Reading Matthew as a Jewish Gospel that charts a law-observant alternative to the Pauline mission leads us into the conflicts that defined the emerging Jesus movement. Apostolic leadership, observance of the law, and the gentile mission were defining issues, and each tradition had its partisan advocates. The First Evangelist was strategically situated, probably in Antioch, where the Mattheans debated with Pharisees, Mark, and some Paulinists. Matthew’s relationship to proponents of Q, James, John, the Didache, and Ignatius fill out the picture. By peering through a Matthean lens, we gain a fresh appreciation for the strident voices that lie behind our canonical writings.