Which prophecy does Matthew 2:23 refer to?

BibleAsk Team

Matthew 2:23 – Prophecy

Matthew wrote, “And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, “He shall be called a Nazarene” (Matthew 2:23). Interestingly, there is no definite prophecy similar to the one Matthew referred to in the Old Testament.

Matthew is probably quoting a prophecy not found in the Old Testament but is found in another source. It is important to note that in other instances where Matthew quotes a precise prophecy, he writes of “the prophet. ” This is shown clearly in chapters 1:22; 2:5, 15, 17.

Therefore, Matthew’s use of the plural form of the word “prophets” in chapter 2:23 clearly implies reference. This is not to a specific prophetic statement, but to quite a few. These prophecies, if united, lead to the supposition that he was quoting inspired prophets whose writings were not included in the Canon.

These include the books of Nathan the prophet (1 Chronicles 29:29), the book of Jasher (Joshua 10:13, 2 Samuel 1:18), as well as Shemaiah and Iddo (2 Chronicles 12:15). Also, prophecies or visions referred in the Old Testament include those of Ahija and Iddo (2 Chronicles 9:29).

In addition, the phrase “the prophets was mentioned by Ezra in chapter 9:11. Therefore, his quotation must be from two options. Either it was taken from a non-canonical, but inspired, writer or a free quotation giving the accord of prophetic instruction on the subject.

Furthermore, the author of the book of Kings makes similar references to “the prophets” (2 Kings 17:23 also 21:10; 24:2). In these references, the purpose of writer is to represent the truth in question as one which was often mentioned by different prophets.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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