The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
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Ken Olson
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The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by Ken Olson »

neilgodfrey wrote: Sun Oct 24, 2021 1:18 pm
Ken Olson wrote: Sun Oct 24, 2021 10:57 am .... The first blog post I have planned is on the Matthean Priority Hypothesis, which I'm not sure is of great interest on this list.
It is of great interest to me. Is it available in some form in another discussion or publication somewhere?
Robert MacEwen's book Matthean Posteriority (2015) is probably the most comprehensive discussion of the theory yet published. As I've remarked before on this forum, I was not convinced by it, but it is unusually even-handed in its discussion of the four different source theories it considers (The Griesbach, Two Document, Farrer, and Matthean Posteriority Hypotheses).

https://www.amazon.com/Matthean-Posteri ... 144&sr=8-1

MacEwen also has a response to Mark Goodacre's (currently unpublished) SBL Paper, "Why not Matthew's use of Luke?" online here:

https://academic.logos.com/when-mark-go ... e-of-luke/
I have posted a critique of Robert MacEwen's argument from verbatim agreement, focusing on the Crucial Issue of Verbatim Agreement in his response to Mark Goodacre (linked above), but dealing with the data he presented in his book Matthean Posteriority as well:

https://kenolsonsblog.wordpress.com/202 ... t-macewen/

(P.S. - No, I don't discuss Marcion, I'm discussing MacEwen's argument concerning verbatim agreement among the synoptic gospels).
Last edited by Ken Olson on Mon Nov 15, 2021 5:18 am, edited 6 times in total.
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Jax
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Re: The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by Jax »

Thanks Ken for bringing this up. Personally I have leaned towards Garrow's thesis as it seems to help explain the Synoptic problem without needing to resort to a Q hypothesis. However, as Luke seems to be a multi-stage project and may have roots in the Gospel of Marcion this may not be such a cut and dried solution. And where does John fit into all of this?

I look forward to reading the links that you have provided to gain further insight into this.

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gmx
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Re: The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by gmx »

It is several years since I read Farmer's work on Matthean priority. Yes this post is about Matthean posteriority yet I find It telling that one can make a reasonable justification for almost any Gospel development dependency graph imaginable

In my view, the question of dependency won't be answered until we find out who the gospel writers were, why they wrote, and why they were content to build upon other completed works.

For example, someone might suggest that "Matthew took Mark's gospel (and possibly Q) and tailored it to address the concerns of a Jewish audience."

How does that work in practice ? Matthew is aware of Mark's gospel but his audience is not ? So Matthew can pass his expanded plagiarism of Mark off as an original work ? How is Matthew in a community of like-minded Jesus followers but only Matthew knows of (and has access to) Mark's written gospel ?

I think until we can explain why these documents were written and who the original intended audience was, I don't think it will be possible to determine the order of dependence.
Ken Olson
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Re: The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by Ken Olson »

Alan Garrow has posted a video version of the paper on Matthean Posteriority he will be presenting at the Society of Biblical Literature conference in San Antonio on November 21, 2021 (a week from today).

mph-strikes-back-sbl-2021_orig.jpeg
mph-strikes-back-sbl-2021_orig.jpeg (185.34 KiB) Viewed 2107 times

https://www.alangarrow.com/sbl2021.html ... I7CK1kfyg0
Bernard Muller
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Re: The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by Bernard Muller »

"Matthew" did not know gLuke:

Main argument:
Mk8:15 "Take heed, beware of the leaven of the Pharisees..." in the missing block reappears in Lk12:1b "Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.". Luke's version is very similar of what shows in GMatthew 16:6 & 16:11 "... Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees ..." also in gMark missing block (Mk6:47 to Mk8:27a).
Note: "Matthew" knew about the missing block in GMark which he "copied" and expanded (Mt14:24 to 16:13a).

gLuke is without the missing block (except for the aforementioned saying). Therefore "Luke" did not get the leaven saying from gMark or gMatthew, but obtained that saying regardless: from where? Because not from the other Synoptic gospels, from a separate "Q" document. Furthermore, this saying in gLuke (12:1b) is right in front of a series of five other "Q" sayings (12:2-10): that would greatly increase the probability Luke's leaven saying comes from "Q".

Note: "Luke" knew about gMark (without the Markan missing block). See http://historical-jesus.info/appf.html

gMatthew and gMark:
How does that work in practice ? Matthew is aware of Mark's gospel but his audience is not ? So Matthew can pass his expanded plagiarism of Mark off as an original work ? How is Matthew in a community of like-minded Jesus followers but only Matthew knows of (and has access to) Mark's written gospel ?
I don't think gMatthew was presented as plagiarism of gMark. Rather the opposite: gMatthew was told to be the original gospel, later used by gMark for a Gentile audience. Yes gMark was known to gMatthew audience first, but gMatthew would be claimed as lost and then "discovered" later.

