Minor agreements against gMark

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Bernard Muller
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Minor agreements against gMark

Post by Bernard Muller » Sat Oct 17, 2020 10:16 am

According to Wikipedia "Q source" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Q_source
While the two-source hypothesis remains the most popular explanation for the synoptic gospels' origins, the existence of the "minor agreements" has raised serious concerns. These minor agreements are those points where Matthew and Luke agree against or beyond Mark precisely within their Markan verses (for example, the mocking question at the beating of Jesus, "Who is it that struck you?" [Luke 22:64/Matthew 26:68], found in both Matthew and Luke but not in Mark, although this "minor agreement" falls outside the usually accepted range of Q.) The "minor agreements" call into question the proposition that Matthew and Luke knew Mark but not each other,
..."minor agreements" against Mark. Some 198 instances involve one word, 82 involve two words, 35 three, 16 four, and 16 instances involve five or more words in the extant texts of Matthew and Luke as compared to Markan passages.
On my web page on Q http://historical-jesus.info/q.html, I addressed four of these minor agreements, which at the time, were considered the most problematic:
Four specific minor agreements between GMatthew and GLuke against GMark are often mentioned as a reason "Luke" knew about Matthew's gospel. They are the parable of the mustard seed (already addressed), "Nazara" (Mt4:13, Lk4:16), "Who is the one who struck You?" (Mt26:68, Lk22:64), and the parable of the talents/minas (Mt25:14-30, Lk19:11-27)
Can a member of this forum provide a list of these 198 minor agreements, or at least the ones with more that four consecutive words?

Does anyone counteracted these minor agreements?

Cordially, Bernard

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Re: Minor agreements against gMark

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sat Oct 17, 2020 10:58 am

Bernard Muller wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 10:16 am
On my web page on Q http://historical-jesus.info/q.html, I addressed four of these minor agreements, which at the time, were considered the most problematic:
Four specific minor agreements between GMatthew and GLuke against GMark are often mentioned as a reason "Luke" knew about Matthew's gospel. They are the parable of the mustard seed (already addressed), "Nazara" (Mt4:13, Lk4:16), "Who is the one who struck You?" (Mt26:68, Lk22:64), and the parable of the talents/minas (Mt25:14-30, Lk19:11-27)
Can a member of this forum provide a list of these 198 minor agreements, or at least the ones with more than four consecutive words?
I do not have the complete and exact list you are looking for, but the classic treatment which modern scholars use is that of Frans Neirynck, The Minor Agreements of Matthew of Luke and Mark with a Cumulative List, which is not, to my knowledge, available online (but which is also not extremely expensive to buy from Amazon or the like).

Neirynck regarded many of the minor agreements to be of no real concern, but he identified others as more significant. These significant agreements have been dealt with by various people in various ways, and one of the easiest to access is Testing Neirynck's List of Significant Minor Agreements, by Christopher J. Monaghan, available as a PDF online. The appendices are where the agreements are tabulated (in Greek, of course). The real purpose of the tabulation is to compare treatments by different scholars and works, but it also serves as a list of probably the most significant of the agreements, as well as many less significant. It can be handy, too, to read in brief how different scholars have treated each of the more significant agreements.
Does anyone counteracted these minor agreements?
Not definitively. They are explained by different people in different ways, including Lucan knowledge of Matthew, the existence either of a proto-Mark or of a deutero-Mark from which Matthew and Luke drew (instead of from our canonical Mark), oral tradition, scribal harmonization, phrases having dropped out of Mark which were originally there (and copied by Matthew and Luke), and many more.

You can always read Streeter's classic treatment of a lot of them. I would also recommend Horae Synopticae by Hawkins, who preceded Streeter. But there are plenty of others since those two who have taken the task in hand. Look up Goulder, Tuckett, Goodacre, and Stein, for example.

I would also mention that the very notion of "minor agreements" as a discrete category has been questioned, especially by scholars of the Farrer camp. The argument is that there is really a spectrum of Matthew-Luke agreement against Mark ranging from pure Q pericopes, through Mark-Q overlaps, down through what might be termed "major agreements," and then finally to "minor agreements." Treating these agreements in piecemeal categories already suggests that one is thinking in terms of the Two-Source Theory right from the start, which could bias the outcome.

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Re: Minor agreements against gMark

Post by Bernard Muller » Sat Oct 17, 2020 5:30 pm

Thank you Ben,
I am still trying to digest what Monaghan & Streeter wrote. I am still under the impression these so-called minor agreements can be explained without doubting about the past existence of a Q document,
However I am very concerned when Streeter flagged 8 cases where there is agreement between gMatthew, gLuke and gJohn against gMark. Did "John" knew also about gLuke or gMatthew when he wrote the initial version of his gospel (when I claimed "John" knew only gMark).
More study required: maybe "John" already knew about gLuke from the very beginning?

Cordially, Bernard

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Re: Minor agreements against gMark

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sat Oct 17, 2020 5:57 pm

Bernard Muller wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 5:30 pm
Thank you Ben,
I am still trying to digest what Monaghan & Streeter wrote. I am still under the impression these so-called minor agreements can be explained without doubting about the past existence of a Q document.
Just out of curiosity, how do you explain something like this?

Matthew 13.11: 11 ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς ὅτι, Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια τῆς βασιλείας τῶν οὐρανῶν, ἐκείνοις δὲ οὐ δέδοται.

Mark 4.11: 11 καὶ ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς· Ὑμῖν τὸ μυστήριον δέδοται τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ θεοῦ, ἐκείνοις δὲ τοῖς ἔξω ἐν παραβολαῖς τὰ πάντα γίνεται.

Luke 8.10a: 10a ὁ δὲ εἶπεν· Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ θεοῦ, τοῖς δὲ λοιποῖς ἐν παραβολαῖς.

M: Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τ μυστήρια. / To you it has been given to know the mysteries.

K: Ὑμῖν τμυστήριον δέδοται. / To you the mystery has been given.

L: Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τ μυστήρια. / To you it has been given to know the mysteries.

If Matthew and Luke are independent, then both of them did the following independently:
  1. They both turned the singular, "the mystery," into the plural, "the mysteries."
  2. They both moved "it has been given" in front of the mystery/mysteries instead of after it/them.
  3. They both added "to know" as an infinitive complement of "given."
The result is that this phrase winds up identical in Matthew and Luke, but not in Mark. How likely is this kind of convergence of independent editing, in your opinion? Or do y (Not a rhetorical question.) Or do you explain it in some other way?

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Re: Minor agreements against gMark

Post by MrMacSon » Sat Oct 17, 2020 9:41 pm

Mark Goodacre has made Q olde news and redundant.

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Re: Minor agreements against gMark

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Sun Oct 18, 2020 4:28 am

Bernard Muller wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 10:16 am
On my web page on Q http://historical-jesus.info/q.html, I addressed four of these minor agreements, which at the time, were considered the most problematic:
Four specific minor agreements between GMatthew and GLuke against GMark are often mentioned as a reason "Luke" knew about Matthew's gospel. They are the parable of the mustard seed (already addressed), "Nazara" (Mt4:13, Lk4:16), "Who is the one who struck You?" (Mt26:68, Lk22:64), and the parable of the talents/minas (Mt25:14-30, Lk19:11-27)
...
Does anyone counteracted these minor agreements?
Tim Widowfield made a good case against "Who is the one who struck You?" as a minor agreement.

btw
Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:
Tue Sep 16, 2014 1:04 am
DCHindley wrote:Personally, I do not understand all the hand wringing and outright fear the Q hypotheses seems to evoke in folks. There is nothing ill-defined in the theory that a common document lies behind the rather strikingly similar double tradition material of Matthew and Luke. "Minor agreements" do not negate the strong and sometimes verbatim similarities.
I agree in principle. However, there are examples of "minor agreements" which put Q completely in question. Let me give an example.

Mark 2 Matt 12 Luke 6 Commentary
23 Καὶ ἐγένετο αὐτὸν ἐν τοῖς σάββασιν παραπορεύεσθαι διὰ τῶν σπορίμων, καὶ οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ ἤρξαντο ὁδὸν ποιεῖν τίλλοντες τοὺς στάχυας.
23 One Sabbath he was going through the grainfields, and as they made their way, his disciples began to pluck heads of grain
1 Ἐν ἐκείνῳ τῷ καιρῷ ἐπορεύθη ὁ Ἰησοῦς τοῖς σάββασιν διὰ τῶν σπορίμων· οἱ δὲ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ ἐπείνασαν καὶ ἤρξαντο τίλλειν στάχυας καὶ ἐσθίειν.
1 At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain and to eat.
1 Ἐγένετο δὲ ἐν σαββάτῳ διαπορεύεσθαι αὐτὸν διὰ σπορίμων, καὶ ἔτιλλον οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ καὶ ἤσθιον τοὺς στάχυας ψώχοντες ταῖς χερσίν.
1 On a Sabbath, while he was going through the grainfields, his disciples plucked and ate some heads of grain, rubbing them in their hands.
Matt & Luke added the eating of the grain
24 καὶ οἱ Φαρισαῖοι ἔλεγον αὐτῷ, Ἴδε τί ποιοῦσιν τοῖς σάββασιν ὃ οὐκ ἔξεστιν;
24 And the Pharisees were saying to him, “Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath?”
2 οἱ δὲ Φαρισαῖοι ἰδόντες εἶπαν αὐτῷ, Ἰδοὺ οἱ μαθηταί σου ποιοῦσιν ὃ οὐκ ἔξεστιν ποιεῖν ἐν σαββάτῳ.
2 But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, “Look, your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath.”
2 τινὲς δὲ τῶν Φαρισαίων εἶπαν, Τί ποιεῖτε ὃ οὐκ ἔξεστιν τοῖς σάββασιν;
2 But some of the Pharisees said, “Why are you doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath?”
Matt & Luke used Mark´s “ἔλεγον“ in the form of „εἶπαν”
25 καὶ λέγει αὐτοῖς, Οὐδέποτε ἀνέγνωτε τί ἐποίησεν Δαυὶδ ὅτε χρείαν ἔσχεν καὶ ἐπείνασεν αὐτὸς καὶ οἱ μετ᾽ αὐτοῦ,
25 And he said to them, “Have you never read what David did, when he was in need and was hungry, he and those who were with him:
3 ὁ δὲ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς, Οὐκ ἀνέγνωτε τί ἐποίησεν Δαυὶδ ὅτε ἐπείνασεν καὶ οἱ μετ᾽ αὐτοῦ,
3 He said to them, “Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, and those who were with him:
3 καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς πρὸς αὐτοὺς εἶπεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς, Οὐδὲ τοῦτο ἀνέγνωτε ὃ ἐποίησεν Δαυὶδ ὅτε ἐπείνασεν αὐτὸς καὶ οἱ μετ᾽ αὐτοῦ [ὄντες],
3 And Jesus answered them, “Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, he and those who were with him:
Matt & Luke skipped Mark´s “David was in need” and used Mark´s “λέγει“ in the form of „εἶπεν”
26 πῶς εἰσῆλθεν εἰς τὸν οἶκον τοῦ θεοῦ ἐπὶ Ἀβιαθὰρ ἀρχιερέως καὶ τοὺς ἄρτους τῆς προθέσεως ἔφαγεν, οὓς οὐκ ἔξεστιν φαγεῖν εἰ μὴ τοὺς ἱερεῖς, καὶ ἔδωκεν καὶ τοῖς σὺν αὐτῷ οὖσιν;
26 how he entered the house of God, in the time of Abiathar the high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and also gave it to those who were with him?”
4 πῶς εἰσῆλθεν εἰς τὸν οἶκον τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ τοὺς ἄρτους τῆς προθέσεως ἔφαγον, ὃ οὐκ ἐξὸν ἦν αὐτῷ φαγεῖν οὐδὲ τοῖς μετ᾽ αὐτοῦ εἰ μὴ τοῖς ἱερεῦσιν μόνοις;
4 how he entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests?
4 [ὡς] εἰσῆλθεν εἰς τὸν οἶκον τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ τοὺς ἄρτους τῆς προθέσεως λαβὼν ἔφαγεν καὶ ἔδωκεν τοῖς μετ᾽ αὐτοῦ, οὓς οὐκ ἔξεστιν φαγεῖν εἰ μὴ μόνους τοὺς ἱερεῖς;
4 how he entered the house of God and took and ate the bread of the Presence, which is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and also gave it to those with him?”
Matt & Luke skipped Mark´s “Abiathar the high priest” and used “μόνοις/μόνους“ (only for the priests)
x 5 ἢ οὐκ ἀνέγνωτε ἐν τῷ νόμῳ ὅτι τοῖς σάββασιν οἱ ἱερεῖς ἐν τῷ ἱερῷ τὸ σάββατον βεβηλοῦσιν καὶ ἀναίτιοί εἰσιν;
5 Or have you not read in the Law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath and are guiltless?
x x
x 6 λέγω δὲ ὑμῖν ὅτι τοῦ ἱεροῦ μεῖζόν ἐστιν ὧδε.
6 I tell you, something greater than the temple is here.
x x
x 7 εἰ δὲ ἐγνώκειτε τί ἐστιν, Ἔλεος θέλω καὶ οὐ θυσίαν, οὐκ ἂν κατεδικάσατε τοὺς ἀναιτίους.
7 And if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltless.
x x
27 καὶ ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς, Τὸ σάββατον διὰ τὸν ἄνθρωπον ἐγένετο καὶ οὐχ ὁ ἄνθρωπος διὰ τὸ σάββατον
27 And he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.
x 5 καὶ ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς,
5 And he said to them,
Matt & Luke skipped Mk 2:27, but Luke have “And he said to them,” like Mark
28 ὥστε κύριός ἐστιν ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου καὶ τοῦ σαββάτου.
28 So the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath.”
8 κύριος γάρ ἐστιν τοῦ σαββάτου ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου.
8 For the Son of Man is lord of the Sabbath.”
5 καὶ ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς, Κύριός ἐστιν τοῦ σαββάτου ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου.
5 And he said to them, “The Son of Man is lord of the Sabbath.”
Matt & Luke used the same word order

I think it is not possible that Matthew and Luke have so many agreements independently of each other. On the other hand, we also have clear differences between Matthew and Luke, which are good arguments against the assumption of a harmonization.

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Re: Minor agreements against gMark

Post by andrewcriddle » Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:55 am

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 5:57 pm
Bernard Muller wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 5:30 pm
Thank you Ben,
I am still trying to digest what Monaghan & Streeter wrote. I am still under the impression these so-called minor agreements can be explained without doubting about the past existence of a Q document.
Just out of curiosity, how do you explain something like this?

Matthew 13.11: 11 ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς ὅτι, Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια τῆς βασιλείας τῶν οὐρανῶν, ἐκείνοις δὲ οὐ δέδοται.

Mark 4.11: 11 καὶ ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς· Ὑμῖν τὸ μυστήριον δέδοται τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ θεοῦ, ἐκείνοις δὲ τοῖς ἔξω ἐν παραβολαῖς τὰ πάντα γίνεται.

Luke 8.10a: 10a ὁ δὲ εἶπεν· Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ θεοῦ, τοῖς δὲ λοιποῖς ἐν παραβολαῖς.

M: Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τ μυστήρια. / To you it has been given to know the mysteries.

K: Ὑμῖν τμυστήριον δέδοται. / To you the mystery has been given.

L: Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τ μυστήρια. / To you it has been given to know the mysteries.

If Matthew and Luke are independent, then both of them did the following independently:
  1. They both turned the singular, "the mystery," into the plural, "the mysteries."
  2. They both moved "it has been given" in front of the mystery/mysteries instead of after it/them.
  3. They both added "to know" as an infinitive complement of "given."
The result is that this phrase winds up identical in Matthew and Luke, but not in Mark. How likely is this kind of convergence of independent editing, in your opinion? Or do y (Not a rhetorical question.) Or do you explain it in some other way?
The text given of Mark 4:11 is the Alexandrian text. In some ancient manuscripts and most later manuscripts Mark agrees with Matthew here.

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Re: Minor agreements against gMark

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:06 am

andrewcriddle wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:55 am
Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 5:57 pm
Bernard Muller wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 5:30 pm
Thank you Ben,
I am still trying to digest what Monaghan & Streeter wrote. I am still under the impression these so-called minor agreements can be explained without doubting about the past existence of a Q document.
Just out of curiosity, how do you explain something like this?

