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The (Im)Polite Jesus

An Analysis of Jesus’ Verbal Rudeness in Matthew’s Gospel


Carlos Olivares

This book is an informed, focused, deep, and creative analysis of the topic of (im)politeness applied to Jesus in Matthew’s Gospel, with in-depth conclusions and analysis about the Matthean Jesus’ (im)politeness. This study utilizes innovative methodological approaches regarding the analysis and interpretation of the subject in Matthew’s Gospel, finding similarities with the language and (im)polite engagements of other first-century Greco-Roman characters and the Matthean Jesus in similar contexts.

The (Im)Polite Jesus would make an excellent addition for studies on Matthew’s Gospel or courses focused on biblical studies, biblical literature, biblical hermeneutics, methodologies, and in discussions about exposing interpreters’ cultural biases when addressing the topic of (im)politeness.

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Chapter One: Initial Considerations Regarding Jesus’ (Im)Politeness


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Initial Considerations Regarding Jesus’ (Im)Politeness


As indicated in the introduction, in this work I use the term (im)politeness not in the sense of social manners, but as a description of verbal violence, insolent language, contempt and sarcasm. Bearing in mind this meaning, although there are no studies regarding the topic of (im)politeness in the Gospel of Matthew, one can find a number of significant biblical and historical studies dealing exclusively with this theme. These examples, however, instead of forming an extensive study of the subject, illustrate the need for of a deeper and possibly broader analysis of this topic. In this first chapter I argue for the necessity of such a study, especially in Matthew’s Gospel, in light of the different contributions made by scholars regarding the subject of (im)politeness in biblical and ancient texts generally.

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