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In the preface to the former volume of this book we declared 
the general purpose of our undertaking to be the study and, so 
far as possible, the explanation of the Beginnings of Christianity. 
Before, however, attempting to reconstruct this history we 
believed it necessary to study Acts in the light of the results 
of modern criticism. Unfortunately some of our reviewers 
considered that we were already endeavouring fully to recon- 
struct the narrative. This was not our purpose, which was in 
fact to indicate the points necessary to a more detailed study of 
Acts and suitable as prolegomena. Later on we hope to return 
to the subject and reconsider the narrative of the life of Jesus, 
and the influence on the Church of his own teaching and of the 
teaching of others about him, — two subjects which are not 
identical though necessarily related. 

In the present volume we have endeavoured to deal with the 
difficult questions of the composition and authorship of Acts 
and the history of their treatment by other critics. We greatly 
regret that the important works of Professor Zahn and Professor 
Loisy on the Acts did not reach us in time to be mentioned. 

We have begun by dealing in the first part with the Greek 
and Jewish traditions of writing history, which must necessarily, 
by their points of affinity with Acts, modify our estimate of the 
book as a record of events ; Professor de Zwaan has dealt with 
the language of Acts, and Mr. Clarke with its relation to the 
Septuagint ; Professor Burkitt has discussed Luke's use of 
Mark, whilst we ourselves have treated the sources employed 
by the author of Acts and the light thrown by analysis on the 



history, purpose, and theology of the book. In the second 
part the topic is the question of authorship. Professor Cadbury 
has collected the chief Testimonia Vetermn, and discussed their 
value ; Mr. Emmet has stated the case for the identity of the 
author of iVcts with the Luke who was the companion of Paul, 
and Professor Windisch has given the arguments in favour of 
the opposite view. The last part is devoted to two short state- 
ments by President McGifiert and Mr. Hunkin of the history 
of the criticism of Acts. We were very glad to be enabled, 
through the kind introduction of Professor Burkitt, to allow 
British scholars to be represented by one of themselves. 

It remains for us to justify one of the appendices which to 
some of our readers may appear to have little connection with 
Acts. In modern historical work the psychological factor has 
attained a prominence which it did not formerly possess. It 
may, indeed, be prophesied that the writers of the future will 
be less occupied with the collection of material, its analysis 
and synthesis, than with the application of psychology to the 
established facts and to the problems raised. It is not within 
our purpose to offer an elaborate contribution to this important 
subject ; but we have thought it well to illustrate the way in 
which the figures of history were soon invested with new 
characteristics, so that in the subsequent development of thought 
concerning them these new and relatively unhistorical features 
became more important than the original facts. How this could 
happen can only be explained by the psychology of authorship. 
In order to concentrate attention on two aspects of this fact, 
apart from the details of the history with which we are more 
im^mediately concerned, we have chosen two examples from ages 
remote from the first appearance of Christianity. Mr. Coulton 
has given the facts concerning the true Saint Francis of Assisi 
and the literary image which was subsequently created by 
Franciscan piety. There would never have been a Franciscan 
Order without the true Saint Francis, but what would have been 
its history had not the unhistorical image been created ? Our 


second example is even more remote from Acts, — the story of 
Margaret Catch pole, which happened to be familiar to one of the 
editors. The extreme dissimilarity of this material from any- 
thing in the New Testament rendered it admirably adapted to 
focus attention on the points where comparison was important, 
— the complicated redaction of a simple narrative and its manipu- 
lation of non- literary sources which are happily still extant. 
It affords an example of how an intelligent and honest man 
endeavouring to make history out of imperfect material often 
makes it impossible to decide what actually happened, because 
the psychology of authorship impels him quite unconsciously 
to change problems into propositions. Similarly for the 
historian of the Church — not of the life of Jesus — the Fourth 
Gospel and the Jesus imagined by its author are more important 
than the Jesus of history portrayed in the Gospel of Mark ; and 
probably the Paul of Acts is more important for the same purpose 
than the Paul of the Epistles. 

In this way we have tried to prepare for a better understand- Reasons 
ing of the great history known as Acts, That it is history and history, 
that it is great we do not doubt, for great histories are evoked 
by great events. Herodotus had seen the liberation of Greece 
from the ever-present danger of Persian despotism, Thucydides 
had witnessed the rise of the Athenian democracy and its collapse 
before the disciplined, military aristocracy of Sparta, Josephus 
the terrible ruin of the theocratic state of Judah, while Eusebius 
had passed through the last and greatest persecution to witness 
the triumph of the Christian Church under Constantine. When 
a man with the historic instinct survives a great revolution 
in human affairs, he is irresistibly impelled not only to 
record his experiences, but to go backward into the past and 
investigate the causes of the catastrophe he has witnessed. 
Thus Herodotus surveys the ancient world and makes the nations 
pass in review before him till he is prepared to relate the main 
theme of his history ; Thucydides begins with a description of 
ancient Athens and its manners and customs ; Josephus recapitu- 


lates the history of Israel to lead up to the outbreak of the final 
struggle with Rome ; Eusebius sketches the course of Christian 
history from the first before he brings us to his own personal 
experiences of the martyrs of Palestine and to the conversion 
of the Emperor Constantine. As historians these writers take 
a comprehensive view, and so co-ordinate events as to make 
them lead up to their result. 
Historians Accuracy, firmness of judgment, impartiality, and many 

Mtfsts.^ other quahties are virtues in a historian, but not always 
found. Lord Macaulay, for example, is rightly ranked by 
those most competent to judge among the greatest writers of 
history ; yet who can read his magnificent story of the Revolu- 
tion of 1688 and den}^ that it is the account of a partisan ? 
His description of England in the seventeenth century will 
remain a monument of historical writing, but some statements 
have proved misleading and inaccurate. No one reading his 
description of the non- jurors can fail to recognise the bias of the 
writer against them, and further acquaintance with the subject 
reveals that he was completely out of sympathy with their aims 
and constitutionally incapable of appreciating their virtues. But 
these defects are compensated for by great learning and power 
of vivid description. It is true that some inaccuracies are 
unpardonable, as when the historian repeats on trust that which 
a little trouble would have enabled him to correct. There is a 
partiality which is even more worthy of condemnation, when 
persons, parties, or nations are wilfully misrepresented and mis- 
j udged, and a writer's bias makes him neglect or suppress evidence 
which would tell against his case ; for the duty of the advocate 
is almost the crime of the writer of history. But it may be even 
a matter for commendation if a writer knows where to leave out 
cumbrous details which only obscure the effect of his picture, 
and where to heighten the impression he desires to create by a 
few vivid touches of his own. There is a Muse of History as of 
other arts, and he who serves her has the rights of an artist. He 
must throw his own personality into his work and endeavour to 


make his reader take a general view of events. He has to produce 
a picture rather than a ground plan or even a photograph, and 
he may, no more than the painter, be estimated by the mere size 
of his work. He may be a very poor artist although his canvas 
is immense, and great genius may be contained in the smallest 
of frames. Gibbon's greatness consists not in the vastness of 
his design, but in the ability with which he dealt with his subject. 
Indeed more skill and mastery of detail may be shown in the 
record of a day than in a description of a century. The true 
historic instinct manifests itself in the power to recognise what 
is important and interesting and to reject the trivial. Every 
one is familiar with writers who can search archives with amazing 
care, and produce a narrative as inconsequent as it is dull and 
tedious. But the genius of an historian is shown when in a few 
pages a man or a period stands out in unmistakable vividness. 

But history means many things, and it is necessary to Scientific 
define what is implied in the term, or, at least, to recapitulate ' ^' 
the different senses in which the word can be employed. Modern 
historians delight to attach to their work the epithet "scientific."' 
They are sometimes ridiculed for so doing, but without reason. 
For all good work must be thus described. The word "science" 
is often connected with a certain dryness and meticulous accuracy, 
and to us the word is usually applied to those processes of 
thought which are popularly supposed to result in precise and 
well-defined conclusions. The scientific man, whether he be a 
mathematician or engaged in the pursuit of natural economic 
or even moral sciences, is supposed to argue from the seen to its 
causes or results to the exclusion of the imaginative faculties. 
Yet no one would repudiate such a definition more earnestly than 
the true scientist. He would point out that the imagination had 
its part in his severest studies, and that the only restraint he 
would place upon it is that he would not permit it to lead him 
to abandon the demonstrable path of truth based on accurate 
observation. And here the historian, and for that matter the 
.theologian, is only anxious to claim to follow his example. Deal- 


ing as they often have to do with very uncertain factors, requiring 
undoubtedly a considerable exercise of the imagination, both 
desire to treat their materials with accuracy and impartiality. 
They are as Uable to error as are their so-called " scientific " 
brethren, and when they see that they have erred they are as 
ready to abandon their position and to take up a fresh one. 
Those who do this, who work honestly and without unfair pre- 
suppositions, can truly claim that their work is scientific. 

In forming an ideal of what the " science " of history should 
be, as in every branch of human learning there is a constant 
advance and the science of one age becomes the obscurantism 
of the next. The older method differs from the new, in history 
as elsewhere in the treatment of sources. There was a common 
but by no means universal tendency in antiquity to receive 
the statements of earlier writers with little or no investigation. 
Historians accepted the authorities of the past much as 
for generations naturalists did the statements of Aristotle and 
Pliny the Elder. In our day the investigator tries to go 
behind his authority and to sift the evidence of his state 
ments with all the information and ingenuity at his command. 
This may be described as a method in historical investigation 
which has only been fully adopted in comparatively recent days. 
Political Science, strictly speaking, has no motive but a desire to record 

facts with exactitude. But those who write history almost 
invariably set about their task to prove something which they 
have at heart. Tacitus, for example, was a great historian, but 
he wrote as a politician. He had a theory to maintain, and 
desired to show that the best government for the Roman empire 
was that of the old aristocracy, guided, if necessary, by a virtuous 
prince. He saw in the century before his life-time a departure 
from the principle in the rule of a succession of tyrants who 
conciliated the proletariat. He deliberately ignored the un- 
doubted benefits conferred on the empire by Tiberius, and 
throws over his latter days a darker cloak of infamy than the 
facts seem to justify. In this writer we have pohtical history 



inferior to truly scientific history, but superior to the kind which 
must next be described. 

A great deal which passes for history has been written with Pragmatic 
the object of pointing a moral or adorning a tale, the writer's 
aim being to edify rather than to inform. A familiar example 
of this is the book of Judges in the Old Testament. Chapters 
iii.-xvi. are arranged on a definite plan, each incident being 
recorded in order to emphasise the same lesson, that national sin 
brings punishment, and repentance deliverance. This method 
is common in the Old Testament. The interest of the reader 
is aroused by the story, and thus the moral is driven home. But 
this artifice is by no means confined to a portion of humanity, 
it pervades all literature, and was especially prevalent through- 
out the Roman world in the days of primitive Christianity. 
Whether the subject chosen was a nation or a society or an 
individual, the moral was the chief thing. Whatever may have 
been the methods of the writer of Acts, or the sources which he 
used, he was assuredly no exception. Acts is history, but history 
compiled with a purpose and with a moral. It is our hope to 
have contributed something in this volume to the better under- 
standing of the method of its compilation, of the purpose with 
which it was written, and the moral it was intended to enforce. 



Introductiox ...... 3 

I. The Greek and Jewish Traditions of writing History. 

Henry J, Cadbury and the Editors . . .7 

II. The Use of the Greek Language in Acts. J. de Zwaan 30 

III. The Use of the Septdagint in Acts. W. K. L. Clarke 66 

IV. The Use of Mark in the Gospel according to Luke. 

F. C. BURKITT . . . . .106 

V. The Internal Evidence of Acts. The Editors . 121 


Introduction. The Editors .... 207 

I. The Tradition. Henry J. Cadbury . . 209 

II. The Case for the Tradition. C. "\V. Emmet 265 

III. The Case against the Tradition. H. Windisch . 298 

IV. Subsidiary Points. Henry J. Cadbury and the Editors 349 


I. The Historical Criticism of Acts in Germany. A. C. 

McGipfert . . . . .363 

II. British Work on the Acts. J. W. Hunkin . 396 



Appendix A — Two Literauy Analogies. 

1. The Story of St. Francis of Assisi. 

G. G. CouLTON . . .437 

2. The Story of Margaret Catchpole. 

The Editors .... 464 

Appendix B — Vestigia Christi. F. C. Bcrkitt , . 485 

Appendix C — Commentary on the Preface op Luke. Henry 

J. Cadbury .... 489 

INDEX ....... 511 





In the middle of the eighteenth century it was suggested that Higher 
Moses had used two separate documents when he wrote the and the 
Book of Genesis. The important consequences of this view ^•^' 
were only slowly recognised, and it was not till after more than 
a century that scholars realised that the Five Books of Moses 
and the Book of Joshua were composite and represented very 
different strands of thought and development. Those who tried 
to follow up this line were often the victims of outraged orthodoxy, 
Anglicanism repudiated Colenso, Presbyterianism Robertson 
Smith in Scotland, and Briggs and Henry Preserved Smith in 
America. Nevertheless the correctness of the Higher Criticism 
in its main conclusions was perforce recognised by all competent 
scholars throughout the world, and those who advocated its 
adoption are trusted and honoured as the safest exponents of 
modern orthodox Christianity. 

The controversy on the Old Testament was due to the fact HL^toricai 
that in their dealing wdth the Old Testament the Higher Critics analytical, 
turned from analysis to history. Not content with ingenious 
attempts to resolve the Hexateuch into its component parts, 
they applied the results they had arrived at to the elucidation 
of the history of Israel. It then appeared that the whole story 
had completely to be retold from a standpoint entirely different 
from that of the older writers. There was loss and gain in the 
process. Many cherished beliefs had to be given up, many 
interpretations useful for moralisation abandoned ; but the 
historians and prophets of the ancient covenant appeared in a 
new light, and what had once been regarded as infallible, in 
ceasing to be so, became intelligible. 



N.T. New Testament criticism has hitherto, in EngHsh-speaking 

hesitetM communities, been kept too much outside the sphere of historical 
*° ^^ . research. There is general agreement, for example, that the 
Synoptic Gospels consist of allied documents, dependent partly 
on one another and partly on common sources now lost. The 
dependence of Matthew and Luke on Mark has been demon- 
strated and widely accepted ; so that though the synoptic 
question stiU presents many problems to be solved, the main 
outlines of the work have been traced and agreed upon. Similarly 
much has been done to elucidate the travels of Paul, and the 
circumstances under which he wrote, but little or nothing to 
show how his development of theological and Christological 
thought is related to the analysis of the Gospels. We have the 
analogies to Driver's Introduction to the Old Testament, but not 
to Robertson Smith's Old Testament in the Jewish Church. 
Need for the Bccausc SO little has been done to push the matter of synoptic 
o.T. criti- criticism to a logical conclusion, it is widely held that whereas 
cism to be j^q criticism of the Old Testament has overturned many tradi- 

apphed to 

the N.T. tional beliefs concerning it, that of the New only confirms its 
position. Even in Germany little has been done to place before 
the public the effect which the study of the synoptic problem 
has had on the history of the beginnings of the Christian reUgion. 
The three chief contributions, Bousset's Kyrios Christos, J. Weiss' a 
Urchristentum, and W. Wrede's Das Messias-Geheimniss are 
technical works, comprehensible only to those who have mastered 
the details of the subject. What therefore is necessary in the 
future is to do for the New Testament what Robertson Smith 
did for the Old. Perceiving that the entire history of Israel had 
to be remodelled if the Graf-Wellhausen theory were accepted, 
in his Old Testament in the Jewish Church and his Prophets 
of Israel he placed before the English-speaking world the 
conclusion to which modern criticism had led.^ In clear and 

^ To guard against misapprehension the Editors would disclaim any attempt 
to do this in the present work. Their aim is to provide material for it. Before 
we can tr}' to " explain Christianity " it is well to ask what Christianity actually 
was in its earliest years. 


intelligible language he pointed out that a new era in Biblical 
history had dawned, and that every event in the progress of the 
Chosen People had to be viewed in its light. The translations 
into Enghsh of Wellhausen's and Kuenen's accounts of the religion 
and history of Israel made clear what Robertson Smith's lectures 
had suggested. Every one realised that the older histories, 
however brilliantly written, had been superseded ; that the 
Hexateuch was the outcome of the early story of the nation, and 
not the basis on which every event after the death of Moses 

As soon as this had been done, and the general outlines of 
the history of Israel re-established, it was possible to go back 
and reconsider many of the details of criticism. The tentative 
analysis of documents could now be revised and corrected. So 
criticism and history went hand in hand. But the reconstruction 
of the earlier periods had to wait for the analysis of the later 
documents. The correct appreciation of the eighth century was 
not possible until the proper understanding of the reforms of 
Josiah and the Deuteronomic code had been reached. 

Guided by this experience of the study of the Old Testament, Acts 
similar progress in the New must begin by the critical study of criticism 
Acts. Lightfoot's commentaries dealt adequately with the main P." ^•^• 

° J. ./ lines. 

problems of the Epistles, and the Synoptic question is as nearly 
solved as the problem of the Pentateuch was when Robertson 
Smith wrote. Acts is almost untouched. The essential step is 
its critical analysis, in the light of our knowledge of its back- 
ground and of synoptic criticism. 

The endeavour to discover the sources used by an author Tiie method 
and the method which he follows in his composition can be ° ""^^sis. 
made only in the light of knowledge of the plan usually followed 
by his contemporaries and, if possible, by himself in other 
writings. In the case of Acts this means a consideration of the 
methods followed by Jewish as well as by Greek writers of 
history. For though the writer was certainly a Greek he was 

^ ^N 


also deeply imbued with the tradition of the Old Testament, 
It also calls for a consideration of his methods as revealed by 
his use of the Septuagint and of the Greek language, and by his 
treatment of the Markan material in the Gospel according to 
Luke. Only when this preliminary matter has been disposed of 
is it possible to analyse the internal evidence of Acts as to its 
sources, and plan with any proper criterion as to the relative 
probability of the suggestions made by this analysis. 

The discussion of these topics has therefore been divided into 
the following chapters : (1) The Greek and Jewish Traditions of 
Writing History ; (2) the Use of the Greek Language in Acts ; (3) 
The Use of the Septuagint in Acts ; (4) The Use of Mark in the 
Gospel according to Luke ; (5) The Internal Evidence of Acts. 



By Henry J. Cadbury and the Editors 

In Josephus and Luke two streams of the writing of history 
converge. It may be said in general that the Greek and Roman 
method of composition is more varied and more artistic than 
the Jewish ; but each needs a fairly full description, at least on 
the points which come prominently forward in the criticism of 
Luke and Acts. It is easiest to begin with the Greek tradition. 

The Greek Tradition 

The tradition of Greek historiography begins with Herodotus Greek 

and continues through the Hellenistic age to the contemporaries ^g^oX*' 

of Luke, both Greek and Roman. The methods of these Gentile 

writers have something in common with those of the Jewish 

chroniclers, but the Hellenistic writing of history is perhaps more 

self-conscious, more expressive of its principles, and offers a 

more considerable body of material from which to reconstruct 

the theory and practice of its composition.^ 

^ For modem summaries see among others : E. Norden, AntiJce Kunstprosa 
(3rd edition), 1919 ; H. Peter, Die geschichtliche Literatur uber d. romische 
Kaiserzeit, 1897 ; Wahrheii und Kunst : Oeschichtsschreibiing und Plagiat im 
klassischen Altertum, 1911 ; E. Stemplinger, Das Plagiat in der grieckischen 
Literatur, 1912 ; P. Scheller, De Hcllenistica hisloriae conscribcndae arte, 1911 ; 
H. Liers, Die Theorie der Oeschichtsschreibung des Diomjs von Halikarnass, 
1886 (with much reference to Polybius and Cicero) ; F. Halbfas, Theorie und 
Praxis in der Oeschichtsschreibung bei Dionys von Halikarnass, 1910. 



of other 

Use of 

These materials are not only derived from an intensive study 
and comparison of the writings of the historians, especially 
Thucydides, Diodorus Siculus, Tacitus, and Livy, but are sup- 
plemented by essays, prefaces, or long digressions discussing 
the general principles of historical composition. Thus Dionysius 
of Halicarnassus not only produced Roman Antiquities in 
twenty volumes ; he also wrote several essays on literary 
criticism ; while Polybius is constantly filling his pages with 
trenchant discussion of earlier and contemporary historiography. 
His principal complaint is against the rhetorical historians. ^ 
The rhetorical studies — even those of later date, snd those 
composed in Latin — bear testimony to the traditional problems 
and principles of the historians, while satire contributes its share 
to the illumination of the subject in the De historiae conscribendae 
arte of Lucian.^ 

The raw materials of history were very miscellaneous and 
scattered. Official archives are mentioned as sources of in- 
formation, but less frequently quoted, and, though this does not 
necessarily follow from the absence of mention, were perhaps 
rarely used. Polybius lays stress on first-hand knowledge of 
places to be gained by travel, on participation so far as possible 
in afiairs, and on personal contact with eyewitnesses where the 
author himself was not present. Thus he criticises Timaeus 
because he had no acquaintance with the localities which he 
was describing, or with military or naval matters, or with politics.^ 
" It is difficult perhaps for a man to have been actually and 
literally engaged in everything, but in the most important 

^ Norden {op. cit. p. 82) selects as the most important criticisms made by 
Polj'bius the following passages ; Book xii. (against Timaeus) ; xvi. 17, 9 f. 
(against Zeno of Rhodes) ; ii. 56 (against Phylarchus) ; i. 14 (against Phihnus 
and Fabius). 

2 "llws Set laTopiav avyypd(p€iu" is the Greek title of this essay, which 
professes to be divided between a statement of errors to be avoided and 
of methods to be followed ; but in general it is a miscellaneous collection of 
excesses and abuses in both matter and style of historiography drawn from 
the contemporary " fever " for history-writing that resulted from the Parthian 
war. " Polybius xii. 25 g, h. 


actions and most frequently occurring he must have been so." 
" For as historical events take place in many different localities 
and as it is impossible for the same man to be in several places 
at the same time, and also impossible for him to see with his 
own eyes all places in the world and observe their pecuharities, 
the only resource left is to ask questions of as many people as 
possible ; to believe those who are worthy of credit ; and to 
show critical sagacity in judging of their reports." ^ 

The written materials of first value are the memoranda of Memoranda 
eyewitnesses, whenever these are obtainable. In the case of ^™P°y'^ 
campaigns or journeys, day-books or vTrofivrj/jLaria/jLol, were kept li'storians. 
by order of the king or official in charge and marked with his 
imprimatur. 2 Unofficial notes and diaries, reports of travellers, 
impressions of participants were all useful. AU such raw 
materials, unedited and imarranged, bore in Greek the title 
vTrofjLvrjfiara, and in Latin commentarii. Many such writings were 
written, in spite of the author's personal participation, in the 
third person, as in the weU-known commentarii of JuHus Caesar. 
But that others, including satirical and fictitious u7ro/j.v7]/jiaTa, 
used the first person is only natural.^ 

The first task of the ancient historian was the discovery and Ancient 
collection of this raw material. This, if undertaken conscien- Research. 
tiously, was an arduous task requiring years of time and a great 
deal of effort. But there were historians, as Polybius scornfully 
reminds us,* who wrote their histories by the easy method of 
the armchair. They knew nothing of the labours of true research, 

^ Polybius xii. 4 c. 

- On the vTroixv7)ixaTi(rnoL see Wilcken, Philologus, liii. (1894), pp. 80-126. 

* G. JMisch, Oeschichie der Autobiographie, i. 1907, mentions as written in 
the first person the memoirs of Ptolemy Euergetes IT. in 24 books, and the 
vita of Augustus in 13 books, and from Jewish sources the vita of Joscphus and 
the memoirs of Nehemiah. Purely fictitious " we "-tales may be illustrated 
from Lucian's True History and Icaromenipptis. For other fictitious travel 
stories in the first person see E. Norden, Agnostos Theos, p. 313. 

* xii. 25 e ivioi. 5e tCiv 5oKovvTix>v eu\67t«;s Trpoadyeiv irpbs ti]v iaToplai', Kaddirtp 
OL \oyiKoi Tu)v iarpwv ivdiaTpixf/avTes rats pi^XiodrjKais Kal Ka66\ov ttjv ^k tQv 
inro/xvrjfj.a.Tuji' wepLironjadixeuoi. TToXinreLpiav weLOovaiv avTovi ws ficres 'iKavol wpb'i t'i]v 
iTnjSo\ir]v. Cf. also Lucian, op. cit. 37 Kat toIvw koL qijuv T04oPr6s xij 6 ixadririj^ 


but relied principally upon the writings of others. Indeed for 
ancient history no other method was possible, and since the 
material was all collected by others, the historian need only 
compare authorities and arrange the material to suit his own 
purpose. This easier method seems to have been practised 
most, while the other was most praised. No moral stigma 
attached to the wholesale use of what earlier writers had 
supplied, and when this method was followed it was usual not 
to mention by name the authorities borrowed. Sometimes a 
general evioi or rtt-e? betrays the use of a previous historian,^ 
but authors are mentioned by name most often to point out 
their errors or emphasise the writer's disagreement with their 
Purposes of The purposes of ancient historians were varied. They are 
hUtorians. ofteu discusscd and compared in prefaces, as for instance is 
done by Dionysius of HaHcarnassus and Josephus in both their 
Antiquities. Polybius declares his purpose is practical ; the 
guidance of men, especially statesmen, by the lessons of history. 
" The study of history is in the truest sense an education, and 
a training for political life." ^ Sometimes the purpose is apolo- 
getic, or the history is intended to glorify the deeds of men and 
nations. But a predominant object was often to entertain or 
to interest ^ the reader. And this purpose had a considerable 
effect on the methods of the historian. 

pvv irapade56a-du. . . . olos Kai TrpdyfiCLffi xPV'^'^'^^o-'- o-f . . . Kal oXws ov tCov 
KaTOiKidiuif TLS ovo' oTos viaTeieiv fiovov to2s aTrayyeWovcn. In this passage 
KaroLKidiuv is especially deUglitfiil ; should it be translated " parlour 
patriots " ? 

^ See Stemplinger, op. cit. pp. 177 fE., 219. One example may suffice : 
Plutarch's Coriolanus does not anywhere mention Dionysius of Halicamassus, 
the principal source, but in the avyKpLffis (2) Plutarch criticises Dionysius 
by name for holding a diiierent view on a certain matter. In the Life itself 
(26) this same objectionable view is mentioned as being held by ivLoi.. 

2 Polybius i. 1. Cf. iii. 4, v. 75, ix. 2, et al. 

^ Philo is not far from correctly hitting the conventional term when in 
contrast with the religious purpose of Moses' apxa^i-oKoyia, he speaks of the 
usual purpose of historians as being ^vxa-yi^yriffai {De vita Ilosis, ii. 8, p. 141 M). 
•Ivxaywyla is constantly used of Hellenistic histories : cf. 2 Mace. ii. 25 for 
another Jewish example. 


In the first place it did not require conscientious and dis- Historical 
criminating emphasis of historical fact. The abstract search for impossible' 
truth of the modern historian was possibly understood in theory, '^*^°^- 
but it was by no means the main object of ancient writers. Of 
course some historians were very credulous, and others exercised 
their judgment in avoiding extremely incredible stories. But 
the question of historicity was vigorously debated chiefly when 
some j)ersonal or national controversies were involved. The 
Greek law of restraint had a wholesome influence, and scorn is 
expressed for the very crude faith in local myths of other his- 
torians. Thus Polybius rejects ^ the fabulous tales of statues of 
Asia that are never touched by snow or rain, and the legend 
which even Theopompus records of sacred precincts in which no 
shadow is cast by the sun. Dionysius, however, while speaking 
very sceptically of certain myths,^ does not hesitate to record the 
most extravagant legends of early Rome, fuUy aware that they 
are rejected by those who strictly exclude everything /xu^wSe? 
from history,^ But it must be constantly remembered that the 
modern criticism of sources, tests of historical probability, and 
insistence on first-hand evidence were not customary in antiquity 
even among those writers who in their criticism of others and 
in their conventional claims for their own work seem most 
nearly to have understood modern criteria. 

Instead of accuracy the purpose of ancient historians tended importance 
to make the form the chief point of emphasis. As Herodian 
says,* T?}9 fiev aXriOeia'^ iv rat<; a^rj'yriaeaiv d)\iy(opr]aav, ou^ 
■jjKiara Se eTrefxeXrjdrjcrav ^pdaeo)<i re fcal evcfxjovta^;. History is 
described as an art rather than as a science. Sometimes it is 
compared with poetry,^ sometimes with the plastic arts. " One's 
whole thought must be," says Lucian,^ " that the writer of 
history must be like Phidias or Praxiteles or Alcamenes or one 

1 xvi. 12. -De Time. 5. G. 

» Ant. i. 84. 1 ; ii. 61. 1. Cf. Lucian, op. cit. 60. ■• i. 1. 1. 

* Quintil. X. 1. 31. Cf. Norden, Antike Kunslprosa, pp. 91 ff. 

« Op. cit. 51. 


form of 

of the others. For they used not to make the gold or the silver 
or the ivory or other material, but it was at hand and was set 
before them in advance, supplied by the Elians, Athenians, or 
Argives, but they only moulded and sawed the ivory, and polished 
and glued and brought it into proportion and decked it with 
the gold, and this was their art — to arrange the material properly. 
Something of this sort, then, is the task of the historian, to set 
forth the deeds that have been done and to show them as clearly 
as possible." 

The last and most important stage in the historian's task is 
the composition in rhetorical form of the material that he is 
using. Of course the v7rofivr]/jiaTa are bald, unadorned prose. 
They are therefore unfit for publication until they have been 
fitted out in rhetorical style. This contrast in style is con- 
stantly mentioned, and the rhetorical principles which history 
must follow are set forth in full. Plutarch ^ describes the 
memoirs of Aratus as written Trapepyco'; koI vtto %et/>a Bta rwv 
€'TriTV)(ovToiv ovo/jbdrcov. The same lack of rhetorical adornment 
was felt by Cicero for his own v7r6/jLVT]/u,a,^ and for the commentarii 
of Caesar.2 Lucian * criticises one who published vTro/xvrjfia 
TMv yeyovoTOiv yvfxvov crvvayayoov ev ypa<^fj KOfiiBy ire^ov koX 
'^aixanrere^, olov Kal aTparLwrrj^ dv tl<; rd KaO r]p,epav 
d7roypa(fio/j,evo<; avveOrjKev rj tcktcov rj Ka7r7]\o<; ri? av/M7rept- 
vocTTOiv rrj arpaTLa. For the real historian such material is 
the corpus vile, vTrofivTjfia tl or crw/ia a/caXXe? en koX dSiap- 
OpcoTov, to which he must bring the adornment of Ta^a and 
X,e^t9, (jyrjpiaTa and pvQp.o<^.^ History is close to oratory, and 
therefore its principles are the same.^ Indeed an important 
part of history is the oratory it contains. In the speeches of 

^ AratMs, 3. ^ Ad Att. ii. 1. 1 f. 

» Brut 262. * Z)e hist, conscrib. 16. 

^ Lucian, op. cit. 48 elra irnOeh ttjv tol^lv eirayiTu to kclWos Kal xpuvvvru} rp 
Xi^EL Kal axv/J-'^-Ti^fTW Kal pvd/nil^eTU}. 

" See Cicero, De or. ii. 15. 62. So he speaks (De legibus, i. 2. 5) of history 

as opus unum oratorium maxime, as Dionys. Hal. calls it {De Thucyd. 9) a 
vir6de(7i% prjToptKri. 


the actors the artist can more fully show his skill.^ To suppose 
that the writers were trying to present the speeches as actually 
spoken, or that their readers thought so, is unfair to the 
morality of one and to the intelligence of the other. From 
Thucydides ^ downwards, speeches reported by the historians 
are confessedly pure imagination. They belong to the final 
literary stage. If they have any nucleus of fact behind them it 
would be the merest outline in the virofivi^ixara. 

Sometimes we can see the various stages of composition in 
the works of a single writer, when for some reason or other 
certain books of his history have come down to us only rough 
hewn without any flowing rhetorical style and without the 
illustrative adornment of speeches usual in the finished volumes. 
Thus it is believed that certain books of Thucydides ^ which 
quote original records verbatim, have come from him without 
final editorial revision, while his last book is notably lacking 
in speeches. In the last eight books of Strabo the excerpts 
from his sources are given in their original form, but not 

For this ultimate stage of composition it made little difference Habit of 
whether the historian was using the real documents and memo- the style of 
randa of research or merely the finished work of some predecessor. 
In either case he must make a new work, recasting all in his 
own style by the method of paraphrase. Verbatim copying of 
sources was not tolerated, for no matter how slavishly one 
followed the substance of his predecessor's narrative one must 
recast his style. And the speeches must be the writer's own. 
When Livy follows Polybius for the facts of his narrative he 
almost regularly makes a change in the occasion and form of 
his speeches. So Plutarch and Tacitus agree very closely in 

^ Dionysius, De Thncijd. 34 tV als [5Tj,ur;7opt'ais] o'lovral rwes ti]p a.Kpav rod 
ffvyypa(f>^us eluai Sdvaiu-v. Lucian, De hist, conscrih. 58 TrXrji' i<pelTa'L <xoi r&re 
(i.e. when supplying appropriate speeches) Kal pTjTopevcrai Kai eiridei^ai Trjv tCcv 
\6ya3v dewuTTjra. 

2 Cf. Thucyd. i. 22. 

^ E.g. iv., v., viii. 



their account of Otho but give entirely different reports of his 
last address,^ Josephus, who has occasion in his parallel works 
to deal twice with the same situation, puts two different speeches 
in the mouth of Herod.^ The speech of Caesar to his soldiers 
in Dio Cassius ^ is very different from the brief address reported 
by Caesar himself* on the same occasion. When the actual 
speech had been published the historian usually mentions the 
fact as a reason for omitting any speech of his own.^ 
Rhetorical It is not ucccssary to recount here the conventional rhetorical 

artificiality, gg^^gg ^^^ deviccs which became the standards of the more 
elegant historians. There is something grotesque to modern 
eyes in the excesses of Dionysius. Even in antiquity the extreme 
artificiality of the historians aroused some protest. Polybius 
held himself free from many of the excesses which he scorned 
in others,^ and some of his criticisms and claims were conven- 

1 Plut. 15 ; Tac. Hist. ii. 47. ^ ^j i ig, 4 . ^„;, ^v. 5. 3. 

3 38. 36-46. * E.G. i. 40. 

* Sallust, Catiline, omits all Cicero's speeches against Catiline and explains 
(31) : "tunc M. Tullius Cicero consul orationem liabuit quam postea scriptam 
edidit." Tacitus significantly says of Seneca's published last words that he 
would omit transferring them to his pages in paraphrase {Ann. xv. 63 "quae 
in vulgus edita eius verbis invertere supersedeo "). 

® Polybius uses among other phrases virep^okrj repareias. One of the 
abuses to which Polybius and others object is the excessive use of speeches. 
Timaeus as usual receives severest censure, because in his speeches " he has not 
written down the words actually used, nor the real drift of these speeches ; 
but, imagining how they ought to have been expressed, he enumerates aU the 
arguments used, Uke a schoolboy declaiming on a set theme " (xii. 25 a). 
" Surely," he says again, " a historian should not aim at producing speeches 
which might have been delivered, nor study dramatic propriety in details Uke a 
writer of tragedy : but his function is above all to record with fidelity what was 
actually said or done, however commonplace it may be. For the purposes of 
history and of drama are not the same " (ii. 56). In a later passage (xxxvi. 1) 
he expresses very clearly his restraint — he does not reject giving the appropriate 
arguments on either side on some occasions, but this convenient practice should 
not be indulged in at every point. Although Dionysius joins in this protest 
(Ad Pomp. 3. 12) he is one of the worst offenders, the speeches amountmg, 
according to Liers (op. cit. p. 14), to about one-third of his history. This is 
one of the faults removed by Plutarch when he uses Dionysius, as in the Corio- 
larius (see above). According to H. Peter {Wahrheit und Kunst, p. 356) there 
are more than four hundred speeches in the extant thirty-five books of Livy, 
while the speeches of Thucydides occupy one-fifth of his text (ibid. p. 120). 
The ratio just mentioned is also that of the book of Acts. Lack of proportion 


tionally accepted by writers who did not follow his example. 
The habit of adopting the style of memoirs, and the emphasis 
laid on having been an eyewitness were valued as Literary 
artifices. It is noteworthy that some unrevised memoirs and 
excerpts from earlier histories have survived, and these serve 
to illustrate the material on which much rhetorical history was 
based. It is thus possible to compare the more conventional 
finished product with the original. 

It is interesting now to ask how far these Hellenistic prin- Lucan 
ciples affect the composition of the writings of Luke. The ^"ted^bv 
Christian author's Semitic and rehgious background do not *^^ above, 
guarantee him any exemption from the literary standards of his 
day. Josephus the Jew, his contemporary, is largely under the 
spell of these principles. He edits the unrhetorical records of 
the Bible, inserting long rhetorical speeches invented to suit his 
own tastes, and compiles an Antiquities of the Jev/s in twenty 
volumes to match the work of Dionysius of Halicarnassus. The 
author to Theophilus is perhaps not so Hellenised as Josephus, 
and yet he may have been a Gentile and no Jew. His prefaces 
and dedications at once suggest classification with the contem- 
porary Hellenistic historians. With Mark in our hands we can 
frequently confront his work with the unpolished viroiMvrj^ia 
which he paraphrases, corrects, and recasts in his own style. In 
Acts the elaborate, homogeneous and schematic speeches suggest, 
if not the rhetoric, at least the free composition of the speeches in 
Greek and Roman histories, while the " we-passages " raise the 
insoluble problem of the use, imitation, or incorporation of 
autoptic records or the participation of the author in the events 
which he records. 

between the preface and the body of a work, the excesses of imitation and 
many other things satirised by Lucian in his essay are only exaggerations 
of the current stylistic frigidity, artificiality, and credulity of Hellenistic 


The Jewish Tradition 
Use of The tradition of historical writing among the Jews is ade- 

documents . , , r ^ • ^ 

in biblical quatelj represented, in a series oi documents some of which over- 
^^°^y- lap the others, in the Old Testament, in the Apocrypha, and in 
Josephus. In these each writer makes use of the material pro- 
vided by his predecessor, and the beginning of the process is 
hidden ; for even the earliest of the books which have come down 
to us depend on sources no longer extant. The critical study of 
the earher historical books has revealed that there were several 
documents employed in the composition of their history. To 
take 2 Samuel as a single example there is an allusion, as in 
Joshua, to a " book of Jasher," and lists of David's wives, 
ministers, and warriors obviously copied from possibly official 
sources. Poems and sayings are introduced to illuminate the 
narrative. Prayers, both in 2 Samuel and also in 1 Kings, 
are made by David and Solomon, obviously the free composition 
of the writer. 

A little later there is an elaborate example of the employ- 
ment of sources and the introduction of literary devices in the 
work of the Chronicler, including the books of Ezra and Nehe- 
miah. Still later, in 1 Maccabees, there is opportunity for 
studying a later Jewish composition designedly written in biblical 
style. Of this the first chapters are specially important as 
resembling the historical style and religious tone of the prophetic 
writers. These deal with the story of the Syrian persecution, 
begun by Antiochus Epiphanes, and the career of Judas 
Maccabaeus. It is possible to check the correctness of what is 
here stated by using 2 Maccabees, an independent work. 
Finally, these historical books became the basis of the Antiquities 
of Josephus, who has treated them with a freedom which may 
supply a clue to other contemporary literary compositions. This 
freedom also appears in the translators of the Old Testament, 
who either had a text of the Old Testament different from ours 
or else felt themselves at liberty to adapt, rearrange, and expand 


or contract, to a greater degree than a modern would feci justified 
in doing. All this deserves attention in order to illustrate the 
standards to which translators and editors in early days con- 

The interest in these books to a student of the New Testa- Literary 
ment lies in the fact that they not only throw much light on the chronicicj 
literary methods of the Jews in the Exile and in the Persian 
and Greek periods, but that the problems they present are 
analogous, if not parallel, to those of the historical books of the 
New Testament, the Gospels, and Acts. 

The Chronicler, like the author of the Lucan books, used 
sources, some of which we have within the cover of the Bible, 
and adapted them to the object they had in view. No one can 
fail to notice how the narrative of Samuel and Kings is altered 
to suit the decidedly legalistic bias of the age. All that could 
detract from the high estimation in which Da^dd and Solomon 
were held is omitted, and much is added to the narrative with 
the object of edification. Throughout are inserted speeches and 
prayers, many of which appear to be the work of the author. 

All the books of this series — Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah — 
are avowedly compilations. They refer to authorities and 
reproduce documents. In Chronicles no less than fifteen sources 
are enumerated ;i in Ezra-Nehemiah registers, letters of Persian 
kings, decrees, etc. are introduced, and there are in addition 
personal memoirs, as has been shown, professedly written by 
Ezra and Nehemiah. But the Chronicler is no mere collector ; 
he has a marked style of his own and gives to all the material 
he uses the impress of his personality.^ A dry legalist he assuredly 
was not ; for he possessed the power of telling a story vividly 
and dramatically. And here the " personal " sections in Ezra- 

1 Torrey, Ezra Studies, pp. 228-229. 

2 Dr. Torrcy's chapter vii. in his Ezra Studies is peculiarly valuable. He is 
the first English-speaking scholar who has shown that Chronicles is an interesting 
study, as Dr. Cheyne was to indicate that it was important. Most commenta- 
tors seem to have made the student believe that it is a very dull book. 



Nehemiah are of special interest to the student of Acts. The 
same question arises, Are these sections written in the style 
of the author or not ? In Chronicles, Ezra, and Nehemiah the 
answer, according to Dr. Torrey, appears to be decidedly in the 
affirmative. In the opinion of many the style is uniform through- 
out, and there is no variety when Ezra or Nehemiah is speaking 
in his own name. 

Moreover, there are two Greek recensions of Ezra and there 

is a dispute as to which is the earlier ; and the problem of 

translation from the Aramaic occurs in certain portions of the 

Greek Ezra (1 Esdras). 

Summaryof The book of Ezra opens with a repetition of the last two 

recension vcrscs of 2 Chroniclcs, Only it gives the decree of Cyrus in some- 

of Ezra. what fullcr form.^ The people make ready to go up to Jerusalem. 

Cyrus hands the treasures of the Temple to Mithredath, who 

delivers them to Sheshbazzar the leader of ' ' those of the captivity ' ' 

from Babylon to Jerusalem.^ Then follows a list of people and 

priests who returned.^ On their arrival Jeshua, the son of 

Jozadak, the high priest and Zerubbabel, the son of Shealtiel, 

set up the altar and lay the foundations of the Temple.* 

Seeing the Jews commencing to build the Temple the "adver- 
saries of Judah and Benjamin" ask leave to co-operate and are 
repelled by Zerubbabel.^ Whereupon, ' ' in the days of Artaxerxes ' ' 
a letter is written " in the Syrian tongue " complaining of the 
Jews.^ The letter states that if the city of Jerusalem is built 
and the gates set up the Jews will refuse to pay taxes or tribute. 
Nothing is said of the building of the Temple. The answer of 
the king prohibits the building of the city ; and the work ceases 
till the second year of Darius.'^ Then the prophets Haggai and 
Zechariah urge that the Temple should be built ^ ; and Tattenai, 
the governor, Shethar-boznai, and " his companions the Aphar- 

1 Ezra i. 1-4; 2 Chr. xxxvi. 22-23. ^ e^,.^ i. 5-11. 

3 Ezraii. 1-70. ' Ezra iii. 1-13. 

* Ezra iv. 1-6. * Ezra iv. 7-16. 

' Ezra iv. 17-24, esp. 21 and 24. » e^j.^ v. 1, vi. 14. 


sachites " write to Darius informing him that the Jews are re- 
building the Temple and asking that search be made whether 
there was a decree of Cyrus allowing them to do so.^ A roll 
is found at Achmetha in the palace, proving that Cyrus had 
ordered the Temple to be built and prescribing its dimensions.^ 
Darius, accordingly, commands the rebuilding of the Temple, 
which was finished on the third day of Adar, in the sixth year 
of Darius, and was solemnly dedicated.^ 

In the next chapter Ezra, " a ready scribe in the law of Moses," 
goes up from Babylon to Jerusalem " in the seventh year of 
Artaxerxes." He takes with him a letter from Artaxerxes, giving 
him extensive powers to restore the worship at Jerusalem, and 
exempting the priests, Levites, and all Temple ministers from 
taxes.'* Then, as abruptly as in Acts, a section in the first person 
is introduced, which continues for fifty-three verses.^ The 
narrative in the third person is resumed as suddenly as it was 
abandoned, " Now when Ezra had prayed," etc.'' The present 
book of Ezra closes as abruptly as the Gospel of Mark, with an 
unfinished sentence.'^ 

Nehemiah is introduced like the prophets by a preface : Summary of 
" The words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah." His narrative 
is given in the first person and extends over seven chapters,^ 
at the end of which is transcribed a genealogy " which I found 
registered" of those who had come up with Zerubbabel. This 
is virtually a repetition of the second chapter of Ezra.^ Again, 
without warning, the third person appears in the story of Ezra 
the scribe *° reading the Law and Nehemiah the governor ex- 
horting the people not to be dismayed, but to keep the feast of 
Tabernacles. After the feast the people made a solemn covenant, 

1 Ezra V. 6-17. " Ezra vi. 1-5, esp. 3-5. 

3 Ezra vL 6-22. * Ezra vii. 1-26, esp. 1, 6, 11, 24. 

5 Ezra vii. 27 to ix. 15. * Ezra x. 1. 

' Ezra X. 44; Mark xvi. 8. ^ Neh. i.-vii. 5. 
'' Neh. vii. 6-73. Cf. Ezra ii. 1-70. 

'" Nc'h, viii. 1. Ezra is also called " tlu^ priest " in Ezra x. 10 where, as here 
{l: 2), the narrative is in the third person. 



prefaced by a long confession of national sin by tbe Levites.^ 
A list is given of those who subscribed, in which Ezra's name is 
conspicuously absent. In the substance of the covenant which 
follows the first person plural is employed.^ A chapter and a 
half is devoted to a list of names ; ^ and then, quite abruptly, 
the account of the dedication of the Wall of Jerusalem is resumed. 
From this point to the end of the book Nehemiah is made to 
wT-ite partly in the first person.* 
Snmmaryof Ezra appears in two forms in Greek. The version which 

1 Ksdras. 

represents the Hebrew, as we now have it, is that of Theodotion.^ 
But an earher one was knowni to Josephus which is otherwise 
arranged, and differs from that of the Hebrew Ezra in many 
important particulars, and has significant additions. It begins 
with an account of Josiah's Passover, taken from the narrative 
of 2 Chronicles, and follows the Chronicler in describing the 
destruction of Jerusalem and the Captivity. It agrees with the 
Hebrew Ezra in giving the decree of Cyrus and the preparation 
for the Return.'' The vessels of the Temple were entrusted to 
Sheshbazzar, or, as the Greek has, Sanabassar, the governor of 
Judah, apparently a Persian official who cannot possibly be 
identified with Zerubbabel.' Thus far the Hebrew and Greek 
Ezras agree ; but now a large section of the Hebrew Ezra is 
omitted and placed elsewhere, nothing being as yet said of the 
erection of the altar or the offer of the " adversaries " to join 
in building the Temple.^ The letter to Artaxerxes and his reply 
stopping the work are virtually the same in both versions, 

^ Neh. ix. The prayer is in vv. 6-38. 

2 Neh X. 28-39. ^ ^^]^^ ^i. 1-xii. 2(5. 

* Neh. xii. 27-xiii. 31. The verses in the first person are xii. 31, 38, 40 and 
xiii. 6-31. 

* It is not, however, quite certain what is the date. Tlieodotion himself 
is post-Christian, but there is some evidence which suggests that the text 
which he issued (or re-issued) is earlier. 

« 1 Esdrasi. 1-ii. 14; Ezra i. 1-11. Cf. 2 Chron. xxvi. 22-23. 

" 1 Esdras ii. 15. In Ezra i. 8 " Sheshbazzar the prince of Judah " is perhaps 
identified with Zerubabbel, Ezra ii. 2, iii. 2. In 1 Esdras vi. 18, the holy vessels 
were delivered to Zerubbabel and Sanabassarus by Cyrus (evidently a gloss by 
an ignorant .scribe). * Ezra iv. 1-3. 



only 1 Esdras does not note that the letters were origmally in 

A long section follows in the Greek, which is not in the Hebrew, 
namely, the story of how Zenibbabel obtained leave from Darius 
to finish the Temple. ^ This is no mere interpolation, but reflects 
the writer's opinion that Zerubbabel was not the prince of the 
Return under Cyrus, but only made his appearance in the reign 
of Darius. The whole order of events is different from that in 
the Hebrew Ezra, as the folio wins: table will show : — 

(1) Ezra i. Jews return from 

Babylon (Cyrus). 

(2) Ezra ii. Those who came back 

with Zerubbabel. 

(3) Ezra iii. Setting up of the altar 

by Jeshua and Zerubbabel. 
Those who had seen the glory 
of the first house weep, etc. 

(4) Ezra iv. 1-3. The offer of the 

adv^ij.g aries of Judah and 
Be^iarL^iii is repulsed. 

(5) Ezra [y^ 4-24. Correspondence 

wi ii j^t'^xsrxes ; the work is 
ore 3red tP cease. 

(6) Ezra y, 1-2. Haggai and 

2*i'^hariah incite Zerubbabel 
am Jeshv^^ to rebuild the 

(7) Ezrav 3.yi.i;2. 

between ths 
anq Darius. 

(8) Ezra yj. 13-22. Temple dedi- 

ca'tpr. ' 

Cyrus and the Hebrew 

and Greek 

" adversaries " 

(1) 1 Esdras ii. 1-15 


(2) 1 Esdras ii. 16-30. Correspond- 

ence with Artaxerxes ; the 
work ordered to cease, 

(3) 1 Esdras iii. 1-v. 6. The feast of 

Darius. Zerubbabel obtains 
permission to rebuild Temple. 

(4) 1 Esdras v. 7-55. Those who 

came back with Zerubbabel. 

(5) 1 Esdras v. 56-65. Laying the 

foundations. Those Viho had 
seen the old house weej), etc. 

(6) 1 Esdras v. 66-73. The offer of 

the " adversaries " of Judah 
and Benjamin is repulsed. 

(7) 1 Esdras vi. 1-2. Haggai and 

Zechariah incite Zerubbabel 
and Jeshua to rebuild the 

(8) 1 Esdras vi. 3-34. Correspond- 

ence between the " adver- 
saries " and Darius. 

(9) 1 Esdras vii. 1-15. Temple 


Ezra com- 

The rest of Ezra and 1 Esdras are similar ; but at the end 
1 Esdras reproduces Nehemiah viii, 1-12 — the reading of the 
Law by Esdras " the chief priest." ^ Nehemiah does not appear 
at all on this occasion, and in the verse in which the name occurs 
in the Hebrew as " Nehemiah the Tirshatha " the Greek has 

^ Ezra iv. 7 ; 1 Esdras ii. 16. 

3 1 Esdras ix. .'58-55. 

1 Esdras iii. 1-v. G. 


" Then spake Attharates to Esdras, the chief priest and 
reader." ^ 

The relation of Ezra to 1 Esdras raises the problem whether 
1 Esdras is not a translation of an early edition of the book of 
Ezra, which at a later date was replaced by the recension found 
in the Hebrew canon. If the additions and rearrangement are 
expansions of the Hebrew as we now have it, they throw an 
important Hght upon the methods of translators and the liberties 
they permitted themselves in producing their versions. This 
appears not only in 1 Esdras but elsewhere in the LXX.. notably 
in Judges, in 1 Samuel (where the whole account of David and 
Goliath is re- edited and the inconsistences in the Hebrew narrative 
removed by condensing the story), and in the book of Jeremiah. 
Either, therefore, translators allowed themselves great freedom in 
dealing with their material, or later editors of the Hebrew did so. 

The difficulty of deciding as to whether a book or passage 
in the Greek Bible is translated from a Semitic langp^gje or not 
is revealed by the contrary decisions of the experts e. "pe inter- 
polated passage in 1 Esdras about the Three Youti^Jig ^ las been 
declared to be unmistakably Greek by some scholait's ai^ equally 
clearly to be a translation from the Aramaic by o'^l^ers. ^^ ^^® 
same problem occurs in regard to the first half <()f Aci^' similar 
methods have to be applied to the solution of both ai^^ similar 
hesitation may be expected. \ 

1 Macca- The first book of Maccabees is an example of a ^larrative 

originally in Hebrew which has come down only '^ ^ Greek 
translation. The first part which concerns our purpose is the 
story of Judas Maccabaeus told with a markedly religious purpose. 
The thought is clearly that of the Old Testament. Yet its 
diction lacks that archaic restraint of the early canonical Scrip- 
tures, and is reminiscent of the last days of biblical composition ; 
in its original form it may have been, perhaps, a forecast of the 

^ 1 Esdras ix. 49. Attharates is j^robablj' the same as Tirshatha (governor), 
but it appears that Nehemiah's name is deliberately omitted in this text. 
^ 1 Esdras iii. 1-v. 6. 



Hebrew of the Synagogue. Passing over the first chapter as 
introductory, the story may be said to begin \Yith Mattathias 
and his sons in ch. ii. The narrative commences with a poetic 
lament over the fall of Israel. At the end of the same chapter, 
Mattathias makes a deathbed speech, in which he gives a 
summary of Israel's past hke Stephen's in Acts vii. or Paul's in 
Acts xiii. 16-41.1 A prayer is recorded as made by Judas and 
his company before attacking Gorgias which may be paralleled 
by that of the Apostles in Acts iv.^ There is a tendency to omit 
important details, as, for example, what led to the estrangement 
between Judas and Nicanor,^ and to introduce persons without 
explanation, like the Assidaeans, mentioned twice in 1 Maccabees. 

It is interesting, further, to compare 1 Maccabees with the 2 Macca- 
second book bearing that name as showing how the history can parallel 
be checked by an independent document. It was customary pg^^j'^'^jf^"' 
to declare 2 Maccabees to be valueless in comparison with narrative 
the earlier history ; but a reaction against this judgment has 
set in, and a high value is now, in many quarters, set on the 
second book, which possesses an additional interest in being 
professedly based on a lost history by Jason of Gyrene.* The 
parallel chapters are 1 Mace, iii.-vii. and 2 Mace, viii.-xv. In 
both, Judas is supported by his four brothers ; but in 1 Maccabees 
their names are Joannan, Simon, Eleazar, and Jonathan, and 
in 2 Maccabees Simon, Joseph, Jonathan, and Eleazar. Thus, 
as with the Twelve Apostles, the names and order differ in the 
enumeration. The first victory of Judas is related thus in the two 
books : — 

1 Maccabees. 2 Maccabees. 

Judas wins renown by his irregu- viii. 1-7 virtually the same as 

lar warfare against Syrians and 1 Mace. iii. 1-9. Philip (Governor 

apostates (iii. 1-9). Apollonius of Jerusalem, 2 Mace. v. 22) sends 

gathers a host and is defeated, for aid, and Nicanor is sent and with 

Judas takes his sword and here- him Gorgias (9) ; with them mer- 

1 1 Mace. ii. 49-70. ^ 1 Mace. iii. 50-53. 

3 1 Mace. vii. 29 f. * 2 Mace. ii. 23. 


after uses it (10-12). Seron attacks chants come to buy the Jews as 

and is defeated at Bethhoron (13- slaves. Nicanor proposes to pay 

24). Judas inspires awe (25-26). tribute to Rome with the money 

Antiochus Epiphaiies leaves for collected (10, 11). Judas divides his 

Persia in quest of money, entrusting troops between himself, Simon, 

his kingdom to Lysias, who sends Joseph, and Jonathan, appoints 

Ptolemy, Nicanor, and Gorgias Eleazar to read the holy book, and 

against Judah (27-39). They en- attacks and routs Nicanor, who 

camp at Emmaus and the merchants escapes to Antioch (12-29). Judas 

come to buy the captive IsraeUte is also said to have attacked Bac- 

slaves. The Jews pray solemnly at chides and Timotheus, and to have 

Maspha (Mizpah) (40-60). Gorgias killed Philarces, a great enemy of 

attempts a surprise ; his army is the Jews, and also Calhsthenes. 

utterly destroyed by Judas (iv. 1- The next chapter (ix.) relates the 

25). Lysias comes in person and is death of Antiochus Epiphanes, 

defeatedatBethsura (26-35). Judas which was followed in chapter x. 

is now able to rededicate the temple by the rededication of the Temple 

(36-61) and to institute the feast. and the institution of the feast. 

The above comparison discovers difficulties not wholly dis- 
similar to those presented by the often-discussed discrepancies 
between Acts and Paul's statements in Galatians. From 2 Macca- 
bees it might be inferred that Judas achieved one single success 
over Nicanor and was able to follow it up by the dedication of 
the Temple owing to the Syrian power being weakened by the 
death of Antiochus. But in the first book the dedication pre- 
cedes the news that Antiochus was dead : and here the dates 
are carefully given, the dedication being in the hundred and 
forty-eighth, and the death of Antiochus in the hundred and 
forty-ninth year (165-164 B.C.). The same species of difficulty 
as to the Apostolic Council meets the student of Acts. There 
is no parallel for the differences in the names of the Syrian 
leaders in the two Maccabean books. The fact, however, that 
2 Maccabees is avowedly an epitome from a larger history 
may explain the omission of the fuller details of the first book, 
and may also illustrate the brevity with which Acts treats the 
adventures of Paul in such a chapter as Acts xviii. 
josepiiu3 With the books of Maccabees ends the list of the canonical 

thro.T, and deutero-canonical histories of the Jews, but the whole 
ir.story. ^^^-^ ^^^ takcu up oucc morc by Josephus and rewritten for 


Greek readers. For the student of the New Testament, and 
especially of Acts, his methods are of primary importance, for 
though trained as a Jew he subsequently acquired a Greek 
education, as did probably the writer of Acts. Though the 
sources which he used for the later parts of his history are 
unknown or lost, for the earlier portion they are preserved in 
the Old Testament and Apocrypha. The historian may have 
little to learn from his retelling of the story, but the student 
of literary methods has no more valuable source of information. 

Josephus was apparently acquainted with a text resembling 
1 Esdras with the interpolations, and with our book of Nehemiah, 
and he evidently was better informed in general history, for he 
changes the names of the Persian kings which appear in the 
two Ezra documents, viz. : Cyrus [Ahasuerus], Artaxerxes, 
Darius,^ and introduces the name of Cambyses. The Return 
from the Captivity is the subject of the eleventh book of the 
Antiquities, and Josephus's account is briefly : 

Chapter I. — § 1. Decree of Cyrus — obviously taken from Josephus's 


the Bible. § 2. Cyrus acted upon a vision of Isaiah, whose Aniiq. si. 
prophecy he had studied ; perhaps this is a piece of Midrash 
added by the historian. § 3. Restoration of the vessels — from the 
Bible ; also a letter to Sisinnes and Sathrabuzanes from Cyrus, 
which in Ezra vi. 3-12 is given in connection with Darius's 
permission to build the Temple, but helps the story better in this 

Chapter II. — The Temple work is hindered after the death 
of Cyrus by the adversaries of Judah. Cambyses forbids the 
work, his name being substituted for that of Artaxerxes in 
the Ezra narrative. 

Chapter III. — § 1. Darius, whilst in a private station, had 
made a vow to God to restore the Temple ; this is taken from the 
words of Zerubbabel to him in 1 Esdras iv. 45.^ §§ 2-10. The 
story of the Three Youths and of Zerubbabel's obtaining leave 

^ Ezra iv. £f. 21. Ahasuerus is not in 1 Esdras; Joseplius, Antiq. xi. 21 f. 
^ 1 Esdras iv. 45. 


to go to Jerusalem and rebuild the Temple, virtually the same 
as in the long section peculiar to 1 Esdras.^ 

Chapter IV. — §§ 1-7 follow the arrangement of 1 Esdras and 
not that of Ezra in relating the opposition of the Cuthaeans or 
Samaritans, and the completion of the Temple under Darius.^ 
§ 8 relates the celebration of the Passover as in 1 Esdras, and 
§ 9 is a section peculiar to Josephus about an embassy of Zerub- 
babel and three others to Darius. 

Chapter V. — The story of Ezra's mission and his reforms in 
Jerusalem is continued, as it is in the two Ezra books ; but 
the Persian King is here not Artaxerxes, but Xerxes the successor 
of Darius. In § 6, however, Nehemiah appears, and the narrative 
of the book of Nehemiah is related in the historian's own words 
down to the rebuilding of the Walls and the repeopling of Jeru- 
salem.^ " He left," says Josephus of Nehemiah, " the walls of 
Jerusalem an eternal memorial of himself. Now this was done 
in the days of Xerxes." 

Chapter VI. gives the substance of the book of Esther, and 

places it in the days of Artaxerxes the son of Xerxes. From 

this it might be inferred that Josephus had other information 

which appeared sufficient for him to alter the narrative as he 

found it in the Greek of 1 Esdras. He knew, for instance, his 

Persian history more correctly. For some reason, or possibly 

because he had another text, Josephus says nothing of the 

reading of the Law by Ezra * or of Nehemiah's absence from 

Jerusalem or his return.^ Nor does he mention Sanballat at 

the same time as Nehemiah, but places him a century later in 

the time of Alexander the Great, and in a different context. 

Josephus As the story of the Maccabees is retold by Josephus, it is 

possible to see how one narrative can be checked by another, 

as Acts is by the Pauline letters. It is also interesting to observe 

how Josephus who wrote in Greek uses 1 Maccabees, originally 

^ 1 Esdras iii. 1-v. 6. It is thus evident that Josephus used 1 Esdras 
rather than the Hebrew Ezra. 

* 1 Esdras v. 47-vii. 9, vii. 10-15. " Josephus, Antiq. xi. 6-8. 

* Neh. viii. ; 1 Esdras i.x. 42. ^ Neh. xiii. 6. 



written in Hebrew, as his method throws a light on the 
possible employment by the author of Acts of Aramaic sources 
or their translations. 

Josephus follows 1 Maccabees— of 2 Maccabees he is ignorant 
— fairly closely, but here and there he adds to the narrative and 
occasionally makes a material alteration : a few examples will 
suffice to make this clear. 

The speech of Mattathias on his deathbed. In 1 Macca- Speech of 
bees the patriotism is bibhcal. The dying priest exhorts his sons 
to be zealous for the law, and to give their lives for the covenant. 
He reminds them of Abraham, Joseph, Phineas, Joshua, Caleb, 
David, Ehjah, the Three Children, and Daniel. Finally, he 
recommends them to take Simon as their counsellor and Judas 
as their leader in war. Josephus gives the speech a totally 
difEerent aspect. He concludes with the advice about Simon 
and Judas ; but he makes Mattathias exhort his sons to preserve 
the customs of their country, and to recover the ancient form 
of government. Mattathias is represented as philosophising on 
the subject of immortahty. " Your bodies," he remarks, " are 
mortal and subject to fate ; but they receive a sort of im- 
mortality by the remembrance of what actions they have done." 
Josephus obviously had the speech as given in Maccabees, but 
thought it unsuitable for his pubhc.^ 

The mention of the " Assidaeans " in 1 Maccabees evi- The 
dently perplexed Josephus, and he decided to say nothing about 
them, either because he did not know who they were or because 
his readers would not understand. But he clearly had before 
him at least one passage mentioning them ; for, after relating 
the appointment of Alcimus as high priest, he says that " some 
of the people " relying on him, deserted Judas, and obeyed the 
orders of Bacchides, the Syrian governor, and were treacherously 
murdered.- With this may be compared " Luke's " treatment 
of the Herodians whom he found in his Marcan material, e.g. 
when the warning to beware of the " leaven of the Pharisees 

1 1 Mace. ii. 50-G8 ; Anliq. xii. G. 3. ^^ 1 Mace. vii. 13 ; Anliq. xii. 10. 2. 



and the leaven of Herod " is changed into " the leaven of the 
Pharisees, which is hypocrisy." ^ 

Dedication The rcdedication of the Temple after its profanation by 

Temple. Antiochus Epiphanes in 1 Maccabees is obviously copied by 
Josephus with a few significant variations.^ The date, 25 Chislev 
in the 148th year, is given in both, only Josephus adds the name 
of the Macedonian month Apelleus and the Olympiad. He 
condenses the narrative by omitting some of the ritual details, 
but he adds that the annual feast then instituted was called the 
feast of lights. " I suppose because this liberty beyond our 
hopes appeared unto us ; and that thence was the name given 
to the festival." ^ 

Treaty with Joscphus givcs an abbreviated account of the negotiations 
between Judas and the Romans.* He omits the description 
of the RepubUc as it is given with a childlike simplicity and 
inaccuracy in Maccabees. The copy of the treaty with Rome 
is condensed and made far less difficult to understand ; and 
Josephus adds a subscription saying that it was written by 
Eupolemus, son of John, and by Jason, the son of Eleazar, when 
Judas was high priest of the nation, and Simon his brother, 
general of the armies. Just before Josephus had remarked 
that the people had elected Judas high priest, whereas 1 Maccabees 
implies that the first of the family to hold the office was 

Additions Josephus somctimcs either supplements or corrects 1 Macca- 

bees. He relates an Embassy of the Samaritans to Antiochus 
Epiphanes, expressing their readiness to apostatise and to 
dedicate their temple on Gerizzim to Zeus Hellenius, quoting 
documents ; ^ he gives the name of the officer slain by 
Mattathias as Apelles ; "^ he acknowledges that Judas w^as 
defeated by Nicanor at Caphar Salama, whereas 1 Maccabees 

1 Luke xii. 1 ; cf. Mk. viii. 15. M Mace. iv. 42 ff. ; Antiq. xii. 7. 6. 

^ Antiq. xii. 1.1. * 1 Mace. viii. 1-32 passim; Antiq. xii. 10. 6. 

5 Antiq. xii. 10. 6. ; 1 Mace. x. 20. 21. « Antiq. xii. 5. 5. 

' Antiq. xii. 6. 2 ; 1 Mace. ii. 25. 

in Josephus. 


certainly implies that there was a Jewish victory, though the 
concluding words koI ec^vyov eU rifv iroXiv AauetS are ambiguous, 
and the context implies that it may have been the men of 

A comparison of Josephus with Greek and Jewish methods 
thus shows how in him the two streams of tradition flowed 
together. It remains for others to decide how far or when 
he was influenced by the one or the other. ^ The same is 
probably true of his great contemporary, the writer of Luke 
and Acts ; here, too, the question is still imsettled, and the 
editors of this book are anxious to state as emphatically as 
possible their conviction that much more can be done by con- 
sidering how far Luke was Greek and how far Jewish in his 
methods of writing. The fomidation of all wisdom on this 
subject must be a consideration of the use made by Luke of the 
Septuagint, of the Gospel of Mark, and of the Greek language 
in general. 

1 1 Mace. vii. 31, 32; A7itiq. xii. 10. 4. 

^ The Editors regret that Laqueur's work on this subject reached them too 
late to be used. See R. Laqueur, Der jiidiscJie Historiker Flavins Josephus, 
Giessen, 1920. 




The Greek The language of the New Testament is the Greek vernacular 
KoivT]. ^£ ^j^g g^g^ century a.d. This fact is established by the study 
of Papyri and Inscriptions. 

The nature of this vernacular is not easily definable. It is 
uniform enough : Egypt does not yield the Copticisms which 
one would expect, and real Semitisms are extremely scarce. The 
difficulty lies in a peculiarity of the Greek language which cannot 
be completely paralleled from any living European tongue except 
perhaps from modern Greek itself. Then, as now, the language 
which was popularly spoken and even written differed widely 
from that used in literature. Compare, for instance, the transla- 
tion of the preface of Luke into modern literary Greek, published 
by the Bible Society, with Pallis's version in the spoken language. 

(Bible Society) (Pallis's version) 

'Kir€i.8rj TToA-Aoi t7r€\eiprj(Tav 'ETretSTys ttoXXoI Trpo<nrddi]crav 

va. (rvvTa^oicri SLrjyrjO-LV Trepl rwv to vol KaTa(rTpw(Tovv laropia twv 

/xera 7r\rjpo(f)op[as fiefiaLWjxkvMV et? TrepLcrrarLKwi' ttov fxaOafK.^ Kadios 

i^/xas Trpayp-driov, Kadio<; TrapeSocrai' fias ra TrapdSwKav 6(T0t, €i8av otto 

£ts 7y/xas 01 ajT ap^Jys yei'o/xei'oi nyv upx''! '^^^ SovXexfav ru Xoyo, 

avTOTTTai KOL VTn-jperai rod Xoyov, dTro<})d(TLcra kl eyw — ttov ^eraaa 

cc^avTj Ktti eis e/x€ evXoyor, octtis aTrb rrjv Trrjyq TOi'S oAa crwcna 

8i.r]pevvr](ra iravra e^ ^PXV^ anpt- — va cr to, ypdxpu) pe rq, 

^ws, va crot ypdxjyw Kara (reipdv XapirpoTare Gedt^iAe, yia va 

irepX Toi'rwv, KpdrLcm Geo^tAe" K'araAa^ets twv Aoywi' ttov 

8td va yv(opLcnj<; t'i]V PeftaioTrjTa KaTrjXTjdijKe'; tijv dXyjdia. 
Twv irpaypaTMv, irepi rix)V oiroiwv 



To such a degree of difference the relative independence of 
the literary from the popular idiom has arrived in our days. In 
the first century the distance was smaller, but the problems 
remain the same for us. Both forms of speech have indeed 
always been living their own lives. Even Plato's Dialogues 
were not in purely colloquial Greek, though they were much 
nearer to it than what we see here. The first problem, therefore, 
is to estimate the distance between the two idioms as they 
existed in New Testament times. This would require an approxi- 
mate knowledge of the normal literary and the normal popular 
language. With the literary idiom the difficulty is to decide at 
what point its archaising tendencies become illegitimate. With 
the popular idiom the difficulty is to find out the real laws of 
the living speech. Only extensive knowledge of the spoken 
language could warrant an opinion on these laws. One can 
easily see how difficult this is even in our days. Dealing with 
the literary language of to-day, an educated Greek with modern 
philological training would be the fit person to decide whether a 
given piece of literary prose was unduly archaising or not. A 
foreigner might perhaps obtain a sure knowledge of the real 
facts about the modern popular koivi] by living among the 
people and applying methodical research over all the field from 
Alexandria to the harbours of the Black Sea. His freedom 
from reminiscences from school-days would be an advantage, and 
make him perhaps a better observer of the actual state of 
the language. Only these methods would be really adequate, 
but it is impossible to apply them to New Testament 

The situation is, moreover, embarrassed by some tenets of Rules of 
first century school-craft. Men were as a rule not taught to tion. 
mould their literary style on the language as it was spoken by 
educated people, but the syntax, grammar, and even the co'pia 
verborum of a long-gone age were set up as a general standard. 
The development of the literary language was hampered by this, 
and whenever it followed the course of popular speech, it did so 



with a bad conscience.^ From these preliminaries it becomes 
clear why — as Radermacher has put it ^ — " the Syntax of the 
' common ' Greek leaves much room for personal caprice and 
preference. ... Its character, contrary to that of Attic Syntax, 
may be described as individualistic." This element of individual 
preference becomes evident in the different degrees in which real 
knowledge and even pedantry on the subject of the syntax of 
bygone days was assimilated and applied in practice, and, 
secondly, in the various ways in which the exigencies of clear 
periodical structure were discarded. Of course this does not 
apply to all authors. Those that stand nearest to the popular 
idiom are more consistent in following such usages as it had 
developed in its own course. 
The origin Moreovcr, the composite origin of the Koivr'} should be taken 

into account. Its main constituents seem to be Attic and Ionic 
speech. The influence, either small or great, of other dialects, 
especially of those of the North, is still disputed, but Schlageter's ^ 
studies of the Attic inscriptions abroad seem to have justified 
Thumb's * opinion that the kolvi] in its nascent stage was formed 
by a dominant influence of Attic crossed by an Ionic counter- 

^ Polybius is the notable exception, but the Anti-Atticists were powerless 
in the schools. Galen, a.d. 130-200, has devoted to tliis disease of Atticism 
a treatise against rot's eVtri/xiij/ras rots croKoiKl'^ovcn rrj (pcovfi, but no Dante, 
Petrarch, or Boccaccio arose to break the old routine by high achievement in 
the literary use of the Uving speech. What remained liidden from their 
eyes Dante saw and expressed in the beginning of his De vulgari eloquentia : 
" The common speech is the more noble, because it was the first mankind 
made use of, because it is of service to the whole world . . . because, finally; 
it is natural to us, while the literary idiom enjoys rather an artificial existence." 
The labours of the Anti-Atticists were unfruitful, and the irony even of so 
great a man as Galen was lost : vi. 633. 4 (Kuhn) tovto to Xdxo-vov [sc. t7]v 
Kpdfi^yjv'] ol rrjv iiriTpLTiTOv \pevSoiTai5eLav affKovvres ovofid^eiv d^iovai " jidcpavov,^'' 
• Ctjcnrep rots irpd e^aicoaiiav irOiv ' AOrivaloLs dLoKeyopLeviov rjfx^ii', dW ovxi- tois vuv 
"EXXt/ctu', or vi. 584. 12 o^toi [sc. oi iarpoi] yap old' on ttjv /xev ' AdTjvaiwv (pwvriv ovMv 
Tj-yovvrai TLixLuripav t^s tQiv dWuv dvdpihiruv, vyieiav Se ffil}/.'.aTOS d^LoXoywrepov 
Ti elvaL vo,ul^ova-L irpdyi-ia, cf. Thumb, Die grieckische Sprache im Zeitalier des 
Hellenismus, Strassburg, 1901, p. 253, to whom these facts are due. 

" " Besonderheiten der Koine Syntax," Wiever Studien, 1909, pp. 1 sqq. 

3 Schlageter, Der Wortschatz der ausserhalb Attikas gefundenen aUischen 
Inschrijtcn, Strassburg, 1912. * Thumb, op. cit. pp. 202-253. 


This Ionic element accounts for the so-called " poetical " 
words {e.g. fiea-ovuKTiov, Acts xvi. 25, xx. 7 ; Luke xi. 5 ; 
Mark xiii. 35),^ and for many of the uTra^ elprj/xeva, the number 
of which is gradually being restricted by the continuous stream 
of new documents. Even the Christian meanings of some words 
have a less isolated appearance in this light, and appear to be 
natural to that freedom in using a living language which a fresh 
spiritual message must have. 

With the writers of the New Testament, however, other 
influences also counted. The translation-Greek of the LXX. 
was already in the field as a sort of technical style. In these 
terms the Greek of Acts should be defined. 

The first question in the case of Acts is how deep the influence Literary 
of the literary idiom went, as education, literature, and fashion eiemlntftn 
together were supporting it. This may be answered by a rapid ^'^°*^- 

The Pap}'Ti betray the obsolescence of the Optative in 
New Testament times. The more striking therefore would be 
the appearance of a use that was extinct there and not too 
frequent even in Attic : ^ irplv rj o KaTT]yopov/jiei'o<; Kara irpoaw- 
iTov e%ot . . . TOTTov re a7ro\ojia<i Xd^oi (Acts xxv. 16), but the 
optative here is rather due to indirect discourse and not really 
to an erratic reminiscence of literary style. The Optatives after 
el (xvii. 27, xxvii. 12, 39),^ those which appear in indirect ques- 
tions (v. 24, X. 17), and the Potential optatives (viii. 31, xvii. 18, 
xxvi. 29) are more scarce in the Papyri than in Acts. Peculiar 
to Acts and also literary is the use of ap after a final ottw? and of 
eaeadat after /xeWeiv (iii. 20, xv. 17, xi. 28 [xxiii. 30 HLP], 
xxiv. 15, xxvii. 10). So is the Future participle as a circumstantial 
equivalent to a final clause of purpose * in viii. 27, xxiv. 11, 17, 

^ Rutherford, The New Phrynichus, London, 1881, xxxvi. p. 126 ; cf. 
Acts xxvii. 27. 

^ Goodwin, Syntax of Greek Moods and Tenses, London, 1897, § 644, and 
Robertson, Grammar of the Greek N.T., London, 1914, p. 970. 

* Acts xxiv. 19 is plus royaliste que le roi : Attic either ^xo''<'"' or (dv tl ^xt^""'- 

* Goodwin, op. cit. § 840, Burton, N.T. Moods and Tenses,^ Edinburgh, 
1898, § 442. 



whicli might have been more often applied, e.g., in x. 33, xv. 27, 
etc. If MS. authority were not so adverse, and the usage of 
Acts better fit to inspire confidence on such a point, one would 
like to follow the later MSS. in reading also aarraaoixevoi in Acts 
XXV. 13 to get rid of the vexed question of an aorist participle 
used of action subsequent to that of the principal verb.^ This 
well marked lack of consistency in syntax and style must have 
been a fault in the eyes of contemporary judgment. Some 
well-balanced phrases do not sufficiently atone for it, e.g. Acts 
xxvi. 29 €v^aifir)v av rS ©eco koI ev oXlyo) koI iv /neydXat ov 
fMOvov ae aXXa Kal ^ Trdvra^ . . . 'yeveadat, roiovrov^ 67rolo<i koL 
ejco ... or Acts xv. 24-26, since the more literary expressions 
clash again and again with so-called vulgarisms. Even the 
modern reader cannot but feel the incongruity between such 
Attic forms as ri'^rjixat {v. 2),^ tcraa-L {v. 4), constructions like 
ey/caXeiaOai with Trepi,^ isolated forms as aKpi^eardrr] ^ {v. 5, true 
superlative), words like ovpavoOev, and the rest of chapter xxvi. 
It is vigorous ^ Greek, but it is not homogeneous. A bold 
beginning as : "Odev, ^aacXev AyptTrTraJ ovk iy€v6p,7]v direiO-q's ® 
rf] ovpavLcp oTTTuala ^ {v. 19 ^°) is in strange contrast with the 

^ Radermacher, W. St. xxxi. p. 11 : " Every personality in the world of 
letters stands by itself, and even with the best - educated authors one is 
never safe from surprises." 'Acnraa-afxevoi is either subsequent or coincident 
action, cf. Burton, N.T. Moods and Tenses,^ Edinburgh, 1898, §§ 142-145 ; 
Goodwin, op. cit. § 152; Blass - Debrunner, Grammatik des neutestament- 
lichen Griechisch,* Gottingen, 1913, § 339 ; Moulton, Grammar of N.T. Greek, 
Edinburgh, 1906, vol. i. pp. 132-133. 

^ Pecuhar to the second part of Acts xix. 26, 27, xxi. 13, xxvi. 29, xxvii. 10. 

' Perfect with present sense. 

* Cf. Trpos c. gen., " in the interest of," Acts xxvii. 34. 

* Cf. ws rdx'fTa, Acts xvii. 15. * Vas. 7, 8 are very effective. 

' The omission of Ji is not un- Attic and frequent in the Papyri (^7e,uwj/ Kvpie 
et sim.). 

* A litotes of which Luke is fond (second part of Acts) and which he repeats 
in the same chapter : ov yap . . . iv yuviq. (Acts xxvi. 26). Ovk 6\iyos xii. 
18, xiv. 28, XV. 2, xvii. 4, 12, xix. 23, 24, xxvii. 20; oi^x o tvx^v xix. 11, xxviii. 2; 
other expressions : i. 5, xiv. 17, xvii. 27, xx. 12, xxi. 39, xxvii. 19. The habit 
of returning to a phrase once used is again very obvious here. 

^ A ' Lucan ' word, also 2 Cor. xii. 1. 

^•^ On V. 20 cf. Blass, Acta Apostolorum, editio philologica, Gottingen, 1895, 
p. 268, and Ramsay, St. Paul the Traveller and the Eoman Citizen, London, 
1905, p. 382. 


changed style of ending {v. 22, 23) : ovSev eVro? Xiycov oiv re 
ol 7rpocf)yTac iXaXrjaav fMeWovrcov ^ jLveadai koX Mtyvcrr}?, 
el 7ra67]To<; o ^picrTO<i, el 7rp6i)To<i i^ avacrrdcreco^ veKpoiv (f)0)<i 
/j,eWet KarayyeWeiv rco re Xaco koX Tot<; edveaiv. The same may 
be observed in tlie vocabulary as a whole : dufjuo/xa'^eiv (xii. 20), 
o/juoOv/xaSov (ten times in Acts and Rom. xv. 6), TravoLKt (xvi. 34), 
vav<; (xxvii. 41),^ veavla^ (vii. 58, xx. 9, xxiii. 17, xxiii. 22 peculiar 
to Acts, but also veaviaKot [ii. 17], v. 10 ; Luke vii. 14), local irpo 
(xii. 6, xiv. 13 ^) instead of e/M7rpoa6ev (x. 4, xviii. 17 ; Luke 
V. 19, vii. 27, X. 21, xii. 8 bis, xix. 27, xxi. 36), etc., contrasting 
with a host of less distinguished words and expressions. In 
some cases a striking effect is obtained either consciously or 
not just by the use of such uneven Greek.* The Ephesian 
' town-clerk's ' address opens (xix. 35) with a rhetorical question, 
mounts to pathos combined with literary elegance («al yap 
KLvSuvevofxev^ iyKaXetaOac crrdcreoi^ irepi^ t?}? arjfxepov), followed 
by a sound genitive absolute {firjSevo^; alriov v7rdp^ovTo<i) . 
Then, suddenly, it dies away in the confused construction Trepl 
ov 01) Svvi]cr6fjbe6a dirohovvat Xoyov irepi Trj<; avarpocf)'}]'; TavTi]<;. 
The dangerous word ardcrew^ once being pronounced, the em- 
barrassment of this too rhetorical dignitary in his efforts to 
take it back brings again to the surface the associated ire pi 
— which had been so elegantly placed — the cumbersome style 

^ A laboured attraction. The last words Kal Mwucr^s and the next verse 
sound very much like headlines from a book of Testimonies, added as an after- 
thought either by the author or by somebody else. 

- Blass, ojp. cit. p. 19, thinks it not improbable that a reminiscence of 
Homer should be found here. 

3 But cf. Ramsay, The Church in the Roman Empire before a.d. 170,^ London, 
1914, pp. 51-52. 

* Cf. C. B. WiUiams, The Participle in the Book of Acts, Chicago, 1909, 
pp. 32-33 on Acts xxi. 34. 

* Again a ' Lucan ' word : Lk. viii. 23, Acts xix. 27. Once (different) in 
Paul : 1 Cor. xv. 30. 

« Field, Notes on the Translation of the N.T.,'^ Cambridge, 1899, p. 131 ; 
Blass, op. cit. p. 213 : Radermacher, Lietzmann's Handbuch zum N.T. i. 1, 
p. 99' ; Blass-Debrunner, op. cit. § 178, prefer, against the usage of the author 
and on weak evidence (cf. Hort, The N.T. in the Original Greek, Introduction, 
Appendix, London, lS96,i7i loc.),a, reading which makes the passage less striking. 



reflecting all the wliile his disturbed state of mind. If freely 
invented this touch is a token of consummate skill in reach- 
ing the effect of e/c7rXr;^t9 •■■ by a peculiar ^ but quite adequate 

iiuterate This unevcn character of the Greek of Acts must be largely 

due to the illiterate documents which went into its composition. 
In some places, however, it looks even as if some additional 
information on " correct " usage were acquired during the work. 
In the Gospel, e.g., TrX.rjv is used fifteen times and without excep- 
tion as an adversative conjimction equalling " But," in Acts it 
is never so used, not even in passages of " lower " style. 

The unity of authorship of Acts and Luke is, however, 
generally accepted on the strength of the apparent unity of 
style and syntax.^ Even the " we " sections * correspond in 
phraseology ^ with the Gospel, and, conversely, the first chapters 
of Acts are in many significant details immistakably " Lucan." ^ 

Medical The qucstiou of traces of " medical " idiom in Luke has been 

quite changed by the appearance of Cadbury's Style and Literary 
Method of Luke (Harvard Theological Studies, vi.), 1920, By 
very painstaking methods the whole problem has been sifted out 
again, or rather for the first time, as Hobart,' even supplemented 
with the observations of Harnack ^ and Zahn,^ cannot be com- 

^ Kroll, "Die Originalitat Vergils," Neue Jahrbb. xxi., Leipzig, 1908, p. 521*, 
quotes Pint. De glor. Ath. iii. 347 a tQv laTopiKQv KpanaTos 6 ti)v Si-qy-qaiv 
wcnrep ypa(pr]v Tradecn koX TrpocrciTrois fldioXowoLrjaas, cf. the ' picturesque ' element 
in Acts. 

- Ibid. Longinus, On the Sublime, i. 4, xii. 5. 

3 Moulton, op. cit. p. 216 f., e.g. roO + Inf. in Acts; C. B. Williams, op. 
cit. pp. 69, 72, participial usage ; Hawkins, Horae Synopticae,^ Oxford, 1899, 
p. 142 f., compound verbs. For the absolute genitives, see p. 42, n. 3. 

* Acts xvi. 10-17, XX. (4), 5-16, xxi. 1-18, xxvii. 1-xxviii. 16. 
^ Hawkins, op. cit. pp. 148-154, 179 f. 
8 Harnack, Die Aposielgeschichte, Leipzig, 1908, p. 131 f. ; Lukas der Arzt, 

Leipzig, 1906, pp. 19-85 ; Vogel, Zur Charakteristik des Lukas nach Sprache 
undSiil,- Leipzig, 1899, pp. 16-18. 

' W. K. Hobart, The Medical Language of St. Luke, 1882. 

* Harnack, Lukas der Arzt, Leipzig, 1906 — Luke the Physician, London, 

* Zahn, Einleitung in das N.T., Leipzig, 1906^ = Introduction, New York, 



pared with the conscientious way in which the matter is handled 
here. Very significant is the statement on p. 38 f . : " The 
question may be . . . asked whether the gulf between New 
Testament Greek in general and Attic or x4.tticistic Greek is not 
being exaggerated . . . owing to our fresh knowledge of the 
vernacular Greek through the papyri. If so, the exaggeration 
is probably due to two factors, viz. the overrating of the purely 
imitative and classical elements in the so-called Atticists, and 
the underrating of the literary element in the vocabulary of the 
New Testament writers. I am inclined to revolt slightly also 
from the extreme view of Deissmann and Moulton, who minimise 
the Semitic or Biblical or Jewish element in the New Testament 
and ascribe such phenomena to the vernacular Greek of the 
time. I have already indicated that much of Luke's post- 
classical vocabulary appears to be due to a distinctly Jewish- 
Christian language. This is probably true even of his post- 
classical syntax. And still more allowance must be made if it 
is assumed that in some parts of his work he consciously imitates 
the LXX. or Mark." This view I should like to endorse, as will 
appear further in the discussion of the question of translation- 
Greek and Semiticising " sacred " prose. 

The vocabulary of Luke and Acts is tested by Cadbury on tiic 
pages 10-36 to determine Luke's literary standard by working out stlTdLa 
a parallel for A-E with the vocabulary in Schmid's Atticismus ^ °^ ^°*®- 
for Dio Chrysostom, Lucian, Aristides, Aelian, and the younger 
Philostratus. Words frequent in Attic and later on are omitted 
as not characteristic. Five classes are formed, viz. : 

A. Common Attic, found in several writers. 

B. Only or principally in one prose writer before Aristotle. 

C. Absent in Attic prose, but found in poetry. 

D. Post-classical prose, including Aristotle. 

E. First occurrences in the work under investigation. 

For A, B, C, D, E the results for Luke-Acts and for Acts 
^ Sell mid, Der Aiticismitii in seinoi Hawptvertrelern, 1887-97. 


alone are shown in the followirg table, the last column of which 
gives the percentage of the total of significant words. 




























These results justify the statement quoted above : the post- 
classical element is larger than in Dio where it is 21 per cent, in 
Lucian 20 per cent, in Aristides 9 per cent, in Aelian 23 per 
cent, and in II. PhUostratus 16 per cent, but deduction ought to 
be made for the necessary use of the vocabulary of " sacred 
prose " and for some flaws in Schmid's methods. 

More interesting is the next chapter with its extensive notes 
on the alleged medical language of Luke, occupying pp. 39-50, 
51-64, and followed by an excursus on medical terms in Lucian. 
Especially the excursus provides a counter proof, adequate portions 
of Lucian being substituted for Luke, which method apparently 
justifies the verdict (p. 71) : " There can be no doubt that such 
an investigation could produce a volume quite as large as 
Hobart's, and that the best examples selected from it would be 
found quite as cogent as those of Harnack, MofPatt, and Zahn 
to prove by his ' medical language ' that Lucian was a physician." 

This result is reached by applying a test which has been 
strangely neglected in former investigations. Cadbury has 
formulated it on p. 50 : " Any sound argument . . . must not 
only show a considerable number of terms possibly or probably 
medical,^ but must show that they are more numerous and of 

^ Cadbury also quotes from Galen's treatise " On the Natural Faculties " 
this unfavourable judgment on the use of technical terms by medical men : 
" We, however, for our part, are convinced that the chief merit of language 
is clearness, and we know that nothing detracts so much from this as do 


more frequent occurrence than in other writers of his time and 
degree of culture. . . . The evidence is cumulative, but it must 
also be comparative." Luke should be compared with " non- 
professional men, writing with the same culture as Luke and on 
similar subjects. If not, the argument of Hobart and the rest 
is useless." It may be questioned whether these conditions are 
adequately satisfied by the proof that Luke's medical examples 
are by no means more striking and abundant than those which 
could be collected from Josephus, Philo, Plutarch, or Lucian ; 
but the case is really clinched by the lists on pp. 42-45, showing 
how overwhelming is the mass of LXX. parallels. Lucian may 
be " a fair parallel to Luke " or not, the evidence seems con- 
clusive that Luke's style does not bear such traces of medical 
training and interest as could support an argument from pro- 
fessional style for " the beloved physician," as the author of the 
two books which tradition ascribes to him. He is even guilty 
of some passages which make it very doubtful whether he can 
have been a physician. ^ But as Cadbury observes on p. 51 : 
" One cannot know to-day what an ancient physician would not 
have written." Even greater men among them than Luke have 
written down very strange things. Moreover, we should be on 
our guard not to overrate Luke's degree of culture. The medical 
profession was not then what it is now, slaves largely filling its 
ranks, and the public did not reserve the name of larpo^i for a 
select few. 

But the author's command of the popular kolvi] is perfect. It Luke and 
is used to full advantage in Gamaliel's address (Acts v. 38), '^ ''°""'' 
iav Tj (as their adversaries are supposing : Subjunctive) e^ 
avOptoTTWv . . ., el Se e'/c @eov ecmv (reality) ov Svvf'jcreaOe ktX.^ 
Here the author betrays himself as composer of the speech as 

unfamiliar terms ; accordingly we employ those terms which the bulk of 
people (ol TToXXoi) are accustomed to use " (Brock's translation in the Loeb 
Classical Library, p. 3, quoted by Cadbury, op. cit. p. 64, note 91). 

^ Cf. C. Clemen, in the Theol. Rundschau, x. (1907), p. 102, e.g. the use 
of Xeirides in Acts ix. 18. 

* Radermacher, op. cit. p. 144. 


he unconsciously has stepped into the place of the person speak- 
ing. ^ Attention has also been drawn ^ to the accurate use of 
the tenses in Acts xv. 37. " Barnabas, with easy forgetfulness 
of risk, wishes avixirapaKajSelv Mark — Paul refuses au/jbTrapaXafjL- 
^dveiv, to have with them day hy day one who had shown himself 
unreHable." In Acts xxvi. " The A.V. commits Paul to the 
statement that he had actually forced weak Christians to re- 
nounce their Master. But the sudden abandonment of the 
Aorist used up to this point gives a strong grammatical argument 
for the alternative rjvdjKa^ov : ' I tried to force.' " Another 
tjrpical instance is o-uvr^Waacrev (Acts vii. 26). The distinction 
between the Present and Aorist Imperatives is in full vigour : /xij 
TTOiet, to stop action in progress (Acts x. 15, xviii. 9, xx. 10) ; firj 
woirjo-rj'i, to prevent action (vii. 60, ix. 38, xvi. 28, xxiii. 21). Good 
vernacular is the use of vrrdp'^etv in various constructions, which 
is very frequent in Luke and Acts, but altogether absent from 
Matthew, Mark, and John. Well known from the Papyri is also 
the pronounced preference for the Infinitive passive after verbs 
of commanding, etc. This is a decidedly unclassical use, but 
it may seem doubtful whether Acts v. 34, xvi. 22 arc in conscious 
agreement with the classical rule. So with ov + Participle : the 
popular tendency was to construe all Infinitives and Participles 
with fM7], but for a long time the feeling that ov was yet in all cases 
the right negation for statements of fact seems to have lingered. 
Literary influence in such cases (Acts vii. 5, xxvi. 22, xxviii. 
17-19) is therefore a doubtful assumption. A general estimate 
of the author's style and preferences applied to each special case 
should guide our judgment here. For such an estimate a test 

^ E. Norden, Antike Kuiistprosa," Leipzig and Berlin, 1909, p. 482. 

2 By Moiilton, op. cit. pp. 128 sqq. : " Luke the Greek physician, and as 
such, considering the education of medical men in those times, also a man of 
letters." This is, however, asserting too much. It is quite possible that 
"Luke was a freedman," but "a man of letters," is, after all, a rather high 
distinction. Slaves trained in literature and philosophj' were no exception, 
but of course neither a current article. The sort of Greek Luke was trained 
in I should value — with Cadburj^ — rather high, but of his attainment I am 
inclined to think less favourably-. At most it was rather unequal. 


case is presented by Moulton's observation ^ on the Historic 
Present : " Josephus would use the tense as an imitator of the 
classics,^ Mark as a man of the people . . . while Luke would 
have Greek education enough to know that it was not common 
in cultured speech of his time, but not enough to recall the encoiirage- 
ment of classical writers." 

After the blurring of old usages, fresh distinctions arose : 
oaTL<i, e.g., is used as a somewhat emphasised relative or in the 
sense which in English would be expressed by a demonstrative 
and a conjunction,^ just as is also the Article with places that 
occur in the narrative signalled as " stations in the course of a 
journey * (Acts xvii. 1, xx. 13, xxi. 1-3, xxiii. 32), but xx. 14 sq. 
anarthrous," cf. Blass-Debrunner, cp. cit. § 261 suh. 2. Peculiar 
is also o Oil' ^ in the sense of 6 6vofi.a^6jji6vo<; in v. 17, xiii. 1 [xiv. 
13 D], and also in xxviii. 17.^ 

^ Moulton, op. cit. pp. 120-121, quoting Hawkins, op. cit. pp. 113-119. The 
Historic Presents in Acts are thirteen in number, nine of them (Hawkins), eight 
(Mouiton) or " possibly eleven " (Robertson, Grammar, p. 867) occurring in Luke. 

2 But Josephus had his " ghosts " (C. Apion. i. 9), who may have earned 
thefee laurels for him. 

* Robertson, Grammar, p. 731, quotes the only instance of o rt in indirect 
question, Acts ix. 6 \a\7]9riaeTal (xol 6 tl ae del woidv rightly, as a mark of literary 
influence, the various reading n being significant. "Oo-a or Travra baa, cf. ix. 16, 
would have done quite well. 

* The general rule is that a place named as the end of a journey or of a 
distinct part of it is introduced without the Article (but xxviii. 14 ttjj' 'Pw.u'Cj v. 16 
regular). Movings from a place already mentioned — Jerusalem always excepted 
as constantly anarthrous, except v, 28, cf. Robertson, Grammar, p. 760 — 
require the Article (xiii. 13-14, xviii. 1-21, 22, but faulty xxi. 7 cnrb Tvpov). 
Places emphasised as stations — the text oftenest shows why — have the Article. 
xxi. 1 Cos and Rhodes (town distinct from the island ?) ; x. 8 turning-point 
from which they should return with Peter (in v. 5 merely destination ?), xiv. 
21 Derbe, end of the journey ; Lystra, etc., stations on the journey home, xvu. 
1, XX. 6, 13-17, xxiii. 32-33. In xxi. 3 e/s Tupov, the vessel was unloaded, 
8 €is Kaicraplav, end of the voyage, xxviii. 12. In v. 14 ets t^v 'Vwixr]i' = 
arrival at the boundary of the ager Eomanus, but v. 16 eis 'Puifirjv end of the 
travel? end of the crossing, v. 13 of the coasting along Sicily, 13 [IlortJXocs] 
end of the voyage. A mistake seems to lurk perhaps in xxvii. 3, eis Ziddfa : 
this is emphasised as a station by Paul's getting "leave to go unto liis friends 
and refresh himself." 

^ Ramsay, Church, p. 52. 

* Cf. p. 57 for the discussion of Torrey's suggestion to explain this as 
translation-Greek for di ^ilh. 


Increased acquaintance with the living vernacular has 
justified much that seemed unwarranted. A slight case is 
the omission of 6vT€<i in dairot StareXelre ^ (Acts xxvii. 33). 
The very free use of the partitive genitive would recall the 
Semitic constructions with min. The earhest KOivt], however, 
— which has left its traces on the pages of Xenophon — 
knew this construction, and the Papyri have preserved it in a 
large number of examples. Even more literary writers than Luke 
have sinned against the genitive absolute, the classical rule ^ 

^ New Phrynichus, ccxliv. p. 342 f. 
^ The genitive absolute in Acts : 























Dubious . 











Faulty . 






































2 ■ 






Dubious . 











Faulty . 











Total . 





























(iu total) 


Dubious . 











Faulty . 











Total . T 2 4 7 9 3 11 7 ,, fto 

The genitive absolute in the ' We ' Sections (and in the remaining parts of 

chaps, xvi., xx., etc.) : 

Chapters xvi. 10-17. Rest. xx. 5-18. Rest. xxi. 1-18. Rest, xxvii. l-xx:\'iii. 10. Rest. 










Dubious . 









Faulty . 









The greater frequency after chapter xvii. is what we should expect. The figures 
are apparently in favour of the unity of authorship and the identity of the 
author of the ' we ' sections and the rest of the narrative. Acts xxi. 10, 31, 
XXV. 17 : gen. abs. without noun or pronoun in agreement, frequent in the 
Papyri, cf. Moulton, op. cit. p. 74. C. B. Wilhams, op. cit. pp. 31-32, seems to 
apply a different standard, discussing only as " loose constructions " Acts vii. 
21, xxi. 17, 34, xxii. 17, xxv. 21. " There are a few other loose constructions 
of the genitive absolute in the book. But these few exceptions only emphasise 
the fact that the author of the book closely followed the rule to make the 
genitive absolute refer to a substantive not connected with the rest of the 


being no longer felt. The same applies to the ace. c. inf. ; Luke 
has combined in one verse (Acts xxii. 17) a misuse of both which 
appears to be as hard a case as any in the Egyptian documents. 
The hinged construction of on and ace. c. inf. in chap, xxvii. 10 
is, notwithstanding isolated classical instances, a symptom of 
degeneration by overgrowth of the constructions with the In- 
finitive. The indecHnable ttX?)/)?;? ^ has early precedent and, in 
Acts, good MS. evidence. Taken from life and thoroughly 
vernacular is the dative in fXTjSev irpd^r)^ aeavrcp kukov (Acts 
xvi. 28).2 

Latinisms might be expected in popular Greek of the first Latinisms. 
century, and may serve as an introduction to the less clear case 
of Semitisms. The influence of the Latin construction of iuhere 
c. inf. pass, may be seen in the deviations from classical usage in 
favour of infinitive-passive with verbs of commanding (Acts xxiii. 
10 being an exception), but the tendency is easily explained by 
the clearer sense which this construction gave. Temporal irpo 
(Acts V. 36, xxi. 38) would be an almost self-evident Latinism but 
for Herodotus, Hippocrates, and epigraphical facts prior to any 
Latin influence. Very striking is genua ponere and rtdepaL ra 
jopara (Acts vii. 60, ix. 40, xx. 36, xxi. 5 ; Luke xxii. 41 ; Mark . 
XV. 19), but unless a reason can be suggested for the imitation of 
just this expression, spontaneous parallelism may stand as an 
alternative. In forensic ^ surroundings Latinisms are of course 
natural : \a^ovre^ rh LKavov * (Acts xvii. 9), o-^^eade uvtol (Acts 
xviii. 15), or ayopaloi dyovrat (Acts xix. 38). A ' vulgar ' Latinism 
is perhaps ov fiera 7roWa<i ravra^; rj/xepa^; (Acts i. 5), Dut it 
contains the only instance of the "Lucan" litotes in these first 

sentence." It is difficult to judge how ' connected ' should be interpreted, 
but at least twelve more instances are to be added at all events to those 
mentioned by the author. 

^ Moulton, op. cit. p. 50. 

- Attic double ace, cf. Radermacher, op. cit. p. 99. 

3 " Negative " Latinisms are possibly Bieria (Acts xxiv. 27, xxviii. 30) and 
rpLeria (xx. 31), corresponding to biennium and triennium. 

* A favourite word with Luke : Matt. 3, Mark 3, Luke 10, Acts 19, 
Paul 6 occurrences. 


chapters,^ and this makes inadvertency a less probable explana- 
tion. It has also been claimed as an Aramaism by Torrey,^ and 
so it will lead us up to the main question of the Greek of Acts, 
viz. the so-called Semitisms. 

Semitisms. Semitism and Semiticising style are expressions which are 
much in need of sharp definition and closer scrutiny. Both 
purposes and some more besides will be served by a discussion 
of the valuable contribution which Torrey has made to this 

Torrey's This questiou of Semitisms in Acts has obtained a new 

theory. i-i /• x • 

aspect by Torrey's Composition and Date of Acts. It is now 
bound up with the larger questions of unity of authorship and 
sources by the alleged demonstration of an Aramaic document 
extending from i. 16-xv. 35, and translated by Luke. The 
remaining chapters he holds to have been written by the same 
writer but added as an afterthought. In order to make good 
this contention the difference in style between the translated 
documents and the rest of the book is emphasised. " It is not 
enough to speak of frequent Semitisms ; the truth is that the 
language of all these fifteen chapters is translation-Greek through 
and through, generally preserving even the order of the words. 
In the remainder of the book, chapters xvi.-xxviii., the case is 
altogether different. Here there is no evidence of an underlying 

^ Somewhat similar is iv. 20 ov dwafxeda . . . fiij XaXelv. But the first real 
litotes is ovK oXlyos xii. 18, cf. xiv. 28, xv. 2, xvii. 4, 12, xix. 23, 24, xxvii. 20. 
The first three instances are significant against the " 1 Acts " theory as com- 
pared with the modification proposed further down in this article. Other 
cases are ouk afj-dprvpov, xiv. 17 (again important from this point of view) ; 
ov /laKpav, xvii. 27 ; ov rots Ti'xotVas, xix. 11, cf. xxviii. 2; ov fxerpiuis, xx. 12 ; 
OVK dffT^fjLov TToXeojs, xxi. 39 ; ovk . . . aweidris, xxvi. 19 ; ov . . . ev ymvia, 
xxvi. 26. 

^ Torrey, Composition and Date of Acts (Harvard Theological Studies, i.), 
Cambridge, Mass., 1916, pp. 6, 24 claims this as a case of Jewish Aramaic on 
the strength of the redundant demonstrative ravras, cf. Dalman, Grainm. des 
judisch-paldstinischen Aramaisch, Leipzig,^ 1894,^ 1905, pp. 113 ff. The litotes, 
however, is not the less Greek and Latin for this reason. That such a Lucanism 
should stand solitary in the beginning of the translation of an Aramaic source 
is not unnatural. The author or translator may have abandoned or post- 
poned the idea of more thoroughly " Lucanising " the style of this document. 


Semitic language. The few apparent Semitisms (/cat ISov: eyevero 
with infin. : rore used in continuing a narrative : ivwiriov with 
genitive : edero iv rS TrvevfyLarc TropevecrOat : e'/c /xeaov [iv /u,ecr&>] 
avTMv) are chargeable to the koiv^ ; though their presence may 
be due in part to the influence of the translation-Greek which 
Luke had so extensively read and written. In either case they 
are negligible " (pp. 7, 8). 

This statement does not seem to be wholly accurate. To the 
" few apparent Semitisms " — taking the word in the less precise 
sense in which it was used here — an imposing array must be 
added. Between chapter xviii. and xxii. they are even thickly 
enough strewn to impart a distinct colour to the whole. Chapter 
xix. is especially characteristic from this point of view, as a 
rapid survey will show : (1) iyevero Se ev tm rov 'AttoXXw dvai 
iv KoplvOo) (cf. op. cit. pp. 6 and 7, Acts iv. 30, viii. 6, ix. 3 ; but 
also xix. 1, xxii. 6, 17, xxviii. 8, 17) ... ; (5) i/SairTLadrjaav ei9 
TO 6vo/xa (cf. op. cit. p. 15, Acts iii. 16) . . . ; (8) 8ia\.ej6/ii€vo<i 
Kal irdOoiv (cf. op. cit. p. 36, Acts xi. 6 ; but also ikdXei koI 
iBlSaaKev, xviii. 25 ; and other instances in chapter xix. 2, 16, 
18, 19) ... ; (9) 0)9 Be (cf. op. cit. p. 6 nDi : Kal &>?, Acts i. 10, but 
also fo)9 Si V. 24, vii. 23, viii. 36, ix. 23, x. 7, 17, 25, xiii. 25, 29, 
xiv. 5 ; and in " 2 Acts " 18 times) . . . iaKXrjpvvovTo Kal i^TrelOovv 
(see above, v. 8) KaKo\oyovvT6<; tt]v oBov {op. cit. p. 34 ; Acts 
ix. 2 ; but also xvi. 17, xviii. 25, 26, xix. 9, 23, xxii. 4, xxiv. 22) 
evMTTiov (pp. 6, 7 ; Acts vi. 5 ; cf. xix. 19, xxvii. 35) rov 7r\j]6ov<; 
. . . ; (11) 8ui'afx,ei<i ... 6eo<; iirolei 8ta tcov •^etpwv {op. cit. 
p. 6 ; Acts ii. 23 ; but also xvii. 25, xix. 11, 26, xxi. 11, xxiv. 7, 
xxviii. 17) HauXou . . . ; {15) diroKpiOev Be to Trvev/jLU . . . elirev 
avTol<i {op. cit. p. 7 ; Acts xv. 3, v. 8, iii. 12. The very 
common Aramaic ion!"i hdi; . . . cf. Dan. iv. 27. The idiom is 
also Hebrew) . . .; (16) /cara/cypteuo-a? . . . tayyarev Kar avro)v 
(see above) . . . eK(^vyeh> e'/c tov oikov eKetvou . . . ; (17) tovto 
Be iyevero yvcoaTov {op. cit. p. 30 ; Acts iv. 16, i?"'"!"', but also 
i. 19, ix. 42, xix. 17, xxviii. 22, ii. 14, iv. 16, xxviii. 28) Trdcrtv . . . 
Tol^ KaTOLKOvaiv TTjv "Fj(f)eaov . . . iireTrecrev cf). ivrl irdvra'i . . . : 


(18) ■)]p^ovTO e^ofMoXoyov/jLevot koI avayyeWovref (see above, 
V. 8) . . . ; (19) ivcoTTtov iravTcov (see above, v. 9) . . . koI avve- 
\lr7](f)taav . . . Kol evpov (Semitic 3rd plural for passive) . . .; 
(21) ft)? he (see above, ~rD")) iirX'qpoiiBr] ravra {op. cit. pp. 28, 
37 ; Acts ii. 1, but also xxiv. 27) edero . . . iv tu> TrveiifMari 
(p. 6, Acts V. 4, see above, p. 8 quoted) iropeveo-Qai . . . ; 
(23) irepl t?}<? ohov (see further down) . . . ; (26) ol Sea ^etpwy 
yevojxevob (see above, v. 11) . . . ; (28) e/cpa^ov XeyovTe<; (see 
above v. 8) . . . ; (34) (f)a)vr} iyevero fxia e'/c TrdvTwv . . . 
Kpd^ovTe<i (reduced to Aramaic this would sound much better 
and the loose sequence would cause no trouble). 

A perusal of these various and unequal cases of Semiticising 
Greek is perhaps sufficient to substantiate some doubts. Of 
course the style of the first half of Acts is decidedly more 
Semitic than that of the second. But it has also often been 
observed that within the limits of each of these halves of Acts 
the colouring itself is unequal. The usual explanation of the 
first fact was found in Luke's sense of local colour. The second 
fact, viz. the difference of nuance within each half of the book, 
is more difficult to explain consistently. Torrey has recourse 
to minimising these shades in both halves, making 1 Acts 
" translation- Greek through and through " and 2 Acts almost 
pure Koivr}. Neither the one nor the other seems warranted by 
the facts. That this is so follows equally from some considera- 
tions on the methods which ought to be applied and is confirmed 
by the results obtained. 
The test of The test of reversion means obviously that a given Greek 
phrase which sounds somewhat strange, goes easily into Aramaic. 
Now much Koivr], not even sounding strange even in the order 
of the words, has this quality. But strange-sounding Greek may 
be due not only to translation, but also to the influence of trans- 
lation-Greek on original composition. In Luke's case it is evident 
that strict account must be kept of this influence. Moreover, 
this " Semiticising " style in writing original Greek prose was not 
invented by him and applied only for " local colour,'" but it was 



the style of " sacred prose.'' Not only some books of the LXX. 
but also the remains of the voluminous and widely read Apo- 
calyptic writings confirm this. Early Christian literature in 
general is written in kolvt] tinged with the influence of Semiticis- 
ing Greek of both these tjrpes.^ To distinguish between these 
types, viz. " sacred prose," if Semiticising strongly enough, and 
translation - Greek on the other hand is a matter of delicate 
handling. Mere reversion is obviously not always a sufficient 
test. To deal quite safely some rules must be laid down, among 
which these might be followed : — 

I. Current Septuagintisms are to be eliminated. 
II. Cases which can be closely paralleled from the Papyri 
should be ruled out. 

III. The case for translation-Greek presupposing an under- 

lying document written either in Aramaic or in Hebrew, 
Semitisms which are impossible in one of these lan- 
guages occurring side by side with such as are only 
ascribable to the other are conclusive evidence for 
" sacred prose " and against translation-Greek, 

IV. The frequency and clearness of the cases should be 

tabulated, and the factor of clearness have its test- 
value numerically expressed. In this way " stretches " 
of weak cases must appear which will enable us to 
assign a higher test- value to doubtful numbers which 
appear between strong cases. 
V. In the case of " 1 Acts " locutions occurring also in " 2 
Acts " should count as evidence for translation-Greek 
only if they occur in a " stretch " of strong cases. 

There is a certain amount of personal equation in this. It 
is, however, safer to handle the matter in small doses than other- 
wise. If one wishes to decide between translation-Greek and 
Semiticising prose without such measures, the results cannot 
inspire lasting confidence. The criticisms in Dalman's Worte 

^ Cf. the quotation from Cadbury, above, p. 37. 


Jesu are very instructive on the value of many alluring sugges- 
tions even by very competent Semitic and Greek scholars. 

After all the question is mainly one of Greek. We have on 
the one hand the Papyri, etc., and on the other Jewish and Early 
Christian Greek. The first must answer the question : Is this 
usage legitimate or Semitic ? The other must solve the diffi- 
culty whether a given locution is still possible in an original 
Semiticising composition or can only be explained as a result 
of translation. We may refine our methods as much as possible, 
but in the last instance the cases come on the scales of this 
Variations Taking the cases in " 1 Acts " which are discussed, about 85, 

as a workable average, the fact of weak and strong " stretches " 
at once appears. This was to be expected as Guillemard's 
Hebraisms in the New Testament,'^ though utterly antiquated, yet 
possesses some test-value and gives about the same results, 
chapters, vi., xii., xiii., xiv. being weak. 

Giving the results for no more than a provisory estimate, it 
appears that the case for i.-v. 16 and ix. 31-xi. 18 is strong, for 
vii. doubtful, owing to the difficulty of estimating the value of 
separate cases among the host of quotations of which the apology 
of Stephen is made up, while chapter xv. rests on one case, the 
other instances being doubtful. 

The curious fact is that if, therefore, an Aramaic source or 
sources be assumed for these " stretches," they coincide with the 
rough average result of current source criticism. For that 
reason verses v. 16 and xi. 18 are put in, though by philological 
means such a sharp dividing line is not obtainable, not even 
between " 1 Acts " and the other chapters. As a piece of weak 
evidence the cases in chapter xv. might be analysed. 
Acts XV. XV. 3 '7rpo'7refX(f>6evT€<i oltto is quoted by Torrey^ as a case of 

the Aramaic ]d to denote the agent with a passive verb, 

^ Guillemard, Hebraisms, etc., Cambridge, 1879. 

^ Op. cit. pp. 7 and 28. The various reading v-rrd often occurs, d-jro being 
yulgar. 'Airo has become the rule in modem Greek. 


but cases of this usage from the Papyri and later Greek are 
available. Moreover, the same construction occurs in xx. 9. 

