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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Matthean Posteriority: An Exploration of Matthew’s Use of Mark and Luke as a Solution to the Synoptic Problem
MacEwen, Robert

London: T&T Clark, 2015 pp. xxiii + 309. $112.00

Series Information
Library of New Testament Studies, 501


Description: This book explores the Matthean Posteriority Hypothesis (MPH), a largely neglected solution to the Synoptic Problem which holds that the author of the Gospel of Luke used the Gospel of Mark as a source, and that the author of the Gospel of Matthew used both the Gospel of Mark and the Gospel of Luke as sources. MacEwen begins with a survey of the scholars who have defended various forms of the MPH. Chapter 2 discusses two key lines of evidence which support the MPH. The first line of evidence is textual - demonstrating that Matthew could have known the contents of Luke's Gospel beyond merely the double tradition material. The second line of evidence, involving a study of strings of verbatim agreements in the Gospels, supports the view that Matthew depended directly on Luke. Chapter 3 explores evidence and arguments which can be seen as problematic for the MPH. MacEwen concludes that the MPH has been neither definitely proved nor disproved, and deserves further scholarly scrutiny.

Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Synoptic Gospels, Literature, Methods, Historical Approaches, History, Source Criticism

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Review by J. Andrew Doole
Published 3/16/2017
Citation: J. Andrew Doole, review of Robert MacEwen, Matthean Posteriority: An Exploration of Matthew’s Use of Mark and Luke as a Solution to the Synoptic Problem, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2017).


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