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Old 06-09-2001, 09:52 PM   #1
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Post How can Acts be dated late?

Acts is usually considered to be a largely legendary book (akin to the gospels) and is dated in the mid-to-late second century AD. However, I have never heard a satisfacory explanation for it's abrupt ending by anyone adhering to the view of it as a legendary document. The book ends suddenly, leaving Paul and his companions in Rome, "Boldly and without hinderance preach[ing] the kingdom of God and [teaching] about the Lord Jesus Christ". Paul is not martyred! Now, there can be no doubt that the early Christians glorified martyrdom and held that it was a thing to be honored. So, if Acts is legendary, why in the world wouldn't it's author/authors have tacked on a grand and glorious martyrdom of Paul? Furthermore, Paul and Peter are the two apostles concerning whose martyrdoms there is very little question among Biblical scholars from ANY school of Biblical Criticism. Even more inexplicable than the fact that the writer(s) fo Acts did not incorporate a legendary martyrdom is that Paul almost certainly WAS martyred, and yet that actual event is not recorded! I look forward to your responses, for on my own, I have been utterly unable to reconcile the legendary view of Acts with this fact.

matt
 
Old 06-10-2001, 02:05 AM   #2
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What have you read about the dating of Acts? Randel Helms, in Who Wrote the Gospels? presents a pretty convincing case that Acts is entirely fictional, whatever its date.

There may have been literary reasons for ending Acts with Paul still alive in Rome. Or the author may have intended a sequel, which was never written or has been lost.
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Old 06-10-2001, 04:51 PM   #3
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Thanks, Toto.

Should I take the lack of responses as evidence that Toto's is the only theory? Surely there are others! Maybe it's just that nobody likes me...*sniff*

Matt
 
 

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