"11:2-6 These verses contain a school of debate, probably of post-resurrection origin, over the nature of Jesus' mission, held between disciples of JBap and Christians (Brown et al., p. 652).
11:2 'the works of the Messiah'/ striking phrase created by Matthew turns the debate into one of Messiahship, while it originally might have been one of whether or not he was a divine prophet.
11:3 "John the Baptist had already, on several occasions, declared that Jesus was the Messias. (John i). He could not then doubt of it himself, but sent his disciples to take away their doubt. (Witham)" (Haydock, MT 11:3).
11:5-6 Jesus' response fulfills (and is taken from) the passages of Isaiah.
11:7-19 While Jesus rebukes John, he also reminds all of the greatness of John the Baptist's function.
11:9-10 Common Jewish belief held that there had been no prophet since Malachi, but the coming of a new prophet was eagerly awaited. Because Mal 3:1 & Ex 23:20 both indicate that this prophet was the messenger who would proceed the one who would bring the final age.
11:12 'violent ones take it by a force'/ a puzzling saying over which meaning is disputed. Oddly enough, if you read it with modern eyes, it sounds as if Jesus is talking to us.
11:13 Matthew inverts the normal order and says "prophets and the law" emphasizing the important of the prophetic passages of the law (and "its fulfillment in the teaching of Jesus and to the transitory nature of some of its commandments" (Catholic Book Publishing).
11:14-15 While there were multiple (confusing) notations on these verses, this is the one I found most understandable: "John is here styled Elias, not in the same manner as those who taught the transmigration of souls; but the meaning is, that the precursor came in the spirit and virtue of Elias, and had the same fulness of the Holy Ghost...(St. Jerome in St. Thomas Aquinas)" Haydock, 11:14.
11:16-19 Difficult parable with much dispute about its meaning.
11:19 'Wisdom is vindicated by her works' is sometimes translated as 'Wisdom is justified by her children'
11:21 Tyre, Sidon: pagan cities denounced for wickedness in OT.
11:25-26 This same sentiment (words similar, probably drawn from Q) is also expressed in Lk 10:21-22.
11:27 This verse is vital and is expressed in Lk also. If authentic, as it may well be, it would give us a most important clue to Jesus' self-understanding as absolute Son of the absolute Father (Brown et al., p.653).
11:28-29 These verses are only in Matthew in NT, and are similar to Sirach 51:23-26.
11:29 Jesus clearly states to take the yoke of following his word instead of the yoke of the law.
Jennifer Becker Landsberger
Who am I? Freelance writer (magazines, websites, & copywriting), Catholic, military wife, and Mensan. Double Bachelor's in History & Psychology.
Witnessing by charity and love are above all. Studying the Bible and beyond helps me on this quest. Feel free to join my walk into the Bible.
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~~~Prayer before Writing-
Oh creator of the universe, who has set the stars in the heavens and causes the sun to rise and set, shed the light of your wisdom into the darkness of my mind. Fill my thoughts with a loving knowledge of you, that I may bring you like to others. Just as you can make even babies speak your truth, instruct my tongue and guide my pen to convey the wonderful glory of the Gospel. Make my intellect sharp, my memory clear, and my words eloquent, so that I may faithfully interpret the mysteries what you have revealed.
To my readers & fellow writers,
1. I will pray that God's grace helps illuminate all of our interactions- both those of simple reading and more active conversations.
2. I will communicate with you respectfully and civilly. These are (rightly) issues which we feel passionate about. But even in disagreements, I will respect you fellow "seekers of truth."
3. I will not fall into negative behavior or words, such as insinuations, exaggerations, blames, or personal attacks. I respectfully ask you to do the same.
4. I will pray we will all find the truth and strive to fulfill the two greatest commandments: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these." (Mark 12:30-31)
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Sites I Recommend
Biblical Evidence for Catholicism by Dave Armstrong