Evidently the “Q” source is quite authentic, but why? And, other sources of Jesus’ sayings may be related to oral traditions and even to early church teachings that were fed back into the Gospels and are less authentic….

I find it hard to accept that what we have in the New Testament is the authentic material was actually said and done by Jesus (in the strict historic sense).

You said that the statement about Jesus relating to God’s Kingdom on earth and who was to rule and that Jesus thought he was the King of the Jews and that Judas reported that to the religious authorities. How do we know that this is historically accurate?

How can we know that one item is authentic and others aren’t? I did read your book dealing with the criteria, but I am not convinced….

***Question*** How do we know, absolutely and historically, that even those sayings of Jesus that meet the criteria you use are authentic and not simply the teachings of the early church fed back into the Gospel documents?



These are great questions, and among other things they show that I am doing a very bad job indeed in communicating my views!

For background: this reader was responding to comments I made, when evaluating the work of Reza Aslan, where I laid out the evidence that Jesus delivered an apocalyptic message. This evidence includes the fact that apocalyptic teachings of Jesus are found scattered throughout all the layers of our early traditions, Mark, Q, M, and L. I quoted a couple of the Q sayings in support – hence this person’s question.


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