Reading Matthew across the Centuries

Although historical criticism has shed significant light on the origins of the Gospel of Matthew, its sources, theological perspective, and first audiences, it has not addressed the question of what Matthew’s text has meant for real audiences in subsequent centuries. This article introduces some of the benefits of studying the reception and effects of Matthew’s gospel, understood broadly to include media such as literature, music, liturgy, and visual art as well as classic commentaries and other scholarly works. After introducing the different concerns and approaches of reception historians, it explores four dimensions of Matthew’s reception history: its capacity to challenge and surprise; its treatment of Matthean characters; its negative effects; the particular value of the reception of Matthew in visual art.

See Also: Matthew Through the Centuries (Wiley Blackwell Bible Commentaries; Hoboken: Wiley, 2019).

By Ian Boxall
The Catholic University of America
Washington, D.C.
May 2019

The Primacy of the First Gospel

The British nineteenth-century art critic and social reformer John Ruskin (1819–1900) famously posed this question: which of the gospels would be your preferred reading companion should you ever find yourself in prison or alone in a desert? Ruskin’s answer was unhesitating: The Gospel According to Matthew. Ruskin found Mark’s text too brief to pass muster. John’s was too mysterious and Luke’s too “formal.” Matthew’s, by contrast, struck just the right note. Ruskin was impressed by its “harmonious and gentle fullness.”[1] By this, he seems to have meant that this gospel had greater structural and thematic coherence, and, when set alongside its predecessor Mark, provided a fuller and therefore more satisfying narrative of Christ’s life. In particular, Ruskin highlighted “its perfect Sermon on the Mount,” that radical vision which has inspired countless disciples across the centuries.

Ruskin is far from alone in his preference for Matthew. Almost from the start, this gospel has had functional primacy, aided by the conviction that it was written by an eyewitness, Matthew, the apostle and converted tax-collector (Matt 9:9; 10:3). Matthew’s was the preferred choice for the earliest church lectionaries. Its more reverential portrayal of Jesus and its developed baptismal formula (28:19) gave it particular clout in patristic debates about Christ and the Trinity. Its strong ethical content, typified by that “perfect Sermon on the Mount,” and its emphasis on ecclesiology (as the only gospel to mention the church) made it a fundamental text for catechesis, church order, and ongoing Christian discipleship. Finally, its emphasis on continuity appealed to Jewish Christian communities still observing to varying degrees the Mosaic Law. The popularity of this gospel is evident from the diversity of its advocates: the patristic exegetes Origen of Alexandria and Hilary of Poitiers, Isho‘dad of Merv, ninth-century theologian of the Church of the East, the medieval saint-mystics Hildegard of Bingen and Francis of Assisi, the Italian Renaissance artist Sandro Botticelli, the nineteenth-century Anglican commentator Mary Cornwallis, and the Jamaican Rastafarian songwriter Bob Marley.

But Matthew has also had its detractors, not least in the modern period. In part, this reflects contemporary suspicion of authorities. Hence, the gospel most associated with “institutional” Christianity, for its interest in church structures, practices, and organization, has fallen out of favor. Others are uneasy with the inherent tensions in this gospel, leading to its description as both profoundly Jewish and profoundly anti-Jewish. Its critics have in mind Matt 27:25 (“His blood be on us and on our children”), a text bound up with the tragic and shameful Christian accusation of deicide or “God-killing” against Jewish people. As Rabbi Dan Cohn-Sherbok reminds us, this gospel has “evoked hatred and vituperation against official Judaism.”[2]


Reception and Biblical Interpretation

How is one to make sense of this diverse and complex impact of Matthew’s Gospel? Historical criticism—the exploration of the historical process by which this book came to be written—has been crucial in contextualizing the gospel’s negative rhetoric regarding the “scribes and Pharisees” and the troubling saying at 27:25. The emergent consensus has been that this narrative of Jesus of Nazareth was composed for marginal groups of Christ-followers rooted in Jewish observance and aimed in part at making sense of their experience of persecution from synagogue authorities. Interestingly, this broad picture is not far from the conclusions of some of Matthew’s earliest commentators. Origen regarded Matthew as having been “prepared for the converts from Judaism” (in Eusebius, H.E. 6.25.4), a view shared by Jerome, who even identified the place of writing as Judea (Comm. in Matt., Preface).

