Matthew 2:5

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Matthew 2:5 is the fifth verse of the second chapter of the Gospel of Matthew in the New Testament. The magi have informed King Herod that they had seen portents showing the birth of the King of the Jews. Herod has asked the leading Jewish religious figures about how to find out where Jesus was to be born. In this verse they tell him.

In the King James Version of the Bible the text reads:

And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea:
for thus it is written by the prophet,

The World English Bible translates the passage as:

They said to him, "In Bethlehem of Judea,
for this is written through the prophet,

For a collection of other versions see BibRef Matthew 2:5

This verse mainly serves as a lead into the next one, which is a quote from Micah 5:2-4, and Micah is thus the prophet mentioned here. It is notable that Matthew does not use his usual introduction to a quote from the Old Testament. Normally Matthew introduces a quote with the phrase "so it might be fulfilled," while in this verse he integrates it into the dialogue.[1]

Gundry notes that the text again mentions that Bethlehem is in Judea, as does the next verse. This was previously noted in Matthew 2:1, and in theory the first mention was enough to disambiguate between the various towns named Bethlehem. To Gundry this is clear evidence of how important Jesus being born in Judea, at the centre of the Jewish world, was to Matthew and those he was writing for.[2]


  1. ^ Brown, Raymond E. The Birth of the Messiah: A Commentary on the Infancy Narratives in Matthew and Luke. London: G. Chapman, 1977.
  2. ^ Gundry, Robert H. Matthew a Commentary on his Literary and Theological Art. Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1982.

Preceded by
Matthew 2:4
Gospel of Matthew
Chapter 2
Succeeded by
Matthew 2:6
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