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Related Topics - New Testament Quotes from Old Testament: Matthew

The New Testament in general is more likely to quote from the Septuagint (LXX) than the Hebrew (MT). Matthew is an exception, as his gospel addresses a Jewish audience more familiar with the Hebrew text than Septuagint (The book of Hebrews is a second exception). In the table below, red words are words where the Old Testament texts differ from Matthew. Blue words indicate places where the Old Testament seems to be paraphrased rather than quoted directly. Sometimes this is a judgment call.

This page is under construction. Comments and corrections are welcome

Matthew Old Testament Quotations
New TestamentSeptuagintMasoretic TextComments

2:1 "Behold, the virgin shall be with child and shall bear a son, and they shall call His name Immanuel"

ιδου η παρθένος εν γαστρι εξει και τέξεται υιόν και καλέσουσιν τò ονομα αυτου ’Εμμανουήλ

Isa 7:14 Behold, the virgin shall be with child and shall bear a son, and you shall call His name Immanuel

ιδου η παρθένος εν γαστρι εξει και τέξεται υιόν και καλέσεις το ονομα αυτου Εμμανουηλ

Isa 7:14 Behold, the young woman shall be with child and shall bear a son, and she shall call His name Immanuel.

הנה העלמה הרה וילדת בן וקראת שמו עמנו אל
The Matthew quote is closer to the LXX than the MT.

2:6 And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah, are by no means least among the leaders of Judah; for out of you shall come forth a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel

καὶ σύ Βηθλέεμ γη̃ ’Ιούδα ουδαμω̃ς ελαχίστη ει̃ εν τοι̃ς ηγεμόσιν ’Ιούδα εκ σου̃ γὰρ εξελεύσεται ηγούμενος οστις ποιμανει̃ τòν λαόν μου τòν ’Ισραήλ

Mic 5:2 [LXX 5:1] And you Bethlehem, house of Ephrathah, too little to be among the thousands of Judah, out of you shall come forth for me One who will be a ruler in Israel

καὶ σύ Βηθλεεμ οι̃κος του̃ Εφραθα ολιγοστὸς ει̃ του̃ ει̃ναι εν χιλιάσιν Ιουδα εκ σου̃ μοι εξελεύσεται του̃ ει̃ναι εις αρχοντα εν τω̃ Ισραηλ

Mic 5:2 [Heb 5:1] And you Bethlehem Ephrathah, too little to be among the clans of Judah, out of you shall come forth for me One who will be a ruler in Israel

ואתה בית-לחם אפרתה צעיר להיות באלפי יהודה ממך לי יצא להיות מושל בישראל
The LXX can be construed to be a literal translation of the MT on this verse. The Matthew verse, words spoken from the mouths of the priests and scribes, is a paraphrase.

2:15 Out of Egypt I called My Son

εξ Αιγύπτου εκάλεσα τòν υιόν μου

Hos 11:1 Out of Egypt I called his children

εξ Αιγύπτου μετεκάλεσα τὰ τέκνα αυτου̃

Hos 11:1 Out of Egypt I called My Son

ממצרים קראתי לבני
The Matthew quote is from the MT and definitely not the LXX.

2:18 A voice was heard in Ramah, weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children; and she refused to be comforted, because they were no more

φωνὴ εν ‘Ραμὰ ηκούσθη κλαυθμòς καὶ οδυρμòς πολύς ‘Ραχὴλ κλαίουσα τὰ τέκνα αυτη̃ς καὶ ουκ ηθελεν παρακληθη̃ναι οτι ουκ εισίν

Jer 30:15 [LXX 38:15] A voice was heard in Ramah, of lamentation, and of weeping, and of great mourning, Rachel would not cease weeping for her children, because they were no more

φωνὴ εν Ραμα ηκούσθη θρήνου καὶ κλαυθμου̃ καὶ οδυρμου̃ Ραχηλ αποκλαιομένη ουκ ηθελεν παύσασθαι επὶ τοι̃ς υιοι̃ς αυτη̃ς οτι ουκ εισίν

Jer 31:15 A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation and bitter weeping, Rachel weeping for her children; she refused to be comforted for her children, because they were no more.

קול ברמה נשמע נהי בכי תמרורים רחל מבכה על-בניה מאנה להנחם על-בניה כי איננו
The Matthew quote is a little closer to the MT than the LXX. In addition to the extra phrase "for her children", the LXX uses genitives for lamentation, etc. while Matthew uses nominatives.

2:23 He shall be called a Nazarene

Ναζωραι̃ος κληθήσεται
none none It is uncertain if this is intended to be a direct quote from the Old Testament. If it is, the Old Testament source is uncertain. Some have suggested that Isa 11:1, using the Hebrew "netzer" for "branch" is a possibility.

3:3 The voice of one crying in the wilderness, make ready the way of the Lord, make his paths straight!

φωνὴ βοω̃ντος εν τη̃ ερήμω ετοιμάσατε τὴν οδòν κυρίου ευθείας ποιει̃τε τὰς τρίβους αυτου

Isa 40:3 The voice of one crying in the wilderness, make ready the way of the Lord, make our God's paths straight.

φωνὴ βοω̃ντος εν τη̃ ερήμω ετοιμάσατε τὴν οδὸν κυρίου ευθείας ποιει̃τε τὰς τρίβους του̃ θεου̃ ημω̃ν

Isa 40:3The voice of one crying, in the wilderness make ready the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.

קול קורא במדבר פנו דרך יהוה ישרו בערבה מסלה לאלהינו
The Matthew quote is closer to the LXX than to the MT. Note also that in Matthew and the LXX, the voice is in the wilderness, while in the MT it is the road that appears to be in the wilderness.

4:4 Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God

ουκ επ' αρτω μόνω ζήσεται ο ανθρωπος αλλ' επὶ παντὶ ρήματι εκπορευομένω διὰ στόματος θεου̃

Deut 8:3 Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God

ουκ επ' αρτω μόνω ζήσεται ο ανθρωπος αλλ' επὶ παντὶ ρήματι τω̃ εκπορευομένω διὰ στόματος θεου̃

Deut 8:3 Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God

לא על-הלחם לבדו יחיה האדם כי על-כל-מוצא פי-יהוה
Matthew, the LXX and the MT are essentially identical here.

4:6 He will command His angels concerning you; and On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone

οτι τοι̃ς αγγέλοις αυτου̃ εντελει̃ται περὶ σου̃ καὶ επὶ χειρω̃ν αρου̃σίν σε μήποτε προσκόψης πρòς λίθον τòν πόδα σου

Ps 91:11-12 [LXX 90:11-12] He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone

οτι τοι̃ς αγγέλοις αυτου̃ εντελει̃ται περὶ σου̃ του̃ διαφυλάξαι σε εν πάσαις ται̃ς οδοι̃ς σου επὶ χειρω̃ν αρου̃σίν σε μήποτε προσκόψης πρὸς λίθον τὸν πόδα σου

Ps 91:11-12 He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone

כי מלאכיו יצוה-לך לשמרך בכל-דרכיך על-כפים ישאונך פן-תגף באבן רגלך
The MT and LXX are essentially identical. In Matthew, the passage is also identical except that it omits the phrase, "to guard you in all your ways." The devil is the speaker in Matthew.

4:7 You shall not put the Lord your God to the test

ουκ εκπειράσεις κύριον τòν θεόν σου

Deut 6:16 You shall not put the Lord your God to the test

ουκ εκπειράσεις κύριον τὸν θεόν σου

Deut 6:16 You shall not put the LORD your God to the test

לא תנסו את-יהוה אלהיכם
Matthew, the LXX and the MT are all essentially identical.

4:10 You shall worship the Lord your God, and Serve Him only

κύριον τòν θεόν σου προσκυνήσεις καὶ αυτω̃ μόνω λατρεύσεις

Deut 6:13; 10:20 You shall fear the Lord your God and serve Him

κύριον τὸν θεόν σου φοβηθήση καὶ αυτω̃ λατρεύσεις

Deut 6:13, 10:20 You shall fear the Lord your God and serve Him

את-יהוה אלהיך תירא ואתו תעבד ובשמו
The MT and LXX are essentially identical. The use of "only" in this Matthew quote is not present in this verse in Deuteronomy, but is a major theme of the book of Deuteronomy.

