A Shoddy Literary Creation in the Gospel of Matthew Exposes a Jesus of Faith Who Never Was

Jesus is presented in the anonymous work known as the "Gospel of Matthew" (18: 15 – 18) instructing his disciples on how to reprove a sinful fellow believer:

15 “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. 16 But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. 17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church (ειπε τη εκκλησια). And if he refuses to listen even to the church (της εκκλησιας), let him be to you as the heathen / pagan (ο εθνικος) and the tax collector (ο τελωνης) [meaning those considered ceremonially unclean].

In these three verses we oddly find a Jewish Jesus lecturing his Jewish disciples on church discipline even though the out pouring of the Spirit on Pentecost (Acts 2 ) had not happened nor had Peter and John been driven from the Temple (Acts 4) as a precursor for the Church (εκκλησια), a word found twice within this pericope with only one other occurrence in Matthew 16: 18 . . . again by Jesus: “I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church (μου την εκκλησιαν); and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.”

The common scholarly view on Matthew 18: 17 is that the word church was anachronistically placed on the lips of Jesus by latter Christians to give this section divine ecclesiastical authority. But if this was indeed the case (being a later addition to this Gospel), then one would expect to have some earlier textual witnesses attested in a Greek uncials or at least some Greek minuscules. However, of the three times the word church is used in Matthew, not once are there any textual notes in the critical Greek Biblical texts indicating  an early manuscript has been found lacking this oddity such as we have for the Pericope de Adultera (John 7: 53 – 8: 11) or the longer ending(s) of Mark (16: 9 – 20).

Thus, what we find in this so-called Matthew’s Gospel is an original reading giving credence to a late date for the creation of a Jesus who is little more than a theological ploy used to advance this new sect.

In light of the fact that we have no textual witness for any Gospel before 180 CE (nor of the entire New Testament for that matter), plus the fact that this section is (textually) firmly established; we are left with a Jesus of Salvation History (Heilsgeshickte)who is little more than a late literary invention used to justify yet another Greco-Roman mystery religion.