Re: [Synoptic-L] Reading Matthew
- "It is the quoted words of Jesus that are particularly striking here: they are an almost perfect hybrid of the Lukan and Markan rewriting of Matthew’s text at this point. This cannot be intentional in a modern work that intends to be “reading Matthew” without reference to the other Synoptics. What it shows to me is that (1) while intending to put Matthew in one’s own words, it is possible, even today, to produce a text that resembles Luke’s and Mark’s original versions of Matthew’s account; and (2) while intending to paraphrase Matthew, it is possible to omit from Matthew precisely what we regard as characteristic Matthean phraseology."
Let me speak to that from an educational point of view. Can one say, with any certainty, that the author had never read Mark or Luke? The mind does a great job of conflating learned material. We don't even realize it, many times, because the most efficient way one learns is through "similarities and differences." We consciously and unconsciously seek comparison and contrast, between the unfamiliar and the familiar. When stored, we don't always make the fine distinctions between the materials, especially if they are extremely similar in content.
I do agree that "phraseology" is not the best way to determine priority, one way or the other. This seems to take the author's style out of the picture. And, these are writings of people, each encapsulating their own experiences and expertise, their baggage, within style. They were not just scribes. It seems a modern construct to look at an author's phrasing to determine which, of two similar passages, came first.
Dennis Dean Carpenter
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