Matthew 13.11: 11 ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς ὅτι, Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια τῆς βασιλείας τῶν οὐρανῶν, ἐκείνοις δὲ οὐ δέδοται.

Mark 4.11: 11 καὶ ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς· Ὑμῖν τὸ μυστήριον δέδοται τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ θεοῦ, ἐκείνοις δὲ τοῖς ἔξω ἐν παραβολαῖς τὰ πάντα γίνεται.

Luke 8.10a: 10a ὁ δὲ εἶπεν· Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ θεοῦ, τοῖς δὲ λοιποῖς ἐν παραβολαῖς.

M: Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τ μυστήρια. / To you it has been given to know the mysteries.

K: Ὑμῖν τμυστήριον δέδοται. / To you the mystery has been given.

L: Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τ μυστήρια. / To you it has been given to know the mysteries.

If Matthew and Luke are independent, then both of them did the following independently:
  1. They both turned the singular, "the mystery," into the plural, "the mysteries."
  2. They both moved "it has been given" in front of the mystery/mysteries instead of after it/them.
  3. They both added "to know" as an infinitive complement of "given."
The result is that this phrase winds up identical in Matthew and Luke, but not in Mark. How likely is this kind of convergence of independent editing, in your opinion? Or do y (Not a rhetorical question.) Or do you explain it in some other way?
The text given of Mark 4:11 is the Alexandrian text. In some ancient manuscripts and most later manuscripts Mark agrees with Matthew here.
And then the issue of scribal harmonization arises. Harmonizing Mark to Matthew may have been the most common harmonization there was. (My main question is how Bernard approaches the minor agreements overall.)

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Re: Minor agreements against gMark

Post by Bernard Muller » Sun Oct 18, 2020 12:25 pm

Since the minor agreements against gMark were discussed in the context of Q (Quelle) I think the proper definition for Q should be stated like:
Q is part of the common material found in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke without, or with, textual relationship in the Gospel of Mark.
That should take care of the "minor agreements" against gMark:
While the two-source hypothesis remains the most popular explanation for the synoptic gospels' origins, the existence of the "minor agreements" has raised serious concerns. ...
The "minor agreements" call into question the proposition that Matthew and Luke knew Mark but not each other
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Q_source:

See below the two cases:

Case 1:
. . . . . . . --> gLuke
. . . . . . . I
. . . . . . .Q
. . . . . . . I
. . . . . . . --> gMatthew


Case 2:
. . . . . . . --> gLuke
. . . . . . . I
gMark--> Q
. . . . . . . I
. . . . . . . --> gMatthew


It does not matter if some common material in gLuke & gMatthew is iffy about a relationship in gMark: regardless if this iffy material is considered as Case 1 or 2, it is still part of Q.

Finally, if my definition for Q is accepted, the past existence of a Q document does not require "Luke" knowledge of gMatthew, or vice versa.
However, in the case "Luke" got her Q material from gMatthew, one has to wonder why gLuke L source shows very important differences with gMatthew M source.

Cordially, Bernard
Last edited by Bernard Muller on Tue Oct 20, 2020 9:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Minor agreements against gMark

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Tue Oct 20, 2020 9:15 am

Bernard Muller wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 12:25 pm
Finally, if my definition for Q is accepted, the past existence of a Q document does not require "Luke" knowledge of gMatthew, or vice versa.
The question is rather whether the old hypothesis is necessary and admissible with regard to the minor agreements that there was a source Q that Matthew and Luke used independently of each other.

Bernard Muller wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 12:25 pm
However, in the case "Luke" got her Q material from gMatthew, one has to wonder why gLuke L source shows very important differences with gMatthew M source.
This was a major argument from earlier scholars who viewed the evangelists as collectors and editors of Jesus stories rather than writers. It took the form: "It is inconceivable that Luke would have written it that way if he (or she) had known Matthew". But meanwhile modern scholars can imagine a lot that was previously considered unthinkable.

It seems to me that it is important to consider very carefully on the one hand the minor agreements and on the other hand the problems arising from the hypothesis of Luke's dependence on Matthew (which I would not be able to do).

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