Thursday, September 14, 2023

First-Century Identifications Of The Gospel Authors

Michael Jones (InspiringPhilosophy) recently posted a video that makes a lot of good points against the popular claim that the gospels originally circulated anonymously. He's covering a lot of ground in a short video, though, so he doesn't bring up everything that could be mentioned. The video can be supplemented with the information here, which includes some sources not addressed in the video. For example, I've discussed some evidence that Papias not only attributed the fourth gospel to John, but also specified the son of Zebedee rather than some other John or just leaving the issue ambiguous. There are many other relevant posts in our archives. See this one on the significance of the location of some early gospel attributions, like the Roman location of sources commenting on the third gospel, and see here on the evidence for Matthew's authorship of the gospel attributed to him, for example. Michael's video mentions Richard Bauckham, who's done a lot of good work on gospel issues, including the authorship of the documents. However, there are some problems with his views on some of the gospels, and I've addressed those here (on Matthew) and here (on John). A commentary on Matthew's gospel that recently came out argued that the gospel titles were added at the time when all four gospels were gathered in a collection. Here's my explanation of why that's unlikely.

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