torah and prophets : inherited writing strategies and Torah interpretation in Matthew's Gospel
Author: Stiles, Steven James
ISNI:       0000 0004 7654 555X
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2018
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This thesis takes a different approach to the contested topic of Jesus and the Torah in Matthew's Gospel. Rather than asking whether or not Jesus' radical teaching on the Torah (Matt 5:17-48) affirms the validity of the Torah, surpasses it, or if it situates the Matthean community within or outside the bounds of Judaism, this thesis examines the Matthean Jesus' radical teaching as an example of first-century Torah interpretation. Specifically, it examines Second Temple writing strategies used to present interpretations as an authoritative representation of the Torah and compares them with the way Matthew authorises Jesus' teaching on the Torah. This comparison shows that Matthew uses inherited writing strategies to participate in the Second Temple and late first-century Jewish phenomenon of innovating the Torah to meet the needs of a specific context. Chapter 1 examines the phenomenon of Torah interpretation in the Second Temple period, both the contexts that caused it and the logic behind it. Chapter 2 analyses Matthew's Gospel to see if it exhibits a similar context and logic as other Second Temple texts that interpret the Torah. Chapter 3 then uses Hindy Najman's concept of Mosaic Discourse as a lens to observe the writing strategies Matthew uses to present Jesus' teaching in the Sermon on the Mount as an authoritative representation of Sinaitic Revelation. Chapter 4 then considers how the genre of biography was used to legitimise a historical figure in a polemical context. Chapter 5 then examines how Matthew similarly used the opportunities of biographical writing to legitimise Jesus as an authority on the Torah in a polemical context and, therefore, authorise his teaching on the Torah as the correct way to follow God's commandments.
Supervisor: Foster, Paul ; Bond, Helen Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Matthew's Gospel ; Gospel of Matthew ; Torah interpretation ; Second Temple Judaism