Date of Award

Fall 2007

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Dempsey, Deirdre

Second Advisor

Sullivan, Kevin

Third Advisor

Kurz, William


The remote cause of this dissertation was a poorly written paper for a Romans seminar led by Dr. Carol Stockhausen in the Spring of 2002. In her comments below the bright red B at the end of my paper, Dr. Stockhausen remarked that the only reason the grade was not lower was that she charitably assumed I had completely misunderstood the assignment. This prompted a quest to understand Dr. Stockhausen's work and eventually led me to read her dissertation, Moses' Veil and the Glory of the New Covenant: The Exegetical Substructure of II Car. 3, 1-4, 6. The central insight of that work is in a certain respect simple, but extremely helpful: Paul interprets one biblical text by connecting it to another, and to recover Paul's interpretation of those texts, we must retrace the links he saw (or created) between them. My next paper was an application of Dr. Stockhausen's method to Romans I I, with gratifying results. That fall I participated in a seminar on the Gospel of Matthew led by Dr. Julian Hills. In a series of three papers, I explored the possibility of applying Dr. Stockhausen's approach to a non-Pauline, narrative text. In the course of my research, I became aware that Matthew has taken a back seat in modern academic research: Luke is interesting because of his connection to Acts, Mark is interesting because he is earliest, and John is generally regarded as the most theologically profound of the gospels, but Matthew has no particular point in his favor. Indeed, one of his most distinguishing features, the frequent explicit citation of Scripture, is a favorite whipping boy among the commentators. Most literature on Matthew's use of Scripture consists either of severe criticism or awkward excuses for its defects. At the same time, my work on the connections between Matthew's citations led me increasingly to respect for the thoughtful way he engaged the biblical text. Respect gave way to wonder as I found that Matthew was in fact teaching me about Scripture, and wonder in turn yielded to joy as I contemplated the beauty of Matthew's vision. Eventually I did find scholarship that points to the good in Matthew's use of Scripture, especially the work of Dale C. Allison, but it still seemed that my own work had something to offer the academic community in presenting the scope and the unity of Matthew's network of biblical citations and allusions. So was conceived the goal of this dissertation: without excuses for defects, to expose something of the grandeur of Matthew's use of Scripture by research into the unity between his various biblical citations and allusions...



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