From beginning to end, the very structure of the Gospel of Matthew emphasizes that Jesus is the Son of God.
At climactic points Jesus is so identified—by Peter, by a Roman centurion, by Jesus himself, and by God the Father. With The Gospel of the Son of God, David Bauer provides a comprehensive introduction to this Gospel that has been so foundational to the Christian church. Arguing that the nature of Matthew itself should provide us with the framework for its study, he presents a holistic inductive approach with a literary, theological, and canonical focus.
In the first section on orientation, Bauer explores issues of genre, interpretive methods, authorship, audience, and literary structure. Then he moves to interpretation, guiding readers through the meaning of sections of the text. Finally, the reflection section synthesizes and develops major theological themes emerging from the interpretation, including Christology, salvation history, eschatology, and discipleship.
While providing a sound basis for the study of Matthew, Bauer goes beyond typical introductory issues to draw out the rich theological vision of the Gospel. His careful scholarship and clear exposition will make this a valuable resource for college and seminary students and pastors.
"The fruit of decades of research and teaching the Gospel according to Matthew, David Bauer's new introduction proves a sure-footed pathway for initiates while providing plenty of food for thought for those who think themselves already well-traveled. This will be the scholarly orientation to Matthew for the next generation."
"David Bauer has labored long in the vineyard known as Matthew's Gospel and knows full well the range of issues and possibilities that this Gospel presents to us. This was the most copied and used Gospel in the earliest church period, which is in part why it is the first Gospel presented in the New Testament. David presents a careful, clear, and concise introduction to this crucial early Christian document. Highly recommended!"
"I highly recommend this introduction to Matthew's Gospel. It is well-informed regarding introductory issues and conversant with a range of Matthean scholarship in multiple languages. Moreover, few scholars could rival Bauer's skill in inductive close reading of the text."
"David Bauer has written an eminently readable and useful introduction to the Gospel of Matthew that covers all the complex matters of background, setting, interpretation, main themes, and theological reflections. It is informed by research, undertakes sober exegesis of the text, and offers genuine insights on how Matthew matters for us today."
"The Gospel of the Son of God is an incredibly rich and comprehensive resource examining the historical, literary, and theological dimensions of Matthew. Bauer proves himself to be a highly knowledgeable, judicious, and insightful guide. There is now no better introduction to the Gospel of Matthew."
"Like a cartographer who knows the terrain, David Bauer maps the Gospel according to Matthew with deftness and clarity, giving both the student and the expert the lay of the land. He covers the ground well, providing an orientation (methods), interpretation (message), and reflection (theology) of the first Gospel. Informed by recent scholarship, Bauer's introduction is accessible and substantive, helpful to the novice and enjoyable for the frequent traveler to Matthew's literary world. Highly recommended."
"This book is a masterful treatment of the Gospel of Matthew. I know of none like it. It will become 'must' reading of interpreters of Matthew. It is carefully written in a style that is accessible to the reader. It reflects a thorough knowledge of the scholarly literature pertaining to Matthew and of the history of its interpretation. Against the background of a treatment of other methods scholars have used to interpret the Gospel, Bauer chooses the inductive approach. . . . A welcome characteristic is that Bauer does not press evidence beyond what it will bear and evaluates alternative attempts to deal with such evidence. . . . In all, Bauer's interpretation of the Gospel of Matthew proves to be both comprehensive and persuasive. Scholars, pastors, and students will read it with profit."
Part I: Orientation
1. Form and Genre
2. Approach and Method
3. Circumstances of Composition
4. Shape of Composition
Part II: Interpretation
5. Interpretation of Matthew 1:1–4:16
6. Interpretation of Matthew 4:17–16:20
7. Interpretation of Matthew 16:21–28:20
Part III: Reflection
8. Jesus: The Christological Titles
9. Jesus: Additional Aspects of Christology
11. Salvation History and Eschatology