XV. 4 irapehey^drjaav utto Ti}<i eKKkriata^ should answer to 
i^Til^ |Q, but airehe^avro rj/xd^ ol dSeXcf^oi, xxi. 17, goes as well 
into Aramaic, and the passive construction may be paralleled. 

XV. 4 ocra 6 Oeo<{ iTTOLrjaev fier avrwv is paralleled in xiv. 27, 
but cf. Grinfield, Nov. Test. Gr. ed. Hellenistica, I. ad loc. for 
parallels from LXX. 

XV. 7 d(f) rjjjLepSiv dp'^alcov iv vfilv e^eke^aro o 6eo<; 8ta tou 
aroixaro'^ fxov uKovaai, pp. 7, 21, 22, is a strong case for 3 -irijl 
unless the omission of iv ufMiv by Peshitto and Sahidic should 
afterwards appear to be right, w^hich is not very probable. The 
case of dp-)(a'Lwv is not much bettered by reversion ; Peter might 
think himself predestined of old just as well as the u^ei? or 7^^ei<? 
he is addressing. 

XV. 13 direKpiOri of James' beginning to speak, with parallels 
in iii. 12 and v. 8, corresponding to Aramaic and Hebrew 
nDU, may be paralleled from xix. 15 (see above) and there are 
a host of similar cases in the LXX, and some elsewhere. 

XV. 18 ^voiard dir' alcavo^ is probably direct quotation. 

XV. 23 ol irpea^vrepoL d8e\(f)o[, pp. 7, 39, is a case of exegesis. 
The difficulties may be wholly imaginary and " the elder brethren " 
the final solution. An adjective may quite well find its place 
before aSeX^o?, cases being extant in the Papyri. 

XV. 28 7r\t]v rovTcov rcov i'7rdvayK€<i may be set right in the 
way suggested by Torrey on p. 39, but also without need of any 
Aramaic whatever ; cf. Moulton and Milligan, Vocabulary, Part 
iii., sub voce, and Cadbury, op. cit. p. 16, classing it as common 

XV. 33 direXvO-qaav dTTo, see note on xv. 3. 

On XV. 16-18, pp. 38, 39, nothing can be founded. Here the 
question of Books of Testimonies comes in. It cannot be dis- 
carded, since headlines are quoted in xxvi. 23 : et Tra^T/ro? 6 
XpicTTO? and el irploTos' i^ dvaardaeoxi veKpoiv ^w? /neWei 
KarayjeWecv tu> re Xaco Kai rol^ eOveaiv. The interruption of 



Festus shows that Paul had been pouring out a stream of such 
" proof texts " (xxvi. 24 ra iroWa . . . ypdfi/jiaTa) referring to 
Gospel history (xxvi. 26 ov 'yap icrrtv ev 'yoivia Treirpay/jbevov 
TovTo) as their fulfilment. 

Strong and Stronger are the arguments for i. 6-v. 16 and ix. 31-xi. 18. 

examples of In the first stretch, discarding all weaker ones, the decisive 

i. 15, ii. 1, 44, 47 eVt rh avTo, but cf. Cadbury, A.J.Th., July 1920. 
i. 22 ap^dp.ivo'i airo. 
ii. 7 oii^t iSoi'. 

iii. 16 ecrTe/3€ojcre to ovojia for vyS] KaTe(rTi]crev (cf. below, pp. 141 f.). 
iv. 12 TO SeSojjJvov €v dvOpwiroi's. 

iv. 25 6 Tov Trarpbs yjuwi' Sia Trvei'yuaTos dylov crro/xaTos AavetS TratSos 
orov etTTCOl/. 

Perhaps avvaki^oixevo^, i. 4, should be added (p. 23). 

In the second stretch the case seems to rest upon five instances : 

ix. 31 otKoSojxovjxevt] Kai Tvopevofx^vrj tc5 c^. t. k. 

ix. 32 Sta TTai'TOJV. 

X. 15 ovScTTOTe . . . TTai' Kotvdv. 

X. 30 aTTo Teraprv^s . . . wpas (all Oil p. 34) and dp^ap^evos (on pp. 6, 

23, 25, 36). 

Many weaker examples are interspersed and several may be 
paralleled from " 2 Acts " : 

i. 5 ov perd TroAAas ravras rjp.epas may be paralleled from Aramaic, 

but also from Latin (see above, pp. 43 f.). 
i. 10 Kul ws, see above, and cf. xix. 9 w? 8e. 
i. 10 Kttt tSoi', cf. xvi. 1, XX. 22, 25, xxvii. 24. 
ii. 1 iv Tw (Tvp.TrXy]povcrdai ttjv rjp,epav ttjs ■!r€VTr]KO(TTr]<;, cf. xix. 21 

(^i7rX.rjpwdi] ravra), xxiv. 27 (Stertas Se TrX-i]pwd€La-)]'i). 
ii. 22 aTroSeSeiy fxevov diro. 
iv. 36 iTrLK\i]dels (XTTo, see above xv. 3 TvpoTrepifjdtvTes d-n-o and xv. 33 

a7reAu^7^cra!' utto. 
ii. 23 Sto. x«'po« (x^'P''^'')) <^f- ^'^"ii- ^'^j ^i^- Hj -^^ (see above) ; xxi. 11, 

xxiv. 7, xxviii. 17. 
ii. 24 d)8ivei Toi' davdrov is to be read with a capital letter — Oavdrov, 

a personification of death, cf. Od. Sal. xlii. 15, Hos. xiii. 14, 

1 Cor. XV. 55. 


ii. 33 e^exeev tovto o . . . (iXk—^re. kuI aKOvere, Trvev/zaros ayiov being 

the reference immediately preceding in the same sentence, cf. 

also ii. 17, 18, x. 45 and Grinfield ad he. 
iii. 2 €K KotAtas fj.tjTpu<; avTov, cf. LXX., 

iii. 12 d-eKpLvaro and v. 8 aTreKpiOi], see above xix. 15, xv. 13. 
iii. 16 TO ovopa, see above xix. 5 and the use of oFo/iara (i. 15) = persons 

and parallels in Papyri and Modern Greek, 
iii. 20 Kaipol avai/'i'^ews airo irpoawirov tov Kvpiov sounds much like a 

quotation from some apocalyptic writing, 
iii. 24 sounds very much like translation-Greek, though in other 

surroundings the case would not be stringent. For ocrot 

eAaA7/crai' koX Kari'iyy eiXav see above xix. 8, 9, 16, 18, 19. 
iv. 16 yi'djcrrbv a-y/xelov, see above xix. 17 for yi/wcrTos, though cn-jpilov 

is absent, 
iv. 30 er Tw T-i]v x^lpa eKreLvew ere for Ikt. t. \., cf. LXX. For similar 

constz'uctions cf. xix. 1, xxii. 6, 17, xxviii. 8, 17. 
V. 4 TL oTt eOov iv rfj KapSta crov, cf. xix. 21 iv rw irvevpaTt and cf. LXX. 

Hagg. ii. 18, Sirac. i. 28. 

Beside? those adduced above from chapter xix., instances of Scmitisma 
about the same doubtful value -^ might be quoted from " 2 Acts." 
The only difference is found in the absence of stringent cases for 
translation-Greek and the only occasional presence of patches 
of Semitic colour. They are, of course as different in value as 
those quoted above from Torrey, the lules laid down above again 
not being applied. 

XV. 39 eyevcTo oe Tropo^vcrpos (rare in class., often in LXX. ; the sub- 
stantive in Dent. xxix. 28, Jer. xxxii. 37 — the construction iy. 
IT. instead of Tra-pio^vvdya-av [eV uAAv/Aov?] absent in LXX.). 

XV. 40 ■7rapaoodel<i tyJ y^apiTL tov Kvpiov vtto (D aTro) twv aSeXcfyiov. 

xvi. 1 Kal ISov. 

xvi. 2 O'j epaprvpiiTo, cf. xxii. 12. 

xvi. 3 Kul \af3o)v 7repuTep.ev. 

xvi. 4, 10 a)"J Se. 

xvi. 16, 17 iyeveTo 8e . . . TraiSLO-Kyjv . . . vTravTi](raL ijpty, vyVfj . . . 
avTi] KaTaKoXovdovaa . . . eKpa^iv Aeyoucra . . . oSov <TMTy]pias. 

xvi. 19 i^rjXdev 7) eATTi's. 

^ By chance Galatia is in Aramaic Gallia and not Galatiqi as, e.g., Oerariqi 
(a district in Philistia). This prevents our solving the riddle (Acts xvi. 6, 
xviii. 23) TT)v Ya\aTiKi]v x^ipai/ /cat <^pvyiav by retroversion, which otherwise 
would have furnished a splendid instance of fallacious proof ! 


xvi. 36 aTT'/yyyetAej' . . . tous Xoyovs tovtov^ . . . oti airka-TaXKav 

. . . i^eXOovre'S Tropeijeade kv ilpyjuy (cf. XV. 33). 
xvi. 40 f^eA^oi'Tes Se aTro t. <f). elcrrjXdoi' Trpbs tijv AvSiai' Kat tSoi'Tes 

TTapeKaXeaav tov? aSeXcfiOVS Kat e^rjXdav. 
xvii. 7 Kttt oPtoi 7ravT£s direvavTi [usual meaning is, however, local 

over against] rwv Soy/xarwv Kaccrapos irpda-crova-c. 
xvii. 13 ojs Se eyvcotrav . . . utl . . . Kari^yyeXi] l'ttu tou IlarAoLi. 
xvii. 14 evOews Se. rore . . . ews eiri (cf. ews ei's in LXX.). 
xvii. 16 7rapw^vv€T0 to Trveuyua auTou tv avrw. 
xvii. 17 Kara irdirav rjixepav. 
xvii. 19 8vvdp.e6a yi'wvat, cf. Syriac meshkehinan Imeda" : why not 

l^ecTTtv or the like 1 
xvii. 20 eiVt^epeis et's ras a/<ods rjpMV, cf. xi. 22 yKOvcrOi) els to. aira, 

sounding much like a negative Semitism. 
xvii. 25 i'tto )(^eipwv dvdpoiTrivoyv. 

xvii. 26 eTrotTycrev e^ evos Trav Wvos dvOpunvwv . . . KaTOiKias avTwv. 
xvii. 31 ev avSpt w oipicrev, negative Semitism for aina. 
xvii. 33 e^rjXOev eK p,ecrov avToiv. 
xviii. 2, 3 Sta to 8taTeTa;;^evai . . . wpoo-rjXOev avTols, Kal Sid to 

ofxorexvov eivai epievev . . . Kal i^pyd^ovTO, ^(rav yap . . . 
xviii. 4 KaTcl irdv (rd(3[iaTov. 
xviii. 5 (OS ok. 

xviii. 6 TO aTp.a vpMV iirl tijv Kec^o.Ai/i' vptov. 
xviii. 10 AaAec Koi pi] (T HiiTn^crrjS . . . ovSels err td-rja-eTai crot tou 

crai ere Slotl Aaos e(TTt p.oi ttoXvs ev rfj TrdAei ravrij. 
xviii. 23 TTOtv/o-as ^povov . . . i^rjXOev Stepyo/xeros, cf. xviii. 21 tj]v 

€opT>p . . . TroL'i](TaL €LS 'lepocToXvpa. 
xviii. 25 ovTos rjv KaTi]\'qpkvo<i ttji' oSoj/ tou Kvpiov . . . ^'ewv toj 

TTvevpan kXdXei Kat eSioacTKev. 
xviii. 26 oStos tc yjp^aro irappi^a-Ld^eaOai. 
xviii. 27 diroSe^acrdaL avrov. 

In chapters xx.-xxviii. a few examples will suffice ; for in- 
stance XX. 9 KaTeve-)(6el'i airo too vttvov, and xx. 22, 25 Kal viiv 
IBov. In XX. 28 Sea rod aipbaTo<i tov ISlov would by means of 
retroversion yield badma dileh : by his (own) blood, implying that 
the ruha dqudsha had assumed flesh and blood in the person of 
Jesus. This would be quite interesting and remind one of 
Hermas and 2 Cor. iii. 17 o Be Kvpio<i to Trvevfxd eanv. Yet 
it would be mere quicksand to go on. The case is the more 
alluring by its Semiticising surroundings : xx. 29 Xvkol /SapeU 


. . . eiaekevcrovrai eU vfjia<;', xx. SO i^ vfi(3v avTcSv avaaTy](TovTai 
dv8p€<; \aXovvT€^ ZtecrTpaiJijxeva rod airocnrav tov<; /jiadrjra'i oiriaoi 
eavTcou. Even if the position of this passage did not exclude 
the thought of translation-Greek, the fact that ^apet? would 
represent a Hebrew word, the Aramaic using another root, not 
meaning " heavy," would be decisive against the theory. Trans- 
lation-Greek cannot at the same time reflect Hebrew and Aramaic 
where these languages differ, this being just the distinguishing 
characteristic of Semiticising Greek or " sacred prose " (cf. the 
third rule above). In xxi. 5 ore Se iyevero i^aprcaat rj/jbd'i Ta<i 
}]fX6pa^ could be an ashamed Semitism. The root ^?~5Q is re- 
presented by a more fashionable word than avfJiTrXt^povaOai. 
The surroundings are again favourable : xxi. 1 &>? he iyevero 
ava-^Orjvai r)fj.a.<; arrocnraaOevra^; air avrwv and in verse 
5 the next words e^eXOovre'i eiropevoixeda, where only the 
participles blur the Semitic colouring. Further on we find 
xxi. 11, 12, 13 TrapaSoiaovatv el<; '^eipa<; eOvwv. co? Se . . . 
irapeKaXovfiev . . . rov fjurj dva^aiveiv avrbv et? lepovaa\i]/Ji. 
rare drreKpldrj o Ilav\o(i, and in xxi. 17 drreSe^avro rjfid^; 
01 d8e\(f)0i. 

Without proceeding any further it is evident that the notion what are 
" Semitism " must be sharply defined in order to avoid constant 
confusion between translation-Greek and " sacred prose " and 
several other misunderstandings. 

It is but natural to call every deviation from legitimate kolvi] 
in the direction of Semitic idiom a Semitism. Even in cases 
where no idiom occurs which cannot be justified thus, Greek 
may be said to be " Semiticising " when the crowding together 
of otherwise legitimate locutions stamps the passage as tinged 
with alien influence. In such a case one decided Aramaism may 
turn the scales for translation from Aramaic. With Hebraisms 
however distinct, the LXX. will often make the case remain 

To see clearly into this matter we should distinguish the 
cases which may occur. A man may either have (a) perfect or 


(6) imperfect knowledge of Greek. We may call (a) a " Greek " 
and (6) for convenience a " Semite." 

Now, either of these two may attempt four things : on the 
one hand (1) translation from a Semitic dialect into idiomatic or 
(2) into Semiticising Greek, or, on the other hand, (3) original 
composition in idiomatic Greek, or (4) in Semiticising Greek. 

A "Greek" trying (3) will produce no "Semitisms," a "Semite" 
cannot fail to do so. The same holds good of (1), but only 
approximately, the underlying Semitic may still shine through 
by means of what Psichari calls ^ " negative Semitisms," that is, 
the use of locutions from a higher style, such as Attic, which 
would not naturally come in, but are preferred because they 
square with a peculiarity of the translated document.^ We can, 
therefore, distinguish between "positive" and "negative'' Semit- 
isms and, what is more important perhaps, between "primary" 
and " secondary " ones. 
Primary Primary Semitisms are those which a " Semite " commits in 

(1) or (3). He is, however, always in danger of betraying him- 
self by this cause even in cases (2) and (4), since the one source 
of these primary or real Semitisms is his imperfect knowledge of 
natural Greek. The deviations, however, which a man with 
perfect knowledge in this regard — for these ends, therefore, a 
" Greek "—may let pass in cases (1), (2), or (4) have a secondary 
cause, secondary because they are due to an extraneous factor : 
^he exigencies of the reader whom he is addressing, or of the 
documents he is translating. We have still left out of account 
the more or less perfect knowledge which this " Greek " author 
may have of the Semitic idiom in which his source was written. 
Yet with these preliminaries the question of Semitisms in Acts 
is perhaps clearly enough put. 

Primary Semitisms, either positive or negative, seem to be 

^ "Essai sur le grec de la Septante," par Jean Psichari {"^vxa-pv^). Revue 
des ehides juives, 1908, Avril. 

^ E.g. OL^- + participle as an equivalent of Hebrew lo, or iv dvopLan regularly 
for 6* shem, while the more popular els ovofia is reserved for the few occurrences 
of I' shem. 


wholly absent. Secondary Semitisms are especially frequent in 
the first fifteen chapters, but are still much in view in the second 
half of the book. These secondary Semitisms warrant the hypo- 
thesis of translation-Greek for i. 16-v. 16, and so also for ix. 31- 
xi. 18. The documents translated were couched in Aramaic of 
a Southern dialect with which the translator was not sufiiciently 
acquainted, being himself from the North. 

In the case of chapters vii. and xv. it is difficult to decide 
between translation-Greek and mere Semiticising Greek. A slight 
presumption in favour of translation- Greek might be found in 
the possibility that the author himself acted as translator, but 
literal fidelity in translating is very common and Luke has set 
his stamp on every chapter of his books. 

This possibility that Luke himself was a translator of Aramaic 
sources has been brought well within the range of discussion by 
the splendid observation of Torrey,^ viz. that eTrt to avro = lahda. 
This betrays a translator from the North, who was ignorant of 
the Judean meaning of lahda = cr(j)6Spa.^ Combined with the 
Eusebian tradition of Luke's Antiochene descent, the case for 
Luke seems to become a good deal stronger. 

A discussion of the arguments for the unity of " 1 Acts " as unity of 
a whole only partly falls within the scope of this chapter. An ' ^ ^'^^^'' 
obvious difficulty is perhaps unduly neglected by Torrey on 
pp. 64 &., viz. that this supposed Aramaic author of " 1 Acts " 
would have been a veritable dme soeur of Luke. If his Aramaic 
went so easily into a Greek that after all is decidedly Lucan, 
one might even turn the case the other way round and assume 
that Luke had written an Aramaic treatise (as Josephus did), 
embodying fragments of Aramaic of Southern provenance. The 

1 Torrey, op. cit. pp. 10-14, but cf. Cadbury, A.J.Th., July 1920. 

2 On p. 37 Torrey treats xii. 20 dv/jLop-axi^v as a case for Nin, to be angry, 
which, however, is said to have been translated in such a way as to better 
agree with the Southern meaning of this root than with the Northern dialect. 
But in Cook's Glossary of Aramaic Inscr., Cambridge, 1898, p. 56, this root 
is quoted from Zenjirii with the meaning ' turath.' As Torrey assigns xii. to 
his Aramaic document, a point which would tell against his position may be 
ruled out in this way. 

56 THP: composition AND PUEPOSE OF ACTS i 

problem of sources in "1 Acts " is not discarded by making 
Luke the translator of an Aramaic document : it seems merely 
to shift one step backwards. Moreover, the unity of " 1 Acts " 
as " translation - Greek " from one end to the other does not 
appear to be proven by conclusive evidence. 

A word or two might be added to complete the case. A 
dividing line has been drawn above at v. 16, and it is proposed 
that V. 17-ix. 30 (with the possible exception of chapter vii.) 
should be considered as not necessarily translated from Aramaic, 
but as being fully explicable as Semiticising Greek, the secondary 
Semitisms being due to the character of the available (written ?) 
traditions and to the scene of the narrative. The same applies 
to chapter xi. 19-xv. 36, with the possible exception of xv. 1-36. 

On pp. 32, 33, however, Torrey discusses v. 17 : avaara'i 
he 6 apyiepev'^ koX 7rdvTe<i ol aiiv avTw, t) ovaa alpeac<i tcov ^ao- 
hovKaicov. It is said that one does not " stand up " to be " filled 
with anger." The text itself, however, makes it necessary to 
refer avaard'i to eire^oKov rd'i '^etpa<;. If TrXrjardevTe'i ^ijXov 
eire^akov had been written, not even Wellhausen or Preuschen 
would have ventured their " unmoglich." But the text is quite 
defensible as Semiticising Greek, and reminds one of Psalm vii. 7 
dvacnridi, . . . iv op<yrj aov or ci. (cii.) 14 dvaara'^ olKT€tpr]aei<; 
. . , rrjv Seiciiv and of the constructions of the verb with et?, 
eVt, dvTi, KarevdoTTLov with a hostile sense. The incongruity of 
ai/acTTa? . . . iire/SaXov is a constructio ad sensum quite easy 
in ordinary Greek and occurring often enough in the LXX. 
Perhaps Hebrew would better answer the purpose than Aramaic 
if an underlying document should be accepted. But tj ovaa 
aipecrL<i is said to be (p. 33) a careful reproduction of an Aramaic 
locution or rather a Syriac expression which more closely 
equals the Greek ovcrla. Further, on xiii. 1 Kara rrjv ovaav 
UtcXr^atav (p. 37) Torrey says : " The Aramaic was probably 
simply (or TTTVi^) n^N ^i nh^i;?, no accompanying adverb being 
necessary, since it was made evident by the context. The com- 
mentators sometimes compare Rom. xiii. 1, also Acts xviii. 17, 


etc. ; but these passages are not really parallel cases, since in 
them the participle, or its equivalent, is indispensable. Other 
passages in the Aramaic half of Acts where rr^N ""T seems to 
be rendered are xi. 22 and xiv. 13." 

The use of di ith, however, without tham or thamnia = there, 
appears to be at least as peculiar as rj ovaa or 77x19 ecrTiv with eKel 
left out. Moreover, this would not fit well in v. 17. In xi. 22 Trj<i 
ovarj^ ev 'lepoucraXyj/M no recourse to Aramaic is wanted, while 
xiv. 13 is a different case that should be compared with xxviii. 
17 and v. 17. In these three cases rj ovaa, 6 aw, 01 6vT6<i clearly 
have the meaning " the so-called." This meaning must have de- 
veloped from the regular use of the participle followed by some 
qualifying statements, e.g. (local), xvi. 3 ovra'i iv roU tottol'; 
GKeivoi^;, xxii. 5 rov<; eKelae ovra^; ', (dignity), xxv. 23 toI^ kut 
i^o-^riv ovai (but nB omit ovac), or xix. 35 vecoKopov ovaav 
(which would give rj ovaa v€coK6po<;). In the last two cases the 
way in which usage has arisen is clear enough, cf. Armitage 
Robinson in Ramsay's Church in the Roman Empire, p. 52.^ 
The case for v. 17 is therefore, to say the least, rather doubtful 
and, as it is the first of a series of weak cases, must be abandoned. 
This will appear from a rapid survey : 

V. 28 TrapayyeAi'a Trapi]yyet.\ajX€v, cf. xxiii. 14, xxviii. 26. 

V. 41 (XTTo TTyoocrojTroT, LXX. and e.g. xxv. 16 (Kara TryoocrwTrov) or xvii. 

26 {Trav TO wp. T7;s y^}?). Neither usage is distinctly Aramaic, 
vi. 5 ivwTTLov TravTos To{i TrXy'jdoVi, cf. xix. 9, 19 (see above), and 

xxvii. 35. 

Nothing distinctly Aramaic following, the case for v. 17 as 
representing translation- Greek and not an original Semiticising 
source or tradition cannot derive the support, which it is in 
need of, from the only side left for it. 

In spite of its peculiar character chapter vii. ought not to be 

omitted. It is said that vii. 13 €v tw BevTeptp (cf. iraXcv e/c hevrepov, 

X. 15, and e'/c Sevrepov xi. 9) is Aramaic, but with ev tc5 Sevrepa) 

one must supply in thought some word ending in -p.6<i, equi- 

1 Cf. also Moulton, Prol. p. 228, and above, p. 41. 


valent to aTravrrjaei, as iyvtopladr] is the next word and the story- 
is treated as well known. Moreover, e/c Sevrepou has seven occur- 
rences in the LXX. and occurs in the Papyri (Moulton and Milligan, 
Part II., S.V., giving one instance of a.d. 123). vii. 23 ave^rj eTrl 
rrjv KapSlav avTov is not distinctly Aramaic and occurs, e.g., in 
LXX., Jer. iii. 16, xliv. 21, li. 50, Ezech. xxxviii. 10, Is. Ixv. 16 ; 
and ave^T) (^da-a t(o '^(^iXLdp'^w, xxi. 31, reminds one just as much 
of the same Aramaic verb. In vii. 38 Xoyca ^Mvra should not 
be pressed to render by mistranslation \6yia ^wt}?, much nearer 
and popular parallels being at hand, viz. the vScop ^cov koI XaXovv, 
Ignatius Ad Rom. vii. 2, the vSwp of Ezech. xlvii., which is also 
found in Od. Sal. vi., xi., xxx. Every student of modern Greek 
is reminded also of the ^covravb vepo. The expression is no more 
surprising than 6ho<i ^cioaa, Heb. x. 20, or 1 Pet. i. 23 Sid Xoyov 
^ftJi'To? Oeov Kal fiepovTO'i, or Heb. iv. 12, ^mv yap 6 \oyo<; rod deov 
kt\. The case of vii. 52 AtKaio'i for the Messiah is covered by 
xxii. 14, and the quotations by the author on p. 33 ; vii. 53 
ei9 SiaraycU dyyeXwv is a curious phrase, but not distinctly 
Aramaic and therefore open to explanation by LXX. and 
kindred usage. 

Equally weak is chapter viii. There is not one tenable case 
for translation-Greek here or in chapter ix. up to verse 30. The 
instances are : viii. 6 ev tw uKoveiv avrov<i kol (SXenreiv rd arjfxela 
a eiroUt, cf. xix. 5 (see above), xxii. 6, 17, xxviii. 8, 17. The 
corrupt text of viii. 7 is rendered in an Aramaic (p. 34) that 
" would almost inevitably " result in this corruption, viii. 10 
diro /MiKpov e&)9 jxeydXov is LXX. and even Greek ; the 8uvafic<; 
Tj KoXov/xivT] fieydXr] is a matter of exegesis and kolvi']. That 
the deity of Heaven, the great Lord of Heavens (pot2?-Si>3) 
should count in his court among other 8vvd/xeL<; also a " Grand 
Vizir," a " Lord of the Palace " (Sim^i?^), called the " Great 
One," is what should be expected. Why should not the 
Samaritans have their Michael as well as the Jews, or the 
Tarsians their Sandan ? For ix. 2 rf]<; oSov cf. above on ch. 
xix ; for ix. 3 iv 8e too Tropeveadai lyevero see above ; ix. 22 


iveSvvafiovro is not distinctly Aramaic, and occurs already in 
LXX., Judges vi. 34, Ps. li. 7. 

For chapter xi. 19-xiv. 28 the average is not better ; xi. 21 
^]v %et|0 Kvplov fJbeT avroov, cf. LXX. (e.g. 2 Sam. iii, 12) ; xi. 22 
rjKOvaOr] Se 6 X0709 eh ra wra Trj<; €KK\7]aia<;, cf. above xvii. 20 
and LXX., Is. v. 9 rjKovadrj yap 6t9 ra mtu Kvpiov 'Xa^aood ravra 
and 1 Kings x. 6, Gen. xx. 8. Of course this phrase is not dis- 
tinctly Aramaic, xi. 28 e^' o\r]v rrjv oiKovfievrjv cannot be a mis- 
translation (pp. 20, 21). A man not knowing that ni?tn means 
7>7 {sc. J)} 'lapa7]\), yP] in general, and oUovfxevr], did not know 
enough Aramaic to translate at all. It is a conscious heightening 
of colour, a common case of the " laws " of the growth of 
legendary narrative. Benigni would call it " quantitative or 
proper megalosia." ^ xii. 3 Trpoaedero avWa/Selv is a Hebraism 
which even Josephus's advisers have let slip through, xii. 10 
puf.irjv fxtav is sound kolvt] ] xii. 11 irpoahoKta is certainly sharper 
defined in Torrey's proposed equivalent and would be a distinct 
Aramaism, if the equation were necessary or supported by other 
strong cases. This not being the case, its inherent weakness is not 
taken away (pp. 36, 37). xii. 20 dv/xofiax(^i' (see above, p. 55, n. 
2) is not stringently for either Aramaic or Hebrew and, moreover, 
cf. Plutarch, Demetr. 22, and Ovixofia^ia, exasperation, Polyaen. 
ii. 1. 19, ps.-Justin, 1184. B. xiii. 1 rr]v ovaav, see above ; xiii. 11 
Kol vvv ISov, and xxii. 22 a^pi tovtov, cf. LXX. ; xiii. 12 e«7rX7/cr- 
aoixevo^ eiri (p. 7) is good KOLvr] after verbs of emotion ; xiii. 22 
riyetpev rov Aaueto avrol^; el<i jSaaiKea, LXX. and Kotvt] ', xu]. 24 
irpb Trpoa-uiTTov t^9 elcroSov (pp. 7, 29, 37), nothing distinctly 
Aramaic, cf. Mai. iii. 1, 2 ; xiii. 25 co? 8e iir'Xrjpov ^\(cdvri<; 
Tov Bpofiov, cf. Jer. viii. 6 {SieXLTrev 6 rpe^cav airo tov Bpofiov 
avrov) and e.g. TrXrjpovv tov %o/?oi; (Plato) or ?} 6S6<i irXripol 
£9 TOV aptdfiov TOVTOV, Hcrodotus ii. 7. Compare, moreover, 
Moulton and Milligan, " Lexical Notes from the Papyri " in 
Expositor, 1910, ii. pp. 564 f., with instances from the Kowrj 
beyond any suspicion of Aramaism. 

^ Cf. Van Gennep, La Formation des legendes, Paris, 1910, p. 293. 


I cannot understand how in xiii. 25 ovk el/xl eyoo after the 
question rl e/iie virovoelre elvai should compel us to think of 
the Aramaic n3N ndn. That Blass has stamped rt as " nicht 
ertrdglich" is not final. It is quite sound vulgar Greek. Even if 
ouK el/uil ijM were rightly interpreted " I am not he," it does not 
cover ana ana. G. P. Wetter ^ has made the formula iyco elfj-L 
the subject of special research and seems to have ascertained its 
currency as part of the theurgical vocabulary. As little dis- 
tinctly Aramaic is xiv. 2 eKaKcocrav rd'i yfrv^a<; rcov edvdov, cf. 
xviii. 10, see above ; xiv. 3 hihovTL arifiela koX re para 'ytveaOat and 
fiaprvpouvTo eirX tc3 Xoyw ri}? '^dpLTo<; aurov, cf . LXX. and kindred 
literature ; xiv. 8 '^co\o<; €k KoiXia^ fi7]Tpo<; avrov, cf. LXX. ; 
XIV. 15 evayyeXi^ofievoc diro tovtcov tcov /juaTalcov e7riarp6(f)etv eirt 
Oebv ^(ovra is all LXX. ; xiv. 17 is retro verted on p. 38 into 
eixTmrXwv Trao"?;? {7nikkol = min kol being read as mekal = rpo(^r]) 
ev(ppoavvri<; Td<i KapSia<i avrcov as " filling hearts with food " 
would be "no more Aramaic or Greek than it is English." But 
the text is by no means absurd ; eiximrXoiv Tpo(f)rj<i kuI €V(f)po- 
crvvrj<i rd'^ Kaphia^ has been telescoped from i^irnrXaiv rpo^rji^ 
rrjv yp^vyrjv, which is current in LXX., and i/x7ri7r\a)v €v(f)pocrvi'rj<; 
rrjv KapSiav, which is equally sound. There are astounding cases 
enough of i/jLiTiifj^TrXrjfit used by the LXX. in a very strange 
way, which make the invocation of Aramaic on this place super- 
fluous. Therefore, given the absence of distinct Aramaisms in this 
stretch, it is decidedly not allowable. For xiv. 27 dvijyjeWov 
oaa iiroiijaev 6 ^eo? fier avrow, cf. above, chapter xv. 4. 

These necessary deductions made, Torrey's book has much 
furthered the question of Semitisms in Acts. It has provided 
some results which, as research will be pushed further with more 
refined methods, will perhaps be conclusively proven. If cer- 
tainty is attained on the extent of the underlying Aramaic, and 
the result of these pages, that it extends over i. 16-v. 16, ix. 31- 
xi. 18, perhaps also xii. and part of xv. should be confirmed and 
corrected by research, the gain for the criticism of Acts would 

1 See G. P. : son Wetter, Der Sohn Gottes, Gottingen, 1916. 


not be small. Perhaps also the case for Luke as a translator of 
these Aramaic documents could be made more stringent, which 
would certainly increase the value of these results. 

For the philology of Acts no more can be hoped than an 
increased value for some secondary Semitisms in those parts of 
the weak stretches, which may perhaps gain the support of some 
distinct Aramaisms that will stand criticism. Perhaps also some 
primary Semitism may be found which will strengthen the case 
for Luke. If it should be discovered in a chapter beyond xv., 
this would be conclusive, but I do not think either of these cases 

Without further reference to the investigations to which the 
theory of the composition and date of Acts formulated by Torrey 
must give rise, the subject is important enough to justify the 
discussion of some more isolated cases of secondary Semitisms. 

The replacement of a predicative case by et? {e.g. Acts vii. 21, 
xiii. 22-47) might seem a not unnatural extension of the use of 
€49 expressing destination, but it appears in Acts only in the 
sphere of LXX. diction. The Papyri and Inscriptions, moreover, 
disclaim this suspicion : ^ C.I.G. xiv. 607 ei9 la aou, lioi [xiriXka, 
Kol el's Kplva /3\aar7]aecai' oarea . . . , or Philologus vii. p. 82 
<ne<^eiv eh yv/xvaaiap-^ov, Pap. Fay. 119 (a.D. 100) 7va fxr} eh 
■\lr(opLLov jii'Tjrai. A somewhat out -of -place LXX. -ism in the 
second part of Acts (xxviii. 15) is justified in the same way.^ 
Throughout Acts we observe the construction of iv too + Inf. It 
is one of its characteristic phrases surely apt to provoke Semitic 
associations. But we learn from Krapp ^ that the articular 
Infinitive governed by a preposition is characteristic of historical 
style from the second century B.C. to the first a.d. This helps 
us to locate our author in time, and, as far as such a minor 

^ Quoted by Radermacher, op. cit. pp. 16, 100, 121 ; cf. Moulton, op. cit. 
p. 71. 

- Moulton, op. cit. p. 14, refers to Tebt. Pap. 43 (ii. B.C.) and B.U. 362 
(a.d. 215). 

' Der s-ubstantivierte Infinitiv, Heidelberg, 1892, quoted by Radermacher, 
op. cit. p. 151. 


point will bear the stress, also in the literary world.^ The 
pleonastic demonstrative standing in apposition to a foregoing 
noun or, more often, to a participial or equivalent clause is plain 
vernacular, though not without classical precedent ^ and as 
natural to nearly every language as the so - called " pendant 
nominative " is (Acts ii. 23, iv. 10, vii. 35, xv. 17).^ The 
frequent use of periphrastic forms, especially those which seem 
to correspond to an Aramaic Imperfect, has raised suspicion. 
As has been observed above, possible traces of a Semitic mind 
in the second half of Acts should deserve special attention, and 
so the Imperfects of elvat with the Present Participle in Acts 
xiv. 7, xvi. 12, xviii. 7, xix. 14, xxi. 3, xxii, 19 are important. 
In these instances, however, the periphrasis is not real. We 
might put a comma between the two parts without damaging 
the sense. In Acts xxi. 3 airejiopri^eTo was impossible, and in 
the clearest case (xxii. 19), rjfxi^v ^vXaKt^wv koX Sepcov, we should 
remember that it occurs in a speech pronounced iv rfj 'E^patSt 
Bta\eKT(p. The Papyri, moreover, give analogous instances of 
periphrasis, and an occasional parallel is found even in the 
classics.* In other tenses it is amply justified by classical 
warrant or vernacular usage. Luke has not availed himself of 
the advantage which a judicious use of the shades of mean- 

^ Luke was consciously a historian, cf. Vogel, op. cit. pp. 12-13 (his use of 
the historical books of the LXX., especially 2 Mace, Judges, Samuel, cf. p. 5-1) ; 
Ramsay, St. Paul, passim; though, Norden, Die antike Kunstprosa, ii.^, 1909, 
p. 481, disagrees: "Acts also is relatively isolated as a literary genre, but 
to the Hellenic taste it was much less of a foreign product than the Gospels, 
for though the wrong conception that it is to be classed as historiography is 
done with, yet already the title (of course chosen for this reason) must recall 
to the Hellenic mind its own once very voluminous literature of wpd^eis." 

^ Simcox, Language of the N.T., London, 1899, p. 66, quotes Xenophon, 
Ages. 4. 4 oi wpoiKa eT< TrenovBdres, o5toi del ijd^djs inrrjpeTovcn ry evepyeTr), 
ef. Symp. viii. 33. Of course the frequency of such a construction may exceed 
the limits of natural Greel:. 

* Acts vii. 40 is quoted by Moulton, Prol. p. 69, as a typical case in Acts, 
though it is a quotation from LXX., cf. also p. 225 and references there. 

* Moulton, op. cit. p. 227, refers to Rutherford, CI. Rev. x\"ii. p. 249, for 
Thucyd. iv. 54, Antiphou (Fr. M. iii. 67), Aristoph. Ach. 484. In classical 
Greek the construction imparts some emphasis. 


ing which this usage is capable of conveying might have 
offered. 1 

Luke's general attitude towards Semitic influence is therefore character 
as hard to define as the extent to which he would or could semitisms. 
have yielded to the opposite force, Atticism or, in general, literary 
fashion. We know that he could not possibly have succeeded 
as well as Josephus ^ in this direction. We guess that he would 
never have leaned to the other side so much as his sources must 
have done. A good test case of his attitude in this matter is again 
suggested by Moulton {op. cit. p. 16). Luke alone of New Testa- 
ment writers has substituted in Acts, for the popular iyevero 
rjXde and the unidiomatic phrase of translation-Greek iyevero koX 
rjXOe, a construction of iyevero with the Infinitive. This con- 
struction is an improvement which is warranted by Papyrus 
evidence {e.g. eav yevriTai c. Inf.), and yet it does not fail to recall^ 
the sacred style. Such a fine sense in handling the language 
justifies us again in ascribing cruder expressions * to a dominant 
extraneous influence : the translated Aramaic of some of his 
sources or the exigencies of an existing more or less " technical " 
phraseology, the missionary style of Paul or of other less educated 

The existence — within these limits — of something like a "Christian 
sort of " Christian Greek " is proved, e.g., by the use of 686'i as 
equivalent to our words " religion " or " Christianity," Acts ix. 2, 
xix. 9, 23, xxii. 4, xxiv. [14] 22, 68o<i acorijpia^ xvi. 17, oSo<i rov 
Beov or Kvpiov, xviii. 25, 26.^ The absence of the current rvy- 
Xavco constructions ("by chance," " to happen to ") is perhaps 

^ Acts XXV. 10 the Perfect Participle seems to add to the sense of duration ; 
in xxvi. 26, however, this is evidently not the case. 

^ Thumb, Die griechische Sprache im Zeitalfer des Hellenismus, Strassburg, 
1901, pp. 125 f., quotes W. Schmidt, Fleckeisens Jahrbb. xx. pp. 514-517, for the 
one Semitism of which Josephus is guilty, viz. wpoaTid^crdai c. Inf. It is 
found also once in Acts xii. 3, as has been observed above. 

' '^vvijir} was in the author's vocabularj^ if he preferred to leave Tvyx^-^'^ 
alone (Acts xxi. 35). 

* E.g. et's 5iaTa7ds dyyiXdiv (Acts vii. 53) or rb yevSfievov pruxa (x. 37)» 
(Twrijpla iv Tivi or dvo/na iv Cp del (Tu6T)vai :^yuaj (iv. 12), and many other cases. 

^ Cf. the remarks on this case above. 


also significant. So certainly are the constnictions of inaTevoi 
with eVi (Acts ix. 42, xi. 17, xvi. 31, xxii. 19) or et? (x. 43, 
xiv. 23, xix. 4) instead of the dative (v. 14, viii. 12, xvi. 34, 
xviii. 8, xxiv. 14, xxvi. 27), which correspond with our to believe 
on and to believe in. In the LXX. the prepositional construction 
is extremely rare,^ though it may have been the starting-point. 
Even the dative is not used of simple trusting, but it carries a 
religious sense, God, an Apostle, or the Scriptures being the 
objects. Less markedly Christian is the construction of eva^^- 
yeXl^ea-dai,. In this case Phrynichus ^ preferred the dative to 
the accusative for the person addressed. The technical sense, 
" to evangelise" was, of course, favourable for the accusative, 
the dative being used only ^ when the message was already 
. added in the accusative (viii. 35, xvii. 18). The LXX. did, of 
course, not yet know this technical sense, and the corresponding 
construction is therefore absent. 

Greek of The Greek of Acts— to summarise the case — is essentially 

' livin" ' living : it combines conflicting elements into a real unity. This 
unity, however, was residing ultimately in the mind of the author. 
It was natural for him — and this intention has guided him all 
along the way — to hold the upper side of the popular language. 
A sprinkling of more or less literary words and constructions bears 
witness to this tendency even in the first chapters, where it was 
restrained by the nature of his sources and by an adaptation of 
the style to the scene and the persons acting in it. There is also 
a generally recognised picturesqueness and dramatic power in 
his style and a movement in the narrative which makes it some- 
times proceed by leaps and bounds. This is perhaps not only 
due to the individual character of the author, but it may have 

^ Is. xxviii. 16 6 TTLarevwu iir' aurcp ; Sap. Sol. xii. 2 iri.aTevffiiKTi.v iiri ae 
Kvpie; Pa. Ixxvii. 26 Trtarevu) eu. Ps. Ixxvii. 36 and Jer. xii. 6 are different 
in sense. 

^ Ed. Rutherford, ccxxxv. pp. 334 f. 

^ Double accusative in Acts xiii. 32, but here the accusative of the message 
is taken beforehand from the following clauses. 


had even a deej)er cause. The same is to be observed in Vergil,^ 
and there it is signalised as marking Alexandrian influence. 
As a reaction against the compact uninterrupted narrative style, 
pathetic effects and an episodic composition, meant to give a 
dramatic movement to the whole, were preferred. Plutarch ^ 
appreciated these characteristics in history, and Luke seems to 
be in this stream. Yet on the whole his style must have been 
a serious drawback. It answered his purposes, being well 
adapted to the foreign scene and the exceptional subject, but, 
imless more narrative prose of this technique should come to 
light, we can but guess that he went far enough in the first half 
of his booklet. His personal style is seen in those speeches and 
narrative portions of the latter half, where he seems to have 
had a free hand, though even here he may have been under the 
restraining influence of his Christian readers, and that to a greater 
extent than we are able to detect. Yet he undoubtedly is the 
most Greek of New Testament writers,^ perhaps also in this 
regard, that he has a fine sense of humour * and a certain reserve 
of power. 

^ Kroll, oj). cit. pp. 521 ff., " He aims everywhere at dramatic and pathetic 
effects and abandons carelessly whatsoever is not serviceable to these ends. 
'EkttXtj^is is the clue to his plan : discarding all attractive proKxitj' it 
steadily mounts towards culminating points which always bear a strong 
character of sentiment . . . important preliminaries are often not sketched 
or only very briefly, e.g. we do not hear the end of Laocoon, and the union 
of Aeneas and Dido is merely alluded to and a part of Aeneas' wanderings is 
described with a lapidary conciseness which is quite foreign to the traditional 
style of epic poetry (e.g. bk. iii. 270 sqq.). This technique (viz. of the Alex- 
andrian iirvXKLov which had won favour during Vergil's youth) is also recalled 
by the fact that the narrative does not proceed in an uninterrupted flow but 
confines itself from time to time to a sharply limited episode, partly even 
coincident -with the limits of single books." 

* See above, p. 36, n. 1. 

' Hier. Ep. 20 "qui inter omnes evangeUstas Graeci sormonis erudifcissimiis 
fuit, quippe ut medicus." We would not be as sure of this " quippe ut medicns " 
as St. Jerome seems to be. The attitude of Galen in the days of the Greek 
renaissance under Trajan and Hadrian points in the opposite direction. 

* Cf. e.g. McLachlan, Si. Liik'\ the Man and his Work, London, 1919. 




By William Kemp Lowther Clarke 



A. The influence of the LXX. on the vocabulary of Acts as shown by 
an examination of (i.) the entire vocabulary, (ii.) peculiar words, (iii.) 
characteristic words and phrases. 

B. Special afiinities of Acts with the apocryphal books, esi:)ecially : 
(i.) 2 and 3 Maccabees, (ii.) Tobit, (iii.) Judith, (iv.) Wisdom, (v.) the 

C. The bearing of the LXX. on three important problems : (i.) The 
/!J-text, (ii.) Luke and Josephus, (iii.) Luke's medical language. 

IL FoRniAii Quotations 

A. Substantially LXX. : (i.) Exact agreement, (ii.) close agreement. 

B. Substantial variation from LXX., due to (i.) loose citation, (ii.) 
substitution of a gloss, (iii.) adaptation to circumstances of fulfilment, 
(iv.) conflation, (v.) recensional causes, (vi.) translational causes. 

III. Informal Quotations, Reminiscences, and Allusions 

A. In the speeches. 

(i.) Confirmation of results of previous section, 
(ii.) Light on problem of sources of Acts. 

B. In the narrative. 

(i.) List of passages where influence is possible or probable, 
(ii.) Conclusions. 

BibUcai Dr. Hatch in Ms Essays in Biblical Greek (1889) maintained the 
'^^^' unity of Biblical Greek and the consequent unique importance 



of the Greek Old Testament as a guide to the interpretation of 
the New.^ The movement of critical opinion during the ensuing 
quarter of a century has been a continued reaction from this 
position. Dr. T. K. Abbott (Essays chiefly on the Original Texts 
of the Old and New Testaments, 1891) discussed Hatch's work 
and concluded that the influence of the LXX. had been much 
exaggerated.^ One verdict of his is worth recording, since it 
has been so strikingly confirmed by the course of events. " The 
number of instances in which the Septuagint alone vouches for 
the use of particular words, small comparatively as it is, would 
no doubt be considerably diminished if our knowledge of the 
current popular language was greater." ^ A fuller treatment of 
the subject was provided by Dr. H. A. A. Kermedy in his Sources 
of New Testament Greek (1895), the sub-title of which is The 
Influence of the Septuagint on the Vocabulary of the New Testa- 
ment. His conclusion was that the light thrown by the LXX. 
on the New Testament is of considerable importance, but simply 
because the LXX. is " the only other record we possess of the 
current popular speech prevaihng at the time." * On this show- 
ing the LXX. must by now have lost much of its importance, 
since the popular speech has become well known, thanks to the 
numerous discoveries of papyri in Egypt. The papyrologists, as 
was natural, have been inclined to emphasise the importance of 
their own contribution to New Testament research, and Professor 
Deissmann in Bible Studies (Eng. ed., 1901) minimised the signi- 
ficance of the LXX.^ Probably the reaction has gone too 
far, and Dr. Milligan's caution was needed : " The denial of a 
distinctive ' Biblical ' or ' New Testament Greek ' is often too 
unqualified to-day owing to the recoil from the old position of 
treating it as essentially an isolated language, and the whole 
question of how far the Greek of the New Testament deviates 

1 See especially pp. 10-12. 2 pp_ 67 ff. 

2 P. 87. * P. 137. 

^ Pp. 64-70; cf. J. H. Moulton, Orammar of Neiv Testament Greek (2nd 
ed., 1906), passim. 


from the Kocvy'] requires a fuller discussion and statement than 
it has yet received." ^ 
Tke Lxx. The fact is that the LXX. was the Bible of Jews and Christians 
alike, and the primitive Church, conscious of being the new Israel 
of God, found a natural medium for self-expression in biblical 
phraseology. Of course Christian wTiters vary in the use they 
make of the LXX. The second Gospel shows few traces of its 
influence, the Lucan writings very many. Dr. Harnack, writing 
on the assumption that Luke was of Gentile parentage, remarks 
paradoxically : " We must also remember that St. Luke as a 
theologian, Hke all Gentile Christians, was more a man of the 
Old Testament than St. Paul, because he had never come to a 
real grip with the problem it presented." ^ It is hoped that the 
present chapter, devoted to an independent discussion of the 
problems of the relation of Acts to the LXX., will throw some 
light on the extent to which Luke was " a man of the Old 

Some have maintained that the dependence of much of the 
New Testament, and especially the Lucan writings, on the LXX. 
is not to be confined to vocabulary and style. Dr. Selwyn, 
who represents such views in England, supposed that much of 
the Acts was deliberately composed on LXX. models.^ Luke 
was a prophet and, as such, set himself to find fulfilments of 
the Old Testament scriptures in the everyday incidents of 
missionary travel. In the com'se of several books it was impos- 
sible that Dr. Selwyn should not point out a number of interest- 
ing parallels between the two Testaments ; but much of his 
work seems to suffer from an excess of ingenuity. For instance, 
when the apostles entered Macedonia, they are supposed to have 
taken with them the book of Joshua or Jesus as a guide-book, 

^ Selections from the Greek Papyri (1910), p. xxx. 

* Luke the Physician, p. 127. 

3 See St. Luke the Prophet, 1901, The Oracles in the Neio Testament, 1912. 
Of. also The Christian Prophets, 1900, and some magazine articles. Some 
interesting suggestions on the same lines are to be found in Dr. E. A. Abbott's 


and to have seen in the topography of Macedonia an almost 
exact correspondence with that of Canaan ; the founding of the 
church of Phihppi was the spiritual antitype of the fall of Jericho, 
and so on.^ But as there are few books of the Old Testament 
that have left less mark on the New Testament than Joshua,^ 
the theory that it was considered highly significant by primitive 
Christian missionaries is improbable. Further, the conception 
of the Christian prophets as a new order of scribes, with their 
eyes glued to the letter of the Jewish Scriptures, seems curiously 
wide of the mark. Nevertheless, the theory that Luke's descrip- 
tion of events is modelled in certain cases on Old Testament 
patterns needs a serious discussion, which will be given in the 
concluding section of this chapter.^ 

A. (i.) The influence of the LXX. on the language of the Acts Vocabulary, 
may be tested first by examining the entire vocabulary. An 
overwhelming proportion of the words used in Acts, 88 per cent, 
have already occurred in the LXX.* But the proportion is 
actually less than in the Gospels, the figures for which are 
Matthew 93 per cent, Mark 90 per cent, Lk. 92 per cent, John 
93 per cent. The reason for this is clear. Luke's ^ vocabulary 
is much richer than that of the other evangelists. In the third 
Gospel more words ^ are employed than in the first ; and in the 
Acts the vocabulary is further increased by the use of terms 

^ St. Luke the Prophet, pp. 33-58. The above is a typical specimen of this 
author's method. 

* According to Swete, Int. to O.T. in Greek, p. 383, there are no quotations 
from Joshua in the N.T. 

' The materials of the following investigation were derived from an independ- 
ent study of the concordances of Hatch-Redpath and Moulton-Geden ; other 
books used will be mentioned where necessary. The LXX. is understood to 
mean the books contained in Hatch-Redpath. The later Greek versions, and 
with them Theodotion's Daniel, are excluded, but both recensions of Tobit arc 
included. Unless otherwise sto.ted, Swete's text is implied and Westcott and 
Hort's text of the N.T. The choice of books to represent the LXX. is deter- 
mined solely by the plan of Hatch-Redpath. 

* Cadbury, The Style and Literanj Method of Luke, p. 5, makes the figure 
90 per cent for Luke and Acts together. 

* Luke is used throughout for the auctor ad Theophiluin, Lk. for the 
third Gospel. 

* Some 300 more. 


peculiar to 

descriptive of the conditions of life in the first century of our 
era,i which could not be expected in the LXX. 

(ii.) When we come to investigate the words peculiar to Acts, 
we must avail ourselves of the tables provided by Hawkins, 
Horae Synopticae (2nd ed.), pp. 198-207. Of 413 w'ords pecuhar 
to Acts (proper names, Aramaic words, and numerals being 
omitted), 261 occur in the LXX. Hawkins reckons 259 ; but 
avTo^dakfielv and /ier/Jtco? should be added to his list of LXX. 
words. Out of 58 words that occur in Lk. and Acts but no- 
where else in the New Testament, 51 are found in the LXX. 
{TrepiXdfiTreiv is not in the LXX. ; the asterisk is omitted in 
Hawkins by a misprint ^). The figures for all the books may be 
given in tabular form. 

Not in LXX. 

In LXX. 

Total of 
peculiar Words. 

found in LXX. 


Lk. + Acts 

Lk. ... 














From this it is clear that Luke uses a large number of rare words 
which also occur in the LXX., but owing to the quantity of non- 
LXX. words also found in his vocabulary, the actual proportions 
are not far different from those that obtain in Matthew. 

(iii.) Further proof of the exceptional extent to which Luke's 
style is influenced by the LXX. is given by a list of characteristic 

^ In making the above calculation the pericope adiiUerae and the ending of 
Mark were excluded, as also were proper names, Aramaic words, numerals, and 
adjectives derived from numerals. If all the readings given in the concord- 
ances are included, the proportions are altered only imperceptibly. There is, 
of course, a subjective element involved in the decision whether or not certain 
forms should be counted as separate words. The figures given cannot be 
checked with the aid of Moulton-Geden alone, as the signs of this concordance 
do not distinguish between words found in the LXX. and those that occur only 
in the later Greek versions. 

* It appears in the 1st edition. 


words and phrases in Acts. By this is meant that they occur 
at least five times in Acts, and also twice as often as in the rest 
of the New Testament, excluding Lk. They reach a total of 
69. The following, 68 out of the 69, are found in the LXX., an 
asterisk following denoting those which occur at least twenty-five 
times, and ma}^ therefore be regarded as specially characteristic 
of the LXX. 

A.Xpecri'i, avhpe^ahek<^oi, aV with opt.,* a 1^(^760-^06= "embark" 
(2 Mace. V. 9), uvaipelv,* dvaXa/ji^dveiv* (eight times in Acts, 
four times in rest, excluding Mark xvi. 19), dvaard<; or dva- 
crTuvT€<;,* diroSe'^ecrdai, uTToXoyeca-Oai, drevlteiv, j3r)[Jia, ^ov\i],^' 
yiyveadai foil, by eVt with ace.,* yvcocrTO<;, SiaXiyeaOai, Sta- 
/\,e/cT09, Siaaco^eiv* hiarpijBeLv, SiacpOopd, Bi€p^€a6ai, withacc.,* 
idv,* eyKoXelv, e6o^, elirev Se or elirav Be,* eladyeiv,* eKarovr- 
dp^r]<; or -09, i\eT]fJbocrvvi],* ivOdSe, i^dyeiv* i^aTToaTeXXew* 
T) iiTLovaa {rjfiepa), iTn/SaCveLV,* iiTLKoKelv with prop, noun,* 
e^iardvai,* ^rjTrjpba, '\epovaaX.i'][x,* KaKovv,* KoXov/xevo^ with 
prop, noun, Kardyeiv* Karavrdv, KaTep-)(ea6ai,, KeXevetv* (0) 
X0709 {tov) Kvplou* p-eraTrefMireadai, vrjao^,* ^evl^eiv, ofiodv/J-a- 
86p,* ovofxarc, opafia* opi^eiv, Trat? appHed to Christ (see Isa. 
lii. 13), 'jrapajLveadai,* 'Trapa')(^prjp,a, irapprjcrid^eaOaL, 7rd<i or 
d7ra<; 6 Xao'i* rd Trepl, TrtTrXdvai* 7rXrj6o<;* irvvOdveadaL, 
ae/Seiv, 8id aropLaro^, arparrjyo'i,'^' avvehptov, ravvv, re,* vtto- 
arpiipeiv, Sid •y^eipo'i or -^eipoivj^ '^tXtap-^o'i. Sixty-eight in 
all, of which 33 are " characteristic " in the LXX. One word 
only, dvOviraTo-^, of those that are characteristic in the sense 
described above, does not occur in the LXX. ; one phrase, 
iyevero foil, by infin., has been omitted from the calculation 
owing to the difficulty of verification in the LXX. 

For purposes of comparison the corresponding figures for 
Lk. are now given. The following words and phrases, occurring 
(a) at least five times in Lk. and also (6) at least twice as often 
in Lk. as in the rest of the New Testament excluding Acts,^ 

^ See Hawkins, op. cit. pp. 15-23, where " characteiibtic " means occurring 


are found in the LXX., those with asterisks being ' character- 
istic ' in the sense of occurring at least twenty-five times. 

'Ayao-ra? or avaardvre^;* airo rov vvv, ^p€(f)o<;, yLyveadac 
foil, by eVt with ace.,* iyevero foil, by kul,* iyivero foil, by 
finite verb,* et'?;,* elireiv Trapa^oX^v, elirev he or elirav Se,* ev 
TM with infin.,* iirihiZovai, enTiardrri';, e'c^tcrrat'ai,* Ihov yap, 
'lepovaaXr)^,^ Ka\ov[jievo<i with names or appellations, Kara- 
Kklveuv, /cot\ta = womb,* Xeyecv 7rapa/3o\/]v, /xva, vo/j.iKo<i, 
irapa-x^p^jixa, 7ra<i 6 or dira^ 6 Xao^,^ 7rp6<i used of speaking to,* 
avvi-^e:v* Ti? with opt., ri? e^ vfiMv, rov before infin.,* 

One phrase only, of those that satisfy the above requirements, 
ev fjiia TOiv, does not seem to be represented in the LXX. ; of 29 
found in the LXX. 14 are " characteristic." ^ 

In the light of the statistics given in previous sections of 
entire vocabulary and peculiar words it would seem that Matthew 
was as much influenced by the LXX. as Luke and Acts ; but 
such an impression is dispelled by an extract from Hawkins's 
list (pp. 4-8) showing the words and phrases characteristic of 
Matthew that occur in LXX., the same tests and marks as before 
being employed. 

Ten occur in the LXX. — dva^oypeiv, ^pvyfio^, ryeurjdyjTO), 
evBvfxa, KXavd/xo-i, prjOev, avXXeyeiv,'^ rdXavTov, Ta0O9,* 
v7roKplTr)<;* while 9 do not occur — dpyvpia plur., /SaaiXeia touv 
ovpavSiv, ^t^dvcov, ovap, Trarrjp 6 ev (toZ<?) ovpavo2<;, nrarrip o 
ovpdvio<^, avp,/3ovXcov Xa/x/Sdveiv, avvreXeia rov aio)vo<;, tl aot 
or v/xlv BoKel ; ^ some of these prove httle or nothing, but an 
examination of the figures as a whole, as given below in tabular 
form, shows a marked difierence between the two writers in 
their relation to the LXX.^ 

at least four times in Lk., and also at least twice as often in Lk. as in Matthew 
and Mark together. The test here is made stricter in order to economise space. 

^ '^yivero foil, by infin. is omitted as before. 

* '\5ov after gen. abs. is omitted owing to difficulty of verification. 

' The above lists, though as full as possible, are not necessarily exhaustive. 



Characteristic Occurring in 
Words and Phrases. LXX. 

in LXX. 

Acts . 

Lk. . . . 

Matt. . 

69 68 
30 29 
19 10 




B. The vocabulary of Luke, far more than that of the other Lukan 
evangeUsts, is akin to that of the Apocryphal books. Out of ^^^^ ^jj^ • 
261 words pecuhar to Acts which occur in the LXX., 59 are found Apocrypha, 
only in those books which have no Hebrew equivalent (Sirach 
being counted as such for this purpose). They are as follows : 
ayvwcTTO';, dvaSiSovat, avuKptai^, dvarpecpeiv, dvriKpv; (m 
Neh. xii. 8 n*AB omit) dvrocpdaXfxelv, diraaird^eaOai, daKeiv, 
da/xevco^, cicpt^t';, ^Uocri^, Br]/x6aio<i, hidyvcocn'i, Siavvetv, eia- 
Tpe^eiv, eKXaXelv, iKTrXrjpovv, i/c7r\7]po)cn<i, eKreveia, e^virvo^;, 
€7rijiypeaOai, eTTiKOvpia, eTrtcr^aX?^?, iinrpo7n'-j, e<707]ai<;, €u6v/ji,o<i, 
i€poav\o<;, Kadr]/j.epcvo<;, KaraSiKi], KaraaeieLV, KaTaareWeiv, 
[xearovcrdaL, fierpLco^i, ovpavodev, 6')(KeL<jdaL, wavrr), TrapaLvelv, 
TTapdcrrifjLO^, irepLao-rpdirreLV, Trepiprjyvvvai, irepirpeTreip, ttXol'?, 
7rpr/VT](;, irpoaaTTeLXeiaOai, irpocrKKiveadaL, Trporeiveiv, irpo- 
TpeTrecrOai, irvpd, pcorvvadai, CTKaxfyi], aKevTj, avvSpOfn], crvv- 
eireadai, reKfxyjpiov, VTnjperelv, viro^covvvvai, (j)L\av6pai7rQ)<;, 
(piKo<ppov (>)<;, (f)v\aK(,^6iv, -^kevd^eiv. 

Compare the corresponding figures for the other books.^ 

Of 51 LXX. words peculiar to Lk. + Acts 3 are in Apocrypha onlj'. 
„ 188 . ., Lk. 28 

„ 76 , Matt. 9 

„ 40 „ .. .. Mark 5 

The affinities extend to phrases as well as individual words, 
and suggest that Luke was familiar with some at least of the 
Apocryphal books. 

The resemblance between the Greek of these books and that 2 and 3 


1 See Hawkins, pp. 198-207. 


of the Lucan writings has been noticed ere now,^ but the figures 
given here may prove of interest. Of 2061 words in 2 Maccabees 
7G5 (or 37 per cent) recur in Acts, 737 (35 per cent) in Lk., 
626 (30 per cent) in Matthew, 469 (22 per cent) in Hebrews. Of 
1267 words in 3 Maccabees 561 (44 per cent) recur in Acts, 549 
(43 per cent) in I.k., 441 (34 per cent) in Matthew, 356 (28 per 
cent) in Hebrews.^ When allowance has been made on the one 
hand for the smaller extent of Hebrews, and on the other for 
the number of common words which must inevitably be found in 
every book, the degree of affinity evinced by Lk.-Acts and 
Hebrews towards 2 and 3 Maccabees seems substantially the 
same. The extent to which Luke's style resembles that of these 
books appears also from an examination of peculiar words. 

In the whole Greek Bible two words occur only in 2 and 
3 Maccabees and Matthew : 8i,€T^<i, '^\a/jLv<i. There are none 
confined to 2 and 3 Maccabees and Mark, whereas 9 words 
are found only in Lk. and 2 and 3 Maccabees — dycovLa (?), 
avTi^aXkeiv, drep, avarrjpo'i, eTTtfcplveLV, /cXtaia, TrepiaTTTeiv, 
irpea-jSeia, avvrv^^aveiv ; and no less than 27 only in Acts and 
2 and 3 Maccabees — avdicpi,(ji<i, dvriKpvi (in Neh. xii. 8 n*AB 
omit), d(T/ceiv, dcr/ievcoi;, d(f)i,^t<i, Sijfjboaio^i, hiavveiv, elarpe-^eiv, 
itcirXripovv, iK7r\ypa>cn<; , iTTLrpoTT}], €ad')](n<;, evOvjxo'^, iepoav\o^, 
KaraareWeLV, [xearovaOai, ^erplco^, irapaivelv, 7rapd(T'r)fM0<;, 
irepip^l'yvuvaL, irpoaickivecrOai, TrporelveLV, pcovvuaOai, aKevi], 
(TweireaOai, vTro^covpvvac, (f)i\av9pct}7r(jo<i. 

These figures suggest that Luke may have read 2 and 3 
Maccabees before writing Acts. In the case of 2 Maccabees the 
suggestion is highly probable. It was no doubt known to the 
author of Hebrews, who belonged to the same literary circles 

^ E.g. by Ha.rnack, Luke the Physician, p. 105. 

* These figures are given in good faith, but not more than approximate 
accuracy is claimed for them. The labour entailed by an effort after complete 
inerrancj^ seemed hardl}' worth the while. The method employed was to make 
out a list of words from the LXX. concordance, verifying in Swete wherever 
the reading seemed doubtful, and omitting proper names and numerals ; then 
to compare tho;n with Moulton-Geden, counting all words given there as N.T. 
words. See Cadbury, op. cit. p. 7, for some similar investigations. 


as Luke.i A number Of i)lirases in Acts have no parallels in 
the whole Greek Bible except in 2 Maccabees. For example, 
ScavoLjecv rrjv KapBiav, Acts xvi. 14, 2 Mace. i. 4 ; Trepiptryvvvac 
ifxdrca or '^^crcova^, Acts xvi. 22, 2 Mace. iv. 38 ; rdaaeadai 
7]fj,epav, Acts xxviii. 23, 2 Mace. iii. 14, xiv. 21 (? Tobit v. G) ; 
Acts xxiv. 3, TTO/VX?}? elprjvr)'^ Tvy)(^dvovT€<; . • . 8ia rr}? cryi<; 
irpovoLa<i, may be modelled on 2 Mace. iv. 6 dvev /SaacXiKrj^; 
7rpovo[a<; uSvvarov elvac Tv^eiu elpi]vrj<i. The com^tly use oi 
irpovota in reference to a ruler is the same in both passages, and 
rvy^dveiv elpy^vri<i is not found elsewhere in the Greek Bible. 
But the most important instance is the description of the death 
of Herod, which seems to be dependent on 2 ]\Iaccabees in its 
use of traditional material to describe the death of a persecutor ; 
the parallels are best shown in two columns.^ 

Acts xii. 2 Mace. ix. 

20. rjv Se<J^v. 4. kirapd^ts no dvpio. 

22. 6eov cfim'7]. 10. toi' . . . twv ovpavLOiv airrpuiv 

a-Teadai SoKovvra (cf. Isa. 

xiv. 13). 
2.3. eTrd-a^ev avToi' ayyeXo'i Kvpiov. 5. 6 8e TravreTTO-Tq'i KvpLOS 6 Oeos 

rod 'l(Tpai]X e-dra^ev ai'rbi' 

(cf. 2 Kings xix. 35.) 

1 E.g. Heb. xi. 34 f . = 2 Mace. viii. 24, vi. 19, 28 ; for other parallels see 
Moffatt, Inf. to N.T. p. 32. 

Clement of Alexandria deduced from the style of Hebrews that it was a 
Greek edition made by Luke of an original Hebrew letter of Paul (see Eus. 
H.E. vi. 14). The hypothesis has found supporters up to the present day, 
see MoSatt, Int. pp. 435 fE., for the arguments in its favour, and Hawkins, 
Horae Synopllcae (2nd ed.), pp. 192/., for lists of words common to the Lucan 
writings and the other Gospels on the one side, and Hebrews on the other. 
Moffatt's own conclusion is that " community of atmosphere is all that can 
fairly be postulated." According to Moulton Luke was " the only N.T. writer 
except the author of Hebrews to show any conscious attention to Greek ideas 
of style " {Orammar, p. 18). This fact might be considered sufficient in itself 
to account for the similarity of style, but it seems unlikely that the develop- 
ment of the church at this stage was so far advanced as to admit of two 
unconnected literary circles with the same atmosphere. 

" These and all other parallels in this chapter are given for what they 
are worth ; probably recent criticism has exaggerated their value. Many 
apparent instances of borrowing are in reality examples of two writers making 
independent use of the common literary stock of the period. 


di'9' u)v ovK iSioKev TrjU 86^av 4. wTrepiy'/xxi'ojs. 7. virtprj^avla';. 

Kal yevd/x£vos triaoX.')]K6j3p(uTo<; 9. ware Kai ck tov o"w/xaTOS tow 

i^€\^v^€v. 8v(r(ref3ovs o"/ctoA7^/cas dpa^eiv. 

15. ol(ovo(3pu)Tov<;. 

xiii. 1. Mava?^v re UpwSov . . . 29. TrapcKOfxi^eTO 6e to awfia ^t- 


Most of these are resemblances of thought rather than language, 
and would hardly be worthy of attention, if it were not for the 
two striking linguistic parallels at the end. The crKcoX7]K6l3p(oro<i 
of Acts seems to be inspired by the oloyvo/Spoorovi of Maccabees,^ 
and we have a reference to the avvrpo(f)o<i (here only in New 
Testament, very rare in LXX.) of the persecutor ; but in a totally 
different coimection.^ 

Tobit. Tohit seems to have been known to Luke,^ so traces in Acts 

are to be expected. The story of Paul's bUndness reminds us 
of Tobit's similar affliction. XeirlBe^ (here only in New Testa- 
ment), ix. 18, fell from Paul's eyes ; cf. Tobit iii. 17, xi. 12, 
where Xeiri^eiv is used in the corresponding context. As the 
blind Paul needed men as ■^(^ecpaycoyovvTe'i (not elsewhere in New 
Testament except xxii. 11), so the men of Nineveh were surprised 
to find Tobit viro /jLriSevo<i -^/ecpayojyovfievov (xi. 16 N, elsewhere 
in LXX. only Judges xvi. 26 A).^ 

Judith. Judith was known to the author of Hebrews,^ possibly also 

to Luke. The speech of Stephen belongs to a fixed Uterary type, 

^ I find I have been anticipated in this suggestion, see Selwyn, Oracles in 
IheN.T. pp. 99-113. 

^ It is noticeable that the authors of Acts and 2 Maccabees are both fond 
of introducing angels. Perhaps Luke may have dealt with his source, written 
or oral, for Acts xii. in the same way as the author of 2 Maccabees may be 
supposed to have treated Jason's narrative. 

' E.g. Lk. XV. 20= Tobit xi. 9; see Simpson in Charles's Apocrypha, i. 199. 

* If the above suggestion is correct, Luke may have spoken of Xewides in 
allusion to the well-known story, and added waeL as a kind of apology for the 
expression. This would answer the objection of Preuschen, who calls the word 
in this context " eine sehr unmedizinische volkstiimliche VorsteUung." 

* Heb. xi. 34 Trape/x^oXas tKXipav dWoTpiwv ; cf. 1 Clem. 55 'Ioi>5i^ 
. . . ■^TTjaa.TO . . . i^eXdeiv els Tr)v Trapen^oXrjv t^v a.XXo4"L'Xu3v . The whole 
chapter is a commentary on the Hebrews passage ; see R. Harris, Side Lights 
on New Testament Research, pp. 1G9, 170. 


an early example of which is found in Jud. v. 5 if. (apart from 
the original passage, Exod. i. 10, KaTaao^l^ecrOai occurs in the 
Greek Bible only in Jud. v. 11, x. 19 ; Acts vii. 19). Jud. v. 
20, 21 may be compared with Acts v. 38, 39 ; ovvhpofii], apart 
from 3 Mace. iii. 8, comes in the Greek Bible only in Jud. x. 18 
and Acts xxi. 30, in Judith with 7ra/?e/i/9o\r;, in Acts with 
7rape/jb/3o\7] in the same context, xxi. 34 ; Kadr)/x€piv6<; is found 
tvnce only in the Greek Bible, Jud. xii. 15 and Acts vi. 1, in 
similar contexts. 

There is a probability that the description of Judas in i. IS, Wisriom. 
and especially the curious use of TrpTjvt]^ {=" swollen " ?), 
was suggested by Wisd. iv. 19 : koI ecrovrai, nera rovro et? 
TTTM/xa arifiov kol ei? v/3piv tV v£/cpo2<i Si' alcovo^, on pi]^€L 
avTou<i (Kpcoi'ovi irprjvel'i, koX aaXevcrei avTOv<i €k Oeixekloiv} 

Certain atEnities which exist between Acts and the Pseud- Pseud- 
epigrapha may be fitly discussed at this point. As might be '^ 
expected, they are of secondary importance, since the eschato- 
logical motive, dominant in the Jewish Apocalypses, has left 
but faint traces in Acts. The data may be treated under three 
heads : {a) a parallel to the prison story of Acts xvi. from the 
Testaments of the XII. Patriarchs ; (6) elements in the narrative 
of the speech and death of Stephen possibly derived from Jewish 
Apocalypses ; (c) some other parallels. The references added in 
brackets are to Dr. Charles's edition of the Apocrypha and Pseud- 
epigrapha, 1913. 

(a) Acts xvi. Testament of Joseph viii.^ 

(Charles, ii. 349). 

23. TToXAas 8e liviOkvTi.^; avTOis 4. kuI ekOwv 6 dvrjp arr/'/s e/iuAe 

TrAi^yds e/SaXov ei's <fiv\a- pi els cfivXaKYfv kv tco avToC 

Kqv, TrapayyetAarres tw Se- otKW Kal ry e^vj's /zaorcywcras 

(TfJiO(f)i'XaKt aatjiaXwi Tifpelv e^iTreprpe fxi el's t^]v tov ^apaw 

aVTOVS. €ipKT->]V. 

1 See F. H. Chase, J.T.S., January 1012, and R. Harris.^m. Journ. ofTheol, 
January 1914. 

* Dr. Charles's edition of the Greek text. Most of this section is taken from 
a note of mine in J.T.S., xv. (1914) p. 599, with the permission of the editors. 


24. OS TrapayyeAiav roiavrvjv Aa- 

I3mv i/SaXiv avTovs ets ttjv 
ea-wrepav <f)vXaKr]v Kal tovs 
TToSas rj(T(f)aXi(raTo avTwv els 
TO ^vXov. 

25. Kara 8e TO /xea-ovvKTiov UavXos 

KOL 2iAas TrpoarevxofJievoi 
v/jivovv Tov Oeov, iirrjKpowvTO 
Se ai'Twv 06 6ecr//.tot. 

5. Kal (lis 'qfJ.rjv kv rots Secrixols, rj 
AlyvTTTLa (rvv(.i\eTo utto t-Ijs 


/cat {TrrjKpoaro (j.ov 
ttQs iifj-vovv Ki^ptoj' 
e;' o'lKip ctk6tov$ Kal 
ev iXapq, (puvrj 
Xdipt^" ido^a^ov 


5ta Trpocpdaews cltt- 
7]Wdyr}v TTJs Al- 

29. atrvycras Se <^wTa €/cre7rv^S?;rrei'. 

iXGovcra 5f fV?;- 


7]i'xa.picrTow t(2 
Kvpiip Kal v/j,vovt' 
iv oUku) tov (Tk6tovs 
Kal exaipou iv 
iXapa (puvrj do^d- 
^U)v TOV Oebv /xov, 
oTi 5ia Trpo(pdcrews 
dwTjWdyTiv ttJs 

ii. 3. TOV SecTfjLOcl^vXaKos. 
ix. 4. ijKovcre ttJs <^ce»i'/]s iJ-ov Trpocr- 

vii. 3. TOT€ oSv evKaipiav XafSovcra 

ei(reTrrj8r]a-€ irpos /xe. 

The two narratives have in common (i.) a beating ; (ii.) a double 
casting into prison ; (iii.) the mention of bonds; (iv.) the con- 
necting of a house with the prison, see Acts xvi. 34 ; (v.) two 
words — 86a/jbo<f)v\a^ and eiraKpoaaOat — which do not occur else- 
where in the Greek Bible, though ap'^tSea/jiocfyvXa^ is found in 
Gen. xxxix. ; and (vi.) one word — elairrjSdv — the only other 
occurrence of which in the Greek Bible is Amos v. 19. The 
effect is cumulative, and some literary connection between the 
two passages becomes highly probable. 

(6) The following parallels to the story of Stephen are worthy 
of notice. I offer no opinion as to the extent to which Christian 
elements occur in these apocalyptic writings. 

Acts vii. Ass. Mos. iii. 11 (Charles, ii. 417). 

36. oStos e^r^yayev aurous Troiy](rus Moses . . . who suffered many 

TepaTa Kal (ri][xeLa ev Trj things in Egypt and in the Red 

AiyvTTTio Kal ev 'Epvdpa gea and in the Trildemess during 

QaXda-crr] kuI ev Tjj epjixu) forty years.^ 

eTYj Te<T(TapaKOVTa. 

1 This combination of words does not occur jn the LXX. 


Apoc. Mos. xxxiii. 2 (ii. 149). 
55. arevio-as eis ruv ovpavhv elSey Aiid she [Eve] gazed steadfastly 
Sd^av 6tov KaVlrja-ovv hrTMTu. into heaven, and beheld a chariot 
Ik Se.s^twi' Tov deov ... of light . . . 

Apoc. Mos. xlii. 8 (ii. 153). ^ 

59, 60. rhv ^Tec/)ai'oi' iiTLKaXov- But after she had prayed, she 

fievov Ku.l Xeyovra Kvptc gazed heavenwards and groaned 

'lr](Tov, Se^aL to Trveu/xa /xov aloud and smote her breast and 

. . . KO.I TovTO eiTTwi' iKOL/xi^drj. Said : " God of all, receive my 

spirit," and straightway she 
delivered up her spirit to God. 

In illustration of Acts vii. 38, rod dyyeXov tov \a\ovvTo<; 
auTM ev Tft) opei '%iva, may be adduced Jub. i. 27, ii. 1 (Charles, 
ii. 13), where the angel talks with Moses on the mount, and the 
(later) preface to Apoc. Mos. (ii. 138), where the angel is 
identified as Michael. 

(c) Acts i. 8 t'ft)? ecr-^drov t>;9 7^79. Cf. Ps. Sol. viii. 16, 
where Pompey is described as tov a7r' ea-^ciTov t?/? 7^79 (ed. Ryle 
and James, Charles, ii. 641). 

Acts i. 18 Trprjvrj^ <yevo[xevo^ iXaKrjaev fieao<i, koI e^e-^vdrj 
TTcivTa TO, (Tirkdy^va avTou. Cf. The Story of Ahikar, viii. 38, 
Arabic (Charles, ii. 776). " And when Nadad heard that speech 
from his uncle Haiqar, he swelled up immediately and became 
like a blown-out bladder. And his limbs swelled and his legs 
and his feet and his side, and he was torn and his belly burst 
asunder and his entrails were scattered, and he perished, and 
died. And his latter end was destruction and he went to hell." 
Cf. Acts i. 25 ; if Trpz/i'v;? in i. 18 may be translated " swollen " 
(see p. 77) the resemblance becomes more striking. 

Acts ii. 8 UdpOoi Ka\ MySoi. Cf. 1 Enoch Ivi. 5 (ii. 222), 
where the " Parthians and Medes" are " the chief nations in the 
league against Israel " (Charles, The Book of Enoch, 1912, in he). 

Acts viii. 10 0VT0<; ecrriv rj Avvafii<; tov deov r; KoXovfjievr) 

MeydXr). Cf. Jub. xl. 7 (ii. 71), where the PJgyptians proclaim 

^ See Charles, ii. 126, where the editor apparently sees no Christian influence 


before Joseph " 'El, 'El wa 'Abirer," rendered by Charles, " God, 
God, the Mighty One of God," and explained as " the title of a 
great magician." 

C. There are three important questions which arise in 
connection with Acts, in each of which it is natural to ask 
what bearing, if any, the LXX. has on the problem : (i.) the 
" Western " or /S-text, (ii.) Luke and Josephus, (iii.) the author's 
medical phraseology, 
(i.) The There are some 50 words ^ used in the Codex Bezae version 

^-text. ^1 Acts, which do not occur elsewhere in the true text of Lk. 
or Acts, it being assumed for this purpose that the Westcott and 
Hort text is the true one. 

Thirty-one of these are found in the LXX. : heiktvov iii. 1, 
(T(f>vp6v iii. 8, avvenTropeveaOai iii. 11, /Sapvveiv iii. 14, ivepyeta 
iv. 24, htaKpio-i'; iv. 32, eyKXsUiv v. 23, /xiaiveiv v. 38, rvpavvo^ 
V. 39, (f>v'ya8eveiv vii. 29, SiaXifiTrdveiv viii. 24, xvii. 13, dfjLfj.o<i 
vii. 24, irpoaeyyl^eiv x. 25, hiaaaiielu x. 25, ^eXriov x. 28, 
dKovaT6<; xi. 1, iTriXd/xTretv xii. 7, vixraetv xii. 7, ^adfio'^ xii. 
10, eirLTvy^dveuv xiii. 29, eiridveLv xiv. 13, eTno-eieiv xiv. 19, 
diroarepelv xvi. 19, dva/JiCfiv7](TK€cv xvi. 35, dvairto^ xvi. 37, 
TTapiSeiv xvii. 30, evnOevai xviii. 4, Kara^odv xviii. 13, 
67rc(f)ep6Lv xix. 12, i^opKi^eiv xix. 14, evdWeaOat xix. 16 
dfjL(f)oSoi> xix. 28, '7r\€iaTo<; xix. 32, duep-^eaOac xxi. 11. 

On the other hand, 19 do not occur in the LXX. : 
avvehpio<i v. 35, e'm')(eipriarL<i xii. 3, rv^ov xii. 15, i^avolyeiv 
xii. 16, ■^Siara xiii. 8, erepax; xiii. 35, avdWeaOat xiv. 10, iMeyca 
XV. 4, av^)]Trjcn<; xv. 7, iiriKpa^eLv xvi. 39, hiLaropelv xvii. 23, 
diroXaXelv xviii. 25, avyKaraveveiv x^^ii. 26, crui'Te;^i'tTr/9 xix. 25, 
7r€/ii7rTato<i xx. 6, v7ro\dfji7ra<i xx. 8, iroTairdyi XX. 18, ofiocre XX. 
19, KaTa(j)(ov€Lv xxii. 24, Trpoareivetv xxii. 25. 

Several words in the above lists are clearly scribal blunders, 
and it must be remembered that a corrupt text, such as Codex 
Bezae confessedly is, comes badly out of such an inquiry. How- 

1 These lists, though as full as I have been able to make them, are not 
necessarily exhaustive. 


ever, the evidence, so far as it goes, does not suggest any marked 
difference between the a and ^ texts in their relation towards 
the LXX. In two instances the author of the Bezan gloss seems 
to use the Hellenistic Old Testament in exactly the way that 
has been shown above to be characteristic of Luke : Acts iv. 24 
eTTi'yvovre'i ryv rod Oeov evepyeiav . . . koX elwov AeaTrora 
kt\. = Z Mace. V. 28 tovto 8e 7]v ivepjeia tov irdvra he- 
(nroT€vovTO'i Oeov, cf . v. 12, 2 Mace. iii. 29, Wisd. vii. 26 ; and 
Acts viii. 24 09 ttoWo. KXaicov ov BieXifjuTravev = Tob. x. 7 ov 
Sce\lfjL7rav€v Oprjvovcra. 

The question of the influence of Josephus turns upon certain (ii.) Luke 
passages wherein Luke appears to have been influenced by josephus. 
Josephus. But the general resemblance of vocabulary and 
style between the two authors forms a subsidiary argument, 
which has been worked out in great detail by Krenkel, Josephus 
und Lukas (1894), pp. 289 fE. 

He examines the 751 words ^ peculiar to the Lucan writings 
in the New Testament, and gives four tables of results. Out 
of the 751 {a) 309 are found in Lk.-x\cts, LXX., and Josephus ; 
(6) 87 in Lk.-Acts and LXX., but not in Josephus ; (c) 178 in 
Lk.-Acts and Josephus, but not in LXX. ; {d) 177 in Lk.-Acts, 
but neither in LXX. nor Josephus. He concludes that a writer 
who, on the one hand, shows his dependence on the LXX. so 
clearly, and, on the other, has more than twice as many peculiar 
words in common with Josephus as he has with the LXX., must 
have been influenced by the former in a greater degree than by 
the latter.2 

Unfortunately Krenkel' s work was written before the Oxford 
concordance to the LXX. was available, and considerable deduc- 
tions must be made before his figures can be accepted. Of his 
third list no less than 78 words which are said to be absent from 
the LXX., are actually found there, or 83, counting doubtful 

^ Note that Hawkins makes 413 + 58 + 261 = 732 peculiar words, by a more 
careful scrutiny of doubtful readings j see above, p. 70. 
2 p. 331. 


readings not found in Swete's text. Of these 74 come in those 
parts of the Greek Old Testament which have no Hebrew 
equivalent -"^ : dyvoxxTOf;, dycovia, atriov [ = alria), avahihovaL, 
avaiSeia, avd'Trripo<i, dvarpecfieiv, dvevplcxKeLV, dvTLKpv; (wT-th 
gen.), diroSe'^eaOai, diro^^v^eiv, dcTKelv, dafievw^, a(/)t^/9, 
Bi]/jlo<tlo^, SidyvaxTL';, htavveiv, ejKvo'i, idt^etv, elarpi'^eLv, 
eKXaXeiv, eKriveia, 6^vttvo<^, eTTi^odv, tTri/SovXi], eTTfyiveaOai, 
eTTLKOvpia, iirLKpLveLV, €7ria(f)a\i]<;, iirirpoTrr], evepyerrj^, 
€udvjULO<;, i6poau\o(;, KaOrj/Mepivo'i, KarahiKri, Karaaeleiv, 
KaTaareWetv, KXtala, \^po<i, XvcnreXelv, fxerpUo'?, fioyi';, 
ovcrta, o-^Xeiv, TrapdSo^o'?, irapaivelv, irapdcrrjfxo'i, Trepipjjyvvvat, 
irepLTpeTreiv, ifXov^, Trpsc/SeLa, irprjvi'}^, TrpoaKkii'eiv, irporeLveiv, 
TrporpeTrecrOat, pcovvva-Oat, avfiirapeivat, (TV/x(f)veiv, avveXavveiv, 
avveTreadai, avvoSeveiv, avi'Tvy^dveiv, reKjJLrjpLOv, reXea^opeiv, 
VTTTjperelv, uiro^dWecv, viro^covvvvai, v7ro/cpivea6ai,, virovoelv, 
vTTO'^cope'iv, (pi\av6pct)7ro)<;, (pcXoi'eiKia, <pLXo(f)pov(o<;, 'yXevdl^eiv. 
Four actually occur in the rest of the LXX. — eKelae, piTrreiv,^ 
avvTpo(f)o^, cr(f>vpov — while ^droi;, eviropia, TrpoaaTretketv, afcevj], 
avfi'jrXTjpovv are given in Hatch-Redpath, though absent from 

In this way the non-LXX. peculiar Lucan words, which Luke 
has in common with Josephus, are brought down to about 
one hundred. A further reduction may be made for a few 
nautical terms, which could hardly be expected in the LXX., 
where the subject is practically unrepresented, and also for such 
words as dv6v7raTo<;, a-e/Saarc'i, and others which are specially 
applicable to the conditions of the first century. The number 
of peculiarly Lucan words absent from the LXX. but found in 
Josephus thus becomes about equal to those which are in the 
LXX., but absent from Josephus, and this part of Krenkel's 
argument thus loses its force, 
(iii.) Medi- The argument in Hobart's The Medical Language of St. Luke, 

cdphrase- ^j^j^j^ g^gj^ siucc the publication of Harnack's LuJcas der Arzt 

1 See p. 73. 

- See Thackeray, Qrammar of Old Testament Greel; i. p. 244. 


still remains the classic presentment of the theory that the 
language of Lk. and the Acts shows that the author had received 
a medical training, is twofold, being based on (a) the supposition 
that the narratives of healing disclose a special medical interest, 
and (6) the employment by Luke of a number of non-medical 
terms of frequent occurrence in medical books. 

As regards the latter, if it can be shown that these words are 
found in the LXX., it is as legitimate to accovmt for their presence 
by Luke's familiarity with the Greek Scriptures as by knowledge 
of medical literature. 

The figures for Acts are as follows. Of the words claimed 
by Hobart as medical (of which 6 do not occur in Westcott and 
Hort), about 84 per cent are found in the LXX. (including 5 
not given in Swete's text). Out of the 30 non-LXX. words, 4- 
may be disregarded — uvevOero'i, o-^XoTrotelv, aKa)\7]K6^p(oro>i, 
avvOpvineiv — since Hobart produces no parallels, only analogous 
formations, 2 occur in a nautical context in chapter xxvii., where 
it seems perverse to suppose any medical interest — /co\v/jLl3av, 
uTTOTpi'x^eLv — and 23 are given in Liddell & Scott's lexicon 
as used by authors of the classical and pre-classical periods : 
u.KoyXvTCO'i, di'ttKadi^etv, uTroKaTaaracn'i, aairia^ aaiTo<;, d^Xy?, 
BuiTTupeiv, Sta-^eiplteadac, Svaevreptov, elaKoXelv, iirafcpodaOai, 
iiTi^ri ixelv , eviropeladai, KadcLTTTeiv, KKtvdpiov, oSonropeiv, 69ov7], 
ofiore^vo^i, Traporpvveiv, TrlfXTrpaadat,, irpocnTri'yvvvai, av^/Kivelv, 
cvvaXil^eadai. One word only remains, dftyrepi/co?, and it is 
hard to see why any writer should have described high ground by 
this term because he was familiar with its technical sense of 
" emetic." 

This does not necessarily invahdate the argument, for Luke's 
choice of LXX. words may have been determined by his previous 
training, but it certainly makes a restatement of it desirable. In 
a few cases Luke seems to have used LXX. words, but in the vast 
majority of instances he employed such words as would have 
occurred to an educated Greek with Jewish connections.^ 
^ See further, p. 68. 


Turning to Hobart's argument from the use of teclmical 
medical language in narratives of healing, we find it hardly 
afiected by any evidence drawn from the LXX. For this purpose 
examples from the LXX. are of no value unless they are taken 
from a more or less medical context. Harnack/ following 
Hobart, has given a Hst of passages in Acts where Luke seems 
to be using technical terms in describing disease. Very few of 
these can be paralleled from the LXX. at all. The following 
may be noted : i^e^xlrv^ev xii. 23, cf. Ezek. xxi. 7 (12), dSvvaro^ 
xiv. 8, cf. Tob. ii. IOn, vttvo) ^aOd xx. 9, cf. Sir. xxii. 7, 
/caTaTTLTrreiv xxviii. 6, cf. 4 Mace. iv. 11. However, these 
parallels are of httle importance compared with the mass of 
evidence which Hobart has brought from medical writers. His 
argument is cumulative. Even one such phrase as that in 
xxviii. 8, 7rvpeToc<i koI hvaevrepiw (jvveyop.evov, deserves 
attention ; ^ for here there are three usages without parallel in 
the LXX. — SvaevTeplo), the plural of irvpero^ and awi^eadai 
of disease.^ 

Formal Actual quotatious in the Acts from the Old Testament * must 

^ Luke the Physician, pp. 175-198. 

^ In the Gospel, Luke's alterations of the Marcan narrative in stories of 
miraculous healings give the best opportunity for investigating the problem. 
Harnack, Luke the Physician, pp. 182 fE., gives ten passages of this nature ; 
in four of these there is a possibUity of Luke having been influenced by LXX. 
phraseology : (i.) Lk. iv. 35 = Mark i. 26, pifav substituted for (nrapd^av. 
awapda-aeLv comes 4 times in LXX., piirreiv over 100 times, and is constantly 
used of casting a body on to the ground ; (ii.) Lk. iv. 39 = I\Iark i. 30 with 
iTTicTTas ^TOLvw avTTJs 4Tr€Ti/jL7]ffe T(2 TTvpeTi^, 1X1 place of Trpocre\d(l}v ■Ijyeipev avTijv 
Kparrjcras ttjs xs'P<^S' SrTj^at iwdfu} Tivbs is a LXX. phrase, e.g. Gen. xvui. 2, 
a passage perhaps familiar to Luke ; cf. Acts x. (see below, p. 103 note). There 
is no parallel to dweTi/j.-ijaei' rtp irvperQi in LXX., nor is one given by Hobart ; 
(iii.)Lk. V. 18 = Markii. 3. Luke substitutes TrapaXeXvpLeuos (5 times in LXX.) 
for irapaXvTLKSs (not in LXX.); (iv.) Lk. viii. 55 = Mark v. 42. Luke intro- 
duces Kal iiTi(TTpe\pev rb irvevp.a avTTJs, a LXX. phrase ; see Judges xv. 19 (cf . 
also 1 Kg. xvii. 21). 

^ But it is joined with (pd^ui in Job iii. 24 and inKpiq in Job x. 1. 

The foregoing section was written in 1913-14. Prof. Cadbury's investiga- 
tions mark a great advance (see pp. 349 ff.), and had I written later it would 
have been on somewhat different lines. The results of my studies are given 
without alteration as corroborating his main position. 

* See Swete, Int. pp. 381-405; Dittmar, Vetus Testamentum in Novo, 



now be discussed, informal quotations being reserved for the 
next section. If the actual quotations are defined as consist- 
ing of passages cited by KuOoo'i yeypuTrrai or other introductory 
formula, or the context of which makes it plain that a citation 
rather than mere allusion is intended, they appear to be 28 in 
number.^ In places the criterion is somewhat subjective, especi- 
ally in chap. vii. Where the passage is prefaced by a verb of 
saying, it has been treated as a formal quotation. All three 
divisions of the Old Testament — Law, Prophets and Writings — 
are amply represented, and some books are quoted, such as 
Amos and Joel, which have otherwise left little mark on the 
New Testament. 

The citations may be divided into : A, those which are in 
exact or substantial agreement with the LXX. ; B, those which 
show substantial variation. Here again it is difiicolt to draw the 
line, and there are one or two which might without impropriety 
be put in either class.^ 

A. Passages agreeing with the LXX. may be classed as 
showing (i.) exact agreement, (ii.) substantial agreement. 

A. (i.) Exact Agreement between Acts and LXX. 

Acts ii. 25-28. Psalms xv. 8-lL 

25. Aai>et8 yap Aeyei eis auroi' • 

rrpooptLJfx-qvrhv Kvpiov evojTrtov 8. Trpooypiofnfjv rbi' Kvptov evcuTrtoi/ 

[xov 8ia 7ravT05, oVt Ik Se^twv jj-ov Sia TravTO?, on eK Se^iMU 

jiov icTTLV, 6va fxTj (raXevdio. p.ov icmv tVa /x?) craXevdu). 

26. Stu TOVTo ip<f)pdv6ri fxov y) 9. ota toPto lyixftpavdi^ i) KapSta 

Kap8ca Kol rjyaXXLdaaro 7] p.ov Kat jyyuAAtacraTO y 

pp. 130-169. In the earlier part of this article Swete's Old Testament in Greek 
has been used. Here, however, in writing out the text of the LXX. Tischen- 
dorf was followed. This was originally accidental, but it has been allowed to 
stand on the ground that Tischendorf 's text is probably nearer than Swete's 
to the text current in the first century. It seemed unnecessary to burden 
the imge with textual notes which will be added when called for at the ap- 
l^ropriate places in the commentary. 

^ See Swete, Int. p. 382. On p. 388 a somewhat shorter list of citations 
is given. 

^ Textual variations will be treated in the commentary. 


y /\u)(rcrd fxov, ezL 8e Kat rj crap^ 
jjLOV KaracTKy^viocreL eir eA.7rtSi, 

27. oTt ovK ev/caraAet^eis rvyv 

\1/V)(rjv jxov eis ^St^v ouSe 

Swcrct? Tov ocrtov o^ov iSefv 

28. eyvwpLcrd'i jjlol oSovs ^W'}s, 

TrXr]pu)cr€L<i fie €V(f)po(TVvr]s 
fxera tov TrpocnoTrov crov. 

Acts iv. 25, 26. 

25. 6 ToC Trarpos 7//xwv Sta Trvei'- 

piaros ay Lov aropaTos Aat'etS 
iratSos croD etTrwv * 6va Tt 
iippva^av Wvrj Kal Xaol epLe- 
XeTi](Tav Keva ; 

26. Tvapkcrrrjcrav ol /3ao-tAet? ttjs 

y/}s Kai 01 ap^^ovre? ctdv^- 
)(^9r)(rav (ttI to avTo Kara ron 
Kvpiov KoX Kara tov ^ptcrrov 

Acts vii. 27, 28. 

27. 6 8e dSiKwv TOV TrXrjatov 

aTTWcraTo avrbv clttiov ' Tts 
ere Karea-T-qcrev ap^ovra Kal 
8iKao-Ti)v €cf) t^pLdyv ; 

28. /xt) di'eXeu' yae o-u OeXets, ov 

rporrov di'eiAes ex^^^ ''"^*' 

Acts vii. 35. 

TOVTOV TOV M(J)V(TrjV, ov i]pvrj- 
cravTO etVoi/Tes • Tis ere KaT- 
kcrTi]a-ev apxovra Kal St- 

KaO-T'/p, TOIJTOV 6 ^eoS Kttl 

dpxovTa Kttt XvTpu)ry]V an- 
ecTTaXKev crvv X^'P' dyyeAou 
Tou ocfidevTOS avTM ev Ty 


yAwcrcrd p.ou, eVt 8e Kal 7^ 
crap^ p.ov KaTa.(TKip'iii(Tei e~ 


10. oTi ovK eyKUTaAeii/'ets ttjv 

i/'i'X^/i' /-tori et's a8-ip', ovSe 
8(oo"ets Toi' ucriov (Tov tSetv 

11. lyvix)pi(Ta.<i pLoi oSot's ^wt/s * 

TrXrjpa)a-€L<i p.e evcfipoa-vvip 
p-erd Tou Trpoa-ioTTOV aov, 
repTTVOTrfTes kv tq Se^i^ crov 
ei's TeAos. 

Psalms ii. 1, 2. 

1. iVa Ti €cf>pva^av Wvq, Kal Xaol 

e/xeAcTrycrai' Kevd ; 

2. Trapea-Trjcrav ol /SacrtAfts t^s 

yvjs Kttt oi dp)^ovT€S crvvrj- 
\6i](Tav eirl to av'TO KaTct tov 
Kvpiov Kal Kara tov xP'ctoi; 

Exodus ii. 13, 14. 

13. Aeyet tw dScKOVVTL' Sua Tt crv 

TUTTTCi^ TOV ttXi^o-lov ; 

14. 6 Se etVe • Tts o"e Kareo'Tyjcrev 

dp'^ovTa Kal St/caa"T7)v ec^' 
'ijpnov ; /xiy ai'eAetr /xe crv 
6^eAets Ol' TpoTTOv dreiAes X^^^ 
TOV AtyiJTrTiov ; 

Exodus ii. 14. 

o oe enre ' Tts ere KaTea-rrja-ev 
dp^ovTa Kal SiKaa-Trjv Ic/)' 
ijp.iov ; ptj dveAetv p.e crv 
6'eAets ov TpoTTOv uverAes x^^* 
TOV AtyiiTrTtov; 



Acts xiii. 33. 

COS /cat iv TO) \pa\fjiio yeypairraL 
Tw Sevrepio • vlo'S fj.ov ei erf, 
eyw (Ti'ijiipov yeyevvijKd <Te. 

A. (ii). Substantial Agreement 

Acts i. 20. 

yeypuTTTai yap €V l3i/3X(o 
xpaXjuov yivijO'i'jTOi y 67ratvVts 
avTov iprjfj.o'i Kal fx-ij eo-TU) 6 
KaroiKwu kv o-vry, Ka't ' rrjv 
iiruTKOiryv aDTou Xafderoj 

Acts ii. 34, 35. 

34. ou yap AavelS dvefSt] et's rov'i 

ovpavovi, Aeyet Se avros • 
eiTrev kv/jios tw Kvpcw p.ov • 
Kadov €K Se^icov p-ov, 

35. ews av ^w toijs e)^6pois <tov 


Acts vii. 37 (cf. iii. 22). 

01JT0S €a"Tti' o ISlwvcrrjs o eiTras 
T0t5 vtots 'IcrpayjX' Trpocji-qTyjv dvacTTT^o-ei 6 ^eos ck 
Twv dSeXc^wz/ I'/^toJv (US e/^ie. 

Acts vii. 40. 

etTrovTes tw Aapojv " Trotr^crov 
i^jtitv ^eous ot TrpoTTopevcrovTat 
■qpuDV ' o yap Mwucrjys, oStos 
OS i^i'iyayev i'jp.d<i eK y>;s 
Atyu;rTou, ouk oiSap.€v ri 
(yev€TO avT(^. 

Acts viii. 32, 33. 

32. i) 8e 7re/Jio;)(i) t//s y/ja(/);ys I'/J' 
aveytFwcTKei' lyv- auT)y • ojs 
Tpofiarov iir). a-(f)ayrfv ij^Oii, 

Psalms ii. 7. 

Kvpios eiVe 7r/)6s p.€ ' vlos p-ov 
ei (TV, eyoj cryp-epov yeyev- 
vrjKa ere. 

between Acts and LXX. 
Psalms cviii. 8. 

yeinjdi'jTii}(rai' al {jjxepai avrov 
oAcyat, Kal ryv eTrtcTKoWyv 
avTov Aa/:Joi ere/aos. 

Psalms cix. 1. 

eiTrev o Kvpio<; rw Kvpuo p.ov ' 
Kadov €K 8e^iwv pLOv ecos ai/ 

UU) TOl'S i)(^6pOV'S <TOV VTTO- 

Deut. xviii. 15. 

Tvpocjin'iTyv Ik twv d8eX(f)(ov (xov 
ws e/t€ dvao-T>^cret crot Kvpios 
o 6eos <Tov, avTov d/cot'creo-^e, 

Exod. xxxii. 23. 
Aeyoncrt yap pof Trotvycroi' ly/xii/ 

OeoV'i 01 TrpOTTOpiVCTOVTaL 

rjp.MV. 6 yap Mwi'criys o?tos 
6 dudpioTTOs OS €^//yayej/ vyyuas 
e^ Aiyi'TTTOV, ovK oi8apei' t'l 
ykyovev avrai. 

Isaiah liii. 7, 8. 

cos TTpofSaroi' tVt ixt/iayiyi/ Vy v^yy, 


Kol u)S n/J.vh'y evavTtov Ton 
KcipovTO<i aurbi' ac^cuvos, outws 
ovK dvoiyei to (rrofia auToi'. 

Ktti ws afxvos tvavTiov Tou 
Ketpoi'TOS a(/jcui'09, outw? ouk 
(Ii'oiyei to arofj-a. 

33. €V T77 TttTreivwo-ei 1} KpLcn<s 
avTOv i]pdri • TTjv yeveav avTov 
Tts Si-qyrjcreTai ; on a'ipera.i 
aTTo Trjs yTjs 17 {'cot) aiJTOv. 

Acts xiii. 35. 
8toTi Koi ev eTepio Xeyei ' ov 
Sajcrets t^v ocrtou crov ISetv 

Acts xxviii. 26, 27. 

26. Aeywv • iropevdrjTi Trpos tuv 

Aaov tovtov Kai cittov • aKoy 
aKova-ere koI ov p^rj crvvrJTe, 
Kal j8A€7rovT€S /3A.ei/'€Te Kai 
ov p-rj l^-qre. ' k-!ra\yv9i^ yap 
rj Kap8l.a toij Aaou toi'tov, 

27. Kttt Tois wcrlv fSapeuiS 7]K0vcrav, 

Koi Tovs 6<f)6aXpovs auTwv 
eKappvcrav • p-i] irore tSwa-tv 
TOis o<^^aA/iOis Kai tois wcriv 
aKOiJcrtocriv Kai Ty KapBia 
crvvcMrLV Kai cTrto-T/se^wortv, 
Ktti idcropaL avTOVS. 

0. ev Ty TaTretvwcret ry KpLais 
ai'iTOTj y]pdr] ' rrjv yevidv 
avTov Tis ^Ln^yqcreTai ; oTt 
atperat utto t/Js yvy^ '// ^(ory 
atiTOu. . . . 

Psalms XV. 10. 
OTt ODK cyKaTaAeti/'ets ttji' ^v- 
X^^i' P'Ov €ts dSrjv, ovSe Swcreis 
Tov ocriov crov iSeiv 8ia(f)6opdv. 

Isaiah vi. 9, 10. 

Ktti eiTTS • TTOp^vdTjTi KoL (.LTTOV 

Tu Aaw TOiVo) ■ aKory aKoi'- 
o'ere Kal ov p.rj o-vvijre, Kat 
^AcTTOVTts /^Aei/'CTe Kai oij 
p.1] i8r]Te. 
10. tTra^vvdrj yap rj KapSua tou 
Aaou toi'tov, Ka6 Tots oicriv 
avTuiv ^apecos vJKOi'o-ai', Kai 
TOt'S 6(j)9aXpov^ eKappvcrav, 
pTj 7roT€ tScucri TOis 6(f>6aXp.oi<s, 
Kal Tois woriv ttKOWwcri, Kai 
Trj KapSia (rwtoo"t Kai €7rt- 
(TTpexpwcrij Kal laa-opai avTOVi 

B. Free Versions of the LXX. in Acts. 

Acts i. 20. 

yiypairrai yap ev /3l/3X(^ 
ij^aA/AwV yevTj^TjTO) 1^ eVavAts 
aijToG eprjpo^ Kal p.r] ecTTOi o 
KaTOiKWi' ev aiJTy, Kat • Tr]V 
eTri(TKOTri]v avrov AapeTw 

Acts ii. 17-21. 

17. Kai eo-Tat e'v Tats eo-xaTats 
TjpepaLS, Aeyet 6 ^eos, e'Kxeto 
dirh Tou TTvevpaTo^ poi' em 


Psalms Ixviii. 26. 

y€V')]9Ti]T(i} rj eVaiiAis ai'Twv 
ijpypwpevrj, Kai. ev tois 0"K7y- 
vw/xacriv aiVwv //.^ cVto) o 


Joel ii. 28-32. 

Ktti ecTTai p.€Ta ravra koi cK^f w 
d—o TO? TTvei'/xaTos pov eTri 



TTacrav aapKa, Kal Trpoc^r^rei'- 
(Tova-iv ol viol vjxwv Kal at 
OvyaTepe^ vfxwv, Kal ol veavt- 
(TKOt ii/iwv ojoacrets oxpovrac, 
Kal ol TrpecrjSvTepoL vfiijjv 
IvvTCviois ivvTrvLaa-O-qcrovTai ' 

18. Kixt ye CTTi tov'S Soi'Aot^s fiov 

Kai cTTi Tas Soi'Aas fxov ev 
Tais i^jLiepats e/cetVats eK^^tw 
aTTo TOTJ TTveuyuaros /iov, Kat 

19. xat Swcroj repara ev tm ovpavco 

avu) Kat a-i]fj.€ia cTrt t^s y^s 
KaTb), atfia Kai irvp Kat aTfitSa 


20. o 7yAtos ix€Ta(TTpa<fjyj(r€rai ei's 

CTKOTOS Kal 1^ ctcAtji'?^ €ts alp.a, 
irplv iXOelv ijpepav Kvp'iov 
Trjv fxeydX7]y Kal eTrtc^avvy. 

21. Kal e'crrai iras os eui/ ctti- 

KaXk(TrjTaL to 6Vo/xa Kvpiov 


TTuaai' crapKa, Kat Trpo(f)rjTev- 
(Tovwiv 01 vtoi vfiMV Kal at 
BvyaTep^s vfJLwv, Kal ot Trpe- 
(rlSvT€pot v/iMV evvTri/ia cwtt- 
vtacr^rytroi'Tai, /<at ot veavtcrKot 
vfiwi' opacrets oxj/ovTat • 

29. Kat cTTt TOt'S Soi'Aois /xof Kat 

tVt Ttis SovAas «i' Tatv r)//€/3ats 
cKetVafj cK^ew aTTo tou jri-ei'- 
//aros p-ov • 

30. Kat SwcrttJ repara ev ovpavw, 

Kal €7rt T/js y'»/s at/xa Kat 7r?p 
Kat drfitSa KaTrvov. 

31. 6 vjAtos p.€Ta(rTpa(f>ii'j<TeTat eis 

CTKOTOS Kat ■)} u-eX'i'jvy) €('« a//Lia 
TT/jtv kXOelv TTyv ■i]jxkpav Kvpiov 
TTji' peydXrji' Kal kir f-fiavrj. 

32. Kat eWat ttus os edi/ €7rt- 

KaXearjrat to oro/xa Kvptov 

Acts iii. 22, 23 (cf. vii. 37). 

22. Mwuo-)js /x€v etTrei/ oVt —pocfi'f'jTrjX' 

vfitv di'a(rT'/ja-€t Ki'ptos o ^ebs 
€K Twv aoeAc^wv vp.wv ws 
e/x6 • avTOu aKowecr^e KaTa 
Trai^Ta oo"a av XaXy'jcrif Trpo<i 

23. ecTTat Se ivaxra 'if'V)(ij lyTts ui' 

/X7y uKovcry too 7rpocf)iJTOv 
CKetvov i^oXeOpevB'fjcreTat ck 
ToC Aaou. 

Deut. xviii. 15 fE. 

15. Trpo(f)7']Ty]U eK twv dScAt/jcui' (roi' 

(OS e/xe di'ao-Tvyo-£t o"ot KVptos 
6 deo'i (jov, ai'Tou d-Kor- 

16. KaTa TravTa oo"a yirijiru) Tvapa 

Kvptov . . . 
19. Kat 6 dvOpiDTTOS OS eai' pij 
dKovay ocra dv AaAvyo")/ 6 
7rpo(^7yT>ys CKttvos €7ri to") 
ovojuaTt pov^ eyw eKStKvycroj 

£^ aUTOV. 

Lev. xxiii. 29. 
crtTat e'v avry ry yptpf^ TavTy 

l^oXodp€v6y(T€Tat €K TO I' Aaoi' 



Acts iii. 25. 

V/UiS €(7T€ Ot viol TCOl' TTpO- 

ijjrirwv Kal rrj^ SLaOi'jKip Tys 
6 ^€0S SiedeTO Trpos toi'S 
Trarepas vjxow, Aeycuv tt/jos 
' h-jSpaan • Kat Iv toj a-Trepjxari 
crov tvXoyr]9fj<TOVTai Tracrat 
at Trarpial rrjs yv}?. 

Acts vii. 3. 
/<at eiTrev Trpbs ai'rov • e^eXOe 
eK ttJs yijs crov Kat ti]s 
o'uyyei'etas crov, Kal 8evpo et? 

TTyy yTji' vjv ai' crot 


Acts vii. 6, 7. 
cAdAiycrev 8e ourcus o ^eo9 oVt 
ecrrat to cnrepixa avTOv irap- 
oiKov ev yiy dAAorpta, Kat 
SofAwcroi'O'ti' ax'TO Kat kukoj- 
crovcriv iTi] rerpaKoa-ia * 

Kat TO eOi'OS <j)MV SovXevcrovcriv 
KpLvoi eyw, 6 ^eos etVev, Kaf 
/xcTot TavTtt l^eAeucroi'Tat kui 
AaTpetVoi'crtv /xot ev tw tottw 


Acts vii. 32. 
eyw 6 ^ebs tcof Trarepoiv orox', 
6 deo'i 'K(ipaaji koI ItraaK 
Kal 'IaKa>f3. evrpofjLO'i Se 
yei'o/xevos JMwvcri^s otjk eroA/xa 

Acts vii. 33, 34. 
33. eiVev 6e atVu) 6 KvpLOS ■ A?0"ov 

TO VTToSl^pLa TtOJ' TToScOV (TO I', 

Gen. xxii. 18. 

Kat eveuAoy7/^-;/o-oi'Tai ei/ tw 
(T-kpjxaTL (Tov irdvTa ra Wvi) 
T7/S yvjs, di/^ wv VTnjKOV(Ta<i 

Gen. xii. 1. 
Kttt etVe KvpLOS Tw ' Appap. ' 
e^eXde €k tv}s yv]s crov Kat €k 
TTj'i (Tvyyeveia'i croi' Kat 6K 


Kal 8evpo €is T>)v y^Ji' 'i]v dv 

0"0t Sct^O). 

Gen. XV. 13, 14. 

13. Kat ippedi] Trpos "AfSpap.- 

yu'WCTKUiv yvwcry oVt wapoiKov 
eo-Tai TO cnrepp.a crov iv yy 
ovK tSta, Ktti SovAojcrovo'tv 
avTous Kat KaKW(TOV(riv avTovs 
Kal TaTTiLvwcrovcrtv avTOVS 
TeTpttKocria eri]. 

14. TO Se Wvo<i (5 eav SovAevcrojcrt 

KptvQ iyw • jLieTa Se TavTa 
e^eAevcrovTai S8e /x€Ta utto- 


Exod. iii. 6. 
Kat eiVev • eyw et'/at 6 ^605 tou 
irarpos crov, 6eo^ '^A/Spaap, Kat 
6eo<i 'IcraaK Kal $ebs 'laKiufS. 
(LTrea-Tpeipe Se Mwvcrv}? to 
TrpocruiTTOv avTOv' evXa/Seiro 
yap Karep-fSXiij/aL ei'ioTriov tov 

Exod. iii. 5, 7-10. 

5. 6 Se eiire • /xt) eyytcnys wSe • 
Arcrat to vTroSrjpa €K tcov 



6 yap T0/70S e<^ w ecrT?/Kas 
yrj dyta Icttlv. 

34. iSwv €tSov TrjV kuk-mctu' toi' 

Aaou /XOU TOti €V AtyUTTTW, 

Kat Tou (TTevayjxov avTOv 
rJKOvcra, koI KarejSrjv k^eXk- 
crdat aiVous ' Kat vvv Seu^o 

aTTOcrret'/Voj ere etV A'iyv~Tov. 

