RE: [GPG] Lukan Authorial Strategy
I agree with you. We have a direct statement in extant mss that appears to
be largely ignored, or perhaps treated as false. This is the only
explanation I can see for continuing belief in synoptic solutions that deny
additional sources. However, what I trying to do was to say that even if
'many' was as few as three, then my arguments below are still valid.
My personal view on this issue (supported by basically no direct evidence)
is that 'many' really does mean what the most 'obvious' reading suggests.
Some time ago I wrote the following (for a non-scholarly audience):
"We can be pretty certain that Jesus was not followed around by a camera
crew, recording every event of his ministry, so how can we be sure that what
we believe are eyewitness records ("Jesus said.") captured what really took
place, and how can we know the form in which those records were originally
kept? Was any of Jesus' life actually written about as it was happening? At
what point did Jesus become a sufficiently remarkable figure to warrant his
deeds and sayings being captured in MS form? It seems likely that some of
the early events were captured by 'interviews' conducted some time after the
fact, but towards the end of Jesus' life it is possible, even likely, that
several people were writing down significant events more or less directly as
I think the above is much more likely than supposing that no-one was 'taking
notes' about what this charismatic teacher was doing, and that the whole
tradition was created by just 3 or 4 writers (aMk, aMt, aLk, aJn) some time
From: Chuck Jones [mailto:chuckjonez@...]
Sent: Monday, June 19, 2006 10:33 AM
To: David @ Comcast
Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org; 'Synoptic'
Subject: RE: [GPG] Lukan Authorial Strategy
I should clarify what lay behind my question. I understand the scholarly
reasons for creating economical solutions to the synoptic problem, i.e., for
positing as few sources as the observed literary phenomena suggest.
But I stay somewhat amazed that we have a passage from a synoptic writer
telling us how he did his work, in which he mentions "many" accounts, and
that datum--the only *direct* information about synoptic sources we
So I think Lk had many sources. That seems to me to be more--ahem, many
more--than 2 or 3. That was where I was coming from.
"David @ Comcast" <davidinglis2@...> wrote:
Chuck Jones wrote: How did "many" accounts become two or three?
I didn't write "two or three." I wrote "at least two," because my aim was to
show that aLk knew of a plurality of sources, not any specific number. If
anything, my argument works better for "at least three" sources, because
then at least one of those sources *cannot* have been Mk or Mt.
As I see it:
Assuming Lk -> Mt -> Mk or Lk -> Mk -> Mt (and any variations involving
other sources), then aLk's statement indicates at least two (and most likely
at least three) sources that were not Mt or Mk.
Assuming Mt -> Lk -> Mk or Mk -> Lk -> Mt (and any variations involving
other sources), then aLk's statement indicates at least one (and most likely
at least two) other sources that were not Mt or Mk.
Assuming Mk -> Mt -> Lk or Mt -> Mk -> Lk (and any variations involving
other sources), then aLk's statement most likely indicates at least one
other source that was not Mt or Mk.
Therefore, it appears to me that any synoptic solution in which we have Lk
-> Mt -> Mk, Lk -> Mk -> Mt, Mt -> Lk -> Mk, or Mk -> Lk -> Mt, and no other
sources, should be rejected.
Extending the above slightly, and re-formulating it, the only solutions in
which aLk could possibly have used only Mk and Mt as sources are Mk -> Mt ->
Lk and Mt -> Mk -> Lk. However, if "many" is taken to be "at least three"
then even this solution does not work.
Therefore, I would be interested in seeing arguments to refute the above the
above conclusions. In particular, is there *any* evidence that aLk could
have been referring to only two sources, rather than at least three?
Note: I have deliberately not mentioned Jn in any of the above, but this
does not prevent Jn (or an early version of Jn) being one of the sources.
Lafayette, CA, USA
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