Author Topic: Matthean priority  (Read 3921 times)

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #125 on: June 06, 2019, 12:20:42 PM »
In "The Progressive Publication of Matthew" page 565 B Ward Powers writes,

Quote
[Mark] 10:24 MP: Luke omits entirely Mark's record of the response of the disciples to Jesus's
words: "And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again,
'Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God!'". Matthew turns "But Jesus said to
them again" into direct speech, "But again I tell you".
[Mark] 10:24 MD: Mark inserts the reaction of the disciples to Jesus's words, and Jesus's
further comments, from his source P.
MP = Markan Priority
MD = Markan Dependency
https://www.sats.edu.za/userfiles/Powers%20DThPOMAL%20Final%20Apr%202010_0.pdf
(My [] brackets)


Mark's version:
17And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? 18And Jesus said to him, Why call you me good? there is none good but one, that is, God. 19You know the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honor your father and mother. 20And he answered and said to him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth. 21Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said to him, One thing you lack: go your way, sell whatever you have, and give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me. 22And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions.

23And Jesus looked round about, and said to his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 24And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answers again, and said to them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! 25It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26And they were astonished out of measure, saying among themselves, Who then can be saved? 27And Jesus looking on them said, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.


Matthew's version:
16And, behold, one came and said to him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? 17And he said to him, Why call you me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if you will enter into life, keep the commandments. 18He said to him, Which? Jesus said, You shall do no murder, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, 19Honor your father and your mother: and, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 20The young man said to him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet? 21Jesus said to him, If you will be perfect, go and sell that you have, and give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me. 22But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.

23Then said Jesus to his disciples, Truly I say to you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. 24And again I say to you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 25When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved? 26But Jesus beheld them, and said to them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.

Luke's version:
18And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? 19And Jesus said to him, Why call you me good? none is good, save one, that is, God. 20You know the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor your father and your mother. 21And he said, All these have I kept from my youth up. 22Now when Jesus heard these things, he said to him, Yet lack you one thing: sell all that you have, and distribute to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me. 23And when he heard this, he was very sorrowful: for he was very rich. 24And when Jesus saw that he was very sorrowful, he said, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 25For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle's eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26And they that heard it said, Who then can be saved? 27And he said, The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.

It can be seen from the entire periscope that Matthew and Luke differ 36 times. In 18 of these, Mark agrees with Matthew, and in the other 18, Mark agrees with Luke.
It would be very odd if Matthew and Luke, both using Mark, changed Mark's wording in exactly the places where the other did not. This is what is required by Markan priority. However, with Markan dependence Mark simply conflates Matthew and Luke, at times following one and at times following the other.

Well I think I've got that right. From the above link, page 284:

Quote
There are 36 differences of detail most of them of very minor
significance between Matthew and Luke. Their sources were different eyewitnesses:
this explanation accounts for these pericopes in the Majors as they stand. Then Mark
came to these two different accounts, and he melded them marvelously, on 18
occasions choosing to follow Matthew and on the other 18 to follow Luke. (The list of
these 36 differences and how Mark handles them is set out in Chapter Eleven.)
In this we have a simple, clear-cut, straightforward explanation that accounts fully for
what is found in the three Synoptics. But consider the alternatives and what has to be
explained if Mark is first. With this common starting point, Matthew altered his account
from Mark s in 18 ways, small insignificant changes for the most part, and we have to try
and figure out what he was doing and often we simply have to say, He just felt like
changing it. But then Luke, starting from the same pericope in Mark s Gospel, also
makes 18 changes, but all of them different! Thus are created 36 points of difference
between the Majors, and so, more explanations will need to be sought.
So there are two approaches to explanation: (a) Matthew and Luke
« Last Edit: June 06, 2019, 12:23:10 PM by Spud »

ippy

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #126 on: June 07, 2019, 12:18:18 PM »
In "The Progressive Publication of Matthew" page 565 B Ward Powers writes,
MP = Markan Priority
MD = Markan Dependency
https://www.sats.edu.za/userfiles/Powers%20DThPOMAL%20Final%20Apr%202010_0.pdf
(My [] brackets)


Mark's version:
17And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? 18And Jesus said to him, Why call you me good? there is none good but one, that is, God. 19You know the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honor your father and mother. 20And he answered and said to him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth. 21Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said to him, One thing you lack: go your way, sell whatever you have, and give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me. 22And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions.

