Introducing the Synoptic Problem to the Person in the Pews

At the blog Bible Study and the Christian Life, I have started a series on the Synoptic Problem (the literary relationship of Matthew, Mark and Luke as well as their sources) primarily for a lay audience. Instead of going through every technical argument for/against Markan priority and the debate over the existence of Q, my purpose is to give a broad overview of the subject with links to do further research and examples that will show how it might be relevant to their everyday Bible reading. Please let me know if my explanations are clear for those who may have no prior knowledge of the subject and if they are pastorally sensitive to those who may have a difficult time accepting that one Gospel writer would edit another.

  • Post 1: Introducing why there must be a literary connection between the Synoptic Gospels.
  • Post 2: An overview of the three major theories.
  • Post 3: A specific example of triple tradition, double tradition and unique material in the account of John’s baptism of Jesus.
  • Post 4: A specific example of double tradition in the beatitudes.
  • Post 5: A discussion of the relevance of the Synoptic Problem to historical, literary and theologically minded readers.

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