writing his Gospel
The Apostle Matthew wrote his
Gospel in Hebrew
for the Jewish Christians to read at the: “Breaking
of bread” (an early reference to the Eucharistic
celebration, Acts 2:42.) It was in thematic form
and illustrated the fulfilment of the Jewish
prophesies. Matthew or a colleague translated it
Next, Luke wrote a Gospel in Greek in historical
order for the Gentiles. As Luke had not been a
companion of Jesus, he needed an Apostle to indorse
his Gospel. So when he arrived in Rome he asked
Peter to do this. Peter agreed and gave a talk in
which he quoted alternatively from Matthew and Luke.
In this manner he indorsed Luke’s Gospel by merging
it with that authored by a well known Apostle.
Peter’s secretary Mark used Greek shorthand to
record Peter’s words.
Peter, not being a native Greek speaker or an
academic, spoke in koine (common) Greek. Linguists
agree that what became known as Mark’s Gospel has
poor Greek grammar and style. Mark’s shorthand
faithfully records Peter’s poor Greek.
audience of leading Christians: ‘Incessantly begged
Mark to make copies for them’. To which Mark agreed.
When Peter saw the good the Gospel of Mark was
achieving, he agreed to him issuing a second
edition: ‘to all the churches’. In the meantime Luke
had published his Gospel.
Archaeologists have found copies of both editions of
Mark’s Gospel, which are distinguished by one
edition omitting the last 12 verses. These final
verses appear to record Peter’s answers to questions
asked at the end of the meeting.
So the Gospels were written in the Matthew – Luke –
Mark- John order, but published in the: Matthew –
Mark – Luke – Mark (2nd Edition) – John
order. This led to libraries cataloguing them in
differing sequences and preachers quoting from them
in differing orders. In following generations this
would have caused discussion and raised questions.
So, to clarify the situation, Clement of Alexandria,
the leading teacher in the diocese originally
founded by Mark, explained: “The first written of
the Gospels were those with the infancy narratives”.
At the time Jerome wrote, the Matthew- Mark – Luke –
John order was popular, so he adopted it for his
Latin translation. He never said it was the order of
Augustine of Hippo, writing his first book at about
the same time, reported that: ‘it was said’ that
‘the order of writing’ had been: Matthew- Mark-Luke-
John. This was presumably the order they had been
received by the library at Hippo. Augustine didn’t
offer an opinion regarding their order of being
written and published. But some years later, after
careful internal analysis of the Gospels, he stated
in his fourth book that Mark’s theology had been
influenced by that of both Matthew and Luke.
This article was obtained from the: ‘Church in
History’ website. You can find more interesting
articles there concerning the bible. For more
How the Gospels were written based on the testimony
of Clement, Bishop of Alexandria, (died AD 215.)
This explains how the main reason for Markan
Priority does not even exist.
How the Synoptic Problem
- By Dennis Barton -
The Gospels are Historical
- By Dennis Barton -
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