FRDB Archives

Freethought & Rationalism Archive

The archives are read only.


Go Back   FRDB Archives > Archives > Biblical Criticism - 2001
Welcome, Peter Kirby.
You last visited: Today at 05:55 AM

Notices

 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 12-05-2001, 06:55 AM   #1
CX
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Portlandish
Posts: 2,829
Post How do we know the gospels are late 2nd hand accounts?

In another thread the following exchange takes place.

>>All we have are 2nd hand accounts written many >>years after the fact.

>>What is your evidence to support this belief >>please?

The bible for one thing. Even accepting the traditional view GMk was written by someone who knew Peter in the 50's or 60's. GLk was written by a companion of Paul (who was not an eyewitness to the events protrayed) and the author makes it clear that he is writing an account as an historian using written sources and oral tradition right there in the first chapter. So there's 2 of the 4 gospels being late 2nd hand accounts.

Now we come to Matthew. There is the tradition that GMt was written by Levi (called Matthew) the tax collector who was a follower of Jesus according to the gospel accounts. However we have no mention of this until Eusebius quotes a no longer extant document from Papias wherein all Papias says is that Matthew wrote something in Hebrew which was later interpreted by others.

The main problem I have with Matthean authorship of GMt is tied up in the synoptic problem. Furthermore the only claim we have that GMt was written by Matthew comes from Church Fathers at a time when they needed apostolic authority to distinguish their scriptures from those of the Gnostics which were proliferating at the time. There is no biblical reference to any authors of the gospels, plus there is enough evidence for literary borrowing to make one rationally justified that at least some of the gospel texts are based on other gospel texts.
CX is offline  
Old 12-05-2001, 07:51 AM   #2
CX
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Portlandish
Posts: 2,829
Post

Errata: The first mention of Matthew as the author of a hebrew gospel is by Iraeneus (who quotes from Papias) c. 185 C.E. with Eusebius citing Papias around 300 C.E.
CX is offline  
Old 12-05-2001, 10:37 AM   #3
Storm and Stress
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: California
Posts: 60
Post

Gospel John has not been mentioned yet. Now John uses the word "I" throughout his Gospel. He was there at the cross, the tomb, the last supper. He even left Peter out in the courtyard, to sneak in
and listen to the trial of Jesus.

So we have what appears to be a primary source of
the life of Jesus.

Except, that if John started following Jesus as a young man. Lets say 20, and I am being generous, and the gospel was written at 90 AD, (the Catholic Ency. puts it at 96 A.D. or a few years after!). This means that John is what, how old?
That makes him about 80. Of course Socrates was 70 at his trial and still quick and witty. And Pope John Paul is still writing in his advanced years.

But how much of what John is writing is factual memory, embellished, or spin. He had just composed
Revelation during his exile on Patomas, and somwhere in Asia composes John.

Well, either he has an incredible memory or he is remembering uh, as best he can.
Storm and Stress is offline  
Old 12-05-2001, 10:44 AM   #4
ex-preacher
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: University of Arkansas
Posts: 1,033
Post

Quote:
Originally posted by Storm and Stress:
<strong>Gospel John has not been mentioned yet. Now John uses the word "I" throughout his Gospel. He was there at the cross, the tomb, the last supper. He even left Peter out in the courtyard, to sneak in
and listen to the trial of Jesus.</strong>
Please give me a chapter and verse where the author of John uses the first person ("I" or "we"), other than as a quote. The closest I can find in John 21:24: "This is the disciple who testifies to these things and who wrote them down. We know his testimony is true." So someone else wrote a comment saying that "this disciple" (unnamed) wrote these things. Most scholars now agree that John was not written by an eyewitness. Even some conservatives, such as the author of the Word Biblical Commentary, also agree.
ex-preacher is offline  
Old 12-05-2001, 11:11 AM   #5
Storm and Stress
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: California
Posts: 60
Post

I am sorry ex preacher, I should have made myself more clear. John as you know, constantly identifies himself as "the diciple" who most Jesus most loved.

He uses this phrase or part of it, to say that it is him. John 15:18....leaves Peter in courtyard to hear trial. John 19:26, 27..again using the phrase diciple/who he loved, at the cross.

John 19:35..John or whoever wrote John, claims eyewitness account of soldier peircing side.

John 20:2-4..the diciple whom Jesus loved (aka John), and Peter run to see the empty tomb. John can't bare to go in, so Peter does.

John 21:24: Final declaration of being present or having knowledge of the events described by John.

The question becomes then was it John or another diciple, who refers to himself as an eyewitness to the above events.
Storm and Stress is offline  
Old 12-05-2001, 12:28 PM   #6
CX
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Portlandish
Posts: 2,829
Post

I am not as knowledgable on the Johannine tradition as that of the synoptics, but there are a few things to consider here. It seems clear that the author of John is working within the tradition of John, son of zebedee, but there is no reason to suppose that the gospel was actually written by that John. It further seems clear that the same John wrote the gospel and the epistles, but I think most scholars agree that a different John wrote the revelation. In fact the revelation was disputed by the church fathers for centuries and was not accepted in the eastern orthodox church until long after it had been canonized in the catholic church.

There is really little evidence, but we can suppose it to be the Presbyter John that Papias talks about, though Papias is somewhat unreliable and his writings come to us as citations in much later Church fathers. It is possible that the gospel was written by Presbyter John from the recollections of John, son of Zebedee when he was in his dotage, but even that is unproveable. Furthermore it seems clear that the material in GJn has been reworked to fit the theological program of the author that casts Jesus as the logos of the Gnostic mythos. The influence of gnosticism is seen throughout the gospel and it is entirely different than the synoptics in literary style and somewhat different theologically.
CX is offline  
Old 12-05-2001, 06:05 PM   #7
offa
Regular Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Monroeville, Ohio, USA
Posts: 440
Post

offa; Barbara Thiering has me convinced that John was the first gospel written and that it was written before Saul of Tarsus shows up in AD 38.
offa is offline  
Old 12-05-2001, 06:40 PM   #8
Sauron
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: In the dark places of the world
Posts: 8,093
Post

Quote:
Originally posted by ex-preacher:
<strong>

Please give me a chapter and verse where the author of John uses the first person ("I" or "we"), other than as a quote. </strong>
Not to be picky, but there's one more, in the next verse:

JOH 21:25 And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.
Sauron is offline  
Old 12-05-2001, 06:50 PM   #9
CX
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Portlandish
Posts: 2,829
Post

Quote:
Originally posted by offa:
<strong>offa; Barbara Thiering has me convinced that John was the first gospel written and that it was written before Saul of Tarsus shows up in AD 38.</strong>
How nice for you. Is this meant to be an argument if so it is one from authority. Years of study of the synoptic gospels, Koine Greek, the synoptic problem and general NT studies, including the work of Burton Mack, Dom Crossan, Udo Schnelle, Raymond Borwn and others leads me to conclude that the chronology is Pauline and Pseudo-pauline epistles, GMk, GMt&GLk, GJn. Is my argument from authority better than yours?
CX is offline  
Old 12-07-2001, 03:09 PM   #10
offa
Regular Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Monroeville, Ohio, USA
Posts: 440
Post

offa; Is there a mention of the Jewish/Roman war of A.D. 70 in the gospels and Acts? Obviously they were written prior to this war.

You find me a "virgin" in the bible that is not a Hebrew, or, find me any place in the bible where it says his feet were pierced, then I will believe.

thanks, offa
offa is offline  
 

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:24 PM.

Top

This custom BB emulates vBulletin® Version 3.8.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.