23And Jesus looked round about, and said to his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 24And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answers again, and said to them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! 25It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26And they were astonished out of measure, saying among themselves, Who then can be saved? 27And Jesus looking on them said, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.


Matthew's version:
16And, behold, one came and said to him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? 17And he said to him, Why call you me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if you will enter into life, keep the commandments. 18He said to him, Which? Jesus said, You shall do no murder, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, 19Honor your father and your mother: and, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 20The young man said to him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet? 21Jesus said to him, If you will be perfect, go and sell that you have, and give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me. 22But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.

23Then said Jesus to his disciples, Truly I say to you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. 24And again I say to you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 25When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved? 26But Jesus beheld them, and said to them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.

Luke's version:
18And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? 19And Jesus said to him, Why call you me good? none is good, save one, that is, God. 20You know the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor your father and your mother. 21And he said, All these have I kept from my youth up. 22Now when Jesus heard these things, he said to him, Yet lack you one thing: sell all that you have, and distribute to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me. 23And when he heard this, he was very sorrowful: for he was very rich. 24And when Jesus saw that he was very sorrowful, he said, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 25For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle's eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26And they that heard it said, Who then can be saved? 27And he said, The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.

It can be seen from the entire periscope that Matthew and Luke differ 36 times. In 18 of these, Mark agrees with Matthew, and in the other 18, Mark agrees with Luke.
It would be very odd if Matthew and Luke, both using Mark, changed Mark's wording in exactly the places where the other did not. This is what is required by Markan priority. However, with Markan dependence Mark simply conflates Matthew and Luke, at times following one and at times following the other.

Well I think I've got that right. From the above link, page 284:

I sometimes wander if, had John Wane stayed out in Vietnam with the Green Berets the Americans might have won that war?

If you can't see the relevance of my comment to your post Spud, I'll explain if you want me to, you only need ask.

Regards ippy

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #127 on: June 07, 2019, 04:33:54 PM »
I sometimes wander if, had John Wane stayed out in Vietnam with the Green Berets the Americans might have won that war?

If you can't see the relevance of my comment to your post Spud, I'll explain if you want me to, you only need ask.

Regards ippy

I haven't seen the film, Ippy. But it looks as if you are comparing the Vietnam war with Christian apologetics?

ippy

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #128 on: June 07, 2019, 06:01:06 PM »
I haven't seen the film, Ippy. But it looks as if you are comparing the Vietnam war with Christian apologetics?

No.

Regards ippy

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #129 on: June 07, 2019, 06:09:03 PM »
No.

Regards ippy
You explain then.

Robbie

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #130 on: June 07, 2019, 06:15:00 PM »
Spud if you google 'John Wayne in Vietnam', you will understand the point Ippy is making.
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Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #131 on: June 07, 2019, 07:07:50 PM »
I'll let ippy explain.

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #132 on: June 11, 2019, 01:05:02 PM »
Here's another quote from the above link, page 377. Talking about the Markan priority hypothesis, he says:
Quote
Mark's order is always supported by the order of one or both of the other two Synoptics. Of the eighty units into which Mark's Gospel can be divided upon the basis of considerations relating to pericope order, for forty units Mark is supported by only one Gospel, so if that Synoptist had placed any of those forty units into his Gospel at a different place, it would not have been true that Mark's order is always supported. (This can be readily seen from Chapter Nine, where the full eighty pericope groups are set out.) Since by common consent it is agreed that Matthew and Luke are acting independently when they concur with or else depart from Markan order, no explanation is possible for why it did not happen that both Matthew and Luke deserted Markan order at the same point: this circumstance can only be put down to coincidence.
(My italics)

jeremyp

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #133 on: June 11, 2019, 07:18:51 PM »
Here's another quote from the above link, page 377. Talking about the Markan priority hypothesis, he says:(My italics)

Quote
Since by common consent it is agreed that Matthew and Luke are acting independently when they concur with or else depart from Markan order,

But it isn't agreed that they are acting independently.
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Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #134 on: June 12, 2019, 10:59:31 AM »
But it isn't agreed that they are acting independently.
Well spotted - but as he says in his next paragraph,
Quote
Similarly, there can be no collusion about the way in which, whenever a Gospel that
has been supporting Mark is about to leave Mark's order, the other Major Synoptist
always continues adhering to Markan order if he has been doing so in the previous
pericope, or if he has not, he invariably immediately returns to Markan order. This
extraordinary timing must, once again, be attributed to coincidence.
That some of these things could occasionally happen is believable. Such coincid-
ences do happen in life. But that Matthew and Luke should come and go in their support
for Mark's order as often as they do without there being any discernible overall reason
why either of them should have done so, and that their respective comings and goings
should mesh together in the way that we find in the data, strains credulity beyond accep-
tance.

