Mr. Campbell's books and comments were brilliant. As for Mr. Plaud wishing Jesus had had a scribe following him, I am puzzled by the comment. It was standard practice for Second Temple Jewish students to carry around wax tablets and jot down important statements by their teachers. Good books on the subject: Gymnastics of the Mind, Torah in the Mouth, and

Jewish Literacy in Roman Palestine

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Try reading the Poem of the Man-God

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Fitzmyer’s view is dated. It reflects the late 20th century scholarly view. Read Jesus and the Eyewitnesses by Bauckham, The Case Against Q by Goodacre, and The Case for Jesus by Pitre. The Gospels were written much earlier than the last generation of biblical scholars proposed. Perhaps the HS did inspire the authors to accurately record the words and deeds of Jesus? This of course accords with Dei Verbum, which states: “Holy Mother Church has firmly and with absolute constancy held, and continues to hold, that the four Gospels just named, whose historical character the Church unhesitatingly asserts, faithfully hand on what Jesus Christ, while living among men, really did and taught for their eternal salvation until the day He was taken up into heaven.”

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Thanks for the comment. I’m an early dating proponent for the Gospels. There’s two points that I’d like to address with the historical aspect of the Gospels.

The first is that the Gospels are written by writers, inspired by the Holy Spirit, who viewed the world much differently than we do today. And as you alluded to in your comment, the 20th century theologians who are products of the Von Ranke school of history founded in the 19th century and influenced the thoughts of many theologians in the 20th.

Naturally, Bultmann was a product of this stream of historic critique.

The Gospels authors wrote something akin to Greco-Roman biographies. And there’s a couple of things that need to be highlighted here with the development of their works, especially in view of what we know about historical record.

The memory of ancients were much better than modernity. The disciples of a rabbi would have committed these teachings to memory with repetition. A secular archaeologist Manfred Bietak notes that oral history is accurate approx. 200 years and genealogies are accurate perhaps 500 years.

All of which needs to be factored into any discussion about all books of Sacred Scripture. Furthermore, from a faith perspective, redaction criticism has its flaws. Redaction critique helps with illuminating deeper meaning, but the final form and it’s intent through canonical critique needs to be applied to the exegesis of any text because it prevents exegetical interpretation that ruptures from the tradition and magisterium of the Church.

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