Sending the Twelve: Conduct on the Road

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In this segment of the LOY commentary David Bivin and Joshua Tilton consider the command to avoid Gentiles and Samaritans and the prohibitions against bringing travel gear for the apostles' journey.

Matt. 10:5b-10; Mark 6:8-9; Luke 9:3; 10:4

(Huck 58, 139; Aland 99, 142, 177; Crook 104-106, 162, 199)[1]

Revised: 13-July-2017

אֶל דֶּרֶךְ הַגּוֹיִם אַל תֵּלְכוּ וּלְעִיר הַשֹּׁמְרֹנִים אַל תִּכָּנְסוּ אֶלָּא לְכוּ לַצּאֹן הָאֹבְדוֹת שֶׁלְבֵית יִשְׂרָאֵל אַל תִּשְׂאוּ כְּלוּם לַדֶּרֶךְ לֹא מַקֵּל וְלֹא תַּרְמִיל וְלֹא לֶחֶם וְלֹא כֶּסֶף וְלֹא מִנְעָלִים וְלֹא שְׁנֵי חֲלוּקוֹת וְאִישׁ בַּדֶּרֶךְ אַל תִּשְׁאֲלוּ בִּשְׁלוֹמוֹ

“Don’t go to the Gentiles or the Samaritans. Instead, go to the lost sheep who belong to the people of Israel. Don’t take along gear for your mission, not even a walking stick, or a pack, or food, or money, or shoes, or extra clothes. And don’t greet anyone on the road.[2]










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Story Placement

The Conduct on the Road pericope consists of a series of prohibitions that set limits on whom the apostles are to visit and what they are to bring on their mission. These instructions form an important piece of a larger literary complex that we refer to as the “Mission of the Twelve.”

We have placed Jesus’ instructions describing how the apostles were to conduct themselves on their mission immediately after “The Harvest Is Plentiful” and “A Flock Among Wolves” sayings. In what way the apostles resemble a flock among wolves is made clear in the Conduct on the Road pericope. The apostles will go with neither provision nor protection for their journey. Like sheep, they will be defenseless, having to rely on God for all their needs.

To see an overview of the entire “Mission of the Twelve” complex, click here.



Click here to view the Map of the Conjectured Hebrew Life of Yeshua.


Conjectured Stages of Transmission

121cThe Conduct on the Road pericope is attested in four versions: one each in Matthew and Mark, and two in Luke. We believe the double attestation in Luke is due to Luke’s use of multiple sources: the version in Luke 9 is based on the First Reconstruction (FR), whereas the version in Luke 10 is based on the Anthology (Anth.). Mark mainly copied the FR version from Luke, although Mark was also aware of Luke 10:4 (see L73). The version in Matthew is a combination of Mark and Anth. The instructions in Matt. 10:5b-8 are unique to Matthew, and the question arises whether Luke omitted this section only for it to be reinserted when Matthew copied Anth., or whether Matthew composed these verses on his own. We will examine this issue in the Comment section below.

Crucial Issues

  1. Why would Jesus forbid his apostles to go to Gentiles and Samaritans?
  2. Would Jesus have used a pejorative term or racial slur when referring to Samaritans?
  3. Why were the apostles forbidden to take provisions for their journey?
  4. Why does Mark’s version permit a staff, but the versions in Luke and Matthew prohibit a staff?


L51 καὶ εἶπεν πρὸς αὐτούς (Luke 9:3). “And he said to them” is unnecessary in HR since we are in the middle of Jesus’ discourse. We note, however, that καὶ εἶπεν πρὸς αὐτούς is precisely the phrase we used for GR in “The Harvest Is Plentiful” and “A Flock Among Wolves,” L40-41. Perhaps the First Reconstructor (the of creator of FR) copied this phrase from Anth., omitted “The Harvest is Plentiful” and “A Flock Among Wolves” sayings, and resumed with the prohibition of provisions for the road. Mark’s καὶ παρήγγειλεν αὐτοῖς (“And he commanded them”; Mark 6:8) could be an intensification of “And he said to them” in Luke 9:3, while Matthew’s παραγγείλας αὐτοῖς λέγων (“commanding them saying”) is an adaptation of Mark’s wording for Matthew’s context.

L52-62 Here Matthew includes material that does not appear in the Markan parallel or in either of Luke’s versions of the Conduct on the Road pericope. Did the author of Matthew import this material from some other context, or did he restore it to its proper place by copying Anth.? Or must each of the sayings in this section be evaluated on its individual merits? Our answer to the latter question is “Yes.” Although grouped together by the author of Matthew in this section, not all the sayings are of a uniform character. Some show a Hebraic quality, while others look distinctively Matthean.

The first saying (Matt. 10:5b-6; L52-55), which sets limitations on where the apostles were permitted to travel, is easily reconstructed in Hebrew and is so counter to the author of Matthew’s theological agenda that its derivation from Anth. seems the likeliest explanation. We will examine this saying in much greater detail in Comments to L52, L53, L54 and L55.

The second saying (Matt. 10:7-8a; L56-61), on the other hand, lacks Hebraic word order and appears to have been composed in Greek. Much of the content in Matt. 10:7-8a, moreover, is paralleled in the instructions in Luke 10:9 about how the apostles are to behave when they enter a town:

Matthew 10:7-8a Luke 10:9
πορευόμενοι δὲ κηρύσσετε λέγοντες ἤγγικεν ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν. ἀσθενοῦντας θεραπεύετε, νεκροὺς ἐγείρετε, λεπροὺς καθαρίζετε, δαιμόνια ἐκβάλλετε καὶ θεραπεύετε τοὺς ἐν αὐτῇ ἀσθενεῖς καὶ λέγετε αὐτοῖς· ἤγγικεν ἐφ᾿ ὑμᾶς ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ.
And going, proclaim, saying, “The Kingdom of Heaven has come near.” Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. And heal the sick in it and say to them, “The Kingdom of God has come near to you.”

It seems, therefore, that in Matt. 10:7-8a the author of Matthew paraphrased and elaborated the contents of Luke 10:9, which he found in his non-Markan source (Anth.), and relocated it to this new position.

The third saying, “Freely you received, freely you must give” (Matt. 10:8b; L62), is so short—only four words in Greek—that it is hard to assess whether it is Hebraic. Although reconstruction seems possible (see below, Comment to L62), and despite parallels to this saying in ancient Jewish sources,[3] it is difficult to reconcile “Freely you received, etc.” either with “the worker is worthy of his food/wage,” a saying that occurs both in Matt. 10:10 and Luke 10:7, or with the assumption underlying the entire Conduct in Town pericope, that the apostles were to be sustained by the hospitality of those to whom they were sent. Given that “the worker is worthy of his food/wage” is well attested in early sources (Matt. 10:10; Luke 10:7; 1 Tim. 5:18; Did. 13:2), and that Paul, explicitly citing a teaching of “the Lord,”[4] justified the right of apostles to receive sustenance from the communities they served in the course of their mission (1 Cor. 9:14), it appears that the saying in Matt. 10:8b was inserted here in order to ameliorate abuses by itinerant teachers who took advantage of the communities for which the Gospel of Matthew was written.[5] This conclusion might explain why the author of Matthew changed “Do not take” to “Do not acquire” in Matt. 10:9 (see below, Comment to L63) and why he limited the scope of “the worker is worthy” saying to τροφή (trofē, “food,” “provision”; Matt. 10:10) instead of μισθός (misthos, “wage,” “hire”; Luke 10:7).[6] That the Matthean communities were troubled by itinerant teachers may be hinted at in other passages such as Matt. 7:15 and Matt. 24:11. The Didache, which shows many affinities with the Gospel of Matthew, also reacts to the problem of itinerant teachers who strain the resources of the community, and like Matthew its version of “the worker is worthy” saying limits the reward to “food” (Did. 13:2).[7]

We conclude, therefore, that in this section of unique Matthean material only the prohibition against going to the Gentiles and the command to go only to “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” were copied directly from Anth. The rest of the material in this unique Matthean section of the Conduct on the Road pericope is the product of Matthew’s editorial activity.

L52 אֶל דֶּרֶךְ הַגּוֹיִם אַל תֵּלְכוּ (HR). Some scholars have questioned the authenticity of the prohibition against going to the Gentiles.[8] According to Beare, the initial reluctance of the early believers to share the Gospel with Gentiles and Samaritans is proof that the apostles required no such prohibition,[9] and therefore Beare supposed that Matt. 10:5b was fabricated by Jewish Christians who opposed the mission to the Gentiles. Nolland, on the other hand, concluded that “The role of the negative statements can only be apologetic,” in other words, the prohibition against going to the Gentiles was created in order to show that the Jews had been given the right of first refusal, thus proving God’s faithfulness to Israel.[10]

But despite assertions that “Jesus can hardly be thought of as addressing disciples who are eager to go to the Gentiles!”[11] it does not seem unreasonable that Jesus would give his apostles instructions about whom they ought (and ought not) to visit when sending them out on their mission. In addition, Matt. 10:5 forms a Hebraic-looking parallelism forbidding the apostles to go to the Gentiles or to the Samaritans. Moreover, it is difficult to suppose that the author of Matthew composed these instructions himself, since they are incompatible with his Gentile-inclusive attitude.[12] Where Matthew does have negative statements about Gentiles,[13] they are best understood as having been copied from a pre-synoptic source (Anth.).

We have reconstructed εἰς ὁδὸν (eis hodon, “into [the] way”) in Matt. 10:5b as אֶל דֶּרֶךְ (’el derech), which can be translated variously as “in the road” or “toward,” as the following example from rabbinic literature demonstrates:

כגון סוחר אחד שקנה פרה לקנין והיה ביתו אצל בית השחיטה אמר אם אני מוליך אותה אל דרך ביתי היא רואה את בית השחיטה ואת הדמים והיא בורחת אלא הריני מוליכה אל דרך אחרת

…it is like a certain merchant who bought a cow to keep as his possession, but his house was near a slaughterhouse so he said, “If I lead the cow toward [אל דרך] my house it will see the slaughterhouse and the blood and she will run away, so therefore I’m leading it by a different path [אל דרך אחרת].” (Exod. Rab. 20:17)

Further examples of אֶל דֶּרֶךְ with the meaning “toward” or “in the direction of” are found in Judg. 20:42 and 1 Sam. 13:17.

In LXX εἰς + ὁδός is the translation of a variety of constructions, including לְדֶרֶךְ + pronominal suffix (e.g., לְדַרְכְּכֶם; “on your way”),[14] לַדֶּרֶךְ (“for the journey”),[15] עַל דֶּרֶךְ (“upon [the] road”),[16] and בְּדֶרֶךְ or בַּדֶּרֶךְ (“in a/the road”).[17] The reconstruction that best fits the context of Matt. 10:5b, where εἰς ὁδὸν means “toward,”[18] is אֶל דֶּרֶךְ. In LXX אֶל דֶּרֶךְ is translated with εἰς + ὁδός in Judg. 20:42 and Prov. 7:25.

אַל תֵּלְכוּ (HR). Our reconstruction is strikingly similar to the warning in Jer. 10:2: אֶל דֶּרֶךְ הַגּוֹיִם אַל תִּלְמָדוּ (“The way of the Gentiles do not learn”). In rabbinic literature the phrase דֶּרֶךְ הַגּוֹיִם never occurs except in quotations of Jer. 10:2.[19] Did Jesus intend his prohibition against going to the Gentiles to allude to Jer. 10:2?

L53 וּלְעִיר הַשֹּׁמְרֹנִים אַל תִּכָּנְסוּ (HR). The authenticity of Jesus’ saying about the Samaritans is hard to deny. The prohibition against going to a Samaritan city forms the second part of a Hebraic-style parallelism, and may even reflect a Hebrew construct phrase. In addition, the author of Matthew shows no interest in the status of the Samaritans anywhere else in his Gospel, so it seems highly unlikely that he would have composed this prohibition on his own.[20] Luke, on the other hand, would have strong reasons for omitting this saying: not only does Luke demonstrate a keen interest in the role of the Samaritans (Luke 9:52; 10:33; 17:16; Acts 8:25), but the Sending the Seventy-two pericope (Luke 10:1-16), where we might have expected a parallel to Matt. 10:5b-6, comes shortly after a description of Jesus’ visit to Samaria. Therefore, Luke might have dropped the saying because of the contradiction that would otherwise have been created by Luke’s arrangement of his material.

The probable authenticity of Matt. 10:5b-6 notwithstanding, reconstructing καὶ εἰς πόλιν Σαμαρειτῶν μὴ εἰσέλθητε (“and into a city of Samaritans do not enter”) in Hebrew poses not only a linguistic challenge, but also a theological quandary. Although πόλιν Σαμαρειτῶν (polin Samareitōn, “city of Samaritans”) looks like it could be the translation of the construct phrase עִיר הַשֹּׁמְרֹנִים (‘ir haShomronim, “city of the Samaritans”),[21] there is very little evidence that the term שֹׁמְרֹנִי (shomroni, “Samaritan”) was used in Hebrew during the late Second Temple period.[22] To the contrary, Josephus explicitly states otherwise in the following text:

…οἱ κατὰ μὲν τὴν Ἑβραίων γλῶτταν Χουθαῖοι, κατὰ δὲ τὴν Ἑλλήνων Σαμαρεῖται….

…those who are called Chūthaioi (Cuthim) in the Hebrew tongue, and Samareitai (Samaritans) by the Greeks…. (Ant. 9:290; Loeb)[23]

A third-century C.E. coin minted in Neapolis (modern Nablus) depicts Mount Gerizim with a colonnade and stairway leading up to a temple of Zeus built ca. 130 C.E. by the emperor Hadrian. To the right of the temple on a higher elevation is another structure that some scholars have identified as an altar or a synagogue of the Samaritans. Image courtesy of the Classical Numismatic Group.

A third-century C.E. coin minted in Neapolis (modern Nablus) depicts Mount Gerizim with a colonnade and stairway leading up to a temple of Zeus built ca. 130 C.E. by Emperor Hadrian. To the right of the temple on a higher elevation is another structure that some scholars have identified as an altar or a synagogue of the Samaritans. Image courtesy of the Classical Numismatic Group.

Josephus’ testimony appears to indicate that the gentilic שֹׁמְרֹנִי was not used in first-century Hebrew to refer to Samaritans.[24] This assertion is supported by the fact that Samaritans are exclusively referred to by the term כּוּתִים (kūtim, “Cutheans”) in the Mishnah, Tosefta, the early halachic midrashim, and in the Jerusalem and Babylonian Talmuds, while the term שֹׁמְרֹנִי appears only once in MT (2 Kgs. 17:29), and never in DSS, Hebrew fragments of Ben Sira, or in any but the latest of rabbinic sources.[25] Based on Josephus’ testimony and rabbinic usage, we expect Jesus to have said, וּלְעִיר הַכּוּתִים אַל תִּכָּנְסוּ (“and into a city of the kūtim do not enter”).

But supposing that Jesus referred to Samaritans as Kutim is theologically unpalatable, since the term כּוּתִי was a racial slur.[26] Ancient Jews used the term כּוּתִי when referring to Samaritans because it emphasized the Samaritans’ foreign descent[27] while simultaneously denying the name Israel to the Samaritans (cf. m. Kid. 4:3). This dual function of the term כּוּתִי is demonstrated in a backhanded compliment paid to the Samaritans in rabbinic literature:

רבן שמעון בן גמליאל או′ כל מצוה שהחזיקו בה כותים הרבה מדקדקין בה יותר מישראל

Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel said, “With respect to all the commandments that the Cutheans accept, they are more meticulous about their observance than an Israelite.” (t. Pes. 2:2; Vienna MS)[28]

Even Josephus, though writing in Greek, frequently used the term Χουθαῖος (Chouthaios, a transliteration of כּוּתִי) to refer to Samaritans.[29] Just as with the term כּוּתִי in rabbinic literature, Josephus used Χουθαῖος to emphasize the foreignness of the Samaritans and their exclusion from the people of Israel.

