The Messiah of the Gospels

By Charles Augustus Briggs | Go to book overview

CHAPTER II.
THE MESSIANIC IDEA OF THE FORERUNNERS OF JESUS.

NOTWITHSTANDlNG the Messianic idea had been so generally deflected from its normal course of development by the various religious parties in Israel subsequent to the Maccabean revolution, there were yet not a few pious souls, both among the learned of the school of Hillel and among the people, who clung with comparative simplicity and purity to the hope of a personal Messiah and of a moral and spiritual redemption through him. A number of these are brought into view who were waiting and looking for the consolation of Israel-- such as Zachariah the priest, Joseph and Mary, Simeon and Anna.

These appear in the earlier chapters of the Gospel of Luke. A single incident is reported in the first chapter of the Gospel of Matthew. The Gospel of Mark, which, apart from a few later additions, is the earliest of our gospels, and which presents the earliest account of the life of Jesus, knows nothing of them. The original Aramaic Gospel of Matthew, the Logia,1 did not include them; for they are not in those portions of the present Gospel of Matthew and the Gospel of Luke, which derived their material from the Logia. They are in

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1
McGiffert Eusebius, pp. 152, 153, 173.

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