Acts vii. 42, 43. 

42. ecTTpexpei' 5e 6 ^eos /cat Trap- 

er5wKei' ai'iTOws Aar/aevetv rfj 
(TTpaTt^ TOU ovpavou, Kadcj'i 
yeypaTTTai kv fii(iX«) rm> 
Trpocftr^Toiv ' /iij (Tcfmyca Kai 
dvcrtas TTpocrriveyKaTe fioi erij 
TcacrepaKOVTa ev ttj ipi'^pao, 
otKOS l(TpaT]X; 

43. Kai tti-eAaySere XYyi' (TKijifrjv 

TOiJ MoAb;^ K'at TO au-Tpov 

ToC veOU PofKJid, TOUS TVTTOll? 

oi's liroLijcraTi TrpocrKvveiv 
avTOi';. Kcii. fieroiKuo vp.a.'i 
e~€i<€Li'a. ^a/SuXCjios. 

Acts vii. 49, 50. 
49. 6 ox'pavds piot Opovoi, Kai i) yvy 

VTrOTToSlOV TWl" TToSwV /ZOl' ' 

TTOtov otKOV oiKoBop^yja-iri /xo/, 
Aeyet Kuptos, i) Tt's totto^ Tvy>,- 
Kara—aro'CdJs' pov : 

TToSwv crov, 6 yap tottos ev w 
cru eo-TT^Kas y^J dyta e'crTi. . . . 

7. erTre 8e Kvpto^ 7rpo<s Mwixri^v • 


K-ai Tvjs Kpavy-qs auTwi' aKi'jKoa 
ttTTO Twv epyoStoj/vTcuv • ot^Sa 
yap Ti]v dSiVvp aiJTwv, 

8. /cat KarefSi^v e^eXkcrOai avTOV<i 

fK ;>(etpos Twv AtyvTTTtwv 
Kat e^ayayeti/ avTOUS ck t^s 
yT^S €K€tv)/s, Kat etcrayayetv 
avTOvs ets yTyi/ dya^'^i/ Kat 
—oXXt'jV, . . . 
10. Kat vvv 8€vpo aTTOCTTeiAw <re 
Trpos ^apao) /Saa-iXea Ai- 
yiJTrTOU, Kat e^a^eis tov Aadv 
/Aou Tovs t'toi's 'larpaijX Ik 


Amos V. 25-27. 

25. pi) (TcfydyLa Kai Ova-cwi Trpocr- 

i)V€yKaT€ p.0L, oTkos 'Io-paj;A, 
Tecra-apaKovTa eTt] iv Ty 
ep-qpM ; 

26. Kat dveXd/Sere Tvyv aKrjvrp' to? 

i\Io Ao;)( Kttt TO d(TTpov TOV 6eov 
vp-wv ^FaLcfidv, Tovs ti'ttoi's 
ai'Twt' oi'S €7roii]a-aT€ iavTocs • 

27. Kut peToiKtw vyuds eVeKetva 

Aapao-Koii, Aeyet Krptos, 6 ^eos 
o iravTOKpdrwp di-opa ai'To'j. 

Isaiah Ixvi. 1,2. 
oiTOJS Aeyet Ki'pto^ • o orpai'os 
poi; dpovos, Kai 1} yvy i-tto- 


OLKov oiKoSopycreTe p.OL ; Kat 
TTOtov TOTTO? TTys KaTaTTamcwv 
po i; ; 


50. ov)(l I'j X^'P /^ou eTTOujirei' TaCTa 
irdyra ; 

Acts xiii. 22. 
Kai fj.era<TT7'](Tas avrhv I'/yetpev 
Tov AaueiS aurors eis jSacrikea, 
w Kttt etVev fJiapTi)py](ras ' 
evpov AavetS tov tou 'lecrcrai, 
avSpa Kara Tr]v\ KapSiav /xor, 
OS TToi'/yo-et Travra ra OeX'tj- 
fxard p,ov. 

Acts xiii. 34. 
oTt Se di'ecTTjja-ev aiJTov eK 
vcKpwv p,i]KkTi fiiXXovra vtto- 
(TTp€<f)eiv €ts 8ta(fi6opdv, owtoj? 
eLpyjKev otl Stocro) v/aiv ra 
oo"ta Aau£t8 Tcl Trtfnd. 

Acts xiii. 41. 
i'Sere, ot Kara^poi'vyrat, Kai 
6avp,d(TaT€ Kttt d(f)avt(r6r]T€, 
on epyov ipyd^opat, eyw ev 
rats ry/jiepdts vp-Qv, epyov o 
ov /x'^ TrLcrT€vcn]T€ eav Tts £k- 
8u]y?jTat vp,lv. 

Acts xiii. 47. 
oi'tw yap li'TeraArat 7;yMtv o 
Kvpios • reOeiKd ue eh ^ws 
t^vcuv Tou eivac ere ets crwTi]- 
piav ews eo";(aTOi' t)}s y>/S. 

Acts XV. 16-18. 

16. /xcTci rarra dvacrrpeij/o) Kai 

dvoi.Ko8opt](T(o rt]V CTK'qvqv 
AareiS T-!)v TreTTTiDKViai', Kai 
TO. KaTicrTpap,p,iva aurvjs di- 

OtKo8ojlX^O"W Kttt dvOp9w<TiO 


17. oTTojs av iK^t^Ti/ja-dicriv oi Kara- 

"2. rravra ydp Tuvra eTroirjarev iy 
Xeip jiov, Kai €(TTiv kp.d irdi'Ta 
ravTa, Xkyei Kvpios . . . 

Psalms Ixxxviii. 21. 

evpov AautS tov SouAov pov, 
ev eXeet aytw e^/Dtcra auTov. 

Isaiah Iv. 3. 
. . . etaaKovcraTe fJt.ov, Kai ^'i](Te- 
rai ev aya^ots '>] ^^VXV ^/^<^v, 
Kai 8ia6ii](TopaL vplv Biady^Kip' 
a.uijVLOv, TO. •crta Aai;(.8 Tct 

Hab. i. 5. 

tScTC 01 Karacfipovr^ral Kai eiri- 
fSXexpare, Kai 6avp.dcrare dav- 
pdaia Kai dcftavLcrdrjTe' 8toTt 
epyov eyo) epyd^opat ev Tuis 
i]p.epats I'piov o ov ^t) TTLcrrer- 
(Ti]Te edv Tt9 eKSu^yrjraL. 

Isaiah xlix. 6. 
. . . tSov SeSiOKa ere et's 8ia- 
OqKip' yevovi, els ^cos edvwv, 
TOV elva'i (re eis crcuT»;pt'tti' ews 
ecr^aTOV ttJs yrjS. 

Amos ix. 11, 12. 

11. ev ry i]pep^ eKe'ivrj dracrTvyorw 

Ti]v (TKTjvqv Aai'tS Ti]v Tre- 
TTTdiKViav, Kai dvoiKo8op,i^(r(i) 
ra TreTTTWKOTa avTrj?, Kai ra 
Karecr Kap.peva avrrjs dvacTT'q- 
cro), Kai dvotKoSop.7yo-a) avrijv 
Ka6^cjS al rjpepaL Tou aauvos, 

1 2. OTTWS eK^r]Wj<Tco(rLV ot KaToi- 


Aot7ro6 Twv avOjiwirwv tov Xolttoi twv dvOpwiroiv, kuI 

Kvpiov, Koi Trdvra rd Wvi] irdvra to. eOvi] ecfi' ovs l~i- 

€4>' ovs €7rtKe/cA?/Tai rh ovofid KiKX-qrai to ovojxd fxov eV 

fj.ov €7r avTOVS, avrovs, Aeyet Kvpios 6 iroidv 

18. Aeyei Kvptos Trottuv raCra 
yj'WCTTa aTT atojvos. 

iravra Taura. 

Acts xxiii. 5. Exod. xxii. 28. 
e<f)i^ T£ 6 riavAos • OVK ySetv, 

dSeXcfiOL, 0T6 ea-rlv ap;;^iepeis ' ^eovs ou KUKoXoyi^creis, Kal dp- 

ykypainaL yap on dp-x^ovra ;>^0VTa tov Aaou o-ou ov KaKws 

Tou Aao{i crov ovk epets KaKws. epets. 

It will be noticed that, with one exception, viii. 32, 33, the 
above quotations aU occur in speeches, and all except three came 
in the first half of the book. It now becomes necessary to study 
the sixteen free quotations more closely, following the guidance 
of Dr. Swete, who thus distinguishes the causes which may have 
produced variations from the standard text of the LXX. : ^ "It 
may be due to (i.) loose citation, or to (ii.) the substitution of a 
gloss for the precise words which the writer professes to quote, 
or to (iii.) a desire to adapt a prophetic context to the circum- 
stances under which it was thought to have been fulfilled, or to 
(iv.) the fusing together of passages drawn from difl'erent con- 
texts. Of the variations which cannot be ascribed to one or 
other of these causes, some are (v.) recensional, whilst others are 
(vi.) translational, and imply an independent use of the original, 
whether by the Evangelist, or by the author of some collection 
of excerpts which he employed." 

(i.) The following variations may be ascribed to free citation, 
natural in an age when modern aids to study were not available.^ 
The last two clauses of ii. 17 are inverted ; dvco and Kcirco are in- 
serted in ii. 19 ; vii. 3 is shortened by the substitution of koI Sevpo 
for Kol i/c Tov otKov rov irarpo'i; aov ; in vii. 32 6 6eo^ W^paafi 
Kal laaaK koX laK(o/3 is read for o 0€o<; 'A. Kal 6. 'I. Kal 6. 

1 Int. p. 394, 
* See Sanday in Oxford Studies in the Synoptic Problem, pp 16-19. 


'I. ; 1 in vii. 33, 34, Exod, iii. 5, 7-10 is shortened considerably, 
and et9 AijuTrrov takes the place of Trpo? ^apaoo (BaaCkea 
AuyvTrrou ', in vii. 50 ov^l ?) %etp fxou iTTolrjaev ravra iravra ', is 
read for iravra jap ravra iiroi'qaev rj %e//3 /j.ou ; in xiii. 34 
StaO^KTjv alwvLov is omitted and hiaOrjaofxai replaced by hcaw ; 
in xiii. 41, Hab. i. 5 is shortened and modified. 

(ii.) There seem to be no clear cases of glosses made by the 
writer unless perhaps the change of eavrol<; into irpoaKwelv 
avroU in vii. 43. 

(iii.) In i. 20 avrwv of the LXX. is changed to avrov to apply 
to Judas, and iv avrfj then takes the place of eV rot 9 o-KT]i'cofj.aaiv 
avToyv, which is no longer applicable. The repetition of Kal 
7rpo(j)rjrev(Tov(Ti in ii. 18 makes the prophecy more appropriate 
to the events. In vii. 43 Ba/3v\o)vo<i is put for Aa/xacr/coi} to 
bring the quotation into accord with the history of the Jews ; 
while in xxiii. 5 ap-)(^ovra is substituted for the less suitable 
apxovra'?, though the MSS. of the LXX. vary, 

(iv.) The fusing of two or more passages plays an important 
part in the quotations of Acts. In ii. 17 the prophecy from Joel 
is introduced by ev rat? ia-^drat'i rjfiepai^;, taken from Isa. ii. 
2 ; iii. 22, 23 is a conflation of Deut. xviii. 15, 16, 19 and Lev. 
xxiii. 29 ; iii. 25 is a conflation of Gen. xxii. 18 with Gen. xii. 3, 
with possibly a reminiscence of Ps. xxi. 28 ; vii. 6, 7 is a conflation 
of Gen. XV. 13, 14 with Exod. ii. 22 and iii. 12 ; in vii. 34 we have 
roD crrevay/xov avrov rjKovcra instead of ri}? fcpavyfj<; avrow 
cLKrjKoa, probably owing to the influence of Exod. ii. 24 ; a 
remarkable combination is found in xiii. 22, where Ps. Ixxxix. 
21, 1 Sam. xiii. 14, Isa. xliv. 28 make a composite quotation ; ^ 
while XV. 16-18 is a conflation of Amos ix. 11-12 ^vith Jer. xii. 15.^ 

^ Lk. XX. 37 has LXX. formula. Perhaps Exod. ii. 24b, r^s 8iadrjK-i]s 
avToO T^s irpbs 'A. Kal 'I. Kal '1., has influenced Acts vii. 32, seeing that Exod. 
ii. 24 a has influenced vii. 34; see below, under section (iv.). 

2 See 1 Clem, xviii., where the first two passages are combined. It is 
generally supposed that Acts and 1 Clem, are both dependent on some collec- 
tion of Messianic proof-texts. See R. Harris, Exp., November 1906, " The Use 
of Testimonies in the early Christian Church " ; MoSatt, Int. pp. 23-25. 

3 Swete, p. 399. 


(v.) The quotations in Acts show the usual New Testament 
tendency in that they follow the A text of the LXX. as against 
the B.^ The subjoined list gives the readings in which Acts agrees 
with A ; the B readings are added in brackets. For the sake of 
completeness we also give the minor variants in favour of the 
A text in the quotations already treated under A (ii.) above, 

ii. 17 ewTTUioci {ivvirvca), ii. 18 Kai ye [Kal), eVt Ta<? hovKa'^ 
/jLov (eVl Ta<; SovXa'i), vii. 40 e'/c 7J}<? AIjiitttou [i^ AlyvTTTOv) , 
vii. 43 TOL'9 rv'TTOv; (tou? Tvirov; avTwv), vii. 49 fiot 6povo<; 
{/.lov 6p6vo<;), viii. 32 rov Kelpovro^ avrov [tov K€ipovTo<;), xiii. 
41 €KhiriyrjTai vjuv (B om. vpblv), xiii. 47 reOeiKd ae eU 0w? 
[SeScoKci ere ei? Biad/jKrjp yevovi, et? ^co?) XV. 16 KaTearpap/Jieva 
with A^ [KareaKappeva), XV. 17 oTrcu? av (ottco?), tov Kupiov 
(B om.), xxiii. 5 ovk ip6i<; «:a«:a»? [ov KaKa)<; ipei<i). In vii. 
49 Acts (except in B) agrees with Isa. Ixvi. 1 B (?} Be yrj) 
against A {koI i) yrj) . 

(vi.) In one instance Acts seems at first sight to be nearer 
the Massoretic text than the LXX., namely, iii. 25 = Gen. xxii. 18, 
where LXX. renders Heb. f"iNn "'['hi S3 by iravTa ra eOvT], 
while Acts with its irdaai, at Trarpial r?;? 7^/9 has {'"isjn repre- 
sented. But it is better to suppose that such passages as Gen. 
xii. 3, TTacrai al (f)v\al r?;? 7^9, or Ps. xxi. 28, irdcrai al Trarpial 
TMv edvoiv, have influenced the quotation in Acts, than to assume 
that the writer has any acquaintance with the original Hebrew, 
or is making an independent translation from an Aramaic 
version of the speech. 

A. In the Speeches. — The less direct references to the LXX. informal 
are so numerous that any attempt to point them out in detail ^e'mirii-'""'^' 
must be reserved for the commentator. Many informal quotations scenoes.and 

'' -■■ allusions. 

and allusions are distinguished in Westcott and Hort's text by 
the employment of uncials, but even after their careful work 
gleanings remain for their successors. In the present connection 
the use of the Old Testament in the speeches of Acts, apart 
from formal citations, has a twofold interest, in that it (i.) 

1 J bid. p. 395. 


confirms the results reached in the previous section, (ii.) throws 
light on the author's method of composition and the sources he 
may have had at his disposal. 

(i.) It is clear from the loose manner in which the allusions 
are woven into the text that it would be hazardous to use them 
as a source from which to draw textual conclusions ; but it is 
legitimate to use the evidence, such as it is, for the purpose of 
confirming the results already attained. The first three headings 
under which Dr. Swete accounts for variations from the standard 
text of the LXX. do not apply here. The fourth cause, confla- 
tion of diSerent passages, is seen clearly at work. Thus Acts 
iii. 13 6 ^eo9 ^A/Spaa/J, koI 'Icraaic koI 'la/cco^, o 6eo^ row 
Trarepeov rjixwv, iSo^aaev rov nralha avrov, is formed from Exod. 
iii. 6 iyco elfic o ^eo? rov Trarpo^; aou, Oeo'i 'A^paa/x koX 6eo<; 
'IcraaK kol 6eo<; 'laKciojS (cf. 1 Kg. xviii. 36)+Isa. Iii. 13 o 
Trai? /jLov . . . So^aa-Oijaerai. The following conflations among 
others are also worthy of attention : Acts ii. 24 Xvaw? Ta<; 
wSii/a? Tov 6avdTov = V&. xvii. 5, etc. + Job xxxix. 2 (see below) ; 
vii. 5 = Gen. xii. 7 + xvii. 8 + Deut. ii. 5 ; vii. 10 = Gen. xxxix. 
4, 21 +xli. 40, 41 +Ps. civ. 21 ; x. 35, 36 = Ps. xiv. 2 + cvi. 20 + 
Isa. Hi. 7. 

Passing on to recensional variations, we note a few instances 
where the A text of the LXX. is followed against the B. If iv. 
24 (cf. xiv. 15) is based on Exod. xx. 11, the addition of koX ti-jv 
dakaaaav agrees with A (and B'^^ '"^') against B, but the phrase 
occurs also in Ps. cxlv. 6. In vii. 30 eV (f)\oyl irvpo^; agrees with 
Exod. iii. 2 A, B having iv irvpl (pXoyof;. The formation of the 
sentence in vii. 14, 15 leads to the conclusion that it is drawn from 
Deut. X. 22, where A gives the number that went down to Egypt 
as 75 (B gives 70, but cf. Gen. xlvi. 27, Exod. i. 5, which have 75). 
However, in xvii. 25 the phrase Bi.Sou<; . . . ttvoj'jv recalls the 
B text of Isa. xlii. 5 (where A has 8ov<; ttvo/jv. The passage is 
known to the author of Acts, cf. xxvi. 17 with Isa. xlii. 7.) ^ 

^ In V. 10 the rare word eK\j/vxei.i> occurs — ^wecrev de Trapax/'^wa Trpos toi's 
irodas avrov Kal i^^ipv^fv ; cf. V. 4 and xii. 23. Possibly it may have been 


Finally, there are three passages in which an independent 
translation is perhaps to be postulated. 

1. The curious phrase Xvaa^i Ta<i (i}8iva<i tov davdrov occurs 
in ii. 24.^ In the LXX., e.g. 2 Sam. xxii. 6, Ps. xvii. 5, cxiv. 3, 
0DSlve<; davdrov translates n]D "hyn (probably = " cords of 
death "). As \vcra<i suits the meaning " cords " better than 
" pains," it has been suggested that the phrase goes back to an 
independent knowledge of the Hebrew, or an Aramaic version 
of Peter's speech. But an explanation from the LXX. only will 
suffice, that the phrase is a conflation of coSi/^e? davdrov with 
Job xxxix. 2 rjpL6fi7}(ra<; Be fMi]va<i avroiv 7rX.?;pet<? roKerov 
avrwv, oihlva^ Se avrSiv €\vaa<;. 

2. In ii. 30 = Ps. cxxxi. 11, Acts has e'/c Kaprrov rr]<: 6a(f)vo^ 
avrov icaOiaai eirl rov Opovov avrov, which is an independent 
version, diverging both from the Hebrew and Greek texts. 
While the possibility of the verse having come through the 
medium of Aramaic cannot be excluded, a free quotation from 
memory is a more likely explanation of the variation. 

3. The well-known Messianic passage Ps. cxvii. 22 is quoted 
in iv. 11 in a unique form — ovr6<; eanv o \ido^ 6 i^ovdevrjOeU v(f)' 
v/uLMV roiv olKoSoficov, <yevop,€VO<; e/? KetpaXrjv ycovla^;. This is 
quite a different version from that of the LXX. — XlOov ov uTve- 
SoKifxaaav at olKo8ofjbovvr€<;, ovro<; iyev/jdr) etV Ke<^a\r]v ycovia^ — 
which is repeated in Matt. xxi. 42 ; Mark xii. 10 ; Lk. xx. 17 ; 
1 Pet. ii. 7 ; Barn. vi. 4. Now in Lk. xx. 17 the author foUows 
Mark, whereas here he has an independent translation. The 
variation seems more than can be accounted for by a lapse of 
memory. It should be noted that the version of Acts is even 
further removed from the original Hebrew than is the LXX. ; 
however i^ovBevelv is used as well as drroSoKi/xd^eLv by the 
LXX. to translate dno. 

As these three passages all occur in the Petrine speeches of 

suggested by its use in Judges iv. 21 A Kal e^^fv^ev, of Sisera's death. Cf. 
Judges V. 27 dva fj.i(Tov tGjv ttoBuiv avTrjs . . . ^wedev, 

^ Also in Polyc. i. 2 in this form Xvaas rds liStcas rov q.Sov. 


the opening chapters, it is legitimate, though not necessary, to 
interpret the first two in the light of the conclusions reached 
with reference to the last, and to suppose that the source used 
by Luke is responsible for the peculiarities of the text. In this 
case the speeches in question are not simply the free compositions 
of the writer.! 

(ii.) Two of the speeches of Acts require special treatment in 
regard to their use of the Old Testament. Stephen's speech at 
Jerusalem in chap. vii. and Paul's at Antioch in chap. xiii. are 
little more than centos of Old Testament quotations and allusions. 
They recall the past history of the Jews and are naturally couched 
in biblical language.^ 

Taking the speeches as a whole, there is a clear distinction 
between the first and second half of the Acts in respect to the 
influence of the Old Testament ; in the later chapters it is far 
less marked. For example, Peter's speech to the people at 
Jerusalem in chap. iii. is full of Old Testament allusions, while 
Paul's Jerusalem speech in chap. xxii. has hardly any (Westcott 
and Hort give no uncials at all). The rule is not universally 
carried out ; e.g. in the Areopagus speech, chap, xvii., dehvered 
to an audience supposed to be unfamiliar with the Jewish Scrip- 
tures, there are a number of literary reminiscences — 24 = Exod, 
XX. 11; 25 = Isa. xHi. 5; 26 = Deut. xxxii. 8 (?) ; 31 = Ps. ix. 8. 
Again, some of the utterances put into the mouth of Peter are 
simply strings of LXX. phrases. Two examples may be given : 

1 In xii. 11 e^aTrecTTeiKev 6 Kvpios tqv 6.yye\ov /cat e^eiXaro fie iK xeipos 
'Hpc65oi», there .seems to be a reminiscence of Dan. Theod. iii. 95 Ss d-rriffTeiXev 
t6v dyyeXov avrou Kal i^eiXaro (LXX. ^croiae) rovs :rai5as avrov. This is 
in keeping with the tendency of the N.T. quotations to support Theodotion 
against the LXX. ; see Swete, Int. pp. 48, 395. 

* In these two speeches there are a number of passages where Acts, agree- 
ing with later Jewish tradition, has modified the O.T. records. Thus in vii. 
2 the command comes to Abraham when still in Mesopotamia — Philo and the 
Samaritan Pentateuch have the same tradition ; in vii. 16 Jacob and the 
patriarchs are buried at Sichem in Abraham's tomb (perhaps mere careless- 
ness on the part of the writer) ; in vii. 23, 30 Moses is forty years old when he 
flees to Midian and spends fortj' years there ; in xiii. 21 Saul's reign lasts forty 
years. For further " Midrashic elements " in Stephen's speech see the full 
note in Encycl. Bibl. 4791. 


Deut. xii. 12. 


Acts viii. 
21. OVK eVriv trot yu,epts ovSl KX.rjpo<; 
€v Tw Aoyw toi'toj, ■)) yap 
KapSia (Tov OVK ecrTtv evdela 
evavTt TOV 6eov. 

22. p.eTav6rj(Tov ovv airo rrjs KaKtas 

(TOV Tavrrjs, kuI SerjdrjTi tov 
Kvptov €t apa dcjie6rj(T€TaL croi 
rj e—ivoca T/ys KapSias crov. 

23. eis yap )(^oXi]v -n-LKpias Kal 

a-vvSecTfioi' uSiKtas opw ere 

OVK kcTTLV avTio /xepts ov8e 
KXrjpo^ . . ; cf. xiv. 28. 

Ps. Ixxvii. 37. 
rj 8e KapBia avrCjv ovk evdeia 
fier avTov. 

Jer. viii. 6. 
OVK ecTTiv avdpoiTTOs o jxeravowv 
ttTTo Trj<; KaKca^ avTOV. 

Deut. xxix. 18. 
pi^a (ivdo (f)vovcra ev X°^V '^''^' 


Isa. Iviii. 6. 

Travra cri'i'decr/xoi' aSiKias. 

In X. 14, xi. 8 we have a short version of Ezekiel's protest. 
Acts X. 14. 

6 Se Xlerpos eiirev ' firjSafxois, 
Kvpie, oTi oi'ScTTOTC €cfiayov 


Acts xi. 8. 
etVoi' Se • fii]8apM'i Kvpie, otl 
KOLVov ■)) uKadaprov ovSeTTore 
ela-yjXdev ei's to CTTO/xa p.ov. 

Ezek. iv. 14. 
/cat etVa • firjSafiws, Kvpie 6ee 
Tou IcrpaqX- el t) '/'I'X'/ /J-ov 
ov p^ep-iavTat iv aKadapcria 
Ktti dvrjCTLpaLov Kal drjpid- 
AojTOV Of /3e/3pu)Ka diro ye- 
V€0"€ws ^01! ecus TOV vvv, ov8e 
elcreXi'jXvdev eh to (TTopa p.ov 
Trai' Kpeas ecoAor. 

There is a tendency to represent God or the risen Lord as 
speaking in an Old Testament manner. Thus in chap. xxvi. 
Paul's speech has practically no Old Testament affinities until 
he describes the words of the ascended Jesus. 

Acts xxvi. 

1 5. di'd(Try]di Kal (TTijdt Ittl tous 

TToSas crov. 

16. eis TOVTO yap w(f36y]V (tol, irpo- 

^eLpLcraa-OaL ere vir-qpeT-qv Kal 
p.apTvpa wv T€ ft'Ses pe wv t€ 
o(})6y]a-opac croi. 

Ezek. ii. 1. 
(TT?]6t eirl Tov<s TToSas aov. 


Jer. i. 

17. e^aipov/J.evo'i (re Ik rov Xaov 8. //.era o-ov kyu'i djUTov l^atpd- 

Koi €K TMV iOuwv, ei's ov<i (rOat. ere. 

eyo) dTToo-reAAoj ere avol^ai. 7. ort Trpos Travras oijs eav e^a-rro- 

6(f)6aXnovi avTuiv. crretAa) ere Tropevcnj. 

1 Chron. xvi. 35. 

18. TOi,' eirtcrrpeipaL arro ctkotovs koI e^eXov rjpa<; Ik tmv Wvwv. 

Isa. xlii. 7. 

CIS (f)ws Kai rrj's e^ovcrtas tov 

'Zarava ctti tov diov, rov Aa- 

^eiv ai'.Toi-s act^ea-cv 6.p.apriwv «^«'^«' 6,f,daXp.ohs TvcfyXCiv. 

Kol KXrjpov €v TOts i/yta- ig 

(Tuevois TTicrreL rrj ets eue. / = , v r > 

' '' ' TTOir^crci) aiiTots to ctkotos ets 

Dent, xxxiii. 3, 4. 
TravTe? oi tjyt.aa'p.evoL vtto ras 
\ilpds (TOV . . . KXt^povoplav 
cruvayioyais 'luKwfS. 

Compare also ix. 15 = Jer. i. 10, xviii. 9 = Gen. xxvi. 24. 

Throughout the first part of the book the speeches have a 
decidedly Old Testament ring. That this is not so much the 
case in the second part may be due to the fact that the -writer 
was relying less on his own powers of composition, and that he 
had at his disposal reminiscences, written or otherwise, of the 
actual words used. 

B. In the Narrative. — The distinction between speeches and 
narrative must be carefully observed. As is well known, to com- 
pose speeches appropriate to the occasion and put them into 
the mouth of the various characters was a recognised practice 
among the historians of antiquity. The existence of a large 
amount of traditional Old Testament material in the speeches 
of Acts may likewise be conceded without prejudice to the 
literary honesty of our author. But such a latitude cannot be 
transferred without question to the narrative. If we find 
descriptions of events moulded to any serious extent on the 
LXX., the character of a conscientious historian claimed in 
the prologue to the Gospel is considerably impaired. 


An instance will show what is meant. The story of the 
meeting of Philip with the Ethiopian eunuch seems pritna facie 
to be a straightforward record of actual events. Yet it may be 
plausibly maintained that the narrative has been built up out 
of hiats contained in Zephaniah and other parts of the Old 

Acts viii. 

26. dvdcrTr]6L Kal Tropevov Kara 

fj-err^^ufSpLav eirl rr]i' o8ov tjjv 
KarafSaLi'ovcrav ctTTo 'lepov- 
(rakrjfi ets Fa^av, avTi] eo"Ttv 

27. Kal dvao-ra? eiropevdr] Kai 

lSov di'Tjp AWiOxj/ ei'vov^os 
Svvd(TTi]'i KavSaKYj^; fSacn- 
XLcr<Tr]<; AWlottwv, os Vyv eiri 
Tracny? t^s yd^y]<i auTTjs, [os] 
eXijXvOet TTpo(TKvvrj(TW\' eis 

39. TTvevfxa Kvpiov rjpiTaaiv tov 

Zeph. ii. 4. 
( = Hebrew r^ n^p) 

"A^cuTos (cf. Acts viii. 40 4>i- 

AlTTTTOS eVpedlj €tS A^COTOl') 

p.icn]pl3pias lKpi^rj(TiTai . . . 
Vd^u. Su^pTraa-fievr] ecrrat. 

Zeph. ii. 11, 12. 
( = Hebrew njni ^V-i D^n) 

Kal Trpo(rKvvi^aova-LV avrw 


irda-ai at VTJcroi twv eOviov. 
Kal vfjieis, At^607r£5, rpavfia- 
Tiai po[JL(f)atas fJ-ov ecrre. 

iii. 10. 


TTpoaSe^OfMai Iv 8u(nrapix€vois 
fjiov, OLcrovaiv Ovcrtas /^toi. 
Cf. Ps. Ixvii. 32. Isa. Ivi. 3. 

iii. 4. 
01 77po({>rJTaL avrrjs TTvev/xaTO- 
<ji6poi. Cf. 1 Kg. xviii. 12, 
2 Kg. ii. 16: Ezek. iii. 12; 
viii. 3. 

Note the double meaning of yd^a, " Gaza" and "treasure" ; also 
the possibihty that €vvovxo<; and SvvdaTr]<; represent the same 
Hebrew word, since LXX. translates d">~id by both words, see 
Jer. xli. (xxxiv.) 19, The point at issue is, whether this is 
merely a natural colouring of the narrative by Old Testament 
language, or whether the facts themselves have been put together 
out of hints contained in the Old Testament. As the passage 















considered in isolation hardly warrants a definite conclusion, a 
list of passages is given where it is possible that similar influences 
may have been at work. Where the bare references are given, 
it must be taken as implying that the parallels seem of little 
importance. It will be understood that this list might be 
enlarged considerably. 

= Tob. xii. 19, see Simpson in Charles, Apocrypha, i. 234. 

= Isa. xxix. 6. 

= Isa. xxviii. 11, cf. 1 Cor. xiv. 21. 

= Exod. xxxii. 28, see Zeitsclirift f. N.T. Wiss. (1913), pp. 94-6.1 

= Isa. XXXV. 6 : Leaping of the lame as a sign of the Messianic 

= Deut. XV. 4. 
= Jos. vii. 1. 
viii. 26, 27 = Zeph. ii, 4, etc., see above. 

viii. 39 =1 Kg. xviii. 12, 2 Kg. ii. 16, Ezek. iii. 12, viii. 3, Zeph. iii. 4, 
Bel 36. 
ix. 10-12 = 1 Sam. iii. 4, Isa. xlii. 6. 
ix. 18 =Tob. xi. 12, see above, p. 76. 
ix. 38 £E. =Num. xxii. 5-41. 

The parallels here are worked out in detail by Krenkel, 
Josephus unci Lukas, pp. 194-6. A specimen is given here with 
the similarities of language underlined. 

X. 19, 20. enrcv to Trvivfia avno Num. xxii. 20, Kal rjXdev 6 d^vs 

. . . avacTTots . . . Kal iropevov irpos BaAaa/x vvktos Kat 

(Tvv avrol's eiirev avrio, ei KaXeaat ere 

X. 21. Tii rj al.TLa 8l' i]v Trapecrre ; Trapetcrtv ol avdpwTrot ovTOi, 

X. 33. Trdpea/Jiev avao-ra? aKoXovdrjcrov avrols' 

xi. 14. lierpov, os XaXt'ja-ei, pq- dXXa to pi]p.a o edu AaAjJcrw 

paTa Trpos ere. Trpos ere, tovto Tronjcreis. 

^ Three thousand were added to the Church in one day, just as 3000 
members of the Church in the wilderness perished in one day. A faint vein 
of reminiscence of the story of Moses is possibly to be detected in Acts i.-vii. 
The story of Pentecost in Acts ii. is generally acknowledged to owe something 
to Jewish legends of the giving of the Law on jMount Sinai. The forty days in 
Acts i. 4 in connection with the Mount of Ohves in i. 12 recall Moses' forty days 
in the mount, Exod. xxiv. 18. The apostles in Acts vi., hke Moses in Exod. 
xviii., appoint helpers to share with them the burden of administration. Christ 
is depicted as the new Moses in Acts iii. 22, cf. vii. 35 ; see Heb. iii., where the 
comparison is made exphcit. 


The case for direct influence would be strengthened if the 
order of the passages in Acts corresponded in any way to that in 
Numbers, but on the contrary they are picked out arbitrarily 
from all parts of chaps, ix.-xi. in order to make the required 
parallels. It is probable that nothing more is demonstrated 
than that these chapters are composed in a strongly LXX. 
style. ^ 

ix. 40 = 2 Kg. iv. 35, cf . Tob. xi. 7. r] Se ijvot^ev roii^ 6(f>da\- 
(xov<i of Acts may be taken from koL ijvoi^ev to TrathdpLov rov<i 
6(f)6a\/j.ov'i of Kings. These are the only passages in the Greek 
Bible where dv. t. ocj^d. is used of a man opening his own eyes 
(but cf. Acts ix. 8). It is used of an opening by some one else, 
2 Kg. vi. 20, Matt. xx. 33, John ix. 10 fi., x. 21, xi. 37, 
Acts xxvi. 18 ; also of God opening his eyes as in 2 Kg. xix. 16, 
Bar. ii. 17, Dan. ix. 18. 

xii. 23 =2 Kg. xix. 35, 2 Mace. ix. 5, 9, see above, p. 75. 
xvi. 14, 16 = 1 Sam. xxviii. 7, 21, 23, see Selwyn, St. Luke the Prophet, 

pp. 50, 51. 
XX. 10 =2 Kg. iv. 34, 1 Kg. xvii. 23, see Selwyn, pp. 58 ff. 

The parallels are by no means close, as will be seen by an examina- 
tion of the passages. 

The majority of these instances are of slight importance. In 
none is the resemblance so striking as in the verses of Zephaniah 
with which we started. 

It appears from the foregoing that the LXX. has been Con- 
an important factor in the composition of some of the speeches 
of Acts, but that its influence in moulding the narrative has 
been slight, except in chaps, viii.-xii. Now viii., ix. 31-43, 
x. 1-xi. 18, xii. form a well-defined section, which may be termed 
the Acts of Peter and Philip. There can be little doubt that 
Luke regarded these chapters as genuine history, but it may well 

^ It is hard to see what purpose, except that of humour, is served when 
Krenkel adduces Num. xxii. 28 Kal ijuoL^ev 6 debs t6 (rrd/xa ttjs buov, in illustra- 
tion of Acts X. 34 dvoi'^as 5^ Uerpos to ffTd/j-a. If veins of reminiscence arc 
sought here, it is better to use Gen. xviii., where the parallels run consecutively ; 
cf. Acts X. 17, 19, 23-25 vvith Gen. xviii. 2, 3-8, 16, xix. 2. 


be that the tradition had been affected, even to the extent of 
remoulding, by certain passages of the LXX. before it was brought 
to his notice. Other ways in which Luke betrays the influence 
of the LXX. were discussed in the earlier part of the chapter. 
No very definite results were attained, but the investigators of 
other problems of Acts may find the facts as here stated useful 
as criteria by which to test the soundness of their own con- 

^ A complete treatment of the subject would include an extension of the 
inquiry to the third Gospel, which space forbids. All that can be attempted 
is to point out the probable results of such an investigation. It would prob- 
ably be found that (i.) Luke's modifications of the Marcan narrative were 
sometimes dictated by a desire to make it accord more closely with (a) a well- 
known incident of the LXX. or (6) conventional methods of treating a story, 
and that (ii.) the narratives found in Lk. only are more dependent on con- 
ventional material than is the case with the special matter of the other Gospels. 
The following examples will illustrate these positions. 

(i.) (a) In leaving the upper room and proceeding across the Kedron to 
the Mount of Ohves, Christ is represented as consciously fulfilling prophecy 
{to -rrepl ifiov tAos ^x^'* Lk. xxii. 37). The analogy with the experience of 
David, who went along the same path in his flight from Absalom, would strike 
any student of the Old Testament. Resemblances between the two histories 
occur in all four Gospels (cf. e.g. 2 Sam. xv. 14 avdffT-ijre Kal (pvywfxev, with 
John xiv. 31 ^yelpecrde, Ayui/xev iprevdev), but by far the most striking 
parallels are found in the additions made by Luke. See Lk. xxii. 32 f., which 
seems to be modelled on 2 Sam. xv. 20 f. 

Lk. xxii. 2 Sam. xv. 

32. Kal (TV TTore ivKTrp^xpas aT-qpiiXov tovs 20. eincrTpecpov Kai iiriaTpeipov tovs 

dSeXcpovs (Tov. dSe\(poi'S crov fiera aov. . . . 

21. Kal direKpidri 'E^t Tip paaiXe? Kal 

33. 6 de eTrrei' airi^ Kvpie, /xerd crov gj^^^ Zv Kvptos Kal ^-q 6 KvptSi fiov 

'^TOLfios elfii Kal els (pvXaKTjv Kal els ^ /SatrtXeys, Sri els tov tSttov ov idv 

edvaTov Tropeveadai. ^ 5 ^^'.pt^s ^q^^ ^^l ekv els ddvaTov 

Kal idv els ^o^W, Stl ^Ke7 idTai b 

5o0\6j (TOV. 

(6) Two details added by Luke to Mark's account of the end of the cruci- 
fixion (xxiii. 47 f., the " glorifying of God " and the return of the spectators to 
their homes) agree with the end of Enoch's life as described in 2 Enoch (Slavonic 
Enoch) Ixvii. 1-3. " When Enoch had talked to the people, the Lord sent out 
darkness on to the earth, and there was darkness, and it covered those men 
standing and talking with Enoch, and they took Enoch up to the highest 
heaven, where the Lord is ; and he received him and placed him before his 
face, and the darkness went off from the earth, and light came again. And 
the people saw and understood not how Enoch had been taken, and glorified 


God, and found a roll in which was traced : ' the invisible God,' and all went 
to their homes " (Charles' translation'*). 

(ii.) Chaps, i. and ii. are, as is well known, saturated with LXX. words 
and phrases. For instance, the annunciations of the births of John and Jesus 
Christ are modelled on the annunciation of the birth of Samson in Judges xiii., 
as the transcribing of a few verses will show. 

Lk. i. 

11. u(p9T] 8e ai'Tw dyyeXos Kvpiov . . . 
13. etTrei' 5^ ir/jos avrbv 6 477eXos. 
7. Kal ovK Jjv avTols t^kvov, KadoTi rjv 
'EXetcrd/Ser aTetpa. 
31. l5ov (rvXKrifj.\l/r] . . . viov. 
15. Kai olvov Kal ffiKepa ov fir) iriri. 

31. Kal i8ov a-vWi^/j-tf/rj iv yaarpiKal ri^rj 

15. Kal irvev/j.aTOS ayiov Tr\7]6ri(X€Tai ^ti 

£K KOiXias /JLTjTpbs aVTOV. 

31. Kal KaXecreis rb bvofia avrov 'Irjaovv, 

cf. Matt. i. 21. 
aiiTOS yap (Tixxjei rbv Xabv avrov CLTrb 
rCbv dfiapriCop avruv. 

u. 23. 

i^a^uipaws K\r]6i)cTeTai.. 

Again, in a characteristic Lukan parable, such as the Prodigal Son, free use 
is made of traditional material. 

Judges xiii. 

Kal ui(p6r] AyyeXoi Kvpiov Trpos rrju 
yvpalKa Kal etTre irpbi avrrjv '\oov 
crv arelpa Kal ov TiroKas, Kal cri'X- 
Xrifi-ipr] vibv. 

Kal vvv (pvXa^ai Stj Kal p.7) iriris olvov 
Kal fiiOvfffia, Kai fir] (pdyrfs ttolv 

OTi iSov cv iv yacTpl ^'x^'^ '''''' '''^iV 
vibv, Kal albrfpoi e-rrl ttjv K«f)aXrjv 
avrov OVK aya^rjcreTai, 8ti va^lp 6eov 
iarai. rb iraibapLOv airb rrjs KOiXias' 
Kal avTOi Apteral rod aQaai rbv 
'laparjX ^K %et/)6s ^uXLcrrdfi. 

Lk. XV. 

15. Kal TTopevdeh (KoXXrfdrj evlruiv ttoXl- 
tCov Trjs xwpas iKsivrjs, Kal 'irrefiipev 
avrbv els rovs dypoi'S avrov ^bffKeiv 

18. dva<rrds iropeiffOfiai rrpbs rbv iraripa 

fiov Kal ipu) avT(^ ' rrdrep, rjfiaprov 
els rbv ovpavbv Kal (vihwibv ffov, 

19. ovK^ri elfil d^LOS K\r]0T}vai. vi6s ffov ' 

TToirfabv fie ws ^I'a tQjv fiicrOiuiv aov. 

20. Kal opa/j-div iTriwecrev errl rbv rpdxv^ov 


A^i^&v viii. 

34. Syr. (Charles, Apoc. ii. 775): 
" Forgive me this my folly : 
and I will tend thy horses and 
feed thy pigs which are in thy 
house, and I shall be called 

246. Arm. (Charles, ibid.): "Father, 
I have sinned unto thee, for- 
give me, and I will be to thee 
a slave henceforth for ever." 

Tob. xi. 8. 
Kai irpoabpafiovaa, "Awa irriiveaev 
iwl rbv TpdxrfXov roO viov avTrjs. 

Cf . also Lk. xiii. 7-9 = Ahi^ar Syr. viii. 35. 

A note by H. St. J. Thackeray in J.T.S. xiv. (1913), pp. 389 £F., shows the 
kind of discoveiies that still await investigators. 

• See my note in J.T.S. xv. (1914), p. 597, from which, by permission of the editors , 

this paragrapli is taken. 



By F. C. BuRKiTT 

Treatment In the following pages it is assumed that the author of the 
nan-rtive third Gospel used the Gospel of Mark practically in its extant 
m the third form, and also that where he does thus follow Mark he had 


no other source available. The difierences between ' Luke ' and 
Mark in these parallel narratives are consequently regarded as 
due to the literary manner of the later writer, in a word, to his 
style and methods of writing history, not to fresh, independent 
Luke's In addition to Mark the Third Evangelist, no doubt, had other 

sources. sourccs for many parts of his Gospel to which there are no Marcan 
parallels, sources such as the mysterious ' Q.' In the Acts, 
which is simply Volume 11. to the Third Gospel, there must also 
have been ' sources ' used, written or oral. But we do not 
possess them, and we cannot reconstruct them. We can, how- 
ever, study in detail the way in which ' Luke ' has treated Mark, 
and judge whether he treated it fairly or unfairly, with historical 
acumen, or unintelHgently. Our aim will be to form some idea 
of the value of the rest of his work as a picture of the early days 
of Christianity. 
' Luke ' One point may be noted at the beginning. We must beware 

Marcan of confouudiug the narrative of Mark with the actual course 
°''^®''" of events in the Mnistry of Jesus. No doubt Mark is the best 



source we have, the nearest both in time and information to 
the actual happenings. And I assume that for all the public 
hfe of Jesus, with the possible exception of the actual Passion, 
Luke's other sources gave him nothing like a detailed itinerary 
or connected story of our Lord's pubhc career. Now Mark 
ob^^ously offers us a very imperfect itinerary at the best. During 
the final sojourn in Jerusalem it does assume the nature of a 
diary, and indeed from x. 32 onwards I see no reason to doubt 
that it is written in strict chronological order. We may go 
back further and say that, after Peter's confession at Caesarea 
PhiKppi, the approaching visit to Jerusalem is held steadily in 
view. But from the beginning of the Gospel to Mark viii. 26 
the impression I get is of a series of anecdotes, arranged only 
roughly in the order of time, or indeed in any order at all. The 
evidence may show that Luke was as dependent as we are upon 
Mark for his information about large sections of the Gospel 
narrative, but he had the same right as Loisy or Harnack, 
or any other modern writer, to rearrange the tale told by his 
authority into what he might consider to be a form essentially 
more true to the underlying reahty. 

A somewhat difierent question which may be asked is, how st. Luke's 
far ' Luke's ' sources may be supposed to reappear intact, or h^i^^'source. 
essentially intact, in his own narrative ? In other words, how 
far could we reconstruct Mark out of Luke ? The answer must 
be that we can do very Uttle. The Gospel of Luke is very far 
from being a " second edition of Mark, revised and enlarged," as 
I have elsewhere ventured to call the Gospel of Matthew.^ Luke 
is a fresh historical work, in which the Marcan thread is often 
dropped, and the bits of Mark are ingeniously fitted into the 
Lucan scheme by alterations and omissions which would have 
made their original setting unrecognisable, were it not for the fact 
that the original is still extant. 

To take the clearest instance, what information did ' Luke ' {«) The 
possess about the final Visit to Jerusalem ? I leave out for the jerusliem. 

^ Earliest Sources for the Life of Jesus, p. 97. 


present everything after the Last Supper. This Visit to Jeru- 
salem was the most pubhc period of the whole Ministry ; in the 
words of Acts xxvi. 26 : " The thing was not done in a comer." 
Here, therefore, an historical inquirer might be expected to 
amass new material. But as a matter of fact ' Luke ' seems 
to have had little beyond the narrative of Mark. There is the 
story of Zacchaeus, the parable of the Pounds, the saying 
about Stones crying out, and the story of Christ weeping over 
Jerusalem. All the rest of Luke xix.-xxi. is a mere rewriting 
of Mark x. 32-xiii. It may be added that the opening section 
of Luke xxii. is directly taken from Mark xiv. : ' Luke ' does 
not seem to have had any information about the poHcy of 
the Chief Priests or the ' betrayal ' by Judas beyond what Mark 
tells us. 
The treat- First let US ask how this section of Mark fares in the Lucan 

Mark by narrative. To begin with, the section of Mark occupies nearly 
^' nine pages in Westcott and Hort, while in Luke it occupies only 

eight pages, notwithstanding the fresh stories of Zacchaeus and 
the parable of the Pounds. Thus the Marcan narrative appears 
in Luke considerably curtailed. 

What is more important is that the chronological links have 
been removed. The chronology of Holy Week rests on Mark, 
and Mark alone. It is from Mark that we infer that the entry 
into Jerusalem took place on "Palm Sunday," the cleansing of 
the Temple on the Monday in Holy Week, the vigorous disputes 
with Chief Priests and others in Jerusalem on the Tuesday, the 
Supper at the house of Simon the Leper on the Wednesday. All 
this reckoning by days disappears in Luke of set purpose. Jesus 
is ' teaching ' daily in the Temple (Luke xix. 47) ; on " one of the 
days " he is asked about his authority (xx. 1), and in xxi. 7 ff. 
there is nothing to show that the great eschatological sayings were 
not spoken in the very courts of the Temple itself, with all Jeru- 
salem listening. These sayings are nothing more than Luke's 
version of Mark xiii. 3-37, i.e. words spoken in private to four 
intimate friends outside the city on the Mount of Olives, at a 


moment when Jesus had apparently abandoned his public activity 
in Jerusalem. 

Thus we have not merely to do with the dropping of a few 
dates : a considerably different historical picture is presented in 
Luke from that in Mark. In Mark, so it seems to the present 
writer, we can trace some real reminiscences of an eye-witness. 
There is no valid reason to question the accuracy of the reckoning 
by days. The entry into Jerusalem in IMark ends lamely with 
an afternoon visit to the Temple (Mark xi. 11), just as it may 
have done in " real life " ; the very curious story of the cursing 
of the fig tree is told in two sections, each of which is accom- 
panied by details which, while they somewhat embarrass the 
miraculous effect (as compared with the way the tale is told in 
Matthew), yet at the same time suggest that the story is based 
on real recollections of a real incident. Further on in the story 
of the Great Commandment the answer of Jesus according to 
Mark begins with the recitation of the Shema', as the answer of 
a Jew should begin, and Jesus and the questioning Scribe part 
with friendly speeches.^ All these things have something of 
the objective, almost pointless, quaUty of a spectator's remini- 
scences. They do not help on the drama, however valuable 
they may be to the modern investigator, whose desire is not to 
receive a mental impression from ancient writers, but to collect 
material for reconstructing the scenes for himself. 

The corresponding narrative in ' Luke,' on the other hand, 
is admirably staged to produce an impression. The march of the 
great drama is not cut up into days. There is nothing left to 
indicate the length of Jesus' visit to Jerusalem. By day he 
remains in the Temple teaching, by night he used to stay out- 
side the city by the Mount of OUves. Every day the ' people ' 
assembled early in the Temple to hear Him (Luke xxi. 37, 38). 

^ The answer about the Great Comuiandment is given elsewhere by St. 
Luke, so he leaves out the whole of the section of Mark in which the story is 
told except a few words (Luke xx. 39, 40, taken from Mark xii. 32, 346), which 
as they appear in the Third Gospel give no idea at all of the character of the tale 
from which they were extracted ! 


This goes far beyond Mark xii. 38a. One gets the impression 
not merely of sympathy from the Galilean crowd, but of domin- 
ance over the whole population of Jerusalem. According to 
Luke the entry of Jesus had been that of a monarch taking 
possession of his own. The followers of Jesus hail him as King 
(xix. 38). He weeps, indeed, at the sight of the City, for he 
knows the fate in store for it forty years later. But on his 
arrival he turns out the tradesmen at once from the Temple, 
and converts it into his place of instruction. There is no in- 
decision or delay : the challenge to the rulers of Jerusalem is 
thrown down at once. And further, I venture to thinlc it would 
have passed the analytical skill of our critics, if they had not 
the narrative of Mark before them, to discover that the Zacchaeus 
story was a later insertion into the main fabric, while the story 
of the blind man was not. Who would have guessed that the 
Weeping over Jerusalem (Luke xix. 42-44) was an insertion by 
the Evangelist into a narrative which did not originally contain 
it ? If we only knew of the story through the tale as Luke teUs 
it, it is likely that vv. 42-44 would have been accepted as taken 
from the main source, and vv. 45, 46, which give the Cleansing 
of the Temple, would have been regarded as a secondary addition. 
And this would have been all the more plausible, because the 
allusion to the future siege would appear to be borne out by xxi. 24 
(Jerusalem trodden down by Gentiles) . We should not have known 
that xxi. 24 was only Luke's rationahsing interpretation of the far 
vaguer Apocalyptic phrase about "the abomination of desolation, " 
so that the only consistency is the consistency of the Evangehst's 
additions and alterations, not the consistency of his materials. 

The fact is that * Luke ' is far too skilful and intelhgent a 
writer to yield very much to cross-examination. He tells us 
what he wants to tell us with lucidity and charm, but you cannot 
get much more out of him than what he has chosen to say. It 
is the naive, the clumsy, the stupid writers that let out what 
they try to suppress, and ' Luke ' is neither clumsy nor stupid, 
and he certainly is not naive. 


But DOW let us turn to ' Luke's ' tale, as it is in itself. What The story 
would have been the efiect of his story of the Last Days in ' 
Jerusalem upon readers who had no other Gospel to compare 
with it ? St. Luke wrote that Theophilus might know upon 
what the matters about which he had been instructed were based 
{irepl Siv icar7}-^i]6rj<i Xojcov ttjv aacfjaXeiav). No doubt these 
matters, Xoyoi, were of the nature of doctrines and ' mysteries,' 
foundations of the Christian faith, such as are enumerated in 
Heb. vi. 1, 2, rather than tales about Jesus the Nazarene. 
The object of the Evangehst was not to compile a scientific 
historical memoir so much as to give a clear and readable account 
of the origines of the Christian ' Way,' an account which, in style 
and treatment, should be worthy of its noble subject. Such 
an aim includes general historical truth as apprehended by 
St. Luke, for the Birth, Career, Death, and Resurrection of the 
Lord had really happened ; but it did not necessarily include 
meticulous accuracy of detail. To give the broad effects their 
proper values it is often necessary to suppress details which, in 
the opinion of the artist, are not significant. 

Judged by this broader standpoint, what are we to say of the 
portion of Luke which we are considering ? Surely it is a fine 
and well-proportioned story. ' Luke ' takes the tales and sayings 
which he finds in his authority, and tells them in his own incom- 
parable style. Much of Mark's wording remains, but here and 
there it is effectively paraphrased. A few additional sayings, 
one at least of great dramatic interest, are incorporated into the 
narrative, but so skilfully that no break is perceptible. We learn 
that Jesus entered the City accompanied by a festive procession 
of his disciples, that his first pubUc act was to turn out the 
sellers from the Temple, that the grandees of Jerusalem were 
hostile, but did not know at first what to do in face of the popular 
interest. Jesus speaks openly in the Temple about John the 
Baptist, about God's martyred Messengers to those in authority, 
about questions of the Law, and against the self-seeking ex- 
pounders of it. As we might expect, Luke does not fail to tell 


the story of the Widow's Mite, before ending his narrative (as 
Mark had done before him) with an announcement of the impend- 
ing woes and an exhortation to watch for the impending judgment. 
In all this Luke has followed his source. He identifies the 
coming troubles with the Roman war and the Destruction of 
Jerusalem — a very questionable piece of exegesis — and he has 
altered the language of Mark almost in every verse. Moreover, 
as I have pointed out already, you cannot reconstruct from the 
narrative of Luke either a diary or an itinerary for the stay of 
Jesus in Jerusalem. But the general ethical and rhetorical 
eSect of the whole is very much the same as the narrative in Mark. 
It is still the story of the Galilean Prophet coming up to the Holy 
City, and there discoursing about Jewish problems and coming 
into collision with the Jewish authorities. It is the same play 
restaged, not a fresh drama. And when we remember how 
differently St. Luke is able to arrange a narrative, as, for instance, 
the last visit of Paul to Jerusalem and his subsequent trial at 
Caesarea, we shall realise that here in the Gospel he has treated 
his source not only with freedom and skill, but also with 
intelhgence and substantial fairness. 
The Before leaving ' Luke's ' account of our Lord at Jerusalem 

speeches in . . . , 

Luke. we may consider what light our investigation throws upon the 

old question of the historical value of the ' speeches ' in Acts. 
The " eschatological discourse" given in Luke xxi. 7-36 is in many 
respects similar to the speeches in Acts. How would it appear 
to us if we were wholly dependent upon the text of Luke ? 

In the first place the unimpeachable witness of the Concord- 
ance shows the vocabulary of Luke xxi. 7-36 to be characteristic- 
ally Lucan. The details are best left to a footnote, but the fact 
admits of no dispute. ^ The style is eminently Lucan : in addition 

1 Of the special Lucan peculiarities noticed by Sir John Hawkins there 
occur 5k Kai xxi. 16 (Hawkins, p. 37), eTirei' irapa^oXriv, xxi. 29 (Hawk. 39), 
Tis with optative, xxi. 33 (Hawk. 46), rod with inf., xxi. 22 (Hawk. 48). The 
following words are Lucan : avteLirelv, diroXoyeladai, youeis, deTadai, iiraipeLv, 
i(pi(TTdvaL, Katpol (pi.), Kraadai, \a6s, ij oIkovh^vt}, w\y}crdrjvai, irpo^aXkeiv, 
TTToelcrdai, (xvyyeveh, 4>l\os, Further, TrpoadoKia, <tvvoxv> ^^^ aTpaToiredov 


to those words and locutions enumerated in the footnote we may 
notice the phrase "set in your hearts," which is also found in 
Luke i. 66 and Acts v. 4. Still more striking is the fact that 
the words, " not a hair of your head shall perish," reappear in 
Acts xxvii. 34, in the midst of ' Luke's ' account of Paul's 

With these linguistic facts in our minds it would have been 
impossible not to give full weight to the suspicious circumstance 
that the siege of Jerusalem by hostile armies is foretold in so 
many words in v. 20 : it would be fairly urged that it is 
unlikely that the words as they stand in that verse could have 
been what Jesus said. Finally, there is something improbable 
in the general situation as given in Luke. Was this discourse the 
sort of thing that all the people came early to hear in the Temple 
(xxi. 38) ? And, when closely looked at, many of the verses, 
e.g. 12-19, are inappropriate to a public speech. Indeed, this 
very inappropriateness might have been made the excuse, among 
critics of a conservative and apologetic turn, for saving a few of 
the sayings as possibly based on tradition. But the rest would 
have seemed to be nothing more than a free composition by 
' Luke.' We might have given him credit for remembering to 
supply an eschatological air to the discourse, but we should have 
regarded it as a mere Hterary eftort, no more historical than the 
speech of Paul at Athens. 

Well, but what are the facts ? Of this speech, Luke xxi. 
7-36, we do know the genesis. It is Luke's version of Mark xiii. 
3-37. Let us now take Mark xiii. 3-37 and see how our theories 
fare. Some of what has been said in the preceding paragraphs 
remains. There is a large Lucan element in Luke xxi. 7-36, an 
element which belongs to the EvangeUst and does not go back 
to the sayings of Jesus. Luke has rewritten the discourse 
throughout. For the most part this is a mere matter of style. 
After all, we are deahng with translations, with a rendering of 

do not occur elsewhere in the N.T., but vpoffdoKq.v and awix^iv are charac- 
teristically Lucan, and Luke has a certain taste for military words. 



the Lord's words into an alien literature. An impression of them 
was required, rather than a report, something, moreover, not too 
uncouth for Greek ears. And is not Luke xxi. 7-36 dignified 
and impressive ? Note, too, how in v. 26 the evangelist emphasises 
the psychological element in the terrors to come rather than the 
mere signs in the material heavens. The special Lucan words and 
phrases noted above do turn out to be ' Luke's ' words, not those 
of his source, but he has not altered the general tenor of what was 
in the source. Not all his alterations, indeed, are improvements, 
and not all his interpretations of his sources prove to be correct. 
This is notably the case with xxi. 20, the verse that so much too 
clearly indicates the siege of Jerusalem. But when we compare 
it with its immediate original, Mark xiii. 14, we see that, whatever 
else may be said of it, it is not a mere free composition by ' Luke.' 
It is ' Luke's ' interpretation of the saying of Jesus about Daniel's 
" abomination of desolation," a saying which, as we read it in 
Mark, implies some general apocalyptic catastrophe rather than 
so mundane and secular an affair as a Roman campaign. How- 
ever, this is not the place to discuss the older form of this tradi- 
tional saying ; my point is, that the Lucan form is, after all, 
based on tradition. The form which Luke gave it is, as we see, 
coloured by the events of a.d. 70, but the underlying substance 
of it is older. 

More important still is the fact that the speech itself proves 
not to be ' Luke's ' compilation. It may be, of course, that the 
speech in Mark xiii. is not, strictly speaking, historical ; the 
discussion of this belongs to another inquiry and need not be 
pursued here. But we see it was known to ' Luke ' : the reason 
that an eschatological speech is put into our Lord's mouth in 
Luke xxi. is because ' Luke ' found an eschatological speech of 
our Lord reported in Mark xiii. He has, indeed, suppressed the 
illuminating circumstance that this forecast of the future was 
spoken in private to a few intimate associates of Jesus, not 
declaimed in the Temple courts. But that circumstance, though 
of great importance to historical investigators, would have been 


of little interest to Theophilus : I daresay most Christian congre- 
gations, even at the present day, care very little whether Jesus 
spoke about the future to his disciples in the Temple or on the 
Mount of Olives. 

However this may be, what concerns us here is not that Luke 

has changed so much, but that he has invented so little. It may 

indicate that the same has happened with some of the speeches 

in Acts. At the same time it warns us not to trust too closely 

to the times or the places in which these speeches in Acts are said 

to have been delivered, or to place any special reliance upon details 

of their phraseology. With Luke xxi, 7-36 in our minds we may 

indeed have greater confidence that Peter's great speech after 

Pentecost (Acts ii. 14-36) is not an invention of ' Luke,' but we 

must be prepared to keep before us the possibility that in the 

source from which Luke took it Peter spoke in private, and 

that the wording of the speech was quite different, — the wording, 

but not the general sense. For after all the chief point is, that 

the general tenor of Luke xxi. 7-36 and Mark xiii. 4-37 is one and 

the same. What does ' Luke ' tell Theophilus that Jesus said 

about the future ? He tells him that Jesus said, " First of all, 

do not imagine that every calamity is the last. You will suf[er 

grievously for my sake, but it will be given to you what to say : 

in the end your steadfastness will be rewarded. When evil comes, 

do not imagine the Holy Place will be inviolable : escape and 

hide while there is time, for inconceivable destruction will happen 

in heaven and earth ! But when things are at their worst, 

the Son of Man will come from heaven as Laniel foretold, and 

will gather his saints from their hiding-places. It is all as 

inevitable as the leaves on the fig-tree every summer, and it will 

surely come in this generation, though no one knows the exact 

moment. So watch ! Watch ! Keep yourselves on the alert, 

lest you be caught unprepared ! " 

Is this a summary of the speech in Luke ? It would stand 
equally well for that in Mark. The length and detail of the 
common summary is a measure of the general faithfulness of 


'Luke ' to his sources, and of the confidence which we may reason- 
ably place in his reports of speeches in his second volume. 

Luke's We must now return to our main thesis. What is true of 

method. ' Luke's ' accoimt of the final visit of Jesus to Jerusalem is 
generally true of aU the rest of the Gospel. Surely we may con- 
fess, in the words I have already had occasion to use, that " in 
style and treatment it is worthy of its noble subject," and that 
the sketch which it gives of the Ministry of Jesus is characterised 
by " general historical truth." We read in the Third Gospel of 
the preaching of the Baptist and the Baptism of Jesus, followed 
by his retirement for a while into the desert. When he is ready 
(Luke iv. 1.3 f.) he returns to Galilee as a Herald of good tidings 
for the poor and the oppressed. He teaches his message in the 
synagogues, and we are given a specimen of his method, which 
serves as a sort of overture to the tale of the IVIinistry (iv. 16-30). 
Then follow anecdotes of wonderful deeds, the call of Peter and 
others, a collection of ethical counsels for disciples, sayings about 
the Baptist, sayings about forgiveness of sins. All this takes 
place while Jesus goes from place to place, accompanied by his 
twelve chosen associates and certain grateful women who have 
been healed by him, and in return support the itinerant Herald 
of the Kingdom of God (viii. 1-3). After this we read of a short 
visit over the Lake, of the feeding of 5000 men near Bethsaida, 
but otherwise there is no indication of absence from the towns 
and villages of Galilee. Jesus, however, knows well that the 
time for his " exodus " is at hand (ix. 31, 44, 51), and so he sets his 
face to go to Jerusalem. It is apparently a leisurely journey 
through cities and villages (xiii. 22). No itinerary of it can be 
constructed, except that it begins by going south through Samari- 
tan country (ix. 52 f.), proceeds through Samaria and Galilee 
(xvii. 11), and so reaches Jericho (xviii. 35). Theophilus 
certainly possessed no atlas, and probably all Palestinian villages 
were much alike to him, if not to ' Luke ' himself.^ 

^ See Appendix B on Vestigia Christi. 


I do not think ' Luke ' intends us to follow the footsteps of 
Jesus and his companions. To do so would be to distract our 
eyes from the goal. Respice finetn is all that these later notices 
of place signify. Chorazin, Bethsaida, Capernaum have not 
repented, soon it will be too late ; the Son of Man must be handed 
over to the Gentiles ; God will avenge His elect speedily, before 
the careless expect it, yet not till after some delay, and He is 
always ready to forgive those who repent. Something like this 
is the impression which these central chapters of the Third 
Gospel are meant to convey, and surely they do convey it with 
consummate art, ^\ith the simplicity that is the highest art. And 
much of this simplicity and directness of effect comes, no doubt, 
from the fact that Luke is not inventing, but simply retelling, 
without essential change, tales that are to a large extent founded 
on the reminiscences of those who had heard the Master. The 
result is a picture, a sketch, an impression, most admirable from 
the point of view from which it is taken. But it tells us httle 
more than what is on the surface. It tells us what Luke 
wished to tell Theophilus, but very little of the nature of the 
sources from which Luke worked or of those features in the 
history which Luke did not think worth while to record. 

One of the sources from which Luke worked was the Gospel Treatment 
of Mark. Luke iv. 31-44, v. 12-vi. 19, viii. 4-ix. 50, x\4ii. 15-43, ^f.^t^n 
and xix. 29-xxii. 14 corresponds to Mark i. 29-39, i. 40-iii. 19, 
iii. 31-ix. 50 (with gaps), x. 13-52, and xi. 1-xiv. 17 respectively. 
When this list is analysed it will be found that very little of Mark's 
material has been dropped, except the section Mark vi. 45-viii. 
26, comprising disputes with Rabbis upon ' clean ' and ' unclean,' 
the long journey to the north outside the Holy Land, the second 
Feeding (of the 4000), and a couple of incidental anecdotes con- 
nected with these events. To the modern historian these things 
are important, but they add Httle to the sacred drama, and their 
omission is rather an artistic gain than a loss. Everything else 
omitted from Mark by Luke is either small in bulk or represented 
elsewhere in his Gospel from another source. We get, therefore, 



the impression that Luke tends to utilise his sources in full. 
Further, the material is given almost entirely in Mark's order ; 
there are hardly any transpositions or regroupings of material, 
and that is all the more noteworthy, as many of the tales in the 
early part of Mark appear to have been thrown together almost 
haphazard. This adherence to the order of the source does not 
come from any theoretical objection to change, seeing that St. 
Luke places the scene of our Lord's rejection in ' Nazara ' by his 
own townsfolk at the beginning of the public Ministry, contrary 
to historical probability but for what may be called literary effect. 
Yet in doing so he does not transpose the Marcan narrative ; 
it would be more accurate to say that he drops the Marcan narra- 
tive when he comes to it (at the beginning of Luke ix.), for Luke 
iv. 16-30 is not based on Mark vi. 1-6, though it may owe some- 
thing to Luke's acquaintance with those verses. 

General The preceding sketch of the literary methods of the Third 

Evangelist has been undertaken not so much to appraise the 
value of his Gospel as to endeavour to find out what hopes the 
investigator of the beginnings of the Christian Church may have 
of " getting behind " the narrative of Acts and, what is still more 
important, of estimating with what degree of confidence we may 
trust the story there told. 

One clear result is a demonstration of the difficulty, if not 
the impossibility, of " getting behind " Luke by a mere close 
consideration of what he chooses to tell us. There is a certain 
resemblance between the way the visit of Jesus to Jerusalem is 
told in Luke and the way the early history of the Church is told 
in Acts i.-xii. I have ventured elsewhere ^ to conjecture that 
both Gospel and Acts are here based on the earher narrative of 
Mark. The chief difference to us on this hypothesis is that the 
Gospel chapters are based on the part of Mark's work which is 
extant, while Acts i.-xii. corresponds to the lost part of Mark 
that followed Mark xvi. 8. But from what has been said above 
^ Earliest Sources, pp. 79 f. 



it is impossible to reconstruct the lost narrative of Mark from 
the text of Acts. The most we can do is to note the probability 
that such-and-such an episode is ultimately Marcan.^ Further, 
we cannot reconstruct the chronology of Luke's source any 
more than we could reconstruct the chronology of Holy Week 
from Luke xix.-xxiii. And when we consider how indifferent 
Luke in his Gospel appears to be to the details of Palestinian 
topography — quite a contrast, it may be remarked in passing, 
to his intelligent interest in Asia Minor and Macedonia — we 
must renounce any hope of making anything consecutive or 
consistent in the wanderings of Peter and others as recorded in 
these early chapters of Acts. The story of Peter and Cornelius 
may be a tale rewritten by Luke and put for effect out of its 
chronological setting, just as Mark vi. 1-6 appears in Luke out 
of its chronological setting. We cannot guess at the relative 
proportion which the several events bore to each other in the 
source from the way they are told in Acts. 

It may be remarked in passing that the vagueness as to place 
and time characteristic of Luke as compared wdth Mark is an 
argument for accepting the statements made by Paul about 
himself in Galatians and elsewhere, rather than for attempting 
to combine them with the prima facie meaning of the corre- 
sponding statements in Acts. 

What reason, then, have we for trusting the narrative of the 
first twelve chapters of Acts ? Or rather, what measure of 
credence ought we to give them ? Roughly, this : we should 
give them much the same measure of credence that we give to 
the story of the visit of Jesus to Jerusalem as related in Luke, 
as compared with the story in Mark. It seems to me that this 
measure of credence may be compared with that which we give 
to Shakespeare's Henry V. as compared with Hall's Chronicle. 
Shakespeare's play is very much more than a work of fancy. If 
we knew nothing about the great Lancastrian except what we 
get from Shakespeare, we should still have a great deal of sohd 
^ The clearest example is the story of Rhoda (Acts xii. 13 ff.). 


information. We should know the outlines of the history and 
the heroic story of Agincourt. We should also have a not 
unhistorical picture of the character of the heroic king, drawn 
for us by a great literary genius. Something of this is what we 
have in the Lucan writings. In the Gospel we can partially 
control the author's tale, for we possess one of his sources. In 
the Acts we are almost entirely dependent on what he has chosen 
to tell us. 


By The Editors 

It may be well at this point to make a superficial comparison 
of Acts with the results of these investigations. It is clear that 
the writer was thoroughly impregnated with the Greek Old 
Testament ; there is no good evidence that he was acquainted 
with the Hebrew original. He is able to use Greek hke a Greek, 
and in this respect he is more Greek than Josephus, but he does 
not always write thus ; sometimes, perhaps, owing to the in- 
fluence of Aramaic originals which he translated, sometimes 
owing to his imitation of the Septuagint. But it is also obvious — 
and this is of great importance — that, at least in the Gospel, he 
was nearer to the old Jewish literary tradition than was Josephus. 
He does not, indeed, copy his sources with quite the same verbal 
fidelity as does the Chronicler, but he paraphrases and poHshes 
far less than Greek custom would have demanded. Above all, 
in the Gospel he does not invent speeches. A purely Greek 
writer of history would have respected the facts of the life of 
Jesus, but would have freely invented speeches. Luke, on the 
contrary, respects the sayings of Jesus more than the narrative 
of events which lay before him. That is Jewish : to give teaching 
and law rather than the accurate and full narration of events is 
the ideal. But is this equally true of Acts ? The question is 
all the more delicate, because it must be admitted that Luke 
had a special reason for respecting the speeches of Jesus : they 



had authority. It is a difierent matter with the speeches of the 
apostles, and though there is a presumption in favour of similarity 
of treatment, the possibihty is open that the writer followed 
somewhat different plans in Acts and in the Gospel. We have 
not, however, in Acts any of the original documents used by 
the writer, and the questions of his sources and his plan of com- 
position can only be carried further after a discussion of relatively 
modern researches into the internal evidence of the book itself. 

The ' we ' 
sections and 
division of 
the book 


The first period of the history of research on this subject 
began in 1793 when Konigsmann pubUshed as his Rectoral- 
progrmn an essay on the Sources used by Luke in the Gospel 
and Acts. He did Httle more than call attention to the ' we ' 
sources and drew from them the conclusion that the writer of 
these passages was not the author of the whole book, but had 
written a document which an editor had used. Following up 
this suggestion after many years increasingly elaborate attempts 
to deal with the problem were pubhshed between 1821 and 1847 
by J. C. Riehm, Schleiermacher, Gfrorer, and Schwanbeck. All 
these attempts had certain characteristics in common. They 
recognised that the Acts could be divided at chapter xii. or at 
chapter xv., and in general they agreed in attributing these 
two parts to different writers, as a rule attaching greater value 
to the later chapters. 

This distinction between the two parts of Acts and the prob- 
abiUty that therein is represented a diversity of sources used by 
the editor is the permanent contribution of this period. In 
working out the details of further suggestions the scholars 
mentioned pursued various lines of thought, but none of them 
has really proved to be entirely sound. 

Riehm ^ thought that Acts i.-xii. rested on a series of small 

essays discovered and used by the editor, but that xiii.-xxviii. 

rested on his own observation, or on other persons' verbal 

testimony, except for the speeches and the letters in Acts xv. 

^ Dissertatio critico-theologica de fontibus Act. Apost, 1821. 


and xxiii., for which he had access to written reports or to written 

Gfrorer i thought that the compiler of Acts, A^Titing about cfrorer. 
A.D. 90, used a collection of unhistorical legends arranged by a 
zealous Petrinist ; this source covers Acts i.-xii., and only the 
speech of Stephen is of first-rate historical value. The remaining 
chapters of the book are a good historical document compiled 
by a companion of Paul. 

Schleiermacher,2 following up his well-known theory of the schieier- 
origin of the Gospels from a series of scattered essays which the ™*'''^'^'^- 
EvangeHst collected, thought that Acts had a similar origin. 
His work remains a valuable collection of the discrepancies, 
repetitions, etc., found in Acts, but he did not systematise 
his data or give precision to his theory. So far he was probably 
not wrong : it is easy to see considerable evidence in Acts for 
the use of earlier material and editorial work. Probably, how- 
ever, it is impossible so to unravel the editor's work as to be 
able to determine the exact limits of his sources ; and it is even 
harder to reconstruct their contents. 

Schwanbeck ^ tried to give definite form to the theory which schwan- 
Schleiermacher had more vaguely suggested. According to him '^'^ ' 
the compiler of Acts had used (1) a biography of Peter (Acts 
i.-vi. 7, viii., xi. 1-18); (2) a biography of Barnabas (iv. 36 f., 
ix. 1-30, xi. 19-30, xiii., xiv., xv. 2-4) ; (3) a memorandum 
made by Silas (xv. 14, to the end of Acts) ; (4) special sources 
{e.g. the speech of Stephen vii., and xv. 3-13). 

Schwanbeck' s work was the most minute and painstaking Reactions 
of all these publications, but his theory was so complex and gc^'^van- 
hypothetical that a twofold reaction followed. The conservative ^*'°'i- 

... . . . (") C"ou- 

critics pointed out that these theories were based on insufficient servative. 
grounds, and, emphasising the essential unity of the book, clung 
to the view that it was therefore all equally credible and 

^ Die heilige Sage, 1838. 

* Einleitnng in das N.T., 1845. 

* Ueber die Qvellen der Apostelgeschichte, 1847. 


historical. Thus they contributed nothing to the elucidation 
of the problem ; for, excited by their refutation of the un- 
tenable details of the schemes of the critics, they ignored the 
existence of the difficulties which had at least been recognised 
by their opponents, and, under cover of the confusion occasioned 
by the rout of the Liberals of the nineteenth century, succeeded 
in evading the consideration of the real problems of Acts. 
(6) Radical. On the othcr hand, the radical theologians of the school of 
Tubingen were not more successful ; like the conservatives they 
saw that Schwanbeck's structure was larger than his founda- 
tions justified, and that he had not been sufficiently attentive 
to the general unity of Acts. They therefore fastened upon 
this unity, and recognising, like aU the liberal critics, that the 
opening chapters of Acts are largely legendary, deduced the 
conclusion that Acts as a whole is legendary. To them it 
appeared that any minute criticism of sources was unprofitable 
and unnecessary, and they passed on to develop their famous 
series of inquiries into the reason why Acts was written rather 
than into the method of its composition. 

So the matter remained for many years. Schwanbeck's 
criticisms and reconstruction were not seriously improved, 
though efiorts in the same direction never entirely ceased. The 
situation was summed up by E. Zeller, whose statement ^ of the 
whole question remains the classic summary of the position as it 
was in the middle of the nineteenth century. 
Bernhard A uew period began in 1886. B. Weiss in his Einleitung in 

vives theory ^^^ Neue Testament revived the theory of the use of written sources 
of written ^ ^]^g earficr part of Acts. His lead was followed by other 
scholars, and between 1886 and 1897 a series of studies were 
published which when taken together formed a complete dis- 
cussion of various possibilities. The close of this period may 
fairly be regarded as marked by the articles of A. Hilgen- 
feld in Z.W.Tk., 1895 and 1896. It is impossible to give a 

^ Die Apostelgeschichte, 1854, pp. 489 ff. (English translation, 1875-76, vol 
ii. pp. 291 ff.) 



detailed account of this group of writings, wliich is admirably 
summarised by W. Heitmiiller in the Theologische Rundschau 
for 1899, but certain points are noteworthy. 

(1) An attempt was made (notably by Spitta) to abandon 
the obvious division of Acts into a Petrine and a Pauhne half, 
by arguing that the source which contains the ' we ' sections 
appears in the earlier part of the book, sometimes from Acts vi., 
sometimes even from the beginning of the book. 

(2) Great emphasis was laid on the indications of doublets 
which by some critics, especially Spitta,^ were carefully grouped, 
so that Acts was divided into two primitive documents, both of 
which had originally covered the same ground and were skilfully 
united by the final editor. 

(3) Very little attention was paid to the language of Acts, 
and no serious interest was taken in the possibility of the use 
of Aramaic sources in the earlier chapters. 

On the whole, it cannot be said that this period of activity 
in research was marked by the same abihty as that displayed 
earlier in the nineteenth century. The critical insight of the 
writers seems inferior to that of their predecessors ; much of their 
work was marked by a perverse ingenuity, and by a tendency to 
obscure the main problem in excessive detail. Thus their results 
have little permanent importance. 

There has been no general interest shown recently in the 
analysis of Acts, but attempts have been made by J. Well- 
hausen, E. Schwartz, and A. von Harnack in Germany, and by 
C. C. Torrey in America. 

Eduard Schwartz in the Nachrichten of the Konigliche Gesell- Eduar.i 
schaft der Wissenschaften zu Gotiingen, philologisch-historische 
Klasse, 1907, pp. 263 fE., published a very valuable disquisition 
Ztir Chronologie des Pcmlus. Its importance for the criticism 
of Acts is the argument that the chronological data involved 
in the death of Herod ^ and what followed show that the writer 

^ Die Aposfelgeschkhte, ihre Quellen und deren geschichtUcJier Werl, 1S91 
- Acts xii. 20. 


has divided a single visit and a single journey into two separate 
visits to Jerusalem, each followed by a missionary journey, prob- 
ably because he had two traditions of this series of incidents and 
did not recognise that they referred to the same events seen 
from different points of view. 
J. WeU- Julius Wellhausen in the Nachrichten of the Kmigliche 

ansen. Qesellschoft dcr Wissenschaften zu Gottingen for 1907, pp. 1 ff., 
independently of Schwartz, but in the same spirit, argued that 
chapter xv. is a misplaced doublet of the famine relief visit in 
chapter xi., and he also tried to distinguish the ' we ' source of 
the shipwreck from the ' we ' source of the ' second ' missionary 
journey. He maintained that the passages in this story in which 
Paul is mentioned are interpolations, and that the original 
document had no reference to him. 

A. von More elaborate than the work of Schwartz, yet in some 

respects less profound, is A. von Harnack's ApostelgeschicJite, 
1908. It makes httle or no allusion to the work of other investi- 
gators, and is extraordinarily fresh and interesting. 

The general unity of Acts, Harnack thinks, is too great to 
permit any consistent use of Unguistic tests, except the simple 
ones of Aramaic idiom, which he did not seriously consider. The 
test of logical connection between paragraphs had been pushed 
by earher critics to an extent which would only be justifiable 
if man were an entirely logical being ; he therefore fell back 
on general principles, and considered the contents of Acts in 
relation to the persons and places which are central in the 
narrative. This is in some ways a return to older methods, but 
Harnack lays more stress on places, whereas the older school 
chiefly considered persons. 

Acts i.-xv. The starting-point of his inquiry is the evident bisection of 

Acts at XV. 35 or xvi. 5. The second part is, in his judgment, 
an obvious unit, which cannot be analysed into sources. But the 
first part is quite different. The opening chapters, Acts i. 1 to 
V. 1-16, are concerned chiefly with the history of Jerusalem ; 
but at viii. 40 the centre changes to Caesarea and finally to 


Antioch. Moreover, these changes are roughly coincident with 
the central positions of Peter, or of Peter and John, in the Jeru- 
salem section, of Philip, or Peter and Philip, in the Caesarean 
section, and of Hellenistic Christians, notably Barnabas and 
Saul or Paul, in the Antiochene section. Working backwards a 
closer analysis shows that the Antiochene section most clearly 
contains xi. 19 ff., and that the ol /nev ovv 8i,aa7rap€vT€<i of 
xi. 19 picks up the narrative of viii. 2-4, where the same 
phrase is found. But viii. 2-4 is the end of a long story 
about the Hellenistic Christians which begins in vi. 6. Thus 
we obtain an Antiochene source consisting of vi. 6- viii. 4 
and xi. 19-24, and the same methods show that this source 
continues from xi. 25 to xi. 30, is resumed in xii. 25, and goes 
on to XV. 35. 

A similar analysis is then applied to the remaining chapters 
of the earlier part. Acts viii. 5-40 and ix. 31-xi. 18 seem to 
belong to a source in which the interest is divided between 
Jerusalem and Caesarea, and xii. 1-24 is its natural continuation. 
This source may be called the Jerusalem-Caesarean source, and 
in this way the whole of Acts from vi. 1 to xv. 35, with the excep- 
tion of ix. 1-30 (the conversion of Paul) is accounted for as 
belonging either to the Antiochene or the Jerusalem-Caesarean 

The sections i. 1-v. 42 are obviously concerned with Jeru- Acts i.-v. 
salem, and in some points seem to be connected closely with the "^ "^^ 
Jerusalem-Caesarean source. Further analysis, however, shows 
that these chapters are composite, and contain two accounts 
which are largely parallel, and in some cases probably give two 
versions of the same account. By using this clue a series of 
doublets may be discovered, of which the one beginning in 
chapter ii. is obviously inferior to that in chapters iii. f., and 
Harnack calls the latter Jerusalem source A (Ja), and the former 
Jerusalem source B (Jb). He sees a continuation of Ja in v. 
1-16 and of Jb in v. 17-42. He thinks that Ja may be identical 
with the Jerusalem-Caesarean source. 


Thus the complete analysis of the first part of Acts, according 
to the sources distinguished by Hamack, is as follows : 

Ja (Jerusalem source A) 

iii. 1-v. 16 

Jb (Jerusalem source B) 

ii. 1-47 

V. 17-42 

Jc (Jerusalem-Caesarean source, 

perhaps Ja) 

viii. 5-40 

ix. 31-xi. 18 

xii. 1-24 

P. (Pauline source) 

ix. 1-30 

A. (Antiochene source) 

vi. 1-viii. 4 

xi. 19-30 

xii. 25-xv. 35 

Possible This analysis draws attention to undoubted facts of group- 

tions. ing. The question is the choice between two or three possible 

explanations. (1) Do these divisions in the narrative represent 
the use of difierent sources, in the sense of written docu- 
ments ; or (2) separate traditions, in the sense of definite blocks 
of information derived independently from separate places and 
persons but not necessarily written ; or (3) are they merely 
due to the fact that the events really happened in this way ? 
It is of course obvious that the tradition of events in Antioch, 
if it be true, necessarily goes back to Antioch, and similarly 
with the other sources. In this sense Harnack's proposition is 
seH-evident. The problem is whether we can say more than 
this with any certainty. The reason for still maintaining a 
certain scepticism is that by common consent there is very Httle 
serious linguistic difierence between the various sections of 
Acts i.-xv. Thus to base the investigation on the peculiarities 
of the narrative, apart from Knguistic details seems to be a 
dangerous return to the methods of Schwanbeck or Spitta, from 
whose efforts the main lesson to be learnt is that the indications 
are too faint to justify any certainty of statement. So far, 
therefore, as this method is used to indicate a general outline, 


as it is by Harnack, it is attractive, but it cannot be carried out 
in detail. 

Nevertheless the contributions of Wellhausen, Schwartz, and 
Harnack are quite different in tone and workmanship from 
the distressingly dull work which was produced in the 'nineties. 
They are marked by much more common sense and introduce 
broad historical questions. Many of their arguments are com- 
plementary, though there is a clear distinction between them, for 
Harnack attaches greater value and an earlier date to Acts than 
the others would probably allow. 

C. C. Torrey's ^ contribution to the source criticism of Acts c.c.Torrey. 
is of a different kind. He contends that Acts i.-xv. is the 
careful — even too careful — translation by the writer of the 
' we ' sections of an Aramaic document written by a Christian 
of Jerusalem. The primary evidence in support of this view 
is a series of passages in which obscure or impossible Greek 
becomes intelligible if translated, word for word, into Aramaic. 
This is corroborated by a number of smaller points, in which the 
Greek is more intelUgible if it be regarded as a mistranslation. 
These vary in importance from those in which the Greek is 
extremely harsh if not impossible to those in which it would 
scarcely arouse criticism if found elsewhere, but deserves atten- 
tion if the theory of an Aramaic original be conceded as otherwise 

This linguistic argument is the permanent contribution of his 
Composition and Date of Acts. The subject is discussed else- 
where, and it is only necessary here to say that so far as the 
evidence for an Aramaic original is concerned Torrey does not 
seem to be finally answered by his critics. 

On the further point of the unity of this Aramaic original, 
and its meticulous translation by Luke, the case for a single 
source does not seem to be very strong, and the positive argu- 
ments of Harnack and Schwartz weigh down the scale, especially 

^ "The Composition and Date of Acts," in Harvard Theological Studies, i , 



in view of the light thrown on the subject by the use made of 
Mark in the Third Gospel. 

or oral 

It remains to consider the problem afresh, gathering up the 
points which seem best to have endured criticism, passing over 
those which by common consent have proved ineffective, and 
adding such suggestions as these studies have produced. 

Few will deny that progress has been hindered by failure to 
distinguish adequately between the closely connected phenomena 
which form the basis of Quellenkritik. In any historical work 
it is probable that the writer has made use of more than one 
tradition ; but these traditions may have been preserved orally, 
or in written documents, which may have originally existed in 
some other language, and have been accessible to him only 
through translations. It is plain that the use of traditions as 
distinguished from that of documents will be indicated by 
the existence of contradictions in statements of fact, and diver- 
gences both in forms of thought and methods of presentation, 
but not necessarily by any variation of style. If, therefore, 
really serious differences of language and style can be traced 
between different parts of a book, written sources, as distinct 
from traditions, may be postulated. The reverse of this argu- 
ment, however, is not necessarily true, and unity of style does 
not necessarily prove the absence of documentary sources ; for 
the final editor of the book, who put together the materials 
derived from various traditions and documents, may have re- 
written the whole in his own language. If so, it may be impos- 
sible to say whether written documents or merely oral traditions 
were used. 

One further complication has to be considered. If an editor 
be using various documents in his own language, and not re- 
casting them with great freedom, the probabiHty is that the 
original style will betray itself, but if he be translating, the 
probability is considerable that he will use the same style through- 
out. This style will be so far coloured by the idiom of the original 


that those who are perfectly at home both in it and in the 
language into which it is translated will be able to see that they 
are dealing with translation and not an original composition ; 
but they will not be able to decide whether the editor was 
translating one or several documents. 

The question of the original language in which the sources style in 
of an early Christian document were written is always difficult. 
No doubt the earliest Christians spoke and thought in Aramaic : 
but did they produce any historical documents in it ? The 
only test is that of style. The more practised a translator 
the less the idiom of the original language is perceptible ; but 
probably no one can always cover his traces successfully. More- 
over, human frailty provides the critic with a further occasional 
help. Any one who has tried to translate knows that it is 
fatiguing work, and that after a time the tired brain refuses 
to follow the argument of the writer : it is impossible to trans- 
late and study an author simultaneously. The result is an 
occasional mistranslation, due to taking the words in a plausible 
but wrong sense. This produces sometimes a meaningless 
passage, sometimes one which can be greatly improved by dis- 
covering what original it represents. Nor is this all. If any 
one of ordinary capacity tries to translate he will speedily 
become confused in his mind between the two languages, and, 
when sufficiently tired, will scarcely know which idiom he is using. 
The words, for instance, may be Greek, but the idiom Aramaic, 
and at times the translator will produce something quite un- 

This nice discrimination of style is in the end the only real 
proof of the use of a lost original source in another language. 
It can be applied by but a few scholars, and the rest are 
obliged to follow with humility. But this humility need 
not extend to the point of blind acceptance of opinion, or of 

^ The same phenomenon occurs in talking two languages. One may spend 
an evening turning, almost with alternate sentences, from one to the other, and 
end by being able to use neither without error. It is merely a form of fatigue, 
and explains many " translation-phenomena." 


an equally blind abandonment of the problem. In Torrey's 
hypothesis, for instance, Semitic scholars are unanimous in 
admitting his mastery of Aramaic : the point at issue is 
whether the Greek which he translates back into Aramaic is 
in some places inconceivable as an original composition, and 
in others unidiomatic. Knowledge of Hellenistic Greek, not 
of Aramaic, is required for this purpose, and many who do 
not know any Semitic language are qualified to discuss the 
point. Indeed, they are likely to be far better critics of 
the question than those Semitic scholars whose acquaintance 
with Greek is limited. After all, many things can be said 
similarly in two languages, and the man who knows Semitic 
idioms well, and Greek less intimately, is apt to find Semitic 
originals in every document which he touches, because he reahses 
that some phrase or idiom would be perfectly good Semitic, and 
does not appreciate the fact that it is also perfectly good Greek. 
Editorial When the question of language and the general boundaries 

of sources has been settled, the most difficult problem of all 
remains, for it will sometimes be possible to detect short passages 
which have been put in by the editor in order to improve or 
elucidate a narrative. But it must be remembered that many 
critics have erred by assuming too easily that the editor always 
did his work badly, and that the original document which he was 
copying was invariably logical. There is not, however, really any 
decisive reason why it should always be the editor, and never 
the writer of the original, who is illogical. 

Many of these points have been consistently overlooked by 
critics who have investigated Acts. They have not distinguished 
between criteria pointing to the use of written documents, and 
those indicating merely that an historian dealing with a large 
subject naturally used several traditions corresponding in the 
main to the localities with which he was concerned. They have 
been inclined either to overestimate the unity of style in the 
book or to exaggerate the divergencies of thought ; and have been 
singularly blind to the generally Semitic idiom of the earlier 


chapters as compared with the much more purely Greek style 
of the later ones. They have either ignored entirely the traces 
of illogical connection, or have attributed them all — and much 
which was not really illogical — to the editor, and none of them to 
his sources. The truth seems to be that although there is a 
prima facie probability for the use of written sources in Acts, 
and especially for Aramaic sources in the earUer chapters, the 
writer wrote too well to allow us to distinguish with certainty 
either the boundaries of his sources or the extent of his own 
editorial work. 

In the following paragraphs, therefore, no attempt will be Evidence 
made to distinguish minutely the work of the final redactor, in Acts. 
This point can best be discussed in the pages of a commentary. 
But it is possible and necessary to bring together the existing 
evidence for the use of sources in Acts and to indicate the com- 
parative probability — it is never more — of alternative theories. 

The two treatises or \6<yot addressed to Theophilus, and 
generally known as the Gospel according to Luke and Acts, 
obviously form a single literary work. The critical questions 
concerned with them deal with the documents and traditions 
which may have been used by the author, and the way in which 
he put them together. 

To solve these problems we have, apart from the probabili- 
ties established by the tradition of the writing of history 
among Greeks and Jews, and, above all, by the author's use of 
Mark in the Gospel, only two sources of information. 

(1) The statement of the author in his preface at the 
beginning of Luke. 

(2) The internal evidence given in Acts by linguistic indica- 
tions and by seams which show that he has passed from one 
source (traditional or documentary) to another. 

The opening verses of the Gospel and of Acts are often, but Ancient 
somewhat loosely, called Prefaces. Ancient writers, however, 
distinguished between three phrases which might with more or 


less correctness be translated by Preface — irpoolfjbiov, 7rpoypa(f)i], 
and TrpoeK6e<ji<;?- 

The TrpooLfiLop was tlie introduction at the beginning of a 
work explaining the writer's purpose. This naturally would 
come at the beginning of the first of a series of Xojot or ' books ' ; 
and, as a rule, nowhere else. 

The irpo'ypa^r} and 7rpoeKdeat<i were devices sometimes, but 
not always, adopted by historical writers to serve as signposts 
to their readers. They were especially used at the beginning 
of a X0709 in a work comprising many Xoyot to show the stage 
which had been reached in the narrative. The -Trpoypacfiy differed 
from the 7rpoeK6eo-i<; only because it was not an integral part of 
the text. This is clearly seen from Polybius, who says (xi. 1.5): 
. . . tcct)? 8e Tive<i iTrt^TjTovcn ttco? rj/xec^ ov vrpoypacfja^ ev 
ravTT] TJj /3i^\(p, KaOdirep 01 irpo rjfMcov, aXXa Koi irpoeKdeaei'; 
KaO eKdarrjv oXvfMTTuiSa TreTrou'jKap.ev rcov irpd^ecov. iyco Be 
KpiVQ), '^pyaLfMov [xev eivai to tcov 7rpoypa(f)0)v <yevo<i . . • 
decopcov Se Sia 7ro\/Va? alria^ koI Ta<; Tvj(ovaa<; oXijcopov/xevov 
Kal <f)6ei,po/x€vov to tcov Trpoypacpcov j6V0<i, ovro)^ Kal Sea 
TavTU 7rpo<; tovto to fiipo^; KaTTjve^Orjv t/^? yap irpoeKdeaew^ 
ov /Movov lcroSvva/jiov<Tr]<; tt) rrpoypa^y, dWa Kal TrXelov tl 
Svva/Jievr)<;, d/xa Se Kal '^copav i'^ovcrr]'; d(T<pa\eaTepav Bed 
TO crv/ji7r67r\e'^0ai Trj irpayfiaTela, tovtco jxdWov iBoKC/xd- 
aajxev '^prjcrOai fiepet kt\. That is to say, " But perhaps 
some are asking why we are not using irpoypacjiaL in this book 
like our predecessors, but have prefixed 7rpoeK6ea-6i<? to each 
Olympiad. Now I consider that the usual kind of 'irpoypa^ai 
are useful, . . . but noticing that for many ordinary reasons 
7rpoypa(pai are treated Lightly and are destroyed, I was induced 
to adopt my present procedure. For irpoeKOeaei'i have the same 

^ The technical question of the literary use of Trpoypa<pal and wpoeKdecris 
is best discussed by R. Laqueur in his "Ephoros" in Hermes xlvi. (1911), pp. 
161 £E. See also Th. Birt, Das antike Buchwesen, 1882, pp. 141 ff., 464 ff. The 
application of the facts to Acts is made — but rather perversely — by E. 
Norden, Agnostos Theos, 1913, pp. 311 ff. Some critical doubts as to the 
technical use of these phrases are expressed in Appendix C, 


value as Trpoypacpal, indeed somewhat more, and, besides, they 
come in a safer place because they are an integral part of the 
text, so that we thought it best to make use of them." 

It is clear that a Trpoypacjii] is a label with the table of contents 
attached to a X0709, or (which is the same thing differently 
described) to a t6[xo^, while a irpoeKOecrt'; is a similar statement 
incorporated into the text. If properly drawn up it contained 
a statement of the subjects discussed in the previous \6yo<;, and 
of those which would be dealt with in the \6jo<i to which it was 

Not all writers made use of this device, but it was obviously 
useful and common. The customary form of 7rpo6Kdeat<; may 
be found in Polybius and Diodorus Siculus : it gives a short 
account of what has been dealt with in the preceding book, and 
a summary of what is to come. For instance, in Diodorus 
Siculus ii. 1 there is the following scheme. }) fiev irpo TavT7]<i 
l3i^Xo<i . . . irepie-^ei Ta<i Kar AtyvTrrov irpd^ea, iv ah 
V7rdp)(^et TO, . . . fivdoXoyovfieva . . . Kal raXXa ra . . . 
TrapaSo^oXoyovfjieva . . . Trpo? Se rovroi<i . . . e^i]^ he . . . 
tTreira Be . . . ert Se . . ., ev ravrr] Se dvaypd-\^opbev Td<; 
Kara T-qv ^Acriav yevofievw; irpd^et^. The same type of 
construction can be found in other writers, especially in 
Polybius and in Josephus, Antiq. viii., xiii., xiv., xv.^ 

The important point is that the 7rpoeKde(Tc<i summarised the 
contents of the previous Xoyo'i in a long fiep clause and then 
in a corresponding 8e clause gave a shorter summary of the 
contents of the \6yo^ which is being opened. 

Obviously the opening verses of Acts are a TTpoeK6ea-t<;, but Acts opens 
the difficulty is that there is no Se clause, which is needed gram- TrpoiKdeais. 
matically to balance the sentence, and required by the general 
construction of a 7rpoiKdeai<; to give the contents of the X0709 
which is just beginning. Ed. Norden thinks that the Se clause 
must once have been present, and believes that in the source of 

^ Elsewhere Josephus has a different method : ending one book with a 
fiiv clause and beginning the next with a S^ clause. 


Acts the text must have run tov jxev irpcoTov \6yop . . . 
dve\7]fM(f)dr}, vvvl he to, crupe'^i] TouTOi<; a re avr6<; irapoiv 
elhov, a re irap' aXXcov a^torriarcov ovrcov eirvdofjbriv avyypdylrat 
TreLpdao/mai M'^XP'' ''"^^ ^'^'' '''^1'^ Vaijxri^ eVtSTz/xta? tov 
YiaiiXov. Had Acts been constructed properly, according to 
the rules of Hellenistic writing, the opening would doubtless 
have been so phrased, but there is no certainty that it was, 
and the preferable alternative is to recognise that here, as 
elsewhere, the writer is not completely skilful. 

Thus taking the Lucan writings ^ as they stand we have a 
genuine 'n-pool/xiov to the whole work in Luke i. 1-4, and the 
beginning of an imperfect TrpoeKdecri'; to the second \6yo<; in 
Acts i. 1. 

According to the rrpooi/xLov the purpose of the Xojol sent to 
Theophilus was to assure him of the certainty of the things in 
which he had been instructed. The author says that many 
attempts had been made to draw up {dvard^aaOai) the narrative 
of the Trpayfidrcov 7re'n-\7}po<^opr}fievwv among them, on the 
basis of the tradition of those who had been eye-witnesses and had 
taken part in them. The next phrase in his statement is obscure : 
eBo^e KUfiol rrapijKoXovdrjKOTL civcoOev Trdatv dKpL^co<; Ka6e^r}<i 
(TOi ypd-yjraL.'^ To what does iraaiv refer ? It may mean either the 
events alluded to (Trpayixdrayv) or the previous writers {ttoWol). 
The latter seems to be indicated by the general balance of the 
paragraph, and, if so, the important point is the implication, shght 
but unmistakable, that the author himself had not been an 

^ What was the original title of the whole ? The first \6yos certainly 
was not called rb evayyeXiov Kara Aovkolv when it was sent to Theophilus : 
it required this title when it was detached from Acts, and became part of the 
' fourfold gospel canon.' It is unfortunately easy to forget that Luke and 
Acts came in the New Testament as separate books. Is it possible that 
irpd^eis {wpd^ei.'s ruiv airoaToKuv is a late form) was originally the title of 
the whole ? But against the view that the author himself gave the title 
Trpd^ets to the whole work or even (as Zahn has come lately to beheve) to the 
second volume is the fact that in the text of his writings this noun and 
usually also the verb TrpdrToj are used in malam partem. 

^ The use of these words is curious and technical. They are discussed in 
Appendix C. 


avr6in)]<; or an uTrep 6x779 rov Xoyov. Moreover, if 011 other 
grounds the theory be acceptable that the compiler of the whole 
is not identical with the author of the ' we ' sections, the interest 
shown in the preface in the narrations of avroirraL explains why 
the compiler preserved the use of the first person. He desired 
to indicate that here at least he was using the narration of an 

The only method of discovering internal evidence in a book The 
which, as its treatment of Mark shows, cannot be expected easily evidence 
to reveal its composition by its style, is to consider the ' seams,' °^ ^^*^- 
not of language but of narrative, which suggest that the editor 
has passed from one tradition to another. Of course such 
' seams ' do not in themselves prove the use of documentary 
sources : they only indicate that it is possible. Whether this 
possibility is probable or not will always remain a matter of 
judgment. It is, however, to be remembered that, in the case 
of a writer who is known to have been in the habit of using 
documentary sources, to regard this possibility as improbable 
is quite as much a ' subjective ' act of individual judgment as 
it is to treat it as probable.^ 

The first ' seam ' which attracts attention is not in the Acts Accounts of 
but in the Gospel. Its importance for the study of Acts is the 
light which it throws on the source or tradition used in the early 
chapters, and on the method of the editor. 

In Luke two traditions are combined in the account of the 
Passion and Resurrection. One was undoubtedly documentary, 
for we still possess it in a separate form in the Gospel according 
to Mark. The other may have been written or oral ; there is no 
decisive evidence. Throughout the last chapters of the Gospel 
though Luke uses the greater part of the Marcan narrative he 

^ The choice is not between ' subjective ' and ' objective ' criticism, 
but between 'subjective' criticism and ignorance. The problems are not 
invented by critics ; they are internal in the books. We cannot advance 
knowledge without taking up a position of some kind. 


Luke's in- 
geauity in 

prefers this second source, edited so as to fit into the other as 
his framework. 

It has generally been held that Luke has freely changed 
the wording and meaning of Mark ; and on the hypothesis that 
Matthew and Luke both used the Greek Mark, the evidence of 
a comparison between the three gospels supports the primary 
nature of Mark. The verbal differences between Mark and 
the Lucan version of Mark have, it is true, been explained 
by Professor Torrey as due to a separate translation made 
from an Aramaic Mark. This would render it impossible to 
appeal to Matthew as evidence that the existing gospel of Mark 
is verbally identical with the Marcan source of Matthew and 
Luke, and is not a later recession of it. But Torrey's theory 
on this point seems unnecessary. Even, however, if it be 
conceded, the historical evidence remains, and Mark's account 
is historically more probable than Luke's. 

Mark implies the departure of the disciples to Galilee, 
clearly intending to lead up to the Galilean tradition of the 
appearances of the Risen Jesus. ' Luke ' prefers the contra- 
dictory tradition, which makes Jerusalem the centre of every- 
thing, leaving out all reference to Galilee. Whether written or 
oral this tradition can scarcely have originated anywhere except 
in Jerusalem. Luke has pieced this into the Marcan framework 
so skilfully that, but for the existence of the Gospel according 
to Mark, the composite character of his narrative could never 
have been so much as suspected. He did not abruptly stop 
using Mark and continue from another source, but wove the two 
together so that there is not so much a single seam as a prolonged 

Are the opening chapters of Acts the continuation of this 
tradition, or are they, like the closing chapters of the Gospel, 
produced by the interlacing and editing of various sources, 
written or oral ? If the latter view be adopted, can we trace 
in Acts the continuation of Mark, as well as of the other source ? 
Or does Acts represent a wholly new source ? 


Harnack's analysis of Acts i.-v. makes the further formulation Acts i. 
of this complicated problem possible. Clearly Acts i. and ii., xhird 
the account of the Ascension, the choice of Matthias, and the ^°^p^'- 
gift of the Spirit at Pentecost, can fairly be regarded as con- 
tinuing the tradition of Jerusalem followed in Luke xxiv. 
Whether it is accurate is of course a different question ; the Gali- 
lean narrative of Mark seems to prove that it is not ; but it is a 
consecutive narrative, and there is no seam between it and the end 
of the gospel, except that which is provided by the division into 
two books, clearly due to the editor. It seems to be the tradition 
of a circle of Christians living in, or coming from, Jerusalem, who 
had attached themselves to Peter on his return to Jerusalem and 
had ignored or forgotten the Galilean tradition. 

The questions then arise (1) whether this splice extended Problems 
beyond chapter ii. ; (2) whether (since Harnack doubts it) 
chapter i. as well as chapter ii. belongs to it ; (o) whether it was 
written or oral, and, (4) if it were written, was it Aramaic or 
Greek ? To answer the first of these questions demands a 
decision on the arguments of Harnack and Torrey. 

Harnack's theory is based chiefly on the same phenomenon Doublets in 
as assisted an earlier generation of scholars to a triumphant 
analysis of the Pentateuch. The five opening chapters of Acts, 
like the opening ones of Genesis, are marked by doublets : there 
are two accounts of the same events. The main incidents in 
Acts ii.-iv. can be described as follows : 

(1) The gift of the Spirit, Acts ii. 1-13 and also Acts 

iv. 31. 

(2) A speech of Peter, Acts ii. 14-36 and also Acts iii. 


(3) A record of extraordinary conversions. Acts ii. 37-41 

and also Acts iv. 4, 

(4) The growth of communism, Acts ii. 42-47 and also 

Acts iv. 34-37. 

This is similar to the doublets in the narrative of creation 


in Genesis. They are not indeed so impressive, for the events 
of creation can have taken place once, and only once, while 
Peter doubtless spoke often, great conversions may have often 
been made, and so far as the gift of the Spirit was regarded as a 
transient phenomenon of excitement, it could be repeated. But 
this cannot be said of the accounts of the growth of communism. 
An editor may easily admit by inadvertence summaries in similar 
language and of identical content from two sources ; but he 
is very unlikely to treat a summary of his own in this way at 
an interval of two chapters.^ 
Acts ii. This prima facie case for considering the possibility of two 

sources is confirmed by certain small points of language and 
thought, justifying the distinction of Acts ii. from Acts iii. 

In Acts iii. f , Jesus is four times (iii. 13, 26 ; iv. 27, 30) described 
as a 7rat9 of God (though the phrase 7ral<i $eov does not itself 
occur), but nowhere else in Acts is the phrase found : it is rare 
and usually liturgical in early documents. Moreover, Peter is 
usually accompanied by John ; the importance of this is in- 
creased by the fact that John takes no part in the action of the 
narrative : he is mentioned, but does nothing.^ There is also 
a slight but perceptible difference in doctrine between the two 
speeches of Peter. In ii. 38 Peter calls for repentance from his 
hearers and for baptism in the name of Jesus Christ which 

^ On the other hand the author is capable of repeatmg a summary derived 
from one written source as is shown by his treatment of Mark. See Cadbury, 
Style and Literary Method of Luke, p. 111. 

^ This pecuUarity extends to Jc (viii. 14) : this may mean that Ja and 
Jc are closely connected, or that the ' Peter ' part of Acts viii. is a fragment 
of Ja and not originally connected with the ' Philip ' part. But Peter and John 
are also mentioned in Luke xxii. 8 (not in Mark xiv. 13), so that if this com- 
bination is pressed as the sign of the Jerusalem source it must be extended 
to include the last days of Jesus. Such a Jerusalem source for Luke's passion 
narrative has been independently proposed by some scholars, e.g. Perry, The 
Sources of Luke's Passion-Narrative, 1920. The alternative explanation would 
be that the editor is responsible for the combination wherever it appears, 
since elsewhere he represents messengers in pairs (Luke vii. 18, not Matt. xi. 2 ; 
Luke X. 1, not Matt. x. 5, but cf. Mark vi. 7 ; Acts passim ; even angels are 
in pairs, Luke xxiv. 4, not Mark xvi. 5 ; Acts i. 10) and since in Acts i. 13 
he not only arranges the eleven in pairs but has the unique order, " Peter and 


will obtain for them remission of their sins. In iii. 19 he calls 
for repentance to wipe out their sins, but baptism is not 
mentioned. Much stress cannot be laid on this point, for the 
references to baptism in chapter ii. may be and probably are 
redactorial. If, however, the views expressed in Vol. I. p. 340 
be rejected, the case in favour of Harnack's analysis of sources 
is proportionately strengthened. In any case the theological 
difference between the two speeches is not confined to the ques- 
tion of baptism. In Acts iii. the return of Jesus is the main hope 
and message of the disciples : in Acts ii. this hope is in the 
background, if it be present at aU, and the central place is given 
to the gift of the Spirit, and to obtain it for the Church is the 
main work of the ascended Jesus. This confirms the general 
impression, adequately represented in Catholic teaching, that 
the purpose of Acts ii. 1-13 is to describe the foundation of the 
Church as the Apostolic body which had then received and could 
henceforth transmit Power from on High, a theory of which Acts 
iii. is ignorant, for it regards the gift of the Spirit as a transient 
supernatural phenomenon, promised and given to the disciples 
in hours of need. 

Without contending that these arguments completely prove 
Harnack's hypothesis they seem to render it probable, especially 
when it is remembered that the writer is knowTi to have been 
in the habit of using and editing earlier documents. 

Were either of these hypothetical sources in Aramaic ? The 
It is here that Torrey's arguments have to be discussed. The these 
collateral evidence of the facts known to us is against him. ^°"''*^®^- 
Whatever may have been the original language of Mark it must 
have been known to Luke in Greek, and the same is true of Q, 
if that be regarded as a single document. But the evidence 
contained in Acts itself seems convincing. It is impossible 
to discuss each example which he gives, together with Burkitt's 
adverse criticism ; they must be dealt with in the pages of the 
commentary. But two examples may be given. 

(1) Acts iii. 16 Kal rfi Trlarei rov opofiaro'i avrov rourov 


ov Oecopelre koI olhare iarepecoaev to ovofxa avrov, Kal rj 
iricTTif; i) Si avrov eSco/cev avrS ti]v oXoKK'qplav Tavrrjv 
airevavTi TrdvTwv vfMOiv. The impossibility of any satisfactory 
translation of this passage is notorious, but it is easily explained 
if it be translated into unpointed Aramaic : nnt» """r snDO^mi 
nin^ ni n Nn^D^m noa? ?ipn pnD« i^i^ti jinuN jnn ^~ j-rnS 
PdSd nip NTN mcSn nh. The translator seems to have read 
in the middle of this sentence rtpp PlJ^n = ia-repecoae to ovofia 
avTov, but what was meant was nob ^pT^^vyiij KaTeaTrjaev 
avrov, — a phrase idiomatic in all respects, and suiting its con- 
text perfectly, as the sentence runs on from that which precedes 
it, and the subject of vyirj KarearTjcrev is 6 6e6<i in v. 15. 
But the suggested mistake on the part of the translator is a 
very natural one, since he had before him the same letters 
(rroo) which he had immediately before correctly read as 
rrna? (his name), and it did not occur to him that in this place 
it should be read npbJ (put or made). 

This seems convincing ; by the consent of all those who 
have sufficient knowledge of the language the suggested Aramaic 
is easy in itself but liable to have been misread by a tired trans- 
lator ; it gives an admirable sense while the Greek is unintelKgible 
as it stands.^ Biirkitt,^ it is true, offers a rival suggestion. He 
thinks that it is possible to pimctuate thus : tov he apyriyov 
Tr]<; i^corj^ aTreKreivare, ov 6 Oeo'i r)<yeipev eV veKpwv, ov 17/iet? 
[xaprvpe<; e<T[xev Kal rrj iriarei rov ovo/xara avrov • rovrov 
ov Oecopelre Kal othare ecrrepecocre ro ovofxa avrov Kal rj 
'7ri(7rt<i T] hi avrov eScoKev avrtp Kr\. But it seems improbable 
that any one who had just written ov as a genitive dependent 
on fjbdprv^ should write rrj rricrreL as a dative dependent on it, 
when he might so easily have written rr]<; rriarew^.^ 

^ It might be said that unintelUgibility suggests textual corruption rather 
than the use of an intelligible Aramaic source, but few who have actually 
made translations would say this, and — one would have supposed — none 
who have corrected the efforts of others. 

2 Journal of Theological Studies, xs. (1919), 320 ff. 

* The concordance does not reveal any instance of jxaprvs with a dative, — 
the genitive is the usual idiom. Nor does the use of tovtov here seem to be 

€Tri TO aVTO. 


(2) Similarly in Acts ii. 47 there is notorious difficulty in Acts u. 47, 
the phrase 6 Be Kvpio<; irpocreTidet tov<; a(o^ofM6vov<i Kad' 
rjfiepav €7rl to avro. The narrator in this passage is describing 
the growth of the community : " Day by day, continuing 
stedfastly with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread 
at home, they did take their food with gladness and singleness 
of heart, praising God and having favour with all the people." 
The verse which follows is natural enough except the last three 
words. What is the meaning of eVl to avro ? It can only mean 
' together ' or 'in the same place ' (cf. ii. 44 Traz/re? Be o'l 
Tvtcrrevaavre'i rjaav iirl to avTo kt\.) and is constantly used 
in the LXX. as the translation of Tni and i"^n"' (cf. also Luke 
xvii. 35 and Acts i. 15, ii. 1, iv. 26). But in this passage this 
meaning is obviously inadmissible. 

