[Synoptic-L] re. Luke to Theophilus
- Dear Steve,I trust you don't mind my answering your wise letter in the synoptic list. My answer to John Lupia in which I mentioned you letter, was sent off before yours. I did not realize you had sent it directly to my E-mail address.
Thank you for your engaging epistle. You put your finger on the wound of NT
scholarship that is hard to heal if at all. The wound is the serious and
cutting lack of objective historical information on what we with a misnomer
call the 'Jesus' movement'. This is due to - I used the phrase before - the
deafening silence of Josephus concerning this - for christians - rather
With my remark re. studies of the Synoptic problem turned upside down, I
meant that no one, as far as I know, has claimed. that Luke's Gospel was
written at the end of the thirties!! You are right that Flusser prefers Luke
over the others. I will not go into detail . It is generally admitted that
Luke's Gospel contains passages closer to the original source than those of
Mark and Matthew. Flusser would certainly not date Luke's Gospel around 40
So I like your sceptic approach. However, a degree of insight into the
riddle of the 'New Testament' can be had by rigorous and broadly based
exegesis of the texts involved.
----- Original Message -----
From: spbranch2000 <spbranch@...>
Sent: Tuesday, November 04, 2003 2:46 AM
Subject: Re: Luke to Theophilus
> Greetings Karel.academic, have no advanced degree, and simply try to
> I am not an
> teach a bible studyat my church.
>serious manner on
> Thank you for for engaging Richard Anderson in a
> his proposal that Luke was written to the HighPriest.
> You made a statement in your Nov. 2 post:... "However,
> difficulties of equating Luke's Theophilus (a honorific title),and
> your dating of his Gospel and Acts are enormous, turningsynoptic
> scholarship upside down."with no right to comment, it seems like Synoptic
> As a total outsider,
> scholarship is quitediverse on the "Synoptic problem". The degree of
> consensus seems small.Marcan priority is dominant, yet scholars hold
> their own with Mattheanand Lucan priority views. David Flusser and
> R.L.Lindsey held to views ofLucan priority.
>and questions as to
> Then there are theories of non-canonical sources
> how many sources. And Q source constructions, andarguments against Q.
>Synoptic Gospels are "too
> The primary consensus seems to be the
> similar to be independent and too different tobe copied". Also there
> seems to be consensus that Hebrew as well asAramaic and Greek were
> living languages in 1st centuryPalestine.
>the field is in
> In sum, as an outsider, I have felt intuitively that
> need of a new paradigm. There seem to be too manyplausible
> positions. Not that Anderson's view is "the answer", yet theremight
> be a seed of reality to his basic "insight" that Theophilus wasthe
> High Priest. Linguistically, Luke probably is a combination workof
> Greek and underlying semetic work(s), if "Jerusalem School"scholars
> have a piece of the puzzel correct. This would suggestthat
> Anderson's "letter to the High Priest" is not our canonical Lukebut
> may be embedded there, in part or whole. But in this"bathwater" of Anderson's, there might be the baby of a new
> paradign.For instance, if Theophilus does represent the intended
> author of aletter, then the initial audience of the embedded letter
> is Jewish, notgentile as many commentators suggest for the
> canconical work. This couldhave the germ of a paradigm shift.
>Anderson's posts on Synoptic-L. Thank goodness
> I enjoy both your and
> for sincere, honestexchanges.
> Steve Branch.