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8227RE: [XTalk] Dating of Hebrews

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  • Stephen C. Carlson
    Sep 1, 2001
      At 03:44 PM 9/1/01 -0400, David C. Hindley wrote:
      >My statement was entirely based on mss evidence within the Pauline
      >corpus, while you are allowing other evidence. Of course, I am
      >assuming that because Hebrews is not associated with the three
      >collections which ultimately formed the basic 13 letter corpus, or
      >with the Praxapostolos, it is more likely that it was composed after
      >than before these collections. I concede that there is no absolute
      >surety in that assumption.

      I suppose that, in general, the later a letter is added to
      a letter the less likely it is to be genuine, and the more
      likely a letter is not genuine, the more likely it is later
      than genuine letters. That being said, I would not be
      content from reasoning about Hebrews' date merely from its
      entry into the Pauline letter collection. I'd want more.

      >Regarding 1 Clement, I am on the fence about it as a reliable primary
      >source. It seems to quote ACTS 20:35; 1 COR 02:09; HEB 01:03-04; JAS
      >01:08, 02:23; LUKE 06:36-38, MATT 06:12-15, 07:02; 2 PET 03:03-04; ROM
      >01:32, 12:05; and TIT 03:01, plus, it also seems to allude to COL
      >01:18; 1 COR 03:13, 12:12, 13:04, 15:20; HEB 13:17; JAS 02:21, 05:20;
      >LUKE 17:02; MARK 09:42; MATT 18:06, 26:24; 1 PET 02:17, 03:20,
      >04:08; 2 PET 02:05, 02:06-09; PHI 04:15; 1 THE 05:12-13; and 1 TIM
      >05:21. That indicates a much more intimate familiarity with NT
      >documents (it never seems to quote unknown gospels like Barnabas - 3
      >times!, Ignatius Smyrneans - I will ignore the additional one in the
      >longer Greek version of Ephesians, and Justin's apologies) than I
      >would feel comfortable with if it is truly a genuine (or at least
      >unadulterated) product of 90-100 CE, as it represents itself.

      I'm fairly content with the standard position on 1 Clement as c. 95.
      If it is spurious, I'd like to see a good Sitz im Leben for it.

      >As to the Shepherd, I was always under the impression that it was
      >almost completely free of any direct NT quotations. The phrases in the
      >Shepherd that resemble phrases in Hebrews are either echoes of phrases
      >from Jewish scriptures (3 of the 6 listed in the index to the Loeb
      >text in _Apostolic Fathers_, vol. II) or short phrases that may be
      >commonplace sayings shared by the writers of both documents (Vis
      >II.iii.2 "having broken away from the living God", Vis III.vii.2
      >"apostatise from the living God", both supposedly referring to Heb
      >3:12, and Sim IX.xix.2 "fruits of righteousness" which is supposed to
      >resemble the phrase in Heb 12:11 but is actually an exact match with
      >Phil 1:11). In all cases the wording would have to be pretty loose to
      >have actually been references to passages in Hebrews.

      The Shepherd's contacts are not so much literary but an attempt
      to get out of the theological bind Hebrews placed Christians in.

      >Also, the only
      >firm dating for this work is its listing in the Muratorian canon,
      >which dates it to about 148 CE, but there is question as to the
      >canon's own date and what the author of the canon meant by "quite
      >recently, in our own time," when ascribing its composition to the
      >brother of Pius, bishop of Rome.

      The dating of the Shepherd is complex because different parts of
      it appears to be composed at different time. However, I'm one
      of those who agree with Hahneman that the Muratorian canon is
      an early 4th century work and is not reliable on the date of the

      Stephen Carlson
      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
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