The ancient interpreters felt the difficulty and tried in various 
ways to overcome it. In the Textus Receptus iirl to uvto is joined 
on to the next sentence, but the textual evidence is decisive 
against this reading, which is only important as evidence of the 
inabihty of early readers to explain the correct text. The para- 
phrastic text of D also tries to emend the difficulty by reading . . . 
Kad' yfiepav eVt to avTo ev Trj eKKXrjaLa. No modern com- 
mentator has so far succeeded in explaining the difficulty. But 
the problem is solved at once if iirl to uvto be translated back 
into Aramaic by the adverbial compound «"7n^ (or N^rrS) , which 
has in the Judaean dialect of Aramaic the meaning ' greatly,' 
' exceedingly.' This second sense is exactly what is needed 
instead of ' together,' and the probability that this is the true 
explanation of the difficulty is greatly increased by the fact that 
the word has this significance only in Judaean ^ Aramaic, and 

parallel to the instances of a ' resumptive ' tovtov which Burkitt quotes ; 
it needs the Kai before ttj TrlareL to make it natural. It should bo noted that 
the Western text seems to have taken Burkitt's view and inserted eiri before 
TTJ iriffTei in order to make it possible. 

^ Found in both Targums (cf. Onkelos, Gen. xii. 14) and in the late Christian 
Palestinian dialect ; but not in Midrash or Talmud (cf. Dalman, Grammatik, 


might well be unknown to the editor of Acts, and that when it 
is used to modify a verb it is regularly placed at the end of the 

The full translation into Aramaic suggests another small 
point. The whole passage would run ]^^r\ ""ih i^^'H ^PID N"pD^ 
^^n^ ,DV h^. The preposition b in the fourth word ("""tS) might 
signify either the dative or the direct object. Doubtless (if the 
original were really as suggested) it was intended for the dative, 
but, if the translator failed to recognise the peculiar Judaean 
meaning of N^^b, it was inevitable that he should render it with 
the Greek accusative. The meaning of the original source would 
be, " The Lord added greatly to the saved." ^ 

Professor Burkitt is not convinced by this rendering, and 
prefers to follow out a suggestion made by Mr. Vazakas,^ who 
noted that eVi to avro is often found in connection with meetings 
for worship, so that for instance when Ignatius says orav yap 
7rvKvco<i eVl ro avro jLvea-de it means " when you go constantly 
to church." Surely both Mr. Vazakas and Professor Burkitt are 
confusing the connotation of the phrase with its actual denota- 
tion. No doubt it connotes— at least when combined with 
appropriate verbs — meetings for worship, but it denotes merely, 
" at the same place." Moreover, though the interpretation of 
a phrase may take connotation into account, the grammatical 
structure of a sentence rarely does. Professor Burkitt's ren- 
dering only just stops short of rendering eVl to avro as though 
it were a dative dependent on Trpoaeridei, and is obliged to treat 
TrpoariOevai as though it were a synonym for avvdyeLv. The 
Greek is in fact impossible, and cannot be explained except as 
due to a confusion of thought such as is common in translations.^ 

^ It should be noted that attempts to refine on the meaning of the various 
present or aorist participles is negatory if Aramaic be presupposed. Any one 
who doubts this may be invited to translate into Aramaic the story of the 
theologian who, when asked it he were saved, replied that he wished first to 
know whether his questioner meant aeawa/.t^vo';, awOeis, or merely aw^oinevos. 

* Journal of Biblical Literature, xxxvii. (1919), 105 ff. 

^ It might be said that this passage is a very undesirable one to use, 
inasmuch as, according to the view here taken, it comes exactly at the juncture 


There are many other indications of an Aramaic source in 
these chapters, collected by Professor Torrey, which are less 
spectacular, but taken together seem to present an extremely 
strong case in favour of translation from Aramaic. Obviously, 
however, such evidence can prove nothing as to the extent or 
number of the documentary sources indicated. Thus Torrey's 
hypothesis so far as its linguistic side is concerned, and this 
is its strength, combines excellently with that of Harnack, and 
probably justifies the statement that all the facts are best 
covered by the supposition that Acts ii. represents one Aramaic 
source called B, and Acts iii. another, known as A. 

It is now possible to discuss the extent of these two sources 
and their affiliation with others. 

Does Acts i. belong to source A or source B ? Harnack is Acts i. 
doubtful, but thinks that if it belongs to either it is to B. This is 
surely right : moreover the continuity between Acts i. and the 
special tradition of Jerusalem in ' Luke ' is so clear that it seems 
probable that source B is identified with this source in the 
Gospel. It is for the learned in Aramaic to consider whether 
there is any evidence of translation in these last chapters of 
' Luke.' 

The recognition that Acts iii. introduces a new source and Acts ill 
that it is probably a translation from the Aramaic raises new 
problems. If Acts iii. and iv. had been found in one book and 
Acts i. and ii. in another, there would be few to doubt that it 
was a variant tradition of the gift of the Spirit, with which it 
ends, and it would have been accepted as historically more 
probable.^ But if so we have here an acephalous source. It 
assumes the presence of the apostles in Jerusalem : it does not 

of the sources. But the general reason for this objection is that junctures are 
often covered by " connective tissue," and it is clear that here there is none. 
Acts ii. 47 is as much part of the Jerusalem B source as any part of the chapter, 
and i-n-i to avrd belongs to it, so cannot, with our present text, go ^dth the 
beginning of chapter iii. 

^ It is '.vorth observation that it is noticeably nearer to the point of view 
represented by Mark xiii. 11, which seems to look forward to the gift of the 
Spirit mainly as an assistance to the disciples in time of persecution. 



say how they came there. Can we guess at its antecedents, or 
find its sequel ? 

Perhaps we can never even guess with profit at its ante- 
cedents. We cannot tell whether it really is a purely Jerusalem 
narrative, or belonged to the Galilean tradition, the beginning 
of which ' Luke ' may have omitted as in the interests of the 
Jerusalem tradition he omitted or changed the end of Mark. 
Nevertheless, though the verdict of non liquet be inevitable, 
there will probably always be a few who will sometimes allow 
themselves to think that these chapters continue the Marcan 
narrative and that the John who accompanies Peter was, in 
the original form of the tradition, not the son of Zebedee, but 
that other John whom later tradition associated with Peter — 
John Mark. 
Acts iv. /. The question of continuation is equally doubtful. Does 

iv. 36 fi., the story of Barnabas selling his property, belong to 
this tradition ? Does the story of Ananias and Sapphira which 
follows in V. 1-11 ? Or does the story of the apostles' miracles, 
arrest and release on the advice of Gamaliel in v. 17-42 ? Except 
in the last case there is no special reason for associating these 
with Acts i. and ii. rather than with iii. and iv., but it is probable 
that the second accoimt of a hearing before the Sanhedrin is 
another variant of the incident described in iv. 1-23. If so the 
version in Acts v. 17-42 is clearly the inferior one, and belongs, 
as Harnack has seen, to the B source. It is one of the sections 
which has least claim to be history. To say nothing of the angelic 
interpositions to rescue " Peter and the Apostles," the laiow- 
ledge shown of a speech by Gamaliel in the Sanhedrin, in which 
he appeals to events which had not yet happened, and dates 
them earUer than others which had taken place some twenty- 
five years before,^ contrasts unfavourably with the story in Acts 
iv. 1-23, which has in it nothing to suggest that it is unhistorical. 

^ The insurrection of Theudas to which Gamaliel is made to refer took place 
in 44 A.D. and the census of Quirinius which is described as earlier was held 
in 6 A.D. 


Thus, the probable analysis of chapters i. to v. would seem 
to divide the section into two sources which, following Harnack, 
may be called A and B. 

A contains Acts iii.-iv. 35. B contains Acts i.-ii. and v. 17-42. 
It is doubtful whether the remaining parts of chapters iv. and v. 
should be attributed to one source rather than to the other. 
Both these sources represent traditions belonging to Jerusalem, 
but B seems the continuation of the non-Galilean source used by 
Luke in the Gospel, and A may perhaps be connected with the 
Galilean tradition of Mark. 

With chapter vi. a new section begins. The obvious facts Acts 
and problems in it are : (1) Acts vi.-viii. 3 describes a new factor 
in the history of the Church in Jerusalem — the growth of a 
Hellenistic as distinct from a Hebrew Christianity. This led to a 
more violent persecution and to the scattering of the Hellenistic 
Christians outside of Jerusalem. (2) Acts viii. 4-25 describes 
the evangelisation of Samaria first by Philip, then by Peter. 
(3) Acts viii. 26-40 and Acts ix. 31-x. 48 describe a missionary 
journey ending in Caesarea, undertaken first by Philip, then by 
Peter. (4) Acts xi. 19-26 describe the evangelisation of Antioch 
by the disciples of Stephen, by Barnabas, and by Paul, whom 
Barnabas selects as an assistant and fetches from Tarsus. It is 
clear that in a certain sense, therefore, we have here Samaritan, 
Caesarean, and Antiochian traditions. But there are several 
problems involved in their consideration. The story of 
Stephen's preaching, and the quarrel which arose among the 
Hellenistic Greeks among themselves, between Christian and 
Jewish factions, covers Acts vi, 8-viii. 3. Is this based on 
an Aramaic original, and does it come from Jerusalem or 
Antioch ? 

Torrey claims that it is all part of the original Aramaic source, 
but his evidence here is much less satisfactory than before. None 
of the instances of mistranslation which he quotes comes from 
this section, and only two of the instances of Aramaic idiom. 


Of these the more striking one is in Acts vii. 53, for etV 
Si,aTaya<i ajyeXcov is almost hopeless in Greek, but represents 
easily enough an Aramaic ^DnSq "^D^p'^sS in which the h 
corresponds to ' by ' or ' according to ' {Sui or Kara) rather 
than to the ' to ' (ek) by which it is often rightly translated 
in other contexts. If it were not for this instance it might 
seem probable that Torrey's theory ought to be abandoned for 
this section, but, in face of it, it is only justifiable to say that 
the evidence is much weaker than elsewhere, and that the real 
strength of the case for Torrey's position is the sense — so hard 
to communicate — that the style is here the same as in 
Acts i.-v. 

On the other hand, it has been held by many critics that the 
section is composite, and to analyse it was a favourite endeavour 
of the critics of the end of the nineteenth century. The real 
facts upon which many divergent theories were based are : 

(1) an apparent doublet in the account of the accusation brought 
against Stephen, so that the substance of vi. 9-11 is repeated 
in vi. 12-14. 

^ AvecTTTjcrav Se Ttv6<; tmv ck %vveKivrjadv re tov \aov 

Ti]<; avvaywyrj^ t?}<? \eyo/jLevr]<i kul Tov<i irpea^vrepovi Kal 

Ai^eprivcov Kal K.vpr]vai(ov tov<; ypafxfxareli;, Kal iTTicrrdv- 

Kal ^AXe^avSpecov Kal tmv T€<; avvi^piraaav avrov Kal 

diro I^c\iKLa<; Kal Acrta? yjayov et9 to avvehpiov, e- 

(rvv^rjTOVVTef; tm Zrecfidpfp, cnrjadv re ixdpTvpa<i '\p'evSei<; 

Kal ovK la-^uov dvTLaTrjvai Xeyovra^ O dvdpwiro'i ovTO<i 

rrj (TO(f)La Kal ro) TTvev/juaTC ov Traverai, \a\cop pi]/biaTa 

w i\d\€L. Tore v7re/3a\ov Kara rod roirov rov dyiov 

avBpa<; \eyovra<i on ^Akt]- [rovrovl Kal rov vo^ov, ukt}- 

Koafjuev avrov \a\ovvro<; pi]- Koa/jiev yap avrov Xiyovro^; 

fiara ^\da(J37]fia ei? yicovo-fjv on ^Irjaov'; 6 Na^o)palo<i ovro<i 

Kal rov $eov. KaraXvcrec rov rorrov rovrov 

Kal dWd^et rd edr) a irape- 
BcOKGV rjfMLV M&)ucr?}9. 

(2) The same phenomenon appears in the conclusion of the 



story : the stoning of Stephen is described twice, vii. 54-58a. 
and vii. 586-60. 

K<zt ol fjicipTvpe^ uTTeOevTo 
TO, ifidria avTOiV irapa rou^ 
TToSa? veaviov KaXovfiivov 
^av\ov. KoX GkiOo^oXovv rov 
%Te(f>apov eTTikaKo'UiMevov Kal 
Xeyoi'Ta K.vpce Ir/cTOv, Se^ac 
TO TTvevjxd fiov ' Oel^ Se to, 
yovara eKpa^av <pu)vfj /j,eydXr} 
K.vpLe, p.-)] arr'jcrr)<i avTOL<; 
ravTTjv rr]v up^apTiav ' Kal 


AKOvovTe<i Be ravra Bie- 
TTplovTO rat? KaphiaL<i avr6)v 
Kcil e^pv)(ov Tov<; 6B6vTa<i eV 
avTov. virdp'^cov Se 7r\'>]p7]<; 
TTvevp.aro'i djiou dTeviaa<i el<i 
Tov ovpavov elhev 8o^av 6eov 
Kol ^lijcrovv earojTa iic he^LMv 
rov 6eov, Kal elirev \hov 
decopo) TOV<i ovpavov<; Strjvoiy- 
puevovi Kal rov vlov rov dvdpci)- 
TTov €K Se^Lcbv ecTTOJTa TOV deov. 
Kpa^avTa Se (j)fjovrj p,eyd\r] 
crvvea'^ov to, S>Ta avTCOv, Kal 
ci)pp,i)aav opa6vp,ahov eV 
auTov, Kal iK/3a\6vT€'i e^co 
Tri<i 7ro\e(o<i ekiOajBoXovv. 

These doublets seem to be more than merely infeUcitous 
repetitions, and really represent two traditions. According 
to one Stephen was lynched, according to the other he was 
executed- — with some informality — by the Sanhedrin. The 
existence of this divergence is obscured by the insertion of the 
speech which implies that the Sanhedrin acted as judges. 

This much seems probable, but some critics have gone further The speech 
and analysed the speech of Stephen into two sources. ^ Many of ° '^^ ^°' 
these analyses are ingenious, and momentarily attractive, but 
none of them survive the test imposed by the question whether 
the text as it stands is improbable. The doublets in the narra- 
tive are real enough, but the supposed drata in the speech are 
imaginary and are not doublets. There seems more to be said 
for the theory that the whole speech — which bears so little 

^ The least unreasonable analysis is that of Feine. He postulates a Jewish - 
Christian source containing vi. 9-11, vii. 22-28, 35-43, 51-50, 59-60, viii. 16, 2, 
and a Hellenistic source containing vi. 12-14, vii. 2-21, 29-34, 44-50, 57-58 
viii. la. 3. 


relation to the accusations brought against Stephen — is a 
free composition, either by the writer of Acts or by the author 
of the source ^ which regards the death of Stephen as due to 
the Sanhedrin, inserted into an earlier narrative which related 
that he was lynched. If any one will read Acts vi. 8-11, and 
vii. 54-viii. 1, omitting the intermediate verses, he will not detect 
any break in the narrative. This is of course no proof, but the 
suspicion will probably always remain that we have here a later 
edition of an early narrative, not its original form. 

For the historian the important point is that, though no one 
of the complicated theories of Feine, Spitta, etc., is probable, they 
all rest on a few real facts which point to the general hypothesis 
that Acts vi. 8-11 with the conclusion of the narrative (espe- 
cially if this be limited to vii. 54-58a) describe the martyrdom of 
Stephen as an act of lynching, prepared by a vigilance committee 
of Hellenistic Jews, while Acts vi. 12-vii. 53 taken with vii. 586- 
60 describe a judicial execution by the Sanhedrin. Which is 
the more probably true ? It is in general very unlikely that 
during the Roman dominion in Jerusalem the Sanhedrin 
could have carried out such an execution. Moreover, unless the 
whole tradition of Paul's connection w4th the martyrdom be 
unhistorical, Stephen's death cannot be placed at any date 
when the Romans were not in power ; for Herod Agrippa had 
no authority in Jerusalem until 41 a.d. 

Thus analytic criticism of Acts at this point really con- 
tributes something to the clearer statement of the historical 
problems. At the same time it does not seem that even the 
moderate suggestion made above has quite as much probabihty 
as the analysis of chapters i.-v. It is possible that the doublets 
in the narrative are accidental, and due to mere roughness of 
style ; that Stephen really was tried before the Sanhedrin, which 
had no intention of inflicting an illegal sentence, but the crowd 
intervened and hurried Stephen to his death. The reason for 

^ The facts given in pp. 1 12 ff. as to Luke's use of the speeches in Mark 
support this alternative. 


preferring the analytic view is that the existence of the doublets, 
in the accounts of the accusation and death of Stephen is 
rather strong evidence, and that the references to the witnesses 
and the garments seem intended to show that the death of 
Stephen really was by judicial process, but are historically in- 
accurate. It is true that according to the tractate Sanhedrin 
the mtnesses had to begin the stoning and that the disposition 
of the ' garments ' was also regulated : it was, however, the 
garments of the convict not of the witnesses. 

It should be noted that the introduction of a trial which 
throws the opprobrium of judicial murder on the Jewish autho- 
rities, not on the people or on the Romans, is quite in keepuig 
with the interest of the author of Acts, who is always anxious to 
show that Jesus, Peter, Stephen, and Paul were the victims 
of injustice at the hand of the Jewish rulers who condemned 
them when obviously innocent, while the Roman officials 
acquitted them, or acquiesced in the crime under protest. 

Harnack, as usual, has disregarded these minor points, in 
order to grasp with more vigour the main contention of the writer 
of Acts, that the death of Stephen, and the persecution of the 
Hellenistic Christians which followed, were turning-points in the 
history of Christianity, because through them came the mission 
to the Gentiles ; and therefore the evangelisations of Samaria 
and Antioch are connected with the persecuted Hellenists by the 
formula ol fxev ovv (in viii. 4 and xi. 19). But it is at least 
open to doubt whether Harnack is right in thinking that this 
formula in xi. 19 so far connects the story of Antioch with Stephen 
as to justify us in calling the story of Stephen the beginning 
of the Antiochian narrative. Nor does he adequately discuss 
the possibly composite character of the tradition of Stephen and 
the relation of this question to his theory. It seems at least 
possible that the stories of Stephen's death are part of the 
traditions of Jerusalem, and that the connection of Acts xi. 19 
with Stephen is redactorial, though probably correct. It must, 
however, be noted that Acts vi. can scarcely come from the 


Personal or 



The con 
version of 

&ame documentary source as Acts i.-v. since vidth it begins the 
common use of /xa^?7T?;<? in the sense of Christian, of which 
there is no example in Acts i.-v. 

As Harnack has seen, the Caesarean and Samaritan traditions 
are linked together by the names of Philip and Peter, and the 
characteristic recurrence of John as Peter's companion in the 
Samaritan section suggests a close relation with source A in 
Acts i.-v. 

Was it around persons or around places that these traditions 
grew up ? No one can answer certainly, for history shows that 
traditions do both. The question then arises whether the Petrine 
portion of the Samaritan narrative, the only part of this section 
of Acts at all reminiscent of the Jerusalem Source A, does not 
represent a different story as to early Christianity in Samaria 
from that in the Philip section. The general schematisation by 
the editor is very apparent. He clearly wishes his reader to be 
convinced that though the evangelisation of a gradually increasing 
district was the work of the Hellenists, the original disciples — 
especially Peter — approved and co-operated. Access to the 
Pauline epistles probably will lead the historian to think that the 
spread of the Church was less peaceful. He may even accept 
the suggestion that the difference between Peter's hostility and 
PhUip's friendliness towards Simon Magus is a hint of deeper 
differences, as to which the writer of Acts is silent consistently 
with his general policy of omitting almost all references to 
quarrels among Christians. The possibility cannot be ignored 
that there were two traditions as to the foundation of Caesarean 
Christianity, one attributing it to Philip, the other to Peter, 
and that the writer of Acts has combined them. 

Besides this possibly composite account of the spread of 
Christianity as far as Antioch, the editor has prepared the way 
for the great theme of the second part of his book by telling the 
story of Paul's conversion. He does so three times in the course 
of Acts. Had he more than one source at his disposal ? There 
is no sufficient evidence, but there is something to be said for 


the view that the account in Acts xxii. and xxvi. is nearer to 
Paul's own story, and that in Acts ix. there has been some editing 
in accordance with other versions, which made Paul more depend- 
ent on those who were Christians before him. The story of 
Ananias, as told in Acts ix., in Damascus, seems to be exactly 
the kind of story against which Paul protests in his epistles, 
urging that he was an apostle "neither of man nor through man." 
Thus the possibility — it does not amount to more — exists that 
Acts ix. partially represents the tradition of Jerusalem as to 
the conversion of Paul, 

In the second part of Acts xi. and the following chapters there Acts xi. 
is clearly a fragment of Antiochian tradition. It covers xi. ^ii. 25- 
19-30 and xii. 25-xiv. 28. It describes Paul and Barnabas as ^'"*'' ^^• 
preaching in Antioch and undertaking a mission to Cyprus and 
Galatia, Harnack also reckons to this Antiochian source Acts 
XV. But why should this be so ? Schwartz's view that Acts 
xv.-xvi. 5 represents the Jerusalem tradition of the same events 
as Acts xi. 19 if. seems preferable. The reason is not any incon- 
sistency or ' seam ' in the narrative as it stands, but that no 
other theory seems equally well to solve the problem provided 
by the comparison of Acts xv, with Gal. ii. 

The main points of this famous puzzle are that in some ways Acts xv. 
Acts XV. seems to represent the same incidents as Gal. ii., but 
to give a very difierent account of them, and that though, 
according to Acts, this visit of Paul to Jerusalem was his third, 
in Galatians he calls God to witness that it was only his second. 

The result of this difficulty has been to induce some writers 
to identify the visit mentioned in Gal. ii. with that in Acts xi. in 
connection with the famine relief,^ and to suppose that Galatians 
contains no reference to the events described in Acts xv. because 
it was written before the meeting in Jerusalem took place. This 
satisfactorily answers the difficulties provided by Galatians, 
but it leaves the equally great ones of 1 Corinthians quite un- 
touched. How could Paul treat of elS(o\66vra as he does in 
i See pj). 277 ff. for the argument in favour of this view. 


1 Corinthians, if an agreement on the subject had been reached 
by him and the Church of Jerusalem ? ^ If Acts xv. represents an 
Antiochian version of the incidents at Jerusalem no answer can 
be given ; but the matter becomes altogether easier if it be 
supposed that Acts xv. is the tradition of Jerusalem. In this 
case it may well be a doublet of the account in Acts xi. which 
is clearly Antiochian, of the visit of Paul and Barnabas to reheve 
the famine in Judaea. It should be noted that there is no 
reason to suppose that either account is insincere. Unless 
written records are preserved the most extraordinary discrepan- 
cies arise in an incredibly short time even among the most 
careful and trustworthy persons. Any member of any faculty 
of any university could probably illustrate this fact from his own 
experience. It would be consistent with all that is known of 
redactorial methods to suppose that the editor of Acts found two 
accounts of the arrival at Antioch of messengers from Jerusalem, 
followed by a mission to Jerusalem of Antiochian representatives. 
According to the Antiochian account it was chiefly concerned 
with the obtaining of relief for the poor in Jerusalem ; according 
to that of Jerusalem it was an attempt on the part of that 
Church to keep Antioch in the path of orthodoxy. The editor 
perceived the difference between them, thought that they 
referred to separate events, and separated them by the story of 
Paul and Barnabas' missionary expedition to Cyprus, Pamphylia, 
and Galatia. 
Schwartz's But Schwartz has seen that this conclusion carries with it a 
ry. fur^jjgj. consequence. The unavoidable corollary is that just 
as the meetings in chapters xi. and xv. are one and the same, 
so also the journeys which follow them are also identical. It 
then becomes worthy of renewed notice that neither account is 
complete. The story of the first journey stops, so far as any 
detailed account is concerned, in Lystra and Derbe, and is 
suddenly wound up by a few sentences which are surely 

^ The more the present writers have considered this point, the more 
does this objection impress them. See, however, pp. 272 ff. and 322 ff. 


redactorial. The story of the so-called second journey- 
begins with a passage which summarises the first part, but 
in Lystra begins again with a detailed narrative. Leave 
out the summary descriptions at the end of the first journey 
and the beginning of the second and there is a tolerably full and 
connected narrative. We cannot, of course, be quite certain as 
to the original text of the juncture ; Schwartz suggests that 
Barnabas actually did return to Antioch from Lystra and Derbe 
though Paul did not do so. In this case we have in Acts the 
record of one long missionary expedition of Paul through Cyprus, 
Galatia, Asia, Macedonia, and Achaia. During the first part 
of it he was accompanied by Barnabas, but not during the 
second, for Barnabas went back to Antioch after preaching in 
Galatia, and did not go on into Asia. If this be so, it is natural 
to ask whether the division of this missionary expedition into 
two was not due to the fact that the writer of Acts had seen 
or heard of a tradition which described Barnabas and Paul's 
conjoint journey, and, being written by some one nearer to 
Barnabas than to Paul, said nothing about what happened to 
Paul after Barnabas left him. 

This theory is attractive : but from the nature of the case 
can never be certainly proved. The writer of Acts was con- 
vinced that there were two journeys, and not one, and it is no 
more possible to undo his redactorial work than it would be in 
the gospel if we did not possess Mark. All that can be said is 
that just as Mark justifies the certain assignment of various 
parts of the gospel of Luke to difl'erent sources, so the existence 
of Galatians justifies the tentative suggestion that Acts xi. and 
XV. are parallel traditions of the same visit of Paul to Jerusalem, 
and the corollary that the journey described in Acts xiii. f. is the 
same as that summarised in the opening verses of Acts xvi. 

The whole question revolves round Acts and Galatians ii. 
If we had not Galatians, which is to the criticism of Acts what 
Mark is to the criticism of Luke, the problem would be invisible. 
The account in Acts would lose most of its difficulties : but it 


is hard to reject^ the classical view that Acts xv. corresponds 
to Galatians ii., and the central fact in the problem then becomes 
Paul's testimony that this was his second and not his third 
visit to Jerusalem. If so there is no reasonable solution except 
that which identifies Acts xi. with Acts xv., and explains the 
problem as the result of a loose use of sources. 
Acts xii. One chapter remains to be treated. Chapter xii. gives the 

account of Peter's imprisonment and escape in the reign of Herod 
Agrippa I. This is one of the few passages in the early part of 
Acts of which the chronology is relatively certain. It must 
have happened in a.d. 44,^ and before the famine in Jerusalem, 
which did not take place, according to Josephus, before 45 if 
not 46. Therefore chapter xii. ought to come before chapter xi. 
In other words, it is placed correctly with regard to the Jerusalem 
version of the visit of Paul to Jerusalem, but wrongly with regard 
to the Antiochian account. This is not unnatural, for it obviously 
belongs to the Jerusalem tradition. 

It may, however, be legitimate to suggest a further compli- 
cation in the Jerusalem tradition. Acts ix. 32 suddenly intro- 
duces Peter as journeying through the whole country, but there 
is no explanation as to how he came to be doing so. If chapter 
xii. 1-17 be inserted before Acts ix. 32, an admirable connection 
is given. 

A curious and in some ways attractive consequence would 
follow from the acceptance of this rearrangement, which is in 

^ An attempt to reject it is made in K. Lake's Earlier Epistles of St. Paul, 
but on further consideration it seems that the arguments then given only 
emphasise the differences in detail and the different points of view in the two 
accoimts. The general impression of identity remains, though if the analysis 
of sources in Acts be rejected, the position adopted in the Earlier Epistles seems 
inevitable. See also pp. 277 ff. 

- It is plain that Peter left Jerusalem at the time of or just before the 
death of Herod Agrippa. Therefore the departure of Peter can be dated -with. 
great probabiUty as the spring of 44 a.d. It is interesting to note that Eusebius, 
apparently in order to accommodate the facts to the behef that Peter was 
bishop of Rome for twenty-five years, puts the foundation of the Church of 
Antioch and the departure of Peter for Rome in the year 42 a.d., though he 
puts the death of Herod Agrippa correctly in 44 a.d. 


itself by no means radical, representing only a change in the 
order of a source, to which several parallels could be adduced 
from the way in which Luke made use of Mark. The activity 
of Peter in Lydda, Joppa, and Caesarea could reasonably be 
supposed to occupy the greater part of a year. If Peter returned 
to Jerusalem at the end of this period he would have arrived at 
just about the same time as Paul and Barnabas came from 
Antioch on the mission described in chapter xi. In that case 
the discussion between Peter and the stricter sect of Christians 
in Jerusalem must have taken place at the same time as the 
discussion between the same group and Paul and Barnabas. 

It is noticeable that in Acts xv. the speeches of both Peter 
and James refer to Peter's preaching to the Gentiles and his 
mission to them, and say nothing about Paul and Barnabas. If 
it were not for the context in which these speeches are placed 
one would say that they are much more appropriate to a dis- 
cussion of the episode of Cornehus than to that of the Church 
in Antioch. A good many difB.culties would be cleared up if 
the discussion at Jerusalem were supposed to be dealing with 
Peter and Cornelius as well as with Antioch and Paul. 

If this reconstruction were accepted the chronological order 
of events would be : (1) the death of Herod and Peter's depar- 
ture from Jerusalem ; (2) Peter's journey through Palestine to 
Caesarea ; (3) the famine in Palestine ; (4) Peter's return to 
Jerusalem and the Apostolic Council, related from the Antiochian 
point of view in Acts xi. and Galatians ii. and from the point of 
view of Jerusalem in Acts xv. 

The second part of Acts is written in a style which is obviously The second 
different from that of the first, though the difference is not Acts, 
susceptible of statistical demonstration and does not exclude 
a remarkable unity in all parts of the book. It presents fewer 
problems in the identification of sources than the first part, but 
raises questions of the greatest importance for the authorship 
of the book. 


The we- The most remarkable phenomenon in these chapters ^ is 

the alternation of style between the first person plural and the 
third person. The change is made as follows : 

(1) Acts xvi. 1, first person. 

(2) Acts xvi. 17, third person. 

(3) Acts XX. 4, first person. 

(4) Acts xxi. 27, third person. 

(5) Acts xxvii. 1, first person. 

(6) Acts xxviii. 17, third person. 

Thus there are three sections written in the first person 
plural. The first begins in Troas, and ends with the arrest of 
Paul and Silas at Philippi. The second begins in Philippi — 
the place where the first " we section " ended, and ends with 
the interview in Jerusalem between Paul and James. The third 
and last begins when Paul leaves Palestine, and ends when Rome 
is reached. 

Between these passages come long sections of narrative 
in which Paul is the chief subject and the first person is not 
used. In general it may be said that whereas there is some 
difference in style between Acts i.-xv. and the second part of 
the book, there is none between the " we " sections and the 
narrative in which they are embedded. 

This presents a curiously difficult problem. On one point 
only is there a decided majority of favourable opinion. Few 
students doubt that the origin of the " we " sections is the 
actual diary of a companion of Paul. But to what extent this 
diary went, and the relation of the diarist to the compiler of 
Acts is disputed. 

Four possibilities have received considerable assent, but 
none unanimous support. 

(1) The traditional view is that the diarist is identical with 
the compiler of Acts and uses the first person to show that he 
was present during these parts of the events narrated. 

^ In the Western text of Acts xi. 20, there is another " we," but it is probahly 
not genuine. 


(2) The diarist is not the compiler of Acts but added to 
his own diary the intervening sections of narrative, thus producing 
a connected whole, which was later taken over by the compiler 
of Acts and formed the main source of Acts xvi.-xxviii. 

(3) The diarist wrote nothing except the " we " sections ; 
another writer added the intervening parts in Acts xvi.-xxviii., 
and the final editor added this coniposite work to Acts i.-xv. 

(4) The diarist wrote nothing except the " we " sections, and 
the compiler added the intervening sections as well as Acts i.-xv. 
from other information. 

No one of these theories can be lightly dismissed as absurd, 
and the difficulties of each are the strong points of the others. 

The most clarifying and convenient procedure is to begin 
with a consideration of the possible meaning of the first person 
in the " we sections " and of its difficulty on any hypothesis. 

The certainty with which eminent critics have put forward 
contradictory statements on this question seems due to their 
unconscious assumption of a previous point which they have 
very rarely discussed. That point is whether in their original 
form the two Xoyot sent to Theophilus contained a direct state- 
ment of authorship. Unfortunately that is exactly what we 
do not and cannot know. In the first place the title " the Gospel 
according to Luke " is surely not original, but was given to the 
first " treatise " after it had been separated from the second and 
incorporated into the fourfold canon of the Gospels. Its value 
as evidence is not that of an integral part of the original book, 
but of a summary of ecclesiastical tradition probably made in the 
second century.^ Thus we do not know whether the original 
form of the first treatise was anonymous, as it is now, or con- 
tained a statement of authorship. In the second place who was 
Theophilus ? No one knows. There is no early tradition, and 
Origen was inclined to think that Theophilus is merely an 
imaginary name for Christian readers in general. 

If Theophilus was a real person, no doubt he knew who 

^ The value of tliis tradition is discussed on pp. 250 fif. 


wrote the book sent to him, but if not the work may have been 
really as well as formally anonymous. 

But in discussing the " we " sections this difficulty has been 
passed over. One group of writers has unconsciously assumed 
that of course the original readers knew who wrote the book — and 
therefore that the " we " sections were intelligible as a reference 
to the author. Another group has assumed equally unconsciously 
that the book was anonymous, and therefore that the " we " 
sections had no such reference. Each group started with its 
own assumption, but was unconscious of it, and treated it as a 
triumphant conclusion when it emerged again from the scientific 
consideration of the first person. Unfortunately an assumption 
cannot change its nature by being passed through never so many 
scientific processes. 

If no such assumption be made — and only by an effort of 
Avill can we refrain from making it — the difficulty of the " we " 
sections appears equally great on either of the main hypotheses. 
In the first place the importance of being an eye-witness was well 
enough understood in the first century, and the use of the first 
person, of which there are many examples, is a natural method 
of expressing it. But the value of such direct testimony depends 
partly on who gives it. There are few or no parallels to the use 
of the first person by a writer who does not reveal his identity 
in the text of his work. On the other hand, if the use of the 
first person be not a claim to give first-hand evidence it remains 
equally a puzzle why the writer of the whole did not say who 
was the writer of the source to which he attached so much value. 
It is of course possible that he had foimd the diary, or a docu- 
ment about Paul including the diary, and used it as a source, 
preserving the passages in the first person to prove that he had 
here fulfilled the claim made in the preface to give the evidence 
of eye-witnesses. But there is no proof that this is the case. 
Therefore the frequent contention that the " we " sections prove 
the authorship of Acts by a companion of Paul is ungrounded. 
The truth ra,ther is that they are a remarkably difficult pheno- 


menon, and their interpretation depends on, and does not solve, 
the problem of the authorship of Acts. 

They prove that certain parts of Acts were originally written 
by a companion of Paul, but they are explicable (with about 
equal difficulty) either on the hypothesis that he edited the 
whole of the Gospel and Acts, or that the editor of the whole 
made use of them, changing their style in places, but preserv- 
ing the idiom as showing the value of these sections. 

A plausible but fallacious argument ^ has sometimes been The 
put forward to show that linguistic considerations prove identity ^^'""ament 
of the editor with the writer of the ' we ' sections. This was 
done first in 1866 by Klostermann in his Vindiciae Lucanae, 
with greater clearness, though with a characteristically correct 
reserve of judgment, by Sir John Hawkins in Horae Synopticac, 
and in a more spectacular manner by Harnack in his Beitrdge 
zur Einleitung in das Neue Testament, especially Parts I., III., 
and IV., published between 1906 and 1911. 

Harnack's method, which has attracted attention in wider 
circles than those reached by the earlier books, was to examine 
word by word two of the ' we ' passages, discussing those words 
or idioms which are characteristic of Luke's style. Then he 
makes a list of words that occur in the ' we ' passages and else- 
where in Luke and Acts, but not in Matthew, Mark, or John.^ 
Finally he prints the whole text of the ' we ' passages, under- 
lining the Lucan phrases and words. By all these methods the 
same fact is proved, — the great similarity of language in the 'we' 
passages and in the rest of Luke and Acts. This fact is not and 
never has been denied. But when Harnack makes deductions 
from the fact, his statements become less reliable. For he 
assumes that the relative abundance of Lucan words in a passage 
is evidence for or against the use of a source. In the ' we ' 
passages the identity of language is, he believes, too great to allow 

^ The following section on the linguistic argument is bj' Dr. H. J. Cadbury. 
- According to Harnack, Luke the Physician, p. 78, there arc about 130 such 
words or phrases in 190 places in the 97 verses of the ' we ' sections. 



of the hypothesis that a source was used for these sections. The 
author of the whole historical work must be himself the author 
of those ' we ' passages within it, must be, in short, a com- 
panion of Paul, presumably Luke the Physician. To the objection 
that many other parts of this work appear to have been based on 
sources, and yet have been revised by the editor so as to bear 
marks of his own distinctive style and vocabulary, Harnack 
makes a twofold answer : (a) Certain parts of the Gospel of 
Luke are dependent, it is true, on Mark and on another source 
(Q), yet where these sources are used, the author has only 
slightly transformed them, adding a few touches of his own, but 
retaining so much of the vocabulary of the original source that 
if no other Gospel were in existence we should know that Luke 
was dependent on a written source, (b) In Luke i., ii., and 
Acts i.-xii., XV., " the vocabulary and style are so absolutely 
Lucan that, in spite of all conjectures that have been made, the 
hypothesis of a Greek source is impossible, for there is nothing 
left for it." 

Closely criticised, this argument appears fallacious, but 
in its method and principles rather than in the details. For 
it assumes that it is possible by the vocabulary and style of a 
passage in Luke or Acts to determine whether or not a Greek 
source has been used in its composition. But the style of these 
writings is throughout homogeneous, and the relative abundance 
of Lucan terms is not always due to the influence of sources. 
It cannot be denied that the ' we ' sections abound in char- 
acteristic Lucan words and phrases. But if we are to put con- 
fidence in numerical comparisons we shall have to confess that 
Luke i., ii., for which Harnack claims equal originaHty and in- 
dependence, uses such terms with less than haK the frequency 
of the ' we ' sections. In fact even the ' Q ' passages of Luke, 
in spite of their faithfulness to their source, have nearly as many 
Lucan expressions as these chapters of the Infancy. And 
particularly where Luke is using Mark — for this is the surest 
ground for comparison — we are able to see how efEectively the 


author covers over his sources, even when dealing with material 
which permitted less freedom than other parts of his history. 

In these matters Harnack's statements are especially mis- 
leading. In connection with an analysis of two short passages 
taken by Luke from Mark he makes the following statements : 
" In spite of all the freedom with which the author of the third 
Gospel treats his source, the style, the syntax, and also the 
vocabulary of that source are still everywhere apparent." " The 
source is, as one sees, on the whole only slightly altered (some 
characteristic idioms and solecisms of Mark are nevertheless 
erased) ; moreover, its peculiar style here stands out clearly in 
comparison with those parts in which Lulce could give himself 
freer rein, for it is evident that in chapter iii. ff. he has kept as 
closely as possible to the already existing type of Gospel narrative. 
Compare the Kal beginning a new sentence ten times repeated 
(just as in the source, and quite in opposition to his own style)." 
" Here also the constant occurrence of kui at the beginning of 
sentences is for every careful reader of the Acts an evident proof 
that the author is following a source and not speaking in his own 
words. Otherwise the narrative is in detail (in style) so much 
altered and polished that the special character of the source is not 
immediately discernible " {Lubke the Physician, pp. 87, 89 f., 93). 
But let us examine these statements. Harnack mentions the 
use of Kai to begin a new sentence as due to Mark and gives some 
statistics in a footnote. But by actual count kul is also much 
more abundant than Se in Luke i. ii., which by his hypothesis are 
not from a source. He says that the vocabulary of Mark is 
still apparent through the Lucan editing. Yet an actual count 
of the occurrence in Lucan writings of words impartially chosen 
as characteristic of Mark ^ shows that these occur as oft-en or 
oftener in the parts of Luke and Acts not derived from Mark. 
And when Harnack says that in these IMarcan passages Luke 
kept as closely as possible to the already existing type of Gospel 

^ See lists in Hawkins, Horae Synoplicae, pp. 9 ff., and Swete, St. Mark, 
p. xliii. 


narrative, imitated the phraseology of Mark, etc., he plainly 
admits that in " those parts in which St. Luke could give him- 
self freer rein " he could show more abundantly features of his 
own style, even were he using a source. In other words the 
comparative abundance of Lucan terms in the ' we ' sections 
is not final proof that no source was being used. 

And sometimes at least even in copying Mark the Lucan 
characteristics are almost as abundant as in the ' we ' passages. 
One illustration may here be sufficient. Harnack, in return- 
ing again to this argument in The Date of the Acts, pp. 15 ff., 
expresses himself as follows : 

Let us take, by way of trial, the account of the shipwreck ! If 
a source were present here it would be exceedingly improbable a 
priori that we should discover between it and the rest of the Acts 
of the Apostles or the Gospel of Luke any relationship either in 
language or in style that would be worthy of mention ; for neither 
work is elsewhere concerned with sea voyages. And yet^ how over- 
whelming even here is the multitude of coincidences ! Let us 
consider only the first three verses. 

Here foUows a full commentary on Acts xx\di. 1-3, showing 
its Lucan characteristics, including eight of the kind noted above, 
that is, expressions found elsewhere in the Lucan writings but 
not in the other Gospels. Harnack then continues : 

All these coincidences are found in the small compass of three 
verses. That this is due to accident, and that through accident the 
author of the Acts had come into the possession of an original docu- 
ment whose style and vocabulary so completely, and in every tiny 
detail, coincided with his own, is an impossible assumption. Hence, 
if one would escape from the admission of identity, there remains 
only the hypothesis that the author has entirely recast the document 
that had come into his hands. But what were the words of this 
document, and what could have led the editor to recast a record 
so absolutely simple in character ? No ! every one must recognize 
that we have here primary narrative, that there has been no working 
up nor revision. 

There is, however, in spite of Harnack, in Luke's writings 
one other account of a sea voyage — the storm and threatened 


shipwreck of Jesus and his disciples on the Lake of Galilee in 
Luke viii. 22-24. Neither Harnack nor any one else \vill main- 
tain that these are the independent composition of Luke. They 
are plainly a revision of Mark iv. 35-39, for they agree with it in 
thought, in position, and in several verbal details. 

The following is the text of the two passages. Words 
characteristic of Luke are underlined as in Harnack. 

Mark. Luke. 

^ Kal Xiyei avrol^; iv iKelvrj ^^ ^^yevero Be iv fjLiS. tmv 

rfj rjfiepa hfia^ yevofMivr]^ tJ^wz/ kol uvto^ ive^r] ek 

AceXer^fiev ek rh iripav. 36 ^al -^-^^^ov Kal ol fiaOvral avrov, 

acjiivre^ rhv ^ ox^ov irapaXafx-^ ^^^ ehrevrrp^^ avrov^ AceX- 

Sdvouatv avrov o)? vv iv toj ^ ; ^^ / - > / 

, , „ ^, , ' ua)/j.€v €i<; TO Trepav rT]<;\tfJ,v7)<;. 

ttXolm, Kai aWa irXoia rjaav - •> > n oq — ^ 

, ' > -< q, V / Kai avnyvriaav. ^'^ irXeovTcov 

fM6T avTov. "* Kai yLveruL -^ 

\al:\af /xeydXrj dvefiov, Kal ^^ «^'^'^^ cK^virvcocTeV Kal 

rh KVfjLara iire/SaWev ek to '^^^^'^^ XaTXa^lr dvifiov ek 

ttXoIov oio-re 1^B>] yefii^eadai t^^i; \j^lvr^v, Kal avveirX-npov vro 

TO ttXocov. ^ Kal rjv avro^ iv '<^«t i/uvSvvevov. ^ irpoaeXdov- 

TTj TTpvjjbvr] iirl TO 7rpoaKe(pd- Te9 Be Si/jyeipav auTov \eyov- 

Xaiov Kadevhoov' Kal iyelpov- re? 'ETrtcrraTa, eiriaraTa, 

aiv avrov Kal Xeyovcriv avTcp diroWvfMeOa. 6 8e SteyepOek 

AcSdcTKaXe, ov fieXei, aot ore iirerlfjirjcyev too dve/xro Kal tS 

diroWv/jLeda; ^^ Kal SceyepOek kXvBcovl tov v8aT0<i' Kal iirav- 

i7reTLfi,ii(Tev tw dvefMw Kal elirev aavTO. Kal iyeveTO yaXj^vi]. 

TJj 6a\daar) StcoTTo., 7re^tyu,&)0"0' 

Kal iKoiraaev o avefio<i, Kal 

iyeveTO yaXijvrj fieydXr]. 

Here again ^vithin the small compass of three verses are found 
many Lucau characteristics, including at least nine words or 
phrases peculiar to Luke among the evangelists. 

To use Harnack's words, " the author has entirely recast the 
document that had come into his hands." If his original had 
not been preserved we should never have suspected from his 
language that this was the case, but should have asked with 
incredulity, " What were the words of this docimient, and what 


could have led the editor to recast a record so absolutely simple 
in character ? " 
<"on- The general conclusion from any discussion of these lin- 

clusions. .. ••1111 1 • • (■ 

gmstic questions is that they lead to nothmg, it no assumption 
be made at the start. 

The fact which emerges most clearly is that there are slight 
difierences of style between various parts of Luke and Acts, and 
that the style of the ' we ' sections is closer to the style of the 
redactorial changes in the sections known to be taken from 
Mark than the first part of Acts. This shows that the editor's style 
resembled that of the diarist more nearly than it did that of 
Mark or of the source used in Acts i.-xv. It does nothing 
more ; and the fact is not in itself very significant if the Aramaic 
element in Mark and Acts i.-xv. be taken into account. If it be 
held on other grounds that Acts probably was written by a 
companion of Paul the linguistic facts fit in admirably vnth this 
conclusion. But they fit no less well if it be thought that the 
authorship of Acts by a companion of Paul is impossible, 
Similarly, if it be believed that the writer of Acts was a physician 
the language of Acts offers no obstacles ; but neither does it 
forbid the view that he was nothing of the kind. 

This negative conclusion ought not to be surprising, for, 
as is shown on pp. 112 fi., the indisputable evidence of Mark — 
the one still extant document which Luke used — discredits the 
suggestion that we can distinguish the sources of Luke by 
Linguistic evidence. Though there are variations of vocabulary 
and idiom between various parts of the Lucan writings these 
often prove to be fallacious as tests when they can be controlled, 
and should not be trusted when they cannot. 

The final decision whether the editor of Acts was the com- 
panion of Paul who wrote the ' we ' sections depends on the 
argument as to the comparison of Acts with the Epistles. 

If on these grounds it be held that the editor of the whole 
is identical with the writer of the ' we ' sections the analysis 
of Acts may end here. It is true that such a conclusion does 


not preclude tlie opinion that occasional sentences may be inter- 
polations, but their consideration belongs to the commentary 
rather than to an introduction. 

If, on the other hand, it be thought that the description of 
Paul in Acts is too different from the Paul revealed by the 
Epistles to come from the pen of one of his companions, the 
choice remains between the last three of the four alternatives 
already given. The writer of the ' we ' sections may have 
himself supplied the intervening sections of narrative ; or the 
combination of the ' we ' sections with the intervening narra- 
tive may have been made by some other Greek writer, and the 
editor of Acts, who revised the whole, used it in this already 
composite form ; or finally the combination may have been 
made by the editor himself. 

The first of these possibilities will appeal to those who think 
that Acts XV. and the Apostolic decrees cannot have been 
accepted as true by a companion of Paul, but see no difficulty in 
the description of the events in Jerusalem in Acts xxii. But 
otherwise it has little advantage over the conservative view, for 
it is not necessary to think that a companion of Paul — or even 
Paul himself — knew everything about the early church in 
Jerusalem, and the extremest analytic view of the first part of 
Acts is quite consistent with the editing of the whole by Luke, 
the companion of Paul, if the references to Paul in Acts ix. and 
XV. be regarded as not too contradictory of Paul's own statements 
in the Epistles to be attributed to one of his companions. 

The second possibility has similarly little to commend it in 
preference to the third, unless it be held that there are many 
relatively small interpolations in the text of the later chapters 
of Acts and several incidents in them which are not historical 
and readily distinguishable from the general body of the narra- 
tive. It is hard to see convincing evidence that this is the case, 
even though certain sections — such as the story of Scaeva — 
raise occasional doubts. Again, it seems better to discuss such 
points in the body of the commentary. 


The growth Before passing on to consider the purpose of Acts, it may 
conduce to clearness if a summary be given of the stages which 
apparently have been passed through before Acts reached its 
present form, and of the difference made to the historian by the 
results of analytic criticism. 

1. The automatic action of human memory, and the natural 
desire to preserve the records, led to the formation of local 
tradition in every place where a Christian church was founded. 
The problems needing further discussion in this stage are : 
(a) Were these traditions already in writing, and if so, in what 
language ? (b) Did they already contain parallel traditions of 
the same events, thus creating doublets ? The present writers 
think that they already existed in Aramaic writing and that 
they did contain doublets. But the question is obscure and 
incapable of complete solution. 

2. The second stage was the collection of several of these 
local traditions into a connected narrative. That this was 
ultimately done is shown by Acts. The problems relating to it 
are whether this collection was first made in Aramaic or in Greek, 
and whether it was made first by the editor of Acts or by some 
predecessor whose work he used. That it was — so far as we 
know — never more than a partial collection is shown by the 
fact that the editor of Acts was only acquainted with the tradi- 
tions of Jerusalem, Caesarea, and Antioch. He has nothing to 
say as to the tradition of the spread of Christianity in Damascus 
or in Tarsus.^ It is worth considering that these are both 
traditions which must have been well known to Paul, and it is 
hard to think that they were unknown to any of his intimate 
companions, especially to a companion with an interest in the 
story of the beginnings of Christianity. 

3. A new stage in the growth of formulated tradition was 
reached by the diarist who preserved an account of his travels 
in company with Paul. The essential difference between this 

^ It is possible that he knew, but preferred uot to use these other traditions ; 
but to the present writers this seems very improbable. 


and the preceding stages is that it is concerned with individuals 
and with the missionary enterprise of an apostle, not with the 
local tradition of churches. 

4. A further stage was the completion of the diary of the 
journeys with Paul by the intervening narrative of Paul's 
labours. Was this done by the diarist himself or by some one 
else ? 

5. The whole of the preceding stages were revised by the 
editor of the two Xoyoc sent to Theophilus. Once more, was 
this editor the same as the diarist ? 

6. Somewhat later the two \6yoi were divided, and the first 
made into an evayyiXiov, while the second was given (or re- 
tained ?) the title of Trpa^et?. 

7. A final stage was reached when the whole of the Gospel 
and Acts was revised and vigorously amended textually. This 
stage will be dealt with in another place, but it is mentioned 
here because of the belief entertained by Blass and Zahn that 
it came before, not after, the preceding stage and was under- 
taken by the diarist himself. 

That these stages were passed through before Acts reached 
its present form is certain. The problems involved are all 
internal to the various stages ; with their consideration we 
pass out of the domain of certainty into that of variously gradu- 
ated probability. Assuming that the name of the diarist was 
Luke the choice of possibilities seems to extend from the view 
which attributes to him only stage 3, to that which attributes 
to him all except stage 1, and thinks that this stage was not in 
writing before his time. The present writers are more inclined 
to the former than to the latter extreme, but do not feel able 
to exclude a series of possibilities, down to the admission that 
the final editor may have been a companion of Paul at times, but 
if so he did not have a good understanding of the mind of Paul 
as shown in the Epistles. 


The points on which the analytic arrangement of sources etniction of 



and a comparison with the Gospels and Acts give a different 
view of the course of events from that presented by the text of 
Acts as the editor arranged it, are, after all, not very many, and 
it is impossible sufficiently to emphasise the fact that the main 
reason for ever deserting the opinion of the editor is not sub- 
jective criticism of Acts, but the definite statements of Mark 
and Paul. It is their evidence, not his own suspicions, which 
forces the critic to seek in Quellenhritik some solution for the 
differences presented by three such early witnesses as Mark, 
Paul, and Luke. Led in this way to the analysis of the narrative, 
he is sometimes induced to go further, and to apply the same 
methods to solve the problems presented by the less perceptible, 
less important, yet surely not imaginary, discrepancies which 
are revealed by the text of Acts itself. 

Beyond doubt, Luke and Acts give a connected and in- 
telligible account of the events which intervened between the 
arrest of Jesus and the growth of Hellenistic Christianity. If we 
had not other documents, we should have no power and Httle 
reason to go behind it. The most that could be said is that the 
reference to Christians in Damascus shows that the spread of 
Christianity was somewhat wider and progressed somewhat 
faster than Acts would suggest. But the evidence of Mark 
shows that there was another tradition which represented the 
appearance of the risen Lord as taldng place in Gahlee, so that 
a full narrative of the events ought to include the flight of the 
disciples to Galilee, the appearance of the risen Lord, and their 
return to Jerusalem. It is true that certain alternatives have 
been suggested. The best known of these, and the most attractive, 
is offered by Johannes Weiss in his UrcJiristentum. He believes 
that the Marcan tradition is wrong. What really happened, 
according to him, is this : Jesus said,^ in his conversation with 
his disciples just before entering the Garden of Gethsemane, 
" After I am risen, I will lead you into GaUlee." This was 
misinterpreted, and reappears in a later and mistaken form as, 

1 Mark xiv. 28. 


" After I am risen, I will go before you into Galilee ; there ye 
shall see me." ^ Thus the Galilean tradition is an unhistorical 
attempt to provide a fulfilment for the words of Jesus. The 
true interpretation of the Greek impHes that the disciples re- 
mained in Jerusalem waiting for the return of their master to 
lead them to Galilee : he never came, but he was seen, and the 
disciples received the Spirit instead of the Parousia which they 
expected. This is ingenious, but it is difficult to think that the 
Marcan tradition can really be explained in this way. It is 
bound up with Johannes Weiss's view that the whole story of the 
empty tomb is a relatively late tradition. ^ 

A more subtle theory has been suggested, though never fully 
expounded, by F. C. Burldtt, to the efiect that the lost conclusion 
probably contained a statement of how the disciples started for 
Galilee, but were turned back by a vision of the risen Lord while 
they were still near to Jerusalem. The objection to this theory 
would be that it is difficult to beheve in the survival of, and 
indeed emphasis on, the tradition that Gahlee was the place 
where the risen Lord was seen, if, as a matter of fact, he was 
really seen somewhere else.^ 

Thus the historian is driven to the conclusion that the account 
given by the editor of Luke and Acts is wrong, not primarily 
because of any subtle criticism, but from a preference for the 
earlier tradition of Mark. It is not the critic but the evangelist 
who raises the difficulty. But the recognition of this difficulty 
justifies a consideration of the suggestion of internal criticism 
that in Acts i. 1-v. 42 we are dealing with a narrative which has 
two Aramaic documents behind it. It is probable that Acts i. 
and ii. continue the Jerusalem tradition found in the last chapters 
of Luke, and that iii.-iv. 35 is another tradition of the same 

^ Mark xvi. 7. 

- For the critical reasons in favour of the truth of the Marcan tradition 
that the women visited the tomb on the third day, see K. Lake, The Resurrection 
of Jesus Christ, pp. 166 ff. 

' It is of course presumed that Matt, xxviii. 9 is a doublet of the words of 
the young man seen by the women at the tomb. 


events. Acts iv. 3G-v. 16 is a record of three incidents in the 
history of the Church in Jerusalem, any or all of which may be 
connected with either or neither of the preceding sources ; but 
the story of the trial in v. 17-42 is probably another version of 
the event described in iv. 1-31. The historian is thus dealing 
with narratives which are more probably parallel versions of 
the same incidents than a consecutive account of separate 

The two accounts of the early Church in Jerusalem agree 
in representing the disciples : (1) as under the leadership of 
Peter ; (2) as inspired — at least some of them and sometimes 
— by the Holy Spirit ; (3) as opposed, but not seriously per- 
secuted, by the Sanhedrin ; and (4) as organised on a commun- 
istic basis. One of these accoimts, but the obviously inferior 
one, gives a narrative which is linked directly with the Jerusalem 
tradition of the Gospel of Luke, — it represents the apostles as 
staying permanently in Jerusalem after the crucifixion. The 
other narrative seems to have no beginning, and it is impossible 
to notice this without thinking of the Galilean tradition — which 
has in the Gospel no completion. The historian is more than 
ever confirmed in the view that Mark gives the oldest account, 
but that for some reason, now untraceable, the Church forgot or 
ignored the ' Galilean episode ' in which the disciples went 
back to (or towards ?) Galilee, saw the risen Jesus and returned 
to Jerusalem. Whether the A source in Acts really represents 
a fragment of this tradition cannot be decided ; but it is an 
attractive guess that the GaHlean episode was related at the 
lost beginning of the A source, and that Luke felt that it was 
incompatible with the Jerusalem tradition of his choice. This 
much may even seem probable ; but it is more hazardous to 
assume that the whole of this Gahlean tradition was part of the 
lost conclusion of the Gospel of Mark.^ Indeed this assumption 
seems to be positively improbable in view of the fact that source 
A seems to have been Aramaic, while Luke knew Mark in 

* This view has the support of J. Weiss and F. C. Burkitt. 


Greek.i Probably Mark and source A represent two extracts 
of the same originally Aramaic Galilean tradition. A tenable 
alternative is that, contrary to Torrey's view, Luke used Greek 
translations of all his Aramaic sources, as he did for Mark, In 
this case the translator whom Torrey has detected is not identical 
with the editor of Acts. 

Similar help is given to the historian by the analysis of 
Acts vi.-xv. If Galatians were not extant it would be possible 
to hold that the course of events was that which the editor of 
Acts believed it to have been, that is to say the Church passed 
over to the evangelisation of the Gentiles by a series of events 
which followed each other. The first stage was the preaching of 
Philip in Samaria, if indeed the editor regarded that as preaching 
to the Gentiles. The second stage was the conversion of Cornelius 
to Christianity and of Peter to the recognition of the Gentiles. 
The third stage was the Gentile mission in Antioch. Few 
can doubt that the editor of Acts regarded these events as con- 
secutive rather than synchronous. Moreover, the result of the 
Antiochian mission was, he thought, two distinct visits of Paul 
and Barnabas to Jerusalem, one to relieve the distress caused 
by famine, the other to discuss the legitimacy of the mission 
to the Gentiles. 

The whole story is intelligible, and, at least at first sight, 
contains nothing to rouse suspicion, but the historian is faced at 
this point by two pieces of evidence which really raise legitimate 
doubt. In the first place, before the death of Stephen there were 
already Christians in Damascus, and in the second place the 
account given by Paul himself in the Epistle to the Galatians 
cannot be reconciled with that in Acts. At this point, therefore, 
the historian is justified in considering whether an appeal from 
the editor of Acts to the sources which he used is not a possible 
solution of the problem. It then becomes clear that the theory 

* It is true that Torroy tliinks that Mark is a translation, and tliat Luke 
knew both the Aramaic original and the translation, but there seems to be no 
sufficient evidence in favour of the latter part of this complex hjqjothcsis. 


of sources drawn from at least two centres of tradition and 
representing parallel accounts of the incidents common to both 
traditions brings Acts into harmony with Galatians, instead of 
leaving them irreconcilable as is the case when the editor is 
followed without criticism. 

So far there is a reasonably strong case for the theory which 
divides Acts into parallel sources even while admitting that their 
exact dehmitation is impossible. Anything further is hazard- 
ous, but it is just as hazardous to assume that the editor 
may be trusted as it is to rearrange his material. The point of 
most importance is obviously the relation between Acts xii. 17 
and Acts ix. 32 if. If a dislocation of sources such as can be 
paralleled from Luke's treatment of Mark be supposed, the 
return of Peter to Jerusalem from the conversion of ComeHus 
synchronises with the visit of Paul and Barnabas to Jerusalem, 
or is, at most, separated from it by a very short interval of time. 
This result is much less certain than the identification of the 
famine relief visit with the Apostolic Council of Acts xv. But 
if it be true it gives a very probable picture of events. The 
Church was spreading in every direction from Jerusalem. The 
two problems which became pressing were the relation of the 
Church to the Jewish law as applied to Gentile converts and the 
economic necessities of Jerusalem. The same people were con- 
cerned with both problems, and the criticism of sources suggests 
that their discussion came to a head in Jerusalem at the same 
time rather than, as the editor's use of the sources would suggest, 
at three separate moments. The efEect of this discussion was 
to send Paul on his journey through Asia Minor and Greece. We 
are not told what happened to Peter, but other evidence assures 
us that it had the same effect upon him, for the Pauline Epistles 
give us glimpses of him in Antioch and Corinth, and tradition, 
which there is no reason to reject, tells us that he reached Kome.^ 

^ The statements of Paul iii G.alatians suggest that Peter originally intended 
to preach only to Jews. But tradition seems to show that he did, in fact, make 
converts also among the Gentiles. Probably both he and Paul began by 
preaching in the synagogues, but found their chief success outside of them. 


After Acts xv. the historian has but little to learn from 
analytic criticism. Various attempts have been made to dissect 
the second part of Acts into two sources ; but none has won any 
permanent place in the esteem of scholars. AU that need be 
said is that 1 and 2 Corinthians ^ play here somewhat the same 
part as Mark and Galatians do in the consideration of Acts i.-xv. 
They warn the reader how imperfect and one-sided a record Acts 
is. It omits all the story of the dissensions in the Corinthian 
church, and nothing in Acts would account for the strong lan- 
guage which Paul uses in Corinthians about his misfortunes at 
Ephesus. The writer of Acts obviously omits and compresses : 
did he do so from ignorance or deliberately ? If he was ignorant, 
can he have been a companion of Paul for any long period ? If 
he did it deliberately, he surely was not writing with the primary 
object of telling the facts about the spread of the Gospel. He 
has suppressed the struggle between Paul and the extreme Greek 
party, just as he modified the story of the struggle between Paul 
and the Judaising party. Not to give a complete record, but to 
fulfil a didactic and possibly apologetic purpose was the object 
of the writer. 

Whatever views may be held as to the analysis of Acts and The literary 
the recovery of the sources used by the editor, it remains necessary Acte.° 
to carry further the question raised by the last paragraph, WTiat 
was the plan and purpose of the editor ? 

So far as the plan of the editor, in the sense of merely literary 
composition, is concerned, it is obvious that he arranges his 
material in a natural and orderly manner, so as to describe 
the spread of the Church from Jerusalem to Rome, and divides 

Missionaries may preach where they choose, but they make converts where they 

^ An attempt was made in K. Lake's Earlier Epistles of St. Paul to sum- 
marise the evidence of 1 and 2 Corinthians. This should be supplemented by 
a consideration of J. Weiss's commentary on 1 Corinthians. But it is perhaps 
worth mentioning that it was the sense of contrast of 1 Corinthians with Acts 
which led the writer of the Earlier Epistles to turn to Acts, before going on to 
tlie Later Epistles, which he has not, however, forgotten. 


his narrative by short summaries of the progress made. Far 
the best statement of this is given by Professor C. H. Turner 
in the article on Chronology in Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible. 
He writes as follows : " The picture is cut up, as it were, into six 
panels, each labelled with a general summary of progress, and 
with so careful an artist, the divisions thus outlined are, in the 
absence of more precise data, the natural starting-point of in- 
vestigation, (i.) First period, i. 1 : The Church in Jerusalem 
and the preaching of St. Peter : summary in vi. 7 : ' And the 
word of God was increasing, and the number of disciples in 
Jerusalem was being greatly multiplied, and a large number 
of the priests were becoming obedient to the faith.' (ii.) Second 
period, vi. 8 : Extension of the Church through Palestine ; the 
preaching of St. Stephen ; troubles with the Jews : summary in 
ix. 31 : ' The Church throughout all Galilee and Judaea and 
Samaria was having peace, being built up, and walking in the 
fear of the Lord and in the consolation of the Holy Spirit was 
being multiplied.' (iii.) Third period, ix. 32 : The extension of 
the Church to Antioch ; St. Peter's conversion of Cornelius ; 
further troubles with the Jews : summary in xii. 24 : ' And the 
word of the Lord was increasing and being multiplied.' (iv.) 
Fourth period, xii. 25 : Extension of the Church to Asia Minor ; 
preaching of St. Paul in ' Galatia ' ; troubles with the Jewish 
Christians : summary in xvi. 5 : ' The Churches then were being 
confirmed in the faith, and were abounding more in number 
daily.' (v.) Fifth period, xvi. 6 : Extension of the Church to 
Europe ; St. Paul's missionary work in the great centres, such as 
Corinth and Ephesus : summary in xix. 20 : 'So forcibly was the 
word of the Lord increasing and prevailing.' (vi.) Sixth period, 
xix. 21 : Extension of the Church to Eome ; St. Paul's captivi- 
ties : summarised in xxviii. 31 : ' Proclaiming the kingdom of 
God and teaching the things concerning the Lord Jesus Christ 
with all boldness unliindered.' 

" Of these six sections, the protagonist in the first three is 
St. Peter, in the last three St. Paul, and the two halves into which 


the book thus naturally falls make almost equal divisions at the 
middle of the whole period covered." 

There is only one point on which this statement may perhaps 
be supplemented or corrected. The general statement that Acts 
is arranged by the editor into a series of ' panels ' is incontro- 
vertible ; but are there only six ? The doubt arises from the 
fact that at least two other passages may be taken as 
' summaries ' similar to those mentioned by Professor Turner — 
Acts ii. 47 and xi. 21. But this is a relatively minor question/ 
and the general correctness of the analysis is probable. 

The purpose of the editor, as distinct from the plan of com- The pur- 
position which he followed, is more important and more difficult. Editor. 
It can hardly be described by any simple formula. Few books 
are ever written with a single purpose. The preceding discussion 
shows that ' pure history ' — the correct narration of all important 
events — cannot have been the aim of the editor. It was rather 
that object for which the Lucan writings have always been used — 
to give religious instruction. Therefore, by taking the Gospel 
and Acts as they stand, it is possible to form an accurate idea of 
the type of Christian teaching which he put forward and his 
contemporaries accepted. But before considering this side of 
the matter it is well to notice another, which, even if secondary, 
was probably far more important to the mind of the writer than 
it is obvious to ours. Are not the Lucan writings an apology for 
Christianity to the heathen as well as a manual of instruction 
for the Christian ? 

It has often been recognised that, whatever else was the Acts as an 
purpose of the writer of Acts, he was anxious to defend the chrlgt^^nr/. 

^ See also Prof. C. J. Cadoux, Journal of Theological Studies, 1918, 
PI). 333 ff., and Prof. B. W. Bacon in the Harvard Theological Review, April 
1921. Both these writers go beyond Prof. Turner, and press the chronological 
aspect of the ' i)anels.' Their suggestions are full of interesting possibilities, 
but bear chiefly on the problem of Chronology, which will demand separate 
treatment in the Commentary. Reference may also be made to Moffatt's 
Introduction to the New Testament, pp. 284 ff. Moffatt thinks that the progress 
in the narrative implied by these ' panels ' is geographical rather than chrono- 
logical. More probably it is both : progress usually is. 



Church against the suspicions of the official world. The general 
truth of this view rests securely on the internal evidence of the 
whole book, but it is difficult to formulate, because many facts 
well known to the writer are obscure to us. These are implied, 
but not explained, in the Preface, in which the writer addresses 
Theophilus as ' most excellent,' and endeavours to help him to 
' know the certainty ' of the information which he has received. 
The whole problem turns on these phrases. It may be resolved 
into three questions : (1) Who was Theophilus ? (2) What is 
the meaning of the title ' most excellent ' ? (3) What kind of 
information is impUed by the words -Trepl mv Karij^v^v^ ^ojcov ? 

Theophilus. (1) There is absolutely no tradition of any historical value 
as to Theophilus. It has even been suggested that his name, 
' Lover of God,' merely means ' the Christian Reader.' There is, 
however, no evidence of this custom in antiquity, and it is far 
more likely that Theophilus was a real, though forgotten, person. 
The notes appended to MSS. of the Gospels sometimes say that 
Theophilus was a disciple of Luke (H. von Soden, Die Schriften 
des N.T. i. p. 319), sometimes that he was a man of senatorial 
rank {avyKXrjriKov ovra koX ap'^ovra t'crco?), because he is 
addressed as KpaTKnoq (op. cit. p. 324), but these statements 
are obviously only deduced from Luke, and are important as 
showing the absence of any independent tradition. 

Kpdriaros. (2) The title KpdrL(TTo<i is usual in Greek to represent high 

official position. It is so found three times in Acts — of Felix 
in the letter sent to him by Lysias; and again in the speech of 
Tertullus, and of Festus in the speech of Paul.^ It is also used 
by other writers in their dedicatory addresses, for instance, by 
Dionysius of Halicarnassus, who dedicates his De orat. antiq. to 
Kpariare 'Ajufiate. On the other hand, the adjective is nowhere 
used by a Christian in the first two centuries of a brother Chris- 
tian. It is, of course, scarcely probable that a Roman governor 
had the Greek name Theophilus, but the Greeks were notoriously 
apt to extend by courtesy the application of titles, and it remains 
^ Acts xxiii. 26, xxiv. 3, and xxvi. 25. 


extremely probable that Theophilus was an official of some 

(3) The meaning of Kari^ykw is in itself probably neutral. Karr;x^w. 
It is used in the Church to describe the instruction given to 
young converts, and the interpretation of Acts has been pro- 
foundly influenced by this custom. It is so used in Acts xviii. 25 
of ApoUos. But it is also twice used in Acts of the false informa- 
tion given about Paul by his enemies to the Jews in Jerusalem,^ 
and a variant of the phrase ' to know the certainty ' is also 
twice used of official investigation.^ 

Thus the evidence of Lucan usage does not support the usual 
explanation of commentators that Theophilus was a catechumen, 
thirsting for religious instruction, but rather suggests that he 
was a Roman official concerned with the public safety and legal 
procedure. He had heard stories damaging to Christians, 
perhaps especially to Pauline Christians, and the purpose of the 
writer was to disabuse him of these slanders by putting before 
him the exact facts. 

The questions which would naturally occur to a magistrate's 
mind were two. Were the Christians practising a lawful religion ? 
Were they doing anything by word or deed which called for 
' administrative ' action ? 

The earlier the date ascribed to Theophilus, the more probable 
it is that the question of the illicit character of the Church was 
in his mind, for in the Empire the distinction between a lawful 
and unlawful religion was rapidly being forgotten.^ The theory 

1 Acts xxi. 21, 24. ^ Acts xxi. 34, xxii. 30. 

* See K. J. Neumann, Btr romische Staat und die allgemeine Kirche bis anf 
Diocletian, i., 1890 ; P. AUard, Histoire des jiersecutions pendant les deux pre- 
miers siecles, torn. i. ; also his article on " La situation legale des Chretiens pen- 
dant les deux premiers siecles " {Revue des questions historiques, 1896, pp. off.); 
L. Guerin, " ^fitude sur le fondement juridique des persecutions dirigees contre 
les Chretiens pendant les deux premiers siecles de notre ere " {Revue hist, dc droit 
fran^ais et etranger, 1895, pp. 713 ff.) ; J. E. Weis, Christenverfolgungen, 1899 ; 
Th. Mommsen, Historische Zeitschrift, 1890, S. 389 ff. ; Romisches Strafrecht, 
1899; E. G. Hardy, Christianity and the Roriian Government, 1894; W. M. 
Ramsay, The Church in the Roman Empire before 170 (1893) ; A. Linsenmayer, 
Die Bekdmjifung des Christentums durch den romischen Staat, 1905, 


was that all religions were forbidden unless they had been 
definitely sanctioned ; but, in the Provinces especially, the 
general principle was to accept any local cult, provided it con- 
tained nothing detrimental to good order. Still, to be able to 
prove that a religion was lawful was a point which any apologist 
would be likely to make. 

How could a Christian do this ? No religion could in practice 
expect to be tolerated unless it was that of a recognised ' race ' 
of men, and no new religion could be licensed. This explains 
why all the Apologists, except Aristides, argue that Christianity 
is the true religion of Israel, and Aristides tries to cover the same 
point by arguing that the Christians are a ' new race,' and 
therefore — so it is implied — have a right to a new religion. 

That Luke has anticipated the Apologists in this respect can 
be seen in the Gospel as well as in Acts. 
The Gospel The preface to the Gospel is so worded as to lead the reader 
Apology, to suspect that he is about to peruse an ordinary work by a 
literary man of the period, but suddenly he finds the author 
adopting the Hebraic style of a native of Palestine. It may 
be that at this point he is translating from a Semitic source, 
but in any case he introduces Theophilus in this manner to the 
first stage of his argument, the origin of the new faith in the 
Temple at Jerusalem. In contradiction to Matthew, who 
desires to emphasise that Jesus was born as Christ, in accordance 
with prophecy, at Bethlehem, the Third Gospel dwells on 
the connection both of the Forerunner and of Jesus with the 
Temple. The scene opens with the ministration of Zacharias 
in the Sanctuary ; and the Temple, throughout the first two 
chapters, is always the background. The predictions of the 
future glories of the di^dne child clearly foreshadow the attributes 
of the risen Lord in Acts. Thus the promises made by Gabriel to 
Mary at the Annunciation are that the child shall be great and 
shall be called y /09 v-^icttou, he shall sit upon the throne of David 
his father, and he shall be called vt,6<; Oeov. The Virgin is to con- 
ceive when the Holy Spirit comes upon her {Trvevfia a^iov eVeXev- 


a-erat eirl ere). In the Maf/nificat we have an undoubted echo of 
Hannah's song on the birth of Samuel, who was destined to be 
the prophet dehverer of Israel, and in i. 54 the words avreXd/Sero 
IcrparjX TraiSo? aurov are a reminder of the passages in Isaiah 
which lead up to the revealing of the ' servant of Jehovah.' In 
the Benedictus a similar note is struck. The ' horn of salva- 
tion ' is to arise from the House of David, KaOco^ eXakT^aev Bia 
aTO/j,aro<i rdov dyicov dir alwvo'i TrpocpTjrcJv avrov, and it is the 
sign of salvation from our enemies. In hke manner the angels 
announce that a Saviour is born 09 ia-rip ■)(^piar6<; KvpLo<;, and 
Simeon on seeing the child Jesus calls him to acoTijpiov aou 

The point throughout is that Jesus and his work are the 
proper culmination of the history of Israel, foretold by the 
prophets, and by those who represent the true leadership of the 

In the succeeding chapters of the Gospel and in Acts the key- 
note is the unity of the progress of the Gospel inaugurated by 
Jesus, continued by the Twelve, and carried to the ends of the 
world by Paul. The difficulty lay in bridging the gulf which 
separated the Pauhne teaching and the primitive Christian 
message. Paul as presented in the Lucan literature is not the Paul 
self-revealed in his epistles, a man relying on his own spiritual 
experiences, and almost fiercely independent of those of others ; 
but an earnest missionary, scrupulously deferential to the 
authority of those older than himself in the faith. We are 
more impressed by the ' correctness ' of Paul's attitude than 
by his greater qualities. He is scrupulous in offering the 
Gospel in due order, seeking out the synagogue directly he arrives 
in a new city. His conduct to the Church of Jerusalem is repre- 
sented as irreproachable, his attitude towards the Jews is beyond 
criticism, the concluding chapters are mostly devoted to forensic 
matter, that is, to speeches proving the legality of Paul's position. 
Nothing to all appearance could be a more unexpected sequel 
to the story of the preaching and death of Jesus and the signs 


following the Resurrection than the defence of Paul in Acts, 
yet it is germane to the argument of the author. He is anxious 
to show the unity between Israel and Jesus, Jesus and the Twelve, 
the Twelve and Paul in order to establish the legitimacy of 
Christianity as the religion of the Chosen People. Therefore he 
obviously schematises the stories of Jesus, of Peter, and of Paul 
so as to bring out the parallehsm between them. 

Just as in Acts Paul begins his ministrations everywhere 
in the synagogue, so in the section peculiar to Luke had Jesus 
done before him ; and as at Lystra Paul was dragged e^co 
T?79 TToXeco? to be stoned, so had it been with Christ at 
Nazareth.^ The writer of the Gospel is naturally bound by his 
sources, and possibly by tradition, as to his manner of relating 
the story of Jesus ; yet when he comes to the appointment of 
the Twelve he carefully disconnects it from the mission to 
Jews only, as in Matthew x., and gives the incident an addi- 
tional importance by stating ^ that Jesus bestowed on them 
the name of ' apostles ' (0&9 Kal airoaroXovi oopofiaaev). Just 
as Barnabas and Saul were chosen for the mission to Gentile 
lands after prayer, so were the Twelve selected after Jesus 
had been hiawKTepevwv iv ry Trpocrev^'p rod deov. The mtro- 
duction to the discourse in chapter vi. differs significantly from 
that to the Sermon on the Mount, in which Jesus, like another 
Moses, goes up into the mountain, followed by his disciples. 
In ' Luke ' Jesus chose (e/cXe^a/iet'o?) the apostles on the mountain, 
and came down with them {Kara^a<i [xer avrwv) to give his 
instruction with his disciples to the multitude. Here the design 
of ' Luke ' is evident. He represents the Twelve as the official 
preachers of the Gospel, descending with the Master when he 
proclaims its moral principles. The same appears in the dis- 
course itself. In Matthew it is the interpretation of the Law 

^ "iiffre KaraKprj/xviaai avrov. In the Mishua (Sanhediin) the man to be stoned 
was cast down before he was stoned, with the idea that he might be killed by 
the fall. 

2 So also in Mark ; but the text is here doubtful, and may be an accommoda- 
tion to Luke. 


by Jesus, whereas in ' Luke ' it is a missionary address in 
which the Law is not mentioned or quoted. ' Luke ' is careful 
to show that in his opinion the apostolate was a permanent and 
not a temporary office, as is implied by Matthew ; for, whereas 
Matthew makes the selection of the Twelve precede the discourse 
about preaching in Palestine ' to the lost sheep of the house of 
Israel,' Luke connects it with the sermon which contains the 
essence of a world-wide propaganda. 

Although the other evangelists mention the preaching of 
Jesus from town to town, they do not appear to do so with 
the set purpose, seen in the Third Gospel as compared with 
Acts, showing that the missionary work of the Apostles was in 
conformity with the precedent set by Jesus. 

But, it might have been said, the Jews rejected Jesus and 
his followers. How, then, could Christianity be the true rehgion 
of Israel ? The answer which the writer seems to suggest is the 
traditionally Christian one, that the Jew^s had always rejected 
the teachers whom God had raised up. Their treatment of Jesus 
was unjustifiable ; Pilate and Herod did not condemn him, they 
only yielded to pressure. The righteous man in the Sanhedrin, 
Joseph of Arimathea, had opposed his execution^ and given 
him honourable burial, but his colleagues had gone their wicked 
way, as their fathers had done. Similarly in Acts, Gamaliel, 
the most prominent Jewish teacher, befriends the Apostles, 
though the priests persecuted them as far as they dared. Stephen 
is condemned and stoned, and his defence is nothing but a long 
argument to show that this is exactly what the Jews might 
have been expected to do ; it confirmed rather than refuted the 
claim of the Church to be the true Israel. 

So also Paul is accused by the Jews, but supported by the 
Pharisees and by King Agrippa ; and in Rome the prophets are 
quoted to show that nothing but the obstinate refusal to recognise 
their own rehgion could be expected from the nation. 

The conclusion is obvious : the writer desires Theophilus to 

^ A point, be it noted, peculiar to Luke. 


understand tlie claim of the Churcli to be tlie true Israel, and 
consequently that its worship was lawful in the Roman Empire. 

Equally plain is the running stream of suggestion that the 
Church was harmless, had always been found so, and could not 
justly be punished. A comparison of the trial of Jesus in Mark 
with that in Luke shows how strongly Luke brings out the 
favourable judgment of Pilate. The same purpose is naturally 
less visible in the early chapters of Acts, but even there the 
general description of the Church seems calculated to disarm 
criticism. In the story of Paul it is very plain. 

He was the subject of constant persecution but in no instance 
has it so much as a show of legality. On the contrary, all 
who are in authority, notably the Roman officials, are made 
to show him marked consideration. Until the Council of 
Jerusalem he and Barnabas are not molested save by the envy 
of the Jews, who stir up the people and drive them from city 
to city, and at Lystra Paul is stoned by the mob but is not 
seriously hurt.^ The only Roman mentioned in this section 
is the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, who became a behever. 

Paul's second journey (ch. xvi. ff.) is marked by persecution. 
At Phihppi he is accused as a disturber of the peace and of 
introducing customs which it was unlawful for Romans to observe. 
He and Silas, however, complained that they were unjustly 
imprisoned and scourged as men who had not been condemned, 
and pleaded their Roman citizenship so that they were at their 
insistence pubUcly acquitted. It appears indeed to be the 
point of the whole story to show that they were absolutely 
guiltless of the charge of rioting or teaching unlawful practices.^ 
At Thessalonica Jason, their host, was accused of harbouring 
men who were violating the law and proclaiming Jesus a 

^ Acts xiv. 19-20. Paul was supposed to be dead. He was stoned in a 
riot, but when the disciples stood round him he arose and went into the city. 
The incident recalls the escape of Jesus at Nazareth, Luke iv. 28-30. 

- Acts xvi. 37 Seipavres i]fxS.s STjfiocrig, dKaraKpLrovs . . . /cat vOi/ \d6pq. 
"^lu-ds iKlidWovaiv. The contrast is between the public nature of the insult 
and the privacy of the would-be apology on the part of the magistracy. 


rival emperor {^aatkea). The politarclis dismiss the charge 
as absmrd, take security of Jason and set them at liberty .^ 
At Corinth Gallio declares that he can take no cognisance of 
purely Jewish disputes and refuses to hear the charges made 
against Paul. At Ephesus the Asiarchs protect Paul by sending 
their advice that he should not show himself in the theatre, 
and the town-clerk {ypafifxaTev<i) pointedly acquits Gaius and 
Aristarchus, who were brought before him, of being temple 
robbers or blasphemers of the goddess Artemis. 

The section xxi. 14-xxvi, 32 is a defence of the legality 
of Paul's position. In deference to the desire of the Jewish 
Christians he had consented to bear the expenses of certain 
brethren in discharge of vows they had taken. On being seen 
in the Temple he was attacked by the fanatical Jews and accused 
of bringing heathen Greeks into the Temple. This was a 
capital charge, but the Jews, and apparently the high priest, 
were determined to have Paul killed whether guilty or not, 
and a band of assassins was formed to slay him. Paul, who had 
declared himself to be a Roman citizen, was carefully protected 
from injury by Claudius Lysias and sent under a strong guard 
to Felix the procurator at Caesarea. As has been already stated, 
his defence to the Jews was that as a Pharisee he had always 
observed the Law. Before FeKx he was charged by Tertullus 
with being a disturber of the peace throughout the Empire, a 
leader of the faction of the Nazarenes, and one who had tried 
to pollute the Temple at Jerusalem.^ Paul's answer was 
virtually that the Jews had no proof, as they had not produced 
the Asiatic Jews, the only witnesses whose testimony would 
have been of service to them.^ Felix is represented as knowing 
too much about the new religion {aKpi^earepov elBax; ra -nepl t?]<; 

^ Acts xvii. 5 fl. 

* Acts xxiv. 5-6. Paul is accused generally as a disturber of the peace, 
as the head of the Nazarenes, and particularly of trying to pollute the Temple. 
Note Tertullus does not charge him, as did the Jews (xxi. 28), with having 
actually done so. 

' Acts xxiv. 19 


oSov) to listen to this charge and to have kept Paul under arrest 
merely because he hoped to extract more money from him. 
Festus, his successor, acted with prudence and refused to be 
hurried into precipitate action on his arrival. He offered Paul 
a trial at Jerusalem, and accepted without hesitation his appeal 
to Caesar.i Herod Agrippa next appears on the scene. Being 
a Jew, he was more capable than a Roman of deciding the 
issue. His verdict was decisive : " This man doeth nothing 
worthy of death or bonds. . . ." He might have been released 
but for his appeal. Arrived at Rome, no more is said of the 
charges against Paul. He is simply allowed to live in a private 
house of his own, to receive his friends, to preach the kingdom 
of God, and to teach about Jesus. The meaning of the last 
two verses of Acts is that Paul was either acquitted or allowed 
to live in a house of his own to which his friends were given 
free access.^ 
Sii^nificance "^^^ termination of Acts is extremely significant. The climax 
of the jg ^jjg freedom accorded to Paul. A very large proportion of Acts 
of Paul. has been devoted to the discussion of the charge made against 
him that he was a seditious person who had tried to profane the 
Temple. The Jews had spared nothing to secure his condemna- 
tion. The High Priest Ananias had showed the utmost animus 
in the trial before the Sanhedrin. Yet Felix, venal and unjust 
as he was, desirous as he was to gratify the Jews, dared not 
pronounce sentence against Paul. Festus tried to induce 
Paul to go to Jerusalem to be tried, but was forced to allow 
the appeal to Caesar. Agrippa, a Jew, not blinded by prejudice, 
heard the Apostle and j)roclaimed him innocent without hesi- 
tation. At Rome, even the Jews disclaim all interest in the 
prosecution, and though nothing is said of his trial before Caesar, 
he is left free in his own hired house, at perfect liberty to see 
his friends and to preach and teach his message. Of what 

^ Acts XXV. 12. 

^ Acts xxviii. 16. On Paul's arrival at Rome he was allowed to live 
where he chose under guard, but in 30-31 the soldier who kept him is not 


happened to him later there is uo record/ but the writer of 
Acts might well have added : "So you see nothing could be 
laid to Paul for his preaching Jesus, As a Jew and as a Roman 
he was legally guiltless." The religion which he preached was 
the ancient faith of Israel, rejected by the Jews, only by reason 
of their traditional lack of obedience to the guiding of God and 
of his prophets. It was therefore a lawful religion in the Empire. 
In its lawful pursuit neither Jesus nor Paul had ever been con- 
victed of bad behaviour by a competent magistrate. In the 
capital of the Empire itself, Paul, while still under surveillance, 
had preached without let or hindrance from the authorities. 

The didactic purpose of the editor of Acts is clearer than The 
his apologetic object, and has often been described. purpose of 

It can be treated in several ways, each with its appropriate ^°^' 
advantages. Following the order of theological importance, 
it would be natural to take successively the teaching about God, 
about Christ, about the Spirit, and about the Church. But 
there is much to be said for taking rather the order in which 
the Gentile world would have faced the matter. The first 
question would have been as to the Church. What did it claim 
to be and what was its message ? 

The answer, that the Christian Church was the ancient people The 
of God, was at least as important for the instruction of converts 
as it was as a justification before Roman lawyers. It was 
indeed more likely to be accepted as a privilege than entertained 
as a defence. As has been said already, this point is emphasised 
by Luke more than by Matthew, and far more than by Mark. 
Indeed, the Lucan writings stand out as the earliest documents 
which represent the self-consciousness of the Church and the 
belief that its history was the final development of the divine 
promise that the true Israel should be God's own people. That 
development involved the provision for the changing of the 

^ Acts never tells what happened to any of such leading characters as 
Peter or Barnabas : they simply drop out of the narrative. James only is 
mentioned as being beheaded. 


basis of the promise in the last days, so that the opportunity of 
enjoying its privileges should be extended to the Gentiles, and 
the congregation, or people of God, be no longer on a national 
basis. The Christians, therefore, adopted, in speaking of them- 
selves, the title of Ecclesia, which to Hellenistic ears must have 
inevitably taken with it the claim that they were the chosen 
people, the true Israel. For eKKkr^aia is used in the Septuagint, 
except in Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers, to mean 
the People of the Lord assembled together for common action, 
and it is this use of the word in the Septuagint which is really 
important, rather than any considerations derived from Greek 

This contention necessitated a new series of arguments from 
prophecy, and Acts shows how part of the Christian theology 
was the elaboration of proof texts to demonstrate that the 
promise was not to the Jews only, but also to a congregation 
chosen out from the Gentiles. We have, in fact, the beginning 
of the arguments of the Christian apologists, and of such writers 
as the authors of Hebrews and Barnabas, who desire to show 
that the whole of the Old Testament foretells the Christian 
Church and belongs to it. 
The true Inasmuch as the Church was the ' ancient people of God,' 

it followed naturally that the primary object of the earliest 
Christian mission to the Gentiles was in one respect entirely 
identical with that of the Jewish mission. Both the Church and 
the Synagogue believed in the God of the Jews, held that he was 
the only true God, and endeavoured to turn the heathen from the 

1 Etymologically iKK\y)CT'ia means the assembly ' called out ' from a Greek 
city by the herald, but as is usually the case with well-known and often-used 
words, this origmal sense, referring to the method of the assembly, was com- 
pletely merged in the acquired sense of the persons composing the assembly. 
It translates qahal, but for those who, like the first Christians, took the Septua- 
gint as their sacred book, the fact that it represented qahal rather than 'e dMh 
would be a point of small importance. The word would be familiar to all as the 
characteristic designation of Israel, the people of God, especially m Chronicles, 
Ezra, and Nehemiah. This remains true even though the origin of the word is 
probably the translation of Keneseth, the ordinary word for a synagogue. See 
F. J. A. Hort, The Christian Ecclesia, pp. 3-15 and vol. 1. p. 304. 



worship of idols to his ser\dce. So far as the Gospel and the 
early chapters of Acts are concerned there is of course little 
trace of this propaganda, for there was no controversy on this 
point between Jesus and the Jews or between them and his 
disciples. There are really only four places in which Acts gives 
a direct account of Christian preaching to the Gentiles, and in 
these the worship of the true God is put into the foreground. 
At Lystra Paul begins his speech, " We are men of like passions 
with you, and our message to you is to turn from these vanities 
to a living God." Similarly at Athens the message of Paul to 
the Greeks is that he announces to them the God ' who made 
the world and all that is in it.' It is not until the end of his 
speech that he mentions Jesus, and then not as ' the Lord,' 
but as a man whom God had ' appointed to judge the world.' ^ 
Much the same may be said, though with less certainty, of the 
speech of Paul at Miletus to the Ephesian elders where he sum- 
marises his teaching as ' testifying both to Jews and Greeks of 
repentance (or conversion) to God and faith in our Lord Jesus.' 
Once more, in explaining his preaching to Agrippa II., Paul 
describes his mission to the Gentiles as ' a call to repentance and 
conversion to God.' Moreover, apart from these special refer- 
ences, it must be remembered that to Gentile eyes the whole of 
the Gospel and of Acts would appear as one continuous plea 
for belief in the God of Israel, the claim of whose missionaries 
was justified by history, by prophecy, by miracles, and by the 
resurrection of his anointed servant, Jesus. 

More controversial, and in some ways more important, than Jcrvis. 

^ It is noticeable that this is an example of an unmixed " Son of Man " 
Christology. It seems to us to belong to a less developed form of thought 
than that of the editor of Acts. This is one of the minor reasons in favour of 
the view that there is a documentary source behind the second part of Acts. 
It is well to remember in this connection tliat although there is abundant evi- 
dence that the speeches in the literature of this period are the least likely part 
of any book to have escaped revision, and may even be the free invention of 
editors, it is also true tliat the comparison of Luke with Matthew and Mark 
suggests that he found speeches in his sources, and contented himself with 
comparatively small revisions. 


the preacliing of the true God, which marked the connection of 
the Church with Judaism, was a change in the view held as to 

Two points stand out here as characteristic of the Lucan 
writings. Though Jesus is the Son of God, Messiah, the Davidic 
King, and the Son of man, these titles and their implications 
come from the sources used in the Gospel or in Acts. They are 
accepted by the writer and are not peculiar to him. But in no 
writing certainly earlier than Luke is the statement to be found 
that Jesus was the Son of God because he was born of the Virgin 
Mary by the operation of the Holy Spirit.^ In Mark the divine 
sonship of Jesus begins at the Baptism. ^ It is true that the 
Lucan view is also held in Matthew, but it is less emphasised ; 
and it is by no means certain that Luke is later than, still less 
dependent on, Matthew. Thus Luke is clearly differentiated 
from Mark on the one hand and from John on the other by his 
doctrine of the Divine generation of the Son by birth from the 
Holy Spirit and Virgin Mary,^ not by the descent of the Spirit 
at the Baptism, nor by eternal pre-existence as in Johannine 

Equally important and equally characteristic of Luke is the 

1 Luke i. 35. Cf. Vol. I. pp. 398 and 400. 

^ The words in Mark i. 9 ff. can originally have meant nothing but that Jesus 
became at the Baptism the Son of God by the impartation to him of the Holy 
Spirit. Only when the nativity stories were prefixed, could it be taken to mean 
that Jesus was then announced to be what he had been in reality from the 

3 See further, p. 200. 

* It is impossible to discuss here the difficulties of a precise formulation of 
the Johannine doctrine, or the history of Christian doctrine on the subject before 
Origan. But it is permissible to point out that a promising line of enquiry 
begins by asking whether John i. 14 used the phrase fj-ovoyevris of the incarnate 
or the pre-incamate Logos. Hort's famous dissertation is the beginning of 
wisdom for students approacliing tliis subject, but it may be added that even 
if the variant in John i. 13 (Ss eyevvrjdr) k.t.\. instead of ol. eyewqdi-jaav) be 
not genuine, it is very early, and thus reflects the behef that the Logos who had 
existed with the Father from the beginning was begotten in time, and so became 
fxovoyevrjs. Jolui holds to the pre-existence of the Logos, but this is not the same 
as the doctrine of the eternal generation. Nor is it germane to the subject 
that the Fathers of the later centuries thought one way or the other. 


sense that Jesus was the living head of the Christian Church. 
This marks the divergence from Judaism, and the self-con- 
sciousness of Christians that even though they are the Con- 
gregation of the Lord they are not the Synagogue of the Jews. 
This is a real change from anything which can have existed in 
the original Jewish community, and is marked by the adoption 
of the title Lord for Jesus. It means that to the writer Jesus 
was not so much the national king of the Jews or the super- 
natural judge of the living and the dead (though he was these 
also) as the supernatural leader of the Church. 

Is it fair to go further and say that to the editor of Acts 
Jesus was the centre of worship or even an object of it ? Here 
again much depends on the discrimination of sources. In the 
early chapters of Acts the centre of worship is God — the God 
of the Jews. Jesus is his holy servant through whose name 
miracles are wrought ; prayer is directed to God, not to Jesus.^ 
It is true that the dying words of Stephen are an appeal to 
Jesus to receive his spirit, but it must be remembered that at 
that moment he was seeing the vision of the risen Lord at the 
right hand of God ; the words are a petition for help, not an 
act of divine worship. " He saw his Master in the skies, and 
called on him to save." On the other hand, the appellation of 
Jesus as Lord, which is certainly characteristic of the editor of 
Acts, was a long step in the direction of deification and con- 
sequent worship.2 

What in any case stands out clearly is that just as the relation 
to the true God marked the ' ancientness ' of the Church, its 
relation to the Saviour marked its ' newness.' The Church is 

1 Cf. iv. 24 ff. 

^ J. Weiss and others seem somewhat to exaggerate the evidence for the 
worship of Jesus by the first Christians. To regard him as a supernatural pro- 
tector and helper — the Saviour — and as one whose name was potent to influence 
God and to conquer devils is one thing, but to worship him witli the same 
worship that is given to God is a different matter, against wiiich all Jewisli 
tradition would have revolted. The question may be raised in this connection 
of the meaning of Revelation xxii. (5-9. Is it ])ossible to avoid tiie identification 
with Jesus of the angel, who announces that he will come quickly, but re- 
pudiates worship ? 


the ancient people of God, but it is also a new thing in the 
history of the world. Of course the writer would have said that 
this was the fulfilment of prophecy and was part of the divine 
plan. In this respect Acts is the logical antecedent of Aristides 
with his startling claim that Christians are a new race. On 
the negative side there is a noteworthy absence of any meta- 
physical speculation as to the original relation between God and 
the Lord. Nor indeed would this be otherwise. The Lord 
was the Son of God ' begotten ' — not ' of his Father before the 
world,'— but ' of the Holy Ghost and the Virgin Mary.' 
The Holy A third point which characterises the thought of the editor 

is the belief that Christians were inspired by the Spirit owing 
to their membership in the Ecclesia and its connection with the 
Lord Jesus. The connection of the Ecclesia with the Lord 
Jesus is implied throughout Acts, as it is in all other early 
Christian literature ; the apostles are specifically his mission- 
aries, and to his service Paul is converted. But it is not less 
plain that the members of the Church were regarded as gifted 
with the Holy Spirit, even though certain points are obscure 
in the view which is presented of the working of the Spirit.^ 
It seems plain that the Spirit is the ' Spirit of the Lord ' of the 
Old Testament, but it is also sent from God by Jesus (Acts ii. 33), 
and in one place it is apparently described as the Spirit of Jesus 
(Acts xvi. 7). This reminds us of the manner in w^hich in Romans 
viii. the words ' Christ,' ' the Spirit of Christ,' ' the Spirit of 
God,' ' the Spirit,' are interchanged, with no apparent difference 
of meaning ; but in Acts the connection of the Spirit with the 
Lord has not quite reached the stage of identification represented 
by such passages, or still more by the direct statement, " The 
Lord is the Spirit " in 2 Cor. iii. 17. Moreover, the apparent 
exchange of usage between ' Spirit ' and ' angel of the Lord ' 
in the story of Philip (Acts viii. 26, 29, 39) suggests the con- 
fusion between angel and Spirit which is noticeable in Hermas 
and Tertullian, and seems to have its origin in a remote chapter 
1 Cf. Vol. I. pp. 325 fE. 


of Jewish theology. There is, however, nothing which really 
enables us to answer the question whether the Spirit was com- 
pletely hypostatised or was regarded as an impersonal element 
sent by or from God. On the one hand, the Spirit ' speaks,' 
which is a personal act ; but on the other hand it is ' poured 
out,' which points rather to the view that it was an element, 
or, to use the customary and convenient phrase adopted by the 
Germans, a, Fluidum. Constant combination of these views, 
inconsistent with each other though they seem to us, is as notice- 
able in Acts as it is in almost all early literature. It is as common 
to say that a man was filled with the Spirit and therefore spoke, 
as to say that the Spirit spoke through the man. 

Psychologically this difference of expression and the apparent 

confusion of views which it implies is due to an underlying 

difference of experience. The prophetic speaker feels that he 

speaks because the Spirit first spoke to him ; the message which 

he delivers is not his own, but that of the Spirit which constrains 

him ; the Spirit is greater than he is, and if there is any question 

of absorption, it is the ' Spirit ' and not ' himself ' which 

predominates and survives. But from the people this feeling 

of the prophet is hidden : to them it is clear that the prophet 

speaks, and the Spirit is looked on as an element which affects 

him in a manner analogous to the working of wine. It would 

be out of place to discuss here the degree of truth reached by these 

theories ; but it is important to notice that the double line of 

thought which is so clear in Acts is not merely due to the survival 

of various forms of primitive theology, though this no doubt 

affected it, but also to the fact that we have the description of 

the phenomena of inspiration from two angles of \asion — that 

of the prophet, who regarded them from the point of view of 

perception from within, and that of the people, who regarded 

them from the point of view of observation from without. 

Ancient and mediaeval theology erected a doctrinal edifice by 

means of the application of logic and metaphysics to the data 

provided by these two descriptions of the phenomena of inspira- 

VOL. II o 


tion, but the productive M'ork of the future will consist chiefly 
in the attempt to go behind these descriptions to discover the 
actual facts. In other words, we are brought here to the territory 
which has been marked out as his own by the student of psycho- 
logy and to that particular part of it which has become famous 
from the application to its dark recesses of the theory of subliminal 

The general conception in Acts is that Christians normally 
receive the Spirit, but not that all their actions are inspired 
by it. It is, as it were, only sometimes that the Spirit takes 
possession of them, and they speak ' in the spirit,' either with or 
without glossolalia, or perform miracles of healing or of punish- 
ment by its means. The Christian is not so much a man who 
is always and entirely possessed by the Spirit, as one who is 
capable of obsession, or, one might almost say, liable to obsession, 
at critical moments. It is, however, not wholly plain in what 
way the editor conceived the means whereby the Spirit was 
imparted to Christians. It was certainly given to the apostles, 
and only the apostles could impart it to others ; but was it by 
baptism or by the laying on of the hands of the apostles or by 
both 1 1 
The Church The benefits derived from membership in the Church are not 
mngdom elaborately stated, but they can be discerned with reasonable 
of God. clearness. The editor of Acts and possibly the source of the 
later chapters agreed with Matthew in regarding the Church of 
the Lord as identical with the ' Kingdom of God ' of which 
Jesus had spoken. That he did so is clear by the passages in 
which the Kingdom of God is spoken of in Acts ^ even though 
in the gospel other passages taken from Mark or Q represent an 
earlier use. In none of the passages in Acts is it impossible that 
the Kingdom means the Church, and in most of them this is the 
most obvious meaning. Nevertheless the phrase Kingdom of 

^ See Vol. I. pp. 337 ff. for a discussion of the relation of the editor to his 
sources in connection with baptism. 

2 Acts i. 3, 6, viii. 12, xiv. 22, xix. 8, xx. 25, xxviii. 23, 31. See also 
Vol. I. pp. 324 ff. 


God is relatively uncommon in Acts,^ and its use ought not to be 
unduly emphasised. 

A further point closely connected with the Church, and The 


emphasised in Acts, but either not found or quite subordinate of sins. 
in Matthew or Mark, is the forgiveness of sins. In the speech 
of Peter in Acts ii. the Messianic prophecies are explained as 
fulfilled by the gift of the Spirit to the Church and the forgiveness 
of sins. In the speech of Peter to Cornelius in Acts x. the con- 
clusion of the whole is the offer in v. 43, supported by prophecy, 
of forgiveness of sins to all who believe in Jesus. In the speech 
of Paul to the Jews at Pisidian Antioch in Acts xiii. the point 
to which everything leads is v. 38, " through him is forgiveness 
of sins announced to you, and from all things from which by the 
law of Moses you could not be justified, by him every believer is 
justified." In his speech before Agrippa in Acts xxvi. he claims 
that his mission to the Gentiles has for its object that " they 
should receive remission of sins and a part among those sanctified 
by faith " in Jesus. Finally, in his last speech to the Jews in 
Rome in Acts xxviii. he seems to treat the Kingdom of God 
of which he testified {v. 23) as identical with the salvation (or 
message of salvation, acorijptov) of God {v. 28). 

The point of view of these passages seems to be different 
from the purely Jewish view of repentance as the adequate 
basis for salvation, which is replaced by the miraculous action 
of the Lord. It is, in fact, not merely forgiveness in the sense 
in which Ezekiel, for instance, connected it with the re- 
pentance of ' turning ' of the wicked, but a complete change 
of nature. 

It is easy to see that this development may be entirely 
due to Hellenistic influences akin to the sacramental view 
of grace which dominated Catholic Christianity and the other 
mystery or sacramental cults of the first four centuries. But 
it is also found in some Jewish sources of the Diaspora, 
notably the Oracula Sihyllina, where the work of bestowing 
1 Acts i. 3, viii. 12, xiv. 22, xix. 8, xxviii. 23, 31. 


miraculous freedom from sin is one of the functions of the 
TbeResur- Finally, it would seem that a resurrection to immortahty is 
one of the benefits offered by the Church, though it is curious 
how small a part is played in Acts by this doctrine. In the 
earlier chapters it is mentioned in Acts iv. 2, but only because 
the Sadducees objected to the preaching that Jesus had risen, 
as justifying a belief which they rejected. Ob^aously there 
was no more controversy between the first Christians and the 
Jews in general — as distinct from the Sadducees — as to a belief 
in a general resurrection ^ than there was as to the nature of 
God. But just as the nature of God became important in 
Christian preaching to the Gentiles, so also did the general resur- 
rection, and it is consequently mentioned five times, in Acts xvii. 
18 and 32, in Paul's speech at Athens, and in Acts xxiii. 6, 
xxiv. 15 and 21, in Paul's defence before the Sanhedrin and 
before Felix, where he contends that in preaching a resurrection 
he was justified by the best Jewish tradition of the Pharisees. 
Clearly a general resurrection was part of the Christian teaching 
which the editor of Acts accepted, but it appealed to him as 
part of the Jewish tradition. The resurrection of Jesus was the 
evidence that Jesus was the Messiah, rather than proof of the 
general resurrection.^ 
Comparison It is desirable, in conclusion, to attempt roughly the task 
^th^other ^^ fixing the general position of this system of theology as com- 
books. pared with that of the other main documents of New Testament 
theology. It is clear that the point which really divides the 
Lucan theology from that of Mark or of Matthew is the con- 
ception of the Church as a community separate from Judaism, 

^ Cf. H. Windisch, Tmife und Siinde im alt&sten Christentum, pp. 34-45. 

^ Of all men or of Jews and Christians only ? 

^ In that respect Paul's epistles are the complement of Acts. He bases 
his argument in favour of a resurrection on Jewish eschatological behef, with 
the addition — where he speaks to the Gentiles — of the clinching argument that 
Jesus had actually risen. Norden missed this point ia Agjiostos Theos, where 
he treats the Resurrection as synonymous with ddavaffia. Cf. F. C. Burkitt, 
J.T.S., 1914, pp. 455 f. 


but at the same time the true representative of the ancient 
' people of God.' That is why Luke, unlike Matthew and Mark, 
was obliged to produce a second book, and not merely confine 
himself to recounting the life and the teaching of Jesus. 

Mark seems to have had the single object of persuading his Mark, 
readers that Jesus was the Messiah, in spite of the fact that 
Jesus himself had not proclaimed this openly. In order to 
establish his case he tells the story of the wonderful deeds of 
Jesus ; as a second line of evidence he quotes the testimony 
given on two occasions by the voice of God, first at the Baptism 
to Jesus himself, and the second time, in identical words, to three 
disciples on the Mount of Transfiguration ; and as a final cor- 
roboration of these two lines of proof he adds the culminating 
witness of God in the resurrection. It does not appear to be 
any part of his plan to suggest that the teaching of Jesus was 
a new law, different from the law of Moses, or that his disciples 
were a new community, different from the community of the 

Matthew accepts the position of Mark, but wishes to go further Matthew. 
and expound his view that the teaching of Jesus had the force 
of a new law. Therefore, while making use of the material 
already collected by Mark he adds to it from other sources all 
that he could find bearing upon the teaching of Jesus, and edits 
this so as to prove his point. His interest in Christianity is not 
that the disciples form a new community, but that they have 
been entrusted with a new law which supplements and takes the 
place of the law of Moses. 

Luke, like Matthew, accepts the position of Mark and wishes Luke, 
to supplement it ; but his supplement is that the Christians are 
a divinely instituted Church, and therefore, although it is as 
necessary to his plan as it is to that of Matthew to repeat and 
expand the Marcan document, it is also necessary for him to 
give the evidence justifying his claims not merely for the Christ, 
but also for the Church of the Christians. It would not, however, 
be fair to say that Luke in this respect necessarily represents 


a position chronologically more advanced than Matthew ; the 
truth is rather that he and Matthew stand for two different 
lines of development, probably in different places. Both of 
them are clearly later than Mark, but we cannot say that either 
is necessarily the later of the two, for neither seems derived from 
the other. 
Paul. More striking still is the fact that the theology of Acts and 
the theology of Paul seem in the same way to represent separate 
lines of development. Even the most radical critics have been 
so much under the influence of the tradition that Luke was a 
pupil of Paul that they have been anxious, sometimes perhaps 
unconsciously, to find traces of Paulinism in Acts. But an 
unprejudiced inquiry rather goes to show that Acts and Paul are 
singularly independent of each other, for sometimes one and 
sometimes the other seems to be the more advanced, and there 
is no satisfactory evidence that either borrows from the other. 

Three sets of facts are especially cogent in this connection. 
As we study the use of the word ' Christ ' in Acts and in the 
Pauline epistles, Paul represents a greater divergence from what 
must have been the original usage of the word than Acts. In 
the Pauline epistles ' Christ ' is almost always used as a name, 
but in Acts, except in certain formulae of belief, ' Christ ' is 
nearly always used as a title, and not as a name. There can 
be no doubt that the Acts stands in this respect nearer to primi- 
tive custom than Paul. 

In the same way in the Pauline epistles the soteriological 
explanation of the death of the Christ represents a more advanced 
type of thought than anything which is found in Acts. In most 
of the speeches in Acts, in which the crucifixion is alluded to, 
there is little or no suggestion of any soteriological doctrine, 
and it is regarded primarily as the wicked act of the Jews. Here 
again Luke seems to be less advanced than Paul, though, unless 
one is prepared to maintain that they both belonged from the 
beginning to the same circle, ' less advanced ' is not necessarily 
the same as ' earlier.' 


Against these two points, which go to show that the Pauline 
theology is in some respects more advanced than the Lucan, 
must be set the fact that the interpretation of the figure of the 
Servant of the Lord in Isaiah as a reference to the Messiah is 
markedly characteristic of Luke and is not found in Paul, although 
one would have supposed that, had he known it, Paul would 
certainly have made use of it to support his soteriological argu- 
ments. It seems, therefore, to be clear that, just as Matthew 
and Luke represent two lines of development in Christian thought 
— though closely related — rather than two points on the same 
line of development, so also do Paul and Acts. 

But the most striking comparison with Acts is not offered The 
by any book in the new Testament, but rather by the Apostles' (>eed.'^^ 
Creed. If the foregoing analysis of Acts and Luke were 
summarised the objects of belief could be stated as follows : — 

(1) God, as 

(a) the Creator of the World, and 

(6) the Father of the Lord and of his People. 

(2) Jesus, the Christ, as 

{a) the Son of God, born of the Holy Spirit and the 
Virgin Mary ; 

(6) the Lord, 

who suffered under Pontius Pilate and Herod, ^ 
died, was buried, rose again on the third day, 
ascended into Heaven, sits at God's right hand, 
and is coming to judge the world. 

(3) The Holy Spirit. 

(4) The Church. 

(5) Baptism, and the Apostolic Laying on of hands. 

(6) The Forgiveness of Sins. 

(7) The Resurrection of the Dead. 

It is scarcely necessary to print the Apostles' Creed to draw 
attention to its extraordinary similarity to this summary. The 
1 Once more the comparison with Aristides is suggestive. 


resemblance is illustrated by the remarks of K. Holl to the 
Berlin Academy in January 1919.^ In this he deals with the 
interpretation of the second article of the Apostles' Creed in a 
manner which was immediately accepted by Harnack and others 
as convincing though new. He points out that the second 
article of the Creed begins with a double description of Jesus 
Christ as (1) rbv vlov avrov tov /xovoyevT], (2) rov Kvpiov tj/xmv, 
and that this double description is then explained by two para- 
graphs each enclosed, as it were, by the repetition of the article, 
TON yevvrjdevra e'/c 7rvev^aro<i a'yiou kol Ma^ta? tt}? irapOevov, 
TON eVl WovTLov YlLXdrov aravpwdevTa koI Ta(f)evra. As Holl 
points out, there is no other document than Luke which treats 
the divine sonship of Jesus as beginning with his birth of the 
Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary. Luke certainly does so, and 
an unprejudiced reading of the Apostles' Creed gives the same 
explanation. There is also no other document in the New Testa- 
ment which treats the Ascension as an event separate from the 
Resurrection. The combination is very striking, and shows that 
the Apostles' Creed is more closely associated with Lucan docu- 
ments than with any others. The fact has scarcely received 
sufficient attention from the investigators of Christian doctrine, 
partly because, at least since the fourth century, the Synoptic 
Gospels have always been interpreted in the light of the Fourth 
Gospel, and the Apostles' Creed in the light of the Council of 
Nicea. The problem which is opened up for the Church historian 
is to distinguish, so far as possible, the traces of that type of 
Christianity which is represented by the Synoptic Gospels, Acts, 
and the Apostles' Creed, from that other great line of thought, 
ultimately triumphant, which is represented by the later epistles 
of St. Paul, by the Fourth Gospel, and by the Alexandrian School 
of theology, and found final expression in the Nicene Creed. 

