Summing Up: Was Luke Luke?

I started this thread over a week ago on the authorship of the Third Gospel, and would like now simply to bring some closure to it before moving on to other things. To sum up: there is a kind of interpretive logic that can lead one to think that this Gospel was written by Luke, a Gentile physician who was a traveling companion of Paul. This is what I myself thought for years, and it was based on this logic, ...

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The Accuracy of Acts: Part 2

We could deal forever with the question of the historical accuracy of Acts. There are entire books devoted to the problem and even to *aspects* of the problem, and different scholars come to different conclusions. My own view is that since Acts is at odds with Paul just about every time they talk about the same thing, that it is probably not to be taken as very accurate, especially in its detail. In yesterday’s post I dealt with a couple ...

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The Historical Accuracy of Acts

I am circling around the ultimate question of this thread, whether Luke the gentile physician, the companion of Paul, wrote the Gospel of Luke. The first step was to show that Paul never *mentions* Luke as a gentile physician in any of his undisputed letters. The second step involves asking the question of whether *any* companion of Paul – whether Luke or someone else – wrote the books of Luke and Acts. The argument that one did is based on ...

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Who Wrote Luke and Acts?

In this thread I have been discussing whether Luke, the gentile physician, the traveling companion of Paul, wrote the Third Gospel. The first point I’ve made, over a couple of posts, is that the idea that Paul *had* a gentile physician as a traveling companion is dubious. That notion is derived from the mention of Luke in the book of Colossians, but Paul almost certainly did not *write* Colossians. Paul does mention a companion named Luke in the book of ...

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Persecutions for Calling Jesus God

QUESTION:

If the pre-‘resurrection’ Jesus and, later on, his earliest (Jewish) followers had declared Jesus to actually BE God then wouldn’t they have been kicked out of the synagogues from the start because of blasphemy? But since that did not happen (Jesus preached in synagogues and his disciples continued to go to synagogues after his ‘resurrection’ for a while) doesn’t that indicate that the earliest Christian belief did NOT contain the claim that Jesus actually was God?

RESPONSE:

This ...

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Exaltation Christology in the Speeches in Acts

In this post I return to the topic of early Christology. To review what I’ve covered so far: I have indicated that early on in the Christian tradition there were two types of Christology, one of which I have called “exaltation” Christology (I have not mentioned yet the other type); this is sometimes called a “low” Christology or a Christology from below. This is the view that Jesus started out as a human, nothing more, but came to be exalted ...

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My Translation of the NT?

QUESTION:

Do you have any plans to publish your own “best” version of the NT in English? From reading several of your books, it does seem as though you probably already have a translation sitting in a drawer somewhere. I have not been able to find scholarly reconstruction that was produced in the last three and a half decades. Most of the newer “translations” are theologically motivated and sound more like modern slang. Have any of your colleagues/ students ...

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Peter as Literate? Part 2

THIS IS A CONTINUATION OF MY POST FROM YESTERDAY ON WHETHER PETER COULD HAVE WRITTEN 1 PETER, BASED ON THE QUESTION OF HIS POSSIBLE LITERACY. READ THE FIRST POST FIRST, OR THIS ONE WON’T MAKE AS MUCH SENSE!

In pursuing this line of inquiry, we might ask what we can know about Peter as a person, prior to his becoming a disciple of Jesus. The answer is that we do not know much at all. The Gospels are consistent only in ...

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Peter as Literate?

IN RESPONSE TO MY POSTS ON SECRETARIES AND THE BOOK OF 1 PETER, SEVERAL PEOPLE HAVE RAISED THE QUESTION OF WHETHER PETER WAS HIMSELF LITERATE (ABLE TO READ, OR MORE SIGNIFICANTLY, TO WRITE). THIS IS THE FIRST PART OF WHAT I SAY IN MY BOOK FORGERY AND COUNTERFORGERY; THE SECOND PART WILL BE IN THE NEXT POST.

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In his now-classic study of ancient literacy, William Harris gave compelling reasons for thinking that at the best of times in antiquity ...

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Silvanus as Peter’s Secretary?

QUESTION:

What do you make of the author’s reference to a Silvanus in 1 Peter 5:12? Could it be that this really is Peter saying he used a secretary to write this letter? I know you said there is little to no evidence that people used secretaries, but what do you make of this reference to a Silvanus?

RESPONSE:

Yes, this is a question that I deal with in my book Forged, and that I deal with at yet ...

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