Trajectories through the New Testament and the Apostolic Fathers

By Andrew F. Gregory; Christopher M. Tuckett | Go to book overview

11
First-fruits and the Support of Prophets,
Teachers, and the Poor in Didache 13 in
Relation to New Testament Parallels

Jonathan A. Draper


1. INTRODUCTION

Few today would pronounce with as much confidence as Adolf Harnack, in his pioneering commentary Die Lehre der Zwölf Apostel,1 on the saying found twice in slightly different forms in Did. 13. 1–2, ‘The labourer is worthy of his food’: ‘Der Verfasser fusst auch hier auf einem Herrnwort in der Fassung des Matthaus.’ For one thing, scholarly opinions on the dependence of the Didache on Matthew’s Gospel remain deeply divided,2 and therefore an opinion on a particular logion will partly depend on one’s judgement on the situation as a whole. For another, the possibility that individual logia set by the evangelists on the lips of Jesus may have originated from more general Jewish tradition is more widely accepted. So, on this saying, Rudolf Bultmann remarks that it is ‘evidently a proverb which has been turned to use by the Church for the instructional material it provided’.3 It is indeed a saying which is found not only in Q (Matt. 10. 10 = Luke 10. 7) but also in 1 Tim. 5. 18, and it probably also underlies the argumentation of Paul in 1 Cor. 9. 1–18 as well as the Gospel of Thomas, 88. In such a case, it seems that the balance of the evidence must favour caution, so that Helmut Köster’s conclusion is probably right in this case: ‘Ergebnis der zu Did. 13, 1f gemachten Erwägung ist, dass hier ein Maschal verwendet wird, das schon früh als Herrenwort in der freien Uberlieferung bekannt war. Da in der Did. jede Zitationsformel an dieser

1 A. von Harnack, Die Lehre der zwölf Apostel nebst Untersuchungen zur altesten Geschichte der Kirchenverfassung und des Kirchenrechts, TU 2 (Leipzig: Hinrichs’ sche Buchhandlung, 1884), 50.

2 See, e.g., C. M. Tuckett, ‘Synoptic Tradition in the Didache’, in J. A. Draper (ed.), The Didache in Modern Research, AGAJU 37 (Leiden: Brill, 1996), 92–128, contra J. A. Draper,’ The Jesus Tradition in the Didache’, in Draper (ed.), Didache in Modern Research, 72–91.

3 R. Bultmann, The History of the Synoptic Tradition (ET Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1963), 103.

-223-

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