The Gospel According to Matthew (Gospel of Matthew, or Matthew) is one of my favorite parts of The Holy Bible.
"The Gospel According to Matthew is one of the four canonical Gospels, one of the three synoptic Gospels, and the first book of the New Testament," according to Wikipedia. "The narrative tells how the Messiah, Jesus, rejected by Israel, finally sends the disciples to preach his Gospel to the whole world.
"Most scholars believe the Gospel of Matthew was composed between 80 and 90 CE, with a range of possibility between 70 to 110 CE (a pre-70 date remains a minority view). The anonymous author was probably a male Jew, standing on the margin between traditional and non-traditional Jewish values, and familiar with technical legal aspects of scripture being debated in his time.
"Writing in a polished Semitic 'synagogue Greek', he drew on three main sources, the Gospel of Mark, the hypothetical collection of sayings known as the Q source, and material unique to his own community, called 'Special Matthew', or the M source.
"The Gospel of Matthew is a creative reinterpretation of Mark, stressing Jesus' teachings as much as his acts, and making subtle changes to reveal his divine nature ~ Mark's 'young man' who appears at Jesus' tomb, for example, becomes a radiant angel in Matthew.
"The divine nature of Jesus was a major issue for the community of Matthew, the crucial element marking them from their Jewish neighbors; the Gospel of Mark recounts prior revelations in Jesus' lifetime on earth, at his baptism and transfiguration, but Matthew goes back further still, showing Jesus as the Son of God from his birth, the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy."