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The Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ,
According to St. Matthew


THIS and other titles, with the names of those that wrote the Gospels, are not the words of the Evangelists themselves. The Scripture itself nowhere teacheth us, which books or writings are to be received as true and canonical Scriptures. It is only by the channel of unwritten traditions, and by the testimony and authority of the Catholic Church, that we know and believe that this gospel, for example of S. Matthew, with all contained in it, and that the other books and parts of the Old or New Testament, are of divine authority, or written by divine inspiration; which made S. Augustine say, I should not believe the gospel, were I not moved thereunto by the authority of the Catholic Church: Ego evangelio non crederem, nisi me Ecclesiæ Catholicæ commoveret auctoritas. Lib. con. Epist. Manichæi, quam vocant fundamenti. tom. viii. c. 5, p. 154. A. Ed. Ben. Wi.

S. MATTHEW, author of the gospel that we have under his name, was a Galilean, the son of Alpheus, a Jew, and a tax-gatherer; he was known also by the name of Levi. His vocation happened in the second year of the public ministry of Christ; who, soon after forming the college of his apostles, adopted him into that holy family of the spiritual princes and founders of his Church. Before his departure from Judea, to preach the gospel to distant countries, he yielded to the solicitations of the faithful; and about the eighth year after our Saviour's resurrection, the forty-first of the vulgar era, he began to write his gospel: i.e., the good tidings of salvation to man, through Christ Jesus, our Lord. Of the hagiographers, S. Matthew was the first in the New, as Moses was the first in the Old Testament. And as Moses opened his work with the generation of the heavens and the earth, so S. Matthew begins with the generation of Him, who, in the fulness of time, took upon himself our human nature, to free us from the curse we had brought upon ourselves, and under which the whole creation was groaning. A.-This holy apostle, after having reaped a great harvest of souls in Judea, preached the faith to the barbarous nations of the East. He was much devoted to heavenly contemplation, and led an austere life; for he eat no flesh, satisfying nature with herbs, roots, seeds, and berries, as Clement of Alexanderia assures us, Pædag. l. ii. c. 1. S. Ambrose says, that God opened to him the country of the Persians. Rufinus and Socrates tell us, that he carried the gospel into Ethiopia, meaning probably the southern or eastern parts of Asia. S. Paulinus informs us, that he ended his course in Parthia; and Venantius Fortunatus says, by martyrdom.-See Butler's Saints' Lives, Sept. 21st.


Chapter-1 - The genealogy of Christ: he is conceived and born of a virgin.
Chapter-2 - The offerings of the wise men: the flight into Egypt: the massacre of the innocents: and the return from Egypt.
Chapter-3 - Preaching of John: his penance: his baptism. His reproaches against the Pharisees and Sadducees. Jesus Christ comes to him, and is baptized.
Chapter-4 - Christ's fast of forty days: he is tempted: begins his preaching in Galilee according to the prophet: fixes his abode at Capharnaum: calls Peter and Andrew, James and John: his miracles, reputation, and numerous followers.
Chapter-5 - Christ's sermon on the mount. The eight beatitudes, and other instructions.
Chapter-6 - Alms, prayer, and fasting recommended,ut ostentation to be avoided. Forgiveness of injuries urged: simplicity of intention, and greater solicitude for the next than this life.
Chapter-7 - Rash judgment and profanation of holy things condemned. Confidence in prayer, and earnst endeavours for salvation, recommended. Cautions against false teachers. Perseverance in the practice of Christian virtues.
Chapter-8 - Cure of a leper; of the centurian's servant; of the mother-in-law of S. Peter. Dispositions for following Jesus Christ. The storm appeased. Devils driven out of two men possessed, and suffered to go into the swine.
Chapter-9 - Christ heals one sick of the palsy; calls Matthew; cures the issue of blood; raises to life the daughter of Jairus; gives sight to two blind, and heals a dumb man possessed by the devil. Harvest, and workmen.
Chapter-10 - Christ sends out his twelve apostles, with the power of miracles. The lessons he gives them.
Chapter-11 - John sends his disciples to Christ; who upbraids the Jews with their incredulity, and calls to him such as are sensible of their burthens.
Chapter-12 - Christ reproves the blindness of the Pharisees, and confutes their attributing his miracles to Satan.
Chapter-13 - The parabels of the sower of the cockle: of the mustard seed, and more.
Chapter-14 - Herod puts John to death. Christ feeds five thousand in the desert. He walks on the sea, and heals all the the diseased with a touch of his garment.
Chapter-15 - Christ reproves the Scribes. He cures the daughter of the woman of Chanaan: and many others: and feeds four thousand with seven loaves.
Chapter-16 - Christ refuses to shew the Pharisees a sign from heaven. Peter's confession is rewarded. He is rebuked for opposing Christ's passion. All his followers must deny themselves.
Chapter-17 - The transfiguration of Christ: He cures the lunatic child, foretells his passion: and pays the didrachma.
Chapter-18 - Christ teaches humility, to beware of scandal, and to flee from the occasions of sin. He promises to his disciples the power of binding and loosing: and that he will be in the midst of their assemblies. No forgiveness for them that will not forgive.
Chapter-19 - Christ declares matrimony to be indissoluble: he recommends the making one's self an eunuch for the kingdom of heaven; and parting with all things for him. He shews the danger of riches, and the reward of leaving all to follow him.
Chapter-20 - The parable of the labourers in the vineyard. The ambition of the two sons of Zebedee. Christ gives sight to two blind men.
Chapter-21 - Christ rides into Jerusalem upon an ass: he casts the buyers and sellers out of the temple: curses the fig-tree: he puts to silence the priests and Scribes.
Chapter-22 - The parable of the marriage feast: Christ orders tribute to be paid to Cæsar: he confutes the Sadducees: shews which is the first commandment in the law: and puzzles the Pharisees.
Chapter-23 - Christ admonishes the people to follow the good doctrine, not the bad example of the Scribes and Pharisees: he warns his disciples not to imitate their ambition: and denounces divers woes against them for their hypocrisy and blindness.
Chapter-24 - Christ foretells the destruction of the temple: with the signs that shall come before it, and before the last judgment. We must always watch.
Chapter-25 - The parable of the ten virgins, and of the talents: the description of the last judgment.
Chapter-26 - The Jews conspire against Christ. He is anointed by Mary. The treason of Judas. The last supper. The prayer in the Garden; The apprehension of our Lord: His treatment in the house of Caiphas.
Chapter-27 - The continuation of the history of the passion of Christ. His death and burial.
Chapter-28 - The resurrection of Christ. His commission to his disciples.