Some argue that the Bible is contradictory concerning whether the tax collector was named Matthew or Levi. The argument is that Matthew 9:9 says that the tax collector’s name was Matthew, but Mark 2:14 and Luke 5:27 say that the tax collector’s name was Levi. However, the solution to this alleged contradiction in the Bible is extremely simple.
Scriptures – Was the Tax Collector Named Matthew or Levi?
The Tax Collector’s Name Was Matthew
As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he rose and followed him.Matthew 9:9
The Tax Collector’s Name Was Levi
And as he passed by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he rose and followed him.Mark 2:14
After this he went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax booth. And he said to him, “Follow me.”Luke 5:27
The Answer – Was the Tax Collector Named Matthew or Levi?
Matthew Was His Greek Name, Levi Was His Hebrew Name
The solution to this alleged contradiction is simple: Matthew and Levi were two different names for the same person. Matthew was his Greek name and Levi was his Hebrew name.
This is similar to Simon, who was also called Peter:
While walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen.Matthew 4:18
More Answers to “Contradictions” in the Bible
To read more answers to alleged and apparent contradictions in the Bible, see “Contradictions” in the Bible Answered.
These books are also excellent resources: