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Examine why the writers of the synoptic gospels edited the material they used.

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Introduction

1 (a) Examine why the writers of the synoptic gospels edited the material they used. (30 marks) Although, the three Synoptic Gospels illustrate the narrative of the life and the ministry of Jesus, they tell it from a different perspective, depending on the writers own interest and purpose. Luke's gospel is predominantly about the early stages of Jesus' life, such as, the birth stories, presentation at temple etc. Luke's gospel marks the importance of the aspects of the Jewish tradition. For example, the temple mentioned in Luke's account is a represents Jewish origin. In ancient times, the temple in Jerusalem was important in the life of Jewish people. It main purpose was to offer Jews sacrifices and offerings of harvest e.g. Passover, It was used to mark important events in human life e.g. birth of Jesus. This is where Mary makes a traditional offering after the birth of Jesus (Luke 2:22). Another important event that occurred in Jesus' life was the Bar Mitzvah- the coming of age. ...read more.

Middle

From my own perspective, I believe that writers of the synoptic gospels edited the material they used to portray a unique picture of Jesus. Each gospel writer contributed uniqueness in an astonishing manner. Although, they can share experience, their account was different. Throughout the gospels they reflect their personalities and interest. The editorial of the materials have made today's understand the life of Jesus from a different perspective. 1 (b) Assess the claim that the synoptic gospels cannot be trusted to give an accurate account of the life of Jesus. (15 marks) In the recent years, biblical scholars have specifically studied and investigated the biblical literatures. This aim was to seek differences between the synoptic gospels. One of the first biblical critics was called Griesbach, who posed this, "how can the Gospels have, on the other hand, so many things in common yet, on the other hand, have so many disagreements." Taking that into account, I agree with the claim that the synoptic Gospels cannot be trusted to give an accurate account of Jesus. ...read more.

Conclusion

In fact, the gospel writers shared a great deal of information. New Testament developed the theory- markan priority. They made speculations the Matthew and Luke imitated Mark's material. For example, Mark uses 661 verses and Matthew include 606 of them, whereas, Luke use 320. In addition, they claimed that Mark's Gospel was the first to be written, because there were similarities in Matthew and Luke. This proves that Matthew and Luke are eye witnesses. The fact that Mark was the first to be written gives firm evidence for proving the accuracy of the account As Graham Stanton concluded if Mark was the first gospel writer than it is the most reliable source. In conclusion, I personally believe that synoptic gospels can be trusted to give an accurate account of the life of Jesus. Present day Christians regard the gospels as a trustworthy source of information, as all "scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, reproof, for correction, for instructions in righteousness" 2 Timothy 3: 16 However, Christians need faith and doctrine that the synoptic gospels are trustworthy. ...read more.

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