The pro- Where was Acts compiled ? The oldest tradition, which 

venance of 


^ Sitzungsberichte der preiisdschen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1919, pp. 
2 fE. 


cannot be traced back beyond the third century ,i connects Luke 
with Antioch. This may be a true tradition of the birthplace 
of Luke, the companion of Paul, or an inference from the emphasis 
laid on Antioch in the Acts, or a real tradition as to the place 
where the Third Gospel and Acts were fiist used. There can be 
no certainty on the point, but even assuming that the tradition 
is merely an inference, it is one which the modern investigator 
is tempted to repeat. Antioch is certainly a Church which was 
well known to the editor ; if the foregoing analysis of sources 
be in any degree correct, he was in possession of good Antiochian 
traditions, and — a very significant fact — knows nothing of the 
details of Paul's missionary work until he came to join Barnabas 
in Antioch. The Western text of Acts in Acts xi. 28 which 
introduces a ' we ' clause ^ is probably not original. Still 
less acceptable is the variant in Acts xiii. 1, which introduces 
into the list of the prophets at Antioch " Lucius of Cyrene, who 
still survives," But both passages probably represent the belief 
that Luke was the ' I ' implied by the we-clauses, that he was the 
editor of the book, and that he came from Antioch, so that the 
we-clauses ought to begin in that city, not in Troas. It is prob- 
ably far the oldest testimony which we possess as to early opinion 
about the place to which the writer of Acts belonged ; it is based 
on an intelUgent interpretation of the facts, but it is not con- . 

To have survived at all, the Gospel and Acts must have 
belonged to some large and important Church. The places which 
challenge Antioch for consideration are Jerusalem, Ephesus, 
and Rome. 

There is least to be said in favour of Jerusalem. Nothing Jerusalem, 
in Acts suggests that the writer was a member of the Church in 
that city, except that he used documents which probably came 
from it, and the fact that Acts is a Greek, not an Aiamaic, book 

^ It is first found in Eusebius, but may be taken from Julius Africanus. 
See pp. 232 and 247. 

^'ii]!' 8e TifMuiv ^(p-q ds e^ avrwv ovd/J-ari *'A7a/3os ktX. 


Ephesus. almost suffices to exclude Jerusalem. Ephesus seems similarly 
excluded by two facts. In the first place, Acts is noticeably 
lacking in full or accurate information as to Paul's career in 
Ephesus. The Epistles to the Corinthians show that much 
happened in Corinth and Ephesus, of which Acts says not one 
word. In the second place, the Johannine, not the Lucan, 
tradition and theology are typically Ephesian. These two points 
are, however, not conclusive : it will probably prove that the 
form of Synoptic tradition ^ which is behind the Fourth Gospel is 
precisely that of Luke, and if so, the case for Ephesus as the 
original home of Acts would have to be reconsidered. 

Rome. Ptome is supported by two facts, of which one at least is 

certain. Acts ends with the ' diarist ' in Rome. There is 
therefore a slight — very slight — probability that the diary was 
found and used there.^ So far as it goes, this is certain. The 
other point is more doubtful, though very important. It has 
been pointed out above that Luke and Acts would serve, as no 
other documents would, as pieces justificatives for the Apostles' 
Creed. If it were certain that this creed was really Roman in 
origin, it would be strong evidence in favour of Rome as the place 
of origin for the Lucan writings. But is it certain ? The early 
history of the Apostles' Creed has not yet been fully T\T"itten. 
It was doubtless used in Rome at a very early time in. almost 
exactly the form in which we know it.^ But there are traces of 
earlier forms elsewhere, for instance, the fivefold creed in the 
Epistola Apostolorum,^ and the only slightly divergent form in 
the Der-Balyzeh papyrus,^ of which the latter comes from Egypt 
and the former probably from Ephesus. Lietzmann is, no doubt, 

^ See especially on this point Holtzmann, "Die schriftstellerische Ver- 
haltnis des Johannes zu dem Synoptik," Z.W.Th., 1869, pp. 62 8., and 
Hamack, Lukas der Arzt, pp. 157 ff. 

^ This is Jerome's view (see pp. 236 £E.). But it is merely his guess, he does 
not refer to tradition. 

* For this Marcellus of Ancyra and Rufinus are the chief witnesses, and 
Hippolytus may perhaps be added. 

* C. Schmidt, "Gesprache Jesu," T.U. xliii. p. 32. 

* Revue benedictine, xxvi. p. 34 &. Cf . Th. Schermann in T. U. xxxvi. 1 b, 
and H. Lietzmann in the Berlin Sitzungsberichte for March 27, 1919. 


right in thinking that these simple creeds are more primitive than 
the fuller forms. There are also intermediate variations ; for 
instance, the baptismal service of the Verona fragments contain 
the following baptismal service, unhappily imperfect at the 
beginning : "... manum habens in caput inpositam baptizet 
semel. Et postea dicat : ' Credis in Christum lesum, filium 
Dei, qui natus est de spiritu sancto ex Maria uirgine et crucifixus 
sub Pontio Pilato et mortuus est et sepultus et resurrexit die 
tertia uiuus a mortuis et ascendit in caelis et sedit ad dexteram 
patris uenturus iudicare uiuos et mortuos ? ' Et cum ille dixerit : 
' Credo,' iterum baptizetur. Et iterum dicat : ' Credis in spiritu 
sancto et sanctam ecclesiam et carnis resurrectionem ? ' Dicat 
ergo, qui baptizatur : ' Credo.' Et sic tertia nice baptizetur." 
If, as E. Schwartz and R. H. Connolly have rendered all but 
certain, this text comes from the lost Traditio apostolica of Hip- 
polytus,! we have here a Roman creed of the beginning of the 
third century. But we still do not know whether it originated 
in Rome, and it is therefore valueless as evidence for the origin 
of Acts. The problem may be stated thus : we have in Luke 
and Acts the justification, in the form of a history, of a definite 
type of Christian doctrine, formulated in the Apostles' Creed. 
That creed is a development of simpler forms, possibly at first 
merely the baptismal formula, possibly some such simple five- 
fold statement as is found in the Epistola Apostolorum or in the 
papyrus of Der-Balyzeh. It developed mainly by the growth 
of the statements about the life of Jesus, and these statements 
are all of them justifiable out of Luke and Acts, but not out of 
any other single book in the New Testament. It is therefore 
not unlikely that the development took place in some Church 
which was especially Lucan. Find this Church, and you have 
reason to say that the development of the creed is likely to have 
taken place there ; or identify the place where the creed developed, 

^ Ed. Schwartz, iii Uber die pseudo-apostolischen Kirchenordnungen, Strass- 
burg, 1910, was the first to make this suggestion, which was independently 
reached by Doni R. H. Connolly in his magistral "The So-called Egyptian 
Church Order," in Texls and Sludies, viii. 4, in 1916. 


and you have a right to say that Luke and Acts are likely to 
have been cherished by the Church in that place. Unfortunately 
neither end of the problem has yet been solved. It is legitimate 
to think that, here at least, Rome holds the keys ; but who can 
prove it ? 





The tradition of early Christian writers ascribes the Third 
Gospel and Acts to Luke the Physician, the companion of Paul. 
Whether this be correct or not has been widely discussed. 

On one point there is practical agreement — the author of 
the two works is the same. This seems to be proved by the 
common address to Theophilus, by the description in Acts i. 
of a book corresponding to the Third Gospel, and by the identity 
of the two books in style and language, even in subtle details 
and mannerisms. 

The two points which at first sight seem decisively in favour 
of the tradition prove susceptible of interpretation in such diver- 
gent manners that they are not likely to provide convincing 
proofs for or against Lucan authorship. The ' we ' in certain 
sections of Acts may be interpreted either as due to the use of 
an autobiographical source embodied in the text, or to personal 
reminiscences of the author. The first alternative would exclude, 
as the second would prove, Lucan authorship. But neither 
interpretation of the ' we ' passages is so easy as to be certain. 
Each involves literary awkwardness, for the imexplained and 
abrupt appearances and disappearances of the * we ' are diffi- 
cult, whether due to the author's own presence on certain 
occasions, or to a source which has been otherwise adapted in 
style to the rest of the book. ^Vhen all possible parallels to 
either method of procedure have been collected, it will still be 
doubtful which interpretation is in this case the less unlikely. 

The other ambiguous factor in the problem is the relation 
of the author to Paul. On the one hand, he reveals an intimate 



knowledge of Paul's movements, whether derived from his own 
experience, or from his sources, and a general similarity of 
religious view ; on the other hand, he frequently varies from the 
statements in the Pauline Epistles both in matters of minor 
detail and in general attitude. If his knowledge be emphasised, 
authorship by a companion of Paul will seem a possibility or 
even a probability ; if stress be laid on his ignorance, such 
authorship will appear unlikely. But on neither side is the 
evidence overwhelmingly convincing. It is as hazardous to 
define what a companion of Paul could not have written as to 
determine what one who was not his companion could not have 

In the following sections will be discussed : 

(1) The Tradition. 

(2) The case for the Tradition from internal evidence. 

(3) The case against the Tradition from internal evidence. 

(4) Subsidiary points. 


By Henry J. Cadbury 

I. The Earliest Testimonia 

The tradition of Christian writers since the second century 
has been that the Third Gospel and the Acts were written by 
Luke the Physician who is mentioned by Paul in Colossians, 
Philemon, and 2 Timothy. 

The external evidence which constitutes this tradition is 
given in the following catena of testimonia, which includes 
the principal references in early patristic Uterature to the tradi- 
tion of Luke's authorship of the gospel and Acts. They are 
typical, though not exhaustive. 

The text of the difficult and obscure Canon of Muratori is 
given in unemended form according to the readings of the single 
Milan MS. in which it is preserved. For the other selections a 
modern critical text has been used so far as possible, usually 
that of the two standard editions. Corpus Scriptorum Eccle- 
siasticorum Latinorum (Vienna) and Die griechischen cliristlichen 
Schriftsteller der ersten drei Jahrhimderte (Berlin). 

The translations have been made directly from the text 
employed, but have been compared and corrected by comparison 
with other versions in modern languages. But in quotations 
from scripture the English of the Revised Version has been 
generally used where the same original text occurs in, or 
appears to underlie, the patristic text. 

VOL. II 209 p 


The Canon of Muratori. 
Lines 1-8 : i 

quibus tamen interfuit et ita posuit. 
tertio euangelii librum secando lucan 
lucas iste medicus post acensum ^^pTT 
cum eo paulus quasi ut iuris studiosum 
secundum adsumsisset numeni suo 

ex opmione concnset dnm tamen nee ipse 
duidit in came et idem pro asequi potuit. 
ita et ad natiuitate iohannis incipet dicere. 

Lines 34-39 : 

Acta autem omnium apostolorum 
sub unu libro scribta sunt lucas obtime theofi 
le conprindit quia sub praesentia eius singula 
gerebantur sicuti et semote passionem petri 
euidenter declarat sed profectionem pauli au vt 
bes ad spaniam proficescentis. 

^ This text is that given by E. S. Buchanan in the Journal of Theological 
Studies, 1907, pp. 540 fE. So many corrections are necessary that it is easier 
to print as a whole the emended text, translated above, than to indicate changes 
in separate notes. 
Lines 1-8: 

quibus tamen interfuit et ita posuit. tertium euangelii librum secundum 
lucam, lucas iste medicus post ascensum christi, cum eum paulus itineris sui 
socium secum adsumsisset, nomine suo ex opinione conscripsit. dominum tamen 
nee ipse uidit in came, et ideo prout adsequi potuit. ita posuit et ad natiuitatem 
iohannis incipit dicere. 
Lines 34-39 : 

Acta autem omnium apostolorum sub uno libro scripta sunt, lucas optimo 
theofilo comprendit quae sub praesentia eius singula gerebantur ; sicuti et 
semota passione petri euidenter declarat sed et profectione pauli ab urbe ad 
spaniam proficiscentis. 

It is obvious that many of these emendations are extremely doubtful, and 
many others have been suggested by editors of the fragment. 


The Canon of Muratori, 

Lines 1-8 

... at which, however, he was present and so he set 
them down. 

The third book of the Gospel, according to Luke, Luke that 
physician, who after the ascension of Christ, when Paul had 
taken him with him as companion of his journey, composed 
in his own name on the basis of report. However, he did not 
himself see the Lord in the flesh and therefore as he could 
" trace the course of events " he set them down. So also 
he began his story with the birth of John. 

Lmes 34-39 : 

But the Acts of all the apostles were written in one volume. 
Luke compiled for " most excellent Theophilus " what things 
were done in detail in his presence, as he plainly shows by 
omitting both the death of Peter and also the departure of 
Paul from the city, when he departed for Spain. 



Adv. Jiaer. iii. 1 (Ed. Harvey, ii. p. 6) : 

Et Lucas autem sectator Pauli, quod ab illo praedicabatur 
Evangelium, in libro condidit.^ 

Adv. haer. iii. 14 (Ed. Harvey, ii. pp. 74 fi.) : 

Quoniam autem is Lucas inseparabilis fuit a Paulo, et co- 
operarius ejus in Evangelic, ipse facit manifestum, non glorians, 
sed ab ipsa productus veritate. Separatis enim, inquit, a Paulo, 
et Barnaba et Johanne, qui vocabatur Marcus, et cum navigassent 
Cyprum, nos venimus in Troadem : et cum vidisset Paulus per 
somnium virum Macedonem dicentem : Veniens in Macedoniam 
opitulare nobis, Paule ; statim, ait, quaesivimus proficisci in 
Macedoniam, intelligentes quoniam provocavit nos Dominus 
evangelisare eis. Navigantes igitur a Troade, direximus na- 
vigium in Samothracen : et deinceps reliquum omnem ipsorum 
usque ad Pliilippos adventum diligenter significat, et quemad- 
modum primum sermonem locuti sunt : Sedentes enim, inquit, 
locuti sumus mulieribus quae convenerant ; et quinam credi- 
derunt, et quam multi. Et iterum ait : Nos autem navigavimus 
post dies azymorum a Pbilippis, et venimus Troadem, ubi et 
com mora ti sumus diebus septem. Et reliqua omnia ex ordine 
cum Paulo refert, omni diligentia demonstrans et loca et civitates 
et quantitatem dierum, quoadusque Hierosolymam ascenderent : 
et quae illic contigerint Paulo, quemadmodum vinctus Romam 
missus est ; et nomen centurionis qui suscepit eum, et parasema 
navium, et quemadmodum naufragium fecerunt, et in qua Kberati 

^ This statement is repeated in Adv. haer. iii. 10: "Lucas autem sectator 
et discipulus apostolorum." 



Adv. liaer. iii. 1 : 

And Luke the follower of Paul recorded in a book the 
gospel that was preached by him. 

Adv. haer. iii. 14. 1 : 

But 1 that this Luke was inseparable from Paul and was 
his fellow-worker in the gospel he himself makes clear, not 
boasting of it, but compelled to do so by truth itself. For 
after Barnabas and John who was called Mark had parted 
from Paul and when they had sailed to Cyprus, he says, 
" We came to Troas " ; and when Paul had seen in a dream 
a man of Macedonia, saying, " Come into Macedonia and 
help us, Paul," " straightway," he says, " we sought to go 
forth into Macedonia, concluding that the Lord had called 
us to preach the gospel unto them. Setting sail therefore 
from Troas we steered our course to Samothrace " ; and there- 
after he carefully relates all the rest of their journey as far as 
Philippi and how they made their first address ; " For," says 
he, " we sat down and spake imto the women that were come 
together " ; and he tells who believed and how many. And 
again he says, " And we sailed away from Philippi after the 
days of unleavened bread and came to Troas, where also we 
tarried seven days." And he relates everything else while with 
Paul in order, carefully indicating both the places and cities and 
number of days until they went up to Jerusalem ; and what 
things befell Paul there, how he was sent bound to Rome, and 
the name of the centurion that took him, and the sign of the 
ships, and how they were shipwrecked, and in what island they 

1 The purpose of this passage is to meet the argument of those who claim 
that Paul alone knew the truth. Irenaeus argues that, if that were the case, 
Luke would have known and recorded Paul's secrets, since he was inseparable 
from Paul and as it is he has recorded much that is not in other gospels. The 
heretics who claim to follow Paul have no right to claim more or less than 
Luke records. Certainly they are not justified in accepting part of Luke's 
gospel and rejecting the rest. 


sunt insula ; et quemadmodum humanitatem ibi perceperunt, 
Paulo 'curante principem ipsius insulae ; et quemadmodum inde 
Puteolos navigaverunt, et inde Romam pervenerunt, et quanto 
tempore Romae commorati sunt. Omnibus his cum adesset 
Lucas, diligenter conscripsit ea, uti neque mendax, neque elatus 
deprehendi possit, eo quod omnia baec constarent, et seniorem 
eum esse omnibus qui nunc aliud docent, neque ignorare veri- 
tatem. Quoniam non solum prosecutor, sed et cooperarius 
fuerit Apostolorum, maxime autem Pauli, et ipse autem Paulus 
manifestavit in epistolis, dicens : Demas me dereliquit, et abiit 
in Thessalonicam, Crescens in Galatiam, Titus in Dalmatiam : 
Lucas est mecum solus. Unde ostendit quod semper junctus ei 
et inseparabilis fuerit ab eo. Et iterum in ea epistola quae 
est ad Colossenses, ait : Salutat vos Lucas medicus dilectus. 
Si autem Lucas quidem, qui semper cum Paulo praedicavit, et 
dilectus ab eo est dictus, et cum eo evangelisavit, et creditus 
est referre nobis Evangelium, nihil aliud ab eo didicit, sicut 
ex verbis ejus ostensum est, quemadmodum hi qui nunquam 
Paulo adjuncti fuerunt, gloriantur abscondita et inenarrabilia 
didicisse sacramenta ? 

2. Quoniam autem Paulus simpliciter quae sciebat, haec et 
docuit, non solum eos qui cum eo erant, verum omnes audientes 
se, ipse facit manifestum. In ]\Iileto enim convocatis episcopis 
et presbyteris, qui erant ab Epheso et a rehquis proximis civita- 
tibus, quoniam ipse festinaret Hierosolymis Pentecosten agere, 
multa testificans eis, et dicens quae oporteret ei Hierosolymis 
e venire, adjecit : Scio quoniam jam non videbitis faciem meam : 
testificor igitur vobis hac die, quoniam mundus sum a sanguine 
onmium. Non enim subtraxi uti non annuntiarem vobis omnem 
sententiam Dei. Attendite igitur et vobis, et omni gregi, in 


were set free, and how tliey received kindness there, when 
Paul healed the chief man of that island, and how they 
sailed thence to Puteoli, and thence they came to Rome, 
and for what length of time they remained in Rome, Since 
Luke had been present at all these events, he carefully wrote 
them down, so that he can be convicted of neither lying nor 
boasting, because all these things prove both that he was 
earlier than all those who now teach otherwise, and that he 
was not ignorant of the truth. That he was not only a follower, 
but also a fellow-worker of the apostles, especially of Paul, 
Paul himself made clear in his letters, saying, " Demas forsook 
me and went away to Thessalonica, Crescens to Galatia, Titus 
to Dalmatia ; only Luke is with me." By this he shows that 
he was always joined to him, and was inseparable from him. 
And again in that letter which is to the Colossians he says, 
" Luke, the beloved physician, saluteth you." Now if this 
Luke, who always preached with Paul and was called by him 
" beloved," and preached the gospel with him, and was entrusted 
with handing on the gospel to us,^ learned from him nothing 
else, as has been shown from his words, — how do they, who 
were never associated with Paul, boast that they have learned 
hidden and unspeakable mysteries ? ^ 

2. But that Paul taught plainly what he knew not only 
to those who were with him but also to all who heard him, 
he himself makes clear. For when the bishops and elders 
who were from Ephesus and from other nearby cities had been 
called together in Miletus, since he himself was hastening to 
keep Pentecost at Jerusalem, he testified to them of many 
things and told what must befall him in Jerusalem, adding, 
" I know that ye shall see my face no more ; therefore I testify 
unto you this day that I am pure from the blood of all men. 
For I shrank not from declaring unto you the whole counsel 
of God. Take heed, therefore, both unto yourselves and unto 

^ Or " ia believed to have recorded the gospel for us." 
^ Assuming that horo, as often, sacramenta is for ixvcr-qpLa. 


quo vos Spiritus sanctus praeposuit episcopos, regere ecclesiam 
Domini, quam sibi constituit per sanguinem suum. Deinde 
significans futuros malos doctores, dixit : Ego scio quoniam 
advenient post discessum meum lupi graves ad vos, non par- 
centes gregi. Et ex vobisipsis exsurgent viri loquentes perversa, 
uti convertant discipulos post se. Non subtraxi, inquit, uti non 
annimtiarem omnem sententiam Dei vobis. Sic Apostoli sim- 
pliciter, et nemini invidentes, quae didicerant ipsi a Domino, 
haec omnibus tradebant. Sic igitur et Lucas nemini invidens, 
ea quae ab eis didicerat, tradidit nobis, sicut ipse testificatur 
dicens : Quemadmodum tradiderunt nobis qui ab initio contem- 
platores et ministri fuerunt Verbi. 

3. Si autem quis refutet Lucam, quasi non cognoverit veri- 
tatem, manifestus erit projiciens Evangelium, cujus dignatur 
esse discipulus. Plurima enim et magis necessaria Evangelii 
per hunc cognovimus, sicut Johannis generationem, et de 
Zacharia historiam, et adventum angeli ad Mariam, et exclama- 
tionem Elizabeth, et angelorum ad pastores descensum, et ea 
quae ab illis dicta sunt, et Annae et Simeonis de Christo testi- 
monium, et quod duodecim annorum in Hierusalem relietus sit et 
baptismum Johannis et quot annorum Dominus baptisatus sit, et 
quia in quiatodecimo anno Tiberii Caesaris. Et in magisterio 
illud quod ad divites dictum est : Vae vobis divites, quoniam 
percipitis consolationem vestram. Et, vae vobis qui satiati 
estis, quoniam esurietis : et qui ridetis nunc, quia plorabitis. 
Et, vae vobis cum benedixerint vos homines omnes. Secundum 
haec enim faciebant et pseudoprophetis patres vestri. Et omnia 


all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit hath made you bishops 
to rule the church of the Lord, which he hath established for 
himself through his own blood." Then pointing out that there will 
be evil teachers he said, " I know that after my departure grievous 
wolves shall enter in among you, not sparing the flock ; and 
from among your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse 
things, to draw away the disciples after them." " I shrank 
not," he says, " from declaring unto you the whole counsel 
of God." So the apostles, plainly and grudging no man,^ 
delivered to all those things which they themselves had learned 
from the Lord. So therefore Luke also grudging no man 
delivered to us those things which he had learned from them, 
as he himself testifies, sayiug, " Even as they delivered unto 
us, who from the beginning were eye-witnesses and ministers 
of the word." 

3. But if any should reject Luke, on the ground that he 
did not know the truth, he plainly throws over the gospel of 
which he claims to be a disciple. For through him we have 
learned very many quite important parts of the gospel, as 
the birth of John and the story about Zacharias, and the 
coming of the angel to Mary, and the cry of Elisabeth,^ and 
the coming down of the angels to the shepherds, and the things 
that were spoken by them, and the testimony of Anna and Simeon 
concerning the Christ, and how when twelve years old he was 
left behind in Jerusalem, and the baptism of John and at what 
age the Lord was baptized, and that it was in the fifteenth 
year of Tiberius Caesar. And in his instruction, that which 
was said to the rich, " Woe unto you, ye rich, for ye receive 
your consolation," and " Woe unto you that are filled, for ye 
shaU hunger ; and who laugh now, since ye shall mourn," and, 
" Woe unto you when all men shall speak well of you, for in this 
manner did your fathers also to the false prophets." And 

^ That is, there was no secret teaching. 

^ Possibly the Magnificat, which in iv. 7. 1 is assigned by Irenaeus to 
Elisabeth ; but the loud cry of Luke i. -42-45 may be intended here. 


hujusmodi per solum Lucam cognovimus, et plurimos actus 
Domini per tunc didicimus, quibus et omnes utuntur : ut et 
multitudinem piscium, quam concluserunt iii qui cum Petro 
erant, jubente Domino ut mitterent retia : et ilia quae per octo- 
decim annos passa, curata fuerat mulier die sabbatorum : et 
de tydropico, quem curavit Dominus die sabbatorum, et quemad- 
modum disputavit quod curavit in hac die : et quemadmodum 
docuit discipulos primos discubitus non appetere : et quoniam 
pauperes et debilis vocare oportet, qui non babent retribuere : 
et qui pulsavit nocte sumere panes, et propter instantiam 
importunitatis sumit : et quoniam apud Pharisaeum recumbente 
eo, peccatrix muKer osculabatur pedes ejus et unguento ungebat, 
et quaecunque propter eam dixit ad Simonem Domiuus de 
duobus debitoribus : et de parabola divitis illius qui reclusit 
quae ei nata fuerant, cui et dictum est, In bac nocte expostula- 
bunt animam tuam a te : Quae autem praeparasti, cujus erunt ? 
similiter autem et divitis qui vestiebatur purpura, et jocunda- 
batur nitide, et egenum Lazarum : et eam quam ad discentes 
suos dixit responsionem, quando dixerimt ei : Adjice nobis 
fidem : et eam quae ad Zacchaeum publicanum facta est con- 
fabulationem : et de Pharisaeo et publicano, qui simul adora- 
bant iu templo : et de decem leprosis, quos simul emimdavit 
in via : et quoniam de vicis et plateis claudos et luscos ^ jussit 
colligi ad nuptias ; et parabolam judicis qui Deum non timebat, 
quem instantia viduae fecit ut vindicaret eam : et de arbore 

^ The Arundel MS. reads caecos, which is possibly a correct gloss, for it is 
doubtful whether luscos meant more than this to the translator of Irenaeus. 
But it may represent an original fjLovocp6d\fj.ovs in the Greek of Irenaeus, due 
to confusion between Luke xiv. 13 and Mark ix, 47 or Matt. xvui. 9. 


everything of this kind we know through Luke alone, and very 
many of the Lord's deeds we have learned through him, which 
all use,i as the multitude of fishes, which Peter and they that 
were with him inclosed, when the Lord commanded to let down 
the nets ; and what the woman had suffered for eighteen 
years and then was cured on the sabbath day, and about the 
man with the dropsy whom the Lord cured on the sabbath day, 
and how he reasoned because he cured on that day, and how he 
taught his disciples not to seek the chief seats at feasts ; and that 
we should invite the poor and the sick who cannot recompense ; 
and of him who knocked at night to get bread and on account 
of the perseverance of his importunity got it ; and how while 
he lay at meat in a Pharisee's house, a woman that was a sinner 
kissed his feet and anointed them with ointment, and what 
the Lord said to Simon on account of her about two debtors ; 
and about the parable of that rich man who stored his produce,^ 
to whom also it was said, " This night shall thy soul be required 
of thee ; and the things which thou hast prepared, whose shall 
they be ? " Likewise also of the rich man who was clothed 
in purple and fared sumptuously, and the beggar Lazarus ; 
and that reply which he made to his disciples when they said 
to him, " Increase our faith " ; and that conversation which he 
had with Zacchaeus the publican ; and about the Pharisee 
and the publican who prayed at the same time in the temple ; 
and about the ten lepers whom he cleansed at the same 
time on the way ; and that he commanded the lame and those 
with one eye to be gathered to the marriage from the lanes 
and streets ; and the parable of the judge who feared not 
God, but the perseverance of a widow led him to do her justice, 

^ Many editors put these words in brackets and understand all of the 
evangchsts — as if Irenaeus were here noting that there is beside Luke's pecuhar 
matter other matter which he shares with the other evangelists. Probably 
the reference is to Luke's pecuhar matter throughout and the all is meant to 
show, as below, that the heretics use Luke. 

■" Translating ra yivrjixara (not yew-qiiaTa, see Moulton and Milligan, Vocabu- 
lary of the Greek Tefslament, pp. 123 f.), which lies behind the Latin. 


fici quae erat in vinea, quae non faciebat fructum. Et alia 
multa sunt quae inveniri possunt a solo Luca dicta esse, quibus 
et Marcion et Valentinus utuntur. Et super haec omnia post 
resurrectionem in via ad discipulos suos quae locutus est, et 
quemadmodum cognoverunt eum in fractione panis. 

4. Necesse est igitur et reliqua quae ab eo dicta sunt, recipere 
eos, aut et his renuntiare. Non enim conceditur eis ab his qui 
sensum habent, quaedam quidem recipere ex his quae a Luca 
dicta sunt, quasi sint veritatis ; quaedam vero refutare, quasi 
non cognovisset veritatem. Et si quidem refutaverint hi qui a 
Marcione sunt, non habebunt Evangelium : hoc enim quod est 
secundum Lucam quemadmodum praediximus, decurtantes, 
gloriantur se habere Evangelium ; hi vero qui a Valentino sunt, 
cessabunt a plurimo vaniloquio suo : ex hoc enim multas occa- 
siones subtililoquii sui acceperunt, interpretari audentes male, 
quae ab hoc bene sunt dicta : si autem et reliqua suscipere 
cogentur, intendentes perfect© EvangeUo, et Apostolorum 
doctrinae, oportet eos poenitentiam agere, ut salvari a periculo 
possiut. (See also Adv. Jiaer. iii. 15. 1.) 

Clement of Alexandria. 

Strom. V. 12 (G.C.S. xv. p. 381) : 

XeLTrerai Brj deia -^dpirt Kal fiovw rep Trap avrov Xoyo) to 
dyvaxTTov voelv, KaOo Kal 6 Aou/ca? iv rat? Tipd^eaL tcov 
aTrocTToXcdv aTrofivrj/xovevet tov TLavXov XeyovTa' dvhpe<i 
^Adrjvacoi, KaTa Trdvra to? BeiaLBac/MoveaT€pov<; v/idq decopoi 

Adumbr. in 1 Petr. (G.C.S. xvii. p. 206) : 

Marcus, Petri sectator, praedicante Petro evangelium palam 
Romae coram quibusdam Caesareanis equitibus et multa Christi 
testimonia proferente, petitus ab eis, ut possent quae dicebantur 


and about the fig tree which was in a vineyard which bore no 
fruit. And there are many other things that can be found to 
have been told by Luke alone, which both Marcion and Valen- 
tinus use. And beside all these what he said to his disciples 
on the way after the resurrection and how they knew him in 
the breaking of bread. 

4. It is necessary, therefore, that they should accept also 
the other things that were said by Luke or that they should 
give up these as well. For it is not permitted to them 
by those who have sense, to accept as being true some of 
the things that were said by Luke, but to reject certain others, 
as if he had not known the truth. And if those who are of 
Marcion's party reject them, they will not have the gospel 
(for mutilating, as we have said before, this gospel which is 
according to Luke, they boast that they have the gospel) ; 
while those who are of the party of Valentinus will cease from 
their copious nonsense ; for from this gospel they draw many 
of their occasions for quibbling, presuming to interpret badly 
what he had said well. But if they are compelled also to 
accept the whole, paying heed to the entire ^ gospel and to 
the teaching of the apostles, they must repent, in order to be 
saved from danger, 

Clement of Alexandria. 

Strom. V. 12 : 

It follows then that it is by God's grace and only by the 
Logos that comes from him that we perceive the unknown, as 
also Luke in the Acts of the Apostles records that Paul said, 
" Ye men of Athens, in all things I perceive that ye are very 
religious, etc." 

Adumbr. in 1 Petr. : 

While Peter was preaching openly at Rome in the pre- 
sence of certain laiights of Caesar and putting forward much 

^ As compared to the mutilated Luke of Marcion. 


memoriae commendare, scripsit ex his quae a Petro dicta sunt 
evangelium quod secundum Marcum vocitatur ; sicut Lucas 
quoque Actus apostolorum stilo exsecutus agnoscitur et Pauli 
ad Hebraeos interpretatus epistolam. 


Adv. Marc. iv. 2 (C.S.E. xlvii. 426 fi.) : 

Habes banc ad Antitheses expeditam a nobis responsionem. 
Transeo nunc ad evangelii, sane non ludaici sed Pontici, interim 
adulterati, demonstrationem, praestructuram ordinem, quern ad- 
gredimur. Constituimus inprimis evangelicum instrumentum 
apostolos auctores habere, quibus hoc munus evangelii promul- 
gandi ab ipso domino sit impositum. Si et apostolicos, non 
tamen solos, sed cum apostolis [et postapostolicos], quoniam prae- 
dicatio discipulorum suspecta fieri posset de gloriae studio, si non 
adsistat ilh auctoritas magistrorum, immo Christi, quae magis- 
tros apostolos fecit. Denique nobis fidem ex apostolis loannes 
et Matthaeus insinuant, ex apostoHcis Lucas et Marcus in- 
staurant, isdem regulis exorsi, quantum ad unicum deum attinet 
creatorem et Christum eius, natum ex virgine, subplementum 
legis et prophetarum. Viderit enim si narrationiim dispositio 
variavit, dummodo de capite fidei conveniat, de quo cum Mar- 
cione non convenit. Contra Marcion evangelio, scilicet suo, 
nullum adscribit auctorem, quasi non licuerit illi titulum quoque 
adfingere, cui nefas non fuit ipsum corpus evertere. Et possem 
hie iam gradum figere, non aguoscendum contendens opus, quod 
non erigat frontem, quod nullam constantiam praeferat, nullam 
fidem repromittat de plenitudine tituli et professione debita 


evidence to Clirist, Mark, the follower of Peter, wrote at their 
request the Gospel which is called " according to Mark," out of 
those things which were said by Peter, in order that they 
might be able to commit to memory what was told, just as 
Luke also is recognised to have described with his pen the Acts 
of the Apostles and to have translated Paul's letter to the 


Adv. Marc. iv. 2 : 

Here then is the answer which we give to the Antitheses. 
I now pass to the exposition of his gospel, which is not 
of Judaea but of Pontus and corrupted into the bargain ; 
this will provide the scaffolding for the argument we are under- 
taking. In the first place we assert that the gospel documents 
have apostles for their authors, for to them did the Lord 
himself commit the office of making known the gospel. And 
even if they were merely followers of the apostles, they did 
not work alone, but with the apostles, for as disciples their 
preaching might have been suspected of vain glory, had it not 
been supported by the authority of their masters, yea and of 
Christ ; for it was his which made their masters apostles. In 
fine our faith is based on John and Matthew, it is built up on 
Luke and Mark, followers of the apostles. They start from the 
same principles, namely that God the Creator is one, and that 
his Christ born of a Virgin is the fulfilling of the Law and the 
prophets. It matters little if the arrangement of the accounts 
is different, provided it agrees with the fundamentals of our 
faith, and here disagrees with Marcion. He, unlike us, ascribes 
his gospel to no author at all, as though he felt himself prohibited 
from setting a superscription over the body which he had not 
scrupled to destroy. And here I might make a stand and 
maintain that a book is not worthy of recognition which does 
not hold up its head and come boldly forward, and give no reason 
for our confidence by supplying us with a title and the declaration 


auctoris. Sed per omnia congredi malumus, nee dissimulamus 
quod ex nostro intellegi potest. Nam ex his commentatoribus, 
quos habemus, Lucam videtur Marcion elegisse quern caederet. 
Porro Lucas non apostolus, sed apostolicus, non magister, sed 
discipulus, utique magistro minor, certe tanto posterior quanto 
posterioris apostoli sectator, Pauli sine dubio, ut et etsi sub ipsius 
Pauli nomine evangelium Marcion intulisset, non sufficeret ad 
fidem singularitas instrumenti destituta patrocinio antecessorum. 
Exigeretur enim id quoque evangelium, quod Paulus invenit, 
cui fidem dedidit, cui mox suum congruere gestiit, siquidem 
propterea Hierosolymam ascendit ad cognoscendos apostolos et 
consultandos, ne forte in vacuum cucurrisset, id est ne non 
secundum illos credidisset et non secundum illos evangelizaret. 
Denique ut cum auctoribus contulit et convenit de regula fidei, 
dextras miscuerunt, et exinde officia praedicandi distinxerunt, ut 
illi in ludaeos, Paulus in ludaeos et in nationes. Igitur si ipse 
inluminator Lucae auctoritatem antecessorum et fidei et prae- 
dicationi suae optavit, quanto magis cam evangelio Lucae ex- 
postulem, quae evangelio magistri eius fuit necessaria ? (See 
also De ieiunio, 10 (C.S.E. xx. 1, 286), where the book of Acts 
is referred to as Commentarius Lucae.) 


Apud Eus. H.E. vi. 25 (G.C.S. ix. 576) : 

609 iv TrapaSuaei fiaOcbv nrepi rwv recradpcov evayyeXlcov, a koI 
fMOva avavTippiird icmv ev rfj iiiro tov ovpavov eKKK'^aio, rov 
6eov, on TrpMTOv fxev yejpaTrrat to Kara rov irore Te\(ov7}v, 
varepov he dTroaroXov ^Irjcrov ^pcarov ^larOalov, eKSeScoKora 
avTO Tot9 dvb lovBaicrfMov irLarevaaatv, jpafifMacriv ^^palKol^ 


of its authors which is our due. But we prefer to join issue on 
every point and do not conceal what can be understood from 
our text. For from the gospel writers whom we have Marcion 
is seen to have selected Luke for mutilation. Luke, not an 
apostle, but a follower of the apostles, not a master but a disciple, 
at any rate inferior to a master and so far later than the others 
as he was the follower of a later apostle, of course of Paul. So 
that even if Marcion had introduced his gospel under Paul's 
own name, a canon containing only one gospel, one document 
alone unsupported by his predecessors, would not be sufficient 
proof. For what would still be required is the gospel which 
Paul found and gave adherence to, and was anxious that his own 
should agree with it ; since on this account he went up to 
Jerusalem to become acquainted with the Apostles and to 
consult them lest haply he had run in vain, meaning lest he 
might have not believed as they did or preached the gospel as 
they did. Accordingly after he had conferred with the original 
leaders and had come to an agreement as to the rule of faith, 
they joined hands, and henceforward distinguished between 
their spheres of evangehsation, that they should go to the Jews, 
and Paul to the Jews and Gentiles. Therefore if the man who 
brought the light to Luke himself desired the authority of those 
who were before him alike for his faith and his message, how 
much more right have I to demand for the gospel of Luke the 
support which was necessary for the gospel of his master. 


Apud Eus. H.E. vi. 25 : 

... as having learned by tradition concerning the four 
Gospels, which alone are undisputed in the church of God 
throughout the world, that the Gospel according to Matthew, 
who was once a publican, but afterwards an apostle of 
Jesus Christ, was written first. He published it for those 
who had become converts from Judaism, and composed it 



crvvrerayfMevov' Sevrepov 8e ro Kara M.apKov, ct)9 Ilerpo? 
ix^riyrjcraro avTu>, 7roii']aavTa, ov koI vlov iv rfj KaOoXuKfj 
iTTiaToXjj Sia TOVTCov 6)fxoXo'yr)(rev (pdaKcov " aaTra^erat vjjba^ 
r] ev Jia^vXwvL crvveKKeKTrj koI Map/co? 6 y/09 /xoy ' * Ka\ 
TpLTOv ro Kara Aovkuv , to virb TlavXou iirawovpievov evay- 
lyeXiov Tol'i airo tmv e9vo)v ireTroLtjKOTa' eirl iraatv to kuto. 

Horn, in Luc, Jerome's translation (Migne, P.L. xxvi. 231 &.) : 
Sicut olim in populo Judaeorum multi prophetiam pollice- 
bantur, et qiiidam erant pseudoprophetae, e quibus luius 
fuit Ananias filius Agot : alii vero prophetae et erat gratia 
in populo discernendorum spirituum, per quern alii inter 
prophetas recipiebantur, nonnulli quasi ab exercitatissimis 
trapezitis reprobabantur : ita et nunc in novo testamento 
multi conati sunt scribere evangelia, sed non omnes recepti. 
Et ut sciatis, non solum quatuor evangelia, sed plurima 
esse conscripta, e quibus haec, quae habemus, electa sunt, et 
tradita ecclesiis, ex ipso prooemio Lucae, quod ita contexitur, 
cognoscamus : Quoniam quidem multi conati sunt ordinare 
narrationem. Hoc quod ait, conati simt, latentem habet accusa- 
tionem eorum, qui absque gratia spiritus sancti ad scribenda 
Evangelia prosilierunt. Matthaeus quippe, et Marcus, et Joannes, 
et Lucas non sunt conati scribere ; sed Spiritu sancto pleni 
scripserunt Evangelia. Multi igitur conati sunt ordinare narra- 
tionem de liis rebus, quae manifestissime cognitae sunt in nobis. 
Ecclesia quatuor habet Evangelia, haereses plurima : e quibus 
quoddam scribitur secundum Aegyptios, aliud juxta duodecim 
apostolos. Ausus fuit et Basilides scribere Evangelium, et suo 
illud nomine titulare. Multi conati sunt scribere : sed et multi 

1 See also Eus. H.E. vi. 25. 14, where Eusebius quotes Origen as referring 
in his homiUes on Hebrews to the L\ican authorship of Acts. 


in Hebrew ; second came that according to Mark, who wrote 
it as Peter directed him. And in his general epistle Peter 
acknowledges him as a son in these words, declaring, " She 
that is in Babylon, elect together with you, saluteth you ; and 
so doth Mark my son ; " and third came that according to Luke, 
who had made for converts from the Gentiles the gospel praised 
by Paul ; last of all came that according to John. 

Horn, in Luc. : 

Just as formerly among the people of the Jews when 
many professed themselves prophets, some were false pro- 
phets, one of whom was Hananiah the son of Azzur,i but 
others were true prophets, and there was the gift of the dis- 
cerning of spirits in the people, whereby some were accepted 
as among the prophets, others were rejected as though by 
skilled money-changers ; so also now under the new covenant 
many have tried to write Gospels, but not all have been accepted. 
And that you may know that not only four Gospels but many 
have been written, from among which those which we have 
have been selected and delivered to the Churches, let us learn 
directly from the preface of Luke which is constructed thus ; — 
" Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to draw up a narra- 
tive." The expression " have taken in hand " contains a hidden 
accusation of those who leapt forward without the grace of 
the Holy Spirit to write Gospels. Now Matthew and Mark 
and John and Luke did not " take in hand " to ^Tite, but 
filled with the Holy Spirit wrote Gospels. " Many " therefore 
" have taken in hand to draw up a narrative concerning those 
things which have been clearly known among us." The Church 
has four Gospels, the heretical sects many. Of these one is 
described as " according to the Egyptians," another " according 
to the twelve apostles." Basilides also dared to WTite a Gospel 
and to put his own name in the title. " Many have taken in 
hand " to write, rather, " many have taken in hand " to draw 

1 Lat. Azof; Gk. (LXX.) 'Afiip, Jer. xxviii. 1. 


conati sunt ordinare. Quatuor tantum Evangelia sunt probata, 
e quibus sub persona Domini et Salvatoris nostri proferenda 
sunt dogmata. Scio quoddam Evangelium, quod appellatur 
secundum Thomam, et juxta Mathiam, et alia plura legimus, 
ne quid ignorare videremur, propter eos qui se putant aliquid 
scire, si ista cognoverint. Sed in his omnibus nihil aliud pro- 
bamus, nisi quod Ecclesia, id est quatuor tantum Evangelia 

Haec idcirco, quia in principio lectum est : Multi conati 
sunt ordinare narrationem de his rebus quae confirmatae sunt 
in nobis. Illi tentaverunt atque conati sunt de his rebus 
scribere, quae in nobis manifestissime sunt compertae. Efiec- 
tum suum Lucas indicat ex sermone, quo ait : In nobis mani- 
festissime sunt ostensae, id est, TreirXrjpocfioprjijbevwv quod uno 
verbo Latinus sermo non explicat. Certa enim fide et ratione 
cognoverat, neque in aliquo fluctuabat, utrum ita esset, an 
aliter. Hoc autem ilKs evenit, qui fidelissime crediderunt, et 
id quod Propheta obsecrat, consecuti sunt, et dicunt : Con- 
firma me in sermonibus tuis ; unde et Apostolus de his qui 
erant firmi, atque robusti, ait : Ut sitis radicati et fundati in 
fide. Si quis enim radicatus in fide est atque fundatus, licet 
tempestas fuerit exorta, licet venti flaverint, licet se imber 
effuderit, non convelletur, nee corruet, quia super petram aedi- 
ficium solida mole fundatum est. Nee putemus oculis istis 
carnalibus firmitatem fidei dari, quam mens et ratio tribuit. 
Infideles quique credant signis atque portentis, quae humana 
acies contuetur. Fidelis vero magis prudens atque robustus 
rationem sequatur et verbum, et sic dijudicet quid verum, 
quidve falsum sit. 

" Sicut tradiderimt nobis, qui ab initio ipsi viderunt, et 
ministri fuerunt sermonis." 


up. Only four gospels are approved from which doctrines are 
to be set forth with the authority ^ of our Lord and Saviour. 
I know a certain Gospel which is called - according to Thomas." 
and one " according to Matthias," and several others we have 
read,^ — that we may not seem to be ignorant, for the sake of 
those who think they know something if they know those 
Gospels. But among all these we approve of none except what 
the Church does, that is, only four accepted Gospels. 

These four because in the beginning it reads : " Many have 
taken in hand to draw up a narrative concerning those things 
which have been confirmed among us." They have essayed 
and taken in hand to write about those things which have 
been clearly ascertained among us. The result in his own 
case Luke indicates by his language, in which he says, " Among 
us have been clearly shown," that is TreirXTjpotpopTjfxevoiv, 
which the Latin language does not express in a single word. 
For he had learned wath sure faith and reason, nor did he 
hesitate in any matter as to whether it was this way or the 
other. But this was the outcome in those who faithfully beheved, 
and they obtained that for which the prophet prays, and they 
say, " Confirm thou me in thy words." Wherefore the apostle 
also says of those who were fixed and firm, " That ye may 
be rooted and grounded in faith." For if any one is rooted and 
grounded in faith, though the storm arise, though the winds 
blow, though the rain pour down, he will not be torn loose, 
he will not fall, because the building is founded with solid 
strength upon a rock. And let us not suppose that those 
physical eyes give the firmness in faith which mind and reason 
supply. Faithless are such as believe in the signs and portents 
which human sight beholds. But let the faithful man of more 
judgment and strength follow reason and the word, and so let 
him distinguish what is true and what is false. 

" Even as they delivered to us who from the beginning 
were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word." In Exodus it 

^ Sub persona seems to be best so rendered. 


In Exodo scriptum est : Populus videbat vocem Dei. Et certe 
vox auditur prius quam videtur ; sed propterea scriptum est, 
ut ostenderetur nobis aliis oculis videre vocem Dei, quibus illam 
aspiciunt qui merentur. Porro in Evangelio non vox cernitur, sed 
sermo, qui voce praestantior est. Unde nunc dicitur : Sicut ab 
initio tradiderunt nobis, qui a principio ipsi viderunt, et ministri 
fuerunt sermonis. Igitur apostoli ipsi viderunt sermonem : non 
quia aspexerant corpus Domini Salvatoris, sed quia verbum 
viderunt. Si enim juxta corpus vidissent Jesum, hoc est, Dei 
vidissent sermonem, ergo et Pilatus qui condenmavit, sermonem 
Dei vidit, et Judas proditor, et omnes qui clamaverunt : Cruci- 
fige, crucifige eum, tolle de terra talem, Dei viderunt sermonem. 
Sed absit ut quisquam incredulus sermonem Dei viderit. Videre 
sermonem Dei, tale est quale Salvator ait : Qui videt me, videt et 
Patrem qui misit me. Sicut tradiderunt nobis qui a principio 
ipsi viderunt, et ministri fuerunt sermonis. Clam Lucae ser- 
monibus edocemur, quod cujusdam doctrinae finis sit ipsa 
doctrina, alterius vero doctrinae finis in opere computetur. 
Verbi gratia : Scientia geometriae finem liabet ipsam tantum 
scientiam atque doctrinam. Alia vero scientia est, cujus 
finis opus exigit : velut in medicina oportet me rationem et 
dogmata scire medicinae, non ut tantummodo noverim quid 
debeam facere, sed ut faciam, id est, ut secern vuhiera, \actum 
moderatum castigatumque disponam, aestus febrium in pulsum 
venarum sentiam, ut curationibus cyclicis iiumorum abundan- 
tiam siccem, temperem atque restringam. Quae si quis tantum 
scierit et non opere fuerit subsecutus, cassa erit ejus scientia. 
Simile quid scientiae medicinae et operi, etiam in notitia minis- 


is written, " The people saw the voice of God." Well, surely 
a voice is heard rather than seen ; but for this reason it 
is written, to show us how to see the voice of God with 
those other eyes with which they have sight to whom he 
grants it. Nay more, in the Gospel it is not the voice that 
is seen but the word, which is more excellent than the voice. 
Wherefore it is now said, " Even as the}^ delivered to us who 
from the beguining were eyewitnesses and ministers of the 
word." So the apostles themselves were eyewitnesses of the 
word, not because they had looked at the body of the Lord and 
Saviour, but because they saw the word. For if they had seen 
Jesus, that is, had seen the word of God, in bodily wise, then 
Pilate who condemned him saw the word of God, and Judas the 
betrayer, and all who cried " Crucify him, crucify him," " away 
with such a fellow from the earth," ^ saw the word of God. 
But God forbid that any unbeliever saw the word of God. To 
see the word of God is such a thing as the Saviour says, " He 
that seeth me, seeth also the Father that sent me." " Even 
as they delivered to us who from the beginning were eyewitnesses 
and ministers of the word." We are secretly taught by Luke's 
words that of one teaching the end is the teaching itself, but of 
another teaching the ultimate value is in practice. For example, 
the science of geometry has as its end only the science itself and 
the teaching. But there is another kind of science whose pur- 
pose requires practice, just as in medicine I must know the reason 
and the rules of medicine, that I should not merely know what 
I ought to do, but that I should do it, that is that I should operate 
on wounds, that I should arrange for a moderate and strict 
diet, that I should feel the heat of fevers in the pulse of veins, 
that I should by routine treatments remove, temper, and curtail 
excess of humours. For if one only loiows these things, and 
does not follow them out in practice, his knowledge is futile. 
Something like the knowledge of medicine and the practice of 
it is also in the knowledge and the ministry of the word : " Even 

' TncliKlineifff/pw in the quotation and supposing it to represent Attts xxii. 22. 


terioque sermonis est : Sicut tradiderunt nobis qui a principio 
ipsi vidermit, et ministri fuerunt sermonis. Ut ex eo quod dixit, 
ipsi viderunt, doctrinam et scientiam significari, et ex eo quod 
dixit, ministri fuerunt sermonis, demonstrari opera cognos- 
camus. Assecuto a principio : Visum est et miiii assecuto ab 
initio : inculcat ac replicat, quoniam ea quae scripturus est, 
non rumore cognoverit, sed ab initio ipse fuerit consecutus. 
Unde et ab Apostolo merito collaudatur, dicente : Cujus laus 
in Evangelic est per omnes Ecclesias. Hoc enim de nullo alio 
dicitur, et nisi de Luca dictum traditur. 

Visum est et mihi assecuto a principio omnia diligenter 
ex ordine tibi scribere, optime Tlieopliile. Putat aliquis, quod 
ad Theopliilum quempiam Evangelium scripserit : omnes qui 
nos auditis loquentes, si tales fueritis ut diligamini a Deo et 
vos Theophili estis, et ad vos Evangelium scribitur. Si quis 
Theopliilus est, iste optimus et fortissimus est (hoc quippe 
significantius Graeco sermone dicitur KparicTTo^;)} Nemo 
Theophilus infirmus est. 


Historia ecclesiastica, iii. 4 (G.C.S. ix. 192 ff.) : 

A.ovKa^ Se to ^ev ^evo<i cov ro)v air Ayrto^eta?, rrjv eirt- 
aTyjfjLTjv Be larpos, ra ifketcrra (Tvyyeyovo)'; tu> Havkw, Kal toI<; 
XocTTol'i Se ov 7ra.p6p7&)9 tmv airoaroXcov (jii/jii\r}K(o<;, ?/? airo 
rovTOiv 7rpoaeKT7]aaTO ■v^ut^coi' 6epa7revrLK7)<i iv Bvalv rj/j.iv viro- 
BeljfxaTa deoTTvevarofi KarekLirev /3t/9Xtoi9, Tft> re evayyeXt-w, b 
Kol '^apd^ai jJuapTvperai Ka6' a irapeBoaav avrm oi air ap'^rj'^ 
avTOirrai kol vTrrjperat yevofievoi tou Xoyov, ol<; kul (pijaiv kr 
avciidev airaai 7rapr]KoXov6t]K€vai, kol Tat<i rcbv diroaroXcov 

^ This parenthesis is of course added bj' Rufinus, and it is probable that 
the double phrase " optimus et fortissimus " is also due to his difficult}- in 
rendering Kpariaros. 


as they delivered to us who from the beginning were eyewitnesses 
and ministers of the word." So that we learn that by the ex- 
pression " were eyewitnesses," is meant the teaching and know- 
ledge, and by the expression " were ministers of the word," 
their practice is indicated. 

" Having traced from the beginning " ; "it seemed good 
to me also having traced the course from the first." He em- 
phasises and repeats, since he has not learned by vague report the 
things that he is about to write, but from the first has followed 
them himself. Wherefore also he is justly praised by the apostle 
who says, " Whose praise in the Gospel is in all the Churches." 
For this is said about no one else, nor accepted as said, except 
about Luke. 

" It seemed good to me also, having traced the course of 
all things accm-ately from the first, to write unto thee in order, 
most excellent Theophilus." One imagmes that he wrote the 
Gospel to a definite Theophilus. You all, who hear us speaking, 
if you are such as to be loved by God,i you too are Theophiluses, 
and to you the Gospel is written. If any one is a Theophilus 
he is best and strongest (this indeed is more clearly expressed 
in the Greek word KpuTiaros:). No Theophilus is weak. 

Historia ecclesiastica, iii. 4 : 

Luke, being by birth one of the people of Antioch, by 
profession a physician, having been with Paul a good deal, 
and having associated intimately with the rest of the 
apostles, has left us examples of the art of curing souls that 
he obtained from them in two divinely inspired books, — the 
Gospel, which he testifies that he wrote out even as they 
delivered to him who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and 
ministers of the word, all of whom ^ he says he had followed even 

^ In reference to the etymology of Theophilus — " loved by God." 
- Possibly, " all of which facts," but Eusebius appears to give the ambiguous 
Traai;' in Luke i. 3 the personal force. 


llpd^eaLV, a^i ovKerc Si' aKor)<i oipOaX/xol'i 8e irapaXa^cov 
avverd^aro. (f)aalv 8' &)? apa rov Kar avrov evayyeXtov 
IxyripLoveveiv o Ylav\o<i etwOev, oirrjviKa fo)9 wepX Ihiov TLV0<i 
evayyeXiOV ypd(j)(ov eXeyev Kara to euayyeXiov p,ov. tcov Be 
XoLirwv aKoXovOoiv rov WavXov KprjaK7]<; fxev iirl Ta<i TaXXia<i 
aT€iXdfi6vo<; vir avrov fiaprvpeirai, AiVo? 8e, ov fiefivijrai 
<7Vi>ovro<i errl 'Pix)fn]<; aurcp Kara rrjv Sevrepav Trpo? Tifiodeov 
eTTcaroXijv, rrpSiro^ fiera Herpov r?}? Poi/xalcov €KKX7]ai,a<; rrjp 
iiTLCTico'Kriv -7]S7] Trporepov KXrjpcoOel^; BeStjXcoraf dXXd koI o 
K.Xri/XT]<i, rrj<i 'Vcofiaicov Kal avro^ eKKXTjala^; Tpiro<i eirlaKorro^ 
Karaard'i, UavXov crvvepyo<i Kal avvaOXrjrr]^ yeyovevai 7rpo<? 
avrov fiaprvpeirai. 

Historia Ecclesiastica, iii. 24, 15 (G.C.S. ix. 250) : 

o Be Aou/ca? dp'^ofievo'i Kal avrb^; rov Kar avrov avyypdp,- 
fiaro^ rrjV alrlav TrpovOrjKev Bi rjv TreTroirjraL rrjv avvra^cv, BrjXo)V 
o)? dpa -rroXXMV Kal dXXwv rrpoTTereorepov eTrirerrjBevKoroyv 
BirjyrjaLV iroLija-aaOat mv avro^ ireiTXTjpoc^opriro Xoycoi', dvay- 
Kaioi's uTraXXdrrcov r)fi.d<; ri]^ irepl rov<i d\.Xov<i dfi(f)ripL(rrov 
v7roX'>]'\Jreco<;, rov dcrc^aXi) Xoyov mv avro<i iKavo)^; rrjv dXrjOeLav 
KareiXr)(f>ec €k t?}? d/xa UavXai avvovala^i re Kal Btarpi^)]<i 
Kal T?79 T(bv XoLiroiV dirocrroXcov op,LXia<i ux^eXrifieva, Bid rov 
IBlov TrapeBcoKev evayyeXtov. 


Comment, in Esaiam (Migne, P.L. xxiv. 98) : 

Evangelistam Lucam tradunt veteres Ecclesiae tractatores 
medicinae artis fuisse scientissimum, et magis Graecas litteras 
scisse quam Hebraeas.^ Unde et sermo ejus tarn in Evangelio, 
quam in Actibus Apostolorum, id est, in utroque volumine 

^ Cf. Jerome, ibid. p. 331 (on Is. xxviii. 13) and Quaest. hebr. in Gen. 
(Migne, P.L. xxiii. 1053). 


from the beginning, and the Acts of the Apostles, which he com- 
posed, receiving his information with his own eyes, no longer 
by hearsay. And they say that it was actually the Gospel 
according to him that Paul used to mention whenever, as though 
writing about some Gospel of his own, he used the expression 
" according to my Gospel." But of the other followers of Paul 
Crescens is recorded by him to have gone to the Gallic pro- 
vinces,! and Linus, whom he mentions as with him at Rome, 
according to the second letter to Timothy, we have shown 
above to have been the first after Peter to inherit the bishopric 
of the church of the Romans. Moreover Clement also (he too 
was appointed as the Roman church's third bishop) is recorded 
by Paul to have been his fellow-worker and fellow-contestant. 

Historia Ecclesiastica, iii. 24, 15 : 

And Luke himself also in beginning the work that bears 
his name set forth the reason why he made the composition, 
showing that while many others had somewhat too rashly 
engaged in making an account of the things of which he him- 
self was fully assured, thus expressly freeing us from doubtful 
suspicion about the others, he had delivered to us through his 
own gospel a sure and certain record of what he was convinced 
to be true, aided by his continued and intimate fellowship with 
Paul and by his intercourse with the rest of the apostles. 


Comment, on Isaiah, iii. 6 : 

The ancient writers of the church say that the evangelist 
Luke was very learned in the art of medicine, and that he 
Imew Greek better than Hebrew. And therefore, too, his 
language in the Gospel, as well as in the Acts of the Apostles, 

* Tho reference is to 2 Tim. iv. 10. Where some oi the best manuscripts 
read VaWlai', though some read raXaTlav. Similarly the Syriac version of 
Eiisobius n-ads 'Oalatia.' 


comptior est, et saecularem redolet eloquentiam, magisque 
testimoniis Graecis utitur quam Hebraeis. 

E fistula, XX., ad Damasum (C.S.E. liv. 108) : 

De verbo vero " osianna," quia in Graecuni non poterant 
transferre sermonem, sicut et in " alleluia," et in " amen," et in 
plerisque factum videmus, ipsum Hebraeum posuerunt, dicentes, 
" osianna." Lucas igitur, qui inter omnes evangelistas Graeci 
sermonis eruditissimus fuit, quippe ut medicus et qui in Graecis 
Evangelium scripserit, quia se vidit proprietatem sermonis trans- 
ferre non posse, melius arbitratus est tacere, quam id ponere, 
quod legenti faceret quaestionem. 

Epistula, liii., ad Paulinum (C.S.E. liv. 463) : 

Actus Apostolorum nudam quidem sonare videntur historiam, 
et nascentis ecclesiae infantiam texere : sed si noverimus scrip- 
torem eorum Lucam esse medicum, cujus laus est in Evangelio, 
animadvertimus pariter omnia verba illius languentis animae 
esse medicamina. 

De viris illustribus (Richardson, Texts und Untersuchungen, 
xiv. 1. 11 f.): 

Lucas medicus Antiocbensis, ut eius scripta indicant, 
Graeci sermonis non ignarus fuit, sectator apostoli Pauli, 
et omnis eius peregrinationis comes, scripsit Evangelium, de 
quo idem Paulus : Misimus, inquit, cum illo fratrem, cuius 
laus est in evangelio per omnes ecclesias, et ad Colcssenses : 
Salutat vos Lucas medicus carissimus, et ad Timotbeum : Lucas 
est mecum solus. Aliud quoque edidit volumen egregium, quod 
titulo Apostolicorum irpd^ecov praenotatur, 'cuius bistoria usque 
ad biennium Romae commorantis PauH pervenit, id est, usque ad 
quartum Neronis annum. Ex quo intelHgimus, in eadem urbe 


that is, in both volumes is more elegant, and smacks of secular 
eloquence, and he uses Greek quotations rather than Hebrew. 

Epistle XX. 4 : 

With regard to the word, hosanna, because they could 
not translate it into the Greek language, just as we see was 
done also in the case of hallelujah, and of amen and in 
most other words, they put down the Hebrew itself, saying, 
hosanna. Luke therefore, who was the most learned in the 
Greek language among all the evangelists, since he was a doctor 
and ^VTote his gospel among the Greeks, because he saw that 
he could not translate the proper meaning of the word, thought 
it better to omit it, than to put down what would raise a question 
in the reader's mind. 

Epistle liii. 9 : 

The Acts of the Apostles, it is true, seems to present 
bare history, and to weave the story of the new - born 
church's infancy ; but if we realise that the author of this 
book is Luke the physician " whose praise is in the Gospel " 
we observe that all his words alike are medicine for the sick 

De viris illustrihus, vii. : 

Luke the physician, an Antiochian, as his writings show, 
was not ignorant of the Greek language. The follower of 
the apostle Paul and comrade of all his travels, he wrote 
the Gospel, of which the same Paul says, " We have sent 
together with him the brother whose praise is in the gospel 
through all the churches ; " and to the Colossians, " Lulce the 
beloved physician greeteth you," and to Timothy, " Only 
Luke is with me." He also published another excellent 
volume, which is designated by the title ' apostolic irfju^ea,' the 
narrative of which extends up to the two-year period of Paul's 
stay in Rome, that is, to the fourth year of Nero. From this 
also we learn that the book was ^\Titten in the same citv. There- 


librum esse conpositum. Igitur 7repi6Sov<; Pauli et Theclae et 
totam baptizati leonis fabulam inter apocryphas scripturas con- 
putemus. Quale enim est, ut individuus comes apostoli, inter 
ceteras eius res hoc solum ignoraverit ? Sed et Tertullianus, 
vicinus illorum temporum, refert presbyterum quemdam in Asia 
(T7rovBaaT>)v apostoli Pauli, convictum apud Johannem quod 
auctor esset libri, et confessum se hoc Pauli amore fecisse, loco 
excidisse. Quidam suspicantur, quotiescumque Paulus in epistulis 
suis dicat, iuxta evangelium meum, de Lucae significare volumine 
et Lucam non solum ab apostolo Paulo didicisse evangelium, qui 
cum Domino in came non fuerat, sed et a ceteris apostolis. Quod 
ipse quoque in principio voluminis sui declarat dicens : Sicut 
tradiderunt nobis, qui a principio ipsi viderunt et ministri fuerunt 
sermonis. Igitur Evangelium, sicut audierat, scripsit ; Acta vero 
apostolorum, sicut viderat ipse, conposuit. Sepultus est Con- 
stantinopolim, ad quam urbem, vicesimo Constantii anno, ossa 
eius cum reliquiis Andreae apostoli translata sunt. 

Praefatio in Commentarios in Matthaeum (Migne, P.L. xxvi. 18) : 

Tertius Lucas medicus, natione Syrus Antiochensis, cuius 
laus in Evangelio, qui et ipse discipulus apostoli Pauli, in 
Achaiae Boeotiaeque partibus volumen condidit, quaedam altius 
repetens, et ut ipse in prooemio confitetur, audita magis, quam 
visa describens. 


fore we reckon the TrepioSot ^ of Paul and Thecla, and the 
whole tale of the baptized lion, among the apocryphal writings. 
For how strange it would be if the inseparable companion of 
the apostle should be ignorant of this alone among all his affairs. 
Moreover Tertullian, who lived near those times, reports that 
a certain elder in Asia, a <77rovSaar)]<; ^ of the apostle Paul, 
was convicted in the presence of John of being the author 
of the book, and, having confessed that he had made it out 
of affection for Paul, lost his rank. Some men suspect that 
whenever Paul says in his letters " according to my gospel " 
he means the volume of Luke, and that Luke had learned the 
gospel not only from the apostle Paul, who had not been with 
the Lord in the flesh, but also from the rest of the apostles. 
And this he also declares himself in the beginning of his volume 
saying, " Even as they delivered to us who from the beginning 
were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word." The Gospel, 
therefore, he wrote as he had heard ; but the Acts of the 
Apostles he composed as he had seen. His tomb is at Con- 
stantinople, to which city his bones, together with the remains 
of the apostle Andrew, were transferred in the twentieth year 
of Constantius. 

Preface to the Commentary on Matthew : 

The third,^ Luke the physician, by birth a Syrian of Antioch, 
" whose praise is in the gospel," and himself a disciple of the 
apostle Paul, composed his book in the districts of Achaia and 
Boeotia,* investigating some things from an earlier time, and, 
as he himself confesses in his preface, describing what he had 
heard rather than what he had seen. 

^ Joumeyiiigs. - An admirer. ' I.e. of the Evangelists. 

* Some MSS. read Bithynia (see Monarchian prologue), but elsowhci-c 
Jerome suggests that Luke died in Thebes. An earlier reference to Luke's 
activity in Achaia is in Greg. Naz. Or. xxxiii. 11. 



Dialogus De recta in deum fide, v. (G.C.S. iv. 8 ff.) : 

MEFEQIOS. . . . elrre Be rrpoirov ra ovofjuara tmv 
ypayjravToyv ra evayyeXia. 

AAAMANTIOS. Ot /xaOrjTal rod ^ptarou yey pa(^r}Ka(X iv , 
^l(t)dvvT}<i Koi M.aT6aio^, M.dpKo<i koI Aovko,^. 

MEF. MapKOv Kal AovKav ovk ea'^e ixaOrjra^ 6 ^piaro<;' 
ivrevdev i\€y')(ea6e (pdXaa iroiovvre^. 8id rl yap o'l fxaOrjTai, 
(bv yeypairrai ra ovofxara iv tm evayyeXiw, ovk kypa^p-av, 
dXX" 01 1X7] 6vT€<i /xadrjral ; rt? ovv earl AovKd<i tj Map/co? ; 
T^Xey^Orjre iirl tovtw ovofxara <ov> yeypa/xfxeva iv rrj ypa(f)r] 

ETTPOniOS. "Ei^wv /xa67)Ta<i 6 Xptcrro? ou fxdWov TOVTOif; 
ive-^elpit^ev rj tol<; /x7] overt fxaOrjTaiii ; (fyalverai /xoi tovt ov 
KoXcb'i €^6iv' eSec yap tov<; ixaOrjrd^ avrov^ i/x7riaT€v9rjvat 

AA. ^la6)jTai elcn Kal ourot tov ^ptaTov. 

MEF. Uoirjcrov dvayvuxrdrjvai to evayyeXiov Kal evprjaei^ 
oTi ov yeypairrat, ra ovofxara ravra. 

ETTP. AvayvQxrdrjTa). 

AA. Tmv ScoSeKa cnroaroXcov dveyvcoaOrj to, ovofiara, ov-^l 
Kal TMV oj3 . 

ETTP. Ilocrof 9 ecrx^z' o ^picrTo<; aTroaroXov^; ; 

AA. Tlp(j0Tov<i direaTeiXe i^ Kal fxerd ravra o/3' evay- 
ye\iaaa9at. M.dpKO<; ovv Kal Aou/ca?, ck rcov o/3 ovre^, 
Jlav\(p rm ciitocttoXm avvev^yyeXtaavro. 

MEF. ' ASvvarov on iror elSov ovroL IlavXov. 

AA. AeiKvvfxt aurov rov drroardXov /xaprvpovvra ^IdpKoi 

Kal AoVKCi. 

MEF. Tw acp (f)dXcr(p ov TriarevM drroaroXtKw. 

AA. TipoeveyKe ro drroaroXiKov aov, el Kal ra [xaXiara 



Dialogue on the True Faith : 

Megethius. . . . Tell me first the names of those who wrote 
the Gospels. 

Adamantius. The disciples of Christ wrote them, John and 
Matthew, Mark and Luke. 

Meg. Christ had no disciples Mark and Luke ; so you are 
convicted of forgery. For why did the disciples whose names 
are \vritten in the gospel not write them, rather than those who 
were not disciples ? Who then is Luke, or Mark ? This convicts 
you of bringing forward names not written in Scripture. 

Eutropius. Was not Christ, since he had disciples, more likely 
to entrust the task to them than to those who were not dis- 
ciples ? This does not seem to me to be right, for the disciples 
themselves ought to be trusted more. 

Ad. These too are disciples of Christ. 

Meg. Have the Gospel read and thou wilt find that these 
names are not written in it. 

Eiitr. Let it be read. 

Ad. The names of the twelve apostles have been read, but 
not of the seventy-two.^ 

Eutr. How many apostles had Christ ? 

Ad. First he sent out twelve and after that seventy-two 
to preach the gospel. So Mark and Luke, being from the number 
of the seventy-two, preached the gospel together with Paul the 

Meg. It is impossible that these men ever saw Paul. 

Ad. I can show the apostle himself testifying to Mark and 

Meg. 1 do not beUeve in thy forged apostolicon.^ 

Ad. Bring thy own apostolicon, even though it is mutilated 

^ Some MSS. of Luke x. 1 read 72 instead of 70. 

^ Apostolicon, that is, the group of letters of Paul accepted into a canon of 



TTepLKeKo^fxevov iaTi, koX SeLKVVfii ort Map/co? Kal AovKd<; 
(Tvvr]p'yr](Tav UaiiXoi. 

MET. Ael^ov. 

AA. ^Apaytvooafco) iv to2<; T€\€VTaioi<; T'f]<; 7rpo9 K.o\ocr- 
crael<; TiavXov AaTrd^erai v/j,d<i, ^rjaiv, ^ Apiarap'^o'i, o 
avvaL'^fi/ikwTO'i jxov, koI MdpKO<;, 6 dveylrio^; ^apvdjBa, Trep 
ov iXd^ere ivroXd^ Xva eXOrj 7rpo<i vfxd<;' Se^aade ovv avrov 
Kal 'It^ctoO'? \€yo/j,€vo<; loOcrro?, ol 6vTe<; e'/c Treptrofxi^f; 
ovroi ixovoi fiou elai avvepyol eh rrjv ^aaiXecav rou 6eov 
olTLve<i i'y€V7]6r](Tdp fMoi TraprjyopLa, Kat ra k^rj<i. daTrd^erai 
u/xd^i KovKd<i Kal Arj/jud^. nrapecr'^ov Td<i u7roS€i^€t<; t?}? 
e7riaTo\f]<;, opas ort Kal avro^i o d'iroaT6\o<i p^aprvpel 

ETTP. A-^Xt) 7] nrepl rovrcov a7roSet|^i?. 

Argumentum in Lucam : 

Incipit argumentum euangelii secundum Lucam. Lucas 
Syrus natione Antioctensis, arte medicus, discipulus aposto- 
lorum, postea Paulum secutus usque ad confessionem eius, 
seruiens deo sine crimine. Nam neque uxorem umquam 
iiabens neque filios Ixxiiii annorum obiit in Bithynia plenus 
spiritu sancto. Qui cum iam descripta essent euangelia per 
Mattheum quidem in ludaea, per Marcum autem in Italia, 
sancto instigante spiritu in Achaiae partibus hoc scripsit 
euangelium, significans etiam ipse in principio ante alia esse 
descripta. Cui extra ea quae ordo euangelicae dispositionis 
exposcit, ea maxime necessitas fuit laboris, ut primum Graecis 

^ The origin of these Prologues is not certain, but the most popular theory, 
advocated especially by Dom Chapman, attributes them to Priscillian. Zahn, 
however, now (Kommentar zum N.T. iii. 738 ff. ; cf. 13 ii.) prefers G. Morin's 
guess of the Priscilhanist Instantius. But — what is more important — revers- 
ing the usual theories of their relation, he believes that the shorter Latin 
version is earlier than the Monarchian, and that the Greek version is the 
original of the short Latin one. This would carry the principal elements of 
the tradition about Luke (as distinct from the Priscillianist theology) back 
to at least 330-3.50 a.b. It is fortunately not necessary for the present 


very extensively, and I can show that Mark and Luke worked 
together with Paul. 

Meg. Show me. 

Ad. I am reading in the closing part of Paul's letter to 
the Colossians ; " Aristarchus my fellow-prisoner," he says, 
" saluteth you, and Mark the cousin of Barnabas (touching whom 
ye received commandments that he should come to you ; there- 
fore receive him), and Jesus that is called Justus, who are of 
the circumcision : these only are my fellow-workers unto the 
Kingdom of God, men that have been a comfort unto me," and 
so forth. " Luke and Demas salute you." I have supplied 
the proofs of the epistle. Thou seest that the apostle himself 
testifies to them. 

Eutr. The proof in their case is clear. 


' Monarchian ' Prologue to Luke. 

Luke, a Syrian of Antioch by nation, by profession a 
physician, a disciple of the Apostles, later followed Paul until 
his confession, serving God without blame. For he never had 
wife or children, and died at the age of seventy-four in Bithynia, 
full of the Holy Ghost. 'V\Tien Gospels had already been written, 
by Matthew in Judaea and by Mark in Italy, at the instigation 
of the Holy Spirit he wrote this Gospel in the parts of Achaia, 
and he also signified in the commencement that others had 
previously been written. Apart from the demand made by the 
order of the disposition of the Gospels [which made his Gospel 
necessary] the principal object of his toil was that he should 
labour that the Greek faithful might, by the manifestation of 

purposs to discuss the exact meaning of the Prologue to Luko, which is hard 

to understand and even harder to translate. After rejecting several attempts 
of their own the editors and Dr. Cadbury liave thought it best to reproduce 
Dom Chapman's text and rendering, but those interested in the translation or 
interpretation should road Corssen, Tcxte und Untersuchungeii, xv. 1., and Dom 
Chapman's discussion in his Early History of the Vulgate Gospels, 


fidelibus omni perfectione venturi in carnem dei manifestata, ne 
ludaicis fabulis intenti in solo legis desiderio tenerentur vel ne 
hereticis fabulis et stultis sollicitationibiis seducti excederent 
a veritate, elaboraret ; dehinc ut in principio euangelii lohannis 
natiuitate praesumpta, cui euangelium scriberet et in quo electus 
scriberet, indicaret, contestificans in se completa esse quae essent 
ab aliis inchoata. Cui ideo post baptismum filii Dei a perfec- 
tione generationis in Christo impletae et repetendae a principio 
nativitatis buraanae potestas permissa est, ut requirentibus 
demonstraret, in quo adprehendens erat, per Nathan filium 
introitu recurrentis in deum generationis adniisso indispartibilis 
deus ut, praedicans in hominibus Christum suum perfecti opus 
hominis redire in se per filium faceret, qui per Dauid patrem 
venientibus iter praebebat in Christo. Cui Lucae non inmerito 
etiam scribendorum apostolicorum actuum potestas in mini- 
sterio datur, ut deo in deum pleno ac filio proditionis extincto 
oratione ab apostolis facta sorte domini electionis numerus com- 
pleretur, sicque Paulus consummationem apostolicis actibus 
daret, quern diu contra stimulos recalcitrantem dominus elegisset. 
Quod legentibus ac requirentibus deum etsi per singula expediri 
a nobis utile fuerat, scientes tamen, quod operantem agricolam 
oporteat de fructibus suis edere, vitamus publicam curiositatem, 
ne non tarn demonstrare volentibus deum videremur quam 
fastidientibus prodidisse. Explicit argumentum evangelii 
secundum Lucam. 


all the perfection of God coming in the flesh, be prevented from 
giving themselves to the study of Jewish fables, and from being 
held by the desire of the law only, and that they might not be 
seduced by heretical fables and foolish questions, and so depart 
from the truth. And further, that in the beginning of his Gospel, 
having first given the birth of John, he might point out for whom 
[viz., for Theophilus] he WTote his Gospel, and the purpose of 
his election to write it, attesting that what was begun by the 
others was finished in him. To him power was granted after 
the baptism of the Son of God [Luke iii.] to reckon back the 
human birth from its beginning, starting from the perfection of 
the generation fulfilled in Christ, in order that he might show 
forth to seekers (in that he had himself apprehended), by admit- 
ting into the list the entrance of a genealogy running back to 
God through the son Nathan, how the indivisible God, pro- 
claiming His Christ among men, has made the work of the 
perfect man return to Himself by the son of David — He who by 
David the father offered in Christ a way to those who came to 
Him. To this Luke ministerial power was deservedly given of 
also writing the Acts of the Apostles, that God being full in God, 
and the son of perdition being dead, after prayer had been made 
by the Apostles, the number of election (twelve apostles) might 
be made complete by the lot of the Lord, and that thus Paul 
might supply the consummation of the Acts of the Apostles,^ 
whom the Lord chose after he had long kicked against the pricks. 
And though it had been useful for us to explain this in detail 
for readers and seekers after God, yet knowing that the working 
husbandman ought to eat the fruits of his own labour, we avoid 
the curiosity of the public, lest we should appear less to be re- 
revealing God to the desirous, than to have betrayed Him to 

^ Or, reading Paulum, " that he might give Paul aa the consummation (the 
thirteenth Apostle) to the Acts of the Apostles." That this is the true reading 
is attested by the Prologue to Acts. See Cliapman, eh. xiv. p. 255. 


II. Luke m Later Tradition 

Many accounts of Luke, later than the testimonia given aboxe, 
occur in church histories, commentaries, church calendars, lists 
of apostles, saints, or martyrs, and in New Testament manu- 
scripts. One of the earHer is given in " The Doctrine of 
the Apostles," from Ancient Syriac Documents, edited by W. 
Cureton (1864), pp. 34 fE. " Byzantium, and all the country 
of Thrace, and its environs, even to the great river, the 
border which separates between the Barbarians, received the 
Apostles' Hand of Priesthood from Luke the Apostle, who built a 
Church there, and ministered there in his office of Ruler and Guide 
there. . . . But Luke the Evangelist had this diligence, and wrote 
the Triumphs of the Acts of the Apostles, and the Ordinances 
and Laws of the ministry of their Priesthood, and whither each 
one of them went. By his diligence, therefore, Luke •wrote 
these things, and more than these, and he placed them in the 
hand of Priscus and Acquilas, his disciples ; and they accom- 
panied him even up to the day of his death : like as Timothy 
and Erastus, of Lystra and Menaus, the first disciples of the 
Apostles, accompanied Paul until he went up to the city of 
Rome, because he had withstood the orator Tertullus. And 
Nero the Emperor slew him with the sword, and Simon 
Cephas, in the city of Rome." This heterogeneous material is 
conveniently summarised in R. A. Lipsius, Die ajpokryphen 
Apostelgeschichten und Apostellegenden, II. ii. (1884), pp. 354-371, 
and T. Schermann, " Propheten- und Apostellegenden," in Texte 
und Untersuchungen, xxxi. 3 (1907), pp. 288-289. The numerous 
Greek texts are pubHshed by T. Schermann in the Teubner text 
series under the title Prophetarum vitae fabulosae, etc., 1907. 
For some of the material in New Testament manuscripts see von 
Soden, Die Schriften des N.T. I. i. (1902), pp. 305-333.1 

^ Much bibliographical material on the traditions about Luke, together with 
brief quotations, will be found in Zahn, Einlcitwng in dasN.T.^, § 58 notes, and in 


In this literature the statements of the earUer writers are 
repeated with additions. Some of the commonest are as 
follow^s : 

Luke, the physician, the companion of Paul and author of 
the two XoyoL to Theophilus, is identified with the unnamed 
companion of Cleopas on the walk to Emmaus in Luke 

Moreover, the suggestion made in the passage of Adamantius 
given above that he was one of the seventy of Luke x., and the 
statement of Jerome following a suggestion of Origen that he 
was the anonymous brother of 2 Corinthians viii. 18, whose praise 
is in the gospel, recur as unqualified assertions. The view that 
Luke is the Lucius of Romans xvi. 21 is mentioned but not 
asserted by Origen.^ 

That Luke was from Antioch is plainly stated by Eusebius, 
H.E. III. iv. 7 Aou/ca? 8e to fiev yevo<i cov rwv air ^Av- 
rio^€ia<i, TTjv iTTcar/jfMrjv Se larp6>i ktX. (For the manner 
of expression compare 4 Mace. v. 4 'EXea^apo?, to yevo<i 
iep€v<;, TTjv eTTLaryjfiijv vofj,iK6<;.) Earlier in this chapter 
Eusebius has referred to the letter of Julius Africanus to 
Aristides about the genealogies in Matthew and Luke, and it 
is possible that the statement here about the latter is derived 
from that source also, for in sections of that letter not quoted 
by Eusebius but preserved in MSS. purporting to quote it 
through a catena of Nicetas (Spitta, Brief des Africanus an 
Aristides, p. Ill), we read : 6 Se AovKd<i to fxev jevo'i airo 

his Kommentar zum N.T. vol. iii. pp. 1-19, 738-745. The acts of Luke will be 
found in the Bollandist Acta Sanctorum, vol. Ivi. (1868), pp. 282-313. 

^ Zahn, Introduction to the N.T. iii. 5, n. 4. Deissmann has recently 
accepted this identification in Festgabe A. von Harnack dargebracht, Tiibingon, 
1921, pp. 117 ff. There seems to bo no early example of identification of 
Luke with tiie Lucius of Cyrene of Acts xiii. 1, unless the clause qui manet 
usque adhuc added to his name in the Codex Sangallensis of the Prophetiae 
ex omnibus libris collectae be thought to assume such an identification of Lucius 
with the author. On this treatise see A. Amelli, Miscellanea Cassinese, 1897, 
part 6 ; OescJiicMliche Studien Albert Ilauck zum 70 Qebeurlstag, 191G, pp. 52 fl., 
and Th. Zahn, Forschungen, ix. p. 21. 


rf/s' /BoMjiievT]^ ' hvnoyeia'i rjv kt\} The statement reappears 
in Jerome (see the three passages given elsewhere) and in the 
PrisciUianist Latin prologue to Luke (see p. 242, and of. the 
Latin prologue to Acts). Modern scholars have attempted to 
confirm the tradition in various ways, (a) Thus Zahn {Intro- 
duction to the New Testament, § 59, n. 5, and elsewhere) notes the 
early tradition about a Theophilus of Antioch, later identified 
with Luke's Theophilus and even with the bishop of Antioch of 
the same name of about 180 a.d. (6) Bacon {Expositor, Oct. 
1920, p. 291) notes that Basilides and Cerdo both came from 
Antioch and, like Cerdo's famous pupil Marcion, both used only 
Luke's gospel. It should be remembered, however, that with 
the possible exception of Ephrem Syrus none of the various 
Fathers who suggest a place of writing for Luke's gospel name 
Antioch. (c) Harnack {Luke the Physician, Eng. trans., pp. 
20-24) very forcibly argues from internal evidence in Acts the 
author's interest in Antioch, 

But here as in other similar traditions the real question is 
whether there was any independent knowledge on the subject 
still current in the Church or whether the assertion of Luke's 
Antiochian origin is a conjecture from the text. For the so-called 
' Western text ' of Acts xi. 28, as found not only in Codex Bezae 
but also in Augustine and several other Latin authorities, intro- 
duces a ' we ' in an incident at Antioch. This reading is cer- 
tainly as early as the tradition of Luke's Antiochian provenance 
— some would say it is the original text of Acts — and it is more 
likely to be the cause than the efiect of that tradition. Readers 
of such a text could naturally infer from this, the first occurrence 
of the ' we,' that the writer must himself have been an Antiochian, 
just as readers of the other text have assumed from the first 

^ It seems more likely, however, as Reichardt (Texte und Untersuchungen, 
xxxiv. 3 (1909), pp. 48-50) has more recently argued, and as even Zahn now 
agrees, that this passage in the catena of Nicetas on Luke, although it occurs 
between quotations from Africanus, is really the work of Eusebius and is taken 
bodily along with the quotations from Africanus from the lost Qitaestiones 
Evangdicae of Eusebius. 


occurrence of the ' we ' in their text at xvi. 10, and its dis- 
appearance and reappearance at Philippi, that the writer was 
' a man of Macedonia.' Granted that the ' we ' indicated 
the presence of the ultimate author, the fertile and clever 
inference of scholars in an age when all possible information and 
conjecture about the four evangelists was carefully compiled and 
compared could be trusted to determine both the name and home 
of the diarist. With the Western text Antioch was quite as 
easily settled on for the latter as Luke the physician was for the 

The scene of his literary labours is given by Jerome as in the 
parts of Achaia and Boeotia.^ Gregory of Nazianzus confines 
his activity to Achaia. According to Epiphanius Luke preached 
in Dalmatia, GaUia, Italy, and Macedonia. Dalmatia and 
Gallia are evidently due to their close association with the name of 
Luke, in 2 Timothy iv. 10 f. The other place names ^ are appar- 
ently inferences fiom the ' we '-passages (including the ' we '- 
passage at Antioch in the Western text of Acts xi. 28). 

In the earlier forms of tradition no mention is made of Luke's 
martyrdom, and later it is explicitly denied. But it is inevitable 
that he should be ranked by some as a martyr. The transla- 
tion of his relics to Constantinople in 357 a.d., along with those 
of Andrew, appears to have suggested both the fact of his 
martyrdom, and the method (crucified on an olive tree). The 
translation is mentioned and dated by Jerome. The day of Luke's 
death appears with some exceptions as October 18, as in the most 
modern church calendars. His age is usually given as between 

1 Some Peshitta MSS. give Alexandria, the traditional scene of Mark's work ; 
but this is perhaps due to confusion such as is frequent between the evangelists. 
One Peshitta MS. assigns Luke's gospel to Ephesus (instead of John's). 
Similarly, Ephraem Syrus assigns John's gospel to Antioch (instead of Luke's). 
Note further how in some of the pseudo-Ei^iphanius lists Luke's gospel is written 
at the instigation of Peter (instead of Mark's) and his death is placed at Ephesus 
(instead of Jolin's). 

^ Neither Boeotia nor Thebes (where Luke's martyrdom is usually placed) 
is mentioned in the N.T. But Boeotia has as variants the Biblical names 
Bithynia and Bethania, and it is hard to determine the original. 2 Cor. xi. 10 
may be suspected as the source of the phrase " in the parts of Achaia." 


seventy and ninety — often as eighty-four, the years assigned to 
the widow Anna in Luke ii. 37.^ Thebes is often given as 
the place of his death. Arabic and Coptic sources, how- 
ever, locate his martyrdom at Rome under Nero and give a 
full and independent account of the marvellous circumstances 
attending it.^ 

The tradition that Luke was a painter and the first to make 
a picture of the Virgin is widespread in the later Greek Church, 
but its origin and antiquity are not known. Except for a claim 
of Nicephorus Callistus that he is quoting from Theodorus Lector, 
this tradition has not been definitely traced earher than the 
tenth century. 

III. The Value of the Tradition 

The foregoing passages indicate how early and undisputed 
is the attribution of the two books to Luke, the companion of 
Paul. Such evidence is usually explained as due to an accurate 
memory of the actual facts of authorship handed down from 
generation to generation. Its value is enhanced by its early 
date and unanimity, and according to ordinary standards, Luke 
and Acts have an almost unexcelled attestation among those 
books of the New Testament which do not plainly declare their 
real or professed authorship. It is often called external tradi- 
tion. But external tradition ought to mean the preservation 
of facts concerning a book, which could not have been guessed 
at by a study of its contents and are thus ' external.' The 
question is whether much of the tradition concerning the New 
Testament is really external in this sense,^ or ought to be 

^ It is also usually said that lie had neither wife nor children, which may also 
be connected with the same passage. But Zahn, Kommentar, iii. 16, thinks 
these statements genume tradition since they are not derived from any New 
Testament suggestion. 

* Syriac sources for the same legend have also been foiuid. An EngUsh 
translation of a document of this type v/ill be found in E. A. W. Budge, The 
Contendings of the Apostles, vol. ii. (1901), 137-145. 

^ A deep, though often unconscious, difference of attitude on this point 


regarded as the earliest inference from the contents of the 

To estimate its value, it is necessary to consider the general 
character of the allusions in the literature of the early Church 
to the origin of the canonical books. 

There is much obscurity about the growth of the New Testa- 
ment canon. The books of the New Testament and other cognate 
literature were written separately, often anonymously, between 
A.D. 50 and 150. By the end of the fourth century the number 
of canonical books was definitely fixed and they were declared 
to be the inspired writings of apostles or their companions. It 
is their treatment during the intervening period that requires 

To a considerable extent the development is that of the atti- Requisites 
tude of the readers of the New Testament, for the canonisation icUv.*"°" 
of books merely registers the feeling entertained towards them ; 
and one may say that a theory of canonicity existed in the Church 
almost from the first. Briefly stated, the requirements for the 
acceptance of a book as authoritative were popularity, orthodoxy, 
and apostolicity. It is obvious that the popularity of any book 
was a matter of fact — it either was or was not generally known 
and read in churches. It is equally obvious that orthodoxy 
was a matter of personal and collective opinion. The book itself 
sometimes stated its authorship, and thus established or refuted 
a claim to canonicity.^ But in the case of an anonymous book 
its authorship could be inferred by conjecture from its contents 
or by comparison with other books, and repetition soon added 
authority to conjecture. Nevertheless, such inference, how- 
ever justifiable, is based on judgment, not on knowledge, 

has usually characteristically divided English from continental scholars. The 
English attitude has been to accept without sufficient inquiry the earliest 
evidence as necessarily external, the continental to be unduly suspicious of 
it, and to treat it almost as if it were necessarily untrue. Harnack represents 
a reaction against this attitude. 

^ 2 Peter and Hermas, for instance, were respectively accepted and rejected 
on tills ground. 


and is identical with what is commonly known as ' internal 

Even when actual apostolic authorship seemed impossible, 
there would be a tendency in the case of books otherwise 
acceptable or actually accepted in the canon to assign 
them apostolic authority. Numerous instances can be col- 
lected where apostolic connection was inferred from the 
contents. Hebrews was evidently not written in Paul's own 
style, but the thought was regarded as Paul's and so the book 
was assigned indirectly to him through Luke or some other 
amanuensis or translator.^ 
,TertuiUan. Tcrtullian plainly represents the feeling of the orthodox 

Church concerning the necessity of knowing the authorship of 
the Gospels when he argues that, unlike Marcion's gospel, they 
are not anonymous, for " a work ought not to be recognised 
which holds not its head erect, which shows no boldness, which 
does not assure of its trustworthiness by fullness of title and the 
fitting declaration of its author." " We lay it dow^n as our 
first position that the evangelical instnmient has apostles for 
its authors, to whom was assigned by the Lord himself this office 
of publishing the gospel. Even if they were apostolic " {apostolici, 
that is, belonging to the next generation, as we speak of the 
' Apostolic fathers '), " they do not stand alone but are with 
apostles and after apostles." ^ 

" That which Mark published may be affirmed to be Peter's, 
whose interpreter Mark was. For even Luke's form of the 
gospel men usually ascribe to Paul. And it may well seem that 
the works which disciples publish belong to their masters." ^ 
..." But Luke is not an apostle, but an apostolic man : not 
a master, but a disciple, and so inferior to a master — at least as 

^ Clem. Alex, apud Eus. H.E. vi. 14; Origen, ibid. vi. 25; Eusebius, ibid. 
iii. 38 ; Jerome, De vir. ill. 5. 

' Adv. Marc. iv. 2. Tertullian alludes to the African order of the Gospels, 
John, Matthew, Luke, Mark, which he seems in this treatise to regard as repre- 
senting chronological order. 

^ Adv. Marc. iv. 5. 


far behind him as the apostle whom he follows (and that no doubt 
was Paul) was behind the others : so that, had Marcion even 
published his Gospel in the name of Paul himself, the single 
authority of the document, destitute of all support from pre- 
ceding authorities, would not be a sufficient basis for our faith. 
There would still be wanted that Gospel which Paul found in 
existence, to which he yielded his belief, and with which he so 
earnestly wished his own to agree, that he actually on that 
account went u]) to Jerusalem to know and consult the apostles, 
' lest he should run, or had been running in vain ' ; in other 
words, that the faith which he had learned, and the gospel which 
he was preaching, might be in accordance with theirs. Then, 
at last, having conferred with the authors, and having agreed 
with them touching the rule of faith, they joined their hands 
in fellowship, and divided their labours thenceforth in the office 
of preaching the gospel, so that they were to go to the Jews, and 
Paul to the Jews and Gentiles. Inasmuch, therefore, as the 
enlightener of Luke himself desired the authority of his pre- 
decessors for both his own faith and preaching, how much more 
may not I require for Luke's gospel that which was necessary 
for the gospel of his master." i 

It is clear from this that Tertullian possessed a tradition which 
was not an inference so far as he was concerned, but that the 
argument which weighed with him was apostolic propriety rather 
than anything which we should regard as facts. It is, moreover, 
noticeable how much emphasis he lays on the impropriety of an 
anonymous gospel : Marcion did not share this view and pre- 
sented the gospel without giving the name of the writer. Did 
he know it ? It is strange how many inquiries in early Christian 
tradition take us back to the period of the Marcionite controversy, 
but no further. 

That tliat tradition was not really fixed but grew can be seen 
clearly in the connection of Peter with Mark's Gospel. Papias 
and Irenaeus in the second century speak of it as written by Mark, 
^ Adi\ Marc. iv. 2. 


apparently on tlie basis of Peter's preaching after Peter's death.^ 
Clement goes further and dates it before Peter's death, though 
he says that Peter " neither directly forbade nor encouraged it " ; "^ 
but Eusebius says that the Gospel " received the sanction of 
Peter's authority for reading in the churches," ^ while even 
earlier Origen, followed later on by Jerome, had already gone 
still further, and implied that Peter dictated it to Mark.* 

Similarly, in the case of Luke and Acts, though actual apostolic 
authorship is excluded by the preface (Luke i. 2), the early 
Church interpreted the reference to " eyewitnesses and ministers 
of the word " as showing that Luke was " not merely a follower 
but also a fellow -worker of the disciples, especially of Paul." ^ 
His intimate Pauline connection was proved by explaining 
the ' we ' passages as a mark of the author's own presence,^ 
and by identifying his book with the gospel preached by Paul,' 
and the writer himself with the unnamed " brother whose praise 
in the gospel is in all the churches." ^ 

Furthermore, a survey of the earliest literature shows that in 
the second century there were already growing many artificial 
theories about the origin, number, relation, and authority of 
New Testament books. These persisted through the following 
century, and became the commonplaces of the Fathers. In 

^ Eus. H.E. iii. 39 ; Iren. iii. 1. The text of Irenaeus is ij-era 8i t]]v tovtwv 
^^o5ov. It is just possible to interpret this as meaning " after Peter and Paul had 
left Rome " — the time referred to in the previous sentence. But ^^oSos is an 
almost technical term for death. It is therefore hard to accept this view which 
is stated best by Dom Chapman in the J.T.S., 1905, 563 f. 

- Eus. H.E. vi. 14. 

•"' Ibid. ii. 15 ; cf. Jerome, De vir. ill. 8. 

* Origen, apud Eus. H.E. vi. 25 ; Jerome, Ad Hedib. ii. " Petro narrante et 
illo scribente." 

5 Iren. iii. 14 ; Eus. iii. 4 and 24. 

* Iren. iii. 14. 

7 Rom. ii. 16, xvi. 25; 2 Tim. ii. 8; cf. also Gal. i. 11 ; 1 Cor. xv. 1, et al. ; 
Iren. iii. I; Tertull, Adv. Marc. iv. 58; Eusebius, H.E. iii. 4; Jerome, De vir. 
ill. 7, Ep. II., ad Paulinum. 

8 2 Cor. viii. 18; Origen, apud Eus. H.E. vi. 25. 6; Jerome, loc. cit. See 
also the Collect for St. Luke's Day. In all these cases Paul's ' gospel ' has 
been understood to mean a written gospel, an interpretation which is altogether 


the construction of such theories exactly the same use of general 
propriety and what we should call ' internal evidence ' was made 
as is employed by Tertullian in proving the Pauline authority 
of the Third Gospel and Acts. 

It is unnecessary to deal with the whole mass of this evidence : Canon of 
it is all of the same nature, and represents a single catena of ' " 
statement. There is no serious difference between the Canon 
of Muratori, Irenaeus, Clement, Tertullian, or Origen. They 
all say the same things, and none has any reason for his state- 
ments beyond what is common to all. Under these circum- 
stances, then, the value of the whole can be tested by an exami- 
nation of the Canon of Muratori, the earliest witness to the 
Lucan tradition. Is its evidence certainly based on knowledge, 
or may it be due to inference ? 

It was published in 1740 by Muratori from an eighth (?) 
century Latin MS. and appears to come from Rome, about the 
year 170.^ Though it is broken at the beginning and end and 
often is almost unintelligible either from faulty grammar and 
spelling or from conciseness of phraseology, its general character 
is plain. It is not only a list of accepted and rejected books, 
but also a condensed and laconic essay on the origin, contents, 
relation, and number of books, or, as we should say, a " New 
Testament Introduction." 

The first point to be noticed is that the precise number of 
books of Scripture was at this time a matter of serious interest. 
Thus the Old Testament had to consist of exactly twenty-two 

^ This date is derived from lines 73 ff., which say that the Shepherd of Hernias 
was written " very recently in our own times wliile Pius his brother the bishop 
was sitting on the chair of the church of the city of Rome." Pius appears 
to belong about A.u. 139-154. " Very recently" is of course a relative and 
indefinite term as Irenaeus reminds us when he speaks (about a.d. 185) of the end 
of Domitian's reign (a.d. 96) as being " not long ago, but almost in our own 
generation " (v. 30. 3). But any natural interpretation of the Canon of 
Muratori certainly implies a date within the second century. Few scholars 
have suggested a later origin. The arguments here drawn from it are largely 
independent of its early date, though they tend to confirm it, for illustrations 
of the same characteristics can be quoted from the successive Fathers of the 
Church back into the second century. 


books in order to correspond with the letters of the Hebrew 
alphabet. In the same way Irenaeus advances ingenious 
arguments to show that there can only be four Gospels.^ 

With a similar object the Canon of Muratori comments on 
the number of Paul's letters ; Paul, " the blessed apostle himself, 
following the order of his predecessor John, writes by name only to 
seven churches " — " for John in his apocalypse though he writes 
to seven churches nevertheless speaks to all," for " the church 
which is scattered throughout the whole world is nevertheless 
recognised to be one." This is the secret of the number. Seven 
is symbolic of unity and universality."^ The Canon of Muratori 

^ " It is not possible that the Gospels can be either more or fewer in number 
than they are. For, since there are four zones of the world in which we live, 
and four catholic spirits (i.e. four principal winds), while the church is scattered 
throughout all the world, and the pillar and ground of the church is the gospel 
and the spirit of life ; it is fitting that she should have four pillars . . . the 
gospel under four aspects, but bound together by one spirit " (Iren. Adv. Haer. 
iii. 11. 11). 

Irenaeus's explanation of the four faces of the living creatures of Ezekiel 
as applied to the evangelists illustrates another artificial treatment of the 
quadriga of the gospels. It is repeated and varied in later Fathers, and played 
an important part in Christian art. See Th. Zahn, Forsckungen zu Kanon- 
geschichte, vol. ii. pp. 257 ff. 

^ This view is not confined to this author. Cf. Victorinus Petavius in 
Apoc. i. 20 : " Those seven stars are the seven churches, which he names in 
his addresses by name, and calls them to whom he wrote epistles. Not that 
they are themselves the only, or even the principal churches ; but what he 
says to one, he says to all. For they are in no respect different, that on that 
ground any one should prefer them to the larger number of similar small ones. 
In the whole world Paul taught that all the churches are arranged by sevens, 
that they are called seven, and that the catholic church is one. And first of 
all, indeed, that he himself also might maintain the type of seven churches 
he did not exceed that number. But he wrote to the Romans, to the 
Corinthians, to the Galatians, to the Ephesians, to the Thessalonians, to the 
Philippians, to the Colossians ; afterwards he wrote to individual persons, so 
as not to exceed the number of seven churches. And abridging in a short 
space his announcement, he thus says to Timothy : ' That thou mayest know 
how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the church of the living God.' We 
read also tliat this typical number is announced by the Holy Spirit by the 
mouth of Isaiah : ' Of seven women which took hold of one man.' The one 
man is Christ, not born of seed ; but the seven women are seven churches, 
receiving his bread and clothed with his apparel, who ask that their reproach 
should be taken away, only that his name should be called upon them. The 
bread is the Holy Spirit, which nourishes to eternal life, promised to them, 
that is, by faith. And his garments wherewith they desire to be clothed are 


gets its number by counting only churclies, and the additional 
letters need explanation. " To the Corinthians and Thessa- 
lonians he writes a second time for correction," " To Titus he 
writes one letter and to Timothy two out of love and affection. 
Yet they are sanctified in the honour of the catholic church for 
the ordaining of ecclesiastical discipline." 

It is also noticeable that the differences of the four Gospels 
were observed from the first and demanded explanation. Their 
different beginnings or principia were compared and allegorically 
explained,! and various lines of primitive thought in gospel 
harmonisation appear somewhat cryptically and briefly presented 
in the Canon of Muratori. 

In the fragment as we have it the starting-point of Luke is 
the only one mentioned. " He began to narrate from the birth 
of John," but later he says, " and therefore though the several 

the glorj-^ of immortality, of which Paul the apostle says : ' For this corruptible 
must put on iiicorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.' " So also 
Cyprian, inverting the order of John and Paul, refers twice to their common 
use of seven : in the De exhort, martyr. 11 he says : " And the apostle Paul, who 
remembered this regular and fixed number, writes to seven churches. And in 
the Apocalypse the Lord WTites his divine commands and heavenly precepts 
to seven churches " ; and in the Testim. adv. Jud. i. 20 he says : " Likewise in 
the first book of Kings (1 Sam. ii. 5) : ' The barren has born seven and she 
who had very many sons is weakened.' Now the seven sons are seven churches. 
Wherefore also Paul wrote to seven churches, and the Apocalypse puts seven 
churches, that the sevenfold number might be preserved, etc." Jerome 
says : " Paul the apostle writes to seven churches (for the eighth (letter) 
to the Hebrews is put outside the number by most) ; he gives instruc- 
tions to Timothy and Titus, and intreats Philemon in behalf of a fugitive 
slave " (Epist. II. ad Paulinum). On the unity of the scattered Church 
similar thoughts are expressed by Irenaeus : " For the church preaches the 
truth everywhere, and she is the seven-branched candlestick which bears the 
light of Christ " {Adv. Haer. v. 20. 2). 

Later collections of letters number seven, as the letters of Ignatius. Eusebius 
mentions seven letters of Dionysius of Corinth to special churches, but calls 
them catholic or universal letters {H.E. iv. 23). So our own seven catholic 
epistles perhaps should be connected both in name and in number with the 
symbolic principle implicit in the Canon of Muratori. 

It is worth noting that the later canon of Paul had fourteen (2 x 7) letters 
which could still be used symbolically. Cf. Origen, Horn, on Josh. 7. 

^ E. A. Abbott, The Four-fold Gospel, Introduction, p. 82 ff., explains Papias' 
famous criticism of Mark as being " not in order " as an allusion to the starting- 
point of Mark. 



books of the gospel are shown to have different beginnings, 
nevertheless it makes no difference to the faith of the believers, 
since by the one and principal spirit are declared in all of them 
all things concerning his birth, death, resurrection, intercom:se 
with his disciples, and his twofold coming, the first in humility, 
despised, which has been, the second in royal power, illustrious, 
which is to be." The fragment seems to refer, in the first lines 
now extant, to the presence or absence of Mark or Peter at events 
recorded in the Second Gospel,^ and it goes on to say that Luke 
wrote ex opinione (perhaps, ' from hearsay '), but had not 
seen the Lord in the flesh and so he wrote as best he could " trace 
the course of events " — {asequi (sic)). But in Acts — " he wrote 
in detail the things that had occurred in his presence, as his 
omission of the passion of Peter and of the departure of 
Paul, when he departed from the city (Rome) to Spain shows 
clearly." ^ 

" John, however, expressly mentions in his epistle the several 
relations he had to evangelic material, saying of himself, ' What 
we have seen with our eyes and have heard with our ears and our 
hands have handled, that we write to you.' For thus he professes 
to have been successively not merely a seer and hearer, but also 
a writer of all the wonderful deeds of the Lord." 

The fragment says that Luke and John wrote " in their own 
name " (lines 5, 15). This means that though they were the 
authors, they were not the only authority for their works. In 
the case of Luke, presumably Paul or the sources of his preface 
are meant to be understood as his authorities. With regard to 
John, the double authorisation of his gospel, divine and human, 
is distinctly noted — divine revelation and the approval of his 

1 " . . . quibus tamen interiuit et ita posuit." 

^ This seems to be the general meaning of the sentence, though it would 
be difficult to restore with certainty its spelling and construction. The dis- 
tinction between Luke and Acts is concisely expressed by Eusebius and Jerome. 
The former says of Acts (H.E. iii. 4) : " He composed it, no longer from hear- 
say, but perceiving with his eyes." The latter (De vir. ill. 7) : " So he wrote 
the gospel as he had heard, but he composed the Acts of the Apostles as he 
himself had seen." 


fellow-disciples and bishops. " John, one of the disciples,^ 
when his fellow-disciples and bishops urged him (to write a gospel) 
said : ' Fast with me to-day for three days, and whatever is 
revealed to each let us tell one another.' The same night it 
was revealed to Andrew, one of the Apostles, that John should 
write everything in his own name, while all revised and certified 
it {recognoscentihus).'" 

This story, no doubt based on the mysterious ' we ' in John 
xxi. 24, recurs in Jerome,^ thus : " He was urged by nearly all 
the bishops of Asia at that time and by delegations of many 
churches to write, etc. . . . And ecclesiastical history relates 
that when he was urged by the brethren to write he replied that 
he would do so if all should declare a fast and pray God in common. 
When this was done, filled with revelation, he burst forth with 
that prologue, etc." Clement of Alexandria ^ says he wrote 
it at the instigation of his acquaintances {TrporpaTreura viro 
Twv jvcoptfjicov ; Rufinus deprecatum a discipulis). Irenaeus seems 
to identify the witnesses of John xxi. 24 with " all the elders 
who met John the disciple of the Lord in Asia." * 

Similar stories of composition by request occur about Mark 
in Clement {apvd Eus. H.E. vi. 14) and Eusebius {ibid. ii. 15). 
In the latter it is said that Peter learned of what Mark had done 
by a revelation of the Spirit. Of course all the Gospels are 
naturally assumed to be inspired. 

The bearing of these characteristics of the Canon of Muratori Conoiu- 
and other early Christian literature on the tradition of Lucan 
authorship is evident. They show that speculation on the 
origin of the New Testament books was already abundant in the 
second century. Whether authentic external evidence was 

^ This use of ' disciple ' is striking, as Andrew is called an apostle just 
below. So Irenaeus (iii. 11. 7, et al. ; cf. also Epideixis, xliii.) calls John ' disciple.' 
But the term does not aim to exclude him from the apostles, but is due rather 
to the use of ' disciple ' in John xxi. 24, and other passages which refer to 
the " disciple whom Jesus loved," and include him in the number of the twelve. 

^ Comm. in Matt. Praef. 

3 Eus. H.E. vi. 14. 

* Ibid. iii. 23 ; Iren. ii. 22. 


available or not, the inner characteristics of the books gave rise 
to more or less fanciful theories about the occasion, date, purpose, 
authority, and even the authorship of individual books, and 
about the relation of the several books to each other. These 
theories became gradually the uniform tradition of the Church. 
The earher the date of the Canton of Muratori the less assuring 
appears to be its witness to the tradition of Lucan authorship. 
For it shows that from the beginning the assertion of Lucan 
authorship was inextricably bound up with reasoning which is 
obviously derived from fiction, allegory, and conjecture devised 
to explain obscure phenomena in the books of the New Testament 
and to satisfy curiosity in regard to gaps in knowledge where no 
real information was available. Nor does the consistency of 
this tradition, as it continues through the times of Origen, 
Eusebius, and Jerome, give it any special value, for the more 
fanciful theories are similarly repeated in later writers. 

Whether any actual knowledge about the author of the Third 
Gospel and Acts was handed down from early times or not, the 
first statements made about it can be largely explained as infer- 
ences from the text. Thus the statement that the author had 
not seen Jesus, but knew men who had seen him, clearly states 
nothing which cannot be inferred from Luke's preface. The 
omission from Acts of Peter's martyrdom and Paul's departure 
to Spain are obvious to any reader ; but they seemed to need 
explanation to Romans of the second century, and the explanation 
is suggested by the ' we ' passages. In them and indeed in the 
whole book the author " wrote what was done in his presence," 
omitting other contemporary events. Under any explanation 
the ' we ' passages are a most striking phenomenon and demand 
explanation.! Any modern scholar who believes that they are 
most naturally explained as showing that the author of both 
books was a companion of Paul, must admit that the same 
explanation might suggest itself ui the second century. And 

^ It is instructive to notice how much attention and conjecture was called 
forth by the single ' we ' passage in John xxi. 24. See above, pp. 258 f . 


then at once the question presses for solution, What companion ? 
Why the early church answered ' Luke ' we can only guess. 
That it knew is of course not impossible ; but our study has 
led us to beUeve that whether it knew or not it would be sure 
in time to answer such a question. The New Testament books 
themselves would be scanned for a reply with a critical zeal 
and imagination scarcely surpassed in modern times. The 
' we ' continues to Paul's two years in prison at Rome. From 
prison Paul writes several letters and mentions several companions 
— Epaphras, Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, Luke (Philemon 23, 
24), Jesus Justus (Col. iv. 11). Perhaps Luke's selection was 
due to a process of elimination, for Aristarchus is excluded by 
Acts xxvii. 2, " Aristarchus being with us." He as well as Jesus 
Justus and Mark are called, in Col. iv. 10, 11, " of the 
circumcision." Epaphras is a Colossian (Col. iv. 12). Accord- 
ing to 2 Tim. iv. 9-12, neither Demas nor Mark is with 
him, nor, of other frequent companions, either Crescens, 
Titus, or Timothy himself. Possibly, therefore, opinion was 
influenced by the statement of 2 Tim. iv. 11, " Only Luke is 
with me." ^ 

It is not necessary to determine exactly what passages were 
used, nor what inferences and conjectures were drawn from them 
in order to assign the Third Gospel and Acts to Luke. Some- 
time before a.d. 180 the assignment was made, and before that 

^ To the author of the fragment, believing as he did both in the genuineness 
of the pastoral epistles and in the tradition of Paul's journey to Spain, practi- 
cally no other date was possible for this passage than the two years in Rome. 
Furthermore, the author of Acts must have been present those two years since 
" he mentions only what was done in his presence." Eusebius, applying the 
same method of inference to this same passage and to the statement in a sub- 
sequent verse, " At my first defence no one took my part, but all forsook me," 
draws the following somewhat opposite conclusions : Paul was twice im- 
prisoned and tried at Rome, but preached in the interval, since he says God 
rescued him at the first trial that he might preach to the Gentiles. " At this 
second defence only Luke was with him, at his first not even he. Wherefore, 
probably Luke composed the Acts of the Apostles about that time, telling the 
story as far as he was in Paul's company. This we have said is evidence that 
Paul's martyrdom was not accomplished during his sojourn at Rome which 
Luke records." See the whole passage in H.E. ii. 22. 


date we have no records dealing with the authorship of the books.^ 
Evidences of their use may exist thirty years before, perhaps 
still earlier, but evidence of use is not evidence as to authorship. 
The origin of the assignment of the gospel and Acts to Luke 
is therefore uncertain. But even in the earliest Christian records 
the treatment of authorship and kindred topics is evidently 
based primarily on various words and phrases of Scripture 
selected, combined, interpreted, allegorised, elaborated and 
repeated until the very interpretation of them became a fixed 
tradition. And it is not unfair to suppose that the methods of 
the writers of Alexandria, Asia, Rome, and Gaul at the end of 
the second century were also the methods of their predecessors, 
from whom the tradition of Lucan authorship was derived. It 
is therefore possible that this tradition is merely the earliest 
conjecture without any independent value. 

Whether the conjecture was correct is quite a difierent 
question. Much of the earliest criticism seems to us fanciful 
and crude and altogether lacking in scientific and historical 
method, or in any sense of literary or psychological probabilities. 
Two tendencies especially biased their theories of authorship — 
the desire to identify the author with some definite name, and 
the desire to give him apostolic authority. And it was these 
tendencies also that made conjecture inevitable. Origen's 
confession that no one knew the authorship of the epistle to the 
Hebrews ^ is a surprising example of the modernity of his criticism. 
Even when much shrewdness is displayed by the Fathers in 
dealing with internal evidence the argument is often more clever 
than convincing. It is striking how obvious evidence is passed 

^ It may perhaps be inferred from the silence of Eusebius that Papias did 
not discuss the authorship of Luke or Acts or John. It is difficult to say how 
early should be dated the evidence for Lucan authorship impHed in the title 
" According to Luke " found in the earliest MSS. It certainly records the 
general opinion of the fourth century. The transUteration cata Lucan in 
the Old Latin MS. e hardly proves, as some have said, that the Greek original 
of the translator read so. 