4:15-16 The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the gentiles--The people who were sitting in darkness saw a great light, and those who were sitting in the land and shadow of death, upon them a light dawned.

γη̃ Ζαβουλὼν καὶ γη̃ Νεφθαλίμ οδòν θαλάσσης πέραν του̃ ’Ιορδάνου Γαλιλαία τω̃ν εθνω̃ν ο λαòς ο καθήμενος εν σκότει φω̃ς ει̃δεν μέγα καὶ τοι̃ς καθημένοις εν χώρα καὶ σκια̃ θανάτου φω̃ς ανέτειλεν αυτοι̃ς

Isa 9:1-2 [LXX 8:23-9:1] Land of Zebulun, the land of Naphtali, by the way of the sea, and the rest that inhabit the seacoast, and beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the gentiles, the midst of Judah--O people walking in darkness, see a great light; those sitting in the land and shadow of death, a light shall shine upon you.

χώρα Ζαβουλων η γη̃ Νεφθαλιμ οδὸν θαλάσσης καὶ οι λοιποὶ οι τὴν παραλίαν κατοικου̃ντες καὶ πέραν του̃ Ιορδάνου Γαλιλαία τω̃ν εθνω̃ν τὰ μέρη τη̃ς Ιουδαίας ο λαὸς ο πορευόμενος εν σκότει ιδετε φω̃ς μέγα οι κατοικου̃ντες εν χώρα καὶ σκια̃ θανάτου φω̃ς λάμψει εφ' υμα̃ς

Isa 9:1-2 [MT 8:23-9:1] The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but later on He shall make it glorious, by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the gentiles--The people who were walking in darkness saw a great light, and those who were sitting in the land and shadow of death, upon them a light dawned.

ארצה זבלון וארצה נפתלי והאחרון הכביד דרך הים עבר הירדן גליל הגוים העם ההלכים בחשך ראו אור גדול ישבי בארץ צלמות אור נגה עליהם
Matthew is a little closer to the MT. The LXX is not a very literal translation of the MT in this passage (this is true for much of Isaiah).

5:21 You shall not commit murder

ου φονεύσεις

Exod 20:13, Deut 5:17 [LXX Exod 20:15, Deut 5:18] You shall not commit murder

ου φονεύσεις

Exod 20:13, Deut 5:17 You shall not commit murder

לא תרצח
All three are identical.

5:27 You shall not commit adultery

ου μοιχεύσεις

Exod 20:14, Deut 5:18 [LXX Exod 20:13, Deut 5:17] You shall not commit adultery

ου μοιχεύσεις

Exod 20:14, Deut 5:18 You shall not commit adultery

לא תנאף
All three are identical

5:31 Whoever sends his wife away, let him give her a certificate of divorce

ὸς ὰν απολύση τὴν γυναι̃κα αυτου̃ δότω αυτη̃ αποστάσιον

Deut 24:1 He writes her a certificate of divorce and puts it in her hand and sends her out from his house

γράψει αυτη̃ βιβλίον αποστασίου καὶ δώσει εις τὰς χει̃ρας αυτη̃ς καὶ εξαποστελει̃ αυτὴν εκ τη̃ς οικίας αυτου̃

Deut 24:1 He writes her a certificate of divorce and puts it in her hand and sends her out from his house

וכתב לה ספר כריתת ונתן בידה ושלחה מביתו
Matthew's quote is a summary paraphrase of the Old Testament passage. The LXX and the MT are identical.

5:33 You shall not make false vows, but shall fulfill your vows to the Lord.