Jacob ben Aaron, Samaritan high priest, holding an ancient Samaritan Torah Scroll. Photographed in the late 1800s. A description of this image is found in Jesse Lyman Hurlbut, Traveling in the Holy Land Through the Stereoscope (New York: Underwood & Underwood, 1900), 137-139. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Jacob ben Aaron, Samaritan high priest (1861-1916), holding an ancient Samaritan Torah scroll. Photographed in the late 1800s. A description of this image is found in Jesse Lyman Hurlbut, Traveling in the Holy Land Through the Stereoscope (New York: Underwood & Underwood, 1900), 137-139. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

The rivalry between Jews and Samaritans originated in the Persian period when some of the Jews returning to their ancestral homeland from exile in Babylon refused to recognize the Samaritan community as fully Israelite.[30] This happened because among certain Jews in Babylon there had developed an ideology of “the holy seed” (זֶרַע הַקֹּדֶשׁ; zera‘ haqodesh; Ezra 9:2), according to which only the Israelites who had gone into exile in Babylon, referred to as “the congregation of the exile” (קְהַל הַגּוֹלָה; qehal hagōlāh; Ezra 10:8), were the true Israel.[31] Israelites who had either remained in the land or who descended from the northern tribes were excluded from “the holy seed,” and were regarded as foreigners.[32]

For their part, although Samaritans would not have considered themselves Jews since they did not belong to the tribe of Judah, they did regard themselves as descendants of the northern tribes,[33] and accordingly referred to themselves as Israelites.[34] The rivalry between the two communities, however, was not absolute, since not all those who returned from the Babylonian exile espoused the “holy seed” ideology,[35] as can be seen from the reports of high priests in Jerusalem who married women who did not belong to “the congregation of the exile,” including Samaritans (Ezra 10:18; Neh. 13:28; Jos., Ant. 11:322).[36] Nevertheless, the “holy seed” ideology of Ezra and Nehemiah prevailed in the Jewish community, in large part because, as the Persian-appointed governor of Yehud (i.e., Judah), Nehemiah had the political authority to enforce his view within the province he governed.

As a result, most Jews came to regard the Samaritans as foreigners (cf. Sir. 50:25-26), and hostile incidents between Jews and Samaritans are reported in the writings of Josephus and in rabbinic sources (cf. J.W. 2:232-235; Ant. 18:30; m. Rosh Hash. 2:2).[37] The Samaritan temple on Mount Gerizim was a point of contention between the two communities (John 4:20; Jos., Ant. 13:74; m. Ned. 3:10), and the destruction of the Samaritan temple by John Hyrcanus (Ant. 13:275-277)[38] certainly did nothing to improve relations, but the dispute over the right place of worship was a peripheral issue. The main source of contention concerned who had the right to be called Israel.

The saying in Matt. 10:5b-6 certainly denies the Samaritans any belonging to the house of Israel,[39] which to modern sensibilities is troubling enough,[40] but would Jesus, who taught his disciples not to call anyone רֵיקָה (rēqāh, “raca,” “fool”; cf. Matt. 5:22), have used an ethnically derogatory term? On the other hand, does it not seem overly convenient to suppose that Jesus would have used a less racially biased term like שֹׁמְרֹנִי, when such a usage is practically unprecedented in Second Temple Jewish literature? These questions cannot be answered with absolute certainty. On balance, however, probability favors the conclusion that Jesus referred to the Samaritans as שֹׁמְרֹנִים (shomronim) rather than כּוּתִים (kūtim).

In the first place, from the perspective of Lindsey’s hypothesis it is much simpler to suppose that Σαμαρειτῶν (Samareitōn, “of [the] Samaritans”) in Matt. 10:5 reflects הַשֹּׁמְרֹנִים (hashomronim, “the Samaritans”) in the conjectured Hebrew Ur-text than it is to suppose that the Hebrew Ur-text read הַכּוּתִים (haKūtim, “the Cutheans”).[41] Lindsey believed that the Greek translator of the Hebrew Life of Yeshua employed such a highly literal style of translation that even after two or three subsequent stages of transmission the original Hebrew text can still be reconstructed from the canonical Greek texts. Supposing that the Greek translator wrote Σαμαρειτῶν when the Hebrew text before him read הַכּוּתִים requires us to assume that the Greek translator departed from his accustomed literal translational style, perhaps for the sake of his Greek-speaking audience who might not be familiar with the term “Cuthean,” even though Josephus, who wrote in a highly polished classical Greek style, found no difficulty in rendering כּוּתִי as Χουθαῖος (Chouthaios, “Cuthean”) for his Greek readers. Why would we assume that the Greek translator of the Hebrew Life of Yeshua adopted a more polished Greek style than Josephus?[42]

Second, the practically unattested use of שֹׁמְרֹנִי in Second Temple Jewish literature is misleading if it is taken as an argument in favor of supposing that Jesus referred to Samaritans as “Cutheans.” The fact is, due to the paucity of Jewish sources on Samaritans from the Second Temple period, there is no way to judge what terms Jews in Jesus’ day normally used when referring to Samaritans. Neither “Samaritan” nor “Cuthean” is attested in DSS, Hebrew manuscripts of Ben Sira, Megillat Ta‘anit, the Pseudepigrapha or the works of Philo. It is not until after the destruction of the Temple, in the writings of Josephus, that we encounter the term “Cuthean” as applied to the Samaritans. But even Josephus, a Jerusalem priest and descendant of the Hasmoneans who prized purity of lineage and who expressed anti-Samaritan sentiments, used both the terms “Samaritan” and “Cuthean.” Despite his explanation that “Cuthean” was the Hebrew term for “Samaritan,” this does not prove that שֹׁמְרֹנִי was not also used in Hebrew in the first century. Indeed there is some indirect evidence that שֹׁמְרֹנִי was in continuous use from the Second Temple period onward, side by side with the term כּוּתִי. This evidence comes a) from the reappearance of the term שֹׁמְרֹנִי in some late rabbinic works, and b) from the Samaritans’ self-designation as שָׁמְרִים (shomerim, “keepers [of the Torah]”),[43] evidently a twist on the name שֹׁמְרֹנִים (Shomronim, “Samaritans”), a name that was probably developed to counter the negative connotations of “Samaritan.”[44]

Third, it is difficult to imagine that Jesus would call the Samaritans “Cutheans,” an undeniably derogatory term in the context of Jewish-Samaritan relations, since to have done so would have been wholly inconsistent with Jesus’ respectful attitude toward the Samaritans. Despite his opinion that Samaritans are not Israelites, Jesus always treated the Samaritans he encountered with dignity, sensitivity and respect. Admittedly, there is no rule stipulating that Jesus must have been consistent, but there is nothing to justify the assumption that Jesus would have acted in a manner contrary to his established pattern of behavior. For HR we have, therefore, adopted the less offensive עִיר הַשֹּׁמְרֹנִים (‘ir hashomronim, “city of the Samaritans”).

On the reconstruction of εἰσέρχεσθαι with נִכְנַס, see Healing Shimon’s Mother-in-law, Comment to L5, and Sending the Twelve: Conduct in Town, Comment to L100.

L52-53 Jesus’ instructions limit the apostles’ mission not only ethnically, but geographically as well. Since the mission probably took place in the Galilee, which was bordered by Gentile lands to the north and east and Samaria to the south, the command to go neither toward the Gentiles nor the Samaritans would have confined the apostles to the Galilee.[45]

L54 πορεύεσθε δὲ μᾶλλον (GR). Although the text of Vaticanus has an infinitive (πορεύεσθαι; “to go”; Matt. 10:6), we have adopted the imperative form for GR.[46] This decision is not only in agreement with the reading adopted by N-A, but HR here demands an imperative form.

L55 πρὸς τὰ πρόβατα τὰ ἀπολωλότα οἴκου Ἰσραήλ (Matt. 10:6). The phrase “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” is found twice in Matthew (Matt. 10:6; 15:24), but nowhere else in the Synoptic Gospels or NT. However, the imagery of seeking lost sheep as applied to Jesus’ mission is familiar from other synoptic pericopae including the Lost Sheep simile (Matt. 18:12-14; Luke 15:1-7) and Zakkai the Toll Collector (Luke 19:10).[47] It is most unlikely that the author of Matthew would have invented such a statement, given his Gentile-inclusive policy, and it appears that Matthew extensively reworked the story of Jesus and a Canaanite Woman in order to neutralize the impact of Matt. 10:6.[48] Moreover, the use of the name “Israel” is usually indicative of insider speech, such as we would expect from a Jewish speaker addressing fellow Jews,[49] rather than the outsider perspective characteristic of the author of Matthew.

לַצּאֹן הָאֹבְדוֹת שֶׁלְבֵית יִשְׂרָאֵל (HR). It is also quite easy to reconstruct πρὸς τὰ πρόβατα τὰ ἀπολωλότα οἴκου Ἰσραήλ in Hebrew as לַצּאֹן הָאֹבְדוֹת שֶׁלְבֵית יִשְׂרָאֵל. Not only is the word order the same, but the omission of the definite article before οἶκος (oikos, “house”)[50] appears to be a Hebraism reflecting a construct phrase in the conjectured Hebrew Ur-text.[51] We conclude, therefore, that the author of Matthew copied the instructions in Matt. 10:6 from Anth.[52]

Although the phrase “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” does not occur in MT, DSS or rabbinic sources, in Jer. 50:6 we encounter the phrase צֹאן אֹבְדוֹת הָיֻה [הָיוּ] עַמִּי (“My people were lost sheep”). In Choosing the Twelve (Comment to L10-11) we discussed the probability that the appointment of twelve apostles was intimately related to Jesus’ belief in the restoration of the twelve tribes of Israel. This hypothesis would find further support if “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” in Matt. 10:6 alludes to Jer. 50:6 and its immediate context, for in Jer. 50:4-5 the prophet predicts the gathering of the sons of Israel and the sons of Judah together in Zion where there will be a renewal of God’s covenant.[53]

L56 πορευόμενοι δὲ κηρύσσετε λέγοντες (Matt. 10:7). The introduction to the second saying in this unique Matthean section of the Conduct on the Road pericope is not particularly Hebraic. The participle + δέ + imperative + participle construction bears little resemblance to the string of imperatives we would expect in Hebrew. We also note that the combination of κηρύσσειν + λέγειν is quite rare in LXX, occurring only in Exod. 32:5; 36:6; 2 Chr. 36:22 (cf. 1 Esd. 2:1); and Esth. 6:9, 11. The combination of κηρύσσειν + λέγειν in NT is also quite rare, occurring only in Matt. 4:17; 10:7; and Mark 1:7. Although it is not impossible that the opening words of Matt. 10:7 reflect a Hebraic source, there is nothing in L56 to support this hypothesis.

L57 ἤγγικεν ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν (Matt. 10:7). The declaration “The Kingdom of Heaven/God has come near” is found 6xx in NT,[54] but there is not a single instance where all three Synoptic Gospels agree to use this phrase in the same pericope. Matthew places this declaration in the mouth of John the Baptist (Matt. 3:2) without support from either Mark or Luke. Matthew 4:17 and Mark 1:15 describe Jesus as making this declaration in a pericope loosely paralleled in Luke 4:14-15, but the declaration “The Kingdom of God has come near” does not occur there. In Luke’s Sending the Seventy-two pericope Jesus twice instructs his apostles to announce that “The Kingdom of God has come near,” once in the regular course of their mission (Luke 10:9),[55] and again if their message is rejected (Luke 10:11). Although Matthew’s Sending Discourse does not have anything strictly parallel to Luke 10:9 where Jesus gives the apostles instructions about how they are to conduct themselves when entering a town, we believe that Matt. 10:7-8 is an amplified paraphrase of the source behind Luke 10:9 (i.e., Anth.). If we are correct in this supposition, then Matt. 10:7 might come closer to Anthology’s wording than Luke 10:9 in one respect: Matthew’s ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν (hē basileia tōn ouranōn, “the Kingdom of the Heaven”) is more Hebraic than Luke’s ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ (hē basileia tou theou, “the Kingdom of the God”).[56]

L58-62 Matthew 10:8 consists of a series of accusatives, each of which is followed by an imperative: “Sick [persons] heal! Corpses raise! Scale-diseased [persons] purify! Demons put out!” This is precisely the opposite of the word order we would expect to find in Hebrew.[57] The un-Hebraic syntax of Matt. 10:8 is probably due to Matthew’s paraphrasing of the source behind Luke 10:9. Matthew’s paraphrase is amplified—Luke 10:9 only mentions healing the sick—perhaps on the basis of Jesus’ response to John in Yohanan the Immerser’s Question (Matt. 11:5 // Luke 7:22).[58] In his response to John, Jesus notes that scale-diseased persons were being purified and that deceased persons were being raised. The author of Matthew may have added the exorcism of demons to the list of imperatives because although Matt. 10:1 reports that the apostles were given authority to drive out demons, they had not yet been given an explicit command to do so.

We believe Luke 10:9 is closer to the wording of the pre-synoptic source that the author of Matthew paraphrased in Matt. 10:7-8.[59] Not only is Luke 10:9 generally more Hebraic than Matt. 10:7-8, but the progression in Luke 10:9 from miraculous healing to explaining the significance of the miracles (“The Kingdom of God has arrived!”) is more in keeping with Jesus’ usual practice. In Matt. 10:7-8 this order is reversed.

L62 δωρεὰν ἐλάβετε δωρεὰν δότε (Matt. 10:8). This saying, which is unique to Matthew, is in such tension with the larger context—where Jesus instructs the apostles to take no provisions but to accept hospitality from the people they meet in the course of their mission—that we suspect this saying is an editorial insertion by the author of Matthew. Perhaps the author of Matthew inserted this saying in order to curtail abuses of itinerant teachers who were active when Matthew was composing his Gospel.

It is possible that “Freely you received, freely give” is an authentic saying of Jesus that the author of Matthew took from some other context. If its original context has been lost, we can only guess what it is that the addressees received and what it is they are meant to give. A good guess, however, would be Torah instruction. There are numerous rabbinic sources that prohibit making financial gain from the Torah.[60] Compare the conclusion of Matt. 10:8 to the following source:

עשה תורתך בחנם ולא תטול עליה שכר שהמקום נתנה בחנם ואין נוטלין שכר על דברי תורה

Do your [teaching of] Torah gratuitously and accept no remuneration for it; because the Omnipresent gave it gratuitously and one may not take a fee for the [teaching of] words of Torah. (Derech Eretz Zuta 4:3 [58b]; Soncino)

Possible Hebrew reconstructions of δωρεὰν ἐλάβετε δωρεὰν δότε (dōrean elabete dōrean dote, “Freely you took/received, freely give”) are חִנָּם לְקַחְתֶּם חִנָּם תְּנוּ (ḥinām leqaḥtem ḥinām te, “Freely you took, freely give”), which is closer to a BH style, or חִנָּם קִבַּלְתֶּם חִנָּם תְּנוּ (ḥinām qibaltem ḥinām te, “Freely you received, freely give”), which is closer to MH style. In LXX δωρεάν is usually the translation of חִנָּם.‎[61] Either reconstruction seems possible for the Hebrew spoken in the late Second Temple period.

Since we do not believe that the “Freely you received” saying appeared in the context of the Conduct on the Road pericope in pre-synoptic sources, it does not appear in GR or HR.

First-century B.C.E. or first-century C.E. fresco from Villa Farnesina in Rome depicting the itinerant Cynic philosopher Crates (Κράτης, Kratēs) laden with a pack on his shoulders, carrying a staff in his right hand and holding the strap of his luggage in his left, and wearing sandals on his feet. The philosopher is wearing an animal skin cloak that covers a χιτών (chitōn, “tunic”) that reaches to just above his knees. (See Gisela M. A. Richter, The Portraits of the Greeks [3 vols.; London: Phaidon, 1965], 2:186.) Unlike this philosopher, the twelve apostles were sent on their mission without any travel gear whatsoever. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

First-century B.C.E. or first-century C.E. fresco from Villa Farnesina in Rome depicting the itinerant Cynic philosopher Crates (Κράτης, Kratēs) laden with a pack on his shoulders, carrying a staff in his right hand and holding the strap of his luggage in his left, and wearing sandals on his feet. The philosopher is wearing an animal skin cloak that covers a χιτών (chitōn, “tunic”) that reaches to just above his knees. (See Gisela M. A. Richter, The Portraits of the Greeks [3 vols.; London: Phaidon, 1965], 2:186.) Unlike this philosopher, the twelve apostles were sent on their mission without any travel gear whatsoever. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

L63-76 Each of the four versions of the Sending discourse includes a list of items that Jesus forbade his emissaries to take on their mission. The list of prohibited items is mentioned again in Luke 22:35 in the context of Jesus’ final evening with his disciples (the Two Swords pericope). Apart from Luke 10:4 and Luke 22:35, however, none of the lists are identical. As a result, it is extremely difficult to reconstruct the list of forbidden articles as it might have appeared in a pre-synoptic source. Davies and Allison were certainly correct when they stated, “No synoptic theory can readily explain the similarities and differences exhibited by Mt 10.9f. par.”[62] How, then, have we reached our decisions?

First, basing ourselves on Robert Lindsey’s solution to the Synoptic Problem, we attach great significance to the Lukan-Matthean minor agreements against Mark because these minor agreements afford a glimpse of the pre-synoptic source (i.e., the Anthology) that ultimately stands behind the Synoptic Gospels.[63] We regard the agreements between the lists in Luke 9 and Matthew 10 against the list in Mark 6 as an even surer guide for establishing the text of Anth. than the list of prohibited items in Luke 10, even though we believe the version in Luke 10 is based on Anth.[64] This is because it is always possible that when copying Anth. in Luke 10 the author of Luke modified the wording of his source. It must be borne in mind that Luke was every bit as much an author and an editor of sources as he was a copyist. Thus, while the version in Luke 10 may be based on Anth., it is unsafe to assume that it reproduces Anth. verbatim. The minor agreements, on the other hand, provide two independent witnesses to the wording of Anth.

According to Lindsey’s solution to the Synoptic Problem, the Anthology directly influenced each of the Synoptic Gospels, as well as the First Reconstruction (Luke’s second source).

The Lukan-Matthean agreements against Mark reveal the wording of Anth. even in cases when Luke’s source is FR, which we believe to be the case in Luke 9. This is because FR is itself a derivative of Anth. Thus, by correcting Mark on the basis of Anth., the author of Matthew was able to agree with the wording of a Lukan FR pericope in as much as FR preserved the wording of Anth. and Luke preserved the wording of FR. Since the author of Matthew did not have access either to Luke or FR, when Luke and Matthew manage to agree against Mark then, barring some improbable random occurrence, it must be that the Lukan-Matthean agreement reflects the wording of Anth., even when Luke’s source was FR.[65]

After the evidence of the minor agreements, we give preference to Luke when attempting to establish the wording of Anth. This is because Luke was either working directly from Anth. (Luke 10) or from FR, which was based on Anth. (Luke 9). Matthew’s agreement with either of Luke’s versions against Mark is due to Matthew’s dependence on Anth., but the level of Matthew’s editorial activity in the Sending discourse is so great that we are generally suspicious of any details that are unique to Matthew. Matthew’s divergence from Mark in L70 is a case in point. “Silver” is supported by Luke 9, but “gold” does not appear in either of Luke’s versions. We therefore regard “gold” as a Matthean addition. Thus, while we give preference to Luke’s versions, both of Luke’s versions are given equal weight since it seems that neither version is an exact copy of Anth. The minor agreements between Luke 9 and Matt. 10 show that in Luke 10 the author of Luke abbreviated the list of prohibited items, but there is also a point of contact between Luke 10 and Matt. 10. Whereas the list in Luke 9 omits footwear altogether, Luke 10:4 and Matt. 10:10 mention ὑποδήματα (hūpodēmata, “shoes”) against Mark’s σανδάλια (sandalia, “sandals”; Mark 6:9). Thus, we conclude that neither the FR version in Luke 9 nor the Anth. version in Luke 10 represent the complete list.

Mark’s version makes characteristic changes to the list: giving permission to carry a staff, using synonyms (e.g., “sandal” instead of “shoe”), and adding explanatory glosses (e.g., “put on” sandals, “wear” two cloaks). All of these changes we regard as secondary. Although Mark’s list is mainly based on the version in Luke 9, the mention of “sandals” demonstrates Mark’s awareness of the version in Luke 10.

Matthew’s version, as we have noted, is partially corrected on the basis of Anth., but it not only exhibits the influence of Mark, it also reflects the interests and concerns of the author of Matthew (e.g., “Do not acquire,” as opposed to “Do not carry,” in L63). Matthew’s version, therefore, must be assessed with caution. On the one hand, Matthew’s version is highly useful in helping us to decide between Luke’s versions of the Conduct on the Road pericope, for whenever Matthew confirms Luke he does so on the basis of Anth. On the other hand, details that are unique to Matthew must be regarded as highly suspect, for there is a strong likelihood that they are the product of Matthew’s editorial activity.

When weighing the merits of each version, another consideration is also part of the equation: Which version most easily reverts to Hebrew? We consider ease of retroversion to be an indication of greater fidelity to the conjectured Hebrew Life of Yeshua, which ultimately stood behind the pre-synoptic Greek sources of Matthew, Mark and Luke.

L63 μὴ βαστάζετε μηδὲν (GR). Our Greek reconstruction here demonstrates that we do not accept any of the four versions of the list of prohibited items to be a perfect reflection of Anth. To arrive at our reconstruction, our procedure is to reconstruct each witness in Hebrew to test which version appears the most Hebraic.

Mark’s version, with its ἵνα + subjunctive construction, is the least Hebraic,[66] and from the perspective of Lindsey’s hypothesis Mark 6:8 is best explained as a paraphrase of Luke 9:3. Note that Mark’s version is different from all the others in that Mark 6:8 does not record direct speech.

Matthew’s μὴ κτήσησθε (“Do not acquire”) appears to be an adaptation of Matthew’s source in order to make the list of prohibited items agree with the previous verse in which the apostles were instructed to “freely give” (Matt. 10:8).[67] In doing so, the author of Matthew transformed Jesus’ instructions about what items not to take on the mission into a list of items the apostles were not to accept as gifts from the people they visited in the course of their mission.[68]

This leaves us to decide between Luke’s two versions. Both of Luke’s versions have particular points of merit. Compared to the limited set of specifically prohibited items in Luke 10:4, the general prohibition against taking anything for the road in Luke 9:3 seems preferable, since it avoids the impression that items not specifically mentioned were permitted. The version in Luke 9:3 makes it clear that the apostles were not to take anything for the journey, not even the most basic equipment usually expected of travelers. It also appears that the phrase εἰς τὴν ὁδόν (eis tēn hodon, lit., “into the road”) reflects a Hebrew Ur-text that read לַדֶּרֶךְ (laderech, “for the road”),[69] which supports the conclusion that the general prohibition against taking any gear for the mission was part of Anth. The verb βαστάζειν (bastazein, “to carry”), on the other hand, is the particular point of merit in Luke 10:4, since we have identified other instances where the author of Luke copied βαστάζειν from Anth.[70] Our solution is to suppose that both of Luke’s versions have undergone a degree of editorial activity.

We suppose that the author of Luke himself omitted the general prohibition from the Luke 10 version of the Conduct on the Road pericope. The Lukan-Matthean agreements against Mark in Luke 9:3 and Matt. 10:9-10 (i.e., not taking a staff rather than allowing a staff, and not taking silver) indicate that the author of Luke himself abbreviated the list of prohibited items in Luke 10:4, and it seems probable that, given this summarizing procedure, the author of Luke might have omitted the general prohibition as well. Thus, instead of copying a conjectured μὴ βαστάζετε μηδὲν εἰς τὴν ὁδόν μήτε ῥάβδον κ.τ.λ. (“Do not carry anything for the road, neither staff, etc.”) from Anth., the author of Luke may have simply written μὴ βαστάζετε βαλλάντιον κ.τ.λ. (“Do not carry a moneybag, etc.”), thereby retaining βαστάζειν from Anth. while eliminating the general prohibition.

Similarly, we suppose that the First Reconstructor, who also worked on the basis of Anth., decided to edit the wording of his source by exchanging αἴρειν (airein, “to raise,” “to lift”) for βαστάζειν, a change the First Reconstructor made to Anth. on at least one other occasion,[71] and by changing the more Hebraic formulation “Do not take anything” to “Take nothing,” which is more a polished Greek formulation. In Hebrew, which lacks a word for “nothing,”[72] the general prohibition against taking anything for the road would have to be stated along the lines of אַל תִּשְׂאוּ כְּלוּם לַדֶּרֶךְ (“Do not take anything for the road”).[73] If the Greek translator of the Hebrew Life of Yeshua had encountered אַל תִּשְׂאוּ כְּלוּם לַדֶּרֶךְ in his source he may well have translated this sentence as μὴ βαστάζετε μηδὲν εἰς τὴν ὁδόν (lit., “Do not carry nothing into the road”).[74] The LXX translators treated similarly formulated prohibitions in the Hebrew Bible in this manner. For example, in Jonah 3:7, where the Hebrew text reads אַל יִטְעֲמוּ מְאוּמָה (“May they not taste anything”), LXX has μὴ γευσάσθωσαν μηδὲν (“May they not taste nothing”). Similarly, in Gen. 22:12, where the Hebrew text reads וְאַל תַּעַשׂ לוֹ מְאוּמָּה (“And do not do to him anything”), LXX has μηδὲ ποιήσῃς αὐτῷ μηδέν (“And do not do to him nothing”), whereas a more natural Greek phrasing would be μηδὲν ποιεῖτε (“Do nothing”; cf. Ign. Phld. 7:2).[75] Supposing the First Reconstructor encountered μὴ βαστάζετε μηδὲν (lit., “Do not carry nothing”) in Anth., it is easy to imagine that he polished the Greek style of his source by writing μηδὲν αἴρετε (“Take nothing”) instead.

Thus, for GR we accept elements from both of Luke’s versions: we accept the verb βαστάζειν from Luke 10:4, since we know βαστάζειν occurred elsewhere in Anth. and we know that the First Reconstructor replaced βαστάζειν with αἴρειν on at least one other occasion, and from Luke 9:3 we accept the general prohibition against bringing any gear or provisions for the journey.

אַל תִּשְׂאוּ כְּלוּם (HR).[76] Whether we adopted βαστάζετε (Luke 10:4) or αἴρετε (Luke 9:3; cf. Mark 6:8), נָשָׂא would remain the best option for HR, since this is the verb that stands behind most instances of αἴρειν (airein, “to raise,” “to lift”) and βαστάζειν (bastazein, “to carry,” “to bear”) in LXX.[77] Note that the major LXX manuscripts are at variance regarding the translation of נָשָׂא in Job 21:3; whereas Codex Alexandrinus renders נָשָׂא with βαστάζειν, Codex Vaticanus and Codex Sinaiticus translate נָשָׂא with αἴρειν. This example helps us understand why the author of Luke or the First Reconstructor might have changed Anthology’s βαστάζετε to αἴρετε—the two verbs were interchangeable.

Both Lindsey[78] and Delitzsch translated αἴρειν with לָקַח (lāqaḥ, “take”) in Mark 6:8 and Luke 9:3, which is surprising given that out of the 246 instances of αἴρειν in LXX books that correspond to MT, there is only one instance where αἴρειν is the translation of לָקַח (Isa. 53:8). Perhaps they were guided by examples of נָטַל מַקֵּל (nāṭal maqēl, “he took a staff”) and לָקַח מַקֵּל (lāqaḥ maqēl, “he took a staff”) in rabbinic literature (cf., e.g., m. Rosh Hash. 1:9; 2:9; m. Avod. Zar. 3:10).[79]

We noted above that in MH כְּלוּם took the place of מְאוּמָה.

L64 לַדֶּרֶךְ (HR). In Greek, “Take nothing into the road” looks a little odd, but in Hebrew לַדֶּרֶךְ (laderech) can mean “for the road.” In MT, for example, we encounter the phrase צֵידָה לַדֶּרֶךְ (tzēdāh laderech, “provision for the road”; Gen. 42:25; 45:21; Josh. 9:11), which is consistently translated ἐπισιτισμὸν εἰς τὴν ὁδόν (episitismon eis tēn hodon) in LXX. Likewise, in Gen. 45:23 we encounter the following list: שָׁלַח…עֶשֶׂר אֲתֹנֹת נֹשְׂאֹת בָּר וָלֶחֶם וּמָזוֹן לְאָבִיו לַדָּרֶךְ (“[Joseph] sent…ten female donkeys bearing grain and bread and food for his father for the road”). There, too, LXX renders לַדֶּרֶךְ as εἰς ὁδόν.

Compare Jesus’ instruction to take nothing for the road to the following rabbinic comment on the story of Israel’s wilderness wandering:

ומה ת″ל ויסע משה את ישראל אלא להודיע שבחן של ישראל שכיון שאמר להם משה קומו סעו לא אמרו היאך אנו יוצאין למדבר ואין בידינו מחיה לדרך אלא האמינו והלכו אחרי משה

And what is the verse And Moses led Israel [Exod. 15:22] intended to teach other than to make known the excellence of Israel. For when Moses said to them, “Arise! Venture forth!” they did not say, “How can we go out into the desert when there is no provision for the road in our hands?” Instead, they trusted [God] and followed Moses. (Mechilta de-Rabbi Ishmael, Vayassa chpt. 1 [ed. Lauterbach, 1:222])

L65 βαλλάντιον (Luke 10:4). The Lukan-Matthean agreement against Mark to include silver among the prohibited items (L70) establishes that ἀργύριον (argūrion, “silver,” “money”) appeared in the pre-synoptic version of the list. If money was prohibited, would forbidding a moneybag be superfluous? Perhaps βαλλάντιον (ballantion, “moneybag”) in Luke 10:4 was Luke’s substitute for “silver” in Anth. (cf. Luke 9:3). The term βαλλάντιον occurs 4xx in NT, always in the Gospel of Luke.[80] In addition to Luke 10:4, the term βαλλάντιον appears in Luke 22:35-36, which refers back to the instructions given to the apostles in Luke 10:4. The only other instance of βαλλάντιον is in Luke 12:33, which records an unrelated saying about almsgiving.

First-century C.E. Roman fresco from Pompeii depicting coins and a money bag. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

First-century C.E. Roman fresco from Pompeii depicting coins and a moneybag. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Does Luke 22:35 provide independent testimony regarding the list of prohibited items as it appeared in Anth.? It appears not. The items mentioned in Luke 22:35 are identical to those in Luke 10:4, which is suspicious if we are correct that the minor agreements are the most solid evidence we have of Anthology’s contents. Having concluded that the author of Luke edited the list in Luke 10:4, we have to conclude that he also edited the list in Luke 22:35. This conclusion is supported by the relative difficulty we face in reconstructing the Two Swords pericope (Luke 22:35-38) in Hebrew. The language of the Two Swords pericope is unlike the Hebraic-Greek we expect from Anth. It is unlikely that the Two Swords pericope was copied from FR, which is characterized by a more refined Greek style, since in that case we would expect the list of prohibited items in Luke 22:35 to resemble the FR list of prohibited items in Luke 9:3. It therefore appears that the Two Swords pericope was edited to a greater or lesser extent by the author of Luke himself, and that the author of Luke conformed the list of items in Luke 22:35 to that in Luke 10:4.

Since none of the versions in Matthew, Mark or Luke give the full list as it appeared in Anth., it is possible that “moneybag” was one of the prohibited items. However, we have decided to omit βαλλάντιον from GR (and an equivalent from HR) on the supposition that “moneybag” is Luke’s substitution for “silver.”

L66 εἰ μὴ ῥάβδον μόνον (Mark 6:8). Unlike Matthew 10:10 (L76) and Luke 9:3 (L66), Mark’s version grants special permission to take a staff. It appears that in granting this exception the author of Mark has reworked his source.[81] It is possible that Mark’s motivation was to ease the restrictions in order to conform Jesus’ instructions to current practice, but it also is possible that Mark reworked his source in order to make the apostles’ equipment resemble that of the Hebrews when they were released from Egypt.[82] According to Exodus, Moses instructed the children of Israel to eat the Passover in the following manner:

מָתְנֵיכֶם חֲגֻרִים נַעֲלֵיכֶם בְּרַגְלֵיכֶם וּמַקֶּלְכֶם בְּיֶדְכֶם

αἱ ὀσφύες ὑμῶν περιεζωσμέναι, καὶ τὰ ὑποδήματα ἐν τοῖς ποσὶν ὑμῶν, καὶ αἱ βακτηρίαι ἐν ταῖς χερσὶν ὑμῶν

…[with] your loins girded, shoes on your feet, and a staff in your hand. (Exod. 12:11)

Unlike the version in Luke 9, which we regard as the main source upon which Mark 6:8 is based, Mark permits taking a staff (L66), wearing a belt (L71), and putting on sandals (L73). These departures from Luke 9:3 are striking, not only because Luke 9 does not mention either belt or shoes, but also because the three items that are permitted correspond to the instructions in Exod. 12:11.

A first-century Roman fresco depicting an old man, perhaps a philosopher, wrapped in a pallium (the Latin equivalent of the Greek ἱμάτιον and Hebrew טלית), holding a staff, and wearing sandals. (See Richter, The Portraits of the Greeks, 2:244.) The fresco is from the Villa of Boscoreale, located about a mile from Pompeii, which was destroyed by the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 C.E. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

A first-century Roman fresco depicting an old man, perhaps a philosopher, wrapped in a pallium (the Latin equivalent of the Greek ἱμάτιον and Hebrew טלית), holding a staff, and wearing sandals. (See Richter, The Portraits of the Greeks, 2:244.) The fresco is from the Villa of Boscoreale, located about a mile from Pompeii, which was destroyed by the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 C.E. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

If the author of Mark changed his source on the basis of Exod. 12:11, however, then he did so in an unusual manner, assiduously avoiding LXX vocabulary. Whereas LXX has “your loins girded,” Mark has “belt”; instead of βακτηρία (baktēria, “staff”) Mark uses the synonym ῥάβδος (rabdos); instead of ὑπόδημα (hūpodēma, “shoe”) Mark uses σανδάλιον (sandalion, “sandal”).[83] Alluding to a biblical verse while at the same time conspicuously avoiding LXX’s terminology is no obstacle for supposing that the author of Mark really did rewrite Luke 9:3 on the basis of Exod. 12:11. Using synonyms for the words in his base text is one of Mark’s most outstanding editorial features.[84]

If Mark 6:8 was revised in order to allude to Exod. 12:11, the author’s intention was probably to suggest that the apostles’ mission heralded a second redemption patterned after the redemption from Egypt.[85]

μήτε ῥάβδον (GR). In Luke 9:3 and Matt. 10:9-10, Luke and Matthew agree against Mark not only to prohibit a staff, but also to use μήτε/μηδέ (“and not”) against Mark’s simple μή (“not”), which is also the pattern in Luke 10:4.

