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Re: [textualcriticism] Luke-Acts or Luke and Acts

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  • Robert Relyea
    ... I think you have that backwards. The usual theory is scrolls had a finite practical limit, which is about the length which would old Matthew, Luke, or
    Message 1 of 2 , Jun 26, 2009
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      On 06/26/2009 05:37 AM, Mitch Larramore wrote:
      > My odd subject heading is intentional in that it illustrates, to some extent, my question. Of the older mss, is there any evidence that Luke and Acts ever formed a single, continuous volume? I think I've read where the two books were too long to be included in one codex. However, they could be joined in a scroll,
      I think you have that backwards. The usual theory is scrolls had a
      finite practical limit, which is about the length which would old
      Matthew, Luke, or Acts. The idea is that Luke and Acts may have been
      written in 2 volumes because that was the practical limits of a scroll.
      When the Christians started using the codex form, many older single
      scroll writings could be collected into a single book.
      > I suppose. Either way, I am just trying to find some evidence that Luke-Acts formed some kind of unit that differs from, for example, Matthew and Mark (two clearly separate letters), or differs from Luke having written Luke and Acts perhaps 30 years apart.

      The manuscript evidence is all post the development of the codex (even
      p52 and p90). There are no known manuscripts that include Luke and Acts
      together without the other gospels. Dr. Trobische has a list of early
      manuscripts that are clearly collections. The ones that include Luke or
      Acts are:

      p75 (II/III)- Luke and John (John follows Luke).
      p4 (II/III) - Possible Matthew and Luke. p4 includes the text of Luke
      and a fragment with the title Matthew. Some believe p64/p67 (Matthew)
      are part of this same manuscript (see Comfort). It's not clear what
      order Matthew and Luke fall into, nor if it includes any other books.
      p45 (III) - Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and Acts are all extant. Their
      order in the manuscript is unknown.
      p53 (III) - Matthew and Acts. (order and other books is unclear).

      This is all collection evidence before the 4th Century. Of course by the
      4th Century you have complete bibles (Vaticanus, Sinaiticus). The later
      collections usually groups Acts with the Catholic epistles, and Luke
      with the other gospels.

      So it's clear that the gospels were collected in the 4-fold collection
      pretty early, and the early evidence is that Acts was often included
      with the 4. There is no remaining external evidence that Luke and Acts
      circulated alone.
      > Again, I am not referring to the obvious introduction of Acts that tells us Luke wrote both books (just as Paul wrote both Romans and Ephesians, for example). I think I am somewhat envisioning Luke having originally written these two letters to Theophilos as one volume. Hope that makes sense.

      If that were the case, Luke would have had to write a codex (or write a
      scroll longer than is traditionally considered 'manageable'). The idea
      that Luke wrote both Luke and Acts at one sitting as 2 volumes sent
      together, however, is one of the possible reconstructions of the writing
      of the pair.

      > Mitch Larramore
      > Sugar Land, Texas
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