ουκ επιορκήσεις αποδώσεις δὲ τω̃ κυρίω τοὺς ορκους σου

Lev 19:12, Num 30:2 You shall not swear in My name falsely...everything that goes out of his mouth he shall do

ουκ ομει̃σθε τω̃ ονόματί μου επ' αδίκω... πάντα οσα εὰν εξέλθη εκ του̃ στόματος αυτου̃ ποιήσει

Lev 19:12, Num 30:2 [MT 30:3] You shall not swear in My name falsely...everything that goes out of his mouth he shall do

לא-תשבעו בשמי לשקר... ככל-היצא מפיו יעשה
Matthew's quote is a summary paraphrase of Lev 19:12, Num 30:2, Deut 23:21 and Deut 23:23.

5:38 An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth

οφθαλμòν αντὶ οφθαλμου̃ καὶ οδόντα αντὶ οδόντος

Exod 21:24 An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth

οφθαλμὸν αντὶ οφθαλμου̃ οδόντα αντὶ οδόντος

Exod 21:24 An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth

עין תחת עין שן תחת שן
All three are identical, except that Matthew includes the word "and."

5:43 You shall love your neighbor

αγαπήσεις τòν πλησίον σου

Lev 19:18 You shall love your neighbor

αγαπήσεις τὸν πλησίον σου

Lev 19:18 You shall love your neighbor

אהבת לרעך
All three are identical.

7:23 Depart from me, you who practice lawlessness

αποχωρει̃τε απ' εμου̃ οι εργαζόμενοι τὴν ανομίαν

Ps 6:8 Depart from me all who practice lawlessness

απόστητε απ' εμου̃ πάντες οι εργαζόμενοι τὴν ανομίαν

Ps 6:8 Depart from me all who practice lawlessness

סורו ממני כל-פעלי און
This is one of many New Testament passages where an Old Testament quote is used without being explcitly named as such. Different Greek words for "depart" are used."

8:17 He himself took our infirmities and carried away our diseases.

αυτòς τὰς ασθενείας ημω̃ν ελαβεν καὶ τὰς νόσους εβάστασεν

Isa 53:4 He himself bears our sins, and is pained for us.

ου̃τος τὰς αμαρτίας ημω̃ν φέρει καὶ περὶ ημω̃ν οδυνα̃ται

Isa 53:4 He himself took our infirmities and carried away our diseases.

חלינו הוא נשא ומכאבינו סבלם
Matthew's quote is an acceptable translation of the MT, though it sounds much different from the traditional "griefs" and "sorrows." The LXX is quite different.

9:13 I desire compassion and not sacrifice

ελεος θέλω καὶ ου θυσίαν

Hos 6:6 I desire compassion and not sacrifice

ελεος θέλω καὶ ου θυσίαν

Hos 6:6 I desire compassion and not sacrifice

חסד חפצתי ולא-זבח
All three are identical

10:35-36 Set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man's enemies will be members of his household

η̃λθον γὰρ διχάσαι ανθρωπον κατὰ του̃ πατρòς αυτου̃ καὶ θυγατέρα κατὰ τη̃ς μητρòς αυτη̃ς καὶ νύμφην κατὰ τη̃ς πενθερα̃ς αυτη̃ς καὶ εχθροὶ του̃ ανθρώπου οι οικιακοὶ αυτου̃

Micah 7:6 son treats father contemptuously, Daughter rises up against her mother, Daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; A man's enemies are all the men of his own household

υιὸς ατιμάζει πατέρα θυγάτηρ επαναστήσεται επὶ τὴν μητέρα αυτη̃ς νύμφη επὶ τὴν πενθερὰν αυτη̃ς εχθροὶ ανδρὸς πάντες οι ανδρες οι εν τω̃ οικω αυτου̃

Micah 7:6 son treats father contemptuously, Daughter rises up against her mother, Daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; A man's enemies are the men of his own household.

בן מנבל אב בת קמה באמה כלה בחמתה איבי איש אנשי ביתו
Matthew's passage here is a reuse of the words from Micah 7:6, not intended to be an exact quote.

