Synopticproblempaper

3222 words - 13 pages

Liberty University

THE SYNOPTIC PROBLEM

A paper submitted to PROFESSOR MONTE SHANKS
In partial fulfillment of the Requirements for
the course NBST 510

Liberty Theological seminary

By
Wilbert L. Bracey


Lynchburg, Virginia
February 1, 2014

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Introduction-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1
The Synoptic Problem-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------2
Markan Priority---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------3
Q ...view middle of the document...

But the TDH has not shaken off challenges from the older view that the earliest gospel was that of Matthew.” “All four Gospels reflect a common tradition about Jesus. But John is sharply distinguished in style, wording, structure, and especially theological emphasis. It may show knowledge of the synoptics; but the “Johannine problem” is a separate one.”
“The historical and the moral authority of any writing is always dependent upon the character of its author, and the position he describes or records, No writing in the world demands a clear presentation of authorship so much as do the Gospels upon which we rely for our conception of the Person of Christ. But directly when we ask, how these all important books came to be written, we are confronted with the difficulty that we have no contemporary writings which might have been expected to suggest to us the tremendous claim which the writings make upon the judgment and faith of men. When approaching the study of the Gospels, it is very important to purge our minds of all presuppositions that we may bring into focus.”
The Synoptic Problem
The word synoptic according to dictionary.com is, “of the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke) presenting the narrative of Christ’s life, ministry, etc from a point of view held in common by all three, and with close similarities in content, order, etc.” As early as 1960, there were biblical scholarships that, “claimed that the solution to the synoptic problem was one of the few issues of recent criticism: Matthew and Luke each used Mark along with a second shorter source designated Q (from the German Quell for source) for the non Markan material they shared.” And close to the end of the “1990” period, there were “scholar that claimed that this two-source hypothesis had been disapproved.” In 1924, “B.H. Streeter included two other documents that Matthew and Luke relied on written sources, designated M and L respectively, for much of the nonparalleled material in each of their narratives.” Now we will survey “the four source hypothesis separately in descending order of probability and acceptance.”

Markan Priority
“Surveys of the Gospels or of the life of Christ and the major commentaries on each of the Synoptics along with studies more focused on individual themes or passages within those Gospels, all presuppose that Matthew and Luke each used Mark.” There are at least nine reasons for this statement. “(1) Mark had some evidence that was the product of “eye witness testimony, that Matthew and Luke omit,” (2) Matthew and Luke seem to say in a softer touch what Mark said, (3) They “often omit potentially misleading details in Mark,” (4) Mark is the shortest of the Synoptics, yet with individual pericopae he is consistently longer than Matthew or Luke, an unlikely result of their later abbreviation, (5) Less than 10 percent of Mark is nonparalleled, (6) Comparatively Matthew and Luke rarely differ from Mark in the same way at the same time, whereas Mark...

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