gmx wrote:How watertight is the case that Luke and Acts emanate from the same hand? Given the absence of Acts from Marcion's canon, it would seem that either Marcion doctored canonical Luke, or Acts is the product of a different author.
The answer to this question requires a careful delineation of terms. What is "Luke," when "Luke" may have had more than one version?
The evidence, stylometric and internal, points towards the idea that the last person to significantly expand a gospel into the one we know as "Luke" (with the prologue and other portions) is the same person as the author of Acts. This is completely consistent with (and supported by) the fact that Acts is absent from Marcion's canon, as Marcion's gospel clearly was not the same thing as canonical Luke.
This discussion requires a careful delineation of both terminology and hypotheses regarding the development of Luke (and Acts).
gmx wrote:This is what bothers me about the current state of scholarship:
In the last 100 years, despite considerable intellectual application and human endeavour, what can really be considered to be "solved" about the synoptic (or early Christian origins) problem?
We are not required to be completely bedazzled by the variety of scholarship, which is all but necessitated both by the necessity of publishing new theses and by the human craving for novelty. Some of them are supported by evidence, some of them are merely not contradicted by it, and some of them are contraindicated by the evidence, such as it is and as meager as it may be.
On the other hand, someone sympathetic to a solution or solutions to the synoptic problem that receives rather marginal attention may feel such a problem more acutely (e.g., if someone had a soft spot for the idea that the Gospel of Mark was posterior to Matthew and Luke). Then the unwillingness of scholarship to rally around that position would be frustrating, as would be the confusion sown by the diversity of views and the seeming cogency (subjectively) of those arguing for such a different idea.
"... almost every critical biblical position was earlier advanced by skeptics." - Raymond Brown