The Interest in Geography in Matthew 2

There are four episodes in Matthew 2 (vv. 1-12, 13-15, 16-18, 19-23), each of which have a different geographical focus when the respective prophecy is cited.

  1. In 2:1-12, attention is given to the Messiah’s birth in “Bethlehem.”
  2. In 2:13-15, attention is given to Jesus coming “out of Egypt.”
  3. In 2:16-18, attention is given to a voice “heard in Ramah.”
  4. In 2:19-23, attention is given to Jesus being “called a Nazarene.”

Though each pericope brings up a different location, they are all in the land of Israel (see this post where I argue that Jesus coming “out of Egypt” was about his exodus from land of Israel, which had become the new Egypt).

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