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RE: [Synoptic-L] Are Luke and Acts by the same Author?

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  • David C. Hindley
    Peter Kirby, ... of single author? Contrarily, is there any internal evidence that would render them asunder or suggest a revision of Luke by the author of
    Message 1 of 3 , Jul 1, 2001
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      Peter Kirby,

      >>So what is the evidence that ties Luke and Acts together as the work
      of single author? Contrarily, is there any internal evidence that
      would render them asunder or suggest a revision of Luke by the author
      of Acts?<<

      Your inquiry made me think of an essay I had read some years ago, and
      which I just recently rediscovered. In volume 1 of _Christianity,
      Judaism and Other Greco-Roman Cults_ (ed. J. Neusner, Brill, 1975),
      Pierson Parker contributed "The Kinship of John and Acts" (pages

      While acknowledging that the language and style of Acts resembles
      Luke, and the words about "the former treatise" in Acts 1:1 do seem to
      connect the books, he reflects that "yet, in their reflections of
      early Christian thought, and supremely in what they say about Jesus,
      *John and Acts are closer to each other* than either of them is to
      Luke's Gospel. Their agreements together against Matthew and Mark are
      stronger still. That is to say, for all their differences of language
      and of topic, John and Acts are akin." (pg. 187)

      He cites agreements about Jesus' career, agreements about Jesus'
      message, agreements in the author's own viewpoints, paralleled stories
      and common omissions. When these relationships are analyzed, he infers
      that the "chief links between John and Acts lie evidently in the realm
      of concepts, or common background and inherited attitudes." He readily
      concedes, though, that Acts' literary links are to Luke. He concludes
      that "John and Acts evidently reflect that form of Jewish Christianity
      that was known and practiced in the Roman province of Judea." (pg.

      "Apparently this [Judean] Christianity knew little or nothing of
      Jesus' parables [in contrast, it seems, to Galilean Christians]; or
      that he foretold his own resurrection -- though it proclaimed that
      resurrection itself." (pg 204) It looks as though Parker conceives
      that they believed Jesus was Messiah, of the seed of David, a
      messiahship confirmed by the miracles and signs God worked through
      him. Jesus was Judge, and will usher in the Last Day. After his death,
      they rallied around Peter and a few chosen disciples who proclaimed
      that Jesus had risen from the dead, and found confirmation of this
      course of events in scripture. (pg. 205)

      Although Parker did not specifically state it, I think he is asking us
      to question how Acts can be linked to Luke stylistically and by
      language, but simultaneously have a close affinity with concepts,
      common background and inherited attitudes found in John. All this does
      tend to raise questions in my mind, but I do not (yet) know what to
      make of it.


      Dave Hindley
      Cleveland, Ohio, USA

      Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
      List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
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