Study. Synoptic Gospels and the nature of Q. By Fabian Massa.

Translated from Spanish to English with Google Translator.


The relationship between the three synoptic gospels ( Mark, Matthew and Luke) goes beyond the mere similarity of views . The Gospels often recount the same stories , often in the same order , sometimes using the same words. Too many similarities between Mark, Matthew and Luke ( although each of them gives a personal approach ) to be explained by " coincidence ."


To the question : " Why Matthew, Mark and Luke have so much in common ? " Were given the following theories :

  • The use of oral tradition.
  • The Lost Gospel.
  • Using fragments written .
  • Mutual dependence ( copied each other)
  • The use of two main sources: Mark and " Q " source
  • Other siguieren that Matthew was the source of Mark and Luke.
  • A sum of all previous .


Originally, the gospel was transmitted orally and by letters of the Apostles. The letters were copied and forwarded along to the churches :
a. In contrast to the AT Jewish copyists ( scribes and then the Masoretes ) who had a strict adherence to Scripture ( and had the words to the letters of each original and copy ) where any deviation or error is not allowed (they were still waiting the Messiah ) .
b . Letters and writings of the Apostles were copied by those believers who could write , without much requirement (after all they were in the " End Times " and the 2nd coming of Christ to rapture his church was " imminent " before Judgement and purpose of the " World as you know " )
According to the "theory of the two sources " claiming that Mark is the earliest Gospel and that Matthew and Luke have been used as the main source of their works. This would explain why the three synoptic gospels are so similar in structure and even in your language.
To explain matching materials in Matthew and Luke and not found in Mark , a second source is postulated ( not used by Mark ) . This source should be a " collection of sayings of Jesus" that Johannes Weiss, in 1890 , called " Q " ( Quelle , German for "source" ) and was never found .
Finally , it states that both Matthew and Luke had other personal sources , which could have been written and witness testimony . For Matthew , among his sources are undoubtedly their own experiences with the Master and probably from other contemporary witnesses to which he had access ( the other Apostles , Jesus' mother Mary and others).
For Lucas , who was not a witness and had to investigate the facts, just as he himself explains at the beginning of his Gospel :
" 1Muchos have tried to give an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, 2 us as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and servants of the word. 3 So, too , most excellent Theophilus , having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, I have to write an orderly , 4 so that you may know the certainty of what you taught " Luke 1:1-3 NIV .

Q probably be a written document. If Q was simply a shared oral tradition , could not explain the similarities and identities almost word for word in Matthew and Luke when they reflect material Q. Similarly, it is possible to deduce that Q was written in Greek. If the Gospels of Matthew and Luke referred to a document that had been written in another language ( for example, in Aramaic , it is highly unlikely that two independent translations have exactly the same content constructs words.
Q The document should have been written prior to the Gospels of both Matthew and Luke . Some scholars even suggest that Q may have preceded Marcos . A date for the Q final document is often considered the decades of the 40s and 50s of the first century , and some even believe that the layer called wisdom would have been written as early as the 30s.
If Q existed, was lost. Some scholars believe it may be partially reconstructed by examining commonalities between Matthew and Luke (but absent from Mark ) . This reconstructed Q is significant in that it usually does not describe the events of Jesus' life : Q does not mention the birth of Jesus, his selection of 12 disciples , his crucifixion and resurrection. Instead , it appears as a collection of sayings and quotes from Jesus . [1]



The Documentary Theory : Mark as a source .

The "Theory Documentary " used to say that both Matthew and Luke took the Gospel of Mark as a base, taken as almost unique to the Bible itself document. For example :
• Mark has 661 verses. Of these , 606 have a parallel verses in Matthew . Marcos material occupies 500 of the 1068 verses and Matthew . Of the 55 verses of Mark to have no parallel in Matthew , 24 if you have the Lucas . Thus only 31 verses of Mark can not be found in any of the other two Synoptics.
• 350 verses of Mark have a parallel in Luke . Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew. [2 ]

While the three Gospels have a lot of stuff in common, each has a defined profile :


Matthew : Addressed to the Jews / The important thing : The sayings of Jesus. Presents Jesus as King has been prophesied .
Marcos : Directed to the Romans / The important thing : the facts (miracles ) of Jesus / Presents Jesus as the Great Servant of God
Lucas : Directed to the Gentiles / The point : God-Man Jesus / presents the facts from a historical perspective.


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[1 ] http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teor % C3 % ADa_de_las_dos_fuentes
[2 ] William Hendriksen , Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, editorial " Challenge Books " page 14 .





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