Commenting on Exod. 12:11, Philo mentions a twofold purpose for travelers carrying a staff:

…a staff is useful to lean on and to drive away poisonous reptiles and other beasts. (QE 1:19; Loeb)

The defensive purpose for carrying staves is also mentioned in a rabbinic source describing which items may be taken on the Sabbath for a journey to bring testimony to the courts about the New Moon:

אִם צוֹדֶה לָהֶם לוֹקְחִין בְּיָדָם מַקְלוֹת

If any lie in wait for them they take staves in their hands. (m. Rosh Hash. 1:9; Danby)

According to Josephus, when the Essenes traveled from place to place they would not carry provisions because they could rely on their fellow Essenes to afford them hospitality and supply all their needs, but one thing they would take with them was arms for protection against thieves (J.W. 2:124-125).

Against this cultural background, Jesus’ refusal to allow the apostles to carry staves stands out in sharp relief. Probably the prohibition against carrying a staff reflects Jesus’ radical trust in God’s providence and protection.[86] The first-century Jewish pietists known as the Hasidim exhibited a similar attitude by refusing to take normal precautions against danger. According to the Hasidim, one should not interrupt prayer even if a poisonous snake wrapped itself around one’s ankle (m. Ber. 5:1).[87] The Hasidim also refrained from killing poisonous snakes on the Sabbath (b. Shab. 121b), trusting that God would protect them from danger, and a story is told about a Hasid who defiantly drank water that had been poisoned by a snake’s venom (y. Avod. Zar. 2:3 [12a]; cf. m. Ter. 8:4). Likewise, a story is told about Hanina ben Dosa who was bitten by a poisonous reptile (עָרוֹד, ‘ārōd) and was miraculously preserved (t. Ber. 3:20; cf. b. Ber. 33a).[88] Rather than Hanina ben Dosa falling ill or dying, it was the snake that died. If, as Philo states, staves were regarded as protection from poisonous reptiles, Jesus’ prohibition against taking a staff would fit well with this Hasidic halachah.[89] It would also help to explain Jesus’ statement upon the apostles’ return: “I have given you authority to trample on snakes…nothing will harm you” (Luke 10:19).[90]

Disdain for normal defensive measures based on radical trust in divine protection is found in a statement recorded in Seder Eliyahu, a work that, according to Safrai, bears the marks of Hasidic influence:[91]

כל תלמיד חכם שעוסק בתורה בכל יום תמיד בשביל להרבות כבוד שמים אין צריך לא חרב ולא חנית ולא רומח ולא כל דבר שהקב″ה משמרו בעצמו ומלאכי השרת עומדין לו סביב סביב וחרבות ביד כולן ומשמרות אתו

Every disciple of the wise who every day without fail busies himself with Torah in order to increase the glory of Heaven needs no sword, no javelin, no spear, nor any other kind of weapon, for the Holy One Himself guards him, and the ministering angels stand around him, all of them with swords in their hands, and they, too, guard him…. (Seder Eliyahu Rabbah 4:3; Braude-Kapstein, 41)

The above saying may hint at the reason for Jesus’ prohibition of a staff, and may be compared to Jesus’ rebuke in Matt. 26:52-53 of the disciple who cut off the ear of the high priest’s servant.

In summary, the Lukan-Matthean agreement to forbid a staff confirms the reading of the pre-synoptic source behind the Gospels, and the prohibition itself is in harmony with other sayings of Jesus about radical trust in God’s provision and protection. Therefore, unlike Beare and Hagner, we regard Mark’s permission to take a staff to be a secondary development.[92]

לֹא מַקֵּל (HR). According to LSJ, ῥάβδος (rabdos) means “rod” or “wand” and is “lighter than the βακτηρία or walking-stick.”[93] In LXX, however, ῥάβδος is the translation of several words for “staff” including מַטֶּה (maṭeh),[94] שֵׁבֶט (shēveṭ),[95] מִשְׁעֶנֶת (mish‘enet)[96] and מַקֵּל‎ (maqēl).[97] We have chosen מַקֵּל for HR because this is the most common term for “staff” in MH.[98]

Below we have collected several rabbinic sources that include a מַקֵּל among a traveler’s usual accoutrements:

לֹא יִכָּנֵס [אדם] לְהַר הַבָּיִת בְּמַקְלוֹ וּבְמַנְעַלּוֹ וּבַאֲפוּנְדָּתוֹ וּבַאֲבַק שֶׁעַל רַגְלוֹ

[A person] may not enter the Temple Mount with his staff, with his shoes, with his moneybag, or with the dust that is on his feet. (m. Ber. 9:5; cf. Sifre Deut. §258, on Deut. 23:15)[99]

נָטַל מַקְלוֹ וּמָעוֹתָיו בְּיָדוֹ וְהָלָךְ לְיַוְונֶהּ אֵצֶל רַבַּן גַּמְלִיאֵ′‏

He took his staff and his money in his hand and went to Yavneh to Rabban Gamliel…. (m. Rosh Hash. 2:9)

הַפּוֹנְדְּקִית הוֹצִיאָה לָהֶן מַקְלוֹ וּמַנְעַלּוֹ וְתַרְמִילּוֹ וְסֵפֶר תּוֹרָה שֶׁהָיָה בְיָדוֹ

The woman innkeeper brought out to them his staff and his shoes, and his bag and the Torah scroll that he owned. (m. Yev. 16:7)

These sources show that having a staff, a bag and money was routine for travelers. Only a Torah scholar would be expected to have his own Torah scroll.

First-century C.E. fresco of a traveler with a staff and a heavy pack. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

First-century C.E. fresco of a traveler with a staff and a heavy pack. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

L67 וְלֹא תַּרְמִיל (HR).[100] Although appearing in a different spot in each version, the πήρα (pēra, “bag”) is the only item that is mentioned in all four lists.[101] In LXX the word πήρα occurs only in the book of Judith,[102] and hence there is no Hebrew base text with which to draw a comparison. Our reconstruction is supported by m. Yev. 16:7 cited above (Comment to L66), and by the pairing of מַקֵּל וְתַרְמִיל (“staff and bag”) in discussions that mention a shepherd’s standard equipment (cf. t. Bab. Metz. 8:6[17]; b. Bab. Metz. 41a; y. Shevu. 8:1 [42a]), and the following stories about Shammai and Hillel who lived a generation before Jesus:

ת″ר מעשה באדם אחד שלא היו בניו נוהגין כשורה עמד וכתב נכסיו ליונתן בן עוזיאל מה עשה יונתן בן עוזיאל מכר שליש והקדיש שליש והחזיר לבניו שליש בא עליו שמאי במקלו ותרמילו א″ל שמאי אם אתה יכול להוציא את מה שמכרתי ומה שהקדשתי אתה יכול להוציא מה שהחזרתי אם לאו אי אתה יכול להוציא מה שהחזרתי אמר הטיח עלי בן עוזיאל הטיח עלי בן עוזיאל

Our rabbis taught [in a baraita]: An anecdote about a certain man whose sons were not behaving themselves properly. He therefore signed over his possessions to Yehonatan ben Uziel. What did Yehonatan ben Uziel do? He sold a third and consecrated a third and returned a third to his [i.e., the man’s—DNB and JNT] sons. Shammai came upon him with his staff and his bag [במקלו ותרמילו]. He said to him, “Shammai, if you are able to invalidate that which I sold and that which I consecrated, then you can invalidate that which I returned. If not, neither can you invalidate that which I returned.” He said, “The son of Uziel has cast mud on me![103] The son of Uziel has cast mud on me!” (b. Bab. Bat. 133b-134a)

מעשה בנכרי אחד שהיה עובר אחורי בית הכנסת ושמע לתינוק שקורא ואלה הבגדים אשר יעשו חשן ואפוד ומעיל בא לפני שמאי אמר לו רבי כל הכבוד הזה למי. אמר לכהן גדול שעומד ומשמש על גבי המזבח. אמר לו גיירני על מנת שתשימני כהן גדול [ואשמש ע″ג המזבח]. אמר לו אין כהן בישראל ואין לנו כהנים גדולים שיעמדו וישתמשו בכהונה גדולה [ע″ג המזבח] אלא גר הקל שלא בא אלא במקלו ובתרמילו ויבא וישתמש בכהונה גדולה גער בו והוציאו בנזיפה‏

An anecdote about a certain foreigner non-Jew who was going walking along behind a synagogue and heard a child who was reading And these are the vestments that they shall make: a breastplate, and an ephod, and a robe [Exod. 28:4]. He came before Shammai and said to him, “Rabbi, to whom does all this honor belong?” He said, “To the high priest who stands and serves upon the altar.” He said to him, “Let me become a proselyte so that you will make me high priest [and I will serve upon the altar].” He said to him, “Is there no priest in Israel, and have we no high priests who can stand and serve as high priests upon the altar, that a simple proselyte who comes without anything but his staff and his bag [במקלו ובתרמילו] must come and serve as high priest?” He rebuked him and put him out in indignation. (Avot de-Rabbi Natan, Version A, chpt. 15:3 [ed. Schechter, 61]; cf. b. Shab. 31a)

In a variant of the story cited above the proselyte says to Hillel:

אני הגר הקל שבאתי במקלי ובמנעלי

“I am a simple proselyte who came with [nothing but] my staff and my shoes.” (Avot de-Rabbi Natan, Version B, chpt. 29 [ed. Schechter, 61])

These examples suggest that “to come with staff and bag” meant to come in humility. The proselyte’s statement to Hillel could be paraphrased as “I came only with the shirt on my back.” A staff and bag are such meager possessions that even the most destitute person would be expected to own them. For Jesus to send the apostles without these bare necessities was a statement of their absolute dependence on God to protect them on their way and to provide for them through the hospitality of the people with whom they stayed.[104]

For examples of lists with the pattern לֹא…וְלֹא, such as we have in HR, cf., e.g., Num. 11:19; m. Shab. 1:2; m. Bab. Bat. 2:1; and the baraita in b. Ber. 26b parallel to m. Ber. 9:5 that we cited above (Comment to L66).

L68 μήτε ἄρτον (GR). Whether or not to include “bread” in the reconstruction is a difficult decision. Bread is not mentioned in Luke 10:4, but, as we have noted above, the list in Luke 10:4 shows evidence of abbreviation, and therefore “bread” could simply be one of the items that was omitted. In the FR version of Luke 9:3 we have not observed the opposite tendency toward expansion, and it is in 9:3 that we find bread among the prohibited items. Some doubt, however, must remain. Although Mark 6:8, which we believe was based on Luke 9:3, includes bread, Matthew’s version omits bread. Does this mean that Matthew deleted bread from the list on the basis of Anth.? Davies and Allison suggest that the author of Matthew omitted bread because he had already prohibited the carrying of a bag, which, among other things, was used for carrying bread, and therefore naming bread seemed redundant.[105]

A loaf of bread and two figs on a shelf in a first-century C.E. Roman fresco from Pompeii. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

A loaf of bread and two figs on a shelf in a first-century C.E. Roman fresco from Pompeii. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

The Didache, which has many points of contact with the Gospel of Matthew, allows bread as the one thing apostles are permitted to carry when they set out on a journey (Did. 11:6). In Comments to L62 and L63 we noted that the author of Matthew appears to have revised the apostles’ instructions in order to safeguard his community from the abuses of itinerant travelers who called themselves apostles. The Didache seems to be responding to a similar situation, and some scholars have suggested that the Gospel of Matthew and the Didache were composed within the same cultural milieu and perhaps even in roughly the same period. Perhaps the author of Matthew omitted bread from the list of prohibited items because, when he was writing his Gospel, itinerant teachers who visited his community were permitted to carry bread on their journeys.

If the petition for daily bread in the Lord’s Prayer reflects the lifestyle of Jesus’ itinerant band of disciples, then this petition might imply that they were not accustomed to carrying food supplies with them. Without stores of food in their luggage the itinerant disciples had to pray each day that God would provide for their physical needs. The instruction to the apostles not to take bread would then be understood as a continuation of their normal procedure, which in turn makes Jesus’ seemingly radical demand much less unlikely. On balance, we have decided to include “bread” in GR and HR.

L69 μὴ πήραν (Mark 6:8). Whereas Luke 9:3 has “staff…bag…bread,” Mark 6:8 has “staff…bread…bag.” Transposition is one of Mark’s most common editorial habits.[106]

L70 μήτε ἀργύριον (GR). Luke and Matthew agree against Mark to forbid the carrying of silver. Matthew’s version is different from Luke 9:3, however, by adding bronze in conformity with Mark 6:8 (L71), and gold, which is unique to Matthew. Lindsey noted that Matthew frequently wove his two sources—Mark and Anth.—together.[107] Finding “silver” in one source (Anth.) and “bronze” in the other (Mark), the author of Matthew may simply have combined them and added “gold” for good measure.[108] In any case, the care he took to specify different kinds of precious metals and his relocation of money to the top of the list of forbidden items is characteristic of the author of Matthew’s editorial concern in the Conduct on the Road pericope to curb abuses of itinerant teachers in his churches.[109] According to the Didache, an apostle who asks for money is a false prophet (Did. 11:6).[110]

וְלֹא כֶּסֶף (HR). In Hebrew כֶּסֶף (kesef) means “silver,” but it can also be used generically for “money.”[111]

L73 μήτε ὑποδήματα (GR). According to Mark 6:9, the apostles were to go having first strapped on their sandals (σανδάλια, sandalia). Luke 10:4 (L73) and Matt. 10:10 (L75), on the other hand, forbid the wearing of ὑποδήματα (hūpodēmata, “sandals,” “shoes”). This is a fascinating point of contact between the version of the Sending discourse Luke copied from Anth. and Matthew’s version. Although this Lukan-Matthean agreement against Mark does not strictly qualify as a “minor agreement,” since these are only possible in Triple Tradition pericopae,[112] it does support our reconstruction of Anth. in GR.

Where did Mark’s permission to wear sandals come from? Lindsey believed that one of the editorial methods the author of Mark employed was to pick up words and phrases from Acts in order to allude to the later experience of the Church in his telling of the story of Jesus.[113] Lindsey referred to these literary allusions as “Markan pick-ups.” Scholars have noted that the word σανδάλια (sandalia, “sandals”) occurs only twice in NT: here in Mark’s version of the Conduct on the Road pericope (Mark 6:9), and once in the story of Peter’s escape from prison (Acts 12:8). Scholars who accept the theory of Markan Priority suppose Luke frequently rejected Mark’s vocabulary while writing the Gospel of Luke, only to use the rejected terminology in Acts.[114] While Markan priorists find it difficult to explain Luke’s motive for rejecting σανδάλια in his version of the Conduct on the Road pericope, and while the Lukan-Matthean agreement to mention “shoes” suggests that “sandals” in Mark 6:9 is editorial, we are able to suggest two reasons why Mark might have picked up σανδάλια from Acts 12:8.

First, supposing the author of Mark read the story of Peter’s escape from prison in Acts 12:1-17 and discovered that Peter, the most preeminent of the apostles, wore sandals (Acts 12:8), he may have wished to eliminate Peter’s apparent disregard of Jesus’ instructions to the apostles by changing those instructions to specifically permit sandals. Second, if we are correct that the author of Mark edited the list of items in the Conduct on the Road pericope in order to make the apostles resemble the Hebrew slaves on the eve of their redemption from Egypt, he may have recalled the story of Peter’s escape from prison, which is heavy with Exodus imagery.[115] By using vocabulary taken from Acts 12, the author of Mark could echo Israel’s redemptive history while at the same time foreshadow the experiences of the early Church.