^ " But as to who wrote the letter, God alone knows the truth " (Eus. H.E. 
vi. 25). 


over in silence ; it is the obscure and the unknown that arouse 
the curiosity and call forth the ingenuity of early patristic 
scholarship. Their answers prove the existence of very little 
really external tradition, even only a few generations after the 
New Testament books were written. As the quotations given 
above prove, the solution is generally found by symbols, alle- 
gories, numbers, and the forcing of words and texts. Certainly 
in modern times we shall read with interest all these suggestions, 
but in trying to discover how the canonical Gospels really came 
to number four, or the churches of Paul's letters seven, under 
what circumstances the Fourth Gospel was written, and how the 
gospels were to be harmonised in their various difierences, we 
shall give little weight to the tradition of the Fathers. It is 
neither possible nor right to prevent this fact from influencing 
our judgment on the ascription of authorship in early tradition. 
If these writers had merely stated that, for instance, Luke 
wrote Acts we should have reason to say that presumably 
this was what their predecessors had said, and when their 
evidence is thus summarised and repeated, it is not strange that 
many students accept it at once, and regard any hesitation to 
do so as hypercritical. It is only when we read the tradition 
as a whole that the reason for scepticism is apparent. No one 
who has done this can deny that the witnesses are remarkable 
for an inability to distinguish fancy from fact, and betray their 
ignorance by their statements rather than by their silence. 

It must be admitted as possible that the whole tradition of 
Apostolic authorship may in such cases represent the tendency 
to assign to Apostolic persons documents possessing the neces- 
sary qualifications for inclusion in the canon on the ground of 
their contents, rather than the fact that in the second century 
men remembered who the author really was. If so, much which is 
called ' external tradition ' may be neither external nor tradition, 
but the earliest statement of the internal evidence interpreted 
in the light of a canonicity which had been already conceded. 

Thus we may consider it safer to draw our conclusions as to 


the authorship of Luke- Acts directly from the books as we have 
them. If the internal evidence unmistakably proves or dis- 
proves Lucan authorship, its testimony is worth more than tradi- 
tion ; if it is inconclusive, the tradition may be right, but is not 
adequate proof, and we must be content, as in the case of many 
other of the greatest books, to be ignorant of the author. 



The Paul of Acts and the Paul of the Epistles 

By C. W. Emmet 

It is perhaps not quite so superfluous as might at first appear 
to emphasise the fact that we can no longer approach such a 
subject as this on the old basis of a belief in verbal inspiration. 
For neither those whose main interest is the defence of the 
accuracy of the New Testament writings, nor those whose ideal 
is that of the impartial historian, always realise what is imphed 
in the changed point of view. Both still show at times the 
subconscious influence of presuppositions which in theory have 
been long abandoned, and look for an unreasonable amount of 
agreement in the New Testament writings. The result is that 
the one class sometimes forces this agreement by the use of the 
methods associated with the ' Harmonisers ' of an earlier period, 
while the other is tempted to draw from the discrepancies which 
it finds damning conclusions which it would hardly draw in the 
case of writings outside the Canon. 

We have no right to expect a complete agreement between 
the Acts and Paul ; the real questions we have to ask are 
whether the differences between the two are so great that one 
or the other — presumably Acts — must be regarded as a late and 
unreliable witness, and whether the general presentation of the 
facts in Acts is such as we might ascribe to a companion of Paul. 



It will be convenient to group the material under the follow- 
ing heads : 

I. Accounts in which Acts and the Pauline Epistles seem to 

II. Indirect coincidences or discrepancies. 

III. The general presentation in Acts of Paul as compared 
with the impression given in his own writings. 

I. Accounts in which Acts and the Pauline Epistles 


1. The life ^^^ ^^^ authorities agree as to the strict Pharisaism and 
of Paul fanatical enthusiasm of Paul's early days.i but we may note 

before his _ j j ' j 

conversion, that Acts is OUT Only authority for his connection with Tarsus. 
Further, there is agreement as to his attitude towards 
Christianity ; ^ but a question arises as to his early activity as 
a persecutor in Jerusalem. 

The evidence for this is derived wholly from Acts, and it 
has been urged that it is inconsistent with the statements in 
the Epistles. In Gal. i. 13 fE. Paul says that he had been 
persecuting the Church of God, that after his conversion he 
' returned ' to Damascus, and that he remained ' unknown 
by face ' to the churches of Judaea. Only they heard that " he 
who once persecuted us is now preaching the faith of which 
he once made havoc." The most natural interpretation of this 
passage would be that Paul had persecuted Christians in 
Damascus, that he went back to Damascus after his conversion, 
and never went near Jerusalem until the time, three years later, 
when he went up to see Peter. The ' us,' in the phrase " he 
who persecuted us," is on this view taken to refer to the brethren 
in Damascus, as a prominent persecuting official cannot well 
be unknown by sight to his victims. 

^ Acts xxii. 3, xxiii. 6, xxvi. 5 ; Gal. i. 14 ; 2 Cor. xi. 22 ; Phil. iii. 5. 

* Acts vii. 58, ix. 2 fE., etc. ; Gal. i. 13 ; 1 Cor. xv. 9 ; PM. iii. 6 ; 1 Tim. 
i. 13. It is worth noting that Tropdeiv occurs in N.T. only in this connection, 
i.e. in Acts ix. 21 ; Gal. i. 13, 23. 


It is therefore held that the connection between Paul and 
Stephen in Acts is imaginary, and that the ' letters to 
Damascus ' are an artificial link forged in order to bring him 
to Damascus for his conversion. It has also been argued that 
Paul's Judaism was not the contemporary Rabbinic Judaism 
of Jerusalem, and therefore suspicion falls on the statement of 
Acts that he was brought up at the feet of Gamaliel.^ 

The answer to these objections is : 

(1) There is nothing intrinsically improbable in the account 
given in Acts ; ^ the conversion becomes in fact harder to explain, 
if we abandon the connection of Paul with Stephen. 

(2) Even if the view that Paul was a Hellenist be accepted, 
it does not exclude a period of training at Jerusalem ; young 
men are not always chameleons, and Gamaliel himself is credited 
with liberal tendencies. 

(3) It is possible that the ' churches of Judaea,' in Gal. i. 22, 
is to be taken as excluding rather than including Jerusalem, 
since Paul has just mentioned a visit to Jerusalem. It has, 
however, to be admitted that this is not the most obvious mean- 
ing of the words. Paul seems to be saying merely that, though 
he did go up to Jerusalem, he made no public appearance there 
or elsewhere in Judaea. 

(4) In Rom. xv. 19 Paul says he preached the gospel " from 
Jerusalem ... to lUyricum." If this be taken to include 
Jerusalem it may refer to the preaching described in Acts ix. 28 f . 

(5) ' Persecuted us ' in Gal. i. 23 has clearly more force 
if it refers to the persecution of Christians in Jerusalem rather 
than Damascus, and ' unknown by face ' may mean that after 
his conversion the Judaean Christians never caught a glimpse 
of Paul — not that they would not have recognised him had 
they seen him. The prima facie impression of Galatians is 
unfavourable to the account of Acts, but it does not seem 

^ Montefiore, Judaism and Paul, p. 90 ; see also Bousset, Kyrios Christos, 
p. 92; Lois3% Les Mysteres patens, p. 317. 

'^ See lianiack, Mission und Ausbreitung, pp. 40, 237 ff., for tlie activities 
of Jewish ' apostles,' and the light thrown on the mission of Paul to Damascus. 



altogether to exclude it, if we postulate a certain exaggeration 
and looseness of expression on Paul's part. 
2. The Paul regards his conversion as the turning-point in his life 

and connects it with Damascus (Gal. i. 15-17), but he emphasises 
the fact that no human intermediary had a share in it. Accord- 
ing to Acts, however, he was instructed and baptized by Ananias.^ 

The divergence of these statements is obvious, but there 
is a fair case in favour of the substantial truth of Acts. It is 
extremely probable that in Galatians Paul somewhat exaggerates 
his independence of all human instruction. He writes as a 
7rvevfxaTCK6<i ^ who relies on his own inspiration and is independ- 
ent of teaching from ' flesh and blood.' What he is really 
concerned to show is, that his gospel, with its special mission 
to the heathen world, is his own. This is scarcely contradicted 
even by the words put into the mouth of Ananias, and elsewhere 
Paul admits that he had received some information about the 
life of Jesus (cf. the irapeXa^ov of 1 Cor. xv. 3 and perhaps of 
1 Cor. xi. 23) ; moreover, his language about baptism certainly 
suggests that he had himself been baptized. 

Further difficulties arise with regard to Paul's movements 
after the conversion, as narrated in Acts and Gal. i. Galatians 
mentions a visit to Arabia following hnmediately on the con- 
version, of which Luke says nothing. He does, however, mention 
a period of preaching at Damascus omitted by Paul. Paul 
tells us he returned thither (Gal. i. 17), and there is no inherent 
improbability in supposing that he at once began to preach. 
According to Acts ix. 23, his stay at Damascus was cut short 
by a plot of the Jews against his life. An allusion to this may 
reasonably be found in the reference to the attempt of Aretas 
(2 Cor, xi. 32), though this difiers in an important point from the 
account in Acts ix. This must be placed either here or in the 
visit to Syria implied in Gal. i. 21 ; but it is more natural 

^ Acts ix. and xxii., but not Acts xxvi. 

* See Reitzenstein, Die hellenistischen Mysterienreligionen, pp. 48, 198 fif. ; 
Watkins, Der Kampf des Paulus um Galatien, pp. 47, 70 (Eng. trans. *S^ PauVs 
Fight for Galatia, pp. 104, 158). 


to refer the latter to Antioch rather than to Damascus, and the 
coincidences of the language of 2 Cor. xi. with Acts are too 
close to justify the rejection of the traditional interpretation 
without good reason. It has indeed been argued from the 
evidence of coins that Aretas could not have had control over 
Damascus before a.d. 37, and that therefore the incident cannot 
on any dating be connected with the conversion. This conclu- 
sion, however, does not hold good. For the term ' Ethnarch ' 
does not imply that Damascus formed part of the dominions of 
Aretas, but simply that he had a representative there (a ' consul ' 
in the modern sense). It has been suggested that Paul may 
have roused the hostility of Aretas by his preaching in Arabia, 
while even if we regard it as improbable that the visit to Arabia 
was undertaken for this purpose, there is no difficulty in ascribing 
the action of Aretas to a desire to win the favour of the Jews of 

A far more complicated problem turns mainly on the relation 3. visits to 
between Acts and Gal. i. and ii. Jerusalem. 

Both these authorities narrate a visit placed soon after the (a) The first 
conversion ; the accounts may be placed in parallel columns : ^^'* 

Acts ix. 26-29. Gal. i. 18-24. 

And when he was come to After three years I went up to 

Jerusalem, he assayed to join him- Jerusalem to become acquainted 

self to the disciples : and they were with Cephas, and tarried with him 

all afraid of him, not believing that fifteen days. But other of the 

he was a disciple. But Barnabas apostles saw I none, save James 

took him, and brought him to the the Lord's brother. Now touching 

apostles, and declared unto them the things which I write unto you, 

how he had seen the Lord in the before God, I lie not. Then I came 

way, and that he had spoken to into the districts of Syria and 

him, and how at Damascus he had Cilicia. And I was unknown by 

preached boldly in the name of face unto the churches of Judaea 

Jesus. And he was with them which were in Christ : but they 

going in and out at Jerusalem only heard say. He that persecuted 

preaching boldly in the name of us once now preacheth the faith of 

the Lord : and he spake and dis- which he made havoc ; and they 

puted against the Greek-speaking glorified God in me. 
Jews ; but they went about to kill 


There are obvious differences between these two accounts, 
Luke giving the impression that this visit took place sooner, 
lasted longer, and was of a more public character than is suggested 
in Galatians. The notes of time in Acts are : "he was certain 
days with the disciples which were at Damascus " (ix. 19), and 
" when many days were fulfilled " (co? Se iifX'qpovvTo rjfiepai, 
iKavai, ix. 23). In view of Luke's vague use of lKav6<^, these 
are not necessarily inconsistent with Paul's ' after three years,' 
which may mean only one year and two fractions, the inference 
being that Luke had no definite data for the chronology of this 
period. It is, however, argued that the character of Paul's 
reception at Jerusalem implies that the conversion was so recent 
that news of it had not yet reached that city. A possible 
explanation is that Paul had disappeared for some time to Arabia 
before his conversion had become generally known in Damascus. 
It was only when he returned and preached that the fact became 
public, and therefore no report of it may have reached Jerusalem 
before his visit. 

With regard to the events of the visit, since Luke does not 
caU James (the brother of the Lord) an ' apostle,' the plural 
of ix. 27 (" brought him to the apostles ") is inconsistent 
with Gal. i. 19, " other of the apostles " {i.e. than Cephas) " saw I 
none, save James," while Paul's account, even if it be supposed 
to leave room for preaching during a short period (' fifteen 
days '), gives an entirely different impression from that left 
by Acts ix. 27 ff. The phrase " unknown by face to the churches 
of Judaea," even if it be understood as not including Jerusalem, 
must exclude the public ministry implied in Acts, and certainly 
contradicts Acts xxvi. 20 (" declared both to them of Damascus 
first, and at Jerusalem, and tliroughout all the country of Judaea, 
and also to the Gentiles, that they should repent "), since it 
is difficult to find room for any preaching in Judaea at an 
altogether later period. These discrepancies, however, need 
not imply that the whole account of the visit as given in Acts 
ix. is an invention ; they rather suggest that Luke had no 


detailed knowledge of the events of this period and filled in 
the picture in general terms. Gal. i. 20 seems to hint that 
erroneous accounts of that visit were already current. 

As to Paul's subsequent movements, he himself says that he 
went to Syria and Cilicia (Gal. i. 21), while Luke takes him 
to Tarsus (Acts ix. 30) and then to Antioch (xi. 26), thus revers- 
ing the order. It is possible that Syria is mentioned first by 
Paul as being the more important, as Cilicia was constantly 
little better than an appendage of Syria. 

The crux of the problem is the second visit to Jerusalem. (6) The 
The common assumption that Gal. ii. and Acts xv. are accounts ^s,°"to 
of the same events give rise to a double difiiculty : Jerusalem. 

(1) Paul's omission of any reference to the events of Acts xi. 

(2) The considerable divergence between the two accounts 
of the negotiations at Jerusalem. On the natural ground that 
Paul's account is first-hand, conclusions are drawn in both cases 
unfavourable to Acts. On the one hand, it is maintained that 
the visit of Acts xi. never took place, or is a duplicate of Acts xv. ; 
on the other hand, Acts xv. is pronounced unhistorical, as a 
literary attempt to amplify the private negotiations alluded 
to in Galatians. Naturally these views make it difl&cult to 
regard Acts as a reliable historical document. The Council 
clearly occupies a central place in Luke's scheme, and is intended 
to mark a critical point in the history of the Church ; ^ the 
narrative refers to well-known public and official events. If 
Acts is not here in substance accurate, the author must deliber- 
ately have invented facts, or relied on traditions obscured by 
time and unsupported, at any rate at this point, by first-hand 

The difficulties which arise if Acts xv. and Gal. ii. refer to The 

the same events call for detailed consideration, (a) In the first the second 

place, if the visit of Acts xi. is historical why is it omitted by T"*'* °^. 

^ Cf. J. Weiss, Vber die Absicht u. lit. Char, der Apg., p. 25 : " Die Erzahlung 
vom Apostel-Conzil bildet nicht nur ausserlich ziemlich genau die Mitte des 
Buches, sondern stellt sich auch sachlich als Mittelstiick und eine Art Wasser- 
scheide dar." 


Paul ? To argue that Paul may have passed it over in his 
survey, because he does not claim to be giving an exhaustive 
list of his visits to Jerusalem, fails to meet the difficulties ; for 
the implication of Galatians is not merely that Paul had not 
received his gospel from men, in other words, been a pupil of 
the Apostles or of the Jerusalem Church (both come into con- 
sideration), but that he had had no opportunity of doing so ; the 
nature of his movements after the conversion made it impossible. 
For this reason we have the successive notes of time : ' im- 
mediately ' (i. 16), ' then after three years ' {v. 18), ' then ' 
{v. 21), ' then after the space of fourteen years ' (ii. 1). It is 
therefore very difficult to believe that between these two ' thens,' 
and during the very interval covered by vv. 21-24, Paul had 
paid an official visit to Jerusalem as a delegate from Antioch. 
Whether he saw the apostles in the course of it, or whether 
the business was purely restricted to the question of relief, is 
not for the moment important. The point is that here was in 
fact an opportunity for intercourse with the Jerusalem Church. 
If the opportunity was not actually used and the visit had no 
further bearing on the questions at issue, it would have been 
all the easier for Paul to dispose of it in a sentence or parenthesis 
(and Paul is not afraid of parentheses !), instead of giving an 
obvious handle to his opponents to accuse him of disingenuous- 
ness at the very moment when he was appealing to God in 
token of his accuracy. 

This point, indeed, is admitted by most critics. Those who 
can find no mention of ' the Famine visit ' in Galatians often 
feel themselves compelled to get rid of it altogether by rejecting 
it as unhistorical ^ or by regarding it as a doublet of Acts xv. 
from a different source (so e.g. Pfleiderer and McGifiert). 

With respect to aU such solutions, it should be clearly under- 
stood that there is nothing suspicious in the story of Acts xi. 

^ See Moffatt, Intr. to the Lit. of the N.T., for a list of critics who take this 
view. Wendt regards the whole story of the famine and its sequel as a mistake 
arising from a literal interpretation of a prophecy of a famine which was intended 
figuratively, referring to a " famine of the word of the Lord " (cf. Amos viii. 11). 


as it stands ; the objections arise solely from the supposed 
difficulty of finding room for it in Galatians. 

(6) Secondly, even if Acts xv. stood in Luke's account as Acts xv. 
the second visit of Paul to Jerusalem after his conversion, 
instead of the third, there would still be grave objections to 
identifying it with the visit in Gal. ii. Why does not Paul so 
much as refer in Galatians to the decree of the Council — not 
merely the restrictive clauses, but even the main decision to 
the effect that Gentile Christians need not be circumcised ? 
We are told of the recognition by the ' pillars ' of the mission 
to the Gentiles, but this falls far short of what we should expect. 
For, according to Acts, what the Council gave to Paul was 
an authoritative decision that Gentile Christians were exempt 
from circumcision and from the keeping of, at any rate, the 
great mass of the Jewish Law. Paul was bound to bring this 
forward in his controversy with the Judaisers who had appealed 
to the authority of Jerusalem. No doubt he might have gone 
on to support it by arguments derived from the Old Testament 
and by other considerations, but this must of necessity have 
been his starting-point. To say that it was so familiar to the 
Galatians that it could be taken for granted is not ad rem. 
For if the decree existed when Paul wrote, both they and the 
Judaisers were ignoring it, and the first thing was to remind 
them of it in the clearest and most emphatic manner possible.^ 

A word must be said as to the omission of any reference 
to the restrictive clauses of the decree. Are they compatible 
with St. Paul's statement that the only restriction was " that 

^ The difficulty is not greatly eased by the view of Wendt that the decrees 
were really only local, addressed solely to Syria and Cilicia, their scope being 
wrongly extended by Luke in Acts xvi. 4, xxi. 25. It is argued in support that 
the Jewish-Gentile difiiculty was probably most acute in the countries nearer 
to the centre. But even if this be true with regard to the purpose of the decrees, 
they were clearly relevant to the Galatian controversy, and St. Paul had every 
reason to assume that a libera! solution adopted for Syria and Cilicia would not 
be refused for Galatia. He had only to say, " In churches where this question 
has arisen the Jerusalem Church has removed the burden, so that the question 
is practically settled for j'ou too." 



we should remember the poor " ? On the ordinary view that 
they are ceremonial restrictions their omission does not seem to 
be honest, and certainly adds to the difficulty of the identification. 
On the other hand, if the ' Western ' or B text be adopted they 
are not ceremonial restrictions. 

The Western text describes the restriction as abstinence from 
elSwXodvTcov ai/xaTO'i and iropveia^, omitting itvlktov. Two 
interpretations of this text are possible : (1) the three offences 
indicated are idolatry, murder, and fornication ; (2) they are 
three characteristic forms of heathen sacrificial practice. In 
neither case are they ceremonial restrictions in the same way 
as a food law.^ 

Still, even if this text be accepted, the omission of all mention 
of the Decree by Paul remains very hard to explain. It was 
obviously in Paul's interest to quote the whole Decree, since, 
on this view, it marked the most complete victory for his 

There is a similar difficulty in regard to 1 Corinthians which 
was certainly written after the Council. But in discussing the 
question of eating things ofiered to idols the Apostle had no 
need to introduce the main decision of the Council. There was 
no controversy as to circumcision at Corinth. With regard to 
the restrictive clauses, the regulation about elScoXodvra is not 
really relevant, since the point at issue was the relation between 
Gentile Christians and their heathen neighbours, not the relation 
between Gentiles and Jews within the Church. This part of the 
decree was in fact only local and temporary, and did not apply to 
a predominantly Gentile Church such as Corinth, being intended 
to regulate social intercourse between Jewish and Gentile Chris- 
tians.^ It is true we have rejected this argument as explaining 
why the decision abolishing the requirement of circumcision is 
ignored in Galatians, but the case here is quite different. The 
exemption of Gentile converts from the burden of the Law was 

^ See pp. 324 fE., and in the commentary on this passage. 
* So Wendt, p. 236 ; Sanday, The Apostolic Decree. 


a fundamental principle which if adopted for mixed Churches 
in the neighbourhood of Jerusalem applied a fortiori to all other 
Churches ; the conditions, if they did in fact constitute a food- 
law, took the form of restrictions which might well be only local 
and temporary in their operation. As a fact of history this is 
what happened ; the main decree was applied universally in the 
Christian world ; the restrictions dropped into oblivion, and 
little is heard of them subsequently. If we accept the ' Western ' 
text, the difficulty is even less, for the question of elhoiXoOvra 
at Corinth was not one of morality or of deliberate participation 
in idolatrous worship. 

(c) What St. Paul actually does say in Gal. ii. is quite incon- 
sistent with Acts XV. : 

Then after the space of fourteen years I went up again to Jeru- 
salem with Barnabas, taking Titus also with me. And I went up by 
revelation ; and I laid before them the gospel which I preach among 
the Gentiles, but privately before them who were of repute, lest by 
any means I should be running, or had run, in vain. But not even 
Titus who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be circum- 
cised : and that because of the false brethren privily brought in, 
who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ 
Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage ; to whom we gave 
place in the way of subjection, no, not for an hour ; ••■ that the truth 
of the gospel might continue with you. But from those who were 
reputed to be somewhat (whatsoever they were, it maketh no matter 
to me ; God accepteth not man's person) — they, I say, who were 
of repute imparted nothing to me : but contrariwise, when they saw 
that I had been intrusted with the gospel of the uncircumcision, 
even as Peter with the gosj)el of the circumcision (for he that wrought 
for Peter unto the apostleship of the circumcision wrought for me 
also unto the Gentiles) : and when they perceived the grace that 
was given unto me, James and Cephas and John, they who were 
reputed to be pillars, gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of 
fellowship, that we should go unto the Gentiles and they unto the 
circumcision ; only they would that we should remember the poor ; 
which very thing I was also zealous to do. 

^ The text is doubtful, but it is in any case ambiguous ; see Zahn's Kom- 
mentar ziim Neue Testament, ix. 1905; and Lake, Earlier Epistles of St. Paul, 
pp. 275 ff. 


Public or Here we have a private discussion between Paul and Barnabas 

ruslk)n?'^ on the one hand, and James, Cephas, and John on the other, 
leading to a recognition of the fact that Paul has been entrusted 
with the duty of preaching to the Gentiles, with a consequent 
division of the spheres of labour ; the terms on which Gentiles 
were to be admitted may have been understood, but .'t is not 
stated that they were explicitly settled. Acts xv., on the other 
hand, describes a formal and public discussion, in which Peter 
takes the lead and by speaking of his own admission of Gentiles 
in the past, brings about a decision, embodied in writing, with 
regard to circumcision and the Law. No doubt this public 
debate may have been, and indeed probably was, preceded by 
private conferences, and it is perfectly natural that Luke should 
say nothing of them. But it is an altogether different thing 
when Paul speaks of the private conference as though it were 
the only thing which happened, and ignores the formal and public 
decision altogether. Paul's language, indeed, excludes any such 
pubUc discussion ; ' but privately ' cannot mean " privately 
in the first place and then publicly before the Church," and it 
would seem impossible to accept the view of Lightfoot and others 
that while Luke writes from the official and public point of view, 
Paul confines himself to the history of the private negotiations.^ 
If we suppose a missionary sent home to discuss an important 
point of Church policy, and invited to address Convocation on 
the subject, with the result that that body came to a formal 
decision in his favour, it would be inconceivable that he should 
write back, " I went to London, and discussed the matter, but 
privately, with three or four leading bishops," simply because 
he had had a private conference at Lambeth before the public 
debate, passing over the latter in complete silence. 
Suggested It is indeed suggested,^ partly on the ground of supposed 

solutions. cTPc (• 11 ii---» 

traces of differences of sources, that the real decision m Acts xv. 

1 Cf. C. W. Emmet, " The Epistle to the Galatians " in The Benders 

^ Watkins, oj). cit. p. 94 (Eng. trans, p. 222). 


is taken by the Apostles, while the rank and file play no part. 
No doubt these may have been little more than listeners, but 
Luke's story must be very drastically edited and cut down before 
it can represent merely a private conference between half a dozen 
leading men ; and even then this hypothesis does not solve the 
problem why the terms of the decision are not more definitely 
reproduced in Galatians. 

Once more the reality of these difficulties is very generally 
recognised, only to be solved, as before, at the expense of Acts. 
Acts XV. is either rejected as unhistorical, or else it is regarded 
as the antedating of a decree which only came into existence at 
a later period in the history of the Church and after the writing 
of Galatians and 1 Corinthians. ^ A somewhat favourite form 
of this theory is that supported by J. Weiss, who argues that the 
original account of the Council made no mention of Paul and 
Barnabas, their presence being due entirely to a secondary source. 
Support for this view is found in Acts xxi. 25, where Luke repre- 
sents James as informing Paul of the restrictive decrees of the 
Council, as though he had never heard of them. The verse, 
however, may either be a gloss (its removal improves the con- 
nection between verses 24 and 26), or else, more probably, it is 
a not very necessary note on the part of Luke, put into the mouth 
of James but really intended for the benefit of the reader, not 
representing information given to Paul.^ It is a tour de force 
of criticism to exclude the Apostle of the Gentiles from any 
share in the decision which was the charter of their liberty. 

It remains then to consider whether there is any alternative identifica- 
to the hypothesis that Gal. ii. and Acts xv. refer to the same visits of 
events. Why should not the second visit mentioned by Paul QafiT ^"^ 
be the same as the second recorded in Acts, i.e. the ' Famine 

^ For details see Moffatt, op. cil. pp. 307 f. 

* A modern writer would have simply added a footnote, " See above for 
the arrangement already made with respect to Gentiles." But footnotes not 
being known the remark has to be put into the mouth of James, somewhat 
to the confusion of the critic. It might be well worth while to trace in ancient 
literature the results of the non-use of this great stand-by of the modern writer, 
and the methods by which the gap was filled. 


visit ' of Acts xi. ? This visit was undertaken by Barnabas 
and Paul in order to bring contributions from the Christians 
of Antioch for the relief of the Jewish Church. Barnabas had 
been sent to Antioch as a representative of the Mother Church 
to superintend the growth of the new community, with special 
reference to the preaching to Gentiles, and Paul had been already 
preaching and teaching actively for some time in the Gentile 
world (Acts xi. 26 ; Gal. i. 22 f.). Hence, even if we had been 
told nothing about it, we should have been bound to assume 
that Barnabas made some sort of report to those by whom he 
had been sent, and that the Gentile question came under dis- 
cussion. The idea that this question could not have been 
raised at so early a period is contradicted by the notices in Acts 
xi. of the missionary activity of the Antiochean church ^ as well 
as by all a priori probabilities. 

It becomes increasingly clear that it is a mistake to regard 
Paul as the founder of Hellenistic or even of Hellenic Christianity. 
There were Christians in Damascus before the conversion of 
Paul ; the Greek Christianity at Antioch had its origin apart 
from his efforts ; even the Church at Rome — certainly consisting 
of Greek as well as Jewish Christians — was in existence before 
Paul came to Italy. ^ The problem of the recognition of these 
communities and their missionary activity must have soon 
attracted notice. The kind of discussion implied in Gal. ii. is 
precisely what we should expect at this stage. It is private 
and informal, dealing with the general principle of a mission 
to the Gentile world. If details as to the conditions on which 
the new converts were to be accepted were raised at all, they 

^ In Acts xi. 20, "EXXT^vas (' Greeks,' i.e. Gentiles), not 'YiW-qvLards 
(Greek-speaking Jews), is probably the right reading ; see commentary. 

^ Bousset has a remarkable paragraph on this point in his Kyrios Christos, 
p. 92. " Between Paul and the Palestinian primitive church stand the Hellen- 
istic churches in Antioch, Damascus, Tarsus. ... In any case the develop- 
ment of the Apostle's life took place in the foundation of the Hellenistic 
churches." See also HeitmiiUer's article " Zum Problem Paulus und Jesus," in 
the Zeifschrift f. neutestamentl. Wiss. xiii. (1912), pp. 320 fif., and Loisy, Le3 
Mysteres pa'iens, pp. 318 S. 


clearly remained unsettled. There is therefore ample room for 
the public and formal Council of Acts xv., where outstanding 
questions were debated and more or less settled, and we need 
not be seriously disturbed by the suggestion that we are making 
history repeat itself. 

There are one or two minor points which go to confirm this 
view, (a) ' Went up by revelation ' in Gal. ii. 1 corresponds 
excellently to the prophecy of Agabus in Acts xi. (6) There 
is no difficulty in placing the dispute at Antioch (Gal. ii. 11 fi.) 
in its proper place before the Council, perhaps during the events 
of Acts XV. 1 &. On the ordinary view we have either to place 
this episode after the Council or else to suppose that St. Paul 
introduces it entirely out of its proper order ; each of these 
alternatives is attended by serious objections.^ (c) In Gal. ii. 10 
we read that the apostles laid down the condition " only they 
would that we should remember the poor, which very thing I 
was also zealous to do." The aorist eajrovhaoa fits in well with 
the fact that Paul had actually just brought alms to Jerusalem : 
it is almost a pluperfect.^ On the other hand, if we transfer the 
whole scene to a later date and see in the remark an anticipation 
of the great collection for the Saints, the tense is quite wrong. 
We should expect either i^fieWov iroielv ' was about to do,' 
from the point of view of the interview, or else ' am eager to do ' 
from the point of view of the period at which the Epistle was 
written, siuce, on the ordinary dating, Galatians belongs to 
the group in which this collection plays a prominent part. 

It is, however, objected that there were no apostles in Jeru- Apostles ii 
salem at the time of the Famine ; presbyters alone are mentioned "^®'^"^'*'^™- 
in Acts xi. 30, and it is suggested that all the Twelve had left 
Jerusalem on account of Herod's persecution. The fact, however, 

1 See p. 326. 

^ " The pluperfect was never very robust in Greek. . . . The conception 
of relative time never troubled the Greeks ; and the aorist which simply states 
that the event happened is generally quite enough to describe what we should 
like to define more exactly as preceding the time of the main verb " (Moulton, 
Grammar of N.T. Greek, i. p. 148). 


that the alms were handed over to the presbyters does not 
necessarily imply that there were no apostles to receive them, 
but merely carries out the principle of Acts vi. that it was not 
their business ' to serve tables.' Further, if we regard the 
narrative of Acts as arranged in strict chronological order, Paul 
and Barnabas reached Jerusalem before the outbreak of Herod's 
persecution, in which case there is no reason to assume the 
absence of the Apostles. The probability, however, is that this 
order is not closely observed. Luke is passing backwards and 
forwards from Jerusalem to Antioch. Having brought the 
story of Antioch up to the famine {circa a.d. 46), he resumes the 
thread of events at Jerusalem with chapter xii., leading up to 
the death of Herod in a.d. 44. But Acts xii. does not suggest 
that all the apostles or even Peter ^ fled from Jerusalem to escape 
persecution. And even if we do assume that he and others left 
the city there is no reason whatever why they should not have 
returned by a.d. 46-47, since the persecution ceased with the 
death of Herod. 
Chronology. A more serious difficulty arises in connection with the 
chronology. In Gal. i. 18 we read, " Then after three years 
(/iera rpia err]) I went up to Jerusalem " ; and in ii. 1. " Then 
after the space of fourteen years {Sia 8€KaT€aadpo)v €to)v) I went 
up again to Jerusalem." The question is whether the ' fourteen 
years ' are to be reckoned from the conversion, or from the 
former visit. The two expressions are clearly parallel ; in the 
first the ' after three years ' seems to be reckoned from the 
conversion, and not from the return from Arabia to Damascus, 
which is the last-mentioned movement. It is therefore quite 
possible that the ' after fourteen years ' is to be calculated on 
the same principle ; and that Paul throughout is dating his 
movements from his conversion, which he takes as his starting- 
point. In this case we only require ' fourteen years ' from the 

^ The theory that Peter left Jerusalem depends entirely on the interpreta- 
tion of ^repos TOTTos in Acts xii. 17, as meaning ' another city.' It may mean 
' another house,' of. Acts iv. 31. 


conversion to the famine visit, and the chronological difficulty 
disappears. We have, however, to reckon with the possibility 
that the ' fourteen years ' are to be reckoned from the ' three 
years.' Even so, it is still open to us to date Gal. ii. at the time 
of the famine. We must remember that according to the old 
method of reckoning time, fractions of a day or year were often 
spoken of as wholes ; e.g. ' after three days ' might mean from 
late on Friday afternoon till early on Sunday morning.^ Accord- 
ingly, we have no right to add the three years and the fourteen 
together, and to speak of an interval of seventeen years, as is 
usually done. The true state of the case may be best repre- 
sented as follows : 

' After three years ' = cc + 1 + y \ 

' After fourteen years ' = (!—?/) + 12 + z; 
where x, y, z are unknown nimabers of months. The total 
period is therefore fourteen years + {x + z) months, where x and z 
may be quite small. To put it in another way, December 1909 
to March 1911 might be the first period, and March 1911 to 
January 1924 the second, the whole period from December 
1909 to January 1924 being just over fourteen years. Since 
the famine visit probably took place in a.d. 47, the resultant 
date for Paul's conversion is about a.d. 32, which is by no means 

Assuming, then, the identity of the visits of Acts xi.and Gal. ii. Date of 
we remove the difficulty which arises on account of the supposed 
omission of the former by Paul. We have still, however, to 
explain why he does not continue his story up to the time of 
the Council, and clinch his argument by quoting its decision. 
The obvious answer is that the Council had not yet taken place ; 
in other words, Galatians was written at the close of the first 

^ Cf. Ramsay, Hastings's Diet, of the Bible, v. p. 474. 

^ A different solution may be found in the suggestion, based on quite 
other grounds, of a primitive corruption in the text of Gal. ii. 1, whereby, by 
the addition of a single iota, ' fourteen ' has been substituted for ' four.' See 
Lake, " The Date of Herod's Marriage with Horodias " (Expositor, November 


Missionary Journey, and not, as is usually assumed, during 
the course of the third. A full discussion of this view obviously 
belongs primarily to a commentary on that Epistle,^ but at 
the same time it has a direct bearing on Acts, since, as has 
been pointed out, the omission in Galatians of any real reference 
to the decrees of the Council makes it almost impossible to accept 
Luke's account, except on the assumption that it lay still in 
the future. It must here be taken for granted that the Epistle 
was in fact addressed to the Churches of South Galatia, evangelised 
on the First Journey ; ^ on the rival view the hypothesis of the 
early date becomes of course impossible. On his return from 
this journey Paul remained at Antioch ' no little time ' (Acts 
xiv. 28) ; and we have no right to assume that events summarised 
in a few verses all happened in a few days. During this period 
Judaisers from Jerusalem came to Antioch ; and there is nothing 
improbable in supposing that they also extended their pro- 
paganda to the Churches just founded by Paul, in which the 
strong Jewish element described in Acts xiii., xiv. guaranteed 
a favourable soil, St. Paul, while occupied in the controversy 
at Antioch, hears of the defection of the Galatian Churches 
which has been brought about with an unexpected ease and 
celerity (Gal. i. 6). He cannot visit the scene himself (iv. 20), 
perhaps because he knows he must go to Jerusalem, or is even 
already on the way there. Accordingly he writes this urgent 
appeal in order to stop the mischief at once ; and on the first 
opportunity he follows it up by a personal visit, in which he 
explains the decisions of the Council (Acts xvi. 1-6). On this 
reconstruction of the course of events Acts and Galatians dove- 
tail into one another quite naturally without any forcing of 
language or adroit manipulation. 

^ See Emmet, Commentary on Galatians, quoted above, and Lake, The 
Earlier Epistles of St. Paul, pp. 297 £E. A similar conclusion as to the date of 
Galatians has now been reached by Ramsay, though on somewhat different 
lines ; see The Teaching of Paul, pp. 372 S. Cf. also Douglass Round, The 
Date of Galatians. 

* See note on xvi. 6. 


The possible objections are slight. It is urged that ro 
TTporepov in Gal. iv. 13, impKes that Paul had visited Galatia 
twice at the time of his writing, whereas the theory advanced 
implies that the Epistle was sent after his first visit and before 
the second. But, even assuming that ro irporepov in Gal. iv. 13 
means ' the first time ' and not merely ' formerly,' the reference 
may quite well be to the double journey mentioned in Acts. 
Each town, except Derbe, was visited twice, and on the return 
visit Paul stayed long enough to instruct his converts and 
appoint Elders. 

It is also argued that Romans, Galatians, and the two epistles Romans 
to the Corinthians are so closely connected that they must all Galatians 
belong to the same period, that is to the time of Paul's Corinthian- 
Ephesian mission. But the close connection in language, subject, 
and style between Galatians and Romans, and to a lesser degree 
1 and 2 Corinthians, does not compel us to suppose them all 
to have been written at the same period. Galatians is clearly 
the hasty sketch, thrown out on the spur of the moment, under 
the pressure of an urgent crisis, while Romans represents the 
carefully matured, almost philosophical development of the 
same theme, written at a time when the most pressing danger 
had passed away.^ Nor need we be greatly troubled by sugges- 
tions that Paul's theology could not have reached the stage of 
development shown in Galatians at so early a period. He had 
been a convert and a preacher for many years, and by the tmie 

^ To argue from similarity of style to identity of date is one of those critical 
rules of thumb which, except where it is confirmed by other indications, only 
simplifies at the cost of misleading. There are literary parallels in plenty, 
where a writer produces works marked by the same style, separated by others 
in which a quite different style is found. We may instance Tennyson and 
The Idylls of the King. " Morte d' Arthur " was written in 1842, " Balin " 
thirty years later, the rest being produced at varying intervals. The fact that 
the student of Tennyson may be able to detect differences between the earlier 
and later parts, does not affect the general homogeneity of language and style 
in works published at very different times and separated from one another by 
poems in which quite other styles were adopted. 

With regard to the admitted priority of Galatians see Turner, H.D.B. i. 
p. 423 ; Sanday and Headlam, Romans, p xxxviii. 


of the Council he must certainly have thought out the general 
lines on which he was to defend the inclusion of Gentiles. The 
question is not referred to in the subsequent epistles to 
Thessalonica, simply because it had not arisen in that Church ; 
a missionary and less argumentative type of letter is all that 
is needed. 

A minor objection has been found in the language of Acts 
XV. 3,1 " They [sc. Paul and Barnabas] . . . passed through 
both Phoenicia and Samaria, declaring the conversion of the 
Gentiles ; and they caused great joy unto all the brethren." 
It is argued that this excludes the supposition that there was 
at this very time a grave danger of defection in the Galatian 
Church. But all that is implied in the words is that the Apostles 
told the story of their successes, and that the news was welcomed. 
The fact of the conversion of the Gentiles still remained, even 
if at the moment there was cause for anxiety. Luke, it is true, 
omits to mention the troubles with the Galatians — a far less 
significant fact than his silence about those at Corinth — but 
this makes no difference to the argument as to whether the 
Galatian difficulty arose early or late. 
Luke's With regard to Luke's silence itself we must remember that 

he wrote at a time when these temporary disagreements had 
been settled. They loom large to us because we happen to 
have letters written at a time when they were acute. But to 
the historian, writiag after a lapse of years, they may well 
have appeared comparatively unimportant. The fact that he 
mentions the differences of opuiion which led to the Council, 
and such things as the deceit of Ananias and Sapphira, and the 
quarrel between Paul and Barnabas, may be enough to absolve 
him from the charge of deliberately glossing over the troubles 
of the early Church. There was, however, no reason why he 
should mention them aU, nor did he write with the view of 
enabling future generations to illustrate the letters of his friend. 

^ See IMaurice Jones, The New Testament in the Twentieth Century, pp. 
249 ff. 



It may be said again that if the Council were already in 
prospect when Paid wrote the Epistle, we should still expect 
him to refer to it ; and thus the old difficulty recurs in a new 
though less serious form. The answer, however, is not hard 
to find. Paul's position at the time of the Council must 
have been that if the decision was fairly favourable to him he 
would accept it, but not otherwise ; we cannot conceive of 
the writer of Galatians as ready to acquiesce if the Apostles 
had taken the side of the Judaisers.i Hence while the Epistle 
seems to be a sketch of the arguments he was using in the con- 
troversy, he could not tie his hands by telling his converts to 
wait patiently for the result of a conference which he might 
find himself obUged to throw over. It is further quite pos- 
sible to escape the difficulty altogether by supposing that the 
Epistle was written before the decision to go to Jerusalem was 
arrived at. 

A last objection is found in the circumcision of Timothy, 
which, it is urged, is inconceivable after the ^vriting of Galatians. 
This, however, can hardly hold good in view of the special 
circumstances attending the case ; see further p. 293 below. 

To sum up ; it has been necessary to treat with some fulness 
the difficulties connected with the relation of Acts and Galatians, 
since their solution is crucial to the position of the former as a 
historical document. It has been suggested that these difficulties 
disappear almost entirely if the three points for which we have 
argued can be made good : (1) That Acts xi. and Gal. ii. refer 
to the same events ; (2) that Galatians was written to the 
Churches of South Galatia ; (3) that it was written before the 
Council of Acts xv. It may be maintained with some con- 
fidence that the objections are in no case serious ; the positive 
arguments are derived from the jyrirna facie evidence of both 

^ " Lest by any means I should be running, or had run, in vain," cannot 
be understood as implying that Paul was ready to confess that he had been 
wrong if the decision went against him. What the words mean is that such a 
decision might involve the practical failure of his work and the ruin of Gentile 


books, if only we approach that evidence without presuppositions 
which have held the field too long unchallenged. 

II. Indirect Coincidences and Discrepaj>tcies 

The coincidences between Acts and the Pauline Epistles are 
as follows : (1) Jerusalem, not Galilee, as we should have expected 
from Mark and Matthew, became the centre of the primitive 
church. (2) Believers are called ' disciples,' ' saints,' ' brethren,' 
but Luke, though he knows the name, agrees with Paul in not 
calling them Christians. (3) The Twelve are the rulers of the 
community ; and Luke and Paul both specifically mention 
Peter and John by name. (4) Side by side with them are other 
apostles, Barnabas (Acts xiv. 14) being mentioned. (5) James 
and the other brethren of the Lord take a prominent place. 
(6) Baptism is connected with the forgiveness of sins, and is 
administered by the Apostles and others in the name of Jesus 
(Acts viii. 16, xix. 5 ; 1 Cor. i. 14 fi.). (7) Thanksgiving 
{ev')(^apt(jTia) and the Breaking of Bread are closely connected 
(Acts XX. 7, xxvii. 35 ; 1 Cor. x. 16, xi. 23, xiv. 16). (8) The 
death and resurrection of Jesus hold the central place, though 
we must admit that Luke does not interpret them in the 
characteristically Pauline way. (9) The expectation of the 
Parousia is prominent both in the early chapters of Acts and 
in the earlier Pauline Epistles. Some of these coincidences 
may seem obvious and commonplace but they are significant 
References On the North Galatiau theory we of course learn nothing 

Pauline from Acts bcyond the mere fact of the founding of the Church, 

(a) Galatia. 

but on the South Galatian theory we find several coincidences 
between Galatians and Acts xiv., e.g. in the mention of Barnabas 
as well known (Gal. ii. 1), miracles (iii. 5), persecutions (iii. 4, 
V. 11, vi. 12 ; cf. 2 Tim. iii. 11),^ and possibly the reception 

^ Even if the Pastorals are not Pauline, this may well be one of the Pauline 
notes embodied in them. 


of Paul as " an angel of God," iv. 14 fE. ; cf. Acts xiv. 
11, where Paul is Hermes, the messenger, or angelos, of the 

Acts and the Epistles to the Thessalonians confirm one (6) 
another in the following points : the presence of a large Gentile lomca. 
element in the Church (Acts xvii. 4 ; 1 Thess. i. 9, ii. 14), the 
hostility of the Jews (Acts xvii. 5 ; 1 Thess. ii. 14), the close 
association of Silas and Timothy, and the stress laid by Paul 
on ' the kingdom ' (Acts xvii. 7 ; 1 Thess. ii. 12 ; 2 Thess. i. 5), 
with the consequent special interest in the Parousia. 

There is sometimes supposed to be a contradiction between 
Acts and these Epistles with regard to the length of Paul's stay 
in Thessalonica. The Epistles seem to imply that this lasted 
for some time while Acts only mentions three Sabbaths (xvii. 2). 
The latter, however, may refer only to the period of preaching 
to the Jews, and it may be reasonably argued that Luke's 
narrative as a whole suggests a longer stay. 

A somewhat complicated, though not really important, 
question arises with regard to the movements of Timothy and 
Silas. According to Acts xvii. 14, they are left in Beroea and 
rejoin Paul at Corinth (xviii. 5). But 1 Thess. iii. 1 If.^ seems 
to imply that they were at one time with Paul at Athens, and 
that Timothy was sent from there to Thessalonica. It is possible 
to combine the two accounts by supposing that Timothy and 
Silas did in fact rejoin Paul at Athens, and that Timothy was 
sent away again to Thessalonica, and Silas on some other 
mission, perhaps to Philippi, both meeting Paul again at 
Corinth. If this be the explanation, we admit that Luke was 
either not accurately informed of the movements of Paul's 
companions, or else expressed himself badly. This point is 
of so little importance to the historian that he may well be 

^ This need not imply that Paul would have acknowledged Hermes as an 
angel of God. 

* " Wherefore wlien we could no longer forbear we thought it good to be 
left behind at Athens alone ; and sent Timothy our brother ... to establish 
you. . . . But when Timothy came even now unto us from you ..." 


forgiven if he did not consider meticulous accuracy to be 
(c) Corinth. Paul's work at Corinth coincided with a period of weakness 
and depression (1 Cor. ii. 3, " And I came to you,"), which is 
readily explained by his experiences in Europe and his failure 
at Athens as narrated in Acts ; he needed a special vision to 
encourage him (Acts xviii. 9 f£., ' fear not '). Special references 
are made to his practice of continuing to work at his trade 
(xviii. 3 ; 1 Cor. ix. 15 ff. ; for other references see Acts xx. 34 ; 

1 Thess. ii. 9 ; 2 Thess. iii. 7). Crispus is a prominent convert 
(Acts xviii. 8 ; 1 Cor. i. 14) ; Aquila and Priscilla are known 
at Corinth (xviii. 3 ; 1 Cor. xvi, 19), and have moved to Ephesus 
Acts xviii. 18 fi.).^ The presence of ApoUos in Corinth (1 Cor. 
i. 12, etc.), though only for a short time, since xvi. 12 mentions 
him at Ephesus, is attested by Acts xviii. 27, and Luke's mention 
of his visit to Achaia may indicate that he was aware that it 
had had important consequences. Apollos was evidently in a 
sense responsible for the divisions referred to in 1 Corinthians, 
and Luke may be hinting at these in this passage, though he 
makes no further reference to them.^ A final visit to Corinth 
by way of Macedonia is attested both by Acts xx. 1, and 2 Cor. 
ii, 12,* while Acts xx. 3 ff. explains why Paul returned the same 
way and did not carry out his intention of going direct from 
Corinth to Jerusalem (2 Cor. i. 16). 

The reference in 1 Cor. xv. 32 is hardly to the affair of 

^ E. von Dobscliiitz holds that Timothj' and Silas were stopped from coming 
to Athens by a message from Paul sending them elsewhere, and that thej' did 
not actually rejoin him till he was at Corinth ; but 1 Thess. iii. implies that 
Paul had not previously been alone. 

^ The Sosthenes of 1 Cor. i. 1, is probably not identical with the Sosthenes 
of Acts xviii. 17, who is a Jew, and hostile to Paul, unless it be supposed 
that he afterwards became a convert and migrated to Ephesus. " The name 
Sosthenes was not rare among the Greeks " (Wendt). 

' In the same way we hear nothing in Acts of the trouble dealt with in 

2 Corinthians and of the implied journeys and missions between Ephesus and 

* 1 Cor. xvi. 5 may refer to an earlier visit or to a plan which was not 
carried out ; see 2 Cor. i. 15 fi. 


Demetrius, in Acts xix., since Paul did not figure directly in it. 
It may refer to some danger or imprisonment about which Acts is 
silent ; cf. 2 Cor. i. 8, xi. 23. For the relation of 1 Corinthians 
to the Council, see above, pp. 274 f. 

Romans and Acts agree in implying that at the time the {d) Rome. 
Epistle was written Paul wished to visit Rome, but had been 
unable to do so (Acts xix. 21 ; Rom. i. 13, xv. 23) ; the passage 
in Acts emphasises precisely the point he mentions himself, 
that he must first visit Jerusalem.^ A somewhat perplexing 
difficulty arises from the language of Acts xxviii. 21 iT.,^ where 
the Jews in Rome are represented as knowing nothing of Paul 
or even of Christianity except that "it is everywhere spoken 
against." It is argued that this is inconsistent with the epistle, 
which implies the existence of a Christian Church in Rome, 
comprising a Jewish as well as a Greek element, and interested 
in the relation between Christianity and the Law : in view of 
this, it is hard to believe that there had been no collisions between 
Jews and Christians in Rome,^ or that the former could have 
been entirely ignorant of the new religion. The explanation 
of Luke's language may be that the Jews in Rome were in fact 
less hostile than elsewhere, while for reasons of their own they 
disavowed acquaintance with Christianity. At any rate, the 
statement is not one which a writer — least of all a late writer 
with Romans before him — would be likely to invent, though he 
may, of course have misunderstood the position of the Roman 
Jews. Acts ii. 10 and xxviii. 15 show that Luke did in fact 
recognise the existence of Christianity in Rome before Paul's 

There are somewhat remarkable coincidences in the names Minor 

points of 

^ " If we closely compare Acts xix. 21 with Rora. xv. 23-25, we are astonished contact, 
at the completeness of coincidence in the two passages " (Harnack, Neue 
UntersuchvMgen zurApg. p. 49, n. 1 (Eng. trans., Date of the Acts and the Synoptic 
Gospels, p. 69, n. 2)). 

" See on this passage Harnack, Lukas tier Arzf, p. 92, n. 3 (Eng. trans., 
Luke the Physician, pp. 130 ff. 7i.). 

* The words of Suetonius {Claud. 25), " ludaeos impulsore Chresto assidue 
tumultuantes Roma expulit," certainly suggest such collisions. 



of minor characters in the Acts and the Pauline Epistles. Apollos, 
Aquila and Priscilla, and Timothy have already been referred 
to. There is no reason to doubt the identity of the Silas of Acts 
with the Silvanus i of 1 Thess. i. 1 ; 2 Thess. i. 1 ; 2 Cor. i. 19. 
In the list in Acts xx. 4 f., Sopater is probably the Sosipater of 
Rom. xvi. 21 ; Aristarchus (cf. xix. 29, xxvii. 2) is mentioned 
in Col. iv. 10, Philem. 24 ; Tychicus occurs in Col. iv. 7, Eph. vi. 
21, 2 Tim. iv. 12, Titus iii. 12 ; Trophimus (cf. xxi. 29) in 2 Tim. 
iv. 20, while Gains of Derbe might be identical with the Gains 
of Rom. xvi. 23, though the name is common.^ On the other 
hand, the Secundus of Acts xx. is not elsewhere mentioned, 
a fact which suggests that the list is not made up of names taken 
at random from the Pauline Epistles. A similar conclusion may 
be drawn from the omission in Acts of the names of Titus and 

The references in Acts and in the Epistles to the collection 
for the Saints afiord an example of undesigned coincidence, 
in the language of psychical research ' a cross-correspondence,' 
being quite incidental and yet supplementing one another in 
a very remarkable manner. Luke says nothing about the 
brmging of alms as the main reason of Paul's last journey to 
Jerusalem until xxiv. 17, where it appears clearly .^ On the 
other hand, in the Epistles of this period there are frequent 
references showing the importance Paul attached to the collection 
and the trouble he took in securing contributions from all his 
Churches (Rom. xv. 25 ff. ; 1 Cor. xvi. 1 ; 2 Cor. viii. ix.). The 
charge and promise of Gal. ii. 10 explain why Paul felt himself 

^ The view of Weizsacker is that a Jerusalem Silas has been substituted 
for the Pauline Silvanus as a companion of Paul in order to emphasise his close 
connection with the Jerusalem Church. But if they were really different 
persons, the natural thing would have been for the writer of Acts to complete 
the identification by using the name Silvanus instead of the ambiguous Silas. 

^ But not with the Gaius of Acts xix. 29, who is a Macedonian, or the 
Corinthian of 1 Cor. i. 14 ; the Gaius of Rom. xvi. 23 is generally identified 
with the latter. The point depends on the provenance of Romans xvi. 

^ Wendt suggests that the SiaKovia of xx. 24 may have originally {i.e. in 
the supposed source) referred to this. 


especially bound to this work, a point which Acts does not 
mention. In the light of these references, it becomes clear that 
the companions of Paul (Acts xx. 4) whose presence is not ex- 
plained, are, in fact, the delegates chosen by the Churches (1 Cor, 
xvi. 3 ; 2 Cor. viii. 18 ff.). There is no serious difficulty in the 
fact that Paul in Acts xxiv. 17 speaks of the collection as a gift 
to the Jewish nation ; it was intended specifically for Jewish 
Christians, and the Church was regarded as the true representa- 
tive of the nation. 

III. The General Presentation of Paul in Acts 

Is the description in Acts of Paul's conduct inconsistent with Paul and 
the Epistles ? ^ Before entering into detail the right point of 
view must be sought. If we confine our attention to Galatians, 
an Epistle written in the heat of controversy, we obtain a very 
one-sided impression of Paul's attitude. Both Corinthians and 
Romans contain indications of a more moderate standpoint, 
particularly when it comes to practical matters (see especially 
1 Cor. ix. 20), while even Galatians itself shows that Paul's 
own conduct was open to the charge of inconsistency. The fact 
was that he never forgot that he was a Jew, nor did he throw 
off altogether the effects of his early training. The wider the 
breach between his nation and Christianity, the more burning 
was his patriotic love, and the stronger the stress laid on the 
real privileges of the Jew (Rom. ix., x.). His behaviour did 
not arise from a desire for accommodation so much as from a 
certain illogicality inherent in his position. He never drew the 
conclusion that the Jewish Christian should cease to be a Jew or 

1 For a very full treatment of the question see Hamack, i\'e«e IJnter- 
suchungen zur AG, etc. (Eng. trans., Date of the Acts, etc.), chap. ii. ; Pfleiderer, 
Paulinism, ii. pp. 242 fE., both of whom defend the general presentation as 
given in Acts. For a statement of the case on the other side, see Jiilicher, 
Neue Linien i. d. Kritik d. evangel. Vberlief. pp. 59 f. (quoted by Hamack, 
pp. 25 f. (Eng. trans, p. 36)). 


hold himself exempt from the Law.^ This conclusion was 
drawn by a later generation and was no doubt implied in Paul's 
own teaching, especially in Galatians, but in a time of transition 
few men are entirely consistent or prepared to work out their 
principles to their logical issue when they run counter to long- 
estabhshed modes of thought. What Paul opposed in the Law 
was mainly its exclusiveness. The essential things for which 
he contended were the liberty of the Gentiles and the duty of 
the Jewish Christians to accept them as brethren. Here Acts 
suggests no tendency to compromise. It remains to examine 
the details of the objection. 

It is suggested that the view of Acts according to which Paul 
made it his practice to appeal first to Jews on his missionary 
journeys, and to preach in the synagogues as long as he was 
allow^ed to do so, is inconsistent with the arrangement made 
in Gal. ii. that he should go to the Gentiles and Peter to the 
Jews. But in any case, as the evidence of the Epistles shows, 
the separation of spheres spoken of here cannot be taken as more 
than a vague working agreement. It cannot have implied that 
Peter was never to preach to Gentiles or Paul to Jews. We find 
the former in the Gentile Churches of Antioch and, probably, 
Corinth. For though there must always be some doubt on the 
point, the mention in 1 Corinthians of a party of Cephas raises a 
presumption that Peter had been in Corinth, though it does not 
of course follow that he at once preached to the heathen. Simi- 
larly at Antioch Peter clearly mixed at first with all the Christians, 
though he afterwards had scruples (cf. Gal. ii. 11 f.). Once more 
this does not necessarily mean that he immediately preached to 
unconverted heathen, but the influence of Gentile Christians 

^ See to the contrary Gal. v. 3 ; 1 Cor. vii. 18. An interesting parallel may 
be found in the position of Luther. He began with a moderate position, and 
it was only force of circumstances which compelled him to go further. " Only 
gradually did he reach the position that a man can be saved apart from the 
Pope ; and he ended by saying that a man cannot be saved unless he opposes 
the Pope " (A. Plummer, The Continental Rfjormation, p. 102). Paul was less 


would inevitably bring him into contact with their unconverted 
friends. Paul, on his side, includes Jews in his letters, and is 
obviously concerned with them ; the arrangement was clearly 
understood as admitting of some overlapping. It was in fact 
inevitable that Paul should begin by preaching in the synagogues 
when he reached a fresh city, since it was there that he would 
find the ' God-fearers ' who formed the nucleus of each new 

The acceptance of the Conciliar decrees has been implicitly 
dealt with already (see above, pp. 273 fE.). If the Western text be 
adopted, there is, of course, no difiiculty. But with the ordinary 
reading the restrictive clauses are not to be interpreted as though 
they laid down a minimum of law necessary to salvation ; this, 
indeed, Paul could never have acknowledged. They are 
rather the practical recognition of certain usages, very possibly 
usages which already existed, intended to facilitate intercourse 
between the two sections of the Church ; to them the Paul of 
the Galatian Epistle might readily agree. 

The circumcision of Timothy (Acts xvi. 3) laid Paul open to 
a charge of inconsistency. This is naturally bound up with 
the vexed question whether Titus ^ was circumcised or not. 
However, in neither case had he yielded to the prejudices of the 
Judaisers in the Church. In view of what has been said above 
with regard to the peculiar, if we will the inconsistent, position 
Paul was bound to adopt at a time of transition, it is impossible 
to maintain that he could never have circumcised a half Jew, 
whether before or after the writing of Galatians. 

With regard to Paul's vow at Corinth (Acts xviii. 18), there Paul at 
is some doubt as to its nature, and also whether it was, in ^"''^"^^™' 
fact, taken by Paul or Aquila. Assuming the former, whatever 
the reason of the fact and of its mention by Luke, it must be 
considered in connection with Paul's similar action at Jerusalem. 
It is here that the objections as to the behaviour attributed to 

^ The text of Gal. ii. 3 ff. is very doubtful. 


Paul in Acts are at their strongest,^ and it may at once be 
admitted that there is much obscurity in the narrative of Acta 
xxi. 17 fE. But, as we have seen, it is clear from the Epistles 
that Paul lived as a Jew among Jews, and never urged them 
to abandon their nationality. Hence Luke's object was not so 
much to show that Paul was a strict Jew, but that he was still 
so far in sympathy with Judaism as to be able to take his part 
in a religious rite which did not compromise his principles. The 
false report of v. 21 which is thus to be refuted concerns his 
attitude towards Jews, not Gentile Christians. Paul's action 
does not necessarily imply that he himself had taken a vow, still 
less that he recognised the ceremonial law as a means of securing 
salvation ; it is precisely the role that could be played by any 
liberal sympathiser with Judaism like Agrippa.- The action 
was performed at a period when Paul was anxious to avoid any 
formal breach with the Mother Church of Jerusalem, and if 
possible to win his nation (cf. Romans). Further, as both 
Pfleiderer and Harnack ^ point out, Luke's sUence as to any 
further help or support of Paul on the part of the Jewish 
Christians is strongly against the view that the whole incident 
is an invention due to a ' tendency ' to over-emphasise the 
friendly relations between the two. The difficulty is psycho- 
logical rather than historical. 

With respect to Paul's attendance at feasts, if this seems to be 
inconsistent with Gal. iv. 10, so is 1 Cor. xvi. 2 (cf. Rom. xiv. 
5 fE.). Paul's object in visiting Jerusalem at the festal seasons 
may have been to meet friends from all quarters of the world,* 
though he had also the idea of proving publicly that he had not 
broken entirely with Judaism. 

1 Cf. pp. 320 f. 

- See Josephus, Ant. XIX. 6. 1, where Agrippa " ordered that many of the 
Nazirites should have their heads shorn," i.e. paid for their sacrifices. Was 
Paul's action, as Harnack suggests, a way of expending part of the contribu- 
tion he had brought ? 

* Pmdinism, ii. p. 245 ; Date of the Acts, pp. 51, 81. 

* The fact that a man may desire to spend Easter in Rome does not imply 
a complete sympathy with the teaching and practice of Roman Cathohcism. 


It has often been assumed that if Acts is by a companion Paul's 
of Paul, not only must his teaching as represented therein be ;„ ^^tg" 
clearly and exclusively ' Pauline,' but the teaching of Acts as a 
whole must fit in with the same scheme. The fallacy is obvious ; 
Luke may have admired the Apostle without really understand- 
ing him or accepting his full system, and there is certainly no 
reason to expect the whole of Acts, or the Third Gospel, to be 
impregnated with more than a mild solution of Paulinism. 
The controversial Epistles do not represent Paul's normal 
missionary preaching ; of this the Epistles to the Thessalonians 
are a far better type. And with regard to the representation 
in Acts of the teaching of Paul himself it must be borne in 
mind that a companion of Paul might well have composed 
speeches for his hero, though indeed many have seen traces of 
Pauline thought in these. In the speech in the synagogue at 
Pisidian Antioch the first part is obviously a repetition of the 
sort of arguments put into the mouth of Stephen in Acts vii. 
Yet in the second part there are clear affinities with Galatians 
and Romans.i 

The speech at Athens is more important, especially in regard 
to the theory of Norden propounded in his Agnostos Theos, 
that it is based on a conventional type of preaching. But this 
is discussed elsewhere.^ The speech, moreover, has a parallel 
in Rom. ii. when Paul appeals to the natural religious conscious- 
ness of the Gentile world. 

With regard to the later speeches the main difficulty is con- Paul and 


nected with the line of defence adopted by Paul in Acts xxm. Pharisees. 
6, xxiv. 21, xxvi. 5 ff., where he tries to enlist the sympathy of 

^ Cf., for instance, the allusions to the Promise in Acts xiii. 23, 32, with 
Galatians, the phrase " the fullness of time " in Acts xiii. 27, 33, with Gal. iv. 4, 
and the ' tree ' (used of the Cross) in xiii. 29 with Gal. iii. 13. The words 
in xiii. 38, " By him every one that belie veth is justified from all things, from 
which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses," can be interpreted as 
meaning that the gospel is complementary to the Law. But this is not certain, 
and even if this be the meaning, it might be a contemporary':; misconception 
of Paul's difficult and subtle doctrine. 

^ See pp. 330 S- and commentary ad loc. 


the Pharisees by suggesting that the only question at issue is 
the Resurrection of the dead. It is argued that this is disin- 
genuous and unworthy of Paul, and that we cannot conceive 
him thus minimising his divergence from the Pharisees. But 
such a touch, if not authentic, must come from a period and 
author interested in suggesting a rapprochement between Chris- 
tianity and Pharisaism. There are, however, in later times, few, if 
any traces of such tendency ; on the contrary, each decade shows 
an increasing desire on both sides to emphasise the gulf between 
the Christian and the Jew. It is therefore probable that this hne 
of defence was that actually adopted by Paul. We know 
from Romans that this was just the period when he was especially 
eager and hopeful with regard to the conversion of his nation. 
It was quite natural that he should over-emphasise the position 
that Christianity was after all only the logical and historical 
development of Judaism, and argue that all turned on the 
resurrection, a behef which he shared with some of his opponents.^ 
Just as the Church is the true Israel, so is he himself the true 
Pharisee.^ And if there was any disingenuousness in the 
argument the difficulty is moral, not historical. 
The Jiilicher ^ finds in the Paul of Acts " a colourless rhetorical 

of St. Paul, representative of average Christianity " ; his portraiture is 
" woefully deficient and poor, just because it preserves absolutely 
nothing of the pecuHar characteristics of the man " ; the \\T:iter 
has not been able to " introduce into his portrait even one of 
the grand and noble characteristics of the Apostle," the conclu- 
sion of course being that Acts cannot be regarded as a historical 
work by a companion of Paul. It is evident that we are 
here on ground where subjective considerations play a very large 

1 In the same way a Christian Scientist might, and in fact often does, try to 
conciliate Church opinion by arguing that he is only insisting on the reality of 
prayer and the supremacy of spirit over matter. 

2 It is possible that this is suggested in the phrase of Gal. i. 15 : " Separated 
me from my mother's womb." 

3 As quoted by Hamack (see above, p. 291) : for Hamack's brief reply on 
this point, see op. cit. p. 89. 


part. It will probably be agreed that Luke's forte is not char- 
acter-drawing ; he is interested rather in facts. But, none the 
less, the portrait of Paul is correct so far as it goes. We have 
tried to show that there is nothing in Acts which is really un- 
worthy of the Paul of the Epistles ; nor can the hero of the ship- 
wreck narrative be described as a purely conventional or colourless 
figure. In the farewell at Ephesus we have a good example of 
the Apostle's love of his Churches, a characteristic which is very 
prominent in the Epistles, while the Barnabas episode (Acts xv. 
37 ff.) illustrates his stern insistence on his own point of view. 
And throughout the story there runs that combination of the 
mystical and practical elements in Paul which is generally 
recognised as his peculiar characteristic. We have no right to 
demand more than this from a companion of the Apostle. 

To sum up : we have devoted considerable space to the details Summary. 
of the relationship between Acts and the PauUne Epistles since 
apart from them it is easy to paint an impressive picture in 
general terms, either of agreement or contrast ; the real test 
can only be found in the details. One result at least stands out ; 
Acts is independent of the Epistles.^ It neither uses them nor 
corrects them in such a way as to suggest that they are before 
the writer. On the other hand, there is a sufiiciently remarkable 
general agreement in the picture of early Christianity, in the 
doings of Paul and his companions, and in the conception of 
his work and teaching. It is true that there are also apparent 
contradictions, but these are mainly on minor points ; if the 
cautions suggested above (p. 265) be borne in mind they do not 
affect the general credibihty of Acts, or destroy the possibihty 
of its coming from a companion of the Apostle. The most 
critical point is the story of Acts xv., and even here, as we have 
tried to show% there is a fair and reasonable solution of the diffi- 
culty, a solution not forced by any apologetic necessity, but 
suggested by Galatians itself. 

1 En. Bib., s.v. Acts, col. 42. Moffatt, Inir. Lit. N.T. p. 300, argues that 
there is no special rcsombh\nce in vocabulary between the two. 




The The tradition that Luke, the pupil of Paul, wrote the third 

oftheprob- Grospel and the Acts of the Apostles was thoroughly first dis- 
lem and puted by the Tubingen School, who fortified their position with 

its present j- .- o ' ± 

status. a mass of evidence and incisive criticism.^ 

Preparatory work had been done by M. Schneckenburger in 
his tJber den Ziveck der Apostelgeschichte (1841). For although 
he held fast to the trustworthiness and traditional authorship 
of Acts, he nevertheless attempted to prove that it is an historical 
work with the special purpose of defending Paul against his 
Judaistic opponents. He argued that only this special purpose 
wiU account for the peculiar selection of incidents, for the 
theological colouring which appears in the attribution to Peter 
of distinctly Pauline characteristics, and to Paul of Judaistic 
tendencies, and in general for the assimilation of the two chief 
Apostles to each other and for the frequency, in the last chapters, 
of Paul's speeches in his own defence.^ 

^ Chief works : F. Ch. Baur, Paulus, der Apostel Jesu Christi, 1845, English 
translation by Menzies, 1873, 1875 ; Ed. Zeller, Die Apostelgeschichte nach ihrem 
Inhalt und Ursprung untersucht, 1854 ; cf. ii. p. 72 ft., Enghsh translation 
by J. Dare, 1875, together with a translation of F. Overbeck's valuable 
essay (1870) in De Wette's Handbuch, in Williams and Norgate's Theological 
Translation Fund Library ; Schwegler, Geschichte des nach-apostolischen 
Zeitalters, 1846. 

- In his Paulus (1845), p. 5 £E., Baur refers directly to Schneckenburger. He 
acknowledges the reasonableness of Schneckenburger's fundamental methods 
of approach, but would carry them on further, alleging that Luke's authorship 
is inconsistent with his results. Cf. also Schwegler, Xachapost. Zeitalter, ii. 



Following out these ideas consistently, Baur and his school The School 
subjected the Acts of the Apostles to their investigations, which Tubingen. 
included all early Christian hterature, and tested it everywhere 
for such special purposes (Tendenzen). A\liat D. F. Strauss had 
done for the Gospels with his destructive criticism of their 
narratives, Baur and Zeller accomphshed for Acts. But they 
did not limit themselves, as Strauss had done, to the narratives, 
but strove especially to make clear the untrustworthiness of the 
speeches. The element of greatness in the Tiibingen criticism 
is to be found in the unity of the fundamental ideas by which 
it is dominated. We have to deal not with a rationalistic 
criticism of details, but with a brilliantly chosen point of view 
from which to examine and interpret the whole of the apostolic 
and post-apostolic age. In accordance with the HegeHan watch- 
word that all which happens is determined by the sequence, 
Thesis, antithesis, synthesis, the Tubingen School constructed 
two periods ; the first was one of embittered conflict between Paul 
and the Judaisers, who were at one with the original Apostles ; 
and the second was a period of conciliation, which gradually made 
itself effective and marked the transition from primitive Chris- 
tianity to Cathohcism. Acts was classed mider the documents 
of a conciliatory character. The Tubingen School argued that 
by a falsification of all the transmitted data, it painted a picture 
of complete harmony in thought and deed. From the beginning 
the original Apostles plan missions to the Gentiles ; Peter per- 
forms the first baptism of a Gentile, and justifies it with success 
before the original congregation ; in common with James he 
brings about the complete recognition of Paul's missionary work 
among the Gentiles, except that a measure of ritualistic observ- 
ance is imposed upon the Gentiles, to which Paul obediently 
submits. On the other hand, Paul appears as a true Jewish 

p. 75. Still greater agreement with Baur is to be seen in K. Schrader, Der 
Apostel Paulas, vol. v., 183G, and Aug. Gfrorer, Geachichte des Urchridentums, 
ii., "Die heilige Sage," 1838, (1) pp. 383-452; (2) pp. 244-47. Both scholars 
have disputed the trustworthiness of the Acts and the authorship of Luke, but 
they have had no influence upon the evolution of the criticism. 


Christian, unshakably faithful to the hopes and customs of his 
people ; as the reward of this conservatism he is recognised by 
all as the co-equal of the other Apostles. For this assertion 
evidence is to be found in the fact that in Acts miracles of the 
same value are ascribed to him as to Peter. If this is a fair 
picture of the special purposes (Tendenzen) to be found in Acts, 
then a comparison of this delineation with the four Pauline 
Epistles accepted as genuine by the Tubingen School (Rom., 
1 Cor., 2 Cor., Gal.) shows clearly that throughout the whole 
document the facts have been tampered with. The historical 
Paul was an irreconcilable anti-Judaist. The original Apostles 
had to take him exactly as he was without dictating anything 
to him whatsoever ; the mission to the Gentiles was rejected by 
the primitive congregation and assigned to Paul alone ; all his 
life long Paul had to suffer under the attacks of the Judaisers. 
The obvious conclusion was that it is not possible to consider 
Luke the author of Acts ; only a later comer could have produced 
such a document. No pupil of Paul could have falsified his 
own memories of Paul and his doctrines, corrected the import 
of his letters, invented miracles for his glorification, and on the 
other hand denied his autonomy, liberty, and independence. 
Antagonism The disputc which grew out of the position taken by the 
Tiibingen Tiibiugen School was long carried on. The opponents of the 
theory. Tiibingen School held their criticism of Acts to be exaggerated, 
endeavoured to harmonise the narrative of Acts with the testi- 
mony of the Pauline Epistles, and attributed to the sources which 
Luke used or to the inaccuracy of his memory anything which 
might be found incredible. The assumption that there were dis- 
tortions of fact for special purposes was most vigorously rejected. 
Present The notion that Biblical criticism has constantly to be on 

guard against the influence of special purposes in the documents 
which it investigates {Tendenzkritik) has been given up more and 
more in the course of years even among the friends of courageous 
criticism. We no longer talk about the policy of union, or 
about the deliberate assimilation of the pictures of the two 


apostles. Nevertheless, Luke's authorship of Acts is denied. 
The chief positions maintained to-day are : (1) The separation 
of the ' we ' source, which was the work of a companion of 
Paul, probably Luke, from the other material which the actual 
author of Acts has combined with it. (2) The demonstration 
that the author of Acts was unfamiliar with the general trend 
of primitive Christianity ; that, for example, he does not under- 
stand the gift of tongues — hence his presentation of the miracle 
of Pentecost — and represents, contrary to the historical facts, 
the original Apostles as initiating the missions to the Gentiles. 
(3) The demonstration that the author of Acts is ignorant 
of the peculiar character of Paul, obliterates his anti-Judaism, 
leaves unnoticed or reproduces in a completely distorted form 
the experiences that were decisive for him, especially his con- 
flicts, and does all this not so much because he has some special 
purpose in mind as because he is naively of the opinion that 
complete harmony prevailed between Paul and the original 

A new phase in the conflict about the author of Acts was Hamack's 
recently introduced by A. von Harnack.^ He beheves that, Lucan 
once the critical point of view of the Tubingen School has been ^^uthorsinp. 
given up, the retention of their denial of the authorship to Luke 
is inconsistent and can only be founded on prejudice or an in- 
abiUty to think psychologically. Harnack is far from defending 

1 Cf. A. Jiilicher, Einleitung in das Neue Testament, 1906, p. 391 £E. ; P. W. 
Schmiedel, "Acts of the Apostles" in Encycl. Bibl. pp. 37-57 ; P. W. Schmidt, 
Die Apontelgeschichte bei De Wette, Overbeck und bei Adolf Harnack, 1910 ; P. 
Wendland, " Die Literaturforinen des Neuen Testaments " (Lietzmann's Handb. 
zum N.T. i. (2) p. 314 fE.) ; H. H. Wendt, "Die Apostelgeschichte " (Meyer's 
Commentar, iii. 9th ed.), 1913; W. Briickner, Prot. Monatshefte, 1911, pp. 
139 ff., 179 ff., 219 ff., 270 ff., etc.; G. Hoennicke, Die Apostelgeschichte, 1913, 
p. 18 fE. 

2 Lukas der Arzt, 1906 ; Die Apostelgeschichte, 1908 ; Neue Untersuchungen 
zur Apostelgeschichte und zur A bfassungszeit der synoptischen Evangelien, 1911. Cf . 
concerning these, Schiirer, Theol. Literaturzeit. 1906, p. 405 ff. ; C. Clemen, Theol. 
Rundschau, 1907, p. 97 ff. ; Hibberl Journal, viii. pp. 780-799 ; W. Briickner, 
Prot. Monatshefte, 1911, I.e. ; P. W. Schmidt I.e. ; W. Bousset, Theol. Rundschau, 
1908, p. 185 ff. ; A. Jiilicher, "Die judisclien Schranken des Harnackschen 
Paulus," Prot. Monatshefte, 1913, pp. 1-20; M. Jones, The N.T. in the 20th 
Century, 1914, p. 227 ff. 


the credibility of the whole book when he defends its authen- 
ticity. He thinks that Luke was a credulous practitioner of 
medicine who was delighted to propagate the stories of miracles 
which were told him. But the representation of Paul seems to 
him on the whole to be correct. His chief arguments are the 
following : (1) The so-called ' we ' source comes from the 
author of the whole Lucan historical work, as is shown by the 
linguistic and stylistic unity.^ (2) The Jewish-Christian char- 
acter of the narratives and speeches, the importance attached 
to the original apostles, etc., are to be explained by the fact that 
Luke, the converted Gentile, held the Old Testament and the 
revealed Jewish religion in high respect.^ (3) The Jewish- 
Christian garb in which Paul appears in word and deed corre- 
sponds on the whole to the historical truth. Critics are inclined 
to exaggerate the freedom and the anti-Judaism of Paul. On 
the basis of the Epistles it can be demonstrated that Paul as far 
as he personally was concerned and in his hopes continued to be 
a genuine Jewish- Christian.^ To the contention that the Paul 
of Acts is not really the true Paul, it can be answered that Luke, 
though a friend of Paul, was no ' Paulinist,' * and was hardly 
able to conceive sympathetically and to the full the true nature 
of the great apostle. 

Harnack set Biblical criticism new tasks to accomplish. 

Every new investigator of the problem of the authorship must 

learn from him, and must meet his arguments. 

Dutch While the authenticity and integrity of the most important 

reversal of ^c ^^^ epistlcs of Paul are taken for granted by the scholars 

hypothesis, who are under the influence of the Tubingen School, and are 

used by them as a basis for discussing the credibility and 

authenticity of Acts, there have been scholars, notably among 

the Dutch, who have exactly reversed the presuppositions of the 

problem. They deny the authenticity of all the epistles and 

maintain that the representation of Paul as found in Acts is 

^ Cf. Lulcas der Arzt, p. 28 ff. ; Neue Untersuchungen, p. 1 ff. 

2 cf_ Lu]cas der Arzt, p. 91. 

3 Cf. Neuc Uyitersnch. pp. 21-62. ^ Cf. Lidas der Arzt, p. 99 ff. 


nearer the actual historical truth than the one in the Epistles. ^ 
The reasons for this opinion are very various ; the following 
are probably the essential ones : (1) The Paul of the Epistles is 
so superior in his christology to the synoptic tradition and so 
radical in his antinomism that he cannot possibly have been a 
younger contemporary of the Apostles. Decades were necessary 
before the evolution of the original Jewish-Christian Gospel had 
reached the point where Judaism could be done away with. 
The historical Paul cannot at best have advocated more advanced 
ideas than the doctrines and principles of the Paul of Acts. 
But these very doctrines and principles cannot be harmonised 
with those of the Epistles except in so far as they already represent 
a post-Pauline standpoint. 

In the place of the Hegel-Baur watchwords — thesis, antithesis, 
synthesis — the Dutch radicals have put the principle of Slow 
Evolution from Conservatism to Radicalism. The same phen- 
omena which the Tubingen School interpreted as indicative of a 
desire for union and conciliation, are held by the Radicals to 
be intermediate stages of the evolutionary process. 

(2) They hold that the form no less than the content forbids Pauline 
the belief that the Epistles are authentic Pauline productions. o^EpisUes 
They are not unified, but patched and interpolated, as general ^™'°'^- 
quite incomprehensible and impossible as letters. How could 
the Christians of Galatia have understood the dialectics of tlie 
Epistle bearing their name ? When would anybody ever have 
sent as a letter such a dogmatic disquisition as the Epistle to 
the Romans ? Every efEort to discover the conditions out of 
which the Epistles might have arisen, the circumstances of the 
persons to whom they are addressed, the relation of the writer 
to them, has been quite fruitless. 

1 Main works : Bauer, Kriiik der paulinischen Briefe, 1852 ; Lonian, 
Quaestiones Pmilinae Theol. Tijdschr., 1882 ff. ; A. Pierson and S. A. Naber, 
Verisimilia, 1886; van Manen, Pauliis, i. 1890, ii. 1891, iii. 1896; R. 
Steck, Der Galaterbrief nach seiner Echtheit imtersucht, 1888. Cf. the paragraphs 
by van Manen, in " Paul," Encycl. Bibl. pp. 3620-3638 ; G. A. van den Bcrgh 
van Eysinga, Die holldndische radilcale Kritik des neuen Testaments, 1912. The 
same author's Radical Views about the New Testament, 1912. 


The entrance of the school of radical criticism into the dis- 
cussion of the credibility and authenticity of Acts lends a new 
aspect to the whole situation, which, while it complicated the 
problem, increases its interest. To be sure, the Kadicals do not 
dream of ascribing Acts to Luke, but they compel us to recon- 
sider ever anew the question of the relation of the ' Pauline ' 
Paul and the ' Lucan ' Paul. 

(1) The 
' we ' 

The Considerations of space render it impossible to treat in detail 

on wS°°' all the critical questions of importance for the problem of 
our decision authorship, but as any opinion about the author depends entirely 
on the other problems of literary criticism connected with Acts, 
a brief consideration of the following propositions is essential : 
(1) First comes confidence in the reliability of the ' we ' in 
the so-called ' we ' sections (xvi. 10-17, xx. 4-16, xxi. 1-18, 
xxvii. 1-xxviii. 16).^ The effort has been made indeed to explain 
the ' we ' as a literary fiction on the part of the author,^ but 
the simplicity and the comprehensibility of the ' we ' narra- 
tives in contradistinction to all the others is, in my opinion, a 
sufficient proof of their genuineness. 

The question of the extent of the ' we ' narrative must be 
left undecided. There are three possible assumptions : (a) While 
only the above-mentioned sections are to be ascribed with con- 
fidence to the ' we ' narrative, they are to be conceived of as 
fragments of an originally more extended itinerary.^ (6) To the 
' we ' narrative belong still more extensive parts of the other 
reports about Paul, perhaps also parts of the narratives the scene 

^ The ' we ' in the /3-text xi. 28 I do not believe to be genuine. Cf . 
Harnack, Sitzungsberichte der Berliner Akademie, 1899, pp. 316-327, though 
many scholars are of a different opinion. Cf., for example, Zahn, Einl. in das 
N.T. ii. p. 338; Die Jpostelg. p. 377 ff. 

2 Thus B. Bauer, Die Apostelg., 1850, R. Reitzenstein, Hellenistische 
W under erzalilungen, p. 54, and in Ilberg's Neue Jakrbiicher f. d. klass. Altertum, 
1913, i. p. 417 f.) has recently expressed critical doubts and gives analogous 
cases of fictitious ' I ' and ' we,' but he is unwilling to deny that the ' we ' 
jn Acts has reference to actual personal experiences. 

3 Cf. Jiilicher, Einl. in d. N.T. p. 405 ff. 


of whose action is in Antioch and Jerusalem.^ (c) By the ' we ' 
is to be understood the author of the whole book, who therefore 
must have made use of his diary or was narrating from memory 
his own personal experiences. ^ Since it is generally assumed 
that the ' I ' who is concealed behind the ' we ' sections, is 
Luke, the acknowledgment of the validity of the third point 
of view would solve our problem in advance in agreement with 
the traditional belief. The decision of this question must be 

(2) With apparent leaning toward the traditional view, (2) Unity 
attention must be called to the pervasive lexical, stylistic, and 
redactional unity of Acts as it has been demonstrated by the 
representatives of the most varied points of view, and, what is 
especially important, with the inclusion of the ' we ' sections. ^ 

This assumption is far from settling the main problem in advance 
in favour of the tradition. The actual state of affairs permits 
here again two possibilities : the first, that the eye-witness who 
is speaking in the ' we ' sections did actually write the whole 
book ; and the second, that the ' we ' sections represent one 
of the sources which an author, not the ' I ' of the narrative, 
combined with other sources, and in the process created a literary 
unity out of the whole by revising all the sources to conform to 
his own style and language. Our decision and the reasons for 
it must again be withheld. 

(3) Closely involved with the question of the (relative) unity (3) Acts 
of Acts is the question of its homogeneity with the Third xhird^^ 
Gospel, which has been disputed frequently without adequate ^'O^p^^- 

1 Spitta, Die Apostelgeschichte, 1891 (Source A) ; J. Weiss, Vber Absicht 
und lit. Charakter der Apg. pp. 34:-51 ; H. Wendt, Die Apg. pp. 15-40 ; Ed. 
Norden, Agnostos Theos, p. 313 ff. 

■^ This is the traditional conservative opinion recently defended by Harnack 
(cf. above). Of. also IMoffatt, Introduction to the Literature of the N.T. 2nd ed. 
pp. 294-296. 

3 Gf. Ed. Zeller, Die Apostelgeschichte, pp. 387-413 ; van Manen, Paulus, 
i. 1-17 ; Th. Zahn, Einleitung in das N.T. 3rd ed. ii. pp. 415-425, 442-44G, 
498 ff. ; Ad. Harnac'k, Lukas der Arzt, p. 29 ff. ; Moffatt, Introduction, p. 297 ff. ; 
Sir John Hawkins, Ilorae Synopticae, 2nd ed. pp. 182-189 — the first edition 
of this work appeared in 1SS9. 



(4) Legends 

in Acts. 

(5) Pauline 



reason.^ But lexical, stylistic, and material points of contact 
between the two prove that both documents derive from the 
same author, so that Acts i. 1 is not a fiction.^ In this case 
again we do not anticipate the decision of the question whether 
Luke was this author or whether it was some unknown person 
who only used a writing of Luke's. 

(4) Acts, which in this also is similar to the Third Gospel, 
contains both accounts of events developed in legendary form 
or even legendary inventions, and freely composed speeches. 
Harnack especially has correctly pointed out that Luke himself 
was quite capable of taking over legends and of putting speeches 
of his own composition into the mouths of others, even of Paul. 
And the same scholar has laid especial emphasis on the fact 
that the miracles in the report of Paul's doings are much 
less m.arvellous and much less numerous than those of the 
first part of Acts.^ The question therefore reduces itself to 
this : Do the miracles and other distortions of history which 
we perceive in Acts, and the liberties which the author has 
allowed himself in the composition of the speeches, exceed the 
limit which we should naturally expect a man like Luke to 
observe ? 

(5) A further important assumption is the auilierUicity of the 
Pauline Epistles, with the exception of the Pastoral Epistles and 
perhaps also of the Epistle to the Ephesians. For the criticism 
of Acts the decLsion about the portrayal of Paul is of crucial 
importance. The following discussion is based only on the 
undoubtedly genuine Epistles. We can still put the question in 
the same form as the Tubingen School : Does the Paul of Acts 
harmonise with the Paul of the authentic Epistles, and are the 

^ Cf. J. H. Scholten, Is de derde evangelist de schrijver van het boek der 
Handelingen? 1873. Also A. Gercke, Hermes, 1894, p. 373 ff. has expressed 
doubts whether the author of the Lucan Gospel wrote Acts as well, especially 
the first part. Further discussion in C. Clemen, Paulus, i. p. 165. 

2 Cf. Ed. Zeller, op. cit. pp. 414-452 ; H. J. Holtzmann, Lehrbuch der Einl. 
in das N.T. 3rd ed. p. 301 ff. ; Th. Zahn, Einleitung, ii. p. 387 ff. 

3 DieApostelg. p. Ill ff. 


differences of such a sort that the delmeation of Paul as found 
in Acts is only comprehensible on the assumption that it is the 
work of one who had not personally known Paul ? We differ 
from the old Tubingen scholars only in not limiting the number 
of the authentic Epistles to four,i and in not demanding from 
a pupil of Paul in every respect a fully spiritual understanding 
and completely accurate presentation of Paul's activity and 

It is here that there is a real difference between our method 
of procedure and that of the radical critics of Holland. The 
arguments against them are principally the following : (1) The 
doctrine concerning Christ as it appears in the Epistles of Paul 
is quite comprehensible in the apostolic age, if we take into 
consideration the fact that where it is concerned the union of 
an already completely developed Cliristology with the figure of 
Jesus as the Messiah is an essential presumption.^ The antino- 
mianism of the Epistles is explained by the special circumstances 
accompanying the conversion of Paul, the former Pharisee and 
enemy of Christ, and by the demands of a broadly inclusive plan 
for the conversion of the heathen ; perhaps also by assuming 
that Paul's pre-Christian reHgion was not mere rabbinic Judaism, 
but a religion less satisfying and more pessimistic (as, for instance, 
the religion of the Ezra-apocalypse).^ And furthermore the anti- 
nomianism found in the Pauline Epistles is still very moderate 
compared with its later forms in Barnabas, the Gnosis, and in 
Marcion, since it still clings to the belief that the Old Testament 
is the enduring word of God's revelation and that the Jewish 
folk is still God's chosen people, or shall again become so. 
(2) However great is the difficulty which the Epistles offer us, 

^ By limiting themselves to the four Epistles the Tiibingen School gave up 
a very important piece of evidence, and one which is still important — the 
great anti-Jewish or anti-Judaistic polemic of Paul in Phil. iii. 

2 Cf. M. Briiclaier, Die Enlstehung der paulinischen Christologie, 1903 ; H. 
Windisch, " Die gottliche Weisheit der Juden und die paulinische Christologie " 
[Neutestamentliche Studien fur Heinrici), 1914, pp. 220-23^. 

' Cf. C. Montefiore, St. Paul and Judaism, 1914. 


they are nevertheless much more incomprehensible from a 
psychological point of view, if we take them to be pseudepigrapha 
or compilations. The radical criticism of Holland transfers the 
riddle from the first to the second century, but this transference 
is attended with the disadvantage that what is enigmatic in the 
first century becomes incomprehensible in the second. 

Our refusal to accept the results of this radical criticism, 
therefore, receives the support of excellent witnesses whose 
testimony is of decisive importance in the discussion of the 
authorship of Acts by a pupil of Paul. 

(6) Epistles (6) It is equally important to make clear that the Epistles 
Acts.* of Paul cannot have been used by the author of Acts. The 

Tiibingen School, consistently with their critical principle that 
Acts was written in defence of a special thesis, assume not only 
the use of the Pauline Epistles but the distortion of the historical 
data and the doctrine contained in them. When we have broken 
away from this principle we can assent to neither proposition. 
In fact very few of the similarities which some scholars still 
point out from time to time and wish to explain on the basis 
of the use of the Epistles,^ are at all impressive, and they cannot 
be used to support the hypothesis of such use, since Acts is on 
the whole independent of the Epistles, and its narrative is only 
intelligible if its author did not know them.^ 

(7) Date of (7) The determination of the date, which we must note as 
tion. ^' the last of our assumptions, is closely connected with our assump- 
tion that the Pauline Epistles were not used by the author of 
Acts. Acts must have been written at a time when, as yet, no 
collectio7is of PaiiVs letters had been spread abroad, and so could 

^ Cf. 0. Pfleiderer, Urchrisientum, 2nd ed. i. p. 532 ; H. J. Holtzmann, 
Handlcomm. zum N.T. i. 2, Die Apg. 3rd ed., 1901, p. 10 ; H. Schulze, Theol 
Stud, und Kritiken, 1900, pp. 119 ff. ; W. Soltau, Zeitschr. fur neut. Wiss., 1903, 
p. 133; van Manen, Paulus, i. pp. 58-74; W. Bruckner, Prot. Monatsh,, 1911, 
p. 284 ; Ramsay, St. Paul the Traveller, p. 385. 

* Cf. against the theory of utilisation Sabatier, UAuteur du litre des 
Actes des Apotres a-t-il connu et utilisedans son recit les epitres de St Paul ? 1889 ; 
R. Steck, Theolog. Zeitschr. atis der Schweiz, 1890, p. 153 ff. ; Th. Zahn, Einl. ii. 
pp. 414-418, 429 ; Wendt, Die Apg. pp. 40-42. 


not have been at the disposal of the author as an easily accessible 
source of information and one to be consulted as a matter of 
course. Nor could he have taken for granted that they would 
be in the hands of his readers. So that the preparation of an 
historical commentary to these letters cannot be taken as a 
motive for the composition of Acts. Now the first testimony to 
an acquaintance with one of Paul's Epistles outside the place for 
which it was originally intended is the first letter of Clement — 
where a knowledge at least of 1 Cor. and Rom. is manifest. A 
second witness is probably Ignatius, a third, Polycarp, etc.^ We 
may conclude therefrom that the dissemination of some of Paul's 
letters was beginning to be general from about 90 to 120 a.d., and 
it does not seem advisable to set the date of the composition of 
Acts later than about the close of the first century ; the 90's 
or the 80's would have much to recommend them in this respect. 
This terminus ad quern is commendable on other grounds like- 
wise. General persecutions of the Christians, furthered by the 
Roman government, seem to lie outside the author's field of 
vision 2 or he would hardly else have emphasised so industriously 
the moderation of the Roman officials. The gnostic danger was, 
to be sure, already threatening (cf. xx. 29 f.), but as yet 
the author did not consider a detailed refutation necessary. 
Finally, the hope of a ' parousia ' appears in Acts in a very 
weakened form. These three considerations recommend the 
period of the 80' s or 90's of the first century, although they 
do not exclude the assignment of Acts to the first decade of the 
second century. 

At the same time they fix the correct terminus a quo. I feel 
compelled to reject the assumption which has recently become 

1 Cf. The X.T. in the Apostolic Fathers, 1905. The date of composition 
of 2 Peter (cf. iii. 15 f.) is uncertain, so that his testimony cannot be used 

- The avTous rjvdyKa^ov ^Xaacp-nfj-eif which, in xxvi. 11, is put in the mouth 
of Paul, the Jewish persecutor of the Christians, cannot possibly be an imitation 
of the maledicere Ohristo demanded by Pliny (Epist. \. 9C). Cf. Hansrath, Jesua 
und die neut. Schriflsteller, 1909, ii. p. Idi. 


very popular and which is recommended even by Harnack,^ 
that the author of Acts — on this supposition naturally Luke — 
continued the narrative down to the date of composition, 
that is to say, he wrote it in Rome during PauVs imprisonment 
and completed it at the end of the first two years of his stay 
in that city. To be sure, this assumption is very enticing in 
that it is apparently the only one which really explains the 
enigmatic conclusion of Acts, which, from our point of view, is 
really no conclusion at all.^ 

But the hypothesis is rendered untenable by the considera- 
tion that the Third Gospel must, beyond dispute, have been 
written after the destruction of Jerusalem, and by the further 
consideration that Acts as a whole, with all its defectiveness and 
legendary character and other literary mannerisms, is a product 
of post-apostolic times. It seems strange at first, it must be 
confessed, that no reference is made ^ in Acts to the destruction 
of Jerusalem and the attendant humiliation of the Jews,* but 
the judgment which actually took place in the year 70 is ade- 
quately characterised in the Gospels and the disaster of the year 
70 by no means resulted in breaking the pride and self-confidence 
of the Jews, least of all in the Diaspora. Attention need only 
be called to the defence of Josephus Contra Apionem, written 

^ Cf. Apostelg. p. 217 ff. ; Neue Uniersuchungen, p. 65 ff. ; Belser, Einl. 
in das N.T. 2ad ed. p. 125 ff. For further representatives of this opinion, cf. 
Schafor-Meiiiertz, Einl. in das N.T. 2nd ed., 1913, p. 385. 

^ The hypothesis seems particularly attractive in the form which D. Plooij 
has recently given it. He assumes that Theophilus was not by any means a 
catechumen, but stood in close relations with the council with which Kero had 
to discuss Paul's lawsuit, and that Luke wrote his Gospel and Acts to serve in 
Paul's defence, and that he handed both books over to Theophilus and the 
stratopedarch mentioned in the Bezan text of xxviii. 16, that is, to Burrhus, 
so that they might convince themselves of the political innocuousness of Paul 
and the teachings he brought forward. Expositor, ser. 8, viii. pp. 511-523, xiii. 
pp. 108-124; cf. M. Jones, Exp. ser. 8, ix. pp. 217-234. A similar efEort was 
made earlier by Aberle, Tilb. theol. Quartalsch., 1855, 1863. Cf. also Hilgen- 
feld, Ztsch. fiir wiss. Theol, 1864, pp. 441-448; J. Weiss, Urchr. p. 106 f. ; de 
Zwaan, Handelingen der A post., 1920, p. 7 f. 
3 Harnack calls attention to this, loc. cit. 

* Cf. H. Windisch, "Der Untergang Jerusalems anno 70 im Urteil der 
Christen und Juden," Theol. Tijdschr., 1914, pp. 519-550. 


after a.d. 93. It is hardly to be supposed that the Jews in Asia 
Minor, IMacedonia, and Achaia were more active against the 
Christians in the 80's and 90's than in Paul's time. A particu- 
larly good proof for Asia Minor is to be found in Eev. ii. 9, 
iii. 9. This attractive explanation for the conclusion of Acts 
must therefore be abandoned. The hypothesis which Ramsay, 
Zahn, and others favour, that Luke intended to WTite a third 
volume, though possible, seems to me to be precarious.^ 

More plausible are the suggestions that the author felt that 
he had done enough when he had brought the account of Paul's 
testimony to Christ down to the \nsit to Rome (cf. xix. 21, 
xxiii. 11, xxviii. 14), and that he kept silence about the un- 
fortunate outcome of the trial, in order not to cloud the favourable 
picture of the Roman government which he paints elsewhere.^ 
Even better seems the assumption that the Lucan source brought 
the record only as far as Rome, and that the author could not 
procure any very reliable information about the later events.^ 
Whoever is imwilling to accept the validity of the latter explana- 
tion, has no choice but to put the close of Acts among the many 
things in the New Testament which, with all our knowledge, we 
are unable to explain. Under all circumstances the year 80 is 
to be maintained as the terminus a quo.^ 

In going no further than to set the years 80 and 110 a.d. as Did Acts 
the extreme limits for the date of composition, no use is made josephus? 
of the possibility, which is, nevertheless, well worth taking into 

^ Cf. Zahn, "Das dritte Buch des Lukas" {Xeue kirchl. Zeitsch., 1917, 
pp. 373-395). 

2 Cf. J. Weiss, t'6er die Absicht und denlilerarinchenCharakter der Apostelfj., 
1897, pp. 52-54 ; van Manen, Panlus, i. pp. 9, 13 ; v. d. Bergh v. Eysinga, 
Nieuw Theol. Tijdschr. 1919, p. 366 f. ; Ed. Schwartz, Xacliricht. d. Gotiingen 
Geselhch. d. Wis.<>., phil.-histor. KI., 1907, p. 298 f. 

3 Cf. Bousset, Theol. Rundschau, 1908, p. 202; J.Weiss, Das Urchristentum, 
i. p. 106 f. 

* Th. Zahn likewise combats the too early dating. Cf. Einl. in d. N.T. i. 
pp. 439-441 ; Das Evangelium d. Lukas, pp. 32-37. He was the first to call 
attention to the addendum to Acts.xiii. 1, ofiEered by Cod. Sangall. 133 : Lucius 
Cyrensis qui manet usque adhuc. The text is probably not genuine. If it 
were genuine, it would in fact bo positive evidence of the later composition 
of Acts. 


consideration, that the author of the Lucan history made use 
of the writings of Josephus. There are beyond all doubt several 
passages in the writings of Josephus which are much clarified 
by passages in Luke's writings, in respect both to subject-matter 
and to expression. From this point of view the diligent book 
by M. Krenkel, Josephus und Lucas, 1894, is of permanent 
value. It is more difficult to decide definitely the question 
whether or not Luke had access to Josephus' writings. One is 
most tempted to give an assenting answer in the case of the 
speech of Gamaliel. This speech is surely a composition of the 
author, and the peculiar arrangement Theudas- Judas (v. 36 f.) 
is best explained as a rather inaccurate reminiscence of Josephus, 
Antiq. xx. 5. 1 f. Further confirmation is to be had in certain 
coincidences in expression, and in the fact that in the context in 
Josephus the same famine is mentioned which is also reported 
in Acts xi. 27-30. 

If literary contact is assumed here, there will be many other 
parallel passages in the two authors about which we shall have 
to hold that the influence has been in the same direction, and 
the inevitable result of such a decision will be a new terminus 
a quo for the genesis of Luke's writings, namely the year 93 a.d. 
We should have won thereby a sure date on which to base our 
opposition to the traditional point of view. But since I cannot 
persuade myself that Luke's dependence on Josephus is a proved 
fact, I prefer to make no use of this hypothesis, in spite of the 
fact that it would materially simplify the work of criticism and 
make surer the results.^ 

^ Compare in reference to the problem, H. Wendt, Die Apostelgeschichte, 
pp. 42-45 ; P. W. Schmiedel, " Acts of the Apostles," in Encycl. Biblica, i. p. 37 ff. ; 
Hausrath, Jesus und die neut. Schrijts teller, ii. pp. 167 ff. ; van Manen, Paulus, i. 
pp. 133-139 ; MofEatt, Introduction, 2nd ed. pp. 29-31 ; K. Lake, Diet, of the Apost. 
Age, i. 20 f. ; v. d. Bergh v. Eysinga, Xieuw Theol. Tijdschr., 1917, pp. 141 ff. My 
reserve finds its justification in the circumstance that in the above-mentioned 
important parallels, as in the case of many others, there are noteworthy 
difEerences besides the points of similarity, which after all permit the possibility 
that Luke is independent of Josephus. Cf. Zahn, Einl. ii. pp. 400-403, 423-425, 
Die Apg. d- Lucas, i. p. 214 S. Stahlin confesses to similar doubts in Christ's 
GeschicJite der griech. Lit. 6th ed., 1913, ii. 2. pp. 967-71. 


I find it equally impossible to agree to Ed. Norden's ^ Alleged 
hj^othesis, that the author, or final editor of Acts, borrowed an Apoiioni 
idea for the speech on Mars Hill out of the lost book of Apollonius, 
irepl OvavSiv. If this theory were accepted, the date of composi- 
tion cannot be put earlier than the end of the first century, but 
Harnack's investigations have sho\vn clearly that the effort to 
prove that a note in Philostratus's Vita Apollonii (vi. 3) had its 
source in the above-mentioned writing of Apollonius, is a, failure.^ 
I have no greater inclination to adopt the variant hypothesis 
of P. Corssen,^ that the piece was taken from Damis's novel 
Philostratus, and that this novel is the model for Acts. I think 
it extremely probable that the author of Acts had literary 
models for the speech on Mars Hill, but I prefer, in this con- 
nection, not to give assent to any special hypothesis which 
creates a prejudice for or against a particular date of com- 

All these propositions leave an open question the possibiUty 
that the tradition (concerning Luke as author of Acts) is correct, 
but do not bar the way to critical enquiry. 

If we attempt a critical solution of the much-debated problem. The 
we cannot assume that the result we favour is the most natural ^^ ^^^ ^^^^ 
and the only conceivable one. The traditional opinion has the traditional 

•^ ^ opmion. 

right to be taken seriously and demands that we weigh con- 
scientiously the reasons for and against it.* And to the following 
extent the assumptions just made favour the retention of the 
traditional view. 

^ Agnosias Theos, 1913. Cf. in reference to this, R. Reitzenstein in Ilberg's 
Neue Jahrbucher, 1913, i. pp. 146-155, 393-422 ; W. Jager in the OoUiiiger Gel. 
Anz., 1913, p. 569 £E. ; Burkitt, J. Th. S. xv., 1914, pp. 455-464. 

^ "1st die Rede des Paulus in Athen ein urspriingl. Bestandteil der Apg. ? " 
{Texte und Untersuch. xxxix. 1, pp. 1-46). In reference to tliis R. Reitzenstein, 
op. cit. pp. 393-422 ; W. Jager, op. cit. pp. 601-610. Cf. aLo Th. Birt, Rhein. 
Museum fur Phil., 1914, pp. 342-392. 

^ "Der Altar des unbekannten Gottes," Ztsch. f. neut. Wiss., 1913, pp. 
-^09-323. Cf. Hempel, Apollonius v. Tyana, 1920, p. 3 ff., 81 f. 

* Cf. Harnack, Lukas der Arzt, pp. 9-18; K. Lake, I.e. 17. 


(1) Argu- (1) If the ' we ' is genuine, and if Acts and the Third Gospel 
'we' form a unit, what is more natural than that we should explain 
sections. ^j^^ ' I ' of the ' we ' narrative, which surely refers to a com- 
panion of Paul, as the autor ad Theophilum, thus confirming a 
tradition which goes at least as far back as the second century ? ^ 
Is it to be assumed that the books dedicated to Theophilus 
circulated at one time anonymously or under some other name 1 
And more particularly, who are we to suppose had falsely 
attached Luke's name to the Third Gospel ? If some unknown 
person had actually taken up the ' we ' narrative and worked 
it over, the retention of the ' we ' would be either incom- 
prehensible negligence or a rather dangerous attempt to claim 
the credit himself as an eye-witness and so deceive the reader. 
When a ' we ' without further explanation appears and 
vanishes again in a document dedicated personally to Theo- 
philus, the natural interpretation is that the author is modestly 
pointing out the experiences and deeds of Paul in which he 
personally had a share. 

(2) Non-use (2) If Paul's letters were not used (cf. p. 308) this fact speaks 
Epistles. for Luke. A later comer, who, since he was not an eye-witness, 

would certainly have sought dihgently for sources of information, 
and who would have made especial use of his sources when he 
was, as the critical scholars assume, freely composing his reports 
and speeches, would probably have discovered the Epistles and 
would have made every effort to profit by them to the greatest 
possible extent. Luke was not looking for written sources, 
because he felt he had all the material he needed in his own 
recollections and the verbal accounts of other eye-witnesses. 

(3) Luke (3) It seems more advisable to put the date of composition 
aiite at^ ^^ *^® ' Lucau histories ' in the first century, and if the year 
A.D. 80. 80 can still be reasonably set as a terminus a quo, we can further 

assume with great probabiHty that Luke was still alive at this 

^ Irenaeup, Adv. Haer. iii. 14 ; 15, 1, ed. Harvey ; Canon Muratori, 1. 34 ff. 
Concerning Marcion ef. Zahn, Einl. in das N.T. 3rd ed. ii. p. 178 f. and Das 
Evang. des Lidas, 1913, p. 1 ff. About earlier traces see Moffatt, Introduction, 
pp. 313 f. 


time.^ If the works were \\Titten during his lifetime, then 
Luke himself must be the author. 

(4) It appears further that everything we know about the (4) Person- 
personality of Luke confirms the tradition. Luke 

(a) Luke was a personal pupil of Paul. Paul, however, [j^^'^qj, 
mentions him only in his later letters (Col. iv. 14 ; Philemon 24 ; 
2 Tim. iv. 11). As a matter of fact the author of Acts is 
especially interested in Paul and has the most accurate informa- 
tion about him. The main idea of Acts, the right of a missionary 
activity among the Gentiles unhampered by law, is an achieve- 
ment for which the Church has chiefly Paul to thank. This 
idea is illustrated almost exclusively by examples taken from 
Paul's activity. According to the testimony of the ' we ' 
narrative, Luke accompanied Paul on his first European journey 
from Troas to Philippi and again on the journey, undertaken to 
collect money, from Philippi to Jerusalem, and finally on the 
journey from Jerusalem to Rome. The fact that Paul does not 
mention Luke until the letters written during his captivity, is in 
excellent agreement with this. When he was writing the earlier 
epistles Luke was not present. 

(6) Luke was a physician (Col. iv. 14). It is said that a 
careful examination of the Lucan history, including the Third 
Gospel as well, has made clear that the author was familiar 
with medical terminology, was interested in medical phenomena, 
and had perhaps even read medical works.^ Luke is the only 
physician whom we meet in the primitive Christian community. ^ 
We cannot demand unconditionally that the medical calling of 
an author should apj)ear in an evangelic and apostolic history. 

^ An old tradition has it that Luke died at the age of 84. Cf. Zahn, Et. 
des Lukas, pp. 13 fE., 740 ff. 

2 Cf. Hobartj The Medical Language of St. Luke, 1882 ; Campbell, Critical 
Studies in St. Luke's Oospel, etc., 1891 ; Th. Zahn, Einl. in das N.T. 3rd ed. 
ii. 433 f., 442 f. ; Harnack, Lukas der Arzt, jjp. 9 ff., 122 £E. ; Moffatt, I ntruduction 
to the Lit. of the N.T. 2nd ed. p. 298 f. 

* Not until the second century do Christians with a medical training meet 
us again. Cf. Harnack, "Medicinisches aus der iiltesten Kirchengeschichte " 
{Texte und Untersuchungen, viii. 4, p. 40 2.). 


If, however, we do find traces of such a professional education, 
we appear to have an unexpectedly brilliant confirmation of the 
tradition. It is further worth calling attention to the fact that 
the author of the prologue to the Gospel (Luke i. 1-4) and the 
author of Acts each has at his disposal no small skill in expression 
and general literary training. People of ' culture ' were rare in 
the first century in the Christian commimity (cf. 1 Cor. i. 26 fi.). 
We should gladly seize upon the tradition which gives us the 
name of a physician. 

(c) Luke was, according to Eusebius, a native of Antioch 
{Hist. eccl. iii. 4. 6).^ Even though we deny the authenticity 
of the first ' we ' passage of the ' Western ' text (xi. 28) which 
leads us to Antioch (see above, p. 304), there are still sufficient 
indications that the author of Acts stood in especially close 
relations with Antioch (cf. vi. 5, xi. 19 ff., xiii. 1 &., xv. 2, 
23, 35, xviii. 23). This would be most easUy explained if we 
could beheve a native of Antioch to be the author. 

(d) Luke was personally acquainted with Mark (Col. iv. 10, 14 ; 
Philemon 24 ; 2 Tim. iv. 11). In excellent agreement with this is 
the fact that the author makes use of the Gospel of this Mark and 
that the author of Acts is also weU informed about him (xii. 25, 
xiii. 13, XV. 37 f.) and narrates an event which happened in the 
house of Mark's mother, in the course of which he even mentions 
the name of the maid-servant (xii. 12 ff.). 

AU these comparisons and considerations are strong argu- 
ments in favour of the correctness of the tradition. If we are 
to put them aside, we must have counter-arguments of excep- 
tional weight. 

to the 

The critical examination to which the Tubingen School had 
subjected the Acts of the Apostles had been carried on with 
more than usually close and accurate reasoning. But since, on 
the one hand, the \dew on which they based their whole argu- 
ment has become imtenable, and on the other hand, all the 

1 Cf. Zahu, Das Evang. den LuJcas, pp. 10 ff. 738 ff. 


circumstances and reasons which speak in favour of the tradition 
have been studied until they seem stronger than ever, it 
seems scientifically impossible to cast serious doubt upon the 

Let us see, however, whether or not this prospect is deceptive. 
The chief argument of the Tiibingen School was as follows : 
The Lucan Paul is not consistent with the Paul of the authentic 
epistles. Nor is the Lucan Peter consistent with the Peter of 
the Epistle to the Galatians. In other words, they deemed it 
impossible that Luke would be responsible for such an un- 
historical attribution to Paul of Judaistic leanings and for such 
a similar remodelHng of Peter's character to resemble more 
closely Paul's as we find in Acts. 

When we proceed to test the correctness of this thesis, we 
must first of all fix definitely the method we are to employ in 
respect to two points which were not as yet clearly perceived 
and taken into account by the Tiibingen School. 

(1) When they noticed differences between the presentation (D Acts 

c • ,•» iT-415 imi- ^fid Pauline 

01 various events m Acts and Paul s own account, the Tiibmgen letters 
School declared immediately and without further consideration °°"^*''*- 
that the ' Lucan ' account was false. The}' did so with some 
plausibility, for the genuine epistles of Paul are in comparison 
with Acts historical documents of the first rank. To-day, 
more correct emphasis is laid on the consideration that Paul 
himself in these very letters, especially in the Epistle to the 
Galatians, is a party-man, engaged in combat ; and, as a partisan, 
naturally one-sided.^ There is therefore a possibility that the 
account may be correct as it appears in Acts, even if it conflicts 
with Paul's, or even if he is silent on the subject. 

(2) Whether Acts is historical and whether it is to be attri- (2) Question 
buted to Luke are two different questions (cf. p. 306). Even when probability. 
a report about Paul or Peter appears unhistorical, it does not 

follow that Luke would have been able to recognise it as such, 
and would therefore have been incapable of accepting it as true. 

^ Watkins, Der Kanipf des Paulus urn Oalatien, 1911. 


answered : 

(1) Regard- 
ing Paul's 

(2) Paul's 
first visit to 

The question can rather be put in this form : Does the account 
diverge from the actual historical events so markedly that only 
a writer who had not known Paul personally could have 
accepted it as true, or could have invented it ? 