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #135 on: June 19, 2019, 04:07:04 AM »
Why would Mark and Luke both make up the same name? It makes more sense that Mark is the source and Matthew merely dropped the name. Your hypothesis requires us to make up a second unknown source, to which Ockham says no.
Quite - it is unlikely that Mark and Luke would have made up the same name. More likely is that either: one of them used the other, or that they both had a similar/the same source. What we can say is that Mark is not Matthew's source, since Matthew appears not to be aware that someone from the synagogue ruler's house came along after the healing of the woman with bleeding to tell him his daughter had died - a detail which, assuming the whole story is not fabricated, seems too significant for Matthew to simply ignore. Matthew also appears to be unaware that the woman with bleeding disappeared into the crowd after touching Jesus. He is not using Mark as his source.

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #136 on: June 21, 2019, 08:17:40 PM »
I think that the impression that Mark emphasises Jesus' deeds more than Matthew is largely derived from Mark's rather 'breathless' style: 'immediately Jesus did this, and then he immediately said that'. All the time giving the impression that Jesus is continually on the move. I think it is this sense of movement is really the only real difference of emphasis between the two evangelists - that's of no great consequence. The emphasis on Jesus' words in Mark is, as Jeremy says, just as important.

In Acts 10:37-43 Peter tells Cornelius the gospel message and he starts with John the Baptist and finishes with something that is similar to Mark 16:9ff. This suggests that Mark's gospel was written as more of a summary of the message Peter and other Christians would typically give when evangelizing to the Gentiles. There was no need for the infancy narratives or long sections containing Jesus' teaching; and if Matthew and Luke were already written, there was less need for another long gospel.

Quote
There are a few other details other than the ones mentioned which incline me to opt for the Markan priority view. Matthew appears to omit certain details according to his Jewish agenda.

If so he also makes some irrational changes, such as to Mark's order and appears to be unaware of detail that Mark has written (see my last post, also "withdrawing by boat to a quiet place" - did the people see them go or hear that they had gone?)
Quote
But there are other instances where you sense he's tarting up the bare details of Mark with a fair amount of technicolour enhancement. The matter of the Resurrection is a case in point. The ending of Mark is generally agreed to be a spurious addition, but the accepted genuine words relate that a young man dressed in white simply tells the women that Jesus has risen and is no longer there*. That's not good enough for Matthew: he has to depict the moment of Resurrection with an angel descending to roll away the stone, leaving the guards terrified.
And the witnesses to this were? Presumably the guards (if it happened) - who would be unlikely to divulge details of the occurrence to members of the Christian group whose leader's body they had been entrusted with guarding. In short, Matthew is quite obviously letting his imagination run riot.

Powers says that if Mark ended at 16:8, it would be logically impossible for it to have been the first gospel written. This is because we know from the epistles and church fathers that the early church had already accepted the fact of the resurrection appearances. Why would the author of the first gospel, knowing this, portray the apostles as ignorant of the resurrection and doubting that Jesus was the Messiah? It's more logical to accept that Mark, writing with the primary aim of demonstrating Jesus' identity as the Son of God, was concerned only to report that Jesus had risen.
Quote
*For those (probably few, in this learned forum!) who are not aware of the genuine ending of Mark's gospel, it is as follows:

(the young man in white tells them)“Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.” And they went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing" The End
« Last Edit: June 22, 2019, 08:27:24 AM by Spud »

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #137 on: June 28, 2019, 06:28:19 PM »
One of the reasons I was interested in this subject is that Rosenstock-Huessy says in "Fruit of Lips: Why four gospels?", "Mark states bluntly that he is quoting from Matthew". I couldn't find any statement of the kind in Mark,
Maybe it's where Mark cuts short John's announcement, "I baptize with water, but he will baptize with the Holy Spirit". Matthew (and Luke) adds 28 more words, indicating that he has another source for this material and that, logically, Mark is quoting from him.

ippy

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #138 on: June 28, 2019, 06:41:32 PM »
Maybe it's where Mark cuts short John's announcement, "I baptize with water, but he will baptize with the Holy Spirit". Matthew (and Luke) adds 28 more words, indicating that he has another source for this material and that, logically, Mark is quoting from him.

