Best Matthew Commentaries | Updated for 2020

The best Gospel of Matthew commentaries are listed below. The commentaries listed first are those that have received the best reviews. You will also find options for commentaries on Matthew that help pastors, teachers, and readers with application of the Bible, commentaries that approach the Scripture verse-by-verse, classic Christian commentaries, and much more.


Best-Reviewed Gospel of Matthew Commentaries


The Gospel of Matthew (New International Commentary on the New Testament) by R. T. France

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Matthew commentary by R.T. France

Reviews and Accolades:

D. A. Carson: a “best buy” on Matthew, “Judicious, well-written, and informed, this is likely to become a standard work on Matthew for some time to come.”

Tom Schreiner: recommended, “excellent”

Keith Mathison: #1 commentary on Matthew, “France’s work is thorough and solidly evangelical and will be beneficial to pastors and all serious students of Scripture”

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: France takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He was an evangelical and affiliated with the Anglican church (d. 2012). France served on the NIV translation committee. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. With the 2007 publication of this volume, France expands his volume on Matthew in the TNTC series, which was published in 1985 (see below). The publisher notes that the NICNT series aims “to provide earnest students of the New Testament with an exposition that is thorough and abreast of modern scholarship and at the same time loyal to the Scriptures as the infallible Word of God.” See more about the New International Commentary on the New Testament series.


Matthew (Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Revised) by D. A. Carson

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Matthew commentary by D.A. Carson

Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended, “clear first choice for pastors”

Desiring God: #1 recommended commentary on Matthew

Keith Mathison: #2 commentary on Matthew; “Carson’s work is characterized by careful and sane exegesis and consideration of all interpretive options”

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Carson takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He is a Reformed evangelical and teaches at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Carson is well-known for his John commentary in the PNTC series. The commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. With this volume, Carson updated his 1984 edition with this 2010 revision. Though not afraid to dive deeply into historical or theological matters, Carson has pastors in mind when he writes. The publisher notes that the REBC series “is that of a scholarly evangelicalism committed to the divine inspiration, complete trustworthiness, and full authority of the Bible.” See more about the Expositor’s Bible Commentary series, original and revised.


A Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew by Craig S. Keener

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Matthew commentary by Craig Keener

Reviews and Accolades:

D. A. Carson: a “best buy” on Matthew; “sets new standards…it is engagingly written and always has the preacher and teacher in mind”

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Matthew

Keith Mathison: #3 commentary on Matthew, “Keener is an outstanding exegete”

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Keener takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He is Arminian. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. This volume is more scholarly than Keener’s Matthew volumes in the SRC and IVPNTC commentary series. It includes information helpful to pastors, but the IVPNTC edition provides more. This commentary is not part of a series. Keener is well-known for his Acts commentary. The publisher notes that “Keener focuses on two aspects of the interpretation of Matthew. First, he analyzes the social-historical-rhetorical contexts of both Matthew and his traditions. Second, he examines the nature of Matthew’s exhortations to his Christian audience pericope by pericope.”


Matthew 1-13 and 14-28 (Word Biblical Commentary) by Donald A. Hagner

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Matthew commentary by Donald Hagner

Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended; “helpful commentary on the Greek text”

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Matthew

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Hagner takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He is ordained in the United Presbyterian church. Hagner is retired from Fuller seminary. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers. This volume consists of two volumes. Readers who have a working knowledge of Greek will maximize Hagner’s insights. The publisher notes that the WBC series “delivers the best in biblical scholarship, from the leading scholars who share a commitment to Scripture as divine revelation.” See more about the Word Biblical Commentary series.


Matthew (New American Commentary) by Craig L. Blomberg

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Matthew commentary by Craig Blomberg

Interview: Read Best Bible Commentaries seven-question interview with Craig Blomberg on this volume

Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended; “helpful commentary for pastors”

D.A. Carson: “equally good in detail and in the flow of the argument”

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Blomberg takes an evangelical approach to Scripture. He teaches at Denver Seminary, which is Baptist. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. This volume is helpful to pastors, adding preaching and application insights to exegesis. Blomberg co-authored the James commentary in ZECNT series. The publisher notes that this series “has been designed primarily to enable pastors, teachers, and students to read the Bible with clarity and proclaim it with power.” See more about the New American Commentary series.


Matthew (International Critical Commentary) by W. D. Davies and Dale C. Allison

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Matthew commentary by Davies and Allison

Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended, “massive and technical Greek commentary”

Keith Mathison: #5 commentary on Matthew; “the work of Davies and Allison is indispensable”

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: The authors take a critical approach to Scripture. Davies was a Congregationalist, a Reformed pastor, and was an early proponent of The New Perspective on Paul (d. 2001). Allison currently teaches at Princeton Theological Seminary. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. The unabridged version of this commentary consists of three volumes and is technical. The abridged version, which is pictured, is one volume and not technical. The publisher notes that the ICC series has “sought to bring together all the relevant aids to exegesis, linguistic and textual no less than archaeological, historical, literary and theological to help the reader.” See more about the International Critical Commentary series.


