At 04:19 4/29/98 -0400, Mahlon H. Smith wrote:
>Stephen C. Carlson wrote:
>> It stands to reason that a later evangelist would be
>> less inclined to rewrite the words of Jesus than another's
>> narrative, while, at the same time, it is easier to rearrange
>> sayings topically than narrative.
>By this standard, Stephen, Luke should be the most conservative of the
>synoptic writers when it comes to revising sayings of Jesus found in his
>alleged sources---that is, IF one accepts the traditional dating that
>places Luke after both Mark & Matthew.
Mahlon, in my statement I was attempting to contrast how a later
evangelist would handle Jesus' sayings of his source as compared
to his handling of the narrative material of his source. I did
not intend to make any suggestion that a later evangelist would
tend to be more conservative than an earlier evangelist in the
treatment of the sayings of Jesus.
As for your other points about why would Luke present a variant
to a saying that Matthew and Mark agree verbatim or even omit a
great amount of text where Matthew and Mark closely agree, I
will offer the standard rebuttal: Matthew and Mark were readily
available in Luke's community, so Luke felt no compulsion in
reproducing them, especially if there was other material he
wanted to use. [See H.T.Fleddermann, MARK & Q (Leuven: 1995) p.16
who uses this argument as a prototypical example why "general
arguments have limited usefulness."]
Luke's "Great Omission" of Mark (and Matthew?) is best explained
as a way reserving enough space on his scroll for the L (and Q?)
material. Furthermore, I doubt the technical feasibility of
comparing texts written in a continuous script to determine what
the verbatim agreement is. Like most ancient authors, Luke
oprobably found it much easier to deal with one source at a time.
(Tatian is hardly a counterexample, because the emerging canonicity
of the four Gospels in the mid to late second century provided ample
Stephen C. Carlson : Poetry speaks of aspirations,
: and songs chant the words.
: -- Shujing 2.35