History of Matthew 18:21-35

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Authorship
The authorship of various books throughout the Bible seems to be a constant question for many, and the authorship of the book of Matthew is no different. No one really knows the person responsible for writing the first gospel of the New Testament for a number of reasons. As Leon Morris points out, the oldest known translation of Matthew is written in Greek, but there is considerable agreement that the disciple Matthew did not know Greek. Additionally, William Hendriksen concludes that since the book of Matthew draws knowledge from the gospels of Mark and John, it does not seem practical that one of Christ's disciples would need these other books as a template. Although the author is not known, A.W. Argyle states that there is general consensus that the entire book of Matthew was written by the same person. Therefore, the parable of forgiveness would have been written by the author of the book of Matthew. There are no hints revealed in the passage as to who the author may have been. There is only a single reference to Peter and Jesus. Although the writer is not known, the authorship of the passage does not in any way affect its meaning.

Date and Provenance
With no absolute author to link the book of Matthew to, the date and origin of the book are hard to determine. Daniel Harrington presents Syria and Palestine as various locations at which the book could have been written. William Barclay mirrors these two locations, but also adds Alexandria, Egypt as a possible place of origin. However, general belief is that the book of Matthew was written somewhere in Palestine. The date of Matthew is a little more concrete because of the references throughout the book to the intact Temple in Jerusalem. Alex Varughese states that since the Temple was destroyed in 70 A.D., the generally accepted date of the book of Matthew is somewhere just prior to the Temple's destruction. The most difficult aspect of the passage for the modern reader to...
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