Questions related to the four canonical gospels-Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Questions may refer to narratives unique to a gospel or shared between gospels.

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6
votes
2answers
511 views

Is oral history like the telephone game?

Bart Ehrman argues that the gospel texts are not historically reliable beginning with this analogy: It is [oral circulation] that causes special problems for historians who want to know what ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

How Is the Date of Composition of the Gospels Estimated?

So considering that the oldest copies of the gospels are dated to around 400 AD (I'm thinking of the Codex Sinaiticus), how do scholars go about estimating the date of composition of the gospels? I ...
7
votes
6answers
25k views

Was Jesus anointed once or twice on the feet with perfume?

Disclaimer: I've already asked this question on Christianity SE and got a great answer. I'm asking it here to get an expert response (and because it is one of my favourite stories). If the community ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Was John the Baptist confused or mistaken about the nature of Jesus' ministry?

John preached a message of imminent judgment: Luke 3:7-9 John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, "You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear ...
4
votes
2answers
88 views

Could the usage of the word “fish” be considered evidence for a later and more figurative writing of the gospels?

Per certain church teachings, the early church used the Icthus symbol as a recognization tool for other believers. The gospels as written also feature a large amount of fish imagery. Does this ...
9
votes
3answers
5k views

Reconciling the accounts of the calling of Simon Peter

How do you reconcile the two accounts of Jesus calling Peter? (Matt 4:18-19 and John 1:35-42) In the Matthew passage, Peter and Andrew are together fishing. In the John passage, Andrew was with John ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

How did the gospels get their names? [closed]

Unlike the epistles, which have the author's name at the beginning, the gospels do not say who wrote them. How did the names Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John get attached to them, and how certain can we ...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

Did Jesus have the legal authority to cleanse the temple?

The narrative of Jesus' cleansing of the temple is present in all four gospels: Mark 11:15-17, Matthew 21:12-13, Luke 19:45-46, John 2:13-17. When He cleanses the temple, there does not seem to be any ...
7
votes
3answers
951 views

In what way was Jesus' prayer heard (Hebrews 5:7)?

Hebrews 5:7 (ESV): During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of ...
16
votes
4answers
31k views

Translation of “Hosanna” (ὡσαννά)

What does "Hosanna" (ὡσαννά) mean (as it appears in the Gospels)? What is its etymology/derivation from Hebrew/Aramaic?
5
votes
2answers
12k views

What is the 'cock's crow'?

Another question of semantics - was the cock's crow which Jesus prophesied Peter would hear before he betrayed Him thrice, the crow of a rooster or a trumpet blast which happened every 3 hours, or so. ...