What does Matthew 10:3 mean?
ESV: Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus;
NIV: Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus;
NASB: Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus;
CSB: Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus;
NLT: Philip, Bartholomew, Thomas, Matthew (the tax collector), James (son of Alphaeus), Thaddaeus,
KJV: Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus whose surname was Thaddaeus;
NKJV: Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus;
Verse Commentary:
Matthew is listing the Twelve: Jesus' hand-picked group of apostles. The term "apostle" comes from a Greek word meaning someone who is sent out, on behalf of their master, with a certain message or mission. Jesus has given these men His authority to go to the towns and cities of Israel. They are to preach the gospel of the kingdom of heaven while also casting out demons and healing the sick (Matthew 10:1).

Matthew is listing them in pairs of two, perhaps as they were teamed up and sent out by Jesus after His instructions to them were completed. Matthew has already listed the two pairs of brothers: Peter and Andrew, as well as James and John, all fishermen before following Jesus.

Now he lists Philip and Bartholomew. Like Peter and Andrew, Philip was from the town of Bethsaida. Commentators think Bartholomew may also have been known as Nathanael, since Philip is the one who brought Nathanael to meet Jesus and they are listed here together (John 1:44–51). Many people in this era used more than one name.

Matthew next lists himself, along with Thomas. Thomas was also called "Didymus," which means "twin" (John 11:16). He famously became known as "doubting Thomas" because he refused to believe without evidence that Jesus had been resurrected (John 20:24–29). Matthew, in apparent humility, describes himself as the "tax collector" (Matthew 9:9), something Mark and Luke do not mention in their lists.

Little is known about James, the son of Alphaeus. He is only mentioned in the lists of apostles. The James who wrote an epistle included in the New Testament (James 1:1; Galatians 2:9) is a different person. Thaddaeus was likely also known as Judas, the son of James, the name listed in Luke 6:16 and Acts 1:13 instead of Thaddaeus. He is not Judas Iscariot, who will betray Jesus. The betraying Judas is always mentioned last in the lists of the disciples.
Verse Context:
Matthew 10:1–4 lists the twelve apostles, Jesus' core group of hand-picked followers. These men are often collectively referred to as "the Twelve." Jesus gives them His own authority to cast out unclean spirits and to heal every disease and affliction, the same miracles Jesus Himself has been doing up to this point. The apostles include brothers Peter and Andrew, brothers James and John, along with Philip, Bartholomew, Thomas, Matthew, another James, Thaddaeus, Simon, and Judas Iscariot. Judas is the one who will betray Jesus after the Last Supper.
Chapter Summary:
Jesus gives His authority over disease, demons, and even death to His twelve hand-picked apostles. He gives them instructions in preparation both for a short-term trip to the towns of Galilee and their ministry after He has left the earth. First, they will preach His message of the kingdom in Israelite towns as they heal and cast out demons to demonstrate His power. Later, they will suffer great persecution as they represent Him before both Jews and Gentiles. They should not be afraid, though, and trust their Father to be with them and to reward them.
Chapter Context:
Jesus has recently expressed compassion for the people of Israel, who are spiritually lost. Matthew 10 is a record of Jesus' instructions to His twelve core apostles, as He sends them on a short-term trip to the towns of Galilee. He also includes warnings and encouragements about the persecution they will eventually experience. In chapter 11, Jesus will continue to proclaim truth to the people of Israel, leading to further conflict with local religious leaders.
Book Summary:
The Gospel of Matthew clearly shows the influence of its writer's background, and his effort to reach a specific audience. Matthew was one of Jesus' twelve disciples, a Jewish man, and a former tax collector. This profession would have required literacy, and Matthew may have transcribed some of Jesus' words as they were spoken. This book is filled with references to the Old Testament, demonstrating to Israel that Jesus is the Promised One. Matthew also includes many references to coins, likely due to his former profession. Matthew records extensive accounts of Jesus' teaching, more than the other three Gospels.
Accessed 6/16/2024 2:35:17 AM
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