Except for the selections mentioned in the Preface, all of the translations are our own. Our goal has been to provide a fluent English translation that remains as faithful to the words, style, and tone of the original as possible. But since translations always compromise the integrity of one or other of the languages involved, we have tended to lean toward readability on the assumption that technical research will be based on the original in any case. At the same time, if we have felt it necessary to add English words or phrases to the original to make the sense clearer, these are always indicated by being enclosed in parentheses (). Whenever the original text is in doubt, or when the original text has been altered or added to, those passages are always enclosed in brackets [ ].
The foreign words transliterated in parentheses relate to major early Christian concepts, such as logos, sōtēr, and mythos, or they are words referring to types of ancient literature, and have been included to shed some light on the question to what genres the Christian gospels belonged.