An Aramaic Approach to Q: Sources for the Gospels of Matthew and Luke

By Maurice Casey | Go to book overview

1
THE STATE OF PLAY

The present state of research into 'Q' varies from the chaotic to the bureaucratic. At the chaotic end of the spectrum, there is no agreement as to whether Q existed, nor as to what it was, if it did. At the bureaucratic end of the spectrum, an amorphous group of scholars have agreed that it was a Greek document. It was produced by a Q community, whose concerns can be worked out from it. Some of these scholars suppose that we can work out what this Q community did not believe from what was not in Q, to the point that the Q community did not have an atonement theology because Q has no passion narrative. Most scholars who believe this also believe that Q was the first Gospel, and that its picture of Jesus was that of some kind of Cynic philosopher. As we narrow down the group of scholars to more detailed agreements, so we see an increase in the number of common judgements made in the interests of a consensus of the group, with quite inadequate attention to evidence or argument. We also see the large-scale omission of Aramaic, the language in which Jesus taught.

The purpose of this book is to suggest that the use of Aramaic has something to contribute to the study of Q. In a previous book, I suggested that the Gospel of Mark consists partly of Aramaic sources which have been literally translated into Greek. Consequently, they can be partly reconstructed. In the light of recent research, including that stemming from the discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls, I sought to lay down the most fruitful way of doing this, and I exemplified this with reconstructions of Mark 9.11–13, 2.23–3.6, 10.35–45 and 14.12–26.1 In this book, I propose to see what we can do for Q. After discussing the history of research, I consider again the most appropriate methodology for this kind of work. I then reconstruct and discuss the sources of Matt. 23.23–36//Luke 11.39– 51 and Matt. 11.2–19//Luke 7.18–35. I turn finally to one of the 'overlaps' between Mark and Q, and discuss the recoverable Aramaic sources of Mark 3.20–30, Matt. 12.22–32, and Luke 11.14–23; 12.10. Throughout

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1
P. M. Casey, Aramaic Sources of Mark's Gospel (SNTS. MS 102. Cambridge, 1998).

-1-

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An Aramaic Approach to Q: Sources for the Gospels of Matthew and Luke
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • Abbreviations x
  • 1 - The State of Play 1
  • 2 - Method 51
  • 3 - Scribes and Pharisees: Matthew 23.23–36//luke 11.39–51 64
  • 4 - John the Baptist: Matthew 11.2–19//luke 7.18–35 105
  • 5 - Exorcism and Overlapping Sources: Mark 3.20–30; Matthew 12.22–32; Luke 11.14–23; 12.10 146
  • 6 - Conclusions 185
  • Select Bibliography 191
  • Index of Passages Discussed 206
  • Index of Names and Subjects 209
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