Matthew Thiessen, «Abolishers of the Law in Early Judaism and Matthew 5,17-20», Vol. 93 (2012) 543-556
Three times within Matt 5,17-20 passage Matthew uses the verb (kata)lu/w, signaling its importance. Consequently, I will focus on two historical events around which these words cluster: the Antiochan persecution and the destruction of the Temple. Since Jewish literature characterizes the Hellenizers of the Maccabean period as law abolishers, labeling a group as such implicated it in endangering the nation. As Josephus’ Jewish War demonstrates, after the Jewish Revolt, law abolishers were blamed for the Temple’s destruction. Thus, Matthew addresses the charge that Jesus abolished the law and, in so doing, brought about the destruction of the Temple.