Other shared vocabulary strengthens the supposition that there is a literary relationship between Peter’s escape in Acts 12 and Mark’s version of the Conduct on the Road pericope. Not only is the noun σανδάλια unique to these two passages in NT, but the verb both passages use for strapping on sandals, ὑποδεῖσθαι (hūpodeisthai), occurs in only one other NT verse (Eph. 6:15). Moreover, the noun Mark uses for belt, ζώνη (zōnē), comes from the same root as ζώννυσθαι (zōnnūsthai, “to gird around the loins”), the verb the angel uses to command Peter in Acts 12:8. Of course, while shared vocabulary might suggest that a literary dependence between Mark 6 and Acts 12 exists, it cannot prove in which direction the literary relationship flowed. Luke could have used Mark’s version of the Conduct on the Road pericope when writing the story of Peter’s escape, or Mark could have alluded to the story in Acts. What makes Lindsey’s solution more compelling is that Lindsey has a plausible explanation to account for Mark’s behavior: the author of Mark drew on vocabulary from a story about the most famous of the twelve apostles to retell the story of the apostles’ mission. Markan priorists are hard pressed to find a convincing explanation for why Luke would have drawn on Mark’s version of the Conduct on the Road pericope to tell his story of Peter’s escape from prison.

Sandals (top and middle) and a child’s shoe (bottom) from the first century C.E. discovered in the North Palace at Masada. Photo courtesy of

Sandals (top and middle) and a child’s shoe (bottom) from the first century C.E. discovered in the North Palace at Masada. Photo courtesy of

וְלֹא מִנְעָלִים (HR). In LXX ὑπόδημα (hūpodēma, “sandal,” “shoe”) is almost always the translation of נַעַל (na‘al, “sandal,” “shoe”).[116] In MH, however, נַעַל had become largely obsolete, appearing almost exclusively in discussions of the biblical text (cf., e.g., m. Yev. 12:6). Instead of נַעַל, we typically find either מִנְעָל (min‘āl, “shoe”)[117] or סַנְדָּל (sandāl, “sandal”).[118] A distinction is usually maintained in rabbinic sources between the מִנְעָל, a shoe that covers the foot, and the סַנְדָּל, a sole bound to the foot with straps,[119] but it is possible that מִנְעָל was sometimes used as a generic term for all kinds of footwear.

Sandals from the second century C.E. discovered in the Cave of Letters in Nahal Hever. Photo courtesy of

Sandals from the second century C.E. discovered in the Cave of Letters in Nahal Hever. Photo courtesy of

The following considerations led to our decision to use מִנְעָל in HR. 1) In cases of direct speech we prefer to reconstruct in MH style. Since Jesus was not discussing a biblical text we eliminated נַעַל as an option for HR. 2) We believe the Greek translator of the conjectured Hebrew Life of Yeshua employed a highly literal style of translation. If סַנְדָּלִים had appeared in the Hebrew text we would have expected the Greek translator to have rendered this as σανδάλια (sandalia, “sandals”), from which the Hebrew term is derived. 3) In the rabbinic sources that mention items with which travelers are typically equipped (see Comments to L66 and L67), we encounter the term מִנְעָל, but not the term סַנְדָּל.‎[120] 4) In Deut. 33:25 the LXX translators incorrectly rendered מִנְעָלֶיךָ (min‘ālechā, “your bars”) as ὑπόδημα αὐτοῦ (hūpodēma avtou, “his shoe”), treating מִנְעָל according to its MH meaning.[121] This mistranslation in Deut. 33:25 not only shows us that מִנְעָל in the sense of “shoe” existed long before the time of Jesus, it also demonstrates that ὑπόδημα was considered to be the Greek equivalent of מִנְעָל.

It is a curious fact that the plural of מִנְעָל does not occur in the Mishnah, and the examples in m. Ber. 9:5 and m. Yev. 16:7 demonstrate that the singular form could have a plural sense. Nevertheless, examples from the Tosefta and Talmud prove that the plural of מִנְעָל was possible,[122] and since the plural form of ὑπόδημα occurs in Matt. 10:10 and Luke 10:4 we have used the plural form מִנְעָלִים in HR.

According to m. Shek. 3:2, when a person entered the Temple treasury he would not wear a garment with sleeves, shoes, sandals, tefillin, or an amulet in order to be above suspicion of having embezzled sacred funds. Perhaps the strict regulations Jesus placed on the apostles were also to keep them above reproach for making a profit from their mission.

L74 καὶ μὴ ἐνδύσασθε δύο χιτῶνας (Mark 6:9). With the imperative “do not wear” the author of Mark has slipped into direct speech, whereas previously he had reported the instructions about the restrictions to the apostles’ travel gear in the third person (see Comment to L63). Luke 9:3 and Matt. 10:10 agree against Mark 6:9 to omit the verb ἐνδύεσθαι (endūesthai, “to put on”). Perhaps Mark was inspired to add ἐνδύεσθαι by comparing Anth., which probably did not have a verb like ἔχειν (echein, “to have”), with Luke 9:3 where ἔχειν was probably copied from FR. Mark’s editorial adaptation relaxes the more rigorous versions in Matt. 10:10 and Luke 9:3 which prohibit taking two tunics, since Mark 6:9 simply prohibits wearing two tunics at the same time, but presumably allows the carrying of a spare undershirt. Mark’s version probably reflects the practice of wearing two tunics mentioned in ancient sources.[123]

Second-century C.E. shirt, sandals and belt discovered at the Cave of Letters in Nahal Hever. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Second-century C.E. shirt, sandals and belt discovered at the Cave of Letters in Nahal Hever. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

וְלֹא שְׁנֵי חֲלוּקוֹת (HR). The noun χιτών (chitōn, “tunic,” “undershirt”) occurs 31xx in LXX books that are also included in MT. The majority of those instances are the translation of כְּתֹנֶת (ketonet) or כֻּתֹּנֶת (kutonet), variant forms of a noun meaning “tunic.”[124] In rabbinic literature, however, כְּתֹנֶת/כֻּתֹּנֶת usually refers to priestly vestments.[125] The more usual MH word for tunic or undergarment is חָלוּק (ḥālūq). The חָלוּק was an undergarment, typically woven from linen, over which the woolen טַלִּית (ṭalit, “cloak”) was worn.[126]

In his description of the Essenes, Josephus states:

οὔτε δὲ ἐσθῆτας οὔτε ὑποδήματα ἀμείβουσι πρὶν διαρραγῆναι τὸ πρότερον παντάπασιν ἢ δαπανηθῆναι τῷ χρόνῳ.

They do not change their garments or shoes until they are torn to shreds or worn threadbare with age. (J.W. 2:126; Loeb)

In a parallel account of the Essenes, Hippolytus of Rome (c. 170-236 C.E.) wrote:

χιτῶνας δὲ δύο ἤ διπλᾶς ὑποδέσεις οὐ κτῶνται ἐπὰν δὲ τὰ παρόντα παλαιωθῇ, τότε ἕτερα προσίενται.

They do not own two cloaks [χιτῶνας] or a double set of shoes, but when those that are in present use become antiquated, then they adopt others. (Refutation of All Heresies, 9:20)[127]

It is uncertain whether Hippolytus’ information about the Essenes was based directly on Josephus or whether both authors drew their descriptions from a common source. As Vermes and Goodman note, Hippolytus would not have had any motive to Christianize the Essenes by describing their conduct in terms familiar from the Gospels. On the other hand, it is possible that Hippolytus took his account of the Essenes from an earlier Christian source that did have this intention.[128] In any case, Jesus’ prohibitions against taking provisions for the road should not only be understood in light of the first-century pietists’ faith in divine protection, they should also be understood against the Essene practice of poverty. Just as the Essenes eschewed the accumulation of private wealth, so the apostles were to proclaim their message in a state of “royal poverty.”[129]

L76 μηδὲ ῥάβδον (Matt. 10:10). Some manuscripts of Matthew read “staves” (plur.).[130] This scribal change is an attempt to harmonize Matthew’s version with Mark’s. A similar attempt at harmonization is found in Tatian’s Diatessaron:

Get you not gold, nor silver, nor brass in your purses; and take nothing for the way, except a staff only; nor bag, nor bread; neither shall ye have two tunics, nor shoes, nor staff, but be shod with sandals…. (Diatess. 12:49-50)[131]

Although harmonization is an attractive option to explain away discrepancies in the biblical text, such an approach does not help us understand how each synoptic author operated or how the differences between the Synoptic Gospels came into being.

L77 καὶ μηδένα κατὰ τὴν ὁδὸν ἀσπάσησθε (Luke 10:4). The strange injunction against offering a greeting to passersby is found only in the version of Luke we believe was based on Anth. The prohibition is so brusque it is unlikely that Luke would have added it to his source. It seems rather that it was omitted by the First Reconstructor and consequently also in Luke 9, Mark 6 and Matt. 10.[132] Some scholars have compared Jesus’ instruction to greet no one to Elisha’s command to Gehazi in 2 Kgs. 4:29.[133] A more likely background, however, is the practice of the first-century pietists. According to the Mishnah, the early Hasidim would not interrupt prayer in order to offer a greeting, even if the passerby was a king (m. Ber. 5:1).[134] In a similar manner, the apostles were not to hinder the progress of their mission by taking time to socialize with other travelers on the road.

וְאִישׁ בַּדֶּרֶךְ אַל תִּשְׁאֲלוּ בִּשְׁלוֹמוֹ (HR). In LXX μηδείς (mēdeis, “no one”) often translates אִישׁ (’ish, “man”) in the underlying Hebrew text when אִישׁ is the subject of a negated verb. In the following examples we provide overly literal translations of the Hebrew and Greek to emphasize the different ways these two languages structure these negative sentences:

וַיֹּאמֶר מֹשֶׁה אֲלֵהֶם אִישׁ אַל יוֹתֵר מִמֶּנּוּ עַד בֹּקֶר

And Moses said to them, “Let a man not leave any of it [i.e., the manna—DNB and JNT] until morning.” (Exod. 16:19)

εἶπεν δὲ Μωυσῆς πρὸς αὐτούς Μηδεὶς καταλιπέτω ἀπ᾿ αὐτοῦ εἰς τὸ πρωί

And Moses said to them, “Let no one leave any of it [i.e., the manna—DNB and JNT] until morning.” (Exod. 16:19)

אַל יֵצֵא אִישׁ מִמְּקֹמוֹ

Let a man not go out from his place. (Exod. 16:29)

μηδεὶς ἐκπορευέσθω ἐκ τοῦ τόπου αὐτοῦ

Let no one go out from his place. (Exod. 16:29)

וְאִישׁ לֹא יַעֲלֶה עִמָּךְ וְגַם אִישׁ אַל יֵרָא בְּכָל הָהָר

And let a man not go up with you and also let a man not be seen anywhere on the mountain. (Exod. 34:3)

καὶ μηδεὶς ἀναβήτω μετὰ σοῦ μηδὲ ὀφθήτω ἐν παντὶ τῷ ὄρει

And let no one go up with you nor be seen on any part of the mountain. (Exod. 34:3)[135]

These examples illustrate Hebrew’s preference for negating the verb in these sentences, while the Greek translation prefers to negate the subject of the verb. Here in L77, however, אִישׁ is not the subject of the negative command אַל תִּשְׁאֲלוּ בִּשְׁלוֹמוֹ (“You [plur.] shall not greet him”). Nevertheless, the above examples do demonstrate that אִישׁ can be translated into Greek with μηδείς in negative sentences. Our reconstruction of μηδένα (“no one”) with אִישׁ (“a man”) in L77 is similar to our reconstruction of μηδέν (“nothing”) with כְּלוּם (“anything”) in L63.

Most examples of κατά + ὁδός in LXX are the translation of -דֶּרֶךְ + כְּ, but there are examples where κατά + ὁδός translates -דֶּרֶךְ + בְּ instead (Josh. 5:7; 2 Chr. 28:2).

The verb ἀσπάζεσθαι (aspazesthai, “to greet”) occurs 10xx in LXX, but only twice in books for which we have an underlying Hebrew text. In both instances where we do have the underlying Hebrew, ἀσπάζεσθαι is the translation of שָׁאַל לְשָׁלוֹם (shā’al leshālōm, “greet”; Exod. 18:7; Judg. 18:15). On our reconstruction with שָׁאַל בְּשָׁלוֹם, which is in accordance with MH style, rather than שָׁאַל לְשָׁלוֹם, see Tower Builder and King Going to War, Comment to L18.

L78 ἄξιος γὰρ ὁ ἐργάτης τῆς τροφῆς αὐτοῦ (Matt. 10:10). The author of Matthew moved the saying about the worker being worthy of his wage from its original position in the Conduct in Town pericope (See Sending the Twelve: Conduct in Town, Comment to L97) to the end of the list of prohibited items.[136] This alteration fits with the change in Matt. 10:9 (L63) that transformed the list into things that the apostles must not acquire in the course of their mission instead of a list of items the apostles were not to take with them. Since we believe Luke’s placement of this saying is better, we will discuss it in Sending the Twelve: Conduct in Town.

Redaction Analysis

The four versions of the Conduct on the Road pericope (one each in Matthew and Mark and two versions in Luke) mainly consist of negative imperatives forming a series of instructions concerning what the apostles were not to do on their mission. Matthew’s version of the Conduct on the Road pericope, like his version of the Sending discourse overall, is the longest and the most detailed. Mark’s version is unique in granting permissions to the apostles as well as placing restrictions on them. Luke’s version in Sending the Twelve focuses strictly on the list of items the apostles were not allowed to take, while Luke’s version in Sending the Seventy-two includes a stricture against greeting people on the road in addition to the list of restricted articles.

Matthew’s Version

Matthew’s version of the Conduct on the Road pericope is distinguished by the section of unique Matthean material found in Matt. 10:5b-8. Some of this material appears to be the result of Matthew’s editorial activity as he paraphrased his source (L56-61) and shifted the placement of the sayings to suit his purposes (L62, L78). The command to go only to Israel and avoid Gentiles and Samaritans (L52-55), on the other hand, probably came directly from the Anthology. Despite contradicting his Gentile-inclusive outlook, the author of Matthew may have felt constrained to include this commandment because it was too well known in his community to ignore. Instead of concealing the command to go only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, the author of Matthew extensively reworked the Jesus and a Canaanite Woman story in order to show that Jesus himself had repealed the Israel-only policy long before the tragic events that led to the crucifixion.

Another motivation behind Matthew’s editorial activity is a desire to place limits on the itinerant teachers who called themselves “apostles.” Like the Didache, which strictly regulated what itinerant apostles were allowed to take from the communities they visited, the author of Matthew changed the wording of his source from what the apostles were not allowed to bring to what they were not allowed to acquire in the course of their mission (L63). Such a concern suggests that the author of Matthew wrote his Gospel for a settled community rather than a missionary movement. This suggestion fits well with Lindsey’s hypothesis that the Gospel of Matthew was the latest of the three Synoptic Gospels, since an established community that has grown suspicious of itinerant teachers has reached a more advanced stage of development than a mission-oriented movement.

In Matthew’s list of prohibited items we can observe the author of Matthew’s technique of blending his two sources (Mark and Anth.). By weaving his two sources together, Matthew achieved important agreements with Luke’s versions against Mark (L70, L74, L75, L76), agreements that afford a glimpse of the pre-synoptic version of the Conduct on the Road pericope.

Mark’s Version

The Lukan-Matthean minor agreements against Mark in the Conduct on the Road pericope demonstrate that the author of Mark reworked the instructions in his source (Luke 9:3). Mark’s revisions have two main effects: 1) the rigorous injunctions placed on the apostles are somewhat relaxed, and 2) the items the apostles are allowed to carry in Mark’s version echo the description of the liberated Hebrew slaves on the eve of the exodus from Egypt. Although Mark’s version of the Conduct on the Road pericope is based on Luke 9:3 and probably influenced by Exod. 12:11, the inclusion of sandals in Mark 6:9 (L73) betrays knowledge of the doublet to Luke 9:3 in Luke 10:4. The Markan revisions have a theological significance: by altering his source the author of Mark signaled that Sending the Twelve marked the eve of the messianic redemption.

Luke’s Versions

The many points of agreement between Luke 9:3 and Matt. 10:9-10 show the degree to which FR, Luke’s source for the Conduct on the Road pericope in the Sending the Twelve discourse, preserved the wording of Anth., and also how much the author of Luke abbreviated Anth. in Luke 10:4. Luke’s interests are revealed primarily in the omission from both versions of the Conduct on the Road pericope of the command to confine the scope of the apostles’ mission to Israel. Why the author of Luke would have abbreviated the list of prohibited items when copying the Anth. version of the Conduct on the Road pericope is unclear. Perhaps he felt that a summary of the prohibited items was sufficient since he had already spelled out a more complete list in Luke 9:3.

Results of This Research

1. Why would Jesus forbid his apostles to go to Gentiles and Samaritans? Despite its cosmic consequences, Jesus’ message that the Kingdom of Heaven was breaking in upon the human stage was primarily a message for Israel. The Kingdom of Heaven was God’s rescue mission to vindicate Israel’s faithfulness to the Torah, to redeem Israel from domination by foreign rulers, and to restore the lost tribes. Such a message was neither meaningful to nor desired by Gentiles. Since Jesus did not regard the Samaritans as an organic part of Israel, he did not believe his message directly concerned them, either. Israel was the primary audience for the good news of God’s redemption, and the primary beneficiary of the inbreaking of God’s reign.

