[Synoptic-L] Re: A solution for consideration
- Dear Kym,
Thanks for your intriguing post on a possible solution to the Synoptic
problem. Your book certainly sounds as though it will be very interesting,
especially if you substantiate some of the speculations that I personally
find rather improbable. I just want to offer responses to some of your points.
You argue first of all for a very early dating of Revelation, which is
something I’ve not previously come across. This seems to be dependant upon
how one views the book of Revelation. If one wishes to read it as a vision,
then there are relatively few problems with the dating. A lack of any
particularly early manuscripts would be the only one that springs to mind
immediately. However, if it is a literary creation by an early church author
then the ideas expressed within Revelation would surely be too advanced,
particularly in relation to its high Christology.
Again your reconstruction of Paul’s Roman imprisonment, and subsequent
transfer to Ephesus, seem rather too unsubstantiated to leave unchallenged.
What evidence do you site for this theory? The idea that Peter wrote a
Gospel, and that Mark distributed and polished it, seems quite reasonable,
and again the dating doesn’t pose any significant problems.
Also your early dating of John’s Gospel is somewhat plausible, and off-hand I
can certainly think of a couple of scholars who would agree with an early
dating (Carson, for one). The Rylands fragment of the Gospel, and its early
dating add weight to this proposal. John’s complex theology may cause some p
roblem, although your linking of Paul with John would perhaps go some way
to explaining this. I have certainly noticed some similarities between the
theology of\ John, and that of Paul (if one can talk about a single theology
of Paul!). The corporate authorship sounds somewhat plausible, although the
unity of style and ideology contained in the Gospel might work against this.
If one can go that far with your proposal, then I think that the final part,
relating Luke and Matthew to Mark, John and John’s unused material, is quite
plausible. The only comment I would make about that is the assumption that
Luke was written for a Gentile audience, which I would strongly disagree
with. Luke has so many allusions to Old Testament passages, and Jewish
concepts, which would be lost on a Gentile audience, that I find this
proposal highly unlikely.
Overall, I would say that the theory is very interesting, though I really
would like to hear more substantiation for the points that I have highlighted
above. Thanks again.
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