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One Gospel from Two: Mark's Use of Matthew and Luke.

One Gospel from Two: Mark's Use of Matthew and Luke. Edited by David B. Peabody, with Lamar Cope and Allan J. McNicol. Harrisburg, PA: Trinity Press International, 2003. xvi and 426 pages. Paper. $26.00.

This volume adds the further subtitle, "A Demonstration by the Research Team of the International Institute for Renewal of Gospel Studies." Indeed, the book is a collaborative venture, summarizing work done by Lamar Cope, David L. Dungan, the late William R. Farmer (to whom the book is dedicated), Allan J. McNicol, David B. Peabody, Philip L. Shuler, and Thomas R. W. Longstaff. The purpose of the book is to lay out the case for "the Two Gospel hypothesis," a revised version of "the Griesbach hypothesis," which contends that Matthew was written first, the writer of Luke used Matthew, and the writer of Mark used both Matthew and Luke; there was no "Q" involved.

One Gospel from Two is organized into an introduction, seven "parts," and a conclusion, followed by four appendices. The introduction offers a compact review of the synoptic problem, the authors' sketch of their argument for "the Two Gospel hypothesis," an overview of the purpose of Mark, and guidelines for reading the rest of the book. Of particular note is the positive value given patristic witnesses to the order in which the Gospels were written.

The four major parts of the book provide detailed comparative studies of Gospel texts. The authors advise that the best way to follow the argument of the book is to have their companion CD-ROM synopsis of Mark on hand. Since the CD did not come with my review copy, I can attest to the fact that its absence makes working through this book excessively cumbersome at times.

Nevertheless, this impressive volume is another significant step forward in the challenge to the hegemony of "the Two (Four) Document hypothesis" in synoptic studies. The implications are enormous. If there is no "Q," there is no Q community, there is no Q Christianity, there is no Q ecclesiology, and there are no Q strata of source material for constructing the historical Jesus.

S. John Roth

Faith Lutheran Church

Jacksonville, Illinois
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Author:Roth, S. John
Publication:Currents in Theology and Mission
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Oct 1, 2004
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