The interpretation of Matthew also calls for an understanding of how we got from “then” to “now.” Ironically, the extraordinary success of this gospel was the consequence of a quite radical transformation and dramatic change of audience. Very soon, it would become a foundational text for a predominantly Gentile religion and eventually one with significant political influence. How can one recount this story? Or is it a mistake to view it as a single story, given the diverse ways in which this gospel has been read in very different geographical and cultural contexts in the intervening centuries? What impact has it had on communities and individual human lives, for good as well as sometimes for ill? What vision of its protagonist, Jesus of Nazareth, has it promoted? What is its enduring cultural impact, e.g., in literature, visual art, drama, and film? In short, what is the history (or what are the histories) of its reception?

Reception history and the closely-related Wirkungsgeschichte (“history of effects,” “history of effect,” and “effective history”) have become an increasingly important focus in biblical scholarship. In the case of Matthew, it owes much to the pioneering work of the Swiss New Testament scholar Ulrich Luz, especially his ground-breaking multi-volume commentary in the ecumenical Evangelisch-Katholischer Kommentar (EKK) series.[3] Yet, as Luz himself admits, tracing the history of this gospel’s effects is particularly challenging, given the vastness of potential material for what has been the most popular gospel text.

Moreover, as practiced in biblical scholarship, reception history is undertaken for different reasons and in different ways.[4] Some focus on the premodern reception of the text as a way of knowing better the tradition in which they stand, with particular focus on classic “voices” in that tradition (e.g., Origen, Jerome, Augustine, Isho‘dad of Merv, Aquinas, Nicholas of Lyra, Martin Luther, John Calvin, Menno Simons, or Juan de Maldonado). If undertaken critically, it can help expose the prejudgments (positive and negative) of interpreters in that tradition and their limited perspectives and blind spots. Alternatively, reception historians seek to understand how the same texts came to be read differently in other faith communities. Thus, reception history can have a positive, ecumenical role, sometimes breaking through centuries of polemic and mutual suspicion. In both cases, a by-product is sometimes the discovery that conclusions reached by modern critical scholars—and hailed as radical new insights!—were anticipated or expressed more compellingly by interpreters centuries before. In other words, reception history can function as the history of what we have forgotten, a remedy for what Dale Allison calls “exegetical amnesia.”[5]

For some, then, reception history can help historical critics do a better task in uncovering the original meaning of the text, or, better, original meanings, for premodern exegetes often had a greater appreciation of the multivalence of the text. One particular area where this is evident is that of intertextuality, particularly the scholarly concern to identify Old Testament allusions and echoes in a text like Matthew. Patristic and medieval exegetes tended to have a much richer scriptural “memory bank” than do most contemporary interpreters, leading them to consider quite complex scriptural relationships. At least some of the exegetical strategies they employ, moreover, mirror the kinds of Jewish exegetical methods employed by New Testament authors. Thus, in many (though not all) ways, their instincts are culturally closer to those of the gospel writers and Paul.

Nor is the rediscovery of memory always positive. For many, the priority of reception history is to face up to the detrimental effects the text has had. Or, working with a broad definition of reception history, the task is undertaken to prioritize marginal voices and unexpected receptions which may have been silenced in specific reading communities by those communities’ dominant voices or simply may have been unknown to those communities. Some reception-historical work is very narrowly focused, attending to a specific interpreter, medium, or time period or to the reception of one small passage across the centuries. Others attempt the broader, constructive task of telling the story of a book’s reception: making decisions about significant receptions, appropriate chronological divisions, and potential genealogical relationships.

In the remainder of this paper, we shall explore four dimensions of the reception history of Matthew’s Gospel: its capacity to challenge and surprise; different responses to Matthew’s characters in changing cultural circumstances; the negative effects of certain passages; how visual art has often function as sophisticated exegesis of Matthew’s text. 


Challenge and Surprise

As noted above, Matthew’s “Gospel of the Church” has in recent decades lost something of its gloss, a result in part of cultural suspicion of authorities and of texts regarded as supporting hegemonic institutions. While Matthew’s gospel has undoubtedly functioned in this way, attention to its reception history reveals how this is only part of the story. From early centuries, it has been the favored gospel of communities of radical Christian discipleship and of individuals on the peripheries of institutional Christianity; in more recent times, it has spoken powerfully to some outside the Christian churches. Matthew has inspired monastics (e.g., Antony of Egypt; Hildegard of Bingen), mendicants (e.g., Francis of Assisi and his “lesser brothers”), radical reformers (e.g., Peter Waldo; Thomas Müntzer), and martyrs (e.g., Dietrich Bonhoeffer; Oscar Romero). The Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy offered an influential, radical reading of Matthew’s Sermon on the Mount, exemplified in his 1899 novel Resurrection. Mahatma Gandhi, who was personally influenced by Tolstoy’s reading, read Matthew’s Sermon every day and explicitly acknowledged its centrality in shaping his philosophy of non-violent resistance.