Wow!!

Best wishes Spud, ippy

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #139 on: June 30, 2019, 03:46:05 AM »
Wow!!

Best wishes Spud, ippy
And to you, ippy. There is also, "14but John was forbidding him, saying, ‘I have need by thee to be baptized — and thou dost come unto me!’ 15But Jesus answering said to him, ‘Suffer now, for thus it is becoming to us to fulfill all righteousness,’ then he doth suffer him."
This seems to flow naturally from the preceding verse in Matthew, indicating it is part of the original material. So here again it looks like Mark has quoted from Matthew 3:13  but left out verses 14 & 15.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2019, 08:16:08 AM by Spud »

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #140 on: July 02, 2019, 09:45:51 AM »
Very interesting is the three synoptic accounts of when Jesus came down from the mountain after the transfiguration and healed a boy with an evil spirit. Mark records that the boy was deaf and dumb, yet neither Matthew nor Luke mention this detail. Strange, if Mark was their source. More likely is that Mark is following Matthew and adds detail supplied by Peter.

ippy

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #141 on: July 08, 2019, 04:14:58 PM »
Very interesting is the three synoptic accounts of when Jesus came down from the mountain after the transfiguration and healed a boy with an evil spirit. Mark records that the boy was deaf and dumb, yet neither Matthew nor Luke mention this detail. Strange, if Mark was their source. More likely is that Mark is following Matthew and adds detail supplied by Peter.

If you find that lot interesting Spud, it might be a good idea for your good self to drop that and take up collecting used teabags as a hobby, of course that would be assuming you could handle the extra excitement.

Best wishes ippy.

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #142 on: July 08, 2019, 07:07:01 PM »
If you find that lot interesting Spud, it might be a good idea for your good self to drop that and take up collecting used teabags as a hobby, of course that would be assuming you could handle the extra excitement.

Best wishes ippy.
Don't knock teabag collecting ippy. They probably make excellent fertilizer, I know that filtered coffee does.

jeremyp

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #143 on: July 08, 2019, 07:14:09 PM »
Maybe it's where Mark cuts short John's announcement, "I baptize with water, but he will baptize with the Holy Spirit". Matthew (and Luke) adds 28 more words, indicating that he has another source for this material and that, logically, Mark is quoting from him.
Why is it logical? Is it not more logical that Mark created the basic account and Matthew and Luke embellished it?

It's striking that Matthew's account of John the Baptist and Jesus' baptism is significantly longer than Mark's and Luke's is longer still. Note also in both Matthew and Luke, this account occurs in chapter 3 whereas in Mark it is literally the first thing he talks about. Why would Mark omit everything to do with Jesus' birth unless he didn't know either of the stories?
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Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #144 on: July 09, 2019, 02:01:24 AM »
Why is it logical? Is it not more logical that Mark created the basic account and Matthew and Luke embellished it?

It's striking that Matthew's account of John the Baptist and Jesus' baptism is significantly longer than Mark's and Luke's is longer still. Note also in both Matthew and Luke, this account occurs in chapter 3 whereas in Mark it is literally the first thing he talks about. Why would Mark omit everything to do with Jesus' birth unless he didn't know either of the stories?
In answer to your first two questions:
Because to me at least, it is not likely that Mark, Matthew and Luke made up the story between them. It's possible, but unlikely. Why would they? Neither is it likely that the three used another source, because there is no evidence for that source. In that scenario, Mark chose to quote or only had access to the part of the source that contained, "with the holy spirit". This scenario is a long stretch of the imagination. It's less of a stretch simply to say that Mark was quoting from Matthew (or Luke or both).

In answer to your last question:
Because Mark was writing in the same way that most preachers use the Bible, that is, they quote from it without retelling the whole lot.
Acts 10 shows that for the purposes of evangelism, Peter began with the preaching and baptism of John. No Nativity or long sermons on mounts, but that doesn't mean he knew nothing about them, just that they weren't necessary for his purpose.

