By Evert-Jan Vledder

Matthew's Gospel is a witness to conflicting pursuits. The leaders of Israel are a part of the so-called 'retainer class', who pursue their very own pursuits through selling the pursuits of the Roman rulers. Jesus (and the Matthaean community), to the contrary, acts on behalf of the marginalized in society. Jesus demanding situations the underlying values of the leaders who, opposite to what's anticipated, don't forgive and act mercifully. The leaders attempt to unravel the clash negatively through labelling Jesus as possessed by way of the satan. whilst, the clash spirals onward: the Matthaean group is termed to behave within the pursuits of the marginalized. it really is Vledder's designated contribution to Matthaean examine that he brings to mild the underlying dynamics of this clash in a stimulating sociological study.

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138 Jesus' deeds in the past serve as 'transparencies' (reflections) of the community in the present. The transparencies function on different levels. The miracles of Jesus could relate to happenings that the community are still able to experience. 135. Luz, 'Wundergeschichten von Mt 8-9', p. 155. 136. Luz, 'Wundergeschichten von Mt 8-9', p. 156. 137. Cf. Luz, 'Wundergeschichten von Mt 8-9', pp. 156-57; Das Evangelium nach Matthaus 2, p. 66. 138. Luz, 'Wundergeschichten von Mt 8-9', p. 158. 44 Conflict in the Miracle Stories For instance, Mt.

187 This is how it became deviant. Says Saldarini: 183. Cf. Saldarini, The Gospel of Matthew and Jewish-Christian Conflict', pp. 38-41. 184. Saldarini, The Gospel of Matthew and Jewish-Christian Conflict', p. 48. 185. Saldarini, The Gospel of Matthew and Jewish-Christian Conflict', pp. 4950. 186. Saldarini, The Gospel of Matthew and Jewish-Christian Conflict', pp. 5460. 187. Saldarini, The Gospel of Matthew and Jewish-Christian Conflict', p. 54. 52 Conflict in the Miracle Stories At any rate, Matthew's community engages in many of the functions of a deviant association.

Gerhardsson, The Mighty Acts of Jesus according to Matthew, p. 68. 97. Cf. Gerhardsson, The Mighty Acts of Jesus according to Matthew, p. 72. 98. Gerhardsson, The Mighty Acts of Jesus according to Matthew, p. 14. 99. See VanStaden, Compassion—The Essence ofLife, pp. 93-101 for a discussion of the so-called symbolic universe. 100. Gerhardsson, The Mighty Acts of Jesus according to Matthew, pp. 75-77. 36 Conflict in the Miracle Stories I must repeat one point which as far as I can see is of great importance: the adversaries only play a small, casual role in the texts on Jesus' miracles.

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