In view of these and of other considerations, some of the 
conflicting points in the various documents, upon which the 
Tubingen School founded their arguments, can be eliminated. 

(1) Paul emphasises in Galatians the fact that no human 
intervention had had a share in his conversion, whereas 
Acts relates that a man by the name of Ananias had received 
the temporarily blinded Saul, and had been enabled by a vision 
to explain his recent experience and to |)redict his future work 
(ix. 10 &., xxii. 12 if.). Many scholars of the Tubingen School 
declared Ananias to be a pure invention. ^ But he could have 
hardly been erroneously introduced in this connection ; and, 
even if the presentation of him is legendary, or has been given 
a conventional literary form by the narrator, we may admit that, 
while Acts may have attributed too much importance to him 
in the conversion of Paul, Paul, on the other hand, was probably 
wrong in entirely disavowing him. In the ardour of his self- 
defence and to maintain so fundamentally important a point as 
his independence he may have forgotten, or underestimated, 
the possibly limited influence and assistance of another, though 
without it his conversion and call to be the apostle to the 
Gentiles might never have taken place. There is no reason, 
therefore, why the account in Acts may not be attributed 
to Luke. 

(2) There is a considerable discrepancy between the accounts 
of Paul's first visit to Jerusalem after his conversion as they 
appear in Acts and in the Epistle to the Galatians. The very 
date is suspicious : ' some days ' after the conversion (Acts ix. 
23) in contrast to the three years of Galatians i. 18. Acts goes 
on to say that when, after some initial difiiculties, Paul was finally 
brought to the ' Apostles ' by Barnabas, he began to preach 

1 Cf. Overbeck in De Wctte, Erlicir. der Apg. 4tli ed. (1870), p. 136. 


publicly to the Jews aud even to dispute with the Greek-speaking 
Jews (ix. 26 ff.). Paul, on the contrary, assures us solemnly that 
he tarried incognito only fifteen days in Jerusalem, that he talked 
only mth Cephas and James, and so remained unknown by 
face to the Christian congregations of Judaea (Gal, i. 18 &.)} 
In some points (the matter of Barnabas and the attendant 
circumstances) Acts may be a correct supplement to the Epistle 
to the Galatians : about the others the author is evidently poorly 
or wrongly informed. It is probable that the circumstances of 
a later visit to Jerusalem are incorrectly assigned to the first. 
It is strange that ' Luke ' was ignorant of these matters ; never- 
theless, it is not impossible that he might have given an incorrect 
version of the matter. 

(3) In the accounts in Acts Paul is obviously described as (3) Paul's 
following the principle of first searching out the Jews in a the Jews, 
strange city, and of transferring his efforts to the Gentiles 
only when the Jews rejected his word or gave other evidences 
of hostility (xiii. 46, xviii. 6, xxviii. 25-28). We should be 
inclined to conclude from this that Paul (Gal. i. 16, ii. 7 ff. to the 
contrary notwithstanding) regarded himself first of all as a 
missionary to the Jews, and that only when his efforts among 
them had failed did he feel forced to turn to the Gentiles. 
While the Tubingen School declared that this was invented for 
a particular purpose and therefore not to be attributed to 
Luke,"^ one is now compelled rather to acknowledge that Paul 
could have hardly foimd a wiser method of conducting his 
campaign than to seek out the synagogue first, in order to be 
sure of an audience and to gain proselytes from among the 
Gentiles. That Luke makes this Paul's invariable custom, and 
regularly makes him follow up failure with the Jews by 
turning to the Gentiles, is probably unhistorical. It seems, 
indeed, strange that a converted Gentile, like Luke, should have 

1 Cf. Overbeck in De Wette, p. 145 ff. 

- Cf., for example, Overbeck in De Wette, op. cit. p. 207 ff. H. J. Holtz- 
naann, " Die Apostelgeschiohte " {Ilandkomm. i. 2), p. 14 f. 


(4) Circnm- 
cisioii of 
and Titus. 

made Paul's desire to convert the Gentiles depend on repeated 
failures to convert the Jews ; but it may be explained as the 
counter-effect of a definite theological idea : the author wished 
to defend Paul's behaviour toward the Jews and the Old 
Testament, and to show that Paul separated from the Jewish 
Church only under the pressure of necessity. 

(4) There is a much debated point in connection with the 
question of circumcision. According to Acts xvi. 1-3; Paul 
out of consideration for the Jews circumcised Timothy, whose 
mother was a Jewess. According to Gal, ii. 3 he had a short 
time before, at the Council of Jerusalem, successfully opposed 
the demand that the Gentile Titus, who likewise was his travelling 
companion, should be circumcised.^ If the report about Timothy 
is held to be false, then the question of the authorship of Acts 
is decided. Luke could not fail to know whether his travelling 
companion Timothy had been circumcised or not. In fact the 
substance of the report and the reason given for it are curious. 
According to 2 Tim, i, 5, Timothy had a pious Jewish mother 
and grandmother. It is hard to beheve that Paul would have 
undertaken and accomplished what these two women did not 
feel necessary, and that out of consideration for the Jews ! And 
yet it is not safe to reject the report summarily. It may have 
been unskilfully written, or there may have been circumstances 
in the case which made the circumcision seem to Paul really 

(5) The most palpable error seems even now to be the 
with James allegation that Paul on his last visit to Jerusalem was willing 
Elders^ to cutcr iuto the bargain, which James and the elders proposed, 

and, in order to give a spectacular example of his fidelity to the 
Law, consented to join the four men who wished to fulfil their 
vow with due legal ceremony. Such behaidour, it may be 

^ This seems the most natural meaning of Gal. ii. 3, or, if the text and 
exegesis be adopted which imply that Titus was circumcised — but not under 
compulsion — it at least suggests that Paul would not immediately afterwards 
have considered circumcision as the proper treatment of a semi - Jewish 
convert like Timothy. 

(5) Paul's 


thought, would be hypocrisy in a man who outside of Jerusalem 
strongly opposed the compulsory observance of the Law, and 
preached everywhere that it had been done away in Christ. 
Again, the report of Acts seems incredible, and hardly conceiv- 
able as coming from ' Luke.' But the following considerations 
forbid its summary rejection. (1) It is not impossible that Paul, 
following the principle enunciated in 1 Cor. ix. 20 (cf. also x. 23, 
viii. 1 a. ; Rom. xiv.), made a point of observing the ceremonial 
Law when he lived among the Jews and, especially, when he 
was at a festival in Jerusalem.^ (2) Paul may have felt that 
circumstances, of which we are unaware, justified his concession 
to Jewish legal scruples on this occasion. (3) Luke may even 
have related the incident with the special purpose of showing 
how grievously the Jews had sinned against one so scrupulous to 
obey the Law as Paul. 

So much can be conceded ; though it is impossible to feci 
perfectly at ease as to the last three points. The very fre- 
quency of the reports, which seem strange if they be held to be 
from Luke's pen, militates against a ready acceptance of the 
efforts to explain away the inconsistencies psychologically. But 
if to those already considered other important pieces of evidence 
can be added, which cannot be brought into consonance with 
what is known about the facts of Luke's existence, then the 
final results of the criticism of the old Tubingen School must 
be accepted, even though the arguments on which they were 
based are faulty from the standpoint of modern exegesis and 

For the critical investigator the decisive point must alwa3's The 
be the ' Lucan ' presentation of the Council of Jerusalem. ^ Jerusalem. 

We must first block the clever and convenient exit which is 

^ Cf. 0. Pfleiderer, Das Urchrislentnm, 2ncl ed. i. p. .'523; J. Wellliausen, 
Abh. d. Gott. Ges. d. Wiss. N.F. xv. 2, p. 45. 

^ Cf. resumu and literature in H. lioltzraann, " Die Apostclgescliichto," lland- 
l-omm. i. 2, pp. 100-103; K. Schmidt, Art. " Apostelconvcnt " in Hauck's 
RmlencyU. J. protest. Theol. v. Kirche, i. pp. 703-711 ; P. W. Schmiedcl, Art. 
"Council of Jerusalem" in Encycl. Bibl. i. col. 916 11.; W. Briickner, Prot. 
Monatshefte, 1911, ]>. 278 iT. ; J. Weiss, Urchrislenium, p. 192 iT. 



offered by the refusal to admit the comparison of Gal. ii. with 
Acts XV. on the ground that Paul's story refers to the second visit 
to Jerusalem which Luke mentions in xi. 30, xii. 25.^ But there 
is a real difficulty here. If the negotiations to which Paul refers 
did not take place till the third visit, why is he silent about 
the second ? However, this question stands by itself. Either 
Paul passed over this journey in silence, because it was unim- 
portant,^ or the journey never took place at all. Barnabas went 
without Paul, and Luke erred, or — what is more probable — the 
one journey has been doubled by an erroneous interpolation of 
chapters xiii. and xiv., so that Gal. ii. = Acts xv. = Acts xi. 30.^ 
However that may be, Acts xi. 30 cannot be legitimately identified 
with Paul's report of what was done at Jerusalem to the exclu- 
sion of Acts XV. In the first place, it creates unnecessary 
difficulties. Why, for example, does Luke say nothing about 
those agreements which were so decisive for the question of 
the mission to the Gentiles ? And if Gal. ii. = Acts xi. how 
came it that fresh negotiations had to be entered upon at the 
formal meeting of Acts xv. ? Again, the reports (Gal. ii. ; Acts 
XV.) show so much similarity in their main points — cause, 
subject of contention, parties to the negotiation, principles of 
the leaders — that they must be two different accounts of the 
same event. Thus, though it is possible that Acts xi. 30 really 
refers to the same visit as Acts xv., we must rely on Acts xv. 
as the Lucan account of the events described in Gal. ii. 
Conflicting Turning to the comparison of Acts xv. and Gal. ii., certain 
in Acts and of the Smaller differences can be easily eliminated. When 


^ Ramsay, Si. Paul the Traveller, p. 55 S. ; C. H. Turner, Art. " Chronology " 
in Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible, i. p. 415 ff. ; Douglass Round, The Date of 
St. PauVs Epistle to the Galatians, 1906 ; K. Lake, The Earlier Epistles of St. 
Paul, p. 279 ff. ; C. W. Emmet, St. Paul's Epistle to the Galatians, 1912, p. xvi. ff. 

2 Thus, for example, Watkins, Der Kampf des Paulus um Galatien, p. 73, 

103 ff. 

3 Thus Ed. Schwartz and J. Wellhausen, Nachr. d. Gott. Ges. d. Wiss., phil.- 

hist. Kl., 1907, p. 269 ff. and p. 7 f. Acts xiii. f. is an independent account which 
the author interpolated on his own responsibility. The Apostolic Decree 
mentions only congregations in Syria and Cilicia. Cf. also A. Mentz in the 
Zeitschr. f. neut. Wiss. xviii. p. 177 ff. 


Paul, according to Gal. ii. 2, went from Antioch to Jerusalem 
because of a ' revelation,' but according to Acts xv. 2 as an 
ambassador of the Church of Antioch ; when in Acts xv. 6 a 
public transaction is described while in Gal. ii. 2 the private 
nature of the negotiations is emphasised, the one version can 
be taken as supplementary to the other. But there are three 
conflicting statements in the account in Acts xv. which remain, 
and no skill can explain these away. 

(1) The speech of Peter, xv. 7-11. In this passage Peter (i) Pete's 
speaks of himself as the first to be called to be a missionary to to the 
the Gentiles. This title is contrary to the facts as told by Paul ^^"*^^«- 
in the Epistle to the Galatians (ii. 6), when he says expressly 

that Peter, James, and John had no influence on his policy 
{irpoaaveOevTo), but, on the contrary, they were convinced by 
him that the Gentiles ought to be evangelised. Could a man 
who had known Paul have allowed Peter to claim that God 
had long before made him the apostle of the Gentiles ? ^ And 
further, no one even partially conversant with the facts could 
have made Peter condemn the Law as an intolerable yoke, and 
use the sort of language that we find later in the furiously 
anti- legalistic polemic of the Epistle of Barnabas (cf. Barn. 
iv. 6, etc.). 

(2) The speech of James in Acts xv. 14-21 makes use of (2) Speech 
Amos ix. 11, 12 in such a way as to prove that it must have ° *™^* 
been composed by the author of Acts. James says that God 

" will raise up the fallen tabernacle of David that the rest of 
men may seek the Lord," whereas in the Hebrew the last clause 
is " that they possess the remnant of Edom," which would be 
quite fruitless in this context. The quotation from Amos is a free 
rendering of the LXX. It is improbable that any one who knew 
from Paul's account what position James took (cf. Gal. ii. 11 f.), 

^ Acts XV. 7, Peter is made to allude to the conversion of Cornelius, whicli 
can hardly be regarded as other than a legend. In Galatians, Peter was clearly, 
up to the time of his meeting with Paul, confining his work to Jews, and he and 
his companions, James and John, were convinced by what they had seen and 
heard that Paul was justified in going to the Gentiles. 


could have fabricated for him such an interpretation of 
(3) The (3) In dealing with the Apostolic Decree, xv. 20, 28 f., 

decree. xxj. 25,^ it is first necessary to establish the original text. 
Harnack rightly saw that the text (the rituaUstic form : ab- 
stinence from the flesh of sacrifices, from blood, from the flesh 
of strangled creatures and from corruption in the broader Jewish 
sense of the word) is inconsistent with the assumption that Luke 
is the author. He has therefore been lately pleading the cause 
of the ' Western ' text as a moral catechism, prohibiting idolatry, 
murder, and fornication, and adding the Golden Rule.- Th. Zahn 
also thinks he can maintain the genuineness of Acts and still retain 
the text.^ Yet I am persuaded by the following reasons that the 
common text alone can be the original. (1) The Golden Rule is 
certainly an interpolation. (2) Uviktov is probably original, 
since its elimination is more comprehensible than its addition.^ 
Then airkyecQaL has reference naturally to food and not to 
murder, an exegesis which would present linguistic difficulties.^ 

(3) The whole situation demands that certain legal requirements, 
representing the minimum amount of conformity to the Mosaic 
Law.shouldbe prescribed absolutely for Gentile converts (cf . xv. 28). 
It is purposed to do away with the most objectionable of the 
unclean practices of the Gentiles, so that a mutual intercourse 
between Jewish and Gentile Christians may be possible, without 
the ever-recurring feeling of pollution on the part of the Jews. 

(4) If the Apostolic Decree were intended to be put forth as 
a sort of moral catechism, it would be noticeably incomplete. 
What mention is made of theft, avarice, litigiousness, lying, 
— prominent vices among the Gentiles — which are combated 

1 Cf. Baur, Paulus, p. 131 ff. ; Ed. Zeller, Die Apostelg. p. 241 ff. ; Overbeck 
in De Wette, p. 229 fit. ; P. W. Schmidt, Die Apostelg. bei De Wette-Overbeck und 
bei A. Harnack, pp. 20-27. 

2 Die Apostelgeschichie, p. 188 £E. A detailed defence of the ' Western ' text 
in G. Resch, Das Aposteldfcret (Texts und Untersuch. 28. 3, 1905). 

^ Eiid. in das Neve Testament, n. pp. 358 f., 438 f. 

* Cf. Schiirer, Theol. lit. Ztg., 1908, col. 175; Bousset, Tlieol. BundscJiau, 
1908, p. 193 f. » Cf. F. Blass, Theol. Stud. v. Krif., 1900. p. 18. 


everywhere else (of. 1 Thess. iv. 6 ; Gal, v. 20 ; 1 Cor. v. 11 : 
2 Cor. xii. 20 ; Eph. iv. 28 and j^assim) ? 

The reading which makes the Decree a food law must, there- a food law. 
fore, be held to be the genuine one.^ The following conclusions 
are to be drawn from this : 

(1) Paul declares (Gal. ii. 6 ff.) in no ambiguous terms that fi) if so 
no obligations touching the Law were imposed upon him for his Paui nor " 
work of converting the Gentiles (cf. ii. 6). If the ' Lucan ' report '"^ 

o \ / r opponents. 

were correct, he would necessarily have mentioned the Decree, ^ 
which contains precepts taken from the Law (cf. Lev. xvii. 11, ' the 
life of the flesh is in the blood '), and has as its purpose to make 
possible the reception of Gentiles into Christian congregations 
which up till then had consisted of Jews. But the main subject 
of discussion of the Epistle to the Galatians is whether for any 
reason whatsoever Gentiles should be compelled to accept the 
obligations of the Law. Even if the originators of the Decree 
did not consider the fulfilment of the four commands as directly 
necessary for salvation, nevertheless the stricter Judaists would 
assuredly have tried to insist that it was so ; and Paul, 
foreseeing this, could therefore not have failed to discuss the 
Decree and its correct interpretation. And even if the Decree, 
corresponding to the address of the letter, was adopted at first 
only for Antioch, Syria, and Cilicia, nevertheless it is the natural 
assumption — at any rate it is the assumption of ' Luke ' — 
that it should also apply to all future Christian congregations ; 
in fact, ' Luke ' himself states (Acts xvi. 4) that Paul published 
the Decree in the South Galatian communities. In this case, 
Paul must have bound those whom he had already converted 
to observe the Decree ; or, if the North Galatian theory be 

1 Cf . H. Oort, " Het besluit der Apostelsynodc "{Theol. Tijdschr. 40, p. 97 ff .) ; 
Sanday, Expos, viii. (i, pp. 289-305 ; K. Lake, The Earlier EpUtles of St. Patil, 
1911, pp. 48-60; H. H. Wendt, Die Apostelg. pp. 232-237; P. Wcndland, Die Lileraturformen, p. 320; H. Diehl, Ztschr. f. neut. Wiss., 1909, pp. 277- 
290 ; J. Wellhausen, " Kritische Analyse der Apostelg." {Abh. d. QoU. Oes. d. 
Wise. N.F. XV. 2, 1914, p. 28). 

* The validity of this conclusion has been itieorroctly denied, for example, 
Watkins, Der Kampf ilrft Pnnhis urn Oaliitini, ]i. 80. 


(2) Conflicts 
with the 
dispute of 

(3) Paul 
and " idol 

adopted, he may have done the same thing to people who had 
not yet heard the Gospel from him. Anyhow he could not 
have failed to mention the Decree, if for no other purpose than 
that its publication should be correctly interpreted, and not 
be used against him by his opponents. If he fails to mention 
it, it is because neither he, nor the Galatians, nor the Judaists 
knew anything about an Apostolic Decree. 

(2) The report of the conflict between Peter and Paul in 
Antioch (Gal. ii. 11 ff.) likewise discredits the ' Lucan ' account 
of the issue of an Apostolic Decree. It must be assumed that 
in point of time this conflict followed the Apostolic Conference 
described in Galatians. Paul narrates his story from Gal. i. 13 
and onwards in historical sequence ; and the point of the 
narrative would be lost if Paul had had his controversy with 
Peter before a discussion of principles had taken place. Had 
the Apostolic Decree been issued in advance^ then the conflict 
could hardly have arisen. The least the Gentiles could obtain 
by observing the Decree was the privilege of breaking bread 
with the Jews. If the conflict between Peter and Paul had arisen 
in spite of the Decree, Paul had no alternative but to produce 
it in support of his position, both at Antioch and in his subse- 
quent Epistle to the Galatians. It would have been a crushing 
retort to the Judaisers. In fact the conflict itself and the silence 
of Paul prove that the Decree did not exist at the time, and 
therefore also that it was not adopted at the Apostolic Council. 

(3) As is well known, Paul discusses one of the points men- 
tioned in the Decree, the position toward the elSwXodura in 
1 Cor. viii.-x. His involved, and not entirely consistent language 
proves that neither he nor the Corinthians knew about any 
custom confirmed by a decree. If ' Luke ' were correct, Paul 
would certainly have imposed the Decree from the very beginning 
upon his Corinthian congregation ; and no confusion could ever 
have arisen. If, however, for some incomprehensible reason, 
Paul had failed to communicate the Decree in the beginning, 
then it was high time to repair his negligence and so avoid 


further disunion. If therefore Paul is not to appear both 
neglectful of his duty and foolish, we have a proof of the ficti- 
tious character of the Lucan narrative in Acts xv. 

The unhistorical character of the Lucan narrative in chapter if Acts xv. 

1 1 •! -T 1- ^^ unhis- 

XV, havmg been thus clearly shown, the possibility must be con- toricai can 
sidered whether such an error can be attributed to the historical Luke?"*' 
Luke. This, too, is impossible. Luke must have known what 
was required of Gentile Christians in Antioch, Asia Minor, Mace- 
donia, and Greece. He must have known that the PauUne con- 
gregations at Derbe and Lystra as well as at Philippi and Corinth 
were not acquainted with the Decree. To a companion of Paul 
it must have been on the face of it too palpable an invention 
to include it in his narrative. Even if ' Luke ' was not at Paul's 
side during the Galatian conflict, he must have had opportunities 
for obtaining information about the matters under discussion, 
and Paul's attitude toward them. If the Decree was discussed 
on the occasion of Paul's last visit to Jerusalem, as appears by 
its being cited in Acts xxi. 25, Luke must certainly have learned 
when and under what circumstances it was issued, since he was 
with Paul at this time and later had ample opportunity of learning 
from Paul how the matter stood.^ 

We may call attention to another special point of view. 
According to xvi. 11 ff,, it is certain that the waiter of the ' we ' 
sections, let us say ' Luke,' was present at the founding of the 
congregation in Philippi, and perhaps even had a hand in winning 
over its first members. According to xx. 4 it is probable that he 
visited them again some years later, if only for a short time in 
passing ; and it is even possible that he was constantly in 
Philippi or in the neighbourhood during the period between 
Acts xvi. and Acts xx. May we not assume from Paul's warning 
against the ' concision ' (Phil. iii. 2), that the congregation at 
Philippi never received from Paul a decree so Jewish in tone 
as that in Acts xv. ? How could the ' Luke ' who knew the 
congregation at Philippi so well, have believed that the Paul, 

' A. Gercke, Hermes, 1894, p. 376. 


who founded the Philippian Church had accepted in Jerusalem 
a decree imposing so much legalism on Gentile Christians, and 
had delivered it to the congregations in Antioch and Asia Minor ? 
Is it possible that the PhiHppians could have been ignorant that 
the apostle had accepted a decree entirely incompatible with the 
teachings they had previously received from Paul ? 

How then can we account for the rise of the report in Acts xv ? 
The author of Acts may have had before him an account of 
negotiations in Jerusalem which were concluded by an agreement 
between Paul, Peter, and James, and also the text of a decree 
which was issued, some time later, by the authorities of Jerusalem 
without the participation of Paul (cf. xxi. 25). Since the author 
did not know precisely when the publication of the Decree 
took place, he combined it with the account of the conference 
between Paul, Peter, and James. Thus he portrays a state of 
affairs in accordance with which the Apostles to the Jews and 
the Apostle to the Gentiles meet to take common council and 
are so far agreed as to put the results of their conference into 
documentary form, which then in the guise of an official letter 
is communicated to the congregations. Only a later comer, 
ignorant of Paul's attitude towards the Law, who had no certain 
information regarding the publication of the Decree could have 
undertaken such a combination as we have before us in Acts xv. 
The preceding investigations have shown us that the author 
of Acts has given us unreliable accounts of important events, 
which he further elaborates as seems good to him. This leads to 
the question of his sources and especially to the problem of the 
' we ' source. 

This is a decisive criterion for the correct point of \4ew 
toward Acts. In accordance with the assumptions which we 
made and with the conclusions which we drew from them (p. 314: f.) 
our criticism seems to be undermined by the ' we ' sections, 
however many and however cogent the other reasons may be 
which it can advance. 
First in In answcr to these objections, those who reject the ' tradition ' 

Acts xvi. 


may submit the following considerations. It is a rather aston- 
ishing characteristic of the ' we ' sections that the ' we ' begins 
suddenly to appear in Acts xvi. and vanishes just as suddenly, 
and equally without any explanation by the author. According 
to xvi. 1 fE., Paul had only Silas with him, on his journey from 
Antioch to Lystra. In Lystra he found Timothy. If the first 
person plural which appears suddenly in xvi. 10, implies neither 
Silas nor Timothy, it is strange that the author gives us no infor- 
mation how he came into Paul's company. It is very hazardous 
to assume as an explanation that it was unnecessary to inform 
Theophilus ; nor is it certain that the book is intended for him 
alone. Even if this assumption were correct, it would be aston- 
ishing that the author should make no efiort to explain the 
presence of this ' we ' section in its new context. It is much 
easier to explain the facts as we have them, if we assume that 
the author of Acts on this occasion took over Luke's diary and 
copied a passage out of it ; and perhaps for literary reasons 
or, possibly, through mere carelessness, failed to mention the 
name of the travelling companion who appeared here for the 
first time. 

The ' we ' leads us only to the beginnings of the work in 
Philippi. After the healing of the prophetess ' Luke ' vanishes ; 
and, even when Paul and Silas are welcomed by the brethren 
after their imprisonment, he does not reappear. If Luke himself 
were the narrator, he would most certainly have told us, if o)ily 
briefly, what became of him. The truth is that the author 
used only a fragment of the diary, and after a fashion general in 
antiquity, omitted any mention of his change of sources. 

The same is true of the second and third ' we ' sections, Sooond and 
XX. 5-16, xxi. 1-18. Here also Theophilus could reasonably Acts xx. 
expect his friend Luke to tell him how he again came among ^'"^ ^^'" 
the companions of Paul, and what had happened to him in 
the meantime, possibly in Macedonia. Luke would certainly 
have indicated for the benefit of those who knew him, as well as 
for those who did not, why he vanishes again at the time of the 


in Acts 
xxvii. f. 


wisdom in 
Acts xvii. 

negotiations with James, if he did not wish to give the appearance 
of abandoning his teacher at the most difficult moment. But 
everything is clear, if we assume that we have to reckon with 
the literary peculiarities of a later comer who used a diary which 
lay before him ; and, as seemed best to him, worked it over or 
left it out of consideration, without giving any account of his 

Finally, at the beginning of the fourth and last ' we ' section 
(xxvii. 1-xxviii. 16),i Luke would most certainly have specified 
how it came about that he now suddenly appeared in Caesarea 
and had the privilege of accompanying Paul on the ship. It 
is much easier to understand how an adapter of Luke's diary 
did not feel an explanation to be necessary here. 

The matters narrated within the ' we ' sections are in general 
credible, especially when we take into consideration that the 
' Luke the physician,' as a Christian and as an admirer of Paul, 
was a believer in miracles, and so could have had miraculous 
experiences. Our judgment about the history of the ' we ' 
sections is confirmed by the observation that much of what is 
found in chapters xvi.-xxviii. outside the ' we ' sections cannot 
have been narrated by an eye-witness. The story of the imprison- 
ment of Paul and Silas at Philippi (xvi. 19 ff.) is not consistent, 
nor is it credible in some details, and must therefore have been 
adapted by the author or appended to the fragment of Luke's 
diary from some other source. The account of the journeys of 
Paul and Silas (xvii. 14 ff., xviii. 5) is incorrect, as appears from 
1 Thess. ii. 14, iii. 1 fE. ; and it is difficult to suppose that ' Luke ' 
here had been wrongly informed. 

Since the researches of Ed. Norden the speech at Athens 
has claimed especial interest. The speech must be considered 
a free composition even if the hypothesis is not adequately 
proved that the author of Acts worked on the model of a 
writing of Apollonius himself or of Damis. Some of the ideas 
are not Pauline, as for example the apology for heathen idol- 

^ Perhaps with interpolations by the author; cf. xxvii. 9-11, 21-26. 


worship, xvii. 30,^ and the pantheistic quotation in xvii. 28. 
The whole method of entering into competition with Greek 
wisdom is quite unlike Paul, who plainly declares that he 
refused to satisfy the demand of the Greeks at Corinth to preach 
' wisdom.' Indeed he afhrms that he had ' determined to 
know nothing ' but ' Christ crucified ' ; and, if we assume that 
he abandoned the attempt to adapt himself to Greek methods 
of teaching, because he had so singularly failed at Athens, we 
should have to admit that the apostle was guilty of equivoca- 
tion. Now it is not impossible that Luke had not read 
1 Corinthians, and therefore could attribute such a speech 
to Paul ; but he must have known that Paul determined to 
avoid teaching Greek ' wisdom.' It is surely more probable 
that the author of the speech had not known Paul. 

It is difficult to determine whether the account of Paul's Farewell 

14 5 T speech at 

farewell at Miletus belongs to the we source or not. In Miletus. 
spite of the Pauline somid of the speech (xx. 18 ff.) it seems 
improbable. The prophecy of future teachers of false doctrine 
{v. 29) is out of place, since as a matter of fact such wolves 
had long been disturbing the quiet of Paul's congregations, 
though ' Luke ' is consistently silent about this.^ The words 
of Jesus also in Acts xx. 35 are perplexing. Why was not so 
fine a saying inserted in the Gospel ? Surely it would have 
been, if ' Luke the physician ' were the auctor ad TheopJiilum. 
But it is conceivable that an author, who had never met Paul, 
might, after he had finished the Gospel, have come across this 
saying in a ' source ' whilst at work on Acts. 

In the parts of Acts dealing with Jerusalem there may have 
been other fragments of Luke's diary used than those marked 
by the occurrence of the ' we.' But we have to reckon again 
with embellishments and elaborations. Yet here, too, it can 
be shown that the adapter and completer cannot possibly have 
known Paul. 

^ See Rom. i. 18 ff. for the expression of the contrary view. 
" Cf. 0. Pfleiderer, Das Urchrislenluni, i. jj. 51!>. 

in his 


The coiiec- This appears first from the account of the motive for Paul's 

tion for the . t i » t n • /-< 

Church at last joumev to Jerusalem. Accordmg to 1 Cor, xvi. 1-4, 2 Cor. 
erusaem. -^ .^^ Rom. XV. 25-28, the chief reason and the chief desire 
of Paul was the delivery of the moneys collected. The histori- 
cal ' Luke ■ must often have heard from Paul himself how sig- 
nificant it was to him, and must have seen the delivery with 
fuU consciousness of its import. AYhen Acts mentions this 
chief factor only as an afterthought and incidentally (xxiv. 17), 
the hearsay character of the evidence is manifest. Though 
the witness knows what happened he is no longer able to 
appreciate it. 

i'aui's It is extremely important to discuss the account of Paul's 

conversion . . ." 

in his conversion in his speeches in his own defence. The author 

has made Paul tell the story on two separate occasions (xxii. 
3-21 and xxvi. 9-20. Cf. ix. 1-21). Even though a nucleus of 
historical truth were guaranteed by the utterances of Paul 
(1 Cor. ix. 1, XV. 8), the whole story is probably legendary. 
Now it is quite possible that a pupil of Paul should have embodied 
the story of his teacher's conversion in a legendary form ; the 
only question is, how it happened. Two things especially urge 
us to caution. In the first place, one of the decisive factors 
in Paul's conversion is an occurrence which Paul alone mentions, 
but which is, in his estimation, the most important : "I have 
seen the Lord " (1 Cor, is. 1, xv. 8), But this vision of the Lord 
is completely ignored in the description in Acts, and even its 
possibility is excluded, Paul saw only light, he only heard 
the Lord. And this corresponds to the style of such visions 
(cf. Mark ix. 2-7). ' Luke ' would have most certainly men- 
tioned the ' seeing of the Lord,' upon which Paul founded 
his apostleship.i In the second place. Acts gives a threefold 
version of the manner in which Paul was called to be an 
Apostle to the GentUes. According to ix. 15, the call came 
through Ananias ; according to xxii. 17-21, the Lord himself 
sent Paul to the Gentiles, in a special vision granted later 

1 Cf. Wellhausen, Ahh. d. Go'.t. Ges. d. Wiss. N.F. xv. 2, p. 17. 


in Jerusalem ; ^ and according to xxvi. 16-18, the summons was 
given by the Lord at the time of the vision in Damascus. The 
three accounts show that the author had no certain information 
or found difierent accoimts already existing, and rewrote them as 
he saw fit. Luke would undoubtedly have known what Paul 
was accustomed to tell about his call to be an Apostle to the 
Gentiles and can scarcely have written such varying accoimts. 

More decisive are the doubts caused by Paul's manner of PaDi's 
defence before the Council (xxiii. 1-9). Little hnportance need before^the 
be attached to the fact that Paul, according to the account ''^'^■ 
in Acts, first reviles the High Priest {v. 3) and then excuses 
himself by a statement which, moreover, it is hard to 
beheve true {v. 5), The essential consideration is that Paul 
announces himself before the Council to be a Pharisee, and 
with this confession immediately wins over to his side several 
members of that party. The whole picture can hardlv be 
considered historical ; for it implies hypocrisy on the part of 
Paul. The whole of the second epistle to the Corinthians 
contradicts Acts (cf. iii. 3-iv. 6; v. 17; xi. 22 fi.). If Paul 
could have behaved as Acts represents him here, and then write 
the sharp invective (Phil. iii. 2) against Pharisaism, he would 
have been a hypocrite. For he teUs the Philippians that 
though he had been a zealous Pharisee he had given up 
all his privileges of birth and race for the sake of Christ 
(Phil. iii. 2), and he denounces the Jewish religion. An 
efiort to harmonise these two passages is an insult to Paul ! 
That Paul, since his conversion, had broken with Pharisaism 
could never have been forgotten by a personal friend and 
pupil, nor could such a one have failed to record it. Only a 
later comer, who knew Paul only by tradition, and not as 
yet through his letters, could have represented Paul's theologv 
as that of a Pharisee believing in Jesus as the Messiah. A 
personal friend could not possibly have represented Paul as 
denying his convictions in order to save his life. 

^ The scene is probably invented by analogy with Ifaiah vi. 


Paul and Not dissimilar are the statements which the author attributes 

to Paul in his defence before Felix, but they do not leave 
quite so black a stain on his character. Paul is represented 
as defining his position thus (Acts xxiv. 14 if.) : " Believing all 
things which are according to the law, and which are written 
in the prophets, having hope towards God which these also 
themselves look for, that there shall be a Resurrection both of 
the just and unjust." Here the real point at issue is carefully 
suppressed ; for Paul had declared the Law a thing of the 
past (Gal. iii. 15-25 ; Rom. vii., x. 4), and according to his 
conviction, the whole belief in the Resurrection was based on 
the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, which the Jews denied (1 Cor. 
XV.). In this case, Luke, a converted Gentile, would have been 
quite clear about Paul's ideas of the Law and the Resurrection. 
The hand of the stranger betrays itself again when Paul is 
portrayed as a Jewish Christian, faithful to the Law and cling- 
ing to his Pharisaism. 
Paul and lu the dcscriptiou of Paul's negotiations with the Jews in 

at'^Rome. Romc, at which, according to the traditional view, Luke was 
himself present, one has a right to expect a thoroughly clear 
and unexceptional account. But the following points show that 
it was compiled by a writer who, though he had traditional 
material at his disposal, did not know much that was im- 
portant, or else did not give heed to it because he was seeking 
an effective conclusion which should make perfectly clear one 
of the main ideas of his book. 
1) Conflict (1) Paul, before he started for Jerusalem, hoping that he 
would be free to come from thence to Rome, had sent a most 
unportant letter to the Roman congregation. It was probably 
his intention to convey some knowledge of himself in advance, 
and irrespective of the division into Jewish and Gentile Chris- 
tians, and of the threatened danger from the Judaisers, to come 
to an understanding with the congregation about the chief 
points of his teaching, — its freedom from the constraint of the 
Law, its opposition to the Jewish religion but not to the Jewish 



people. It must have been of predominant interest to an 
actual companion of Paul to learn and to recount afterwards 
how Paul was received by the Christian congregation in Rome. 
The author of Acts has preserved only a brief note on the 
subject (xxviii. 15): the 'brethren' in Rome came to meet 
' us.' About the chief point of interest, about the real reception 
in Rome, the attitude of the Roman congregation toward Paul 
the preacher and theologian, he is silent. ' Luke ' would 
certainly have given us something analogous to the narrative 
in Acts xxi. 17 if. 

(2) Instead of relating Paul's reception by the Christians, (2) Answer 
' Luke ' gives us an account of the meeting with the Jews. *° t^e Je^g 

^ ° cannot be 

This is not strange in itself, for much might depend upon the composition 

of Paul's 

attitude of the Jews. But Paul's words (Acts xxviii. 17-20) companion. 
disappoint us. They are an excerpt of the preceding narrative, 
which itself has been written up by the author. The sus- 
picious statement already mentioned, that Paul was a prisoner 
because of the hope of Israel (xxvi. 6 f.) appears again 
(xxviii. 20). And the second half of the answer of the Jews 
is incredible (xxviii. 22). They profess that the Christian 
faith was known to them only by unfavourable reports, and 
therefore they welcomed the opportunity of obtaining informa- 
tion about it. This statement ignores the fact that a Christian 
congregation had long since been in existence in Rome, so that 
the Jews of that city had had ample opportunity to familiarise 
themselves with Christianity. ^ From Suetonius {Claudius, xxv.) 
we may conclude that discussions about the ' Christus ' had taken 
place, and had been the cause of the separation of the church 
from the synagogue. Luke has himself to admit, an undisputed 

1 There is an additional argument for the early presence of Christianity 
in Rome. Aquila and Priscilla (Acts xviii. 2) came to Corinth in consequence 
of Claudius' edict. Now it is nowhorc said that they were subsequently con- 
verted or baptized, so presumably they were Christians. This would confirm 
Suetonius' statement that the Jews had been expelled from Rome on account 
of a riot imjmlsore Chresto. If this is the case. Acts xxviii. 22 implicitly con- 
tradicts xviii. 2, probably because the author did not notice that hia sources 
were at variance. 


* we ' section, that there were brethren {i.e. Christians) who welcomed 
Paul on his way to Rome (Acts xxviii. 15). Paul, through his 
Epistle, had already provided the Roman Jews with an oppor- 
tunity of learning what he thought about the matter ; for his 
letter to the Romans is in parts (cf. ii. 1 &.), if only for rhetorical 
purposes, addressed to the Jews. It is probable that, when 
Paul actually arrived in Rome, he reaped the benefit of his 
letter both among the Christians and the Jews, and the Epistles 
must have formed at any rate the basis of any discussion between 
Paul and the Roman Jews. But the report of Paul's conversa- 
tion with the Jews is so conventional and betrays such ignorance 
of what he had written to the Romans and of the situation 
implied by the Epistle, that though we may concede that, from 
the author's point of view the conclusion of Acts is grandly 
conceived, we can never believe that it is the reminiscence of 
an eye-witness about the most important days in the history of 
the most successful and greatest Apostle of Jesus Christ. 
Why Thus the evidence has accumulated that the elaboration of 

authorsiiip the rcports of an eye-witness {sc. the author of the ' we ' 
sibie"^"^ sections) cannot possibly originate in the pupil of Paul, but 
must be ascribed to some post-apostolic author. We were 
justified in making rather greater demands on these parts of 
the narrative than on the others, since the eye-witness, whom 
tradition has caused to be currently accepted as the author, 
was a companion of Paul from Troas to Philippi, and again 
from Macedonia to Rome, and so had opportunity to inform 
himself from the best sources, viz., from Paul himself, about 
the events which he did not personally witness. The verdict ' un- 
historical ' is here nearly equivalent to the verdict ' not Lucan.' 
Fatal dis- The casc is not much different with the stories about Paul 

which are narrated in Acts before the commencement of the 
' we ' sections and the account of the Council of Jerusalem. 
Here again suspicious deviations from historical truth confirm 
our judgment. The conversion of Paul in chapter ix. has 
already been discussed. The presentation of the South Galatian 


mission (c. xiii. f.) is suspicious. The speech of Paul at Pisidian 
Antioch (Acts xiii. 15-41) is very un-Pauline, and obviously 
the product of the author, for the following reasons. (1) It 
borrows from the Gospel of Luke (compare xiii. 25 with Luke 
iii. 16, xiii. 28 with Luke xxiii, 13 ii.). (2) It implies that the 
Lord appeared after the Resurrection only to those who had 
gone up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem (cf. ii. 32), thereby 
excluding Paul and implying that, contrary to his own repeated 
assertions, he was only a second-hand witness that Jesus had 
risen.i (3) It is dependent on the Pentecostal speech of Peter for 
its proof of the resurrection (xiii. 34-37 ; compare ii. 25-32, 38). 
When the author later introduces a sentence recalling Paul's 
doctrine of justification (xiii. 38 f.), which is the only one of 
its kind in Acts, it is obviously an endeavour to put into his 
mouth a phrase with a genuinely Pauline ring about it. But 
even this seems to be a misunderstanding of Paul's teaching. 
Faith seems to be a supplement of strict observance of the Law. 
For these reasons the composition of the speech cannot be by 
a companion of Paul. 

According to Acts xv. 23, the apostolic letter was sent to the 
Syrian Antioch, and to the Churches of Syria and Cilicia. But 
according to Acts South Galatia had already been converted, 
and Galatians shows (on the South Galatian theory) that the 
Judaistic controversy raged there. Would all mention of Galatia 
have been omitted by the apostles in their letter ? Is it not 
more likely that the editor of Acts has combined his sources 
in a wrong chronological order ? But is such a mistake con- 
ceivable if the author of Acts was ' Luke ' the companion of 
Paul and possibly a native of Syrian Antioch ? 

In the chapters dealing with Paul, the adapter, who stands The author 
at a distance from the Apostolic age, betrays himself, as we adapter, 
have seen, by his treatment of his sources. He mingles reliable 
testimony of eye-witnesses with material obviously legendary, 
and with theological dissertations designed to present his own 

' Cf. tiie apocryplml 3 Cor. ,3. 


Selection of 

of facts 

point of view. The author of Acts was a professional writer, 
a collector, adapter, and supplementer of sources. Even the 
second part of his book, which is distinguished by more exact 
information and greater historical fidelity, reveals the points of 
view which determine his selection, and these and the unaccount- 
able lacunae in the narrative prove that it cannot be the work 
of an eye-witness. 

The author gives incidents taken from the missionary 
journeys of Paul and from the history of the congregations 
founded by him. But what incidents does he select ? What 
is he interested in ? He presents samples of Paul's missionary 
sermons and anecdotes which characterise the founding of a 
congregation, the cessation of Paul's activity, or his reasons 
for removing elsewhere. He presents the purely external 
characteristics of Paul's activity, his first, and, in general, his 
superficial successes. About the subsequent administrative 
and pastoral work, which, nevertheless, to judge by the very 
abundant testimony of the Epistles, produced much that was 
great and significant, we rarely learn anything really tangible 
(xix. 8-20, XX. 17-38). The author gives no examples illustra- 
tive of the fruitful points of view which Paul's Epistles abound 
in, of the manifold experiences and conflicts which the young 
Pauline congregations must have had after the period of their 
first enthusiasm. He is not interested in such things. But the 
hints which Paul himself gives us (2 Cor. xi. 23 ff.) show clearly 
how insufficient is the narrative of Acts. 

Two chief reasons may be advanced to explain the peculiarity 
that so little is reported in Acts of all Paul's many activities 
which the Epistles describe. Both provide arguments against 
the traditional view of the authorship of Acts. 

In the first place, we may explain the silence as ignorance 
on the part of tlie author. But Luke, who was with Paul 
before and after the composition of the Epistles to the Thes- 
salonians, Corinthians, Galatians, and Romans, must have 
known something about the circumstances which resulted in 


the writing of these letters. We can account for such ignorance 
as meets us in Acts only by assuming that the author was a 
later comer, who had to collect traditions about Paul from 
others, but was unacquainted with the Epistles or incapable 
of estimating their importance. 

Besides the author's ignorance, we have to take into con- 
sideration his intentional suppression or rejection of reports 
which gave an historically correct, but not altogether agreeable, 
picture of the Apostolic age. This is especially pertinent in 
regard to the conflicts which Paul had constantly to wage 
against Judaistic tendencies {e.g. with Peter and Barnabas in 
Antioch) or Judaistic agitations ; (cf. Gal. ; 1 Cor. i.-iv. ; 2 Cor. 
x.-xiii. ; Rom. xv. 30-32 ; Phil. iii. 2 ff.). To judge by what 
Acts tells us in chapter xv., and does not tell us in xvi.-xxviii., 
the controversy in Jerusalem before Paul's first great journey 
was concluded once for all by an excellent compromise. Paul 
has nothing more to say about disturbers of the peace and 
teachers of false doctrine until his prophecy about them at his 
leave-taking from the representatives of the congregation at 
Ephesus (xx. 29 f.). The author's conception of the struggles 
of the apostolic age is therefore a definite one, but thoroughly 
wrong. The compromise is no less fictitious than the end of 
the conflict. Paul's Epistles teach us that nothing occurred 
— least of all in Jerusalem — to assure permanent understanding 
and concord, that not even the simplest questions were settled 
between Peter, Barnabas, and Paul, that agitations emanating 
from Jerusalem threatened to discredit Paul's whole work and 
person in Asia Minor and Greece. The historical Paul had no 
need to prophesy the coming of false teachers. He had already 
had personal experience with their wolfish nature and had made 
war upon them with all the energy at his disposal. Luke, the 
converted Gentile, must have known the actual state of afiairs 
and appreciated its importance. Only a post-apostolic writer 
could have falsified history so unhappily with his inventions 
and suppressions, because he had not himself experienced the 


conflicts and did not understand their importance, or because 
he was not acquainted with the Epistles or did not know 
much about them, and, in order to idealise his story, refused 
to attribute much importance to them. 

Non- There remain the non - Pauline traditions in Acts i.-xii. 

traditions Obstaclcs which hinder the acceptance of the traditional view 
of the authorship are not here so easy to find. ' Luke,' who 
was himself a believer in miracles, had in these cases less reliable 
sources, and was more prone to accept legendary material. 
A companion of Paul might easily be guilty of the obviously 
improbable anachronism about Theudas in the speech of 
Gamaliel, nor is there any reason why he should not, if he 
wrote after a.d. 70, have incorporated into his narrative the 
mythical elaboration of the legend of the ascension (Acts i. 
2 fE.). We can only reject ' Luke's ' authorship in these cases 
if we come upon reports which are obviously in contradiction 
to what a pupil of Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles, must have 
known. But in the first part of Acts there are two narratives 
which cannot be reconciled with the traditional view, namely, 
the story of Pentecost and that of Cornelius. 

The A companion of Paul must have known what the gift of 

" tongues " 

at tongues meant ; for it must have frequently fallen within his 

experience, and speaking with tongues is referred to with 
apparent understanding of its real meaning in x. 46 and xix. 6 ; 
behind the account of the Pentecostal gift the real state of 
afiairs can be dimly perceived. But the occurrence described as 
the outpouring of the Spirit at Pentecost is a linguistic marvel 
presenting a miracle greater than any which the early Christian 
history records, not an outbreak of, as the text stands, ' speak- 
ing with tongues.' ^ 

What must we suppose to be the background of ideas out of 
which such a picture arose ? Probably ignorance of the true 

^ Cf. Mosiman, Das Zungenreden geschichtl. unci psychol. untersucht, 1911. 
P. W. Schmiedel, Pfingsterzdhlung u. Pfingstereignis (Prot. Monatsh. xxiv. 
p. 73 flf.). 



nature of the gift of tongues. Any one who was familiar with 
this must have considered it sufficiently wonderful ; and only 
one who had come in contact with it rarely, if at all, would think 
of making the gift a basis for the fabrication of a story of a more 
impressive miracle. 

Again, the legend shows a desire to glorify the original 
apostles beyond the measure of historical truth. The legend 
of the descent of the Spirit at Pentecost presupposes that in 
accordance with Acts i. 8, the disciples were from the first 
intended to go forth on a world-embracing mission. The fact 
is that it was only when circumstances drove them to it, that 
they set foot outside Judaea. The author obviously under- 
stood that the apostles from the very beginning contemplated 
the conversion of the Gentiles as well as the Jews. Thus Peter 
and the other original apostles are ' Paulinised,' and in like 
manner judaising tendencies are attributed to Paul.^ Such a 
perversion of the actual historical facts can certainly have 
been accomplished only by one who was as unfamiliar with the 
history of the primitive congregations as he was with the 
conflicts which Paul had to wage. It is inconceivable that 
Luke should have constructed a legend like that of Pentecost, 
and equally inconceivable that he should have incorporated it 
into his history. 

These same suspicions are still more justified in reference to Con 
the story of Cornelius (x. 1-xi. 18 ; cf. xv. 7-9). It is not the comeiius. 
legendary character in itself, the frequency of visions and 
angelic appearances which is inconsistent with Luke's author- 
ship, but the whole significance which the author attributes to 
the event. 

In the first place, by a revelation that could not be mis- 
understood, Peter would have been enlightened about the 
absence of distinction between clean and unclean food. This is 
flatly contradicted by his hesitation in Antioch (Gal. ii. 11-13). 

In the second place, this vision, if it were consistently 

^ Jiilichor, Einl. in das Neue Testament, p. .398-402. 



thought out or interpreted symboUcally and taken in com- 
bination with that of Cornelius and the pouring out of the gift 
of the Holy Ghost in which the Gentiles shared and which 
impelled Peter to baptize them, would have given Peter not 
only the right to convert the Gentiles, but would have made 
it his duty. Peter would have to be considered as the first 
chosen instrument for the conversion of the Gentiles, as the 
pioneer by the grace of God, who opened the way through all 
of the old prejudices to the great work. 

Thirdly, the reference to the baptism of CorneUus (xv. 7-9), 
which is certainly the work of the author of Acts, shows us 
clearly why the author introduced the story into his scheme. 
He considered it important to show that it was not Paul, but 
Peter, who was the first to receive the call to convert the 
Gentiles ; and that it was not Paul, but Peter, who was the 
first pioneer in the work. It is difiicult to attribute such a 
depreciation of Paul's position to a personal pupil.^ 

Thus the first part of Acts strengthens the arguments which 
make Luke's authorship incredible. For the whole work we 
may maintain the thesis that the author had never come into 
personal contact with Paul, and for this reason alone was able 
to present the history of the Apostolic age calmly and consist- 
ently, and to date back to the earliest times the compromise 
between Jerusalem and the Diaspora, which was not attained 
until post-apostolic times. 

There remains for us only the further task of presenting 
briefly our opinion of the origin of Acts. 
The author The author was not Luke ; but he used as a source a diary 
^ar ^"^^ ^ o^ liuke's, and this circumstance is sufficient to explain his interest 
in Paul. He probably collected further traditions about Paul 
and likewise sought for informants about the acts of the original 
apostles. He probably learned many things in Antioch and 
Caesarea. But he must have been able to discover much less 
about the original apostles than about Paul. He himself, or 

1 Cf. Bousset, Theolog. Eundschau, 1908, p. 190 f. 


his informants, were interested in the early history only in so 
far as it made clear the harmony between the original apostles, 
the first preachers, and Paul, and prepared the way for his work. 
The author was already so far removed from the conflicts and 
successes of Paul that he no longer thought it derogatory to 
his hero to credit the original apostles with having been the first 
labourers in the work of converting the Gentiles. Nor did he 
feel that he was perverting history when he reduced the long 
story of the conflicts between Paul and the Judaisers to a 
formal agreement made after a single discussion at a council of 
apostles and elders at Jerusalem. 

That the author employed the first person plural in some Use of the 
places without giving any explanation seems strange to us (cf . pp. "^^^ Person. 
304 f., and 329), but can be accounted for by the literary methods 
of antiquity, which was less careful of such details than our age 
demands, and by analogy with Ezra vii. 27-viii. 34 ; Neh. i. 1-vii. 
5, xii. 31, xiii. 6-31. The dedication to Theophilus is not to be 
understood as though the work were adapted entirely to the 
personal circumstances of Theophilus. It was from the very 
beginning destined for the public, for the Christian Church, and 
probably also for non-Christian readers, hence the apologetic 
tendency. The method corresponds to the habits of antiquity, 
which were different from those of the twentieth century. What 
we condemn as deception to-day is in antiquity to be ascribed 
to a certain ingenuousness. The same naivete which impels 
the author of Acts to leave the ' we ' of another's diary which 
he incorporates into his history appears elsewhere, when he 
attributes speeches which he himself invented or elaborated to 
Peter, Gamaliel, Stephen, or Paul. Particularly crass examples 
are to be found in i. 18 f. and v. 36. We must assume that the 
name of the author was lost when the whole work was published. 
Tradition, which felt the need of a name from Apostolic times 
for such an important work, found in the ' we ' sections the Avay 
pointed to a companion of Paul. Perhaps it was still known 
that Luke had written a diary, or else the fact was correctly 


surmised from recollections still current in Jerusalem or in Rome 
concerning the travelling companions with whom Paul appeared 
in Macedonia or on the journey he undertook to raise moneys. 
Third When we have disproved the truth of the tradition con- 

Lucan. ^° cemiug the authorship of Acts, we have of course done the same 
for the Third Gospel. It has often been emphatically stated that 
the Gospel itself gives criticism no hold. As a matter of fact, the 
result of a critical examination points the way to a consideration, 
important though seldom noted. It would be very strange — one 
can of course not say more — if the fullest of the synoptic Gospels 
had been written by a pupil of Paul, while the Pauline Epistles 
rather ignore the synoptic tradition. What is strange in this 
identification, which criticism has now dissolved, has usually 
been concealed by talk of the Paulinism of Luke.i This Paulinism 
is a fiction. The comforting announcement of forgiveness and 
grace, as we read it in Luke (xviii. 9-17, xv., xxiii. 41-43) is far 
from being Paulinism. If we decide on the shorter text in Luke's 
account of the Lord's Supper, then Luke appears as the Gospel 
farthest removed from Paulinism, since no account is taken in 
any way of the death of Christ as a means of salvation. The 
real author of the ' Lucan history ' was acquainted with some 
phrases of Pauline theology (cf. Acts xiii. 38 i?. ; xv. 11), but 
was far from enriching the primitive Gospel with Pauline dogmas 
and formulas. 
Linguistic The extcnsivc linguistic similarities between the ' we ' 

isttcr sections and the rest of Acts do not stand in the way of this 
similar couclusion. In the first place, the so-called ' lower criticism ' 

throughout ^ 

Acts. is never able to solve such complicated problems or even maintain 

itself against ' higher criticism.' ^ Further, it is possible to 

^ Cf. Schwegler, Kachapost. Zeitalter, ii. p. 41 ff. ; Hilgenfeld, Einl. ui das 
N.T., pp. 571-574; II. J. Holtzmann, Lehrb. der Einl. in das N.T., 3rd ed., 
p. 388 ff. ; Jiilicher, Einl. in das N.T., p. 291 f. ; Van de Sande-Baklmijzen, 
Het dogmatisch karakter van Lc, 1888 ; Mej'boom, Theolog. Tijdsckr., 1889, 
pp. 366-406; Rud. Steck, Der Galaterbr., 1888, pp. 191-211. 

2 P. Wendland, Literaturformen, p. 335 ; R. Reitzenstein in Ilberg's Nene 
Jahrbilcher fiir das klass. Altertum, 1913, i. pp. 410-422. (Noteworthy criticism 
of Harnack's method.) 


point out linguistic differences between the ' we ' sections and 
the rest of the document.^ We must assume, therefore, that the 
author of Acts extensively revised his sources, even the ' we ' 
source ; the Third Gospel is one excellent illustration of this 
method,^ the Antiquities of Josephus is another. Perhaps, too, 
the historic Luke and the author of Acts may have been 
members of the same language group. ^ 

It is further possible that the ' we ' sections were originally 
an independent document, the original 7rpd^ei<i of Luke ; that 
therefore the Gospel is genuine and Acts only an unhistorical 
revision and elaboration of this 7rpd^ei<i of Luke.* There is a 
good deal in favour of this hypothesis, among other things, 
the circumstance that the introduction to Acts (including the 
dedication) has manifestly been revised. But the attempt to 
separate the two elements by assigning to the original irpd^ei^ 
all that seems credible to the modern critic, and to the reviser 
all that seems unthinkable in the mouth of a pupil of Paul, 
depends altogether too much upon the subjective and arbitrary 
decisions on individual points. It is probably impossible to 
avoid the assumption that the last editor of Acts must have 
revised the Gospel again as well. It seems to me, therefore, more 
simple to conclude that the reviser of the ' Lucan history,' the 
one who is responsible for the composition and style of both 
documents and who cannot have been a pupil of Paul, is identical 
with the auctor ad Theojphilum. 

The date assigned to the composition of Acts is not really 
opposed to the conclusion that Luke is not the author. Whether 
he actually lived to be eighty-four years old or not need 
not here be discussed. In any event, if Luke is the author 

1 Cf. W. Bruckner, Protest. Monaishejie, 1911, p. 147 II. Ovcrbcck-l)e 
Wette, Erkl. der Apg. p. xxxix ff. 

2 Cf. Wendt, Die Apg. p. 22 ff. 

3 Cf. P. W. Schmidt, Die Apg. bet De Wette-Overbecl; p. 46 ff. ; E. Schiirer, 
Theolog. Lit.-ziq., 190G, col. 405. 

* Thus, with variations, F. Spitta, Die Apg., 1891 (Source A.) ; A. Gerckc, 
" Dcr diurepos Xiyoi des L\ikas," Hermes, 1894, p. 373 ff. Ed. Norden, Agnosias 
Theos, p. 311 ff. : W. Soitau, Protect. Monatsrb., 19(13, p. 290 ff. 


of Acts, he must have written his histories at a considerable 

age. But we find no traces of senility in the skill displayed in 

the arrangement and composition of the book. If, however, 

Acts is as late as the beginning of the second century, Luke's 

authorship is of course impossible.^ 

Answer to The assumption that the Pauline Epistles were not utilised 

that'Luke ^^ ^^® composition of Acts is consistent with our result. 

would not When conservative criticism declares that a man like Luke 

need Paul s 

letters. would uot havc needed to consult the Epistles, since his 
own experiences and the verbal reports of many eye-witnesses 
offered him sufiicient material for the story of Paul's missionary 
work, while a later comer could not do without the Epistles, and 
would surely have known of their existence, we may answer that 
Luke, to be sure, did not need to have recourse to the Epistles, 
but he had no right to suppress in his story all the things that we 
fortunately know from the letters, and that he could not diverge 
so much from the historical facts which Paul himself gives us 
in his Epistles. What we know from the letters, ' Luke ' must 
certainly have loiown as an eye-witness and an acquaintance of 
eye-witnesses ; and with his knowledge he would surely have 
considered it worth using it to make his narrative fuller and more 
correct than he did. But one cannot correctly maintain that 
Luke had no reason to consult the Epistles. He must have known 
that Paul had written letters — he was himself present when Paul 
wrote the Epistles to the Colossians and to Philemon — ^he there- 
fore certainly knew that Paul's letters contained much informa- 
tion relative to the history of his missionary work. If a friend 
of Paul's composed Acts with the same care that, according to 
the prologue (Lk. i. 1-4), he expended on the Gospel, then he 
certainly would have consulted the letters in so far as they were 
accessible to him. It is much easier to believe that a later comer, 
who utilised predominantly documentary sources, did not have 

^ If we are no longer confined to the eighties, the hypothesis that ' Luke ' 
utilised Josephus becomes, not sure, but more probable ; and the assumption 
that he utilised a document by or about Apollouius of Tyana gains the conditio 
sine qua non. 


recourse to the letters. Perhaps he was not acquainted with 
the most important Epistles, such as those to the Corinthians, 
Galatians, and Romans, or they were not at hand when he wrote 
his book. Such of Paul's Epistles as were accessible to him 
offered him no material that he could use. Thus we can explain 
also why the spirit of the Epistles of Paul remained alien to him 
and why he did not mention the fact that Paul had written any 

The preceding considerations eliminate those points which Luke the 
seem to controvert the critical view and support the traditional 
one. We have only a little to add. No one has as yet proved 
that the ' Lucan histories ' must have been written by a physi- 
cian (cf. p. 315 f.). When criticism forbids the view that Luke the 
physician composed the documents, it is not refuted by the indi- 
cation of interest in medicine and of technical terms. These 
are even more compatible with the assumption that the author 
probably was not a physician at all, since they may also be 
explained by the assumption that the author possessed a certain 
amount of medical knowledge — the majority of the authors of 
antiquity must have belonged to the medical profession accord- 
ing to the demonstrations of Hobart, Harnack, and Zahn — 
to say nothing of the fact that, as a last solution, it would be 
possible to assume that both Luke and the author of Acts were 

If the more important arguments in favour of the traditional 
view turn out to be fallacious, the less important ones become 
less cogent than ever. The frequent references to Antioch (p. 316) 
can be adequately explained by the importance of the city, and 
perhaps by the utilisation of traditions originating from it." 
It is not necessary to assume that the tradition that Luke was 

^ Cf. C. Clemen, Theolog. Rundschau, 1907, pp. 99-103; P. W. Schmidt, Die 
Apg. pp. 6-18; Wendland, Literalurformen, p. 335; H. J. Cadbury, Style and 
Literary Method of Lul:e, p. 39 fE., and see below p. 349 ff. 

^ It is just as legitimate to speak of Antiochian traditions as it is to speak 
of Jerusalem traditions. Cf. Harnack, Die Apg. p. 134 fF. The origin of the 
tradition has no bearing on the origin of the author. 


born in Antioch is correct. Its first appearance in Eusebius is 
Author of The relations between Luke and Mark are quickly disposed 

books and ^^ • "^^^ author of the ' Lucan histories ' knew and utilised 
Mark. Mark's Gospel just as did the author of ' Matthew,' and he 
obtained information from Jerusalem or elsewhere about the 
household of Mark's mother. In view of the other facts, it is 
not permissible to draw any definite conclusions from these two 
Conclusion. TMs much of the Tubingen criticism remains firmly established : 
Acts cannot have been written by Luke, the contemporary of 
the apostles and the companion of Paul, because above all the 
author had no longer a correct idea of the events before and 
during Paul's missionary activity, of what Paul accomplished, 
or of the fundamental ideas of Pauline theology. The other part 
of their theory is untenable, that a special purpose, of furthering 
the plans of a definite party, controlled the pen of the author, 
and led him to revise what he knew to be a reliable tradition. 
We may find traces of a special purpose in the circumstance that 
the author has suppressed all sorts of unpleasant matter — 
only it is now no longer possible to prove what he knew but 
kept silent about. He was, for the rest, more unconsciously 
than consciously controlled by the conviction that in the Apostolic 
age all was harmonious, and that the work of converting the 
Gentiles was from the very beginning a part of the plan of the 
original apostles. Such a view may well have been held in good 
faith by a man living in post-apostolic times (a.d. 80-110). 
The historic Luke would have uttered it knowing its untruth. 
Thus the critical attitude, without making the special attempt, 
has in the end an apologetic result. It re-establishes the 
honesty of Paul and of the author of Acts. 

1 Cf. also the enticing idea of Eamsay {St. Paul, p. 200 ff.), that Luke was 
a Macedonian and was himself the man who appeared to Paul in the dream, 
Acts xvi. 9. Since the ' we ' first appears in connection with this vision, and 
since the narrator employing the first person actually has relations with Philippi 
(cf. Acts xvi., XX. 5 f.), it is possible to entertain this idea. But the hypothesis 
is far from sure. Cf. Wendt, Die Apg. p. 244. 


By H. J. Cadbury and the Editors 

It remains to discuss three points which are subsidiary in im- 
portance chiefly because they lead to no clear result. (1) The 
possibility that the presence of medical language in Acts confirms 
the tradition that the writer was a physician. (2) The possibility 
that Acts shows a knowledge of Josephus. (3) The general 
question of the chronological limits within which the writing of 
the Gospel and Acts must be placed. 

The tradition of the Church identifies the writer of Acts with Medical 
the ' Luke the physician ' mentioned in Col. iv. 14. Starting '*"8uage- 
with the assumption that this is true, early commentators 
illustrated it by drawing attention to medical phrases in Acts. 
Wettstein collected most of these illustrations into his commentary. 
But a new turn was given to the matter in 1882 by W. K. Hobart 
in a treatise entitled The Medical Language of St. Luke. This 
book collected parallels to Luke and Acts from medical writers. 
Many of these had been noted before, but always as illustration of 
the fact that Luke was a physician — regarded as a known truth 
— not to prove that he must have been so. The special feature 
of Hobart was that he converted illustration into argument. He 
went too far, and his argument was for some time discredited ; 
but it was revived by Harnack in 1906 in his Beitrdge with such 
skill that his readers were in many cases swept off their feet. 
Finally, in 1920, the subject was again taken up by Henry Cadbury, 



who in his Style and Literary Method of Lvke'^ submitted 
Harnack's arguments to fresh criticism, and reached the result 
that they fail to establish the conclusions put forward. 

Referring to Hobart, Harnack says that " those who have 
studied it carefully will find it impossible to escape the con- 
clusion that the question is not one of merely accidental colouring, 
but that this great historical work was composed by a writer 
who either was a physician or was quite intimately acquainted 
with medical language and science " (p. 14). He accordingly 
collects in an appendix to his book the most telling examples. 
His arguments may be summarised in his own language as 
follows : 

(1) "In those passages where the author speaks as an eye- 
witness medical traits are especially and prominently apparent." 

(2) " Nearly all of the alterations and additions which the 
third evangelist has made in the Marcan text are most simply and 
surely explained from the professional interest of a physician." 

(3) In " the stories of diseases and subjects of allied character 
pecuUar to St. Luke . . . traits appear which declare the interest 
or the sharp eyes or the language of the physician." 

(4) " The representation of our Lord given in the third Gospel 
is dominated by the conception of Him as a wondrous Healer 
and Saviour of the sick." 

(5) " The language of St. Luke elsewhere is coloured by 
medical phraseology." 

The fallacy of Harnack's evidence could be shown completely 
only by a refutation as lengthy as his own proof. Many of his 
proofs are highly subjective, based on assumptions as to what a 
physician in antiquity would or would not have been likely to 
say. Others, especially (4), are drawn from the prominence of 
medical subjects and details in the narrative, an emphasis which, 
as Harnack himself agrees, might be due to the subject-matter, 
or to an entirely unprofessional interest of the writer. The real 
weight of his arguments rests upon the alleged technical medical 
^ Harvard Theological Studies, vi. 


character of Greek words and plirases occurring in these writings. 
Here we must content ourselves by reviewing in order these 
verbal arguments only.^ 

(1) In the ' we ' passages Harnack notes the following 
(pp. 176-181): Actsxxviii. 1-7 OepfiT], /cad aTrre iv = ' iniect,' Orjpiov 
= e'^cSva, TTi/jiTrpdaOai, KaTaTTLirretv, /x7]Sev citottov. Acts xvi. 
16 ft'. TTvdwv. Acts XX. 9 Kara(f)6p6/jievo'i vttvw (SaOel and 
Karevey^deh airo rod vttpov. Acts xxvii. 3, 17 eTrifxeXeia (cf. 
iTTLfxeXeiadai, eVi/aeXco?, Luke x. 34, 35, xv. 8), ^orjOeia, 
viroi^wvvvvat. But Oepfirj, of which Harnack says " this word, 
rare, I believe, in ordinary use, and only found here in the New 
Testament, is among physicians the general term for ^e/oytior?;?," 
occurs apparently more frequently in Hellenistic Greek than 
Oepfiorr}^, while the latter, as a matter of fact, is not at all in- 
frequent in medical writings. The meaning which Harnack assigns 
to KaOdirretv is very doubtful ; in the sense ' to fasten on,' as it 
is usually here translated, it is a very common word in all lands 
of writing, (^rjpiov is also used of reptiles, especially poisonous 
ones, by lay writers, as Plutarch and Lucian.^ UifiTrpdaOat and 
KaraTTLTTTeLv in the sense applied by Acts occur in Greek writers 
from the time of Homer.^ "Atotto? is especially frequent in 
litotes in all grades of Greek literature from Thucydides to the 
papyri. IJvdcov does not appear to occur in medical writings 
(Hobart does not mention it) ; it is Plutarch who tells us that 
it meant ' ventriloquist.' * And even though " Passow gives 
only medical authorities for Kara^epeaOai and Kara^opd in the 
sense of sleep" (Harnack, p. 180), yet Wettstein's examples from 
Aristotle, Josephus, Diodorus, Plutarch, Lucian, and other non- 
medical writers show that the expressions in Acts xx. 9 are not 
technical terms. Of course eTrifxiXeta and its cognates are not rare, 
and even in the special sense of medical attention which Harnack 
assumes for Acts xxvii. 3 they occur in ordinary writers. ^\'hat- 

1 See Stijle and Literary Method of Luke for a fuller discussion of the details. 

* It is the common word for ' snake ' in modern Greek. 

' For examples from the Greek Bible see Num. v. 21-27 ; 4 Mace. iv. 11. 

* De defeclu oracul. ix. (414 e). 


ever may be the meaning of the words ^orjOeia and virol^Mvvvvai 
as applied to the manoeuvres of the sailors in the storm, it must 
be confessed that their use is as likely due to nautical as to 
medical terminology. 'Qo-qdeia " is applied to all conceivable 
objects " (Harnack, p. 181) by others than the doctors. In fact, 
both words have a wide range of usage. 

(2) In Luke's revision of Mark's stories of miracles, Harnack 
finds significance in the following (pp. 182-188) : 

(a) 'FLyjrav (Luke iv. 35) for airapd^av (Mark i. 26). 
(6) Svve'^o/j.evi] Trvperm fieyaXcp (Luke iv. 38) for Kare/ceiro 
TTvpecraovaa (Mark i. 30). 

(c) TI\^prj<; XeVpa? (Luke v. 12) for \e7rp09 (Mark i. 40). 

(d) IIapa\€Xv/xivo<i (Luke v. 18) for irapaXvTiKO'i (Mark ii. 3). 
{g) "Ecttt; r] pvaa (Luke viii. 44) for i^r^pdvdrj 7) nrrj'yi') 

(Mark v. 29). 

{i) "ETri^XeyfraL (Luke ix. 38). 

Of these words, pcTrreiv and TrapaXeXv/juevof; are, according 
even to Harnack, improvements in style. ^vve'xea-Oai means ' to 
be afflicted ' in good classical Greek. It would be unsafe to put 
much stress on the adjectives fieja^; and 7rX7;/o??? ; they are 
not very rare in any Greek writers, and are favourite words 
with the author in many other connections. 'Puo-t? is taken by 
Luke from the Marcan context (v. 25), while earrj, to judge 
from the examples given, was used by the doctors transitively 
in the sense ' to staunch ' and not intransitively as in Luke.^ 
Granting that eirt^Xeireiv may be " used technically for a phy- 
sician's examination of the patient," eXerjaov in the parallel in 
Matthew (xvii, 15) suggests that here Lulce uses it as he does 
elsewhere (i. 48) in the sense common in the LXX. of ' pity.' 

(3) The examples in Harnack's third class of passages are 

^ Perhaps I may here correct the oversight through which all reference 
to the intransitive use of larrjfii in the LXX. was omitted in my earlier dis- 
cussion, Style and Literary Method of Luke, both on p. 44 and on p. 57 note 43. 
In the sense ' cease flowing ' the verb is used, as in Plutarch, of a river 
(Joshua iii. 13, 16), of oil (2 Kg. iv. 6 kclI ^(ttt] to eXaiov, " And the oil stayed "), 
and even, as in Luke, I.e., of blood (Exod. iv. 25, 26 LXX., not Heb. or Eng. : 
?(TTT] TO al/j,a tT]^ TrepLTOf.i.T}s Tod TraiSiov fxav). — H. J. C. 


(pp. 188-194) : Lukevii. 15 dvaKadl^ew ; xiii. 11-13 avaKvirretv, 
avopOovv, airokveiv ', xiv. 2 vBpco7nK6<; ; x. 30 rjfuOavi]^ ; 
xvi. 21-26 e\KO<i, eXKOVcrOai, KaTayjrv'^etv, 68vvaa6at, -^ciafia, 
(nripl^etv ; Acts iii. 8 a(f)v8pov ', ix. 18 dTroTrLirreLv, Xe7rt9 ; 
xiii. 11 d^A,u9, (TK6ro<i ; xiv. 8 dhvvaro'^ ; v. 5-10 e/ci|ru^eti', 
(TvareWeiv ; x. 10 eKaracn^;. 

Of these words, acfjvSpov and i)p.i.6av'>'<; are both quite rare. 
Hobart gives no example of either from the doctors, though 
Harnack has emended one of his quotations from Galen {Medicus, 
10) to read a(f)vSpa with Luke. The synonymous forms atpupa 
and r)ij,idur]<; which are cited by Hobart from the doctors are 
neither of them unusual among lay writers. Of dvaKaOl^etv 
Harnack says : " This word in the intransitive sense seems to 
be met with only in medical writers, who use it to signify ' to 
sit up again in bed.' " But Plutarch uses it in exactly the same 
way {Philopoem. 368 a, Alex. 671 d). Of iK^\rv^etv Harnack says 
that it " seems to be confined to medical literature. Before 
Luke {loc. cit. and Acts xii. 23) instances of its use are found only 
in Hippocrates, and then in Aretaeus and Galen." But not only 
is the word used by the doctors in a different sense, ' to cool off,' 
but its occurrence in Ezek. xxi. 7, Herondas iv. 29, Babrius 115, 
11, in the sense ' to expire ' shows that Luke is using a popular 
expression. Similarly a-varekkeLv used in Acts of wrapping a 
corpse, though it is quite unusual, is better illustrated by such 
passages as Euripides, Troades, 378, or Lucian, Imagines, 7, than 
by medical passages on the bandaging of hmbs or contraction 
of organs. The remaining words are none of them rare in ordinary 
Greek ; each can be paralleled in the sense in which Luke uses 
it from at least two or three lay writings in Hellenistic Greek, 
such as the Greek Old Testament, the papyri, or the works of 
writers like Josephus, Philo, Polybius, Lucian, and Plutarch. 

(5) Omitting for the moment Harnack's fourth point, for it 

contains no arguments from vocabulary, we come to his last list 

of " medical terms " (pp. 196-198). Excluding repetitions, these 

are irapa-^prjp.a, TrpoaBoKav, dvdiTeLpo<;, o\oK\i]pla, uTroylrv^eiv, 

VOL. II 2 A 


dvd-ylrv^i,<i, irvorj, evirveetv, eKTrveeiv, ^(ooyoveiv, etV fjuavlav 
TrepirpeTTeiv, KpacTrdXr], 'X,p(o<i, ovk dar}p,o<; 7ro\i<;, ^eXovr], Tprjfia, 

These examples are in general of the same character as those 
already considered. None of them is confined in use to the 
medical writers. Many of them are of frequent occurrence in 
Greek literature, as any Greek scholar wiU know at sight or can 
prove by consulting a lexicon. Several of the parallels are far 
from happy. Thus ^cooyovelv is used by Luke in a sense common 
in the LXX. but never found in the Greek doctors. Hobart 
himself confesses that irepLTpeireiv does not occur in the medical 
writings in the same sense as in Acts (p. 268), and that oXoKXrjpia 
is not used at aU (p. 193) ; but he calls remarkable a parallel to 
Luke's OVK d(r7]fjio<i 7roA.t<? in the obscure, probably late and 
spurious Letters of Hippocrates, though the litotes, and even 
the identical expression, can be abundantly paralleled from 
other writers. 

The verbal arguments in Harnack's evidence are uncon- 
vincing. In confining his attention to the medical and the 
Lucan writings and their resemblances, he has failed to observe 
the differences between them or their agreements with other 
Greek writers. Some of his examples are not found in the 
medical writers at all, others are used by them in a sense different 
from that in which they are employed in Luke and Acts. Even 
those which reaUy do occur in the same sense in the medical and 
Lucan writings are not confined to them. This use of " medical 
terms " by laymen allows of only two alternative explanations 
(a) either technical medical language was the common property 
of unprofessional writers, or (6) the words cited are not really 
technical terms at all. Whichever explanation be accepted, the] 
use of such words in any book does not prove that its author was 
a physician. For if medical terms are so loosely defined it is 
possible to find them in great quantity in many a writer never 
suspected of medical knowledge.^ 

^ E.g. Lueiau or Josephus. The short letter of Aristeas uses 80 of Hobart's i 
words in nearly 200 places in all. 


Even Matthew and Mark do not fall so far behind Luke in 
' medical interest ' as Harnack would have us believe. Many 
terms quite as well attested in the doctors occur in their writings 
though not in Luke's. Even in the stories of miracles they con- 
tain details which Luke omits, including the diagnosis of the 
centurion's boy as suffering from paralysis (Matt. viii. 6, con- 
trast Luke vii. 2), many significant symptoms in the epileptic 
(Mark ix. 14-27, cf. Luke ix. 37-43), and at least two entire stories 
of cures told with much detail (Mark vii. 31-37, viii. 22-26). And 
also in the summaries of the activity of Jesus and the disciples 
— and this is Harnack's fourth point (pp. 195, 196) — Matthew no 
less than Luke emphasises healing and distinguishes different 
kinds of cases. Thus he even substitutes healing for teaching in 
his source (Matt. xiv. 14 = Mark vi. 34, Matt. xix. 2 = Mark x. 1, 
Matt. xxi. 14 = Mark xi. 18), and enumerates much more fully 
than the parallel passages various diseases (Matt. iv. 23-24 = 
Mark i. 32-34, 39 ; Matt. x. 8 = Luke x. 9 ; Matt. xv. 29-31). 

One can but be attracted in the study of Acts by Harnack's 
argument, especially as to medical language. It is only slowly 
that a study of the facts convinces the scholar that the whole of 
the contention as to the medical language of Luke is an immense 
fallacy. Neither Harnack nor Hobart sufficiently considered 
the use of the phrases which they call 'medical' The fact that a 
word is found in a medical book proves nothing as to the profes- 
sion of another writer who uses it, if it be also used elsewhere.^ 

The material for a discussion of the relation of Josephus to Luke's in- 
the Lucan writings was given in the eighteenth century by J. B. f^ jowlphus. 
Ott, Spicilegium sive excerpta ex Flavio Josepho ad Novi Testa- 

1 Of course the real solution of the problem is that neither the doctors nor 
the laymen used a technical vocabulary in antiquity, and the whole assumption 
of ' medical language ' in any ancient writer is a mare's nest. See G. F. 
Moore in Cudbury, Style and Literary Method of Luke, pp. 53 f., and the statement 
of Galen in his treatise On the Natural Faculties that he used ordinary language 
Galen makes a similar claim for Hippocrates, Comm. Hipp, de epideiniis, iii. 32 
(Kuhn xvii. A. 678) 6 yap tol rod 'HpanXeiSov vl6s 'IinroKpdT-qs . . . (palffrai 
avv7)de(TTa.Toii re Kal dik tovto ffa<f)iffi. rots ofd/xacn Kexprjfi^vos, & KaXfTc fOos tarl 
Tois pr]T0plK0h Tro\iTtKd. 


menti illustrationem, 1741, and by J. P. Krebs's Observationes in 
Novum Testamentum e Flavio Josepho, 1755. This material 
was worked over in the nineteenth century, and the theory 
evolved that Luke was dependent on Josephus. Keim ^ and 
others adopted this view, but it was most fully stated by Krenkel 
in his Josephus und Lucas, 1894. In some ways, indeed, it was 
even too fully stated, and a far better impression of the weight of 
the argument can be gained from F. C. Burkitt's Gospel History 
and its Transmission, pp. 105 ff. 

The case will always rest on three passages, and it is safe to 
say that they can never be completely explained away, yet will 
never convince every one. They are given here in the order of 

Theudas. (1) In Acts V. 36 f ., Gamaliel is represented as referring to the 

rebellion of Theudas which took place several years after the time 
when he was speaking. Moreover, he is made to say — that 
Theudas rebelled before Judas of Galilee. No attempt to discover 
some other Theudas has succeeded, and it is possible that Luke 
was misled by an inaccurate memory of Josephus, Ant. xx. 5. 1 f . 
In this passage Josephus describes the insurrection of Theudas in 
the procuratorship of Fadus, and goes on to tell how the sons of 
Judas of Galilee, who had raised a rebellion in the time of 
Quirinius, were executed by Alexander, the successor of Fadus. 

It will be seen that here Theudas comes before the mention 
of Judas, and if any one overlooked the fact that it was the children 
of Judas, not himseK, that were executed, he might easily pro- 
duce Luke's erroneous combination. 

Lysauias. (2) In Luke ill. 1, Lysanias is represented as the Tetrarch 

of Abilene about 28 a.d. But the only Lysanias known to 
history as ruling in Abila died in 36 B.C. Attempts have been 
made to show that there was another Lysanias at the time 
mentioned by Luke, but they have not been successful,^ and it 

1 Avs dem Urchristentum, 1878, i. 1-27. See also H. Holtzmann's notable 
articles in the Z.W.Th. in 1873, 1877, and 1880. 

^ The most ingenious are those of E. Schiirer, G.J.V. 


is hardly too much to say that no one would have dreamt of a 
second Lysanias as ruler of Abila had it not been for this isolated 
passage in Luke.^ It is therefore worth noting that when 
Josephus relates how in 53 a.d., Agrippa II. obtained Abila he 
adds that this had been {yeyovet) the tetrarchy of Lysanias. The 
whole evidence is most conveniently to be found in the article 
on Lysanias in the Ejwyclopaedia Biblica. It is clear that an 
inaccurate knowledge of Josephus would adequately account for 
the error in Luke. 

(3) The question of the Tribune to Paul in Acts xxi. 38, The 
" Art thou not the Egyptian who before these days revolted '°^^ '*"' 
and led out in the desert four thousand men of the Sicarii ? " seems 
a curious combination of three passages ia Josephus. In B.J. 
ii. 13. 3, he describes the Sicarii ; ia the next paragraph the 
false prophets who led men into the desert, and were destroyed 
by the cavalry of Felix ; finally in the next paragraph comes the 
story of the Egyptian who led 30,000 men out of (not into) the 
desert, and the destruction of many by the Roman soldiers. 

These three examples of Lucan errors explained by Josephus are 
certainly very persuasive. But they fall just short of demonstra- 
tion. The case of Theudas is the strongest, but even here there 
is always the possibility that Luke and Josephus were using a 
common source, in which the events were arranged in the order 
given by Josephus.- The case of Lysanias is adequately met by 
the probability that the district was always known as the 
' Tetrarchy (or kingdom) of Lysanias ' long after his death, and 
that Luke, influenced by this, merely made an error in chrono- 
logy. Finally, the case for dependence on Josephus in the 
reference to the Egyptian is weakened by the fact that Josephus 
says that he led 30,000, while Luke says only 4000. The number 
of rebels grows in tradition more often than it decreases, and 
Luke's figure is surely the more probable. 

Thus the argument that Luke used Josephus is not quite 

^ There were no doubt other persons named Lysanias belonging to the 
family of Lysanias the Tetrarch ; cf. C.I.G. 4521 and 4523. 

- See, however, the warning of F. C. Burkitt, Qospel Transmission, p. 108. 


conclusive. If it were, it would fix the date of Luke and Acts 
as at the earliest the very end of the first century, for the Anti- 
quities of Josephus are not earlier than 93 a.d. 

The date Is there any other method by which the date of the Gospel 

and Acts can be fixed ? Probably not. At least none has yet 
been discovered. The extreme limits within which the com- 
position of the two books must fall are c. 60 a.d. or a little 
earlier, when Paul reached Rome, and c. 150 a.d., when Marcion 
made use of the Gospel. The two extremes are improbable ; 
but just as there is no decisive proof that Luke was not written 
before the fall of Jerusalem, there is also none that it was used by 
any wi-iter before Marcion. Nevertheless, most students think 
that the rewriting of the Marcan eschatological discourse (Mark 
xiii.) implies the influence of the last days of Jerusalem. On the 
other hand, it seems extremely imlikely that the Gospel would 
ever have been canonised had it not been generally known before 
the time of Marcion. In other words, Marcion more probably 
took the Gospel from the Church than did the Church from 
Marcion. These two arguments may be held to make the 
probable limits 70-115 rather than 60-150. 

Any closer dating depends entirely on the opinion as to the 
arguments set out above. If Acts was written by a companion 
of Paul, each year after 80 a.d. becomes mcreasingly improbable. 
But if Acts was merely based on a document written by Luke, a 
later date is easily acceptable. 

There is no direct evidence ; neither authorship nor date is 
susceptible of demonstration. No one, however, can study the 
Lucan writmgs without forming some opinion, even while 
acknowledging its precariousness, and it seems right for the 
Editors of this volume to express their own view. Ten years ago 
both of them felt reasonably sure that Acts was actually written 
by Luke, the companion of Paul. Slowly, however, they have 
come to feel the weight of the argument derived from the com- 
parison with the Pauline epistles, and at present they incline to 


the view that Luke, the companion of Paul, wrote the ' we- 
sections,' and probably the narrative adhering to them, but that 
the combination of this document with the rest of Acts, and the 
composition of the Gospel, were the work of a later WTiter, who 
probably lived in the Flavian period. If they were obliged to 
choose a more specific date they would take the last five years of 
the first century, thus leavmg room for the probability that Luke 
was acquainted with Josephus. Nevertheless, they would con- 
clude by repeating that this view is based on a general balance 
of probabilities, on which wide difference of opinion is possible and 
even desirable. Its truth cannot be demonstrated ; but neither 
can that of any other view ; the only wise course is, whenever 
a question is at issue involving the authorship or date of Acts, 
to leave a T^dde margin for possible error. 






According to the traditional view, generally accepted both The 
by Catholics and Protestants, the book of Acts was written in view of 
Rome, while Paul was still a prisoner there, by his companion ^^^' 
Luke, ' the beloved physician,' who drew his materials partly 
from his own personal observation, partly from Paul and other 
eye-witnesses of the events recorded. The purpose of the book 
was wholly historical, to recount the achievements of the apostles, 
or the history of the early Church, as the gospels had recounted 
the words and works of Christ, and its trustworthiness was 
beyond question. 

The traditional view remained unchanged imtil the close of objections 
the eighteenth century, when the Acts began to come imder the ''*■ 
same scrutiny that was given to the gospels and other writings 
of the New Testament by the awakening historical criticism of 
the day. It was e\adent at once to the critical eye that the book 
fulfilled in a very imperfect way the historical purpose which 
had been ascribed to it by tradition. Instead of recording the 
acts of the apostles it confined itself almost exclusively to Peter 
and Paul, and even Peter received but scant attention. More- 
over, the fragmentary nature of the account, the many omissions 
evident to any one acquainted with Paul's Epistles, the frequent 
repetitions, the extreme sketchiness of some parts and the minute 
detail of others, the marked emphasis upon certain matters, 




J. D. 


and Paulus, 

and the brief and casual reference to others of equal importance 
all seemed to demand some explanation. If the author was 
famiUar with the period he was writing about, as had been com- 
monly taken for granted, he must have had some other than a 
purely historical motive, or if not, then his knowledge of the 
period must have been very limited and fragmentary.^ 

Among those who adopted the former alternative and 
attempted to find an explanation of the peculiarities of Acts in 
the purpose for which it was written was J. D. MichaeUs,^ who 
rejected the idea that the Acts was intended to be a history of 
the Church or a biography of Paul and maintained that it had 
a double purpose : first, " to record in a trustworthy way the 
initial outpouring of the Holy Spirit, together with the first 
miracles for the confirmation of the truth of the Christian religion ' ' ; 
and second, " to report those circumstances that proved the right 
of the heathen in the Church of Christ, a right opposed by the 
Jews especially at the time when Luke wrote. Paul himself, 
whose companion Luke was, was at that time a prisoner in Rome 
as a consequence of the accusations of the Jews who were hostile 
to him on the ground that he admitted heathen to the church." ^ 

Griesbach of Jena, in an essay pubHshed in 1798,* is said to 

^ Compare the words of Schwanbeck, writing in 1847 : " There were two 
ways of explaining the fragmentary character of Acts. Either the author 
would not tell more or he could not. In the former case the general historical 
purpose of the Acts must be given up or modified ; besides the historical aim 
another more particular aim must be assumed, nullifying the former or pushing 
it into the background. In the latter case the ignorance of the author con- 
cerning many matters is accounted for by the limitations of his sources whether 
oral or written. The former path was much broader than the latter, and could 
be travelled more easily without stopping to prove every step in detail. As a 
consequence it was for a long time exclusively followed, aud is still the favourite 
path " {Uber die Quellen der Schriften des Lukas, p. 74). 

^ Einleitung in die gottlichen Schriften des neuen Bundes, third edition, 1777 ; 
Th. ii. § 154. 

3 Op. cit. p. 995. 

* Program de consilio quo scriptor in Actibos Apostolicis concinnandis ductu s 
fuerit {Jenaer Osterprogram for 1798). I have not myself seen Griesbach's essay, 
which is ascribed by some (e.g. by Lechler in his Aposlolisclies und nachapos- 
iolisches Zeitalter, third edition, p. 7) to Griesbach's colleaguo Paulus. Compare 
the remark of Semler, referring to the silence of Acts touching Peter and Paul's 
dispute at Antioch : " Lucas igitur prudenter omisit eas historiae veteris partes, 


have maintained that Acts was written to defend the Apostle 
Paul against the attacks of the Judaising Christians of the day. 
He was followed the next year by his colleague Paulus.^ So 
far as I am aware neither Griesbach nor Paulus discussed the 
authenticity of Acts, but the tendency of their theory was, of 
course, to throw discredit upon its trustworthiness. 

Luke's many omissions were explained by Eckermann ^ as due Eckcrmanu. 
to his purpose to select from the events known to him only 
such as showed most clearly the miraculous co-operation of 
God in the establishment of his kingdom on earth. 

According to Hanlein,^ the Acts had the aim of showing God's Haniein. 
aid in the spread of Christianity, of promoting the reputation 
of the Apostles by recording their miracles, and of indicating 
the claim of the Gentiles to equal rights with the Jews in the 
blessings of Christianity.^ 

Eichhorn^ held that the aim of Acts was not to give a Eichhom. 
history of the Church or of the apostles but of Christian missions. 
In his New Testament Introduction (§ 148) he discussed at con- 
siderable length and repudiated the theory that the book was 
written to defend Paul's preaching to the Gentiles and his 
doctrine of the abrogation of the Jewish law. 

On the other hand, S. G. Frisch ^ accepted the defence of s. G. 
Paul and his apostleship as one, though not the only purpose 
of the Acts. " To me," he says, " as I have proved at 
length, it is evident that Luke while he wished to defend 
the cause of Paul against adversaries and detractors and to 

quae ad continuandam divisionem et separationem utriusque familiae con- 
vert! potuissent, isto tempore" {Paraphrasis epistolae ad Galaias, 1779, p. 56), 

^ Introductionis in Novum Testamentum capita selectiora, 1799, p. 281 ff. 

° Erkldrung oiler dunkeln Stellen des Neuen Testaments (1807), vol. ii. p. 
164 ff. 

^ Einleitung in die Schriften des Neuen Testaments (second edition, 1809), 

* Th. ill. p. 156 f. 

'" Einleitung in das Neue Testament, 1810, vol. ii. § 147. 

" In his dissertation, " Utrumque Lucae commentarium de vita, dictis fac- 
tisque Jesu eb apostoloruni non tarn historicae simplicitatis, quam artificiosae 
tractationis indolem habere " (1817). 



vindicate for him among the Christians the highest apostolic 
authority, and also to remove the doubts and scruples which 
were troubling the Christian communities, had always another 
end in mind not only in his second work but also in his first : 
this, namely, to persuade the Jews and the Jewish Christians 
who were still in doubt whether they should receive or reject, 
or whether they should cling to or abandon the Christian 
religion, that the dignity of Jesus the Messiah was greater than 
Moses enjoyed, that the origin of the new covenant was divine, 
and that it was the will of God and of Jesus the Messiah 
that all men whatsoever should be partakers of Christian 
salvation. Luke therefore strove, though in a different way, 
to accomplish the same object as the author of the Epistle to the 
Hebrews." ^ 

Mayerhoff. According to MayerhofE,^ the purpose of Acts was to set forth 

" first, the extensive as well as intensive spread of the Christian 
Church from its origin in Jerusalem, the centre of Judaism, 
to Rome, the centre of heathenism ; secondly, the opposition 
to it, which became always the means to a wider spread ; and 
thirdly, the inner confirmation of it." ^ 

Credner. Crcdncr * explained the peculiar character of Acts by the 

author's Paulinism. " The selection from primitive Christian 
history made by the author of Acts is to be explained alone by 
the fact that he was a Paulinist. He picks out only what is of 
significance for Pauline doctrine, as the entire work is but an 
historical commentary on the Pauline sentences : ' The Gospel 
is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth, 
to the Jew first and also to the Greek.' ' Both Jews and Greeks 
are all under sin.' ' There is no difference between Jew and 
Greek.' " ^ 

Credner concludes also from the silence of the Book of Acts 

1 Op. cit. p. 53 f. 

- Einleitung in die petrinischen Schriften nebst ciner Abhandlung ilber den 
Verfasser der Apostelgeschichte, 1835. 

* Op. cit. p. 5. 

* Einleitung in das Xeue Testament, 1836, * Op. cit. I. 1, p. 269. 


concerning Paul's death that the author planned to write a 
third work/ an opinion that has been adopted by some modern 
scholars, e.g. by Spitta ^ and Ramsay.^ 

Others, while maintaining the general historical purpose of 
the book, explained its pecuUar character by appealing to the 
needs of Theophilus, which though unknown to us were known 
to the author and led him to omit many things already familiar, 
and to emphasise others because of particular interest to his 

In 1836 a new epoch in the criticism of Acts was opened by Schrader 
the revival of the suggestion made nearly forty years before p°q g^^u 
by Griesbach and Paulus that the purpose of the Acts was to 
defend Paul and Paulinism against the Judaisers. The sugges- 
tion was taken up both by Karl Schrader and by Ferdinand 
Christian Baur, the great Tiibingen critic. 

Up to this time, the omissions and repetitions in the book 
of Acts were chiefly responsible for the conviction that it was 
written with a special purpose ; but Schrader found the principal 
difficulty in the difference between the Paul of the Acts and the 
Paul of the Epistles, thus putting the question, as Baur did too, 
upon a different level altogether. 

In his work on the Apostle Paul ^ Schrader gave a translation schrader'i 
of the book of Acts, with brief comments in which he called ^ '^^^" 
attention not only to the contrast between the Paul of Acts 
and the Paul of the Epistles, but also to the author's emphasis 
upon Paul's dependence on the older apostles, to the e\'ident 
parallelism in the recorded miracles of Peter and Paul, to the 
representation of the Roman authorities as imiformly friendly 
to the latter, and finally, to the omission of any account of his 

" The close of the Acts," Schrader says, " is surprising. Why 

1 Op. cil. p. 279. - Die Aposielgeschichte, 1891, p. 318. 

* SI. Paul the Traveller and the Roman Citizen, 1895, p. 309. 

* Cf. Hug's Introduction to the New Testament, English translation, Andover, 
1S36, p. 493. 

* Der Apostel Paulus, 1830, Theil v. 


does it not relate the death of the Apostle for Christ ? The 
author could not have been ignorant of the terrible fate of the 
Christians in Rome, their cruel execution as incendiaries by 
Nero, nor could it have seemed unimportant to him. But 
in an ecclesiastical book intended to defend the Christians 
against the Jews, the heathen and the government, in a book 
which was to be read in public, it was out of place to conclude 
the experiences of the Apostle with the horrible persecution of 
Nero. This would have been to nullify all that had been said 
in Christianity's behalf about the conduct of the government 
toward the Christians, and to remind their enemies, who were to 
learn from the book how completely the government had every- 
where recognised the innocence of the Christians (for the book 
was written long after the death of the Apostle), that though they 
had relied upon the support of the Emperor, they had been put 
to death by him as the most abandoned criminals. Moreover, 
it would not have been possible to represent the Emperor in 
connection with the prosecution as other than a most terrible 
monster ; and this again in a book designed for public use in 
the Church would have been very dangerous. The Christians 
could have been accused of embittering their people against 
the government, of despising it in the person of the Emperor, 
and of being bad subjects, whereas according to 1 Tim. ii. 1-2 
they were to appear as loyal subjects, offering prayers for the 
government, that they might have peace. Such considerations 
as these might induce the author of Acts, who sought always 
to avoid everything offensive, to bring his history to a close 
not with the obnoxious Neronian persecution but with the 
edifying assurance that Paul in his imprisonment taught for 
two whole years free and unhindered." ^ 
F. c. Baur's Schradcr concluded that the purpose of the author of Acts 
was controllingly apologetic and that the historical trustworthi- 
ness of the book was seriously affected thereby. 

In the same year Baur published an essay in which he main- 
1 Op. cit. p. 573 f. 


tained ^ that the book of Acts was written by a Paulinist to defend 
the Apostle's mission to the Gentiles against the attacks of Jewish 
Christians by showing that he had everywhere preached first 
to the Jews and had turned to the Gentiles only after the former 
had rejected his gospel, so that it was the Jews themselves who 
were responsible for the existence of a Gentile Christianity. 
Baur was led to discuss the attitude of the author of Acts in this 
particular essay on the Epistle to the Romans because of the 
account of the situation in Rome given in Acts xxviii. 17 ff., 
which seemed to him a particularly convincing example of the 
apologetic course of the author of Acts. 

In 1838, in an article on the origin of the Episcopate, ^ which The 
also appeared the same year in a separate volume, Baur set forth theo^^° 
the well-loiown Tiibingen construction of early Christian history 
and assigned the book of Acts its place in the group of irenic 
writings whose purpose was the reconciliation of the two hostile 
parties, the Jewish Christians and the Paulinists. In this 
article he summed up the aim of Acts in the following words : 
" Indeed even the Acts of the Apostles, whatever we may think 
of its historical trustworthiness, is in its controlling idea and 
innermost character the apologetic attempt of a Paulinist to 
initiate and promote the mutual friendliness and union of the 
two opposing parties by making Paul appear as Petrine and 
Peter as Pauhne as possible, by throwing a veil over differences 
which, beyond doubt, according to Paul's categorical declaration 
in the Epistle to the Galatians actually existed between the two 
apostles, and by leading the Gentile Christians to forget their 
hostility to Judaism, and the Jewish Christians their hostility 
to heathenism, in their common enmity to the unbelieving Jews 
who had made Paul the constant object of their implacable 

^ " Ubcr Zweck und ^'e^anlassung des Roiiierbriefs und die damit zusam- 
menhangeiidon Verlialtnisse der romischen Gemeinde," Tiibinger Zcitschrifl filr 
Theologie, 1836, Heft 3, p. 100 ff. 

* " Uber don Ursprung des Episcopats," Tiibinger Zeitschrift filr Theologie 
for 1838, Heft 3, p. 142 ff. 

VOL. II 2 B 


Schnecken- Moved by the attacks of Schrader and Baur upon the 
"^^^"^ trustworthiness of Acts, Schneckenburger of Berne took up 
the study of the purpose of the book, and in 1841 pub- 
lished the first critical and detailed discussion of the matter.^ 
Schneckenburger agreed that the purpose of the author of Acts 
was primarily apologetic, not historical — to defend the Apostle 
against the attacks of Judaisers and to remove as far as possible 
the Jewish Christian prejudice against him, — but he maintained 
that there had been no serious departure from historic fact. 

Following Schrader in recognising the wide difference between 
the Paul of the Epistles and the Paul of Acts, he found the 
explanation in Luke's desire to make Paul appear in a favourable 
light to Christians of Jewish birth. Similarly, so he maintained, 
in reply to the Judaisers' claim of superiority for Peter, Luke 
emphasised Paul's divine call to apostleship, dwelt upon his 
heavenly visions, magnified his exploits, minimised the unhappy 
incidents of his career, and drew a detailed parallel between his 
achievements and Peter's. Still further, Schneckenburger points 
out, according to the Acts Paul uniformly keeps the Jewish law 
with meticulous care, is scrupulous in observing the Jewish feasts, 
circumcises Timothy, works constantly in harmony with the 
older apostles upon the occasion of his first visit to Jerusalem, 
after his conversion wishes to remain there and preach to the 
Jews, but is compelled by divine command to go to the Gentiles, 
and throughout his missionary career always addresses the 
Jews first and turns to the Gentiles only when the former have 
rejected the gospel. His recorded discourses are such as might 
have been uttered by any Jewish believer in Jesus' Messiahship 
and contain no trace of the gospel of freedom from law, 
which bulks so large in Paul's Epistles. Titus, his uncircum- 
cised Gentile companion, is not mentioned nor is his work in 
Galatia, where he deviated from his ordinary custom and 
preached only to the Gentiles. The Antiochian quarrel referred 
to in Galatians ii. is omitted, as is also all reference to the great 

^ Vber den Zweck der Apostelgeschichfe, 1841. 


collection, and the book ends with an account of an interview 
with the Jews in Rome held in response to Paul's own request. 
Indeed the whole work is brought to a climax with the final 
rejection of Christianity by the Jews and Paul's declaration, 
"Be it known unto you, therefore, that this salvation of God 
is sent unto the Gentiles ; they will listen." 

The interest that dictated Luke's account of Paul's work 
appears also in the first part of Acts when he is dealing with the 
Church of Jerusalem and the older apostles. The universalism 
of the gospel is based on Christ's own command in i. 8, and is 
symbolised at Pentecost. The high standing of Barnabas in 
the Christian community at Jerusalem is emphasised because 
of his subsequent relation to Paul and his help in forwarding 
Paul's missionary work. Peter's agency in the conversion of 
Cornelius is given great prominence. He appears as Paul's 
predecessor in the apostolate to the heathen. He also speaks 
of Jews and Gentiles as equal in God's sight and declares that 
the law does not justify, but faith alone. In fact, there is more 
Paulinism in the first half of the book than in the second, more 
in the mouths of the early disciples than in Paul's own mouth. 

As already said, though Schneckenburger held that the 
book of Acts was written with an apologetic not an historical 
purpose, he maintained its substantial accuracy throughout. 
Luke did not invent or falsify his facts as Schrader and Baur 
claimed, but simply selected his material in such a way as to 
produce the desired impression. Had he been inventing freely, 
of course he could have made a more complete and consistent 
defence of Paul, but as it was he felt himself bound by the facts. 

Schneckenburger concluded that the work was written by 
Paul's companion Luke after the death of the Apostle, but before 
the destruction of Jerusalem, and he explained its limited circu- 
lation by the fact that it was meant primarily not for the Church 
at large and not for the Gentile wing of the Church, but for the 
Jemsh Christians of Rome, who opposed the conversion of the 
Gentiles not only because of their national exclusiveness, but also 


because of their fear of the Roman Government which made 
Jewish propaganda a crime.^ 
F.c. Baur'a Schneckcnburger made a very telling case for his theory, 
Schaecken- ^nd no onc could thcnccforth write upon the purpose of the 
burger. ^^^.g ^i^}jQ^^ taking accouut of his argument. Baur at once 
recognised its importance, and in his review of Schneckenburger's 
book 2 he appealed to it in support of his own view of the purpose 
of Acts, which differed very materially from Schneckenburger's. 
The latter held to the Lucan authorship and trustworthiness of 
Acts, but his theory of the book's purpose, as Baur abundantly 
shows, made against both. "It is impossible," so Baur says, 
" for the author's investigations to stop where he has left them, 
and one must either turn back or go beyond the point fixed by 
the author to further studies concerning the historical character 
of the book as a whole." ^ 

An admirable summary of Baur's own view is given in his 
volume on Paul the Apostle which appeared a few years later.^ 
The author of Acts, he says, cannot have been identical with 
Luke, the friend and companion of the Apostle, " for a writer 
so large a part of whose account has so Httle the character of 
historical objectivity, and who sets the events in such a per- 
spective as to show a definite purpose and tendency, must have 
been some distance from the facts he records, and can have 
written only under conditions dominated by interests other 
than those that can be assumed for the time of the Apostle. 
This is a necessary conclusion from our discussion, but on the 
other hand, we must have a care not to draw from the particular 
aim which controlled the author of a later day too unfavourable 
a judgment of the historical trustworthiness of the Acts as a 
whole, for the apologetic interest of the author does not whoUy 

^ Schaeckenburger argued further for the trustworthiness of Acts and his 
own interpretation of its purpose in certain notes published after his death 
in the Theologische Sludien tmd Kritiken, 1855, p. 498 f., under the title " Bei- 
trage zur Erklarung und Kritik der Apostelgeschichte." 

2 Jahrbucher filr tuissenschaftliche Kritik, March 1841 (Nos. 46-48). 

3 Op. cit. No. 48, p. 381. 

4 Der Apostel Paulus, 1845, p. 12 £f. 


exclude the truth, but only limits and modifies it. Unhistorical 
as its presentation appears at many points where we can test 
it by Paul's own testimony, it yet agrees in many respects with 
the history of the times as we know it from other trustworthy 
witnesses. It therefore remains — even though the common 
opinion as to its author, its purpose, and its date cannot be 
accepted — a most important source for the history of the apostolic 
age, but at the same time a source from which a genuinely histori- 
cal picture of the persons and events it describes can be gained 
only after strict historical criticism." 

According to Baur, while Luke cannot have been the author 
of Acts, some of the material may have come from him, and in 
any case, as the use of the pronoun ' we ' shows, he wished to 
be taken for Luke, the well-known friend and companion of the 

Baur was followed in his interpretation of the purpose of Albert 
Acts by Albert Schwegler, another member of the Tiibingen ^^^^'^s^'^'"- 
School,- but Schwegler's judgment of the historicity of the book 
was even more severe than Baur's. The Acts of the Apostles, 
he says, " is an apology for the Apostle to the Gentiles and his 
apostolic work among the heathen, a proposal of peace and an 
attempt at reconciliation in the form of a history — in the form 
of a history, for even though the first part at any rate, and prob- 
ably the second as well, are based on older sources and narratives, 
when we remove the improbable, the impossible, the demonstrably 
unhistorical, or that which is bound up with it, and especially 
the freely composed speeches and the countless repetitions, 
there is extraordinarily little historical reality left. The complete 
historical trustworthiness of the Acts is impugned even by its 
numerous purposeful omissions and silences. He who inten- 
tionally passes over important events in order to give the matter 
he deals with another aspect, and intentionally omits character- 
istic features of a portrait in order to give it a different look, 

^ Tlii:^ had been already suggested by Sclirader, op. cit. pp. 549, 550, 570. 
^ Das nachapostolische Zeitalter, 184G. 


cannot be regarded as too upright and conscientious to permit 
himself positive distortions and unhistorical inventions when 
it is to his interest to do so. At any rate, we can say this much 
with certainty concerning our author, that in using and shaping 
the material given him by tradition, he has proceeded in a most 
arbitrary and sovereign way. In this connection we have already 
referred to the Clementine Homilies as affording in many respects 
a striking parallel. Taking it as a whole, the book of Acts has 
the worth of an historical document only for the time, the 
circumstances and the situation which gave it birth." ^ 

Accordmg to Schwegler, Acts was written in the second 
century somewhere between the persecution of Trajan and the 
rise of Marcionism.^ At the time of its composition Jewish 
Christianity was still dominant and Jewish Christians were still 
in the majority. Gradually with the multiplication of Gentile 
Christians, synchronising with the rise of Gnosticism, conditions 
changed and the situation which accounted for the book of Acts 
was outgrown. 
Eduard In 1848, Still another member of the Tiibingen School, Eduard 

^ ^^' Zeller, son-in-law of Baur and later well known as a historian 
of philosophy, took a hand in the discussion with an important 
series of articles in the Theologische Jahrbilcher (1848-1851),^ 
which were revised and published in book form in 1854, under 
the title Die Apostelgeschichte nach ihrem Inhalt und Ursprung 
kriiisch untersucht^ Zeller's book is the most elaborate critique 

1 Op. cit. vol. ii. p. 73 B. 

^ Schwegler calls attention to the similarity between the Acts and Justin 
Martyr's Dialogue xvltli Trypho, chap. 47, in which the same compromise appears, 
the recognition, namely, of a circumcised Jewish Christianity in return for the 
recognition of an uncircumcised Gentile Christianity. " Evidently the situation 
is essentially the same as in the Acts ; the proposition is still that each party 
shall confine its demands to its own members. Nevertheless, Justin's Dialogue 
indicates that the Gentile party has in the meantime grown stronger, for it 
concedes what the Acts is still asking for " (ii. p. 118). 

* An article entitled " Die alteste Uberlieferung liber die Schriften des 
Lukas " in the Jahrbirher for 1848 was followed in 1849-1851 by a number of 
articles under the title " Die Apostelgeschichte, ihre Komposition und ihre 

* English translation by Joseph Dare, in two volumes, 1875-6. 


of the Acts that has appeared, and his statement of the 
purpose of the work, while agreeing essentially with Schwegler's, 
is more careful and discriminating and may be taken as the 
classic presentation of the Tubingen theory of early Christian 
history as appHed to Acts. Like Baur and Schwegler, Zeller 
commends Schneckenburger for having proved beyond all doubt 
the apologetic character of Acts, but criticises him for making 
too much of its historic trustworthiness. Zeller himself does not 
doubt its accuracy, so he says, because of its apologetic character, 
but having discovered its untrustworthiness from a detailed 
study of its contents, he seeks an explanation and finds it in 
the apologetic purpose which controlled its composition. This 
purpose he defines ^ as the attempt to reconcile Jewish Christians 
and Paulinists by justifying the existence of Paulinism and at 
the same time sacrificing its extreme claims for the sake of peace. 
Two points, he says, the author will not sacrifice — the apostolic 
authority of Paul and the universalism of the gospel. His 
chief aim is to convince Jewish Christians that a free Gentile 
Christianity is legitimate. This, of course, implies that its 
legitimacy was denied, and the book was meant chiefly for those 
who denied it, to convince them by appealing to history and to 
conciliate them by conceding the legitimacy of their own Jewish 
form of Christianity. The book of Acts was thus a mediating 
work intended not only for Judaisers, but also for Paulinists, 
for mediation was vain unless the latter accepted the compromise 
as well as the former. To quote Zeller's own summary of his 
view : " Accordingly what our author wishes to give is such a 
delineation of the Apostle Paul in his relation to the Church of 
Jerusalem and to the Jewish Christian apostles as shall not only 
justify the person of the Apostle against the accusations and pre- 
judices of the Judaists, but shall also bring about an understand- 
ing in reference to Pauline Christianity. With this end, not 
only are Paul and his cause commended to the Jewish Christians, 
but on the Pauline side an interpretation of Christianity and a 

' Die Apostelgcdchichtc nach ihreni Inlutll und Ursj»-ung kritisch iintersttcht. 
pp. 316 ff. 



of the 

conception of the character and doctrine of Paul are promulgated 
of a sort to fit Paulinism for union with Jewish Christianity by 
the removal or concealment of its most ofEensive features. The 
work is the peace proposal of a Paulinist who wishes to purchase 
the recognition of Gentile Christianity from Jewish Christians 
by concessions to Judaism and in this sense desires to influence 
both parties." ^ 

In addition to the author's main purpose of reconciling the 
Jewish Christian and Pauline parties, Zeller thinks he also 
desired to conciliate the Roman Government and prove the 
harmlessness of Christianity from a poUtical point of view 
by showing that Paul was imiformly acquitted whenever he 
appeared before the Roman authorities.^ This points to a time 
when the Roman Government was hostile to Christianity, say 
between 110 and 130, and suggests that the work was intended 
primarily for the Church at Rome, a suggestion confirmed by 
other arguments already urged by Schneckenburger.^ The Acts, 
in fact, according to Zeller, represents Paul as the founder of the 
Roman Church and his work in Rome as the climax of his career. 

Baur, Schwegler, and Zeller were followed more or less closely 
by Hausrath,* Samuel Davidson,^ Hilgenfeld,^ W. R. Cassels,' 
Scholten,^ Holtzmann,^ Havet,^° Volkmar,i^ and many others. 

1 Op. cit. p. 363. 

- Cf. Schneckenburger, p. 246. For an extreme statement of the theory 
that Acts was written chiefly or exclusively with a political apologetic purpose, 
see the articles by the Roman Catholic Aberle in the Theologische Qitartalschrift 
for 1855, p. 173 &., and 1863, p. 84 ff. According to Aberle, the book was written 
while Paul was still in prison and was intended for use at his trial. Cf. also 
B. Sehafer's " Studien zur Apostelgeschichte " in the same periodical, 1877, 
p. 281 ff., 377 ff. 3 Cf. also Frisch, op. cit. p. 55 ff. 

* Cf. Neutestamejitliche Zeitgeschichte, 1868, vol. iv. p. 236 ff. 

^ A7i Introduction to the Study of the New Testament, 1868, vol. ii. i^. 275 ff. 
•* Cf. Zeitschrift fur wissenschaftliche Theologie, 1871-1872, and Einleitimg 
in das Neue Testament, 1875, p. 574 ff. 

' Supernatural Religion, 1874, vol. iii. part 1. 

* Das paiclinische Evangelium, German translation from the Dutch, 1881, 
p. 254 ff. 

" Zeitschrift fiir wissenschaftliche Theologie, 1882-1883. In his Hand- 
kommentar zum Neuen Testament (1889) Holtzmann's view is considerably 
modified. ^^ Le Christianisme et ses origines, 1884, vol. iv. chap. 4. 

^* Paiilus von Damascus bis zum Galaferbrief, 1887, p. 22 ff. 


