The question of complicity in the trial and crucifixion of Jesus has been discussed since the early days of the church, and the misapplication of guilt has done much to generate Christian anti-Semitism. In the last twenty years, however, Jewish and Christian scholars have attempted to clarify the historical setting of these events and to correct traditional misunderstandings.
The synoptic tradition contains a number of historical and literary problems. In many instances the solution to these problems lies in adopting the theory of Lukan priority, that is, the assumption that the first gospel to be written was Luke’s, which influenced Mark and, through Mark, even Matthew to varying degrees. This is the approach advocated by members of the Jerusalem School of Synoptic Research.
The significance of Lukan priority does not concern just the meaning of individual pericopae, but affects our understanding of the entire synoptic relationship. A number of Lukan solutions have been acknowledged within established New Testament scholarship; however, few scholars have realized the full significance of the priority of Luke’s gospel and its importance for establishing the historicity of the events described.