2. Would Jesus have used a pejorative term or racial slur when referring to Samaritans? The project of reconstructing the conjectured Hebrew Life of Yeshua has raised an issue that, so far as we know, has received no attention from New Testament scholars: What word did Jesus use when referring to Samaritans? The term כּוּתִי (kūti, “Cuthean”), the only term we find for Samaritans in rabbinic sources, was an unmistakably pejorative term intended to emphasize the Samaritans’ outsider status. Would Jesus have imitated the prevailing custom of his day by using a racial slur? The evidence of Matt. 10:5b, which we believe was copied from Anth., may suggest a possible answer. The Anthology’s Hebraic-Greek style indicates that the Greek translator of the Hebrew Life of Yeshua employed a highly literal method of translation. Since the term Χουθαῖος (Chouthaios, “Cuthean”) existed in Greek, as the writings of Josephus prove, we would have expected the Greek translator, following his usual method, to have used Χουθαῖος to translate כּוּתִי instead of Σαμαρίτης (Samaritēs, “Samaritan”), which is what we find in Matt. 10:5b. The presence of Σαμαρίτης in Matt. 10:5b suggests that Jesus may have used the word שֹׁמְרֹנִי (shomroni, “Samaritan”), a less offensive term, when referring to Samaritans.

3. Why were the apostles forbidden to take provisions for their journey? Their lack of travel gear cast the apostles solely on God’s providence and protection and emphasized their identification with the poor, for whom Jesus’ message was particularly good news (cf., e.g., Matt. 5:3; 6:12; Luke 1:53; 4:18).[137] The rigorous demands Jesus placed on his emissaries are in keeping with the austere lifestyle of Jesus and his full-time disciples who left their families, professions and property in order to itinerate with Jesus.[138]

The apostles’ need for complete reliance on God for protection is reminiscent of the first-century Jewish pietists who, because of their confidence in God’s watchfulness over them, insisted that taking the usual precautions from danger was unnecessary. The apostles’ lack of defensive weapons and of provisions against hunger and thirst and heat or cold is probably the reason Jesus compared the apostles to a flock among wolves. The flock would only survive if they were guarded by a competent shepherd.

Not carrying travel gear is also similar to the practice of the Essenes who relied on members of their community to meet their needs as they traveled from one Essene settlement to another (Jos., J.W. 2:124-125). An important distinction between Jesus’ instructions and Essene practice, however, is that whereas the Essenes maintained a strict separation between insiders and outsiders, refusing to accept anything from outsiders without payment (1QS V, 16-17), Jesus’ attitude was open. The bonds created with strangers through receiving their hospitality afforded an opportunity for the apostles to share the message of the Kingdom of Heaven.[139] This difference from Essene practice will be examined further in Sending the Twelve: Conduct in Town. The Essenes’ understanding of the renunciation of personal property as a path toward the attainment of the Holy Spirit (1QH VI, 2-5; 4Q521 2 II, 6), on the other hand, illuminates the intimate relationship between the abandonment of wealth and entering the Kingdom of Heaven in Jesus’ teachings (cf., e.g., Matt. 5:3).

Finally, their lack of travel equipment underscored the things the apostles did bring with them: Jesus’ message that the Kingdom of Heaven had arrived, their authority over impure spirits, and their power to heal the sick. As fully-trained disciples of Jesus,[140] the twelve apostles carried Jesus’ teachings with them, especially as those teachings were encapsulated in the Beatitudes and the Lord’s Prayer.[141] These tightly packed and highly portable distillations of Jesus’ message could be carried to any Jewish town or village to serve as the basis of the apostles’ teaching about the Kingdom of Heaven that had arrived with their coming.

4. Why does Mark’s version permit a staff, but the versions in Luke and Matthew prohibit a staff? For readers of the New Testament who are sensitive to “contradictions” in the Bible, the disagreement among the Synoptic Gospels about whether or not a staff was permitted on the apostles’ mission must seem troubling. The author of Mark probably did not see himself as contradicting Luke when he changed his version to allow the apostles to take a staff; instead, he probably thought that he was helping his audience to understand something about the apostles’ mission that they might not have appreciated fully. Mark wanted to alert his audience to the parallels between the first redemption from Egypt and the final messianic redemption that had begun through the work and teachings of Jesus. Rather than contradicting Luke, the author of Mark probably saw himself as complementing Luke. He likely expected the changes he introduced to be recognized immediately by his readers, and he may have hoped that these changes would elicit a chuckle from his readers as they enjoyed his creativity and pondered the serious message his playfulness was intended to communicate.


In the Conduct on the Road pericope Jesus instructed his twelve emissaries to stay focused on the people of Israel and to show radical trust in God’s power to protect them and provide for their needs.


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  • [1] For abbreviations and bibliographical references, see “Introduction to ‘The Life of Yeshua: A Suggested Reconstruction.’”
  • [2] This translation is a dynamic rendition of our reconstruction of the conjectured Hebrew source that stands behind the Greek of the Synoptic Gospels. It is not a translation of the Greek text of a canonical source.
  • [3] See the detailed discussion in Ze’ev Safrai and Peter J. Tomson, “Paul’s ‘Collection for the Saints’ (2 Cor 8-9) and Financial Support of Leaders in Early Christianity and Judaism,” in Second Corinthians in the Perspective of Late Second Temple Judaism (ed. Reimund Bieringer, Emmanuel Nathan, Didier Pollefeyt, and Peter J. Tomson; CRINT 14; Leiden: Brill, 2014), 132-220.
  • [4] On the Jesus tradition as a source for Paul’s halachic instruction, see Peter J. Tomson, Paul and the Jewish Law: Halakhah in the Letters of the Apostle to the Gentiles (CRINT III.1; Minneapolis: Fortress, 1990), 82, 144.
  • [5] According to Gundry, “In Matthew we are reading about itinerant ministry in evangelized communities rather than about itinerant ministry in unevangelized communities.” See Robert H. Gundry, Matthew: A Commentary on His Literary and Theological Art (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1982), 188. In other words, the author of Matthew revised the instructions to the apostles to reflect the conditions that pertained to his own community.
  • [6] See Sending the Twelve: Conduct in Town, Comment to L96.
  • [7] On the commonalities between the Gospel of Matthew and the Didache, see Sandt-Flusser, 40-52; Peter J. Tomson, “Transformations of Post-70 Judaism: Scholarly Reconstructions and Their Implications for our Perception of Matthew, Didache, and James,” in Matthew, James, and Didache: Three Related Documents in Their Jewish and Christian Setting (ed. Huub van de Sandt and Jürgen K. Zangenberg; Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2008), 91-121; idem, “The Didache, Matthew, and Barnabas as Sources for Early Second Century Jewish and Christian History,” in Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries: How to Write Their History (ed. Peter J. Tomson and Joshua Schwartz; CRINT 13; Leiden: Brill, 2014), 348-382.
  • [8] Beare, for example, stated, “A more unnecessary prohibition can hardly be imagined.” See Francis Wright Beare, “The Mission of the Disciples and the Mission Charge: Matthew 10 and Parallels,” Journal of Biblical Literature 89 (1970): 1-13, esp. 9.
  • [9] Of course, one might argue just as easily that the inital reluctance of the early believers to go to the Gentiles was because they remembered the prohibition recorded in Matt. 10:5b.
  • [10] See Nolland, Matt., 415; cf. Hagner, 1:271.
  • [11] Nolland, Matt., 415.
  • [12] The Gentile-inclusive stance of the Gospel of Matthew is expressed in the stories about the magi, who are the first people to recognize and worship Jesus (Matt. 2:11), the centurion, whose faith is greater than anyone’s in Israel (Matt. 8:10), and the Canaanite woman, who recognizes Jesus as the Son of David (Matt. 15:22). (For more on the Canaanite Woman story, see David N. Bivin and Joshua N. Tilton, “Jesus and a Canaanite Woman.”) The author of Matthew’s attitude toward Gentiles also finds expression in his LXX quotations that hint at a Gentile mission (Matt. 4:15-16; 12:18, 21), and in the predictions that the Gentiles will take the place of the sons of the kingdom (Matt. 8:11-12; cf. 21:43), verses where Matthew’s editorial activity is especially evident. See David Flusser, “Two Anti-Jewish Montages in Matthew” (Flusser, JOC, 552-560). The Gentile-inclusive stance of the Gospel of Matthew finds its ultimate expression in Jesus’ command to “make disciples of all nations” (Matt. 28:19), which the author of Matthew made the conclusion of his entire Gospel.
  • [13] Apart from Matt. 10:5b, negative views of Gentiles are expressed in Matt. 6:7, 31-32; 20:19.
  • [14] Examples of לְדֶרֶךְ + pronominal suffix translated with εἰς + ὁδός are found in Gen. 19:2; 33:16; Josh. 2:16; Judg. 18:26; 19:9; 1 Kgdms. 1:18; 25:12; 26:25; 30:2; 3 Kgdms. 1:49; 19:15; Jer. 35[28]:11.
  • [15] Examples of לַדֶּרֶךְ translated with εἰς + ὁδός are found in Gen. 42:25; 45:21, 23; Josh. 9:11.
  • [16] Examples of עַל דֶּרֶךְ translated with εἰς + ὁδός are found in Judg. 4:9; 1 Kgdms. 6:12; Hag. 1:5, 7; Jer. 39[32]:19.
  • [17] Examples of בְּדֶרֶךְ or בַּדֶּרֶךְ translated with εἰς + ὁδός are found in 1 Kgdms. 24:8; Ps. 106[107]:7; Prov. 26:13; Isa. 10:26.
  • [18] See Nolland, Matt., 415 n. 30.
  • [19] Rabbinic quotations of Jer. 10:2, which include the phrase דֶּרֶךְ הַגּוֹיִם, are found in t. Suk. 2:7[6]; Mechilta de-Rabbi Ishmael, Pischa chpt. 2, on Exod. 12:2; b. Shab. 156a; b. Suk. 29a.
  • [20] See David R. Catchpole, “The Mission Charge in Q,” Semeia 55 (1991): 147-174, esp. 159-160.
  • [21] According to Jeremias, “That Matt. 10.5 f. is the translation of an original Semitic text is established by the absence of the article before πόλιν, which points to an underlying construct state.” See Joachim Jeremias, Jesus’ Promise to the Nations: The Franz Delitzsch Lectures for 1953 (London: SMC Press, 1958), 20. On the Hebraic use of πόλις to refer to a town or village, see Robert L. Lindsey, “The Major Importance of the ‘Minor’ Agreements,” under the subheading “A Hebraic Usage of Πολίς in the Synoptic Gospels”; Widow’s Son in Nain, Comment to L2.
  • [22] Shomroni (שֹׁמְרֹנִי) simply means someone from the region of Samaria (שֹׁמְרוֹן; shomrōn). According to 1 Kgs. 16:24, Omri named the city of Samaria (שֹׁמְרוֹן; shomrōn) after Shemer (שֶׁמֶר), the previous owner of the hill upon which Samaria was built. Eventually, the region of which Samaria was the capital city also came to be known as Samaria (שֹׁמְרוֹן; shomrōn; cf., e.g., 1 Kgs. 13:32). In the Persian period Samaria was the name of the province (cf. Neh. 3:34 [Heb.] = Neh. 4:2 [Eng.]), and the region retained this name even when it was under the same rule as Judea, as was the case during the reigns of the Hasmoneans, Herod and the Roman governors.
  • [23] Although some scholars maintain that “the Hebrew tongue” refers to Aramaic, their case remains unproven. See Randall Buth and Chad Pierce, “Hebraisti in Ancient Texts: Does Ἑβραϊστί Ever Mean ‘Aramaic’?” (JS2, 66-109).
  • [24] On occasion Josephus referred to the Samaritans as Σικιμῖται (Sikimitai, “Shechemites,” i.e., “inhabitants of the town of Shechem”). See Ant. 11:342, 344, 346; 12:10. In Ant. 11:340 Josephus explains that Shechem, which is near Mount Gerizim, is the chief city of the Samaritans. Cf. Sir. 50:25-26.
  • [25] The term שֹׁמְרֹנִי does appear in the late rabbinic works Pirkei de-Rabbi Eliezer, chpt. 37, and Midrash Tanhuma, Vayashov chpt. 2.
  • [26] See Wayne A. Brindle, “The Origin and History of the Samaritans,” Grace Theological Journal 5.1 (1984): 47-75, esp. 55.
  • [27] According to 2 Kgs. 17:24, after the king of Assyria had conquered the northern tribes of Israel, he brought in many different peoples to inhabit the cities of Samaria, including some “from Kutah” (מִכּוּתָה; mikūtāh). In 2 Kgs. 17:30, these foreigners are designated as אַנְשֵׁי כוּת (’anshē chūt, “people of Kut”). In rabbinic literature the use of the term “Cuthean” underscores the Samaritans’ alleged foreign descent.

    In the Mishnah the term כּוּתִי is paired with נָכְרִי (nochri, “foreigner”) in m. Dem. 6:1; m. Ter. 3:9; m. Shek. 1:5; m. Toh. 5:8. This is similar to the parallelism of “Gentile” with “Samaritan” in Matt. 10:5b. In Sifre Deut. §331 (on Deut. 32:41) כּוּתִי is paired with מִין (min, “heretic”).

  • [28] Cf. b. Ber. 47b; b. Git. 10a; b. Kid. 76a; b. Hul. 4a.
  • [29] Josephus refers to the Samaritans by the term Χουθαῖος in J.W. 1:63; Ant. 9:288, 290; 10:184; 11:19, 20, 88, 302. Cf. Ant. 13:255 where the term for Samaritan is Κουθαῖος.
  • [30] See Menachem Mor, “Samaritan History: The Persian, Hellenistic and Hasmonean Period,” in The Samaritans (ed. Alan D. Crown; Tübingen: Mohr [Siebeck], 1989), 1-18.
  • [31] This included members of the tribes of Judah, Benjamin and Levi (cf. Ezra 1:5; 4:1), but excluded the other tribes who had been exiled by the Assyrians. On the inexactitude of the term “true Israel” in this context, see Sara Japhet, “People and Land in the Restoration Period,” in Das Land Israel in biblischer Zeit (ed. Georg Strecker; Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1983), 103-125, esp. 116-117.
  • [32] On the different Israelite groups that existed both in the land and in the diaspora in the Persian period, see Sara Japhet, “People and Land in the Restoration Period,” 104-106. The Elephantine papyri provide a fascinating example of a community that regarded itself as fully Israelite and that appears to have accepted both Jews and Samaritans as belonging to the same people. When the self-described Jewish community in Elephantine was threatened by the local Egyptian population, its leaders appealed equally to the Jews (including the high priest) and the Samaritans for aid. See A. Cowley, Aramaic Papyri of the Fifth Century B.C. (Oxford: Clarendon, 1923), Papyrus no. 30.
  • [33] According to Jacob ben Aaron, the Samaritans regard themselves as descendants of the tribes of Joseph and Levi. See Jacob, son of Aaron, The History and Religion of the Samaritans (ed. William E. Barton; trans. Abdullah ben Kori; Oak Park, Ill.: Puritan Press, 1906), 13. This claim is very ancient, being already contested in the works of Josephus (Ant. 9:291; 11:341).
  • [34] In two Second Temple-period inscriptions from the island of Delos, diaspora Samaritans refer to themselves as Ἰσραηλῖται οἱ ἀπαρχόμενοι εἰς ἰερόν ἅγιον Ἀργαριζεὶν (“Israelites who make offerings to hallowed, consecrated Mount Gerizim”). See A. T. Kraabel, “New Evidence of the Samaritan Diaspora Has Been Found on Delos,” Biblical Archaeologist 47.1 (1984): 44-46.
  • [35] Many scholars believe that the books of Ruth and Jonah were written in opposition to the “holy seed” ideology. See, for example, the lecture of Yair Zakovitch, “Intermarriage and Halachic Creativity: Reading the Book of Ruth,” 12th Annual Brenninkmeijer-Werhahn Lecture (Rome: Pontificia Università Gregoriana, 24 October 2012).
  • [36] That high priests were willing to take Samaritan wives is of particular interest, since of all classes in Jewish society the high priestly aristocracy attached the greatest importance to lineage. On the universalist view held by some Jews who repudiated the “holy seed” ideology, see Mor, “Samaritan History: The Persian, Hellenistic and Hasmonean Period,” 3-4; Moshe Weinfeld, “Universalistic and Particularistic Trends During the Exile and Restoration,” in Normative and Sectarian Judaism in the Second Temple Period (London: T&T Clark, 2005), 251-266.
  • [37] On the Samaritans in the writings of Josephus, see Louis H. Feldman, “Josephus’ Attitude Toward the Samaritans: A Study in Ambivalence,” in Jewish Sects, Religious Movements and Political Parties (ed. Menachem Mor; Omaha, Nebr.: Creighton University, 1992), 23-45. On attitudes toward the Samaritans in rabbinic literature, see Gedalyahu Alon, “The Origin of the Samaritans in the Halakhic Tradition,” in Jews, Judaism and the Classical World: Studies in Jewish History in the Times of the Second Temple Period and Talmud (trans. Israel Abrahams; Jerusalem: Magnes, 1977), 354-373; Lawrence H. Schiffman, “The Samaritans in Tannaitic Halakhah,” Jewish Quarterly Review 75.4 (1985): 323-350.
  • [38] On the dating of the destruction of the temple on Mount Gerizim, see Dan Barag, “New Evidence on the Foreign Policy of John Hyrcanus I,” Israel Numismatic Journal 12 (1992-1993): 1-12.
  • [39] According to Luke 17:18, Jesus identified a Samaritan as a foreigner. See the discussion in Joshua N. Tilton, “Jesus’ Attitude Toward the Samaritans.”
  • [40] The modern State of Israel recognizes Samaritans as belonging to the Jewish people. See Menachem Mor, “Who Is a Samaritan?” in Who Is a Jew?: Reflections on History, Religion, and Culture (ed. Leonard J. Greenspoon; West Lafayette, Ind.: Purdue University Press, 2014), 153-168, esp. 157, 163. Already in the 1840s, during a period of instability for the Samaritan community, Haim Avraham Gagin, the Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem, recognized “that the Samaritan people are a branch of the Children of Israel.” See Nathan Schur, “Samaritan History: The Modern Period (from 1516 A. D.),” in The Samaritans (ed. Alan D. Crown; Tübingen: Mohr [Siebeck], 1989), 113-134, esp. 122.
  • [41] Note that the sole instance of Σαμαρίτης in LXX (4 Kgdms. 17:29) is the translation of שֹׁמְרֹנִי.
  • [42] Alternatively, we could suppose that the Greek translator did write “Cuthean,” and that it was the author of Matthew who changed the wording to “Samaritan.” However, we have found that the author of Matthew usually copied the wording of Anth. quite faithfully, unless he had some particular point he wanted to make. But since the author of Matthew never mentions the Samaritans anywhere else in his Gospel, it is hard to explain why he would have chosen to tamper with the wording of his source.
  • [43] On the Samaritan self-designation as “keepers,” see James A. Montgomery, The Samaritans: The Earliest Jewish Sect (Philadelphia: John C. Winston, 1907), 318; Alan D. Crown, “The Samaritan Diaspora,” in The Samaritans (ed. Alan D. Crown; Tübingen: Mohr [Siebeck], 1989), 195-217, esp. 196.