Again, outside the formal boundaries of the churches, this gospel had a profound impact on the Italian communist film director Pier Paolo Pasolini, resulting in his classic 1964 film Il Vangelo secondo Matteo. In a later interview, Pasolini described how he was captivated by Matthew’s characterization of Jesus:


Nothing seems to me more opposed to the modern world than that figure. That Christ, gentle at heart, but “never” so in mind, who never gives up for a moment his own terrible freedom as the will to continually test his own religion – a continual contempt for contradiction and scandal.[6]


Attention to the reception of Matthew can also bring surprises. One such is the medieval exegesis of Matt 16:17-19, central to Roman Catholic doctrine regarding the papacy. The interpretation of “the rock” on which the church is built as Peter, and therefore as Peter’s successors the bishops of Rome, is often regarded as the Catholic interpretation. Yet Catholic scholars in the late Middle Ages and early modern period were remarkably diverse and flexible in exegeting this passage, sometimes content with holding alternative interpretations in tension (the rock as Christ, as Peter, as Peter’s confession of faith). All three are present, for example, in the popular medieval Glossa ordinaria.

Equally surprising, albeit as a minority view, is the positive treatment of Judas Iscariot among some patristic and medieval interpreters. As modern redaction and narrative critics regularly acknowledge, Matthew’s portrait of Judas is more complex than that of his fellow evangelists. He includes a scene where Judas, upon first receiving the thirty pieces of silver, “repented” or “deeply regretted” (27:3). The majority view in this verse’s reception history seems to be that his subsequent suicide overrode his initial change of heart as the manifestation of Judas’ ultimate despair. However, this is not always the case. Origen hints at an alternative view: Judas’ return of the money and subsequent suicide shows “what a power the teaching of Jesus had over this sinner Judas, this thief and traitor, who could not always treat with contempt what he had learned from Jesus” (Contra Celsum 2.11).[7] Most surprising, perhaps, is a 1391 sermon by the Dominican St. Vincent Ferrer. Vincent’s imaginative retelling of the story has Judas attempt to reach Christ on his way to Calvary, to seek forgiveness. Prevented by the large crowd, he instead hanged himself in the hope (subsequently fulfilled) that at least his soul could ask for forgiveness:


… as he took the rope and hanged himself his soul rushed to Christ on Calvary’s mount, asked for forgiveness and received it fully from Christ, went up to heaven with him, and so his soul enjoys salvation with all the elect.[8]


Characters as Exemplars in Changing Circumstances

Judas is but one example of how Matthew makes effective use of characterization, not least for didactic purposes. Reception history can complement the renewed attention to the gospel’s characters typical of contemporary narrative criticism.[9] According to circumstance and audience, for example, the centurion who advocates on behalf of his beloved slave boy (Matt 8:5-13; cf. Luke 7:1-10) has functioned as a type of Gentile who is saved by faith (Hilary of Poitiers) and an exemplar of humility for not insisting on his military rank (Jerome). He has even served as a role model for ordinary Christians receiving holy communion; his words—“Lord, I am not worthy to receive you under my roof, but only speak the word, and your servant will be healed”—were introduced into the Roman rite of the Mass (the phrase “your servant” modified to “my soul”). His story, moreover, has functioned to address the question of Christian participation in the military, or of slave ownership, or of the status of gay Christians: indicative both of the ambiguity of the biblical revelation and of the changed concerns and priorities of readers.

Another ambiguous scene, unique to Matthew, concerns Peter getting out of the boat on the Sea of Galilee to walk toward Jesus, only to sink as his faith wavers (Matt 14:28-31). Its reception history reveals the complexity and nuance of Matthew’s characterization of the apostle and is a striking example of how far theological prejudgments affect interpretation.[10] Should priority be given to Peter’s faith or to his sinking doubts? Is Jesus’ “you of little faith” spoken with encouragement or as a condemnation? Catholic scholars will tend to highlight Peter’s faith; Protestants will emphasize the moment when he wavers and begins to sink into the sea (reflected in the very different assessments of Erasmus and Calvin in the early sixteenth century). Nor does this question only emerge with the Reformation. The third-century fresco of the scene from the baptistery at Dura-Europos (Yale University Art Gallery) contains an inherent ambiguity. Two partially-preserved figures are visible outside the boat. Is Peter the higher of the two figures, walking successfully toward Christ on the sea? Or is he below Christ, already sinking beneath the waves as his faith fails him?[11]

