Determining the date of any particular Gospel is a difficult task.
Indeed, the search for literary sources that may be reflected in a piece of writing can be risky business. In the case of the Synoptic Gospels, however, we possess multiple accounts of the same events—events that originally occurred in a Hebrew-speaking environment, but were eventually recorded in Greek.
I believe that in Scriptures such as John 14:26, 16:12-15 and Matthew 18:18-20, Jesus established the principle of apostolic authority—and authorship—of the New Testament Scriptures. It seems to me that the governing thesis of the Jerusalem School, i.e., that the authentic teachings of Jesus must be “reconstructed” from our existing Gospels, contradicts this principle of apostolic authority.
Do the Gospels together comprise an accurate, factual account of what Jesus said and did, so that although they give us different views of the same facts, they are all equally correct? Or, are they only partly a factual account, thus requiring us to tease out the historical facts from the literary glosses of later editors?
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