Matthew, the Evangelist who wrote the Gospel that appears first in the New Testament, was different from the other Apostles. He was not a popular man. Many people felt that he was unworthy to be a chosen as a follower of Jesus. Matthew worked for the Romans as a tax collector. The Romans ruled Palestine and the Jewish people in the time of Jesus. They forced the Jewish people to pay taxes to them. Many of the tax collectors cheated the people by charging more taxes than required and keeping the extra money for themselves. The Jews considered tax collectors to be traitors.
St Matthew - Dome Mural
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