Thursday, February 23, 2012

NT Pod 59: Historical Jesus Criteria

The latest episode of the NT Pod begins a series on the search for criteria in historical Jesus research. In NT Pod 59, I introduce the idea of the historical Jesus criteria and offer some first reflections on what it is that scholars are attempting to do.

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Rich Griese said...

For folks that can't get enough of histoical jesus stuff, there is a great podcast;

Cheers! RichGriese.NET

Jim Deardorff said...

Mark, I believe your emphasis in the podcast on the value of the embarrassment criterion is fully justified. The less said about an embarrassing matter, the better. With respect to Jesus’ baptism by John, the criterion works better if Matthew had been first, then Mark, Luke and John. Not only does Mark have less to say on it than Matthew, but it improves upon John being unworthy to carry Jesus’ sandals by changing it into being unworthy even to untie a thong of them. As you noted, Luke’s further abbreviation supports the criterion, provided it was subsequent to Matthew and Mark (no Q).

Multiple attestation is a less valuable criterion of genuineness, though the suggested order of Matthew, Mark, Luke is multiply attested in the external evidence, and well supported by internal evidence. However, there would be multiple embarrassments in restoring (a Hebraic) Matthew ahead of Mark, so the less said about that the better!