    We do not know when the Samaritans began to call themselves “keepers,” but its use is attested in the works of Origen (late second to mid-third century C.E.) and Epiphanius (late fourth century C.E.). See Origen, Commentary on John 20.320-321 (on John 8:48); Epiphanius, Panarion 9.1; Jerome, Homily 42. Alon suggested that there may be an allusion to the Samaritans’ self-designation as “keepers” in the story of how Rabbi Abbahu (late third to early fourth century C.E.) sent for wine from among the Samaritans (b. Hul. 6a). See Alon, “The Origin of the Samaritans,” 362 n. 30.

  • [44] If by calling themselves “keepers [of the Torah]” the Samaritans sought to avoid the negative connotations of the name שֹׁמְרֹנִי, then this is indirect evidence that the term שֹׁמְרֹנִי was still in use among Jews who came into contact with Samaritans.
  • [45] See Knox, 2:50; Gundry, Matthew, 185; France, Matt., 381-382.
  • [46] On our rationale for basing the reconstruction documents on Codex Vaticanus, see David N. Bivin and Joshua N. Tilton, “Introduction to ‘The Life of Yeshua: A Suggested Reconstruction,’” under the subheading “Codex Vaticanus or an Eclectic Text?”
  • [47] In Luke 19:10 “seek and save the lost” alludes to Ezek. 34:12, which reads, “As a shepherd seeks out his flock when some of his sheep have been scattered abroad, so will I seek out my sheep; and I will rescue them…” (RSV). See Robert L. Lindsey, Jesus, Rabbi and Lord: A Lifetime’s Search for the Meaning of Jesus’ Words, 89.
  • [48] See our discussion in David N. Bivin and Joshua N. Tilton, “Jesus and a Canaanite Woman,” Comment to L12-16.
  • [49] See Peter J. Tomson, “The Names Israel and Jew in Ancient Judaism and in the New Testament,” Bijdragen, tijdschrift voor filosofie en theologie 47 (1986): 120-140, 266-289.
  • [50] On reconstructing οἶκος (oikos, “house”) as בַּיִת (bayit, “house”), see “Not Everyone Can Be Yeshua’s Disciple,” Comment to L33.
  • [51] See Jeremias, Jesus’ Promise to the Nations, 20 n. 2; Davies-Allison, 2:167 n. 10.
  • [52] In LXX the construct phrase בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל is translated variously as τὸν οἶκον Ισραηλ (Ruth 4:11; 2 Kgdms. 1:12; 12:8; Ps. 113[115]:20[12]; Amos 5:4; Ezek. 39:25, 29); ὁ οἶκος Ισραηλ (Lev. 10:6; 2 Kgdms. 6:15; 16:3; Ezek. 3:7; 22:18); τῷ οἴκῳ Ισραηλ (Ps. 97[98]:3; Hos. 6:10; Amos 5:3; Isa. 63:7; Jer. 38[31]:31, 33; Ezek. 3:17; 12:6; 29:6, 16, 21; 33:7, 10; 36:22, 37; 43:10; 44:12); τοῦ οἴκου Ισραηλ (Ezek. 4:4, 5; 8:12; 9:9; 14:4, 7; 45:17); τὸν οἶκον τοῦ Ισραηλ (Hos. 1:6; Amos 9:9; Jer. 3:18; 13:11; Ezek. 3:4, 5; 13:5; 14:5, 6; 17:2; 20:13, 27, 30; 24:21; 44:6); τῷ οἴκῳ τοῦ Ισραηλ (Ezek. 28:24; 40:4); ὁ οἶκος τοῦ Ισραηλ (Ezek. 3:7; 11:15; 12:9; 14:11; 18:29); οἶκος τοῦ Ισραηλ (Isa. 5:7); οἶκος Ισραηλ (Jer. 5:11; 31[48]:13); οἴκου Ισραηλ (Hos. 1:4; Jer. 11:17; Ezek. 45:17); and οἶκον Ισραηλ (3 Kgdms. 12:21). Not included in these examples are instances of the Greek vocative, since vocatives are always anarthrous.
  • [53] Since “sons of Israel” must mean something other than “sons of Judah” in Jer. 50:4, it would be natural for a first-century Jewish exegete to assume that “sons of Israel” referred to the ten lost tribes.
  • [54] The combination of ἐγγίζειν + ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν/τοῦ θεοῦ is found in Matt. 3:2; 4:17; 10:7; Mark 1:15; Luke 10:9, 11.
  • [55] “Proclaim the Kingdom of God” in Luke 9:2 looks to us like FR’s condensed paraphrase of the source behind Luke 10:9. See Sending the Twelve: Commissioning, Comment to L37-39.
  • [56] See David N. Bivin and Joshua N. Tilton, “LOY Excursus: The Kingdom of Heaven in the Life of Yeshua,” under the subheading “Which is correct: ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ or ‘Kingdom of God’?”
  • [57] In Hebrew we expect the direct object to follow the imperative. Cf., e.g., מִלְאוּ אֶת הַמַּיִם (“Fill the waters!”; Gen. 1:22), מִלְאוּ אֶת הָאָרֶץ (“Fill the land!”; Gen. 1:28), רַחֲצוּ רַגְלֵיכֶם (“Wash your feet!”; Gen. 18:4), לִקְטוּ אֲבָנִים (“Gather stones!”; Gen. 31:46), קְחוּ אֶת אֲבִיכֶם (“Take your father!”; Gen. 45:18), אִכְלוּ אֶת חֵלֶב הָאָרֶץ (“Eat the fat of the land!”; Gen. 45:18), etc.
  • [58] Cf. Marshall, 422.
  • [59] See Sending the Twelve: Conduct in Town, Comment to L103.
  • [60] See David Flusser, “Jesus’ Opinion About the Essenes” (Flusser, JOC, 167 n. 43).
  • [61] Out of the twenty-six instances of δωρεάν in LXX, twenty are the translation of חִנָּם. See Gen. 29:15; Exod. 21:2, 11; Num. 11:5; 1 Kgdms. 19:5; 25:31; 2 Kgdms. 24:24; 3 Kgdms. 2:31; 1 Chr. 21:24; Ps. 34[35]:7, 19; 68[69]:5; 108[109]:3; 118[119]:161; Job 1:9; Mal. 1:10; Isa. 52:3, 5; Jer. 22:13; Lam. 3:52.
  • [62] Davies-Allison, 171.
  • [63] See Robert L. Lindsey, “The Major Importance of the ‘Minor’ Agreements.”
  • [64] On Anth. as Luke’s source for Sending the Seventy-Two, and FR as Luke’s source for Sending the Twelve, see our discussion in Sending the Twelve: Commissioning, under the subheading “Conjectured Stages of Transmission.”
  • [65] This same phenomenon can be observed in the “Type 2” Double Tradition pericopae that exhibit low verbal identity. According to Lindsey’s hypothesis, the verbal disparity between Luke and Matthew is due to Luke’s use of FR while Matthew’s parallel is based on Anth. But the agreements in “Type 2” DT pericopae are the result of FR’s preservation of Anthology’s wording. In “Type 2” DT pericopae Luke and Matthew agree inasmuch as they both preserve, via different channels, the wording of Anth.

    For a list of “Type 2” Double Tradition pericopae, see Robert L. Lindsey, “Introduction to A Hebrew Translation of the Gospel of Mark,” under the subheading “Double Tradition.”

  • [66] Lindsey’s translation (Lindsey, HTGM, 107) reveals how un-Hebraic Mark 6:8 is: וַיְצַו עֲלֵיהֶם לָקַחַת רַק מַטֶּה לַדֶּרֶךְ (“And he commanded them to take only a staff for the road”). In order to render Mark 6:8 in idiomatic Hebrew Lindsey found it necessary to depart from a strictly literal translation of the Greek text. Delitzsch’s translation is more literal but consequently less natural in Hebrew: וַיְצַו עֲלֵיהֶם אֲשֶׁר לֹא יִקְחוּ מְאוּמָה לַדֶּרֶךְ זוּלָתִי מַקֵּל לְבַדּוֹ (“And he commanded them that they will not take anything for the road except a staff alone”). The construction צִוָּה‎ + עַל with suffix + אֲשֶׁר is extremely rare, occurring only once in MT: כִּי מָרְדֳּכַי צִוָּה עָלֶיהָ אֲשֶׁר לֹא תַגִּיד (“For Mordecai commanded her that she will not tell”; Esth. 2:10). The equivalent construction צִוָּה‎ + עַל with suffix + -שֶׁ does not occur in the Mishnah.
  • [67] See Luz, 2:71.
  • [68] See Gundry, Matthew, 186.
  • [69] See below, Comment to L64.
  • [70] See Luke 7:14 (Widow’s Son in Nain, L14), Luke 14:27 (Demands of Discipleship, L11) and Luke 22:10 (Preparations for Eating Passover Lamb, L27).
  • [71] In Luke 9:23 (copied from FR) we find ἀράτω τὸν σταυρὸν (“lift the cross”), whereas the Anth. version of this saying (Luke 14:27) has βαστάζει τὸν σταυρὸν (“carry the cross”). See the diagram in Demands of Discipleship, under the subheading “Conjectured Stages of Transmission.”
  • [72] Neither אַיִן (’ayin) nor אֶפֶס (’efes) occur in MH in the sense of “nothing.” The BH מְאוּמָה (me’ūmāh, “anything”) and the MH כְּלוּם (kelūm, “something,” “anything”) are positive terms that mean the opposite of “nothing.”
  • [73] Delitzsch’s translation of Luke 9:3 is אַל תִּקְחוּ מְאוּמָה לַדָּרֶךְ. Since we prefer to reconstruct direct speech in MH style we have opted for כְּלוּם (kelūm, “something,” “anything”), which replaced מְאוּמָה (me’ūmāh, “anything”) in MH. See Jastrow, 640; Segal, 210 §437. In the Mishnah מְאוּמָה only occurs in biblical quotations. Jastrow did not include an entry for מְאוּמָה in his dictionary.
  • [74] Double negatives are perfectly acceptable in Greek grammar. Unlike English, double negatives in Greek do not amount to a positive.
  • [75] Further examples of μηδείς + imperative in Greek authors include: μηδὲν ὀφείλετε (“Owe nothing”; Rom. 13:8); μηδὲν μεριμνᾶτε (“Be anxious for nothing”; Phil. 4:6); μηδὲν καταγινώσκετε (“Condemn nothing”; Jos., Ant. 5:113); μηδὲν πίστευε (“Believe nothing”; Herm. Mand. 11:17).
  • [76] Examples of the negative imperative אַל תִּשָּׂא occur in Isa. 2:9; Jer. 7:16; 11:14; 17:21; Prov. 19:18; Ezra 9:12.
  • [77] Of the 280 occurrences of the verb αἴρειν in LXX, more than half represent the underlying Hebrew verb נָשָׂא. There is a limited amount of data to analyze concerning the use of βαστάζειν in LXX, since the verb appears only a handful of times in LXX. In Ruth 2:16 βαστάζειν occurs twice, in both cases translating the Hebrew verb שָׁלַל (shālal, “draw out”). In 4 Kgdms. 18:14 βαστάζειν occurs once, translating נָשָׂא. An ancient Hebrew MS (2Q18) containing Sir. 6:25 also uses βαστάζειν to translate נָשָׂא. Note our comments concerning Job 21:3 in this paragraph.
  • [78] Lindsey, HTGM, 107.
  • [79] The verb נָטַל replaced לָקַח in MH, but there is evidence that לָקַח was still current in spoken Hebrew prior to the destruction of the Temple in 70 C.E. See Moshe Bar-Asher, “Mishnaic Hebrew: An Introductory Survey,” in The Literature of the Sages (ed. Shmuel Safrai, Zeev Safrai, Joshua Schwartz, and Peter J. Tomson; CRINT II.3b; Minneapolis: Fortress, 2006), 567-595, esp. 580.
  • [80] See Bovon, 2:27 n. 36.
  • [81] According to Black (159) the permission granted in Mark to take a staff was a reworking in Greek of an earlier version that forbade a staff. See Marshall, 352; Davies-Allison, 171; Flusser, JOC, 165 n. 40; Catchpole, “The Mission Charge in Q,” 148, 168; Bovon, 1:345. According to Beare, “it would appear to be necessary to postulate that Matthew and Luke have used in common a second source which forbade staff and sandals.” See Francis Wright Beare, “The Mission of the Disciples and the Mission Charge: Matthew 10 and Parallels,” Journal of Biblical Literature 89 (1970): 1-13, esp. 10.
  • [82] The possibility that Mark edited his source in order to allude to the departure from Egypt is discussed in Davies-Allison, 2:172 n. 23; cf. Marcus, 383, 385.
  • [83] Σανδάλιον is a diminutive of σάνδαλον. On the use of diminutive forms as characteristic of Mark’s redactional activity, see David N. Bivin and Joshua N. Tilton, “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style,” under the subheading “Mark’s Freedom and Creativity.”
  • [84] See Robert L. Lindsey, “Paraphrastic Gospels.”
  • [85] See Marcus, 389.
  • [86] According to Theissen, “To renounce the staff meant renouncing the most modest means of self-defense…. Anyone who wandered through the country in this way had no choice other than to abide by Jesus’ saying, “if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also…and if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles” (Matt. 5:39-41).” See Gerd Theissen, Social Reality and the Early Christians: Theology, Ethics, and the World of the New Testament (trans. Margaret Kohl; Minneapolis: Fortress, 1992), 47 n. 36.
  • [87] On the Hasidim and their distinctive halachah, see Shmuel Safrai, “Teaching of Pietists in Mishnaic Literature,” Journal of Jewish Studies 16 (1965): 15-33.
  • [88] For an analysis of the various traditions about Hanina ben Dosa and the poisonous reptile, see Baruch M. Bokser, “Ḥanina ben Dosa and the Lizard: The Treatment of Charismatic Figures in Rabbinic Literature,” Proceedings of the Eighth World Congress of Jewish Studies: Division D (1982): 1-6.
  • [89] On the many commonalities shared by Jesus and the first-century Jewish pietists, see Shmuel Safrai, “Jesus and the Hasidim.”
  • [90] See David Flusser, “‘It Is Not a Serpent That Kills,’” (Flusser, JOC, 534-551, esp. 543 n. 2).
  • [91] See Shmuel Safrai, “Jesus and the Hasidim,” under the subheading “Poverty and Wealth.”
  • [92] See Beare, 82; Hagner, 1:269.
  • [93] LSJ, “ῥάβδος,” 1562.
  • [94] In LXX ῥάβδος is the translation of מַטֶּה ‎52xx: Gen. 38:18, 25; Exod. 4:2, 4, 17, 20; 7:9, 10, 12 (3xx), 15, 17, 19, 20; 8:1, 12, 13; 10:13; 14:16; 17:5, 9; Num. 17:17 (4xx), 18 (2xx), 20, 21 (5xx), 22, 23, 24 (2xx), 25; 20:8, 9, 11; 3 Kgdms. 8:1 (Alexandrinus); Ps. 109[110]:2; Isa. 9:3; 10:15; 28:27; Ezek. 7:10; 19:11, 12, 14 (2xx).
  • [95] In LXX ῥάβδος is the translation of שֵׁבֶט‎ 26xx: Exod. 21:20; Lev. 27:32; Judg. 5:14 (Alexandrinus); 2 Kgdms. 7:14; 23:21; 1 Chr. 11:23; Ps. 2:9; 22[23]:4; 44[45]:7 (2xx); 73[74]:2; 88[89]:33; 124[125]:3; Prov. 10:13; 22:15; 23:13, 14; 26:3; Job 9:34; Mic. 4:14; 7:14; Isa. 9:3; 10:5, 24; Lam. 3:1; Ezek. 20:37.
  • [96] In LXX ῥάβδος is the translation of מִשְׁעֶנֶת‎ 6xx: Exod. 21:19; Judg. 6:21; 4 Kgdms. 18:21; Zech. 8:4; Isa. 36:6; Ezek. 29:6.
  • [97] In LXX ῥάβδος is the translation of מַקֵּל‎ 15xx: Gen. 30:37 (2xx), 38, 39, 41 (2xx); 32:11; Num. 22:27; 1 Kgdms. 17:43; Hos. 4:12; Zech. 11:7, 10, 14; Jer. 31[48]:17; Ezek. 39:9.
  • [98] In the Mishnah מַטֶּה is found only once with the meaning “staff” (m. Avot 5:6), and there it refers to Moses’ staff (cf. Exod. 4:17, 20); שֵׁבֶט appears 4xx in the Mishnah with the meaning “staff” (m. Naz. 5:3 [2xx]; m. Bech. 9:7 [2xx]), but much more frequently with the meaning “tribe”; מִשְׁעֶנֶת is found only 2xx (m. Zav. 4:7), but there the meaning is not “staff.” Jastrow (857) defines מִשְׁעֶנֶת as “crutch.” By contrast, מַקֵּל occurs 24xx in the Mishnah and has the meaning “walking stick,” “staff” or “pole.” Cf. Jastrow, 831; Bendavid, 352.
  • [99] Variant versions of the halachah reported in m. Ber. 9:5 appear in the Tosefta and in the Babylonian Talmud:

