Author : Douglas Sean O'Donnell
Publisher : Wipf and Stock Publishers
Release : 2021-08-26
ISBN-13 : 172529592X
Page : 310 pages
Rating : 4.5/5 from 92X voters
The concept of "faith" holds a central position in New Testament and early Christian thought, yet this concept has not received the careful attention it deserves in the Synoptic Gospels. The present study offers a comprehensive analysis of "faith" as a key motif in the Gospel of Matthew, where it plays a major role in communicating this Gospel's vision for how readers should respond to the person and message of Jesus. The argument propounded is that Matthew's unique narrative portrayal of the Canaanite woman's faith (15:21-28) is used for pedagogical purposes, namely, that by comparing and contrasting her "great faith" with those characters expressing "no faith" and "little faith," Matthew uses Jesus's quantitative πίστ-terms to teach on the nature of true faith. She embodies Matthew's theological vision of faith! Even though she is a gentile outsider/enemy, she comprehends the universal scope and abundant blessings of Jesus's mission. Moreover, she acknowledges Jesus's messianic identity, correctly perceiving him to be both David's royal heir and David's Lord. Finally, based on who she perceives Jesus to be and the purpose of his mission, she demonstrates faith as trust manifested in action.