            Perhaps the most striking “afterlife” of a Matthean character revealed by reception history, however, is that of Pilate’s wife. It is particularly noteworthy, given that she is mentioned in just a single verse (Matt 27:19). Known only by her relationship to her husband, this anonymous character does not even appear on stage but merely sends a warning to Pilate from the wings. Yet Matthew’s few words offer rich possibilities for understanding her significance. She has received revelation in a dream (like righteous Joseph and her fellow Gentiles, the Magi: 1:20; 2:12, 13, 19, 22); she has “suffered much” (like Christ himself: 16:21), and “on account of him” (like the disciples: 10:16-23; 24:9).

Later reception gives full weight to this significance, filling the many gaps in Matthew’s narrative. Though her real name has been forgotten, tradition gives her a new name and an independent voice. Most commonly, she is called Prokla or Procula (e.g., Acts of Pilate), expanded to Claudia Procula in the 1619 Chronicle of Pseudo-Dexter. Her positive though fleeting portrayal in Matthew means that she frequently functions as a type of righteous Gentile. As an individual, her speaking up for Christ means that she comes to be viewed variously as a “God-fearer” practicing Judaism, a secret disciple of Jesus already prior to her dream, or a subsequent Christian convert. She has even been canonized as St. Prokla in certain eastern churches (in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, an honor she shares with her husband, Pontius Pilate). Interest in her expands to drama (where in the Middle Ages her dream was considered demonically-inspired since it threatened Christ’s crucifixion and thence humanity’s redemption), novels (most famously Gertrud von le Fort’s 1970 Die Frau des Pilatus), visual art (e.g., Gustave Doré’s Dream of Pilate’s Wife, 1874), and film (e.g., Cecil B. DeMille’s 1927 The King of Kings and Mel Gibson’s 2004 The Passion of the Christ).[12]


Negative Effects

Many of the examples explored so far are essentially positive receptions, exploiting gaps in the biblical text, responding to fresh questions, or enabling characters to function as exemplars for subsequent generations of readers. However, concern for Wirkungsgeschichte or “history of effect” cannot exclude attention to the text’s negative effects.

Most notorious for Matthew are the fateful consequences of 27:25 where “all the people” declare “His blood be on us and on our children” in response to Pilate’s handwashing. Many contemporary Matthean critics, their own interpretations shaped by the horror of the Shoah and consciousness of Christian complicity, read 27:25 not as future prophetic condemnation but as making sense theologically of what had already occurred by Matthew’s time: Rome’s destruction of Jerusalem in 70 ce, witnessed by the “children” of the Jerusalemites present at the death of Jesus. In other words, Matthew 27:25 looks, not forward to innumerable generations of Jewish people, but backward.

Ironically, in changed circumstances, a text reflecting a persecuted minority voice in a late-first-century intra-Jewish debate regarding the status of Jesus of Nazareth would come to effect something very different. Accusations of blame against the Jewish minority by an increasing Christian majority and eventually the specific charge of “deicide” would echo across the centuries. Those Jews present at the trial of Jesus before Pilate chose the devil (Jerome) or the Antichrist (Hilary of Poitiers), and the responsibility for their actions passes to their descendants until the end (Origen). A marginal note in the 1560 Geneva Bible, produced by English Protestant exiles with Puritan sympathies, could not be blunter: “This curse taketh place to this day.” Particularly damning, in the light of what would occur in the following decade, is this excerpt from a sermon by the German theologian Paul Althaus, delivered via radio Good Friday, 1930:


Until the end of history, the terrible word of an unsuspecting realization [looms] over Israel like a thunderstorm: ‘His blood come over us and over our children.’[13]


One occasionally finds an ameliorating voice, such as John Chrysostom, who finds in the thousands who joined the church in Jerusalem according to the early chapters of Acts and the dramatic conversion of the persecutor Saul of Tarsus evidence that God in his mercy failed to confirm “their sentence upon their children” (Homily on Matt 86.2).[14] Thomas Aquinas, though without drawing out the consequences, hints at positive effects of the shedding of Christ’s blood as bringing about the forgiveness of sins (Matt 26:28). In commenting on “His blood be on us and on our children,” Aquinas juxtaposed Genesis 4:10 (in which Abel’s blood cries out for vengeance) with Hebrews 12:24 (which declares that Christ’s blood speaks more effectively than Abel’s).