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #145 on: July 09, 2019, 03:15:28 PM »
I would like to post some more evidence which I've come across while reading my new book, which is the one in the link I gave earlier.

The question in my mind is, where does Mark "state bluntly that he is quoting from Matthew", as claimed in another book.

A WW1 army chaplain called John Chapman, who converted from Markan Priority to Markan Dependence while preparing to return to the Front after being injured, found two verses in Matthew and their equivalent in Mark (Mt 13:3//Mk 4:2 and Mt 13:34-35//Mk 4:33-34). He says, in his book, "Matthew, Mark and Luke", 1936:

Quote
I had found (apparently) two definite statements by Mark that he had omitted some outdoor parables and indoor explanations. This was astounding

He also found Mt 23:1//Mk 12:38 and says,

Quote
This coming immediately after A and B [the above two examples], completely bowled me over. No reply is possible. Mk. tells us once more, In the course of His teaching He was saying. What teaching? Look at Mt.; there it is, shoals of it.

These subtle differences between Matthew and Mark's introductions to Jesus' teaching seem to suggest that it's more probable Mark was quoting from Matthew than that Matthew came to these verses in Mark and decided to add more parables and explanations.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2019, 03:17:41 PM by Spud »

jjohnjil

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #146 on: July 10, 2019, 09:02:49 AM »
I would like to post some more evidence which I've come across while reading my new book, which is the one in the link I gave earlier.

The question in my mind is, where does Mark "state bluntly that he is quoting from Matthew", as claimed in another book.

A WW1 army chaplain called John Chapman, who converted from Markan Priority to Markan Dependence while preparing to return to the Front after being injured, found two verses in Matthew and their equivalent in Mark (Mt 13:3//Mk 4:2 and Mt 13:34-35//Mk 4:33-34). He says, in his book, "Matthew, Mark and Luke", 1936:

He also found Mt 23:1//Mk 12:38 and says,

These subtle differences between Matthew and Mark's introductions to Jesus' teaching seem to suggest that it's more probable Mark was quoting from Matthew than that Matthew came to these verses in Mark and decided to add more parables and explanations.

Spud

You’re obviously very interested in which gospel writer originated the stories and which copied, but I can’t understand why.  As nothing is know about any of them – plus it’s certain none of them were around in the time Jesus is supposed to have been preaching – what difference will it make if you are ever successful in discovering who was first to tell his story?

In addition to that, surely the whole Brexit saga must tell you that what the people who are trying to influence others say or write bears little resemblance to the truth, so the gospels are likely to be very far from the 'gospel truth' anyway!

Spud

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #147 on: July 10, 2019, 12:39:53 PM »
John

There are a lot of myths being spread on the net about the gospels, one of them being that the resurrection was made up years after the first gospel was written, which is assumed to be Mark because his is the shortest.

Just keeping the professors on their toes.

ippy

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #148 on: July 10, 2019, 06:45:57 PM »
John

There are a lot of myths being spread on the net about the gospels, one of them being that the resurrection was made up years after the first gospel was written, which is assumed to be Mark because his is the shortest.

Just keeping the professors on their toes.

Spud it must be difficult for you to get to any sleep after all of these  exchanges, although on thinking about it, it is the cricket season, and that must help, oh yes if you still can't sleep with all of these exciting exchanges about our Mat try listening to the golf commentary on the radio that'd put anyone high on amphetamines to sleep.

Best wishes ippy

jeremyp

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Re: Matthean priority
« Reply #149 on: July 10, 2019, 07:02:11 PM »

In answer to your last question:
Because Mark was writing in the same way that most preachers use the Bible, that is, they quote from it without retelling the whole lot.
Acts 10 shows that for the purposes of evangelism, Peter began with the preaching and baptism of John. No Nativity or long sermons on mounts, but that doesn't mean he knew nothing about them, just that they weren't necessary for his purpose.

That doesn't make any sense. About 95% of Mark appears in Matthew and/or Luke. If Matthew preceded Mark, then Mark was more or less just copying out bits of Matthew. Why would he omit things like the birth narrative, Lords Prayer and Sermon on the Mount but then choose to expand the Pigs of the Gerasenes passage?
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