11:10 Behold, I send my messenger ahead of You, who will prepare Your way before You

ιδοὺ εγὼ αποστέλλω τòν αγγελόν μου πρò προσώπου σου ὸς κατασκευάσει τὴν οδόν σου εμπροσθέν σου

Mal 3:1 Behold, I send my messenger, who will survey a way before me

ιδοὺ εγὼ εξαποστέλλω τὸν αγγελόν μου καὶ επιβλέψεται οδὸν πρὸ προσώπου μου

Mal 3:1 Behold, I send my messenger, who will prepare a way before me

הנני שלח מלאכי ופנה-דרך לפני
Matthew changes the Old Testament "me" (God) to a "you" (Christ). The change points to Matthew understanding the divinity of Christ.

12:7 I desire compassion, and not sacrifice

ελεος θέλω καὶ ου θυσίαν

Hos 6:6 I desire compassion, and not sacrifice

ελεος θέλω καὶ ου θυσίαν

Hos 6:6 I desire compassion, and not sacrifice

חסד חפצתי ולא-זבח
All three are identical

12:18-21 Behold, My Servant whom I have chosen; My Beloved in whom My soul is well-pleased; I will put My Spirit upon Him, and He shall proclaim justice to the gentiles. He will not quarrel, nor cry out; nor will anyone hear His voice in the streets. A battered reed he will not break off, and a smoldering wick He will not put out, until He leads justice to victory. And in His names the gentiles will hope.

ιδοὺ ο παι̃ς μου ὸν ηρέτισα ο αγαπητός μου εις ὸν ευδόκησεν η ψυχή μου θήσω τò πνευ̃μά μου επ' αυτόν καὶ κρίσιν τοι̃ς εθνεσιν απαγγελει̃ ουκ ερίσει ουδὲ κραυγάσει ουδὲ ακούσει τις εν ται̃ς πλατείαις τὴν φωνὴν αυτου̃ κάλαμον συντετριμμένον ου κατεάξει καὶ λίνον τυφόμενον ου σβέσει εως ὰν εκβάλη εις νι̃κος τὴν κρίσιν καὶ τω̃ ονόματι αυτου̃ εθνη ελπιου̃σιν

Isa 42:1-4 Jacob is my servant, I will help him; Israel is my elect, My soul has accepted him. I have put my Spirit on him, he will bring forth justice to the gentiles. He shall not cry, nor lift up his voice, nor shall his voice be heard outside. A bruised reed he shall not break, and a smoking flax he shall not quench, but he shall bring forth justice to truth. He shall shine out, and not be discouraged, until he has set justice on the earth, and in his name shall the gentiles trust.

Ιακωβ ο παι̃ς μου αντιλήμψομαι αυτου̃ Ισραηλ ο εκλεκτός μου προσεδέξατο αυτὸν η ψυχή μου εδωκα τὸ πνευ̃μά μου επ' αυτόν κρίσιν τοι̃ς εθνεσιν εξοίσει ου κεκράξεται ουδὲ ανήσει ουδὲ ακουσθήσεται εξω η φωνὴ αυτου̃ κάλαμον τεθλασμένον ου συντρίψει καὶ λίνον καπνιζόμενον ου σβέσει αλλὰ εις αλήθειαν εξοίσει κρίσιν αναλάμψει καὶ ου θραυσθήσεται εως ὰν θη̃ επὶ τη̃ς γη̃ς κρίσιν καὶ επὶ τω̃ ονόματι αυτου̃ εθνη ελπιου̃σιν

Isa 42:1-4 Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations. He will not cry out or raise His voice, Nor make His voice heard in the street. A bruised reed He will not break And a dimly burning wick He will not extinguish; He will faithfully bring forth justice. He will not be disheartened or crushed Until He has established justice in the earth; And the coastlands will wait expectantly for His law."

הן עבדי אתמך-בו בחירי רצתה נפשי נתתי רוחי עליו משפט לגוים יוציא לא יצעק ולא ישא ולא-ישמיע בחוץ קולו קנה רצוץ לא ישבור ופשתה כהה לא יכבנה לאמת יוציא משפט לא יכהה ולא ירוץ עד-ישים בארץ משפט ולתורתו איים ייחילו
Matthew is using the MT. The LXX identifies the servant as "Jacob" and "Israel", which would render Matthew's point invalid, as he is applying the servant passage to Christ. To be continued

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