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[XTalk] Luke and John

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  • Brian Trafford
    ... I am not adverse to considering the possibility of prior or earlier sources for the Gospels, but tend to prefer accepting direct dependence over
    Message 1 of 2 , May 28, 2003
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      --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, Emmanuel Fritsch
      <emmanuel.fritsch@i...> wrote:
      > - You do not believe that there was a proto-Luke
      > - Then you fall on a problem of reversibility.
      >
      > Logical answer :
      >- If a detail A1 in Luke looks rather as a source to John A2
      >account, - and if a detail B1 in John looks rather as a source to
      >Luke A2 account, then the best (and most economical) solution is
      >given by a proto-gospel, where A and B where present in their
      >genuine form, rather than an alledged but often acrobatic
      >reversibility.

      I am not adverse to considering the possibility of prior or earlier
      sources for the Gospels, but tend to prefer accepting direct
      dependence over hypothetical sources as more parsimonious. I suppose
      the natural question is to ask first what you consider proto-Luke to
      look like. After all, I do accept the existence of special "L"
      material as found in Luke and Acts, but see little reason to accept
      that John would have known "L" without also knowing Luke. If proto-
      Luke is much broader than "L" however, then the question becomes how
      much does it look like Canonical Luke?

      In any case, in the specific instance of the presence of the verb
      SUNETEQEINTO (and its variants) in John 9:22, Luke 22:5, Acts 23:10
      and Acts 24:9, I do not see how positing a common source like
      proto-Luke helps answer the question of dependence nor direction of
      dependence. This is why I offered what seemed most reasonable at the
      time, that the most plausible conclusion is that Luke saw the word in
      John, liked it (found it "pleasing"), and used it on three separate
      occasions in his own works (none of which were connected to the
      healing of the blind man in John 9, of course, as Luke does not
      mention this miracle at all). As this has been a work in progress
      for me, however, I have, since my last post, looked into the LXX, and
      found a potential candidate for Lucan dependence. In Daniel 2:9 we
      find "...for you have agreed (SUNEQESQE) together to speak lying and
      corrupt words..." Given Luke's frequent use of LXX terminology
      throughout his work, and the similarity in context between Daniel's
      story and Luke's account of the payment to Judas AND Paul's arrest
      (all three accounts focus on agreement to commit acts of lying and
      betrayal), it seems both plausible and probable to argue that he is
      dependent on the LXX for his choice of verb here as well.

      The question that remains, then, is whether or not John could have
      used Luke/Acts, or if he would have also drawn on the LXX version of
      Daniel. What I do not see, however, is a reason to complicate
      matters by postulating that John used proto-Luke instead.
      Interestingly, John's story is also one in which the agreed to action
      is one of treachery, fitting nicely with the usage in Daniel and Luke.

      I wrote:
      > > Raymond Brown discusses this in _Death of the Messiah_, but never
      > > concludes that dependence exists in either direction.

      Emmanuel asked:
      > What does he conclude ?
      > An oral tradition ? Even for common vocabulary ?

      He leans towards dependence on common sources, though in this
      specific instance, John 9:22 is not found in John's Passion Narrative
      (PN), and is therefore not discussed at all.

      > Am sorry : what is PN ?

      My apologies. It is the abbreviated form for Passion Narrative.

      I wrote:
      >In this specific instance, for example, a more plausible suggestion
      >is that Luke found the verb to be pleasing in John, and decided to
      >use it at appropriate points in his stories of Jesus (In GLuke) and
      >later of Paul (in Acts). Less likely is the chance that John saw it
      >in Luke (and Acts?), and liked it enough to use it once. Since we
      >already have examples of Luke making use of "Luke pleasing"
      >phraseology found in Matthew (or Q, if you prefer),

      Emmanuel replied:
      > I prefer lukan-like phraseology in Matthew comming from
      > a proto-Luke. Whatever the case, the absence of consensus
      > on synoptic problem should forbid us to ground our analysis
      > on two source hypothesis or any other theory.

      Disagreements about the nature of pre-Gospel sources are often at the
      heart of many difficulties. For what it is worth, I accept the
      Farrer Hypothesis (FH) as it is defended in Mark Goodacre's book,
      _The Case Against Q_, leading me to consider Lucan phraseology found
      in Matthew to be derived directly from Matthew. I do not consider
      this to be central to this particular discussion in any case,
      however, as it matters little if the 2DH or the FH (or Griesbach for
      that matter!) are more probable. The issue at stake here is whether
      or not Luke knew of John, or vice versa, and if dependence is
      probable, the direction of that dependence. The case of John
      9:22/Luke 22:5/Acts 23:10/24:9 is obviously too limited to answer
      such a complex question, but it is certainly one of the pieces in
      that puzzle.

      I have already been referred off list to _In Dialogue With Another
      Gospel?: The Influence of the Fourth Gospel on the Passion Narrative
      of the Gospel of Luke_ , by Mark Matson. This, and other books on
      possible Luke/John connections would be of great interest to me.

      Thanks again for your reply Emmanuel.

      Brian Trafford
      Calgary, AB, Canada
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