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The Gospel of Matthew in its First-Century Jewish Context 

SB BIB 404 3 Credits*

Course Instructor and Meeting Time:
Instructor: Noel Rabinowitz, Ph. D. This course will be followed according to the student’s own time with a few pre-planned live sessions for any clarifications, questions & answers with Dr. Rabinowitz according to the schedule below starting mid-October 2022 for 12 weeks.

Course Description
A life-changing study of the Gospel of Matthew in its first-century Jewish context, taught from Israel and engaging the physical Land of the Bible

Supplementary Description:
Jesus was given to the world as a Jewish man who was raised in and lived in the Promised Land. In this course the historical, cultural, geographical and theological setting of Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew is explored with a special emphasis on the reversal of the Curse of Exile and the Restoration of Israel. Students will learn to read the Gospel anew through the perspective of a first century lens, deepening and expanding their understanding of Jesus and His Jewish world.

Learning Outcomes:
After completing this course successfully, the student will be able to:

  1. Express a deeper understanding of the Jewishness of Jesus by clarifying biblical passages from a Jewish perspective.
  2. Outline the narrative structure of Matthew’s Gospel and his unique presentation of Jesus as the Messiah-King who had come to redeem the Jewish people from exile. 
  3. Situate Matthew’s Messianic Jewish Community culturally, geographically and theologically in its late-first century Jewish context.
  4. Describe the Gospel of Matthew’s Deuteronomic Metanarrative.
  5. Explain Matthew’s use of geography to demonstrate that the eschatological restoration of Israel has begun.
  6. Articulate the themes of Land, Purity, Torah, and Temple in Matthew’s Gospel.
  7. Evaluate the function of miracles stories and parables in the Gospel’s larger context.
  8. Summarize Matthew’s presentation of Jesus as the Davidic Messiah-King and the implications this has for the spiritual and territorial restoration of Israel. 
  9. Identify the apocalyptic and eschatological elements of the Gospel of Matthew and assess their function within the narrative.
  10. Transpose and apply insights from a study of Matthew to the present era and the wider community of believers.

Required Texts:
Daniel M. Gurtner, Joel Willitts and Richard A. Burridge. Jesus, Matthew’s Gospel and Early Christianity. New York: Bloomsbury, 2013.

David L. Turner. Matthew: ECNT. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2008.

Preferred Bible Version

Recommended Textbook:
Satellite Bible Atlas, 2nd ed.  William Schlegel, 2016.

Weekly quizzes, reading assignments and forum participation. 

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*Jerusalem Seminary (JS) courses are engagingly academic and taught by experts in their field living in Israel. While JS’ courses are not externally accredited, they can be taken for internal JS credit. Any internal JS credit will accrue and at a later time would hopefully, through articulation agreements and accreditation bodies, receive official accreditation; a process that JS is beginning.

Course Content

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