Main argument:
Mk16:4 "And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away: for it was very great."
That looks very suspicious: was the tomb opened by disciples in order to carry Jesus' corpse somewhere else?
"Matthew" went in great pain to show it was not so:
Mt27:66 "So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.
Mt28:2 "And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it."
That is obviously in reaction to gMark:
Mt28:12-15: "And when they were assembled with the elders, and had taken counsel, they gave large money unto the soldiers,
Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept.
And if this come to the governor's ears, we will persuade him, and secure you.
So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day."


Cordially, Bernard
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Irish1975
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Re: The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by Irish1975 »

I don’t have a horse in this race, but a few questions.

1) Is the reconstruction of Marcion’s Gospel now considered a necessary factor in the synoptic problem, as per Klinghardt, Vinzent? Or are scholars such as Goodacre still living inside the canon (“New Testament Studies”).

2) For those who care only about the relative priority of canonical Matthew, Mark, Luke, I am curious what it would mean for a larger theory of Christian origins if you/one/we could actually attain knowledge or reasonable certainty/probability about the relative chronology of these texts. What would that knowledge mean or where would it get you? What is at stake?

My suspicion is that we wouldn’t be any closer to knowing where or how this content originated, or whether the authors operated in close proximity with each other or worked independently from within their fabled “communities,” having only this or that document in their hands. Nor would we be any closer to knowing their dates of composition. The disconnection between the actual dearth of evidnece for canonical Gospels before the mid 2nd century, and the “consensus of the discipline” around 1st century composition, would be unaffected.
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Secret Alias
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Re: The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by Secret Alias »

These argument only prove or relate to the fake canonical gospels sanctioned by Irenaeus. Like if kids argue 'who is the best singer of all time' Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj or Taylor Swift especially in a scenario where all previous singers had been eliminated.
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MrMacSon
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Re: The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by MrMacSon »

Irish1975 wrote: Sun Nov 14, 2021 1:06 pm 1) Is the reconstruction of Marcion’s Gospel now considered a necessary factor in the synoptic problem, as per Klinghardt, Vinzent?
I'm not sure it is or would be widely considered a factor in the synoptic problem: whether scholars individually or in groups would consider Marcion's Gospel a factor in the synoptic problem might depend on what extent they've engaged with Klinghardt and Vinzent's views and others, such as Joseph B Tyson and his mentor, john Knox, and Jason Beduhn.

Irish1975 wrote: Sun Nov 14, 2021 1:06 pm 2) For those who care only about the relative priority of canonical Matthew, Mark, Luke, I am curious what it would mean for a larger theory of Christian origins if you/one/we could actually attain knowledge or reasonable certainty/probability about the relative chronology of these texts. What would that knowledge mean or where would it get you? What is at stake?
It might depend on whether reasonable propositions and premises about a pre-Marcionite & pre-synoptic proto-gospel or two (or more) can be argued.

I think this might be the case -
Irish1975 wrote: Sun Nov 14, 2021 1:06 pm My suspicion is that we wouldn’t be any closer to knowing where or how this content originated, or whether the authors operated in close proximity with each other or worked independently from within their fabled “communities,” having only this or that document in their hands. Nor would we be any closer to knowing their dates of composition. The disconnection between the actual dearth of evidence for canonical Gospels before the mid 2nd century, and the “consensus of the discipline” around 1st century composition, would be unaffected.
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Irish1975
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Re: The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by Irish1975 »

@MrMacSon

Yeah, sounds about right. Vinzent is right that the division between NT and Patristics makes no sense.
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maryhelena
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Re: The Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis

Post by maryhelena »

Irish1975 wrote: Sun Nov 14, 2021 1:06 pm

My suspicion is that we wouldn’t be any closer to knowing where or how this content originated, or whether the authors operated in close proximity with each other or worked independently from within their fabled “communities,” having only this or that document in their hands. Nor would we be any closer to knowing their dates of composition.
Debates over words, which word was first, which word was later, which word was interpolated.....it's a merry-go-around.....

The story is simple: under the rule of Tiberius a crucifixion is placed. That crucifixion is read as being historical; that the man allegedly crucified under Tiberius was the man at the core, the center point, of what became known as Christianity.

It's a historical claim that debates over Greek words cannot settle.

A crucifixion that shaped the world we live in - we need more than fine words and grand stories - we need to find a historical core to the story. To assume the historical core was under Tiberius is to allow the setting of the story to determine the historicity of the story. i.e. Tiberius plus story does not equate to Tiberius plus history. Story settings are interesting, in and off themselves, but they do not guarantee the historicity of the story they relate.
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