Matthew the Evangelist

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Matthew the Evangelist (מתי/מתתיהו, "Gift of Yahweh", Standard Hebrew and Tiberian Hebrew: Mattay or Mattithyahu; Septuagint Greek: Ματθαῖος, Matthaios) was, according to Church Fathers, one of the twelve Apostles of Jesus and one of the four Evangelists.

In addition, Matthew was supposed by some to have composed the Gospel of Christ called the Gospel according to the Hebrews.[2]

Contents

Identity

Among the early followers and apostles of Jesus, a Matthew is mentioned in Mt 9:9 and Mt 10:3 as a former tax collector from Capernaum who was called into the circle of the Twelve by Jesus. He is also named among the number of the Twelve, but without identification of his background, in Mk 3:18, Lk 6:15 and Acts 1:13. He is often equated with the figure of Levi, son of Alpheus, also a tax collector, who is mentioned in Mk 2:14 and Lk 5:27.

Early life

Matthew was a first century Galilean (presumably born in Galilee, which was not part of Judea or the Roman Iudaea province) and the son of Alpheus [3] During the Roman occupation (which began in 63 BC with the conquest of Pompey), Matthew collected taxes from the Hebrew people for Herod Antipas, the tetrarch of Galilee. His Tax Office was located in Capernaum. Jews who became rich in such a fashion, were despised and considered outcasts. However, as a tax collector he would have been literate in Aramaic (but probably not Greek or Latin).[4] [5][6]

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