Dear Prof. Kloppenborg Verbin,
Thank you very much for agreeing to participate in this
seminar discussion your most recent book. There is much to
commend in it. For example, I really enjoyed your chapter 6
as the best history of the synoptic problem I've ever read.
I would like to ask a question about your arguments for Q's
existence. You had previously proposed the following
argument for Q in your "Introduction," THE SHAPE OF Q:
Signal Essays on the Sayings Gospel (Minneapolis: Fortress
Press, 1994) 2:
"Evidence of design and deliberate structure serves not
only to expose the distinctive theology of Q; it turns
out to be relevant to a yet more basic issue, that of
the very existence of Q. . . . For it is exceedingly
unlike that a subset of materials mechanically
abstracted from two Gospels would display an inherent
genre and structure unless in fact that subset
substantially represented a discrete and independent
To me, this promises to be a powerful argument for Q, but
rather than seeing this point elaborated in EXCAVATING Q as
an affirmative argument for Q in your first chapter, it was
barely mentioned (e.g. p. 164 at the end of the third chapter).
Why was this argument deemphasized in your recent book?
Stephen C. Carlson mailto:scarlson@...
Synoptic Problem Home Page http://www.mindspring.com/~scarlson/synopt/
"Poetry speaks of aspirations, and songs chant the words." Shujing 2.35
This is the _Excavating Q_ Seminar (Oct. 23-Nov. 10 2000).
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