Matthew (Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament) by Grant R. Osborne

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Matthew commentary by Grant Osborne

Reviews and Accolades:

Craig Blomberg, etal.: a “priority” commentary on Matthew

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Osborne takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He was Arminian (d. 2018). He served on the NLT translation committee. Osborne’s doctoral advisor was I. Howard Marshall. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers. This volume includes technical discussion, yet has also been well-reviewed as a resource for pastors because of the preaching help it provides. He is well-known for his Revelation commentary in the BECNT series. The publisher notes that the ZECNT series “was refined over time by an editorial board who listened to pastors and teachers express what they wanted to see in a commentary series based on the Greek text.” See more about the Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament series. Also see The Visual Aid Pastors Will Love in the ZEC commentary series.


The Gospel According to Matthew (Pillar New Testament Commentary) by Leon Morris

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Reviews and Accolades:

Keith Mathison: #4 commentary on Matthew, “one should not neglect the work of Leon Morris”

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Morris takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He was an evangelical, affiliating with the Anglican church (d. 2006). This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. This volume combines exegetical and preaching insights. Morris is well-known for his Romans commentary in the same series. The publisher notes that the PNTC series combines “rigorous exegesis and exposition, with an eye alert both to biblical theology and the contemporary relevance of the Bible.” See more about the Pillar New Testament Commentary series.


Matthew (Tyndale New Testament Commentary) by R.T. France

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Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended, “a shorter treatment that is helpful”

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: France takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He was an evangelical and affiliated with the Anglican church (d. 2012). France served on the NIV translation committee. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. With this volume, France updated and expanded his Matthew volume in the NICNT series (see above). The publisher notes that the TNTC series is “designed to help readers understand what the Bible actually says and what it means…[each commentary] examines the text section by section, drawing out its main themes.” See more about the Tyndale New Testament Commentary series.


Matthew (Teach the Text Commentary Series) by Jeannine K. Brown

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Interview: Read Best Bible Commentaries’ interview with Jeannine K. Brown on this volume

Reviews and Accolades:

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Matthew

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Brown takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. She teaches at a Baptist seminary. Brown serves on the NIV translation committee. This commentary is best for pastors, individual study, Bible studies, and adult Sunday school classes. The volume combines interpretation and application. The publisher notes that this series utilizes “the best of biblical scholarship” and provides “the information a pastor needs to communicate the text effectively.” See more about the Teach the Text series.


Matthew (New Cambridge Bible Commentary) by Craig A. Evans

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Reviews and Accolades:

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Matthew

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Evans graduated from a Baptist seminary and teaches at a Houston Baptist University. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. Pastors will find this volume helpful, but scholars and college students even more so. The publisher notes that the NCBC series does not “assume the reader has a great deal of specialized theological knowledge or an impressive command of the Hebrew, Aramaic, or biblical Greek.” See more about the New Cambridge Bible Commentary series.


Matthew (Hermeneia) by Ulrich Luz

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Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended, “a careful and massive commentary”

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: This volume is best for readers who can follow a technical Greek commentary. It was translated from four volumes in German to three volumes in English. Luz published these volumes over a 20-year period. The publisher notes the Hermeneia series “has a rich background in the history of biblical interpretation as a term for the detailed, systematic exposition of a scriptural work.” See more about the Hermeneia Bible commentary series.


Verse-by-Verse Expository Commentaries


Matthew (NIV Application Commentary) by Michael J. Wilkins

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Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Wilkins takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He is ordained in the EFCA denomination. Wilkins teaches at BIOLA University. He specializes in New Testament theology, Christology, and discipleship. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. This volume is much larger than others in the NIVAC series at over 1,000 pages. The publisher notes that the goal of the NIVAC series “is to help you with the difficult but vital task of bringing an ancient message into a modern context.” See more about the NIV Application Commentary series. Also compare NIVAC and IVPNTC commentaries.


Matthew (Reformed Expositional Commentary) by Daniel M. Doriani

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Interview: Read Best Bible Commentaries seven-question interview with Daniel M. Doriani on this volume

Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Doriani takes an evangelical approach to Scripture. He is Reformed. Doriani teaches at Covenant Seminary. This commentary is best for pastors, individual study, devotional reading, Bible studies, and adult Sunday school classes. This volume, like others in this series, read like sermons. Doriani also wrote the 1 Peter commentary in this series. The publisher notes that the REC series has four commitments. “First, these commentaries aim to be biblical… unashamedly doctrinal… redemptive-historical… [and] practical…” See more about the Reformed Expository Commentary series.


Matthew (Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament) by David L. Turner

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Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Turner takes an evangelical approach to Scripture. He is a progressive dispensationalist.1 Turner teaches at Cornerstone University. This commentary is best for readers who can follow a technical Greek commentary. The publisher notes that BECNT series aims “to provide, within the framework of informed evangelical thought, commentaries that blend scholarly depth with readability, exegetical detail with sensitivity to the whole, and attention to critical problems with theological awareness.” See more about the Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament series.


Matthew (Concordia Commentary) by Jefferey Gibbs

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Please also see Matthew 11:2-20:34 and Matthew 21:2-28:2 by Dr. Gibbs.

Theology, Audience, Purpose: Gibbs takes an evangelical approach to Scripture. He is evangelical and Lutheran. While not technical, the volumes in the Concordia Commentary series reflect seminary-level scholarship. The target audience is pastors, professors, and teachers. According to the publisher, authors in the Concordia series “fully affirms the divine inspiration, inerrancy, and authority of Scripture as it emphasizes ‘that which promotes Christ’ in each pericope.” See more about the Concordia Commentary series.


Matthew: The Christbook by Frederick Dale Bruner

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Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Bruner is Reformed. He taught at Whitworth College. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. This commentary consists of two volumes and is theologically focused. This commentary is not part of series. The publisher notes that in this commentary “Bruner asks both what Matthew’s Gospel said to its first hearers and what it says to readers today.”


Matthew (Brazos Theological Commentary) by Stanley Hauerwas

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Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Hauerwas identifies as a member of the evangelical left. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. This volume, like others in the series, employs a systematic theologian to write an exposition. The publisher notes that commentaries in the Brazos series are “designed to serve the church—through aid in preaching, teaching, study groups, and so forth—and demonstrate the continuing intellectual and practical viability of theological interpretation of the Bible.” See more about the Brazos Theological Commentary series.


The Gospel of Matthew (Socio-Rhetorical Bible Commentary) by Craig S. Keener

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Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Keener takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He is Arminian. Keener has multiple Matthew commentaries (see above and below). This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. Keener also wrote the 1-2 Corinthians commentary in the NCBC series. The publisher notes that the SRC series interprets Scripture “within the context of the world in which it was written and read.” See more about the Socio-Rhetorical Commentary series.


Matthew (IVP New Testament Commentary) by Craig S. Keener

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Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Keener takes an evangelical in approach to Scripture. He is Arminian. Keener has multiple Matthew commentaries (see above). This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. This volume is probably the most pastor-friendly of Keener’s Matthew commentaries. He also wrote the Galatians commentary in NCBC series. The publisher notes that the IVPNTC series is for “preachers, teachers, students and other individuals who want to dig deep into the heart of the New Testament.” See more about the IVP New Testament Commentary series.


Matthew (Understanding the Bible Commentary Series) by Robert Mounce

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Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Mounce takes an evangelical approach to Scripture. He was on the NIV, NLT, and ESV translation committees (d. 2019). His son is New Testament scholar, William Mounce, who is know for his 1-2 Timothy and Titus commentary in the WBC series. This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. The publisher notes that volumes in the UBCS series “breaks down the barriers between the ancient and modern worlds so that the power and meaning of the biblical texts become transparent to contemporary readers.” See more about the Understanding the Bible Commentary Series.


Technical Commentaries


The Gospel of Matthew (The New International Greek Testament Commentary) by John Nolland

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Theology, Audience, and Purpose: Nolland is an Anglican priest. He is Tutor in New Testament at Trinity College in Bristol, England. This commentary is best for readers who can follow a technical Greek commentary. Nolland wrote the Luke commentary in the WBC series. About the NIGTC series, the publisher notes, “at a time when the study of Greek is curtailed in many schools of theology, we hope that the NIGTC will demonstrate the continuing value of studying the Greek New Testament.” See more about the New International Greek Testament Commentary series.


Classic Christian Commentaries


Matthew (Ironside Expository Commentaries) by H.A. Ironside

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Synopsis: Regarding theology, Ironside pastored Moody Church in Chicago, Illinois, and helped popularize dispensationalism in the early 20th century. This commentary is best for individual study, devotional reading, Bible studies, and adult Sunday school classes. The publisher notes that H.A. Ironside (1876-1951) was an internationally acclaimed Bible teacher and preacher, as well as the author of more than sixty books.”


Matthew (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture) edited by Manlio Simonetti

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Synopsis: This commentary is best for expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, and experienced Bible readers. The publisher notes that “the vast array of writings from the church fathers—including much that is available only in the ancient languages—have been combed for their comment on Scripture…Each portion of commentary has been chosen for its salient insight, its rhetorical power, and its faithful representation of the consensual exegesis of the early church.” See more about the Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture series.


Are you a pastor?

On the page Matthew Commentaries for Pastors you find commentaries that uniquely designed for pastors in that they focus on application and spend less time on technical discussions.


Also see:

Compare 75 different commentary series on the Bible Commentary Series Comparison Chart


Footnotes:

  1. All dispensationalists view the dispensations as chronologically successive. Progressive dispensationalists, in addition to viewing the dispensations as chronologically successive, also view the dispensations as progressive stages in salvation history.