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Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Ser. II, Vol I:
The Church History of Eusebius.: Note 8

Early Church Fathers  Index     

On Bk. III. chap. 39, § 1 (note 1, continued).

Since the above note was in type Resch’s important work on the Agrapha(von Gebhardt and Harnack’s Texte und Untersuchungen, Bd. V. Heft 4) has come to hand. On p. 27 sq. he discusses at considerable length the sources of the Synoptic Gospels. He accepts the theory which is most widely adopted by New-Testament critics, that the synoptic tradition as contained in our Synoptic Gospels rests upon an original Gospel of Mark (nearly if not quite identical with our present Gospel of Mark) and a pre-canonical Hebrew Gospel. In agreement with such critics he draws a sharp distinction between this original Hebrew Gospel and our canonical Greek Matthew, while at the same time recognizing that the latter reproduces that original more fully p. 390 than either of the other Gospels does. This original Hebrew he then identifies with the λόγια referred to by Papias as composed by Matthew in the Hebrew tongue (see Bk. III. chap. 39, § 16); that is, with the traditional Hebrew Gospel of Matthew (see ibid. chap. 24, note 5). The arguments which he urges in support of this position are very strong. Handmann regards the Gospel according to the Hebrews as the second original source of the synoptic tradition, alongside of the Ur-Marcus, and even suggests its identification with the λόγια of Papias, and yet denies its identity with the Hebrew Matthew. On the other hand, Resch regards the Hebrew Matthew, which he identifies with the λόγια of Papias, as the second original source of the synoptic tradition, alongside of Mark or the Ur-Marcus, and yet, like Handmann, though on entirely different grounds, denies the identity of the Gospel according to the Hebrews with the Hebrew Matthew. Their positions certainly tend to confirm my suggestion that the Hebrew Matthew and the Gospel according to the Hebrews were originally identical (see above, Bk. III. chap. 27, note 8).

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