Friday, November 10, 2017

Harmonization and textual transmission

Since "contradictions" in the Gospels often turn on how the exact wording of one account is apparently discrepant in relation to a parallel account, one question is whether the transmission of the text is sufficiently exacting to put so much weight on the precise wording of a particular phrase. For instance:

When we had to work through the whole of the New Testament in a more systematic way, we started with the Pauline corpus. The assumption was that the letters of Paul did not pose as many problems as some other parts of the NT, and this assumption bore out. Apparently there is something in tightly argued prose that puts it in less danger of textual change than simple narrative, especially narrative with synoptic parallels. 

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