    לא יכנס אדם להר הבית במעות צרורין לו בסדינו ובאבק שעל רגליו ובאפנדתו חגורה עליו מבחוץ

    A person may not enter the Temple Mount with his money tied up in a cloth, or with dust on his feet, or with his purse girded on him on the outside [of his clothing—DNB and JNT]. (t. Ber. 7:19; Vienna MS)

    תניא לא יכנס אדם להר הבית לא במקלו שבידו ולא במנעלו שברגלו ולא במעות הצרורים לו בסדינו ובפונדתו מופשלת לאחוריו

    It was taught [in a baraita]: A person may not enter the Temple Mount with his staff in his hand, or with his shoes on his feet, or with his money tied up in a cloth, or with his purse hung over his shoulder (b. Ber. 26b)

    Some scholars, pointing to m. Ber. 9:5, have suggested that the items Jesus prohibited the apostles to take on their journey were intended to demonstrate that the apostles were on a holy mission comparable to making pilgrimage to the Temple. See Alfred Edersheim, The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah (2 vols.; London: Longmans, Green and Co., 1883; repr. Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson, 1993), 1:643; T. W. Manson, 181; See Robert E. Morosco, “Matthew’s Formation of a Commissioning Type-Scene out of the Story of Jesus’ Commissioning of the Twelve,” Journal of Biblical Literature 103.4 (1984): 539-556, esp. 555 n. 26.
    The restrictions in m. Ber. 9:5 were imposed in order that no one should use the Temple courts as a shortcut to bypass parts of the city. The only legitimate reason for visiting the Temple Mount was for worship. The prohibition against carrying travel gear on the Temple Mount was a means of ensuring the sanctity of that holy space. While the items enumerated in m. Ber. 9:5 provide useful information about normal equipment carried by travelers, it is a stretch to say on the basis of m. Ber. 9:5 that the apostles were to behave as though they were on a cultic mission. See Marshall, 352; Nolland, Luke, 1:427; France, Mark, 249 n. 19; Gundry, Matthew, 187.

  • [100] Gill may have been the first scholar to suggest that תַּרְמִיל is the equivalent of πήρα. See Gill, 7:104.
  • [101] See Davies-Allison, 2:172.
  • [102] We find πήρα in Jdt. 10:5; 13:10, 15.
  • [103] In other words, Shammai admitted that Yehonatan ben Uziel had prevailed.
  • [104] Catchpole drew attention to Gen. Rab. 60:11, which states: אם יוצא אדם לדרך ואין איסטרכיה עימו מסתגף (“If a man goes out on the road [i.e., begins a journey] and does not have with him the necessary provisions, he suffers privation”; ed. Theodor-Albeck, 2:652). See Catchpole, “The Mission Charge in Q,” 169.
  • [105] See Davies-Allison, 2:172.
  • [106] Mark’s tendency to transpose Luke’s word order was already noted by Lockton. See William Lockton, “The Origin of the Gospels,” The Church Quarterly Review 94 (1922): 216-239, esp. 217. See also David N. Bivin and Joshua N. Tilton, “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style,” under the subheading “Mark’s Freedom and Creativity.”
  • [107] See Robert L. Lindsey, “A New Approach to the Synoptic Gospels,” under the subheading “Mark Secondary to Luke.”
  • [108] For a similar example of Matthew’s weaving of sources, see Rich Man Declines the Kingdom of Heaven, Comment to L78.
  • [109] See Gundry, Matthew, 186.
  • [110] As noted above, the forbidden items in Matthew’s list were not to be acquired as gifts during the apostles’ journeys to various communities (see Comment to L63). Matthew’s context, therefore, differs slightly from the context of Mark and Luke, who mention prohibited items that were not to be taken or carried by the apostles on their journeys, presumably because the apostles were to rely on God for their sustenance, which often would have come in the form of hospitality from those communities who received them.
  • [111] Cf. BDB, 494; Jastrow, 655.
  • [112] The Mission of the Twelve in Matt. 10, Mark 6 and Luke 9 is considered Triple Tradition. The Mission of the Seventy-two in Luke 10 is unique to Luke, and is therefore not considered Triple Tradition.
  • [113] See Robert L. Lindsey, “Introduction to A Hebrew Translation of the Gospel of Mark,” under the subheading “Sources of the Markan Pick-ups”; Joshua N. Tilton and David N. Bivin, “LOY Excursus: Catalog of Markan Stereotypes and Possible Markan Pick-ups.”
  • [114] Cf., e.g., Edwin A. Abbott, The Corrections of Mark Adopted by Matthew and Luke (London: Adam and Charles Black, 1901), 113 n. 7.
  • [115] Scholars have noted that Luke told the story of Peter’s escape in such a way as to evoke the Exodus story. Not only does the story of Peter’s escape take place at Passover (Acts 12:3), Luke attributed the same motive to Herod (Agrippa)—wishing to do evil (κακοῦν, kakoun; Acts 12:1)—that LXX attributed to the Egyptians (Num. 20:15; Deut. 26:6). Also, Peter’s declaration νῦν οἶδα (“Now I know…”; Acts 12:11) is strikingly similar to Jethro’s response when he heard Moses tell of the Exodus: νῦν ἔγνων (“Now I know…”; Exod. 18:11). Luke also used vocabulary in the story of Peter’s escape from prison that recalls the description of how the Hebrew slaves were to eat the Passover lamb. For instance, τῇ νυκτὶ ἐκείνῃ (“that very night”; Acts 12:6) is similar to τῇ νυκτὶ ταύτῃ (“this night”; Exod. 12:8, 12); ἐν τάχει (“in quickness”; Acts 12:7) is reminiscent of μετὰ σπουδῆς (“with haste”; Exod. 12:11); and ζῶσαι καὶ ὑπόδησαι τὰ σανδάλιά σου (“gird yourself and strap on your sandals”; Acts 12:8) recalls αἱ ὀσφύες ὑμῶν περιεζωσμέναι, καὶ τὰ ὑποδήματα ἐν τοῖς ποσὶν ὑμῶν (“your waists belted, and your shoes on your feet”; Exod. 12:11). See Daniel R. Schwartz, Agrippa I: Last King of Judea (Tübingen: Mohr [Siebeck], 1990), 120 n. 51, n. 53.
  • [116] In LXX the noun ὑπόδημα occurs 26xx (24xx in books also included in MT); ὑπόδημα is the translation of נַעַל‎ 21xx: Gen. 14:23; Exod. 3:5; 12:11; Deut. 25:9, 10; 29:4; Josh. 5:15; 9:5, 13; Ruth 4:7, 8; 3 Kgdms. 2:5; Ps. 59[60]:10; 107[108]:10; Song 7:2; Amos 2:6; 8:6; Isa. 5:27; 11:15; Ezek. 24:17, 23.
  • [117] The noun מִנְעָל occurs 11xx in the Mishnah: m. Ber. 9:5; m. Shab. 15:2; m. Shek. 3:2; m. Betz. 1:10 (2xx); m. Yev. 12:1; 16:7; m. Ket. 5:8; m. Kel. 26:4 (2xx); m. Neg. 11:11.
  • [118] The noun סַנְדָּל occurs 37xx in the Mishnah: m. Shab. 6:2, 5; 10:3; 15:2; m. Yom. 8:1 (2xx); m. Shek. 3:2; m. Betz. 1:10; m. Taan. 1:4, 5, 6; m. Meg. 4:8; m. Yev. 12:1, 2 (2xx); m. Edu. 2:8; m. Bech. 8:1; m. Arach. 6:3, 5; m. Ker. 1:3; m. Kel. 14:5; 24:12; 26:1 (2xx), 4, 9; m. Ohol. 12:4; m. Neg. 11:11; 12:4; 13:9 (2xx); m. Par. 2:3; 8:2 (2xx); m. Mik. 10:3, 4; m. Nid. 3:4.
  • [119] The Tosefta, for instance, differentiates between a סנדל שנפחת ומקבל את רוב הרגל (“sandal that was damaged but still receives the majority of the foot”) and a מנעל שנפרם וחופה את רוב הרגל (“shoe that was torn but still covers the majority of the foot”; t. Yev. 12:8[10]). See Jastrow, 802, 1004; Zlotnick, 121 n. 12; Dafna Shlezinger-Katzman, “Clothing,” (OHJDL, 362-381, esp. 375).
  • [120] Perhaps this is because a shoe is sturdier than a sandal and therefore more suitable for travelers.
  • [121] Translation errors in LXX caused by familiarity with post-biblical Hebrew are not uncommon. See Emmanuel Tov, “The Septuagint,” in Mikra: Text, Translation, Reading and Interpretation of the Hebrew Bible in Ancient Judaism and Early Christianity (ed. Martin Jan Mulder; CRINT II.1; Minneapolis: Fortress, 1990), 161-188, esp. 170; Jan Joosten, “The Knowledge and Use of Hebrew in the Hellenistic Period, Qumran and the Septuagint,” in Diggers at the Well: Proceedings of a Third International Symposium on the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Ben Sira (ed. T. Muraoka and J. F. Elwolde; Leiden: Brill, 2000), 115-130, esp. 124-125.
  • [122] See Jastrow, 802. The plural of מִנְעָל occurs, for example, in the following statement:

    אין מגרדין לא מנעלים ישנים ולא סנדלים ישנים אבל סכין ומקנחין אותן

    They do not scrape either old shoes or old sandals [on the Sabbath] but they do rub them [with oil] and wipe them clean. (t. Shab. 3:15; Vienna MS)

    Zuckermandel’s edition reads לא מנעלים חדשים ולא מנעלים ישנים (“neither new shoes nor old shoes”). Cf. t. Shab. 4:11.

  • [123] Josephus mentions a slave who wore two tunics (Ant. 17:136); see Marshall, 353. The wearing of two or more tunics is also mentioned in t. Kil. 5:4[6], 10[15]; t. Nid. 3:2[5]; 7:2.
  • [124] In LXX χιτών is the translation of כְּתֹנֶת/כֻּתֹּנֶת‎ 25xx: Gen. 3:21; 37:3, 23, 31 (2xx), 32 (2xx), 33; Exod. 28:4, 39, 40; 29:5, 8; 36[39]:34[27]; 40:14; Lev. 8:7, 13; 10:5; 16:4; 2 Kgdms. 13:18, 19; 15:32; 2 Esd. 2:69 (Alexandrinus); Song 5:3; Job 30:18.
  • [125] See Jastrow, 680.
  • [126] See Jastrow, 465 (חָלוּק), ‎537‎ (טַלִּית); Shmuel Safrai, “Religion in Everyday Life” (Safrai-Stern, 793-833, esp. 797-798); David N. Bivin, “Jesus and the Oral Torah: The Hem of His Garment,” under the subheading “Two Garments”; Shlezinger-Katzman, “Clothing,” 367.
  • [127] Text and translation according to Geza Vermes and Martin D. Goodman, The Essenes According to the Classical Sources (Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1989), 64-65.
  • [128] See Vermes and Goodman, The Essenes, 63.
  • [129] The phrase “royal poverty” is borrowed from Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Commenting on Matt. 10:9-10, Bonhoeffer wrote: “…nothing should be seen on Jesus’ messengers which would make their royal mission unclear or incredible. In royal poverty the messengers are to witness to the riches of their Lord.” See Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Discipleship (ed. Geffrey B. Kelley and John D. Godsey; trans. Barbara Green and Reinhard Krauss; Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works 4; Minneapolis: Fortress, 2003), 189.
  • [130] See Nolland, Matt., 413.
  • [131] Translation according to Hope W. Hogg in The Ante-Nicene Fathers (10 vols.; ed. Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and Allan Menzies; repr. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1980-1986), 10:63. On ancient and more recent attempts at harmonization, see Barnabas Ahern, “Staff Or No Staff?” Catholic Biblical Quarterly 5 (1943): 332-337.
  • [132] Cf. Marshall, 418; Catchpole, “The Mission Charge in Q,” 168.
  • [133] See Taylor, 302; Mann, 292.
  • [134] See Vermes, 276.
  • [135] Further examples are found in 1 Sam. 21:3 (= 1 Kgdms. 21:3); Hos. 4:4.
  • [136] Cf. Nolland, Matt., 418.
  • [137] On barefootedness as a sign of poverty, cf. the story of Rabbi Yehoshua ben Karha in b. Shab. 152a.
  • [138] See Not Everyone Can Be Yeshua’s Disciple, Comment to L14; Rich Man Declines the Kingdom of Heaven, Comments to L45-47, L97; Demands of Discipleship, Comment to L17.
  • [139] See David Flusser, “Jesus’ Opinion About the Essenes” (Flusser, JOC, 164-167); idem, “Jesus and the Essenes,” under the subheading “Broader Approach.”
  • [140] On the apostles as fully-trained disciples, see Choosing the Twelve, under the subheading “Results of This Research.”
  • [141] Catchpole (“The Mission Charge in Q,” 168-169) noted a striking correspondence between the Beatitudes (Matt. 5:3-12; Luke 6:20-23) and the specific items the apostles were forbidden to carry.

David N. Bivin

David N. Bivin

David N. Bivin is founder and editor of Jerusalem Perspective. A native of Cleveland, Oklahoma, U.S.A., Bivin has lived in Israel since 1963, when he came to Jerusalem on a Rotary Foundation Fellowship to do postgraduate work at the Hebrew University. He studied at the Hebrew…
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Joshua N. Tilton

Joshua N. Tilton

Joshua N. Tilton grew up in St. George, a small town on the coast of Maine. For his undergraduate degree he studied at Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts, where he earned a B.A. in Biblical and Theological Studies (2002). There he studied Biblical Hebrew and…
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