On the other hand, Wittichen^ maintained that Acts was vvittichen. 
written by a Jewish Christian with the aim of defending the 
historic rights of Jewish Christianity in the face of the growing 
preponderance of Gentiles within the Church. " Thus the Third 
Gospel, together with the Acts of the Apostles, exhibits all the 
characteristic features of the Jewish Christianity which proceeded 
from the original apostles in the later phase of its development 
delineated above. It is distinguished, however, from the writings 
there described, as for instance from the Gospel of Matthew, by 
the fact that the Jewish type is even more marked in it than in 
them." 2 This view found, so far as I am aware, no acceptance. 

Among those who supported the traditional position and Upholders 
defended the trustworthiness of Acts over against the Tiibingen traditional 
critics and their followers were Neander,^ Lechler,* Thiersch,^ ^'^^• 
Baumgarten,^ Lange,'' Lekebusch,^ and many others. All of them 
maintained for the most part the traditional theory of Acts, 
including the authorship of Luke, and after considering in greater 
or less detail the arguments of the Tubingen School dismissed 
them as unsound. Lekebusch's discussion is the most careful 
and thorough of them all, and may be taken as the best and most 
moderate presentation of the conservative position. He devotes 
some two hundred pages, or nearly half his book, to the question 
of the purpose of Acts, summarising his conclusion in the following 
words : " The Acts is not a Tendenzschrift, either apologetic or 
conciliatory, still less Judaistic, but a purely historical work, 
as it claims to be and as, according to the admission even of the 

1 Jahrbikher fur deutsche Theologie, 186G, " tJber den historischen Charaktcr 
cler synoptischen Evangelieii," p. 427 ff. 

- Op. cit. p. 480. 

^ Geschichle der PJlanzung und Leitung der chrisllichen Kirche durch die 
Apostel, fourth edition, 1847. 

* Das apostolische und das nachapostolische Zeitalter, 1851. 

* Die Kirche im apostolischeii Zeitalter, 1852. Thiersch recognised the 
conciliatory aim of Acts, but denied that it had led to any distortion of 
the facts (p. 119 S). 

* Die Aposlelgeschichte, oder der Entwicklungsgang der Kirche von Jerusalem 
bis Rom, 1852. ' Das apostolische Zeitalter, 1853. 

* Die Composition und Entstehung der Apostelgeschichte, 1854. 


newer criticism, it appears to be at first sight. It sets forth 
in unbroken continuity and from the Pauline, universalistic, 
in a word, Christian point of view, the gradual development 
of the Church from its rise in Jerusalem to the moment when the 
great apostle reached Rome, the metropolis of heathenism. The 
Acts is not a partisan document." ^ " We are not disposed to 
insist that every story and every reference in Acts is historical 
because it appears in a canonical book. On the contrary, we 
admit the perfect right of criticism to test without prejudice 
the trustworthiness of every item and to declare this or that, 
as the case may be, unhistorical or mythical. But we cherish 
the firm conviction that all the exceptions which might rightly 
be taken to the contents of the work are by no means serious 
enough to disprove the author's claim to have been a companion 
of Paul." 2 
Rejection The Tlibiugen theory of the purpose of Acts was rejected 

Tiibingen ^^^^ ou altogether different grounds by Bruno Bauer.^ Bauer's 
view: (a) by critical work has been iustly condeixmed because of its extremely 

Bruno •> ./ j 

Bauer; subjcctive character and its sovereign disregard of historical 
facts, but his book on Acts, though it shares the faults of his 
other writings, and represents the Acts as a free composition 
quite devoid of any historical foundation, is very significant 
because it exposes the weakest point in the Tiibingen theory, the 
notion that the conflict between Judaisers and Paulinists con- 
tinued long after Paul's death and supplied the occasion for the 
composition of the Acts and other irenic writings. According 
to Bauer, at the time the Acts was written, the battle between 
Judaisers and Paulinists was over and the author knew nothing 
about it and had no understanding of it. In the days when the 
strife was still going on, a work like the Acts would have been 
quite impossible. " When the Acts was written," Bauer says, 
" the tension of parties had collapsed, the opposition was veiled, 

1 Op. cit. p. 374. 2 Op. cit. p. 376. 

* Die Apostelgeschichte, eine Ausgleichung des Paulinisnms and des Juden- 
thums innerhalb dei- christlichen Kirche, 1850. 


tlie difference was obliterated and peace had already been con- 
cluded. The Acts is not a proposal of peace, but the expression 
and consummation of peace and toleration." ^ 

Bauer's work is also significant because of its interpreta- 
tion of Catholicism, not as a compromise between Jewish and 
Gentile Christianity, but as a development of the conservative 
and legal, or as he calls it, the Jewish spirit in the early Church. 
" The Acts first brought Judaism to recognition and control 
within the Church. It helped to fasten the chains that bound 
the Church to the Jewish world, and the Church clung to the 
Acts and recognised it as the canonical expression of its own 
consciousness because it wished this bond wdth Judaism and 
this Jewish marriage with the past and with heaven. The author 
of Acts gave to the Judaism which had neutralised the original 
differences and put an end to the conflict between them, form, 
flesh, and blood, and the confirmation of history. The Judaism 
which was represented in the Acts and was reconciled to Pauhn- 
ism was naturally not historic Judaism. . . . Nor Vi-as it the 
Jewish Christianity about which recent scholars have so much to 
say. It did not oppose the freedom of the Gentile Christians, 
and had no thought of imposing upon them the yoke of the law. 
On the contrary, where the Judaism of which we are speaking 
prevailed, the freedom of Gentile Christians and the universality 
of the Church vrere taken for indisputable truth, and the earlier 
hostility between Gentile and Jewish Christians was vanishing. 
The Judaism of which we speak was rather a power that has 
asserted its supremacy, even though in changing forms, down 
to our own time. . . . We mean by Judaism the conservative, 
conciliatory, anti-revolutionary spirit which, at the same time, 
conserves the gains of the revolution, and we give it this name 
because it has received its classical expression in the Old Testa- 
ment, in its inability to see historic differences, in the Jewish 
transformation of the historical product of a later time into a 
divinely given tradition, in brief in Jewish theism which condemns 

^ Op. cit. p. 121. 


the historical creator to impotence and hands over to heaven the 
prerogative of revelation. Through the original heritage of the 
Old Testament received by the new commmiity this Judaism 
retained its influence in the Church and won for itself a still 
larger territory," ^ 

The French scholar Renan, in his work on The Apostles, 
published in 1866, also rejected the Tubingen theory of the 
purpose of Acts. At the same time he recognised that the book 
was far from trustworthy, and that its author, though a com- 
panion of Paul, knew very little about the real facts of the period 
he was describing and wrote with a religious rather than a 
historical purpose. " The Acts, in a word, is a dogmatic history, 
written to support the orthodox doctrines of the time or to 
inculcate the ideas which most appealed to the piety of the author. 
Let us add that it could not have been otherwise. We know 
the origin of any religion from the accounts of its believers alone. 
It is only the sceptic who writes od narrandum." ^ " One of 
the characteristics of Acts which proves that the author was 
less concerned to present the historic facts or to satisfy the 
demands of logic than to edify pious readers is this circumstance, 
that the question of admitting the uncircumcised is settled over 
and over again without ever being settled. First by the baptism 
of the eunuch of Candace, then by the baptism of the centurion 
Cornelius, both divinely commanded, then by the foundation 
of the Church at Antioch, then by the pretended council at 
Jerusalem ; in spite of which, in the last pages of the book, the 
question remains still unsettled." ^ 

The theory of the purpose of Acts maintained by Baur, 
Schwegler, and Zeller was a part of the Tiibingen School's general 
theory of the development of early Christianity. With the 
breakdown of the latter the interpretation of Acts as a docu- 
ment of the mediating party in the Church of the second century 
also broke down, and was ere long generally abandoned. Already 

^ Op. cit. p. 122 f. - Les Apotres, p. xxix. 

^ Ibid. p. xxxviii. 


in 1870, in the fourth edition of De Wette's Acts, Overbeck 
rejected the Tiibingen view, and with the appearance of his 
commentary a new period opened in the criticism of Acts. 
Overbeck's work was far and away the most important discussion 
of the subject that had appeared since Zeller's, and it still remains 
in many respects the best commentary we have.^ Overbeck 
was as drastic in his criticism as either Baur or Zeller, to both 
of whom he owed much, and he recognised as they did, that the 
purpose of Acts was apologetic rather than historical, but he 
interpreted its place and its significance in an entirely different 
way. It was not written, he maintained, to conciliate the 
Jewish Christians and promote harmony between the two wings 
of the Church. When it appeared there was no need of such 
an effort, for the conflict between Judaisers and Paulinists was 
altogether a thing of the past, and Gentile Christianity was 
alone in control. 

" From this it is evident that the Acts cannot be understood 
as a document standing between the primitive Christian parties, 
original apostolic Jewish Christianity, and Pauline Gentile 
Christianity. Its Gentile Christianity, to be sure, is not that 
of Paul. But still less is its Judaism that of the original apostles 
and to be explained so far as it is Jewish from the desire to 
put itself at the view-point of the original and genuine Jewish 
Christianity. Rather the Jewish element in the Acts must have 
been already a component part of the Gentile Christianity which 
the book itself represents. 

" The book is not to be interpreted as a proposal of peace 
between the primitive Christian parties, but the attempt of a 
Gentile Christianity already largely influenced by primitive 
Christian Judaism to explain its own past, particularly its own 
origin and its first founder Paul. It is true that Acts has 
abandoned the essential features of Paulinism with the single 
exception of universalism. But it has not done this as a 

^ An English translation of Overbeck's Introduction is given in the first 
volume of the English edition of Zeller's work mentioned on p. 374 above. 


concession to a party outside its own circle, but because it shares 
the interpretation of Paul which, as a result of Judaistic 
influences at work from the beginning and of the natural in- 
ability of Gentile Christianity to comprehend and hold fast to 
the problems of the original Paulinism, spread among Gentile 
Christians and finally controlled the old Catholic Church as a 
whole." 1 

Overbeck recognised also the political motive already pointed 
out by Schneckenburger, Zeller, and others, and contended 
that because of it the Book of Acts concluded not with the death 
of Paul but with the kindly treatment accorded him and the 
large measure of freedom granted him during his two years in 

Still further, Overbeck agreed with Baur, Schwegler, and 

Zeller in regarding the Acts as untrustworthy in considerable 

part. " An historical book which subjects its material to so 

artificial and arbitrary a scheme as the Acts and modifies it so 

strongly in the interest of its special aim and its subjective 

point of view, and which treats its sources so freely, is in 

general untrustworthy, and must prove its trustworthiness 

for each single case." ^ At the same time he judged it more 

favourably than the Tubingen critics, and explained its 

inaccuracies as due often to mere lack of knowledge rather 

than deliberate purpose.^ The author wrote in the second 

century, so long after the events recorded, that he was largely 

ignorant of the situation and had lost all sense of the conflicts 

and controlling interests of the period which he was describing.* 

Pfleiderer. With Overbcck's work may be compared Pfleiderer's book on 

^ Op. cit. p. xxxi f. It is interesting to compare this with the view of Bruno 
Bauer described on p. 378 ff. above. 
- Op. cit. p. lix. 

* Similarly Weizsacker accounts for the frequent untrustworthiness of Acts 
partly by the author's purpose, partly by his lack of knowledge [Das aposto- 
lische Zeitalter, 1SS6, p. 206 ff.). 

* Cf. Overbeck's article " Uber das Verhaltniss Justins des Martyrers zur 
Apostelgeschichte," in the Zeitschrift fur icissenschaftliche Theologie, 1872, 
p. 305 ff., for a further statement of his views concerning the place of Acts in 
the development of Gentile Christian thought. 


Paulinisni/ which is still more favourable to the Acts. " The 
analogy of the entire history of Paulinism speaks against rather 
than for the interpretation of Acts as a Tendenzschrift, which 
aims to purchase the recognition and friendship of the Jewish 
Christians by making concessions to them, and which sacrifices 
the historical Paul to this object. It is certainly much more 
likely that the author, speaking out of the consciousness of his 
own time, in which Paulinism was already a changed thing, 
interpreted the conditions of the apostolic age in good faith and 
understood and used his sources ingenuously on the assumption 
that the relation of Jewish and Gentile Christianity could not 
have been other in the days of primitive Christianity than it 
seemed in his own, a relation, namely, of mutual approximation 
and growing imderstanding and amity on the part of the saner 
elements in the two parties over against the extremists in both." ^ 

As Holtzmann remarks, " Where, according to the Tiibingen Hoitzmami. 
criticism, the author of Acts would not see, according to the 
newer interpretation, for the most part he could not see." ^ This 
marks the great difEerence between the critical school of the 
middle of the nineteenth century and that of a more recent 
day. While many of the detailed results reached by the earlier 
critics remain intact, their general attitude toward the Book 
of Acts has been almost miiversally abandoned. 

In this connection mention may be made of the radical Van 
Dutch school of Loman and Van Manen.'* They denied the 
genuineness of all the Pauline epistles and, while recognising 
the untrustworthiness of the Acts in many respects, they yet 
regarded it as a better source for a laiowledge of the history of 
the primitive Church than the epistles from which the Tubingen 
critics had drawn their principal arguments against it. Van 
Manen gives a summary of his position in the article on Paul 

^ Paulinismus, 1873. English translation in two volumes, 1877. 
- Op. cit. p. 497. 

^ Handkommentar zum Nenen Testament, vol. i. p. 308. 
* See Loman's " Quacstionos Paulinae " in the Theologisch Tijdschrift, 1882, 
1883, 1886 ; Steck, Der Galaterbrie.J, 1888 ; Van Manen, Pmdus, 1890. 


in the Encyclopaedia Biblica (1902). " The book bears in part 
a legendary - historical, in part an edifying and apologetic 
character. The writer's intention is to instruct Theophilus 
concerning the old Christian past as that presented itself to 
his own mind after repeated examination, to increase the regard 
and afiection of his readers for Christianity, and at the same 
time to set forth how from the first, although hated by the Jews, 
this religion met with encouragement on the part of the Romans. 

" Of a ' tendency ' in the strict sense of the word, as understood 
by the Tiibingen School, there is nothing to be seen. The book 
does not aim at reconciliation of conflicting parties, Petrinists 
and Paulinists, nor yet at the exaltation of Paul or at casting 
his Jewish adversaries into the shade, or at placing him on a 
level with Peter." " The spirit in which Luke set about his 
work is that of budding Catholicism " (§ 37). 

The prevailing state of critical opinion upon Acts in the last 
decade of the nineteenth century is well represented by Jiilicher.^ 
According to him Acts contains an ideal picture of the apostohc 
age, drawn in perfect good faith by a Christian who wished to 
show the power of God in the apostles, but who was too far 
from the period described to understand the situation fully and 
with sources too few and fragmentary to enable him to write 
a complete and satisfactory history. The book was written not 
as a defence of Paul and his apostleship, and not as the programme 
of a mediating party,^ and the author's inaccuracies and mis- 
representations, which have been attributed to set purpose, 
were due chiefly to ignorance. Acts contains both trustworthy 
and untrustworthy material, but only the speeches were the 
free invention of the author. " In the Acts the Gentile Church 
of the beginning of the second century has codified its best 
knowledge of the first period of its history." ^ 

^ Einleitung in das Neue Testament, 1894, p. 259 ff. 

^ " Paul is not Judaised and Peter Paulinised, but both are Lucanised, 
that is, Catholicised " (p. 263). 

" Op. cit. p. 270. Cf. also Clemen, Die ApostelgescliicTite im Lichteder neueren 
text; quellen- und historisch-kritischen Forschungen, 1905, p. 35 &., and Knopf in 
Die Schriften des Neuen Testaments, edited by J. Weiss and others, vol. i. p. 529. 


Up to this point only the history of opinion touching the Sources of 
purpose of Acts has been traced. To the investigation of this K>inigs- 
subject scholars were led by a desire to explain the book's many '"^°°- 
omissions, repetitions, and other peculiarities, but there were 
some who sought the explanation in the character of its sources. 
So far as I am aware, the first to suggest written sources for 
Acts was Bernhard Konigsmann, who published in 1798 a 
dissertation on the subject.^ Konigsmann based his assumption 
of written sources on the prologue of the Third Gospel and on 
the diversity of style (orationis varietas et inconstaniia) which 
marked the various parts of Acts. The author, he maintains, 
is to be distinguished from the writer of the ' we ' passages, 
for, as shown by the prologue, he was not himself an eye-witness 
of the events he records and did not wish to be taken for such. 
Beyond this K5nigsmann did not attempt to determine the 
nature or extent of the sources of Acts. His theory that the 
author of Acts made use of written sources was accepted by 
Bolten,^ Ziegler,^ Heinrichs,* Bertholdt,^ Kuinoel,^ and others '^ ; 
but the investigation of the question was first taken up seriously 

* De fontibus commentariorum sacrorum qui Lucae nomen praeferuni deque 
eorum consilio et aetate, Altonae, 1798. Reprinted in Pott's Sylloge Com- 
mentationum Theologicaruni, vol. iii., 1802, pp. 215-2.39. 

- In iiis Geschichte der Apostel von Lukas ubersetzt und mit Anmerkungen 
begleitet, 1799, p. viii ff. Bolten thinks that Luke used an Aramaic source or 

^ In an article, " tJbcr den Zweck, die Qucllon und die Interpolationen der 
Apostelgeschichte " in Gabler's Neuestes Tfieologisches Journal, vol. vii., 1801, 
p. 125 ff. Ziegler suggests the Acts of Peter, or the Preaching of Peter, and 
written accounts of the martyrdom of Stephen and the conversion of Paul as 
sources for the first part of Acts. 

* In his Acta Apostolorum, i. p. 19 ff. (in Koppe's Novum Testamentum 
Graece, vol. iii., 1809), Heinrichs suggests the Acts of Peter and other possible 
documents as sources. 

^ In his Einleitung in sdimntliche kanonische und apokryphische Schriften 
des Alien und Neuen Testaments, Theil iii., 1813, p. 1331 ff. 

" In his Commentarius in libros Novi Testamenti kistoricos, vol. iv., 1818, 
p. xii ff., Kuinoel by an error refers to Konigsmann under the name of Kurz- 
mann, and gives the date of his dissertation wrongly as 1794. 

' Eichhorn discussed the question in his Einleitung in das Neue Testament, 
1810, ii. § 149, but rejected tiie theory of written sources for Acts on the ground 
of unity of stjde and manner and uniformity in the use of the LXX. 

VOL. IT 2 C 



denies the 
author of 
the ' we ' 
wrote Acts. 

identity of 

by J. C. Riehm of Holland, who published in 1821 a book entitled 
De fontibus actuum apostolicorum, in which the subject was 
dealt with in considerable detail. According to Riehm in the 
second part of Acts the author made but a sparing use of 
written sources, being himself an eye-witness of many of the 
events and a personal friend of Paul and other actors in the 
history, but the first part of the book was largely based on 
written sources, many in number, and of a brief and fragmentary 

Riehm's identification of the author of the ' we ' passages 
with the author of the book as a whole (the traditional position) 
was disputed by Schleiermacher in his lectures on New Testa- 
ment Introduction, which were not published until 1845, long 
after his death, but influenced the course of New Testament 
criticism some time earlier.^ 

According to Schleiermacher, the author of the ' we ' 
passages (probably Timothy) is to be distinguished from the 
author of Acts, who made use not only of the travel notes of 
Timothy but also of other sources in various parts of his book, 
as is made evident by the frequent repetitions, inconsistencies, 
and contradictions in his narrative. 

This opinion was controverted by Mayerhoff,^ according 
to whom the identity of style between the ' we ' passages 
and other parts of Acts, which he shows in detail, makes it 
necessary to assume identity of authorship. But instead of 
ascribing the work to Luke, Mayerhofl ascribed it, together with 

^ Alieady in 1817 Schleiermacher published the first volume of a work on 
the \vritLa<Ts of Luke (tjber die Schriften des Lukas, ein kritischer Verstich), 
deaUnw with the Third Gospel and its sources, but the volume on Acts never 
appeared. Schleiermacher lectured on New Testament Introduction first in 
1829-1830, but he must have reached his view about the sources of Acts long 
before, probably as early as 1817, and it may have been due to his influence 
that his friend De Wette expressed the opinion that Acts was based in part 
upon written sources in his introduction to the New Testament, 1826, § 115. 
In § 113 De Wette says that the Acts may be regarded as "an attempt at a 
history of the Church which was imperfect and fragmentary, and remained 
unfinished for lack of information." 

2 Historisch-critische Einleitung in die petrinischen Schriften ; nebst einer 
Abhandlmig liber den Verfasser der Apostelgeschichte, 1835. 


the Third Gospel, to Timothy, to whom Schleiermacher had 
attributed the ' we ' passages alone. This novel conclusion 
was disputed both by Bleek and Uliich, the former in his review 
of Mayerhofi's work in the Studien und Kritiken for 1836, 
p. 1021 fE., the latter in an article in the same periodical 
for 1837, p. 369 ff., entitled " Kommt Lukas wirkhch in der 
Apostelgeschichte vor ? " ^ 

Like Schleiermacher, Bleek distinguished between Timothy, 
the author of the ' we ' passages, and Luke, the author of the 
book 'as a whole. Ulrich took the same position, referring to 
Schleiermacher's lectures of 1826 as furnishing the starting- 
point for his own discussion. 

With this may be compared the theory of Gfrorer,- who 
made Luke the author of the ' we ' passages, but the author 
of the book as a whole an anonymous -oT-iter of the latter part 
of the first century, an opinion which is still widespread. 

The question of the sources was taken up in a still more Schwan- 
thorough way by Eugen Schwanbeck, who published in 1847 
a detailed study of the subject,^ going beyond all his predecessors 
in his discrimination of documents. According to Schwanbeck 
the author of Acts made use of biographies of Peter and of 
Barnabas, a rhetorical account of the martyrdom of Stephen, 
and memoirs of Silas. These memoirs included the ' we ' 
passages, and underlay the second half of the book from the 
beginning of chapter xv. to the close. At the end of his volume 
Schwanbeck printed the Greek text of the memoirs of Silas, the 
biography of Barnabas, and the account of Stephen's death. 

^ Cf. also the same author's article, " Lukas kommt nicht in der Apostel- 
geschichte vor," in the Sludicn und Kritiken, 1840, p. 1003 ff. 

- In Die heilige Sage (the second part of his Geschichte des Urchristentums, 
1838), Abtheilung li. p. 245 ff. In I. pp. 383-452, Gfrorer discusses the com- 
position of Acts at great length, concluding that the two ])arts of the book 
(i.-xii. and xiii.-xxviii.) come from different hands, and that the first part was 
largely legendary and its written sources few and fragmentary, while the second 
part was in tlie main trustworthy, being written by a companion of Paul and 
an eye-witness of many of the events recorded. The book of Acts as we have 
it was subsequently put together by an unknown author of the late first century. 

* Vber die Quellen der Schriflen des Lukas. 





The discussion of the sources, generally neglected after 
Schwanbeck's work because of the growing absorption of scholars 
in the questions raised by the Tubingen School/ was taken 
up again in 1885 by Jacobsen,^ and in the next ten years there 
appeared in rapid succession a number of studies of the subject,^ 
which it is not necessary to discuss here, as they will be considered 
in the chapter on the sources. 

Ever since, all writers dealing with the Acts have felt them- 
selves compelled to devote a considerable amount of attention 
to its sources. So much was made during these years of source 
criticism that the question as to the purpose of the Acts was 
pushed more or less into the background. From this neglect 
it was rescued by Johannes Weiss in his brilliant and illuminating 
book on the Acts,* the most important discussion of the pur- 
pose of Acts since Overbeck's. Rejecting the idea that Acts 
was written with either an historical or a religious purpose, 
Weiss maintained that its controlling aim was to set Chris- 
tianity right with the Roman Government.^ " I can understand 

^ The question was also discussed at some length by Zeller {op. cit. p. 489 ff.), 
but with mainly negative results. Probably the author had some written 
documents including the notes or journal of an eye-witness, very likely Luke, 
from which he took the ' we ' passages. At any rate his work contains many 
things unrelated to his purpose, or inconsistent with it, which he must have 
taken either from written sources or from tradition. At the same time the 
nature and extent of his sources it is impossible to determine. He evidently 
re-wrote freely, changed things to suit himself, composed speeches and invented 
situations as need required ; and that he allowed the pronoun ' we ' to stand 
in certain passages was due to his desire to be taken for the eye-witness whose 
notes he used. ^ Die Quellen der Apostelgeschichfe. 

^ E.g. among others Wendt in Meyer's Handbuch zur ApostelgescJiichte, 
sixth edition, 1888, p. 13 ff. ; Van Manen, " Paulus I." {De Handelingen der 
Apostelen), 1890, p. 58 ff. ; Sorof, Die Entstehung der Apostelgeschichte, 1890 ; 
Spitta, Die Apostelgeschichte, ihre Quellen %nd deren geschichtlicher Wert, 1891 ; 
Feine, Ei7ie vorkanonische Uberlieferung des Lukas in Evangelium und Ap)ostcl- 
geschichte, 1891 ; Clemen in his Chronologie der paulinischen Briefe, 1893, 
p. 58 ff. ; Jiingst, Die Qiiellen der Apostelgeschichte, 1895 ; Hilgenfeld, Zeitschrift 
fur wissenschaftliche Theologie, 1895-96. Cf. also Krenkel's Josephus und 
Lucas, 1894, in which Luke's dependence on Josephus, both in the Third Gospel 
and in the Acts, is argued at length. 

* titer die Absicht imd den literarischen Charakter der Apostelgeschichte, 1897. 

^ Cf. pp. 177 ff. above. Among others who have seen in Acts a political 
apologetic purpose, are Weizsacker, Das apostolische Zeitalter, 1886, p. 456 ff. ; 


the Acts," he says, " only as an apology for the Christian religion 
addressed to the heathen and directed against the accusations 
of the Jews, which shows how it happened that Judaism 
had been supplanted in its world-mission by Christianity."^ 
These accusations were two — that Christians were apostates 
from Judaism, and that Christianity was dangerous to the State. 
The author imdertakes to meet them by giving an historical 
account of the way Christianity, though born in Judaism, 
broke loose from it and supplanted it in its mission to the Roman 
world. Instead of being apostates from Judaism Christians 
retained all that was good in the older system and represented 
the true Judaism which the Roman Government should take 
under its protection. " No Roman official should lend his 
support to the Jewish accusations. On the contrary, the State 
should give the new rehgion the protection afforded the old, 
whose place it has taken. To those circles among the Romans, 
on the other hand, which had hitherto been attracted to Judaism 
in the hope of finding salvation in it, there is now offered a new 
and more certain promise of salvation, the teaching, namely, of 
the resurrection of the dead, guaranteed in the person of the 
risen one." ^ 

The author of Acts made large use of written sources, including 
the ' we ' documents, and his account was often limited and 
determined thereby, and from them he frequently introduced 
matters because of their intrinsic interest which had no special 
bearing on his main thesis. He invented little, confining him- 
self for the most part to the given facts, but interpreting them 
as a rule in the hght of his own interest. 

Weiss's is the last elaborate discussion of the purpose of Hamack. 
Acts. More recently the question of date and authorship has 
been chiefly to the front. For this Harnack is in large part 

Pfieiderer, Das Urchristenthum, 1887, p. 611 ff. ; Ramsay, Paul the Traveller 
and the Roman Citizen, 1896, p. 305 ff. ; McGiffert, A History of Christianity 
in the Apostolic Age, 1897, p. 345 ff. ; and Knopf in Die Schriften des Neuen 
Testaments, edited by J. Weiss and others, vol. i., 1907, p. 530. 

1 Op. oil. p. 56. 2 Op. cit. p. 59. 


responsible. Practically all historical critics, including Harnack 
himself, long ago agreed that the traditional view that Acts 
was written by Luke, the companion of Paul, while the latter 
was still a prisoner at Rome, was unfounded. But the view 
has been revived by Harnack in a series of studies on the New 

Harnack gives his general opinion of the criticism of Acts 
in the following words : " No other New Testament book has 
had to suffer so much as the Acts, although in spite of its evident 
weaknesses it is in more than one respect the weightiest and 
best book in the New Testament. All the mistakes that have 
been made in New Testament criticism have come to a focus 
in the criticism of Acts. The book has had to suffer above all 
because Paul and Paulinism have been understood in a one- 
sided way and at the same time greatly overrated. It has 
had to suffer because an incorrect picture has been formed of 
the nature and relation of Jewish and Gentile Christianity. It 
has had to suffer because (extraordinary survival of an un- 
justifiable reverence for the apostolic !) the most extreme 
demands have been made upon a companion of Paul — a sure 
understanding of the apostle, congeniality, freedom from every 
independent tendency, absolute trustworthiness, and an infallible 
memory." - 

Lukas der Arzt is devoted to proving that the Third Gospel 
and Acts were written by Luke, the beloved physician, to whom 
they are ascribed by tradition. With this in view Harnack 
gives a considerable part of the volume to a demonstration 
of the identity of the author of the ' we ' sections with the 
author of the Acts as a whole. In support of it he urges sameness 
of interest, as for instance, their common interest in miracles 
and in the power and work of the Spirit, similarity in their 

^ Beitrdge zur Einhitimg in das Neue Testament ; vol. i. Liikas der Arzt, 
der Verfasser des dritten Evangeliums und der Apostclgeschichte, 1906 ; vol. iii. 
Die ApostelgescJiichte, 1908; vol. iv. Neue Untersuchungen zur Apostelgeschichte, 
1911, all translated into English. 

^ Lukas der Arzt, p. 87. 


portraits of Paul, and unity of style and vocabulary. The last 
point receives the greatest stress, and is regarded as in itself 
sufficient to prove identity of authorship. After a long dis- 
cussion of the author's use of sources in other parts of Acts, 
Harnack concludes : " For the question of the ' we ' passages 
nothing is to be gained from an investigation of the first half 
of Acts, for it leads at best to the assumption of one or more 
Aramaic sources. But that is quite irrelevant to the problem 
of the ' we ' sections. As nobody could think of an Aramaic 
source in this connection, all the observations concerning 
vocabulary, style, and contents remain in force, and make 
wholly impossible the separation of the ' we ' passages from 
the rest of the work." ^ 

Why one may not think of an Aramaic ' we ' document 
translated by the author, Harnack does not say. There would 
seem to be no adequate reason why there might not have been 
such a document, and on Harnack's own showing, if there were, 
his whole linguistic argument would break down. 

Another matter to which considerable attention is given Medical 
in this volume is the medical language of the author of the HoUrr 
third gospel and Acts. Following the Englishman, Hobart, 
who published a very uncritical book upon the subject in 1882, 
Harnack goes over the matter afresh and in considerable detail, 
and concludes with the words : " The proofs are more than 
sufficient. In my opinion, there can be no doubt that the third 
gospel and the Acts were written by a physician." ^ 

Harnack's Die ApostelgescJiichte has in general the same 
aim as Luhas der Arzt, to prove the Lucan authorship of Acts. 
It contains a careful study of the characteristics of the book and 
concludes that, in spite of its many inaccuracies and the author's 
frequent carelessness as an historian, it is on the whole a work 
of a very high character, and that there is nothing in it to dis- 
prove Lucan authorship, and much on the contrary to support 

^ Op. cit. p. 85. 

- Op. cit. p. 137. Compare the strong language of Zahn to the same effect 
{Einleiiung in das Neue Testament, vol. ii., 1899, p. 427). 


it. The main purpose of the Acts, Harnack thinks, was to 
show the power of the Spirit as exhibited in the work of the 
Apostles and in the spread of Christianity. He concedes that 
the defence of Paul against Jewish accusations was a secondary- 
aim, but denies that the author had any political apologetic 
motive, though he had admitted such a motive in Lukas der Arzt 
(p. 96).^ He also thinks it probable that for the first half of his 
book the author had written sources, but not for the second half. 
Harnack's last volume {Neue Untersuchungen zur Apostel- 
geschichte), continues the stylistic argument for the identity 
of the author of the ' we ' passages with the author of Acts, 
defends Luke's picture of Paul's attitude toward Judaism as 
contrasted with that contained in Paul's own epistles, and then 
goes on to prove that Acts was written before the apostle's 
death while he was still a prisoner in Rome. The argument is 
brief and all too hasty. All the reasons for a post-Pauline 
date, some of which Harnack himself had reproduced in the 
earUer volumes, are dismissed without a word. In favour of 
the early date he urges the author's omission of a reference 
to Paul's death ; ^ his silence concerning the destruction of 
Jerusalem and the events leading up to it ; his failure to make 
use of Paul's Epistles ; his quotation in xx. 25 of Paul's prophecy 
that the Ephesian elders would not see his face again (a prophecy 
falsified, according to Harnack, by Paul's journey to the East 
after his release from his first Roman imprisonment !) ; and, 
finally, a number of primitive traits exhibited in the Acts, in 
reference to which it may be said that, if they prove anything 
beyond the use of primitive sources, most of them prove too 
much, for they make the author of Acts more primitive than 
Paul, and hence, on Harnack's own principles, require a pre- 
Pauline date for the book.^ 

^ Compare vol. iv. p. 18 note, where he says : " The long and in part identical 
speeches of the last quarter of the book must be due to some purpose of the 
author which we cannot satisfactorily fathom." 

^ Cf. vol. iv. p. 66 S., with what he says on the other side in vol. iii. p. 48 ff. 

3 E.g. a, b, d, e, f, p. 72 ff. 


The early date for Acts requires an early date for the Gospel 
of Luke and a still earlier date for Mark, and Harnack accord- 
ingly discusses the origin of these Gospels, reaching the conclusion 
with surprising ease, considering the general consensus of opinion 
to the contrary, that there is nothing to prevent the opinion 
that Luke was written in the early sixties and Mark in the 
fifties. In all this discussion of the date of Acts Harnack says 
nothing of the difl&culties with which his view is beset because 
of the inaccuracies of the book and its lack of knowledge of 
many things one might expect a disciple of Paul to be familiar 
with. These difficulties, which make it impossible, according 
to most critics, to think the author a personal companion of 
Paul, are met in Harnack's first and second volimaes by the 
retort that we must not expect too much of a disciple of Paul 
writing long after the events described (between 78 and 93, 
according to volume i. p. 18 ; about 80, according to volume v. 
p. 108). But when the book is pushed back into the lifetime 
of Paul and is supposed to have been written while Luke was 
with him in Rome, the difficulties are multiplied many fold. 
Of this Harnack takes no account whatever, though it is really 
the crux of the whole situation.^ It can hardly be imagined 
that Harnack's treatment of the subject can have any lasting 
effect upon the course of thought touching the date of the book 
of Acts and the Synoptic Gospels in spite of the great weight 
that inevitably attaches to his opinions. 

Harnack's volumes have been hailed by many conservative Hamacks 
scholars as a confession of defeat on the part of New Testament to Luke, 
criticism and an evidence of the bankruptcy of the critical 
method. This, of course, they were not intended to be, and 
it must be recognised that in spite of his acceptance of tradi- 
tional positions touching date and authorship and his rehabilita- 
tion of the trustworthiness of Acts at many points where its 
accuracy has been impugned by the unanimous voice of the 
critical school, he is yet far from according it his complete 
' As examples of Harnack's treatment of tliis matter, cf. pp. 21 ff., 2.'] ff., 28. 


confidence. He ranks it as an historical source higher than 
many scholars would venture to do, but he is aware of its limita- 
tions and does not hesitate to question its facts. One who 
can speak of the author in the following terms is still far from 
sharing the traditional opinion touching the infallibility of 
his work : " Luke is an author who writes smoothly, but as 
soon as we examine him more closely we find him as a narrator 
more careless than almost any other New Testament writer. 
Like a genuine Greek, he pays close attention to his style and 
observes all the rules. He must be recognised in fact as a 
literary artist, but when it comes to content he proceeds where 
he was not himself an eye-witness, in a most negligent fashion, 
chapter after chapter, and often confuses things completely. 
This is true both of the Gospel and the Acts." ^ 
Supporters Hamack's conclusions have naturally attracted wide atten- 
opponents tion. He has f omid supporters for the theses common to his 
ofHarnack. Qj.^j^ g^^^ sccoud volumcs in Ramsay," Maurenbrecher,^ and 
others, and for the early date of Acts in Koch ^ and most recently 
in Torrey.^ On the other hand, many have expressed their 
sharp dissent, for instance, Schiirer,*' Hilgenfeld,'' Jiilicher,^ 
Clemen,^ Bousset,io Walter Bauer," P. W. Schmidt,!^ Jean 
Reville,^^ Loisy,i* Bacon,^^ and Maurice Jones,^^ who accepts the 
Lucan authorship but not the early date. 

Few who did not already believe in the identity of the 

^ Lukas der Arzt, p. 80. 

2 Expositor, Dec. 1906 and Feb. 1907. 

^ Von Jerusalem nach Rom, 1910. 

* Die Abfassungszeit des lukanischen Geschichtswerkes, 1911. 

® The Comjjositioji and Date of Acts, Harvard Theological Studies, i., 1916. 

^ Theologische Liter aturzeitung, 1906, No. 14 ; and 1908, No. 6. 

' Zeitschrift filr tvissenschaftliche Theologie, 1906, p. 461 ff. ; 1908, p. 176 ff. 

* Neue Linien in der Kritik der evangelischen Uberlieferung, 1906, p. 60 ff. 

* Theologische Rundschau, 1907, p. 97 ff. 

" Ihid. 1908, p. 185 ff. " Ibid. 1911, p. 277 £f. 

^" Die Apostelgeschichte bei De W etle-Overbeck und bei Adolf Harnach, 1910. 

^' Revue de Vhistoire des religions, 1907, vol. Iv. p. 233 ff. 

^* Revue d'histoire et de litterature religieuses, 1910, p. 390 S. ; 1911, p. 476 £f. 

^^ American Journal of Theology, 1909, p. 59 ff. 

^* Expositor, Mar. 1914. 


author of the " we " passages with the author of Acts have 
found Harnack's argument for it convincing, in spite of his 
proof of identity of style, nor has his attempted demonstration 
that the author was a physician been generally accepted. 
Clemen thinks that the evidence makes against rather than for 
the medical profession of the author. Wellhausen ^ remarks 
that if Luke is to be found in the ' we ' passages of Acts xxvii. 
he appears to have been by profession a sailor rather than a 
physician, and Cadbury, in a careful study of the evidence, 
in his recent volume on The Style and Literary Method of 
Luke,^ and G. F. Moore in a pungent note in the same volume,^ 
seem finally to have demolished the medical argument altogether.* 
Harnack's discussions have shown that critics are still far 
from a consensus of opinion touching Acts. In 1889 Holtzmann 
could say that an agreement seemed possible and imminent,^ 
but Wellhausen's words, written in 1907, are nearer the truth — 
" There is still much to do in Acts." ^ 

^ Nachricldeii von der loniglichen Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften zu Oditingen; 
Philologisch-hiMnrische Klasse, 1907, p. 21. 

2 Harvard Theological Studies, vL, 1919. » P. 51 ff. 

* Cf. also P. W. Schmidt, ojx cit. p. 9 ff. 

^ Handcommentar, vol. i. p. 309. * Oj). cit. p. 21. 



By J. W. HuNKiN 

In this chapter it is proposed to give a short sketch of the British 
contribution to the general study of the period covered by the 
Acts of the Apostles. 

It would be easy to amplify the sketch indefinitely along the 
lines suggested by the references which appear in the footnotes. 
Books which deal exclusively with textual criticism, and those 
which are specifically commentaries, are not treated here. 
Peiagius. ^he fijst British writer, as far as we know, upon any subject 

whatsoever is Peiagius ; and among the earhest of his works is 
a commentary on the Epistles of St. Paul, published at Rome 
about 410 A.D. 

The Vulgate text of the epistles had been issued in 383-384 
A.D. by St. Jerome, and Peiagius based his commentary upon this 
revised text. 

The re-discovery of his work is a problem which has occupied 
the attention of scholars for some time past.^ At length Dr. 
Souter has found in the Grand Ducal Library at Karlsruhe a 
ninth-century MS. (No. CXIX. of the Reichenau collection) which 

^ This chapter has been written along a Ime suggested by Dr. Foakes Jackson. 
The writer is greatly indebted to Professor Burkitt for criticism and help. 

^ The chief authorities are : S. Berger, Hist, de la Vulgate (Paris, 1893) and 
Les Prefaces jointes aux livres de la Bible dans les 3ISS. de la Vulg. (Paris, 1902) ; 
H. Zimmer, Peiagius in Irland (Berlin, 1901) ; and, latest and most important 
of all, A. Souter, " The Commentary of Peiagius on the Epistles of Paul : the 
Problem of its Restoration " (Proc. Brit. Acad., 1905-1906), pp. 409 ff. Dr. 
Souter is undertaking an edition of the Commentary for the Cambridge Texts 
.and Studies. 



is a transcript of an original not later than the middle of the 
sixth, and probably of the fifth century, and appears to be, if not 
the sole surviving copy ^ of Pelagius's commentary in its original 
form, at any rate nearer to the original than any other. It is 
noteworthy that the commentary is anonymous (as Pelagius's 
work probably was from the very first), and that its scriptural 
text agrees closely with that of Codex Amiatinus of the Vulgate.^ 
Pelagms's expositions are very brief, as St. Augustioe said they 
were,^ and most of the epistles are introduced by a short preface. 
In addition to these there is a general introduction to the 
epistles, which is also found and again attributed to Pelagius 
early in the ninth century in the Book of Armagh. 

Pelagius's exposition is, as we should expect, above all things 
clear and logical. But his contribution to the serious study of 
St. Paul is of the slightest kind. In his general introduction he 
argues for the PauUne authorship of the Epistle to the Hebrews. 
That epistle makes, with the other epistles of St. Paul to churches, 
as distinct from individuals, ten epistles altogether : and this is 
as it should be, for under the old dispensation there were ten 
commandments. There are some who say that the epistle does not 
bear St. Paul's name, and that therefore it cannot be attributed 
to him. You might as well say, Pelagius repUes, that as it bears 
no name it was written by no one ! * Oddly enough, however, no 
commentary by Pelagius on the Epistle to the Hebrews survives. 

The next British scholar whose work in connection with the Bede. 
Acts calls for our attention is the Venerable Bede. In the list 
of his published works given at the end of his Historia Eccle- 
siastica we find the following items : 

(1) Extracts from St. Augustine on the Apostle {i.e. St. Paul). 

(2) On the Acts, two books, 

(3) A book on each of the General Epistles. 

^ As Dr. Souter at first seemed to think, but his opinion appears since to have 
undergone some modification. 

^ And more closely with this codex than with Codex Fuldensis. 

* Aug. De pecc. mer. III. i. 1. 

* The text of Pelagius's introduction is given in Zimmer, op. cit. p. 26. 


(4) Chapters for readings in the New Testament (with the 
exception of the Gospels). 

Of the first of these four works no genuine copy appears to be 
extant. The third ^ is chiefly remarkable for its general preface, 
now preserved only in the older manuscripts.^ Bede argues that 
the first place among the apostles belongs to St. James and 
not to St. Peter. 

The second of the above-mentioned works is of course the 
most important for our present purpose. 

The first book ^ consists of a short commentary in which Bede 
relies a good deal upon St. Augustine and other Latin fathers, and 
to some extent makes use of the allegorical method of interpreta- 
tion. He often quotes from the insipid verses of Arator who had 
done the Acts into Latin hexameters in two books about 542 a.d. 

In the second book,* Liber Retraciationis, or corrections, 
Bede becomes more critical and gives evidence of having made a 
careful study of a Greek MS., which indeed was none other than 
the Codex Laudianus {Bodl. Laud. 35), well known to modern 
textual critics as E'^^*^- 

There is little British work upon subjects connected with the 
Acts to be recorded for six hundred years after Bede's death. 

In the first half of the thirteenth century Robert Grosseteste, 
equally great as bishop and scholar, is said to have written a 
short commentary upon the Epistles of St. Paul.^ In the second 
half of the fourteenth century a powerful advocate of the studying 
of the Scriptures in general appeared in the person of John 
Wyclifie. He maintained that the knowledge of the Scriptures is 
Wyciiffe. the csscnce of all knowledge,^ and in developing his own theory 

1 Migne, Patrologia Latina, 93, col. 9 f. Dr. Giles, Bedae omnia opera, vol. 
xii. pp. 157 f., in Patres Ecclesiae AngUcanae. 

2 E.g. B.N. 2366, C.V.L. LI. 2. 7, Caius 347 ; see Giles's Preface to vol. xii., 
by which the statement in Diet. Nat. Biog. (Bede) should be corrected. 

3 Migne, Patrologia, 92, col. 937 fE. ; Giles, Bedae, vol. xii. 

* Mgne, Patrologia, 92, col. 995 ff. ; Giles, op. cit. xii. Bede's Commentary 
on St. Luke is given in Giles, op. cit. x. and xi. 

6 S. Pegge, The Life of Robert Grosseteste (1793), p. 275. 

* De civili dominio, 1. 44 (ed. R. L. Poole for the Wychf Soc, 1885), p. 402. 


of property he appealed especially to the example of the Church 
as recorded in the first chapters of the Acts. His favourite 
passage perhaps was Acts iv. (32-35) ending with the words, 
" And distribution was made unto every man according as he 
had need " {v. 35).i 

The disciples were called Christiani and not Jesiiani (Acts 
xi. 26), he says, " quia Christus est racione unctus pre regibus et 
2}rophetis, licet Messie authonomatice conveniat qui omnes unguit 
suos discipulos oleo gracie ut kabitantes fratres in unum habeant 
omnia in communi, eciam pilos temporaHum usque ad esibiUa 
que sunt harha summi pontificis, ut dicitur Ps. cxxxii. 2. Jesu 
autem est proprium nomen abbatis nostri qui nos non salvat, nisi 
servemus reUgionem nostram." ^ 

In another chapter in the same work he enumerates eight 
points in which the early Church is a model of true religion : ^ 

1. Its members were all of one mind (Acts iv. 32). 2. They 
held no property singly. 3. They shared all with others. 4. 
They preached the Resurrection of Christ. 5. They acted up to 
their teaching. 6. All lived alike ; there were no rich and poor. 
7. They sold their possessions and laid the money at the apostles' 
feet. 8. They divided to each as he had need. 

Again he supports his contention that rulers are to be obeyed 
by the clergy by quoting Rom. xiii. 1, and reminding his readers 
of St. Paul's appeal to Caesar (Acts xxv. 10, 11) ; and he calls 
attention to the fact that it was not for himself but for the saints 
in Jerusalem that St. Paul collected money (Acts xx. 34 and 
Rom. XV. 1-3).* 

But WycHffe's chief contribution to the study of the New 
Testament is to be found in the interest he aroused through the 
translation of the Vulgate into English, which was undertaken by 
him and completed by his followers. This translation, although 

^ See De civili dominio, i. 14, p. 97 ; see also iii. 12 (ed. Loserth), p. 196. 

^ De civili dominio, iii. 2 (ed. Loserth), p. 15. 

^ Op. cit. iii. 6 (ed. Loserth), pp. 77 ff. 

* Op. cit. iii. 9 (p. 143). In the Latin works in whicli Wycliffc expounds liis 
communistic views we find frequent references to the writings of St. Luke 
{e.g. op. cit. ii. 14, 15). 



it ma}^ have had Uttle or no literary efiect upon the subsequent 
translations of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, prepared 
the way for them by creating a demand for the Scriptures in 
the common language of the people.^ 
English The genealogy of the later translations of the New Testament 

in general and of the Acts in particular is indicated in the following 
table : 

Erasmus's Greek Testament 

Tyndale's New Testament Stephanus's Greek Testament 

(1525)2 (1551) 

I I 

Matthew's Coverdale's Beza's New Testament 

(1537)3 (1535) (1556) 

The Great Bible Geneva Bible 

(1539)4 (1560)5 

Bishop's Bible 

Rheims N.T. 


Authorised Version 

^ On earlier English translation of parts of the Bible see the introduction 
to Miss A. C. Panes' edition of a Fourteenth Centur)j English Biblical Version 
(1902). The Acts (i.-xxviii. 28, 30-31, i.e. with the omission of xxviii. 29) is 
contained in four MSS., of which the oldest is in the library of Corpus Christi 
College, Cambridge (Parker, 434), and the MS. which forms the basis of Miss 
Panes' edition is at Selw3Ti College (108, L.l). See also M. Deansley, The 
Lollard Bible, and other Medieval Biblical Versions (1920). 

" T\Tidale also used Erasmus's Latin translation of his text, the Vulgate, and 
Luther's German translation. 

^ Matthew's New Testament consisted of Tyndale's last revision (1535) 
which was without marginal notes (of his 1534 edition), but contained headings 
to the chapters in the Gospels and Acts (though not in the Epistles). 

* The New Testament in the Great Bible is a revision, by Coverdale, of 
Matthew's. Coverdale's work shows the influence of the Vulgate and of 
Erasmus's Latin Version. 

^ The New Testament, 1557 : in 1560 the whole Bible, including the N.T. 


published in 1557 thoroughly revised. The N.T. had been largely the work 
of W. Whittingham formerly a Fellow of All Souls and Senior Student of 
Christ Church. Whittingham had based liis text upon Tyndale, and a small 
translation committee corrected it with the assistance of the Latin translation 
and commentary of Beza (1556 and 1559). 

® Another edition, 1569 and another 1572, all under Archbishop Parker's 
direction. The work is uneven, but is better in the New Testament than in 
the Old (.4 General View of the History of the English Bible by B. F. Westcott, 
3rd cd., W. A. Wright, 1905, p. 231). 

' Begun at Douai (1568) and finished at Rheims. The translation is made 
from the Vulgate, but it appears to contain traces of the influence of the Geneva 
version of 1560 (Westcott, op. cit. p. 245 n.). 

* The work was based upon the edition of the Bisliops' Bible published in 
1602, but the revisers made considerable use both of the Genevan and of the 
Rhemish version. 

It is to William Tyndale more than to any other single William 
translator that the characteristics of the Authorised Version are 
due.''^ " It is of more cleaner English," said Friar Barons.^ His 
translation was the result of a thorough study of the Greek text. 
The notes in the margin of his 1534 edition are not only horai- 
letical, as e.g. Acts xiv. 23, "Prayer and fastynge go to gether"; 
but reveal a scholar's interest in the narrative itself. For example : 
Acts xii. 12, " This John is the same Marcke, that wryte the 
gospel of Marcke": Acts xix. 19, "These syluerlinges which we 
now and then call pence the lues call sades, ad are worth a. x. 
pece sterlynge." 

The Gospels and the Acts in this edition of 1534 were preceded 
by a table of contents, the items of which are transferred to the 
separate chapters in the edition of 1536, where the notes ^ are 

^ It has been calculated that 90 per cent of the words in the Authorised 
Version come from Tyndale's. 

^ Strype's Ecclesiastical Memorials i., App. No. xvii., quoted Westcott, op. cit. 
p. 37. Sir Thomas More's famous criticism of Tyndale's translation is found in 
his Dyaloge (1529). What Sir Thomas objects to more than anything else is 
Tyndale's substitution of seniours for priestes. congregacion for churche. love 
for charitye, favour for grace, repentance for penance, and so on {Dyaloge, 
iii. 8). 

* The chapter headings in the A.V. are not identical with these, nor were 
tliey composed by the revision committee. They were apparently left to the 
various revisers of the various books (see art. by C. Kegan Paul in the 
Theological Review, 1869, p. 102). 

VOL. II 2d 


Geneva The next important advance after Tyndale's was made by 

the editors of the Geneva Bible (1557 and 1560). This Bible, a 
moderate quarto in size, printed in Roman letter, with verse 
divisions, short marginal notes, and maps and plans, was for 
three-quarters of a century the household Bible of the EngUsh 

Its editors made good use of Beza's Latin translation of the 
New Testament (1556 and 1559). In several instances, where 
the Geneva Bible is the first to give a correct translation of the 
Greek, its accuracy is due to Beza. An example ^ may be taken 
from Acts xxvii. 9, where Tyndale (followed by the Great Bible) 
had translated " because also that we (they, G.B.) had overlonge 
fasted " ; and the right rendering, " because also the Fast was now 
passed," first appears in the Geneva version. This correction no 
doubt is due to Beza, whose translation reads " quod jam etiam 
jejuniuin praeteriisset," and who has a note as follows, " tempus 
designat Lucas ex more Judaici popuU." The earlier translators 
had been led away by Erasmus, who defends his version in his 
commentary. 3 Similarly, in Acts xxvii. 13, the Geneva version 
gets its ' nearer,' instead of ' Asson,' from Beza, while the 
previous versions follow Erasmus in taking Asson as a place and 
not as an adverb. Here the Bishops' Bible failed to foUow the 
Geneva correction. 

On the other hand, in Acts xxvii. 17, where the older Enghsh 
versions, following Erasmus, rendered aKevo<i by ' vessel ' and 
Beza had the more correct translation ' sails,' the Geneva 
version agrees with the old English versions, and the first sign 
of Beza's correction appears in the note in the margin of the 
Bishops' Bible, " some read the sayles." 

^ H. W. Hoare estimates that 160 editions of it were published {Nineteenth 
Century, Ap. 1899). 

^ See Westcott, op. cit. p. 227. Westcott also quotes Acts xxiii. 27. Both 
these examples were originally given by Archbishop Trench {On the Authorised 
Version, p. 113 n.). 

^ Annotationes, 1522, p. 276. WycHffe following the Vulgate had not 
fallen into this error, — " whanne seylyng thanne was not .^ikir for that fasting 
was passid." 


Other notes ^ originate as far as we know with the Geneva 
version itself. For instance, on Acts xxvii. 17, where its text 
reads " fearing lest they should have fallen into Syrtes," we 
find the following note, " ye goulfe Syrtes, which were certaine 
boyling sandes that swallowed up all that they caught." ^ This 
note reappears in the margin of the Rheims version in a 
shorter form — " a place of quicke sandes." Thence appar- 
ently it found its way in the A.V. into the text itself as 
' quicksands.' ^ 

The translators at Geneva had set an example in their com- Authorised 


mittee for translation which was followed years afterwards in 
England. As a result of the Hampton Court Conference (1604) 
a large committee was appointed, and, divided into six groups, it 
worked steadily from 1607 to 1611. The four Gospels and the Acts 
were allotted to a group of Oxford scholars, of whom the most 
famous was Sir H. Savile, the Provost of Eton, the most learned 
classic in England in Elizabeth's reign.* 

Basing their work upon the Bishops' Bible ^ they made full 
use of all the best preceding versions, both English and Con- 
tinental, and specially of the Geneva version. It is also clear 
that they paid considerable attention to the Roman CathoUc 

^ The headlines at the top of the pages of this version are sometimes very 
curious : e.g. above Acts xi. 15 £F., " Peter is purged " ; above Acts xii. 18-25, 
" The plague of tyrantes." But there is nothing in the Acts to come up to the 
heading of the page containing the account of the beheading of St. John the 
Baptist (Mk. vi.), " The inconuenience of dauncing." [Ed. of 1582.] 

2 Cf. the similar geographical note upon Salmone (Acts xxvii. 7) — " which 
was an high hil of Candie bowing to the seaward." 

' It is a curious fact that Wycliffe's version here has " sondi places." 
The word Crete (Acts xxvii. 7) came into the A.V. in a somewhat similar 
way. The Geneva version, followed by the Bishops' Bible, had Candie 
with Creta in the margin ; in the Rheims version and the A.V. Crete is in 
the text. 

* Hallam, Lit. Hist, of Europe, ii. 62. His is still the best complete edition 
of the works of St. Chrysostom. 

^ There seems to have been something lacking in the su])er\ision of this 
Bible for jjublication. This fact is illustrated by the curious forms of some of 
the initial letters. The background of the first letter of the Epistle to the 
Hebrews is a picture of Leda and the Swan : that of the first letter of the 
Acts is a picture of Ne])tuno driving in the sea. 


version which had been issued from Rheims, and particularly in 
the matter of vocabulary .^ 

It is unnecessary to dwell upon this noble version. Its 
defects, such as they are, in the Acts are due not so much to 
carelessness or inaccuracy of translation as to the deficiencies of 
the Greek text which was before the translators. Erasmus's text 
which they used had been based on poor MSS. at Basel. 

Even from this slight sketch it will be seen that, starting with 
Erasmus, there had been a succession of students who had broken 
away from the scholastic tradition and had undertaken fresh 
studies of the text of the New Testament itself. The movement 
may indeed be traced back another twenty years to Michaelmas 
John Coiet. 1496, whcu John Colet, having just returned to Oxford from Italy, 
deUvered his famous course of lectures upon St. Paul's Epistles. 
Colet began with the Epistle to the Romans and treated it as 
a whole, bringing out its connection with St. Paul's life and 
illustrating it by Suetonius's description of the contemporary 
state of society at Rome.^ 
Erasmus. A year or two later Erasmus attended some of these lectures 

when he was at Oxford, and came imder the influence of Colet's 
strong personality. Colet urged him to devote himseK to the 
study of the Scriptures,^ and after some delay, during which he 
was diligently improving his Greek, Erasmus at length issued his 
Novum Instrumentum, consisting of the Greek text of the New 
Testament and a Latbi version of it, together with Annotations. 
In these Annotations Erasmus uses the critical method of ex- 
position in much the same way as Colet had done.* He uses it 

^ This is not specially noticeable in the Acts, but examples do occur, e.g. 
xxviii. 11 "sign" (A.V. and Rheims) where the Great Bible, Geneva, and 
the Bishops' Bible have " badge." For other books see Westcott, op. cit. 
pp. 253 ff., pp. 266 fE. 

^ A copy of Colet's exposition of this epistle is in Cambridge University 
Library, MS. Gg 4, 26. It seems to contain corrections in Colet's o'.vn hand- 
writing (Sesbohm, The Oxford Reformers, 3rd ed., 1887, p. 33 n.). 

^ Seebohm, op. cit. ^. 128. 

* Although in his conversations with Colet Erasmus had to a certain extent 
defended a manifold sense in Scripture (Seebohm, op. cit. p. 124). 


cautiously, however, and takes shelter as far as possible behind 
the Fathers, and especially behind St. Jerome. For example, 
he points out that St. Jerome had observed the discrepancy 
between the account of Abraham's doings in St. Stephen's 
speech (Acts vii.) and the account in the book of Genesis, 
and simply adds, " Hunc nodum illic nectit Hieronymus nee 
eum dissolvit." ^ 

Erasmus was by this time the writer most admired in Europe, 
and his pubUcation exerted an immense influence. It may be 
regarded as the starting-point of modern scientific exegesis. 

But we must return to England. The Reformers had 
appealed from the Church to the Bible, and the Bible came 
more and more to take the place of the books of the School- 
men. " The New Testament was locked up again, after a 
preUminary glance, as an armoury of arguments for or against 
Protestant bodies." ^ Some of the controversiaUsts were more 
judicious, some were less, in their use of this armoury. Most 
judicious of all is Richard Hooker. He instances the decree of Richard 
Acts XV. 28 to illustrate the fact that laws properly divine may 
still be mutable,^ — " this very law . . . is . . . abrogated by 
decease of the end for which it was given." He points to the 
case of Matthias (Acts i. 26) to show that the word bishop 
was not confined in the times of the Apostles to " oversight 
in respect of a particular Chm"ch and congregation. For, I 
beseech you, of what parish or particular congregation was 
Matthias bishop 1 his office Scripture doth term episcopal." * 
And so on. 

A distinct advance had been made at any rate in two The laity 

read the 

^ Annotationes (Acts vii.), p. 242. And see Seebohm, oj). cit. pp. 331 f. for 
other examples. As Professor Burkitt points out {Encycl. Brit., 11th ed., 
vol. iii. p. 8SG, Art. "Bible") Erasmus is careful to distinguish between his 
sources, e.g. with regard to St. Paul between (a) direct statements in the Acts, 
(6) inferences from the Pauline e))istlcs, and (c) the statements of later writers 
like Dionysius of Corinth (quoted by Eusebius). 

^ Professor Burldtt in one of his lectures in Cambridge in 1910. 

^ Laws oj Ecclesiastical Polily, III. x. 2 (1594). 

« Book VIT. xi. 3. 


respects. In the first place, the laity had begun to be readers of 
the Bible. A practical man of affairs like William Bradford 
(1590-1657), the second governor of Plymouth, New England,went 
so far as to acquire some knowledge of Hebrew as well as Latin and 
Greek in order " to see with his own eyes the ancient oracles of 
God in their native beauty." And in the second place, the texts 
were taken according to their plain literal meaning, and not used 
as an allegory. This advance was maintained, and more atten- 
tion paid to historical backgroimd, by the writers of the next (the 
seventeenth) century. Three names may be mentioned, all of 
them honoured by both sides in the long controversy between 
Puritan and Churchman, Roundhead and Cavalier. The first was 

John the Roundhead, John Lightfoot, who under the Commonwealth 

'^ °° ■ was appointed Master of St. Catharine HaU in Cambridge (1650), 
and at the Restoration offered to resign, but was confirmed in 
his mastership by Shelden the Archbishop of Canterbury in 
recognition of his learning. He is chiefly remembered by his 
Horae Hebraicae et Talmudicae, of which one part deals with 
the Epistle to the Corinthians (Cambridge, 1664), and another, 
pubHshed posthumously by Richard Kidder in 1678, with the 
Acts of the Apostles and the Epistle to the Romans. Some years 
earlier, in 1645, Lightfoot had pubHshed a commentary upon the 
Acts of the Apostles, chapters i.-xii., in the introduction to which 
he explains that the Acts naturally falls into two sections, the 
first dealing with the Jews, the second with the Gentiles. His 
comments are useful and scholarly, and his chief contribution to 
New Testament study is the hght that he throws upon Jewish 
customs and thought from the Rabbinical WTitings. " By 
constant reading of the rabbis," says Gibbon, " he became almost 
a rabbi himself." 

Henry A morc popular figure was Henry Hammond, one of Charles 

I.'s chaplains. His life by Bishop Fell (1661) is one of the most 
charming of English biographies. During the Conunonwealth he 
found an asylum with Sir John Pakington at Westwood, and there 
he ^vrote his Parajjhrase and Annotations upon all the Books of 



the New Testament (fol. London, 1653).^ It is sensibly written, 
and was much used. Hammond says he purposely abstains 
'■' from all doctrinal conclusions and deductions and definitions 
on one side, and from all Postillary observations, and accommoda- 
tions, moral, or mystical anagogies on the other side." His plan 
rather was to weigh the context, to compare one Scripture with 
another, to study closely the original language and the meaning 
of Hebrew words as well as Greek, to take " notice of some 
customes among the Jewes, the Grecians, and Romans," and 
to add " sometimes the testimonies of the Antients when they 
appeared most usefull, and when my slender collections enabled 
me to annex them." In the margin he gives (a translation of) 
some of the variants from three Greek MSS., one of which is 
Codex Bezae, — " because this Kingdome of ours hath been 
enriched with some monuments of Antiquity in this kind, which 
were probably designed by God for more honourable uses than 
onely to be laid up in Archives, as dead bodies in vaults and 
charnel-houses, to converse with dust and worms and rottenness." 

This type of scholarship reaches its height in John Pearson, Bishop 
Lady Margaret Professor at Cambridge, Master of Jesus, of Trinity, 
and finally Bishop of Chester. Pearson again was a royalist, but 
the Puritans had a great respect for him.^ It was in 1659 that 
he pubhshed his great Exposition of the Creed. Two years later, 
when he became Professor at Cambridge, one of the courses of 
lectures which he delivered was upon the Acts of the Apostles. 
But his Lectio7ies in Acta Apostolorum were not published till 
after his death.^ They were accompanied by a short essay 
entitled " Annales Paulini." * Pearson makes good use of Roman 

^ Hcarne tells us (Diary, Bliss, vol. i. p. 352) that he was the first man m 
England that had copy-money. " He was paid such a some of money (I luiow 
not how much) by Mr. Royston, the King's printer, for his Annotationes on 
the Testament." 

* He was apparently the only Episcopalian at the Savoy Conference (ICOl) 
who impressed Baxter. 

' By Dodwell in 1688. 

* These are both translated from the Latin and edited by J. R. Crowfoot, 
Cambridge, 1851. The lectures arc incomplete (Crowfoot, op. cit. p. 50 n.). 



The rise of 



authors, of Josephus, and of the patristic writings.^ But he does 
not allow his pages to be overburdened. One quotation will be 
sufficient to illustrate the care with which he consulted his 
authorities. " It may be collected," he says, " from Acts xi. 28, 
where the Cambridge MS. has 'While we were assembled together,' 
that Luke was before with Paul at Antioch, and had now come 
up with him at Troas." ^ 

But we are now at the dawn of a new era in the world of 
thought. In 1651, Thomas Hobbes, a friend of Galileo and 
Mersenne, published his Leviathan. The purpose of this brilHantly 
written book was to advocate the entire subordination of the 
ecclesiastical to the secular authority, but incidentally it con- 
tained 2 some acute criticism of the Old Testament. His attitude 
to the New Testament may be summed up in his own words : " At 
which time,* though ambition had so far prevailed on the great 
doctors of the Church, as no more to esteem Emperours, though 
Christian, for the Shepherds of the people, but for Sheep ; and 
Emperours not Christian, for Wolves ; and endeavoured to 
passe their Doctrine, not for Counsell, and Information, as 
Preachers ; but for Laws, as absolute Governours ; and thought 
such frauds as tended to make the people the more obedient to 
Christian Doctrine, to be pious ; yet I am perswaded they did 
not therefore f alsifie the Scriptures, though the copies of the Books 
of the New Testament were in the hands only of the Ecclesias- 
ticks ; because if they had an intention so to doe, they would 
surely have made them more favorable to their power over 
Christian Princes, and Civill Soveraignty, than they are." 

The rise of Deism has begun. It reaches its summit in 
Matthew Tindal's Christianity as Old as the Creation (1730). 

A few quotations will show the new attitude to the Bible : 
" In things tending to the Honour of God, and the Good of 
Mankind, the dernier Resort is to Reason ; whose Dictates, as 

^ Cf. M. Poole's massive Synojisis Criticorum (1669-76.) 
2 Annals of S. Paul, ed. Crowfoot, p. 93. ^ Chapter xxxiii. 

* I.e. at the time of the Council of Laodicea, a.d. .364, p. 2S1, ed. A. R. 
Waller (Cambridge, 1904). 


they need no Miracles for their Support, so all Doctrines incon- 
sistent with them, tho' they plead endless Miracles, must be 
look'd upon as diabohcal Impostures." ^ 

" Had there been but one Language, and a Book writ in that 
Language, in indelible characters (so that there cou'd be none of 
these thirty thousand various Readings, which are own'd to be 
crept into the New Testament) and all cou'd have access to it ; 
yet even then, considering how uncertain the meaning of Words 
are, and the interest of designing Men to put a wrong sense on 
them ; it must be morally impossible this Religion could long 
continue the same." ^ 

In another passage Tindal quotes from Scripture {e.g. Gal. ii. 
13, Acts XV. 39, and Rom. vii. 19, 23) : " Do not these instances, 
tho' many more might be added, plainly show that inspir'd 
Persons, whether Prophets or Apostles, are subject to the same 
Passions, even to dissembling and lying, as other Men ? And 
that we sin against that Reason, which was given us to distin- 
guish between Good and Evil ; Religion and Superstition ; if 
we do not by it examine all Doctrines whatsoever, and by 
whomsoever deliver 'd ? " ^ 

One more quotation will be sufl&cient : " And as to those 
Prophecies, if they may be so call'd, in the New Testament, 
relating to the second Coming of Christ, and the End of the World, 
the best Interpreters and Commentators own, the Apostles them- 
selves were grossly mistaken ; there scarce being an Epistle, 
but where they foretel that those Times they wrote in, were 
Temjpora novissima." * 

1 Chap, xii., 3rd ed. (1732), p. 181. Tindal (p. 249) quotes with approval 
Nye's explanation of the sun standing still. Josh. x. 12, 13, viz. that the words 
come from a Poem, written by one Jasher, and are to be taken as " an elegant 
Fiction, and very proper in a Poem that was written on such an Occasion." 
Conyers Middleton, another of the Deists, left behind him at his death, 1750, 
a paper on miracles so heterodox that Bolingbrokc advised that it should not 
be published (Diet. Nat. Biography, art. "Middleton," vol. xxxvii. p. 347). 

2 Chap. xiii. p. 200. 
8 Op. cit. p. 221. 

* Op. cit. p. 233. And then Tindal refers to more than a dozen passages in 
the Epistles. 




Replies to 


All this, it will be seen, involved a fresh study of the New 
Testament itself. Indeed some years previously (1696) Toland 
had contended that his thesis that Christianity was not mysterious 
but " intended a Rational and Intelligible Religion " was " prov'd 
from the Miracles, Method and Stile of the New Testament." ^ 
In his later paper, Nazarenus (1718), Toland lays down that 
" it will not be enough barely to quote our Gospels, Epistles, 
and the Acts of the Apostles, but their genuineness and integrity 
must be likewise establish'd by those arguments of which every 
good Christian may and ought to be appriz'd." ^ 

Toland had claimed to base his general position upon a 
philosophy similar to that of John Locke, and Locke was not 
unnaturally annoyed at having his name bracketed with Toland's 
by Stillingfleet, Bishop of AVorcester, and wrote three replies to 
the Bishop's charges (1696, 1697, and 1699). Locke had himself 
in 1695 pubUshed The Reasonableness of Christianity as Delivered 
in the Scriptures, which consisted of a careful study of the New 
Testament itself ; ^ and before his death he had prepared a 
paraphrase and notes on the Epistles of St. Paul to the Galatians, 
Corinthians, Romans, Ephesians, " to which is prefixed an essay 
for the understanding of St. Paul's epistles by consulting St. 
Paul himself." * 

^ The heading of Section II. chapter iii. In Sect. III. chapter vi. he dis- 
cusses the question, " When, why, and by whom were Mysteries brought into 
Christianity ? " and concludes (§ 91) that " Mystery prevail'd very little in the 
first Hundred or Century of Years after Christ ; but in the second and third 
it began to establish it self by Ceremonies." 

* Nazarenus, chapter xx. In this paper Toland lays stress on the differences 
between St. Paul and the other Apostles (especially St. Peter and St. James). 
See chapters viii. S. 

^ One of the most striking passages in this book is that (10th ed. vol. vii. 
pp. 140 f.) in which he shows : " Though yet, if any one should think, that out 
of the sayings of the wise heathens before our Saviour's time, there might be 
a collection made of all those rules of morahty, which are to be fomid in the 
Christian religion ; yet this would not at all hinder, but that the world, never- 
theless, stood as much in need of our Saviour, and the morahty dehvered by 

* In this masterly essay he complams of the chopping and mincing of the 
text into chapters and verses (Locke, Works, 10th ed., vol. viii. p. vii) and main- 
tains that the epistles must be read as wholes. He also contends that " he 


The greatest classic of the age, Richard Bentley, also entered Richard 
the lists, and his reply to Anthony Collins's ^ discourse of Free- 
thinking is characteristic of his vast learning and ready wit. 
He has no difficulty in exposing the deficiencies of Collins's 
scholarship and his remarks on Acts xix. 32, xx. 28, vii. 59,^ 
xxvii. 14 3 are good examples of his acute criticism.* The whole 
essay is written in the same spirit which prompted his famous 
note in the margin of his copy of John Malalas where the 
chronicler had made a gross blunder in geography : " Euge 
vero, S) 'JcoavvlSLov'^ (" Good indeed, Johnny"). 

This sketch of the Deistic controversy will serve as an intro- William 
duction to Paley's Horae Paulinae (1790). The purpose of this ^ ^ 
book was definitely apologetical, and it is, as it was intended to 
be, a companion to the author's still more famous Evidences of 
Christianity. The Deists had challenged the Church to an un- 
prejudiced examination of the origins of Christianity and had 
even thrown out insinuations of imposture. The Boyle lecture 
had been founded in 1692 for the purpose of combating their 
allegations. One of the early lecturers on this foundation, R. 
Biscoe, had taken as his subject the Acts of the Apostles ^ (1736- 

that would understand St. Paul right, must understand his terms in the sense 
he uses them, and not as they are appropriated by each man's particular philo- 
sophy to conceptions that never entered the mind of the apostle " (Ibid. p. xxi). 

1 PubUshed 1713. In 1724 ColUns published an examination of an essay 
by W. Whiston (now chiefly remembered as a translator of Josephus) on the 
fulfilment of the prophecies of the Old Testament in the New Testament, in 
which he showed that in many cases this fulfilment can only be maintained in 
the sense in which Whiston maintained it by giving an allegorical intcqjretation 
to the Old Testament passages. Whether intentionally or not, Collins made 
nonsense of the whole subject. Incidentally he threw out the brilhant con- 
jecture that the book of Daniel was a forgery of the age of Antiochus Epiphanes. 
(See F. C. Conybeare, The History of New Testament Criticism, 1910, p. 47.) 

2 8th ed., 1743, pp. 133 ff. » Ibid. pp. 97 ff. 

* Especially the last, a discussion of the relative value of the readings 
(vpoK\vS(x)u and evpaKvXuiv. We may notice also Bentley's remarks, p. 141. 
about the " postscripts " to 2 Tim. and Titus — " nobody yet either believ'd or 
affirm'd that these were underwritten by St. Paul himself. They are nothiii" 
but Memorandums or Endorsements written by others long aft^r the death of 
the Apostle." 

* 1736, the year in wliich Butler's Analogy was published. 


1738). He had shown how various facts stated by St. Luke are 
confirmed by other writers sucli as Josephus, Philo, the Rabbis in 
the Talmud, Roman and Greek writers, and St. Paul in his epistles. 
Indeed Paley had behind him a century of controversy, and 
his Evidences are a compendium of the most striking arguments 
against the Deists ^ during that period as they had been absorbed 
by him in his reading. The Horae Paulinae is a much more 
original work, and illustrates not only the extraordinary clear- 
ness of the writer's style, but his great power of observation of 
details. If a few of his conclusions ^ have to be modified in the 
light of further research, Jowett's commendation is not un- 
deserved. " The ingenuity of his arguments, the minuteness of 
the intimations discovered by him, the remoteness and com- 
plexity of his combinations leave the impression on the mind of 
absolute certainty in reference to the great Epistles to the Romans 
and Corinthians, and of high probability in reference to most of 
the others." ^ 

Paley does not embark upon any criticism of the text itself 
except in his appendix, where he gives his reasons for rejecting 
the Euthalian colophons to Galatians, 1 Cor., 1 and 2 Thess., 
1 Tim. and Titus : and all the Epistles and every part of the Acts 
were placed by him upon the same level of authenticity and 

At the opening of the nineteenth century, then, the New 
Testament had again been unlocked through the combined efforts 
of the Deists and their opponents. The Deists had suggested 
problems : through their lack of scholarship they could do Uttle 

Advance in The ncxt advaucc took place in the field of textual criticism. 

criticism, ^s loug ago as 1707, Dr. John Mill * had published a careful 

^ E.g. Paley's argument from the contempt, ridicule, and sufferings under- 
gone by the early professors of Christianity is found in a shortened form on 
pp. 22 flf. of Biscoe's book (ed. 1742). 

^ E.g. wdth regard to 1 and 2 Thess. For other instan3es see Dean Howson's 
edition, 1877. ' Commentarij (see below), vol. i. p. 204. 

* Dr. Mill continued the work of Bishop Fell, who in 1675 had published a 
collection of more than 100 MSS., one of which was the Codex of the Acts 


collation of a number of MSS., but lie had not ventured to intrude 
any of their readings into the received text itself. It was Karl 
Lachmann, the great authority on Lucretius, who in 1831 pro- 
duced the first modern critical edition of the New Testament. 

The first English scholar to avail himself of this work and to Henry 

. Alford. 

develop it was Henry Alford, the versatile ^ Dean of Canterbury. 
He began his monumental edition of the New Testament in Greek ^ 
while Vicar of Wymeswold in Leicestershire, and he struck a new 
line both by his good use of the researches of the best Continental 
scholars of his day,^ and also by making his commentary philo- 
logical rather than homiletical. Scholars were now beginning to 
have more help from works of reference such, for example, as 
Winer's Grammatik des neuiestamenilichen SpracMdioms.* 

The German writers to whom Alford is most indebted are 
those who, like de Wette, are typical of the exegesis of the period 
immediately before Baur.^ Neander's Gescliicliie der Pjlanzung 
und Leitung der christlichen EircJie durch die Apostel ^ ; Wieseler, 
Chronologie des apostolischen Zeitalters '^ ; and the commentaries 
of H. A. W. Meyer are other examples of the German writings 
used by Alford. 

Alford also refers to the commentary of Professor B. Jowett Benjamin 
upon St. Paul's Epistles to the Thessalonians, Galatians, and 
Romans ^ ; who likewise acknowledges his indebtedness to some 
of these and other Continental scholars, notably to the Swiss 

mentioned above as used by Bade, which had recently been presented to the 
Bodleian Library by Archbishop Laud. It was Mill who first called attention to 
the connection between Codex E and Bedc (Prol. p. clvii, col. 1). 

1 It will be remembered that he is the author of several popular hymns, 
e.g. " Come, ye thankful people, come," " Ten thousand times ten thousand." 

- Four volumes, 1841-1861. 

" He had spent three months in Bonn, 1847, in order to learn German. 

■'■ Published in 1821. The first edition of Liddell and Scott's Greek Lexicon 
appeared in 1843 : the first edition of C. L. W. Grimm's in 1862-18G8. Older 
works were Surenhusius's Mischna (1698-1703); Schoettgen's Rabbinical 
studies (1733-1742) ; Bingham's Origenes Ecclesiasticae (1708-1722) ; Mangey's 
Pldlo (1742); J. J. Wcttstein's Greek Test. (1751-1752); Holmes and Parsons' (1798-1827). 

^ A. Schweitzer, Paul and his Interpreters, p. 10 n. 

« 1st ed., 1832-1833. ' 1848. » 1st ed., 1855. 


theologian Usteri, whose Development of the Pauline System of 
Doctrine may be regarded as one of the starting-points of the 
modern historical study of Paulinism,^ and to Gfrorer, whom he 
follows very closely in his treatment of Philo. 

Professor Jowett, as we should expect, deals with his subject 
in a forceful and independent manner. His excursus upon Philo 
is one of the first attempts in English to estimate the importance 
of this writer's works for the illustration of the philosophical 
atmosphere in which the New Testament writers lived, and of 
the language which they had in common. In another essay 
Jowett identifies the visit to Jerusalem mentioned in Gal. ii. with 
that described in Acts xv. and says that " it caimot be denied 
that these discrepancies are important." ^ At the same time he 
admits that " they are of a kind which would be likely to arise 
in two authorities so different," and he makes no attempt to 
overpress them. He rejects the identification of the Galatians 
with the barbarous people of Lycaonia.^ He takes them rather 
to be Gauls, or at any rate the Phrygians or Greeks associated 
with them, and suggests that the fickleness of which the Apostle 
complains " may lead us to conjecture that he is addressing a 
people subject to violent rehgious impulses." * Bishop Lightfoot 
speaks of Jowett's work with respect,^ and brackets with it that 
of Bishop Ellicott, whose commentaries on the epistles were the 
standard commentaries in EngHsh until Lightfoot's own appeared. 
Bishop Ellicott is a temperamental conservative : he does not approve 

of Jowett's work, clever as he acknowledges it to be ; even Alford 
is a little too dependent upon the Germans. He himself uses 
German work, but very cautiously. We should not expect him 
to take much notice of Baur ; Hilgenfeld he finds very useful in 

1 1st ed., 1824. See Schweitzer, op. cit. p. 9 n. 

2 2nd ed., vol. i. p. 308. 

^ Ibid. p. 237. A foretaste of the South Galatian hypothesis. The hypo- 
thesis was expounded a little later by Perrot {De Galatia provincia Eomana, 
1867, pp. 43 ff.). 

* Ibid. p. 238. 

^ In his Commentary on Galatians (1865). He had subjected Jowett's 
commentaries to a searching examination in 18.56 (see below). 


historical questions, but the tone of his exegesis he thinks bad ; 
while he finds that Fritzsche often treats the Greek Fathers Avith 
unjust levity. The chief merit of ElUcott's work is due to his 
" minute and careful scrutiny " of the Apostle's language, and 
his commentaries are to be classed with those of Christopher 
Wordsworth (1856-1860), Godet, the Swass theologian (1879-1887), 
E. H. Gifford and T. S. Evans (in the Speaker^s Commentary, 
1881), as monuments of painstaking exegesis. 

While all this exegetical work was going on there appeared lUustrative 
side by side with it a series of studies illustrative of St. Paul's ^*" '^^' 
travels. The first of the series is the essay pubhshed in 1848 by 
a Fellow of the Royal Society, James Smith of Jordanhill, on Jamcs 
" The Voyage and Shipwreck of St. Paul." Smith was an jOTdanhiii. 
enthusiastic yachtsman as well as an eminent geologist, and his 
work is of permanent value as a demonstration that the twenty- 
seventh chapter of the Acts was written by an eye-witness and a 
landsman. He also proved conclusively that the scene of the ship- 
wreck was St. Paul's Bay, Malta, and not the island of Meleda 
in the Adriatic as had been suggested by some. The acuteness 
of Smith's critical faculty was made still more evident by the 
publication in 1853 of his Dissertation on the Origin and Connection 
of the Gospels. He maintained that the correspondence between 
the synoptic gospels was too close for them to be in hterary 
independence. He illustrated his contention by placing in 
parallel columns narratives of the same incidents in the Peninsular 
War written by Alison, Napier, and Suchet, and showed that there 
was no close verbal agreement between them except when one 
authority was using another, or two were using common sources. 
His conclusion was that St. Luke made use of the first and second 
gospels ; 1 and although this particular result has smce required 
modification, the acuteness of Smith's criticism will be recognised 
at once. 

^ Or rather of the original memoir written by St. Peter in Aramaic (of 
which the second gospel as we have it now is a translation by St. Mark) and of 
the Greek Gospel of St. Matthew. See especially pp. 201 ff., 302 ft". 



r. Lewin; 




The next illustrative work of this kind is found in T. Lewin's 
Life and Epistles of St. Paul (1851). Lewin was a barrister who 
had travelled a good deal in the Nearer East and made a study 
of St, Paul's life for upwards of forty years.i He paid special 
attention to chronology and finally published his results in Fasti 
Sacri, or a Key to the Chronology of the New Testament (1865).^ 

There followed the similar and more famous work of Cony- 
beare and Howson, The Life and Epistles of St. Paid, pubhshed 
first in parts and then completely in 1852. 

A late Master of Trinity, after having heard Dean Howson 
preach a University sermon, is said to have remarked that he 
never knew till then what a very clever man the late Mr. Conybeare 
must have been. As a matter of fact, however, this is merely a 
bon mot of the land famihar to those who knew the late Master, 
for the credit of the book belongs principally to Howson.^ It 
was he who contributed the geographical and historical sections 
which are its chief merit. Conybeare' s work was less important 
and the translations for which he was responsible were the " least 
happily executed portion '' * of the book. Howson continued his 
work on St. Paul in several other publications, as, for example, his 
Bohlen lectures on the Evidential Value of the Acts, deUvered at 
Philadelphia in 1880. In the same succession and of a still more 
popular character are A. P. Stanley's The Epistles of St. Paul 
to the Corinthians,^ a work lively and picturesque rather than 
scholarly or accurate ; and the voluminous writings of F. W. 

^ His second edition, 1874, contains above 370 engravings — views of places, 
maps, plans, and coins — many of them sketches of his own. 

^ A work still found to be very useful on account of its array of collateral 
evidence by a modem writer like Dr. D. Smith, Life and Letters of St. Paul, 
1919, p. xi. 

^ Howson, moreover, is said [Did. Nat. Biogr.) to have been an interesting 

* Bp. EUicott. The Life and Epistles of St. Paid not only had a large circula- 
tion but was widely used in such works as The Footsteps of St. Paul, by the 
author of The Morning and Night Watches, written (1855) for youths (" say 
from ten to seventeen years of age ... to attract them to a more careful and 
devout study of the Word of God "). 

® Published in 1855, while Stanley was a Canon of Canterbury. 


Farrar. Farrar had made his reputation while Headmaster of r. W; 
Marlborough by his Life of Christ, twelve editions of which were 
exhausted in a single year,^ Popular and uncritical though this 
book was it was founded on a wide if old-fashioned scholarship. 
Farrar followed it up with the Life and Worh of St. Paul, pub- 
lished in 1879,2 the ablest and most thorough of all his works. 
Three years later a third work appeared on The Early Days 
of Christianity.^ 

Such was the general character of English work about the 
'sixties ; painstaking exegesis, and illustration by means of travel 
and a certain amoimt of archaeology. Meanwhile in Germany 
renewed interest in PauHne study had been awakened by the 
startUng suggestions of F. C. Baur, which involved the authen- 
ticity of a number of the books of the New Testament. Many 
years before an Enghsh divine of the name of Evanson had written Evanson. 
a book* in which, after accusing the four gospels of gross irreconcil- 
able contradictions, he denied the authenticity of the Epistles to 
the Romans, Ephesians, and Colossians, and left those to Titus, 
Philippians, and Philemon doubtful. The Epistle to the Romans 
he rejected, because he argued from the Acts that " when St. 
Paul arrived at Rome, for the first time, in the reign of Nero, 
there was no Christian Church there, as indeed it is not at all 
probable there should have been. . . ." ^ In the Acts and in the 
third Gospel he had every confidence : " We have here, then," he 
says after reviewing and comparing the two works of St. Luke,^ 
" every kind of evidence, whereof the nature of the case admits, 
to convince us of the genuine authenticity and veracity of 
both these histories ; and with these, for my own part, I am 

^ And thirty editions were issued in the author's lifetime. 

^ 10th ed., 1904. A long review of the work appeared in the Church Quarterly 
Review, Jan. 1880, where it is objected that Farrar gives a clear and consistent 
conception of the man Paul rather than of the Apostle (p. 429). 

* 1882. Tlic work passed through five editions. Farrar then went on from 
the Now Testament to the History of the Early Church in the first six centuries 
and published his Lives of the Fathers : Church History in Biography, in 1889. 

* The Dissonance of the four generally received Evangelists, and the Evidence 
of their respective authenticity examined (1792). 

^ P. 258, « Whom he identifies with Silas, p. 111. 

VOL. II 2 E 


abundantly satisfied." For him Prophecy "is by far the most 
satisfactory, and the only lasting, supernatural evidence of the 
truth of any Revelation." ^ 

Evanson was evidently an acute observer if he was not a 

great scholar, but he scarcely had sufficient weight to compel the 

attention of his generation. He was, however, answered not only 

by a Bampton lecturer,^ but by Joseph Priestley the scientist, who 

in his Letters to a Young Man (1792-1793) pointed out that " the 

books called the Gospels were not the cause, but the effect, of 

the behef of Christianity in the first ages. For Christianity had 

been propagated with great success long before those books were 

written ; nor had the pubHcation of them any particular effect 

in adding to the nimaber of Christian converts. Christians 

received the books because they knew beforehand that the 

contents of them were true." ^ 

F. c. Baur. But BaiiT was a man of great abihty, already famous as a 

Pauline scholar. Like Strauss * he viewed history from the 

standpoint of a Hegelian philosopher. The early Cathohc 

Church, according to his xaew, was the synthesis of the two rival 

forces of Jewish and Gentile Christianity, the first centring in St. 

Peter and the second in St. Paul. In St. Paul's genuine epistles, 

which for him were only those to the Galatians, Romans, and the 

two to the Corinthians, he detected distinct traces of the primitive 

antagonism. The rest of the epistles attributed to St. Paul, 

together with the Acts, Baur held to be the result of the effort in 

the second century to reconcile the two parties in order that the 

Church might present a united front to the Gnosticism which was 

then threatening its very existence.^ 

The book ^ in which Baur embodied these ideas was pubHshed 
in 1845, ^vas written with great force and ability, and immediately 

1 P. 6. 2 T. Falconer, 1810. 

3 See F. C. Conybeare, op. ciL, 1910, p. 95. 

* D. F. Strauss, who had been a pupil of Baur's, had iiublished his Leben 
Jesu in 1835-6. 

^ See J. A. M'CIymont, New Testament Criticism, p. 231. 
^ Paulus der Apostel Jesu Christi. 


attracted the attention of the German theologians. The clever- 
ness of his work was also recognised in England, but its im- 
portance was not generally realised until W. R. Cassels adopted 
Baur's dates for the books of the New Testament in two volumes 
entitled Supernatural Religion, An Inquiry into the Reality of Super- 
Divine Revelation, which he pubKshed anonymously in 1874. To Religion. 
this book an answer at once appeared in a series of nine articles in 
the Contemporary Review,'^ by Bishop (then Professor) J. B. Light- 
foot. They were followed later by another in the same journal ^ 
on " Discoveries Illustrating the Acts of the Apostles." Cassels, 
whose identity was entirely unknown to Lightfoot, replied in the 
Fortnightly Review ^ and elsewhere. Meanwhile his book had 
passed through six editions by 1875.'* But the author, acute 
as he was, was no match for one of the greatest Bibhcal scholars 
of the time. 

The best sketch of Lightfoot's hfe and work is that by F. J. J- B- 
A. Hort in the Dictionary of National Biografhy.^ After being ° 
elected Fellow of Trinity in 1852, he lectured both on the Classics 
and upon the Greek Testament, and laid the foundations of his 
future work on St. Paul. He won his spurs as a Biblical critic by 
an article in the Journal of Classical and Sacred Philology for 
March 1856 « upon " Recent Editions of St. Paul's Epistles." 
The article is chiefly remarkable for its writer's faithful dealing 
with the recently pubUshed editions of St. Paul's Epistles by A. P. 
Stanley and B, Jowett. A. P. Stanley was convinced by Light- 
foot's criticism that it was not his vocation to be a commentator 
upon the New Testament ; he forthwith became a personal friend 
of his reviewer and produced commentaries no more. As against 
Jowett, Lightfoot maintained that though every allowance should 
be made for the difierence between the Greek of the New Testa- 
ment and Attic Greek, there was no sufficient reason " for 

1 Dec. 1874 to May 1877. - May 1878. ' Jan. 1875. 

* The only other English theological writer at this date who appears to 
follow Baur to any great extent is S. Davidson, whose Introduction to the Neio 
Testament in three volumes was first published in 1848-51. 

5 Vol. xxxiii. 6 Vol. iii. pp. 81-121. 


imputing a want of precision to Greek in this later stage " ; ^ 
and further that there was no evidence that St. Paul's knowledge 
of the language was imperfect. 
Lightfoot's Lightfoot's own commentaries are accordingly based upon an 
mentaries Gxact investigation of the grammar and vocabulary of St. Paul. 
The first to be published was his commentary on the Epistle to the 
Galatians ^ (1865) ; the second, three years later (1868), was upon 
the Epistle to the Phihppians ; ^ the third in 1875 was upon the 
Epistles to the Colossians and to Philemon. These commentaries 
are strictly scientific in that they attempt to set forth the natural 
meaning of the original, verse by verse, without any ulterior 
polemical purpose ; and it has been remarked by a very com- 
petent observer that the writer's judgment and scholarship show 
an ever-increasing maturity. 

The first of the three works mentioned above contains the 
celebrated dissertations on " The Brethren of the Lord," and on 
" St. Paul and the Three " ; the third, the exhaustive dissertation 
on the Essenes ; the second, the most famous of all, on the 
Christian Ministry. 
Lightfoots The dissertations appended to the Epistle to the Galatians 
T^ih^ contain Lightfoot's answer to the Tubingen School. By tracing, 
Tubingen gtep by stcp, "the progressive history of the relations between the 
Jewish and Gentile converts in the early ages of the Church as 
gathered from the Apostolic writings, aided by such scanty 
information as can be got together from other sources," Light- 
foot made use of the historical method of Baur with still greater 
efiect. By a more thorough exegesis, and by a more faithful 
adherence to the actual sources, Lightfoot constructed a picture 
of the development of the early Church which was plainly more 
reliable than anything the Tubingen school had been able to 

It was the great merit of Lightfoot not to isolate the New 
Testament from the remaining documents of the early Church. 
Along with the New Testament he was studying Clement of 
1 Op. cit. p. 107. 2 loth ed., 1890. ^ gth ed., 1888. 


Rome/ Ignatius,^ Polycarp,^ the early Roman succession of 
Bishops,^ Hippolytus of Pontus,^ Eusebius of Caesarea,* Roman 
Archaeology,^ and Greek and Latin inscriptions of all kinds. 

The result was that Lightfoot's work rested on a solid founda- 
tion and provided a firm basis upon which subsequent investi- 
gators could build.^ A better illustration of the permanence of 
his achievements could scarcely be found than the third of the 
dissertations mentioned above, that on the development of the 
Christian ministry. Fifty years later, in the Essays on the Early 
History of the Church and the Ministry, edited by the late 
Professor Swete (1918), Lightfoot's account is reaffirmed.' 

Another example of a different kind may be quoted from 
the edition of the Epistle to the Galatians. In the very difficult 
passage in the second chapter, verses 17, 18, and 19, Lightfoot's 
interpretation still holds the field. 

The chief advances that have been made since Lightfoot's Advances 
death have taken place along three main lines ; the first in Lightfoot. 
Archaeology, the second in Philology, the third in Comparative 
Religion. With the first, British students associate the name of 
Sir William Ramsay ; with the second. Dr. Grenfell, Dr. Hunt, 
Professor Deissmann, and the late Professor Moulton ; with the 
third Professor Kirsopp Lake and Professor Percy Gardner. 

I. It will be convenient to consider the second of these i. Philology, 
departments first, because its effect upon the specific study of the 
Acts is the least. The discovery, the decipherment, and the inter- 
pretation of great numbers of papyri and ostraka dating from 
300 B.C. to A.D. 300 hidden in various places in Egypt has thrown 
new light upon the Greek kolvi] of the first century a.d., the 

^ Of whose works he published an edition in 18G9. ^ Edited in 1885. 

^ Essays not issued till 1890 in the second edition of Clement, published 

* On whom he pubUshed an article in the Dictionary of Christian Biography 

'' Especially Do Rossi's work on Subterranean Rome. 

* Harnack in the Theol. Literaturzg. (June 14, 1890) spoke of Lightfoot's 
work as of imperishable value, and said that the considerations which he brings 
forward were never to be neglected. ' Op. cit. pp. xiii, 87 f. 



and Hunt. 

J. H. 


language in which the New Testament was actually written. 
Lightfoot himself had almost anticipated this development. In 
a lecture as early as 1863 he had said with reference to a New 
Testament word which had its only classical authority in 
Herodotus, " You are not to suppose that the word had fallen 
out of use in the interval, only that it had not been used in the 
books which remain to us : probably it had been part of the 
common speech all along. I will go further, and say that if we 
could only recover letters that ordinary people wrote to each 
other without any thought of being hterary, we should have the 
greatest possible help for the understanding of the language of 
the New Testament generally." ^ Among the pioneers in the 
work were Dr. Grenfell and Dr. Himt, whose series begun in 1898 
is happily still continuing. 

Upon these and other similar discoveries, as well as upon a 
study of the ever-increasing number of Greek inscriptions, 
philologists like Dr. Moulton have been able to construct 
grammars and lexicons of Hellenistic Greek.^ 

From these it appears that the language had in some respects 
lost its old precision. £/<? and ev are almost interchangeable ; 
the optative has almost dropped out of use ; verbs are com- 
pounded with various prepositions with little or no particular 
force ; and so on. In spite of all subsequent additions to our 
knowledge, however, such studies as that of Lightfoot on the 
meaning of Kpivetv and its compounds,^ based on a close examina- 
tion of the actual usage of the New Testament writers, still 
retain their value.* On the other hand , one has only to read the 

^ Quoted from the lecture notes of the Rev. J. Pulliblank by Moulton, 
Oramm. N.T. Greek, vol. i. 2nd ed. p. 242 (additional notes). 

2 Part I. of vol. ii. of the late Professor Moulton's Grammar was pubUshed 
by his pupil W. F. Howard in 1919 ; The Vocabulary of the Greek Testament, 
compiled by J. H. Moulton and G. MiUigan (1914), is still in the course of 
publication ; A. T. Robertson's Grammar of New Testament Greek in the Light 
of Historical Research (3rd ed., 1919) runs to over 1500 pages. 

^ On a Fresh Revision of the Neiv Testament (2nd ed., 1872), pjx 62 fip. 

* A good introduction to the whole subject will be foimd in Cambridge 
Biblical Essays (1909), No. 14, " New Testament Greek in the Light of Modern 
Discovery," pp. 461-505. 


translations of W. G. Rutherford to realise what a new light can w. g. 

i V Rutherford. 

be thrown upon the interpretation of the New iestament by 
a real familiarity with the Koivrj {Romans, 1900 ; Thessalonians 
and Corinthians, 1908). St. Paul's language is " vigorous and 
effective but neither correct nor elegant." ^ 

II. Turning now to Archaeology we fall at once upon The u. 
Historical Geography of Asia Minor, pubUshed by Professor logy. 
W. M. Ramsay the year after Lightfoot's death.^ This was at w. m. 
once recognised both in England and on the Continent as a ^™^*y- 
work of extraordinary importance. Mommsen himself explained 
its " ungewohnliche Bedeutung " to the Archaeological Institute 
of Berlin.3 Sanday declared that " Professor Ramsay's explora- Ramsay on 

' . - Asia Minor. 

tions in Asia Minor are among the three or four best things done 
by Englishmen in the field of scientific scholarship in this genera- 
tion." * Certainly such an array of facts with regard to the 
historical geography of Asia Minor had never till then been 
displayed. Inscriptions, coins, ancient and modern literature 
of all kinds had been searched out and brought to light and laid 
under contribution in a thoroughly workmanlike manner. The 
result was a more exact delimitation of the Roman provinces,^ 
a more complete definition of the network of roads, a surer 
identification of the ancient sites of Lystra ^ and Derbe ' and 
other places than had ever been achieved by modern scholarship 

It was in connection with his work upon Asia Minor that Ramsay 

, p 1 i 1 °" '■^'^ Acta. 

Professor Ramsay turned to the study of the Acts of the Apostles. 
He tells us ^ that he started with the confident assumption that 
the book was fabricated in the middle of the second century, and 

1 Dean Inge in Outspoken Essays (1919), pp. 220 f. - 1890. 

' Beiblatt zum Jahrbuch des kaiserlich deutschen archdologischen Instituts, 
1891, p. 37. 

* See Expositor, Series IV. No. 3, 1891, pp. 232 ff. 

'' Bingham in his Origines E celestas ticae (1708-1722) had studied the state 
and division of the Roman Empire with a view to its effect upon the organisa- 
tion of the Church (ix. 1). 

' At Khatyn Serai. ' At Zosta. See Sanday, op. cii. p. 240. 

* Pauline and other Studies in Early Christian History (190G), p. 199. 



that it was with a view to seeing what light it could throw on 
the state of Asia Minor at that period that he began to study it at 
all. He was, however, " gradually driven to the conclusion that 
it must have been written in the first century and with admirable 
knowledge." He began, therefore, to work at the second part of 
the Acts of the Apostles and at St. Paul's Epistles, and some years 
later he published the first of his studies in the life of St. Paul, 
The Church in the Roman Empire before A.n. 170} followed two 
years later by St. Paul the Traveller and the Roman Citizen.^ 
These books, written as they are in a popular style and contain- 
ing several novel and interesting theories, were at once a great 

In the first Ramsay pronounced the ' Travel Document ' as 
unquestionably of the first century, but reserved his opinion as to 
the earUer chapters of the Acts ; in the second he confidently 
ascribed the authorship of the whole book to St. Luke, the com- 
panion of St. Paul. Professor Ramsay's main thesis is that St. 
Paul wrote from the Roman standpoint, and like St. Luke dreamed 
of the subjugation of the Empire " by the new provincial power 
of life and truth, the vitalising influence first for the Roman 
state and later for the world." ^ 

Some of Professor Ramsay's minor theories were based on 
facts already observed by Lightfoot, who had prepared for 
Smith's Dictionary of the Bible an article on the Acts which was 
Lightfoot. not published till 1893.* Lightfoot, for instance, had pointed out 
that the writer of the Acts had close relations with Philippi : ^ 
Professor Ramsay opined that St. Luke himself was a native of 
the place. Again, to take a more famous and a more important 
case, Lightfoot had recognised that " Galatia, as a Roman 
province, would include^ beside the country properly so called, 

The South 



^ London, 1893 (now in its 10th edition,, of which Part I. is devoted to St. 
Paul's travels in Asia Minor. 

* London, 1895 (now in its 14th edition). 
' Pauline and other Studies, p. 200. 

* Smith's Dictionary of the Bible, i. pp. 25-43. 
^ Ibid. i. p. 25. 


Lycaonia, Isauria, the south-eastern district of Phrygia, and a 
portion of Pisidia. Lycaonia is especially mentioned as belonging 
to it, and there is evidence that the cities of Derbe and Lystra in 
particular were included within its boundaries." ^ But Lightfoot 
definitely rejected the view that the Galatian churches of the 
epistle comprise Derbe and Lystra, Iconium and the Pisidian 
Antioch, largely on the ground that in the Acts " Mysia, Phrygia, 
Pisidia are all 'geographical expressions' destitute of any poUtical 
significance " ; ^ that " St. Luke distinctly calls Lystra and 
Derbe cities of Lycaonia, while he no less distinctly assigns 
Antioch to Pisidia ; a convincing proof that in the language of 
the day they were not regarded as Galatian towns " ; and that 
" the expression used in the Acts of St. Paul's visit to these parts " 
— the Phrygian and Galatian country — " shows that the district 
intended was not Lycaonia and Pisidia, but some region which 
might be said to belong either to Phrygia or Galatia, or the parts 
of each contiguous to the other." ^ 

Ramsay, however, both here and still more fully in A Historical Ramsay. 
Commentary on St. PauVs Epistle to the Galatians,* insists that the 
Acts and the Epistles " plunge him into the movements and forces 
acting in Asia Minor during the first century when the Roman 
sphere of duty called Galatia was the great political fact," ^ and 
when the most suitable if not the only title a writer could use to 
cover the inhabitants of all the four cities mentioned would have 
been ' Galatians.' 

The question can hardly yet be regarded as settled, although 
the ' South Galatian ' theory has found an increasing number of 
advocates during recent years.*" Most if not all of the minor 
arguments in its favour may be countered without difficulty from 
the opposite side. The whole question is further involved in 
that of the relation between St. Paul's own account of his visits 
to Jerusalem in the second chapter of the Epistle to the Galatians 

J Galatians, lOtli cd. p. 7. « Ibid. p. 19. » Ibid, p 20. 

* London, 1899. « Pmdine Studies, p. 200. 

* A verj' convenient summarj' of tho arguments on both sides is given by 
Moffatt, Introduction to the Literature of the New Testament (1911), pp. 90 fF. 


and the narrative of the visits in the Acts. From the earhest 
times the later of the two visits recorded in the Epistle has been 
identified with the visit recorded in Acts xv. ; and the dis- 
crepancies between the two accounts are no greater than might 
be expected if they are really independent.^ But to this Professor 
Ramsay on Ramsay demurs. For he has become the champion of St. Luke's 
accuracy, 2 one might almost say of his immunity from mistakes. 
He is ready with all kinds of suggestions to defend him.^ Many 
of these suggestions are fresh and striking, but some of them 
seem to rest on a rather slight foundation. Nor are we prepared 
to adventure with him when he stakes his whole argument on 
some particular interpretation of a phrase that plainly allows of 
a certain degree of indefiniteness. Dr. M. Jones * has called 
attention to an example of this procedure in the case of Professor 
Ramsay's determination of a fixed date in the life of St. Paul 
from Acts xx. 6.^ Here the whole argument rests on the assump- 
tion that the sentence " And we sailed away from Phihppi after 
the days of unleavened bread " can only mean that St. Paul 
started on his journey to Jerusalem on the very first morning 
after " the days of unleavened bread." St. Paul may very well 
have had to wait at least a day or two for a ship. 

In adventures of this kind Sir WilHam is hardly a safe guide. 
But when he keeps close to some clue which his wide research 
into the life of the Roman Empire has put into his hands, we 
could not wish for more skilful leadership. Reference may be 
made to the essay on the " Supposed Trial of St. Paul in Rome " 
contributed by Professor Ramsay to the Expositor in 1913 as an 

^ This is in general the conclusion to which Lightfoot comes, Galatians, pp. 
123 ff. 

^ See The Bearing of Recent Discovery on the Trustworthiness of the New 
Testament (1915), pp. 89, 96. 

3 Ingenious examples will be found in Was Christ born at Bethlehem ? (1898). 
It must be granted that Ramsay has shown that most of the case against St. 
Luke's accuracy in Lk. ii. 1 -3 falls to the ground. The governorship of Quirinius is 
still a doubtful point (T. Nicklin, Classical Review, Dec. 1899, p. 460). Mommsen 
came to the conclusion that Quirinius governed Syria for the first time 3-2 
B.C. {Bearing of Recent Discovery on the Trustworthiness of the N.T. ji. 229). 

* Expositor, 1919 (No. 17), p. 365. ^ Ibid. Ser. V. No. 3, pp. 336 ff. 


example,! an essay which sheds quite a fresh hght upon the 
twenty-eighth chapter of the Acts.^ 

III. The third advance in the study of primitive Christianity ni. Com- 
has come from the field of comparative rehgion. The researches Religion, 
of classical archaeologists and anthropologists have been utilised 
by Professor Loisy, Professor Kirsopp Lake, and Professor Percy 
Gardner in painting a liveUer picture of the rehgious miUeu in which 
the infant Christian society found itself .^ The best introduction 
to the subject is probably Professor Gardner's The Religions 
Experience of St. Paul.^ For an accoimt of the mj^stery rehgions 
themselves we stUl have to rely chiefly upon Continental writers. 
H. A. A. Kennedy's St. Paul and the Mystery Religions (1913) is 
useful until a more satisfactory account appears ; but Dr. Kennedy 
puts the cards on the table in such a way that it is very difficult 
to see whether they are all there and still more difficult to pick 
out the aces. No English work on the subject has yet been 
published which is complete enough to be quite satisfactory. 
A Zeitgeist is an elusive thing, and is not lil<:ely to be caught 
at the first attempt. Great caution is needed, a caution not 
sufficiently exercised by pioneers hke Reitzenstein ; ^ and the 
clearing of the situation due to their not unnatural extrava- 
gances is one of the present tasks of New Testament scholarship. 

1 Expositor, Ser. VIII. No. 5, pp. 264-284. 

^ Outside his own particular province Ramsay is sometimes a little careless ; 
e.g. in Luke, the Physician, p. 58, he quotes as an example of the changes in Mark's 
narrative which may be attributed to St. Luke's medical interest, Lk. viii. 55, 
in the following words : " 3. In Luke viii. 55 the physician mentions that 
Jairus's daughter called for food (cf. Mk. v. 42)." But it is not the daughter but 
our Lord who calls for food ; and the only difference here between the third 
gospel and the second is that in St. Luke the request for food follows immediately 
upon the healing, while in St. Mark it comes after the injunction to secrecy. 
St. Matthew (ix. 26) omits both. Even in connection with Asia Minor some 
loose writing wiU be found in The Bearing of Recent Discovery on the Trust- 
worthiness of the X.7\, e.g. pp. 193 S. 

' A suggestive and widely read book on this subject is Dr. T. R. Glover's 
The Conflict of lieligions in the Early Soman Empire; 1909 (now in its eighth 

* London, 1911. See also The Growth of Christianity, 1907 (especially 
Lecture V.). 

^ Poimandres (1904) ; Die hellenistischen Mysterienreligionen (1910). 


Here it is only possible to glance at the chief publications 
which, appearing since 1890,i have made more or less use of the 
new material which has been produced. We may begin with the 
articles in Dictionaries. Lightfoot's article on the Acts in Smith's 
Bible Dictionary (1893), to which reference has already been made, 
found a not unworthy successor along the same lines in the 
article on the same subject which Professor A. C. Headlam 
contributed to Hastings's Dictionary of the Bible (1898).^ A rival 
to it appeared in the next year (1899) in Schmiedel's article on 
the Acts in the Encyclopaedia Biblica. Schmiedel adopted to 
a great extent the position of the Tubingen School, a position 
which was becoming more and more untenable, as a reviewer of 
Schmiedel's article pointed out.^ 

The articles on St. Paul in the two Dictionaries present 
a similar contrast. That in Hastings's by Professor G. G. 
Findlay is a well-balanced and conservative summary of 
the Apostle's life and works ; that in the Encyclopaedia Biblica, 
on the other hand, in so far as it is by Dr. Hatch, is scholarly 
and suggestive, but in so far as it is by Professor W. C. van 
Manen it follows the ultra-Tiibingen School* on a wild-goose 

Another article of great importance for the study of the New 
Testament is Professor C. H. Turner's article on " Chronology " in 
Hastings's Dictionary. His masterly discussion of the available 
data leads to a system of chronology intermediate between that 

^ For a long list of older -works on the Acts see C. Wordsworth's Greek 
Test. vol. i. part 2, pp. 32-34, (in the ed. of 1872). 

^ That is, three years after the publication of the well-known Commentary 
upon the Epistle to the Romans (in the International Critical Series), the joint 
work of Professor W. Sanday and Professor Headlam, and the most nota.ble 
English commentary of the decade. 

^ In the Church Quarterly Review, 1901. 

* The Dutch school to which van Manen belonged push Baur's theories to 
still more extravagant lengths. Oddly enough, they " stand Baur's theory on 
its head " (H. S. Nash, The Hist, of the Higher Criticism, 1900, p. 159) and use 
the Acts to prove that the Epistle to the Galatians is not genuine. Hilgenfeld, 
on the other hand, Baur's longest - lived disciple, reacts from his teacher's 
theories to a considerable extent and recognises the genuineness of 1 Thess., 
Philippians, and Pliilemou. 


of Lightfoot on the one hand and Harnack on the other, and this 
system has been widely accepted in England as at any rate a 
provisional standard of dating. The only important addition to 
the evidence, a votive inscription found at Delphi and published 
in 1905 which throws light upon the date of Gallio's proconsul- 
ship, does not involve any alteration in Professor Turner's table 
of dates.^ 

The title Horae Synopticae (1899) does not suggest the Acts, Sir John 
but in his book Sir John Hawkins has tabulated linguistic facts an^ 
which have been widely recognised as forming a valid basis for the ^amack; 
thesis that the author of the ' we sections ' of the Acts is the editor 
of the whole book.^ This is by far the simplest and most natural 
explanation of the data presented by Sir John. It has been advo- 
cated with great force by Harnack, whose three books, Luke tJie 
Physician,^ The Ads of the Ajiostles,^ and The Date of the Acts and 
Synoptic Gospels,^ are indispensable for the study of these works. 
In these three volumes Harnack's dating of the Acts becomes 
progressively earher : in the first the date suggested is a.d. 80 ; 
in the second, 65 ; in the third, 62 at the latest. 

The last date is that which is adopted in one of the three best Date, 
commentaries in English upon the Acts, that of R. B. Rackham 
in the Westminster Series, published 1902. Of the other two, 
T. E. Page's was published long before Harnack's work appeared,^ 
and suggests a date somewhat later than a.d. 70 ; and Professor 
Knowling's in the Expositor's Greek Testament '^ leaves the ques- 
tion open but apparently ^ inchnes to agree with Harnack and 
Rackham. Dr. A. C. McGifEert of New York, formerl}'- a pupil 

^ Professor Turner discusses this inscription in his inaugural lecture as 
Dean Ireland's Professor, The Sturly of the New Testament, 1883 and 1920, 
Oxford, 1920, pp. 15 f . The inscription survives only in fi agments. The largest 
of them was published by A. Nikitsky in 1894-95, and was re published 
together with three smaller fragments by E. Bourguct, De rebus Delphicis, 1905, 
pp. 63 f. Sec Deissmann, St. Paul (Eng. transl. Appendix I. pp. 235 ff.). 

2 Op. oil. 2nd ed. pp. 182 fi. ' English translation, 1907. 

« English translation, 1909. ^ English translation, 1911. 

8 ISSti. It was reprinted nine times between 1880 and 1900. '' 1900. 

** P. 35. Professor Salmon, the most accomplished all-round scholar of his 
day, took the same view {Introduction to the N.T., 1885). 




St. Luke 



The organi- 
sation of 
the early 

of Professor Harnack's, in his careful and independent study of 
the ApostoUo Age decides that the indications point to the 
reign of Domitian as the time when the Acts was composed.^ 
Professor Burkitt, on the other hand, agrees with Schmiedel in 
thinking that the author of the Acts used the Antiquities of 
Josephus,^ and he therefore dates his work between a.d. 95 
and 105. 

Passing on now to useful monographs upon various points we 
shall find it impossible to do justice to them all. We can merely 
call attention to a few of the more influential. 

As long ago as 1882 ^ Hobart of DubUn pubhshed his 
researches on The Medical Language of St. Luke. On linguistic 
grounds he sought to prove " that the gospel according to St. 
Luke and the Acts of the Apostles were written by the same 
person, and