Moreover, there is an alternative and equally strong tradition in the reception of Matt 27:25 whereby responsibility for Christ’s death lies primarily with sinners, especially Christian sinners (e.g., Catechism of the Council of Trent, Part I, Article IV; Vatican II, Nostra Aetate 4). Interestingly, this reception has often dominated in Christian praxis, especially in the liturgical re-enactment of the passion story in drama and liturgy where the faithful often find themselves in the role of the crowds, fluctuating between cries of “Hosanna!” and shouts of “Crucify him!” It is also reflected in this sixteenth-century German hymn:


Ah twas our great sins and serious transgressions

Nailed Christ, the true son of God to the Cross

For this, let us not sorely scold poor Judas

Not the company of Jews; the guilt is ours![15]


The effects of the closing passage of Matthew’s Gospel (Matt 28:16-20) have also been variable. It contains the so-called “Great Commission” (“Go, make disciples of all the nations …”), a title whose popularity belies the fact that it only seems to derive from the nineteenth century. Recent postcolonial critics have pointed to its problematic reception history regularly used to legitimate colonial expansion and the imposition of European culture to the detriment of the local cultural heritage.[16]

However, this passage has not always functioned as the central missiological text it has become. Early Christian commentators often assumed the command to make disciples of all the nations had been fulfilled in the apostolic age; medieval and early modern interpreters often appealed to quite different texts to justify conversion of pagans (e.g., Luke 14:23: “Go out into the road and lanes, and compel people to come in,” NRSV). Nor is it only modern readers of Matthew who have viewed its association with violent conversion as problematic. In his paraphrase of this passage, the sixteenth-century Dutch humanist scholar Desiderius Erasmus had Jesus speak the following words which highlight how Christ’s command is not to “convert” or even “evangelize” but to “make disciples”—urging reflection on the character of discipleship Jesus has taught:


You will not claim them with weapons or by war, but by those same methods by which I gained this sovereignty for myself: by sacred teaching, by a life worthy of the Gospel, by freely bestowing blessings, by patiently enduring wrongs.[17]


Visualizing Matthew

The breadth of reception history means that other media (e.g., drama, music, visual art) can also be treated as examples of biblical exegesis. Visual artists are often perceptive exegetes of the scriptural text while the visual medium is capable of conveying more immediately than biblical commentaries the multivalence of the text or of making often-subtle connections between scenes by presenting them synchronically on the same canvas. Two examples will illustrate. Raphael’s The Transfiguration (1483-1520; Pinacoteca Vaticana, Rome) effectively pairs the Transfiguration itself with the story of the boy healed by Jesus on his descent (Matt 17:1-20). Both are stories concerning a “son”; Raphael offers a visual representation of the threads linking these two stories.[18] The Triumph of the Innocents by the English Pre-Raphaelite artist William Holman Hunt (1883-1884; Tate Britain, London), unusually combines the massacre of the innocents (Matt 2:16-18) with the flight of the holy family into Egypt (Matt 2:13-15). Hunt offers a striking interpretation of Matthew’s literary interweaving, highlighting not the contrast between the slaughtered babies and the rescued son, but rather their common solidarity in suffering and the narrative’s anticipation of Christ’s own passion.[19]

Alternatively, art can promote a confessional stance also found in textual commentaries, albeit in a more immediate fashion. Giotto’s famous mosaic of the Navicella or “Little Boat” (c. 1305–1315), originally displayed over the entrance to Old Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome, ostensibly depicts the apostle Peter walking out on the water toward Jesus (Matt 14:28-31). Yet the presence of a heavenly St. Peter in the top right suggests that the terrestrial “Peter” treading the waves is meant rather to symbolize Peter’s successor, the pope. Giotto’s Navicella is a potent example of propaganda for the threatened papacy around the time Pope Clement V departed for Avignon. Similar use of Petrine passages to promote papal claims include Massaccio’s The Tribute Money (1425; Brancacci Chapel, Florence), a depiction of Matt 17:24-27, and The Delivery of the Keys by Pietro Perugino (1481-1483; Sistine Chapel, Rome), a visual interpretation of Matt 16:19.

A final dimension of visual exegesis is its capacity to encourage “actualizations” of the text, that is, where the passage is read as an interpretative lens to illuminate contemporary circumstances.[20] The massacre of the innocents particularly lends itself to actualization. Thus, Herod’s armies are often depicted in contemporary military uniforms, whether they are occupying Spaniards of the Netherlands and their German mercenaries in Pieter Brueghel the Elder’s Massacre of the Innocents (c. 1565-1567; Royal Collection, Windsor Castle) or Somocista guards in the illustration for the Nicaraguan Gospel in Solentiname (1980s). These examples of actualizing Matthean narratives highlight one of the most significant contributions of reception history: making us aware of the extent to which interpreters’ circumstances and the questions those circumstances provoke, as well as inherited patterns of reading, contribute to textual meaning. The same holds for critical biblical scholarship, which reception history encourages us to view, not primarily as foundational to textual meaning, but as a particular strand in the late reception history of Matthew’s text, not always aware of the extent to which it stands on the shoulders of its predecessors.




[1] John Ruskin, St. Mark’s Rest (Rahway and New York: The Mershon Company, 1904), 139-140.

[2] Dan Cohn-Sherbok, The Crucified Jew (London: HarperCollins, 1992), 19.

[3] Ulrich Luz, Matthew, trans. J.E. Crouch, 3 vols., Hermeneia (Minneapolis: Fortress, 2001–2007).

[4] For a helpful survey of different approaches and specific worked examples, see Emma England and William John Lyons, eds., Reception History and Biblical Studies: Theory and Practice, Critical Perspectives on the Reception and Influence of the Bible (London and New York: Bloomsbury T. & T. Clark, 2015).

[5] Dale C. Allison, “Matthew and the History of Its Interpretation,” ExpTim 120/1 (2008): 5.

[6] Pier Paolo Pasolini, My Cinema, eds. G. Chiarcossi and R. Chiesi in collaboration with M. D’Agostini (Bologna: Edizioni Cineteca di Bologna and Luce Cinecittà), 74.

[7] Translation from Ante-Nicene Fathers 4: 435.

[8] Quotation from W. Klassen, Judas: Betrayer or Friend of Jesus? (Minneapolis: Fortress, 1996), 7.

[9] See e.g., Mark Allan Powell, What is Narrative Criticism? (London: SPCK, 1993), 51-67; Jeannine K. Brown, The Disciples in Narrative Perspective: The Portrayal and Function of the Matthean Disciples, Academia Biblica (Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2002).

[10] Rachel Nicholls, Walking on the Water: Reading Mt. 14:22-33 in the Light of Its Wirkungsgeschichte, Biblical Interpretation Series 90 (Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2008), 135-44.

[11] See Michael Peppard, “New Testament Imagery in the Earliest Christian Baptistery,” in Dura-Europos: Crossroads of Antiquity, eds. L.R. Brody and G.L. Hoffman (Chestnut Hill: McMullen Museum of Art, Boston College, 2011), 171.

[12] On her story, see e.g., Ian Boxall, “From the Magi to Pilate’s Wife: David Brown, Tradition, and the Reception of Matthew’s Text,” in The Moving Text: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on David Brown and the Bible, eds. C.R. Brewer, G.V. Allen, and D. Kinlaw (London: SCM, 2018), 17-36.  

[13] Quoted in C.J. Probst, Demonizing the Jews: Luther and the Protestant Church in Nazi Germany (Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2012), 32.

[14] Translation from Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, 1st series, 10: 513.

[15] Klassen, Judas: Betrayer or Friend of Jesus? 21.

[16] E.g., Musa W. Dube, “‘Go Therefore and Make Disciples of All Nations’ (Matt 28:19a): A Postcolonial Perspective on Biblical Criticism and Pedagogy,’ in Teaching the Bible: The Discourses and Politics of Biblical Pedagogy, eds. Fernando F. Segovia and Mary Ann Tolbert (New York: Augsburg, 1998), 224-46.

[17] Collected Works of Erasmus 45: Paraphrase on Matthew, trans. D. Simpson; ed. R.D. Sider (Toronto, Buffalo, and London: University of Toronto Press, 2008), 377.

[18] See e.g., Christian K. Kleinbub, Vision and the Visionary in Raphael (University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2011).

[19] Hunt offered his own interpretation of his theme (of which three versions survive): William Holman Hunt, The Triumph of the Innocents (London, 1885).

[20] On actualization, see Judith Kovacs and Christopher Rowland, Revelation: The Apocalypse of Jesus Christ, Blackwell Bible Commentaries (Malden, Oxford, and Carlton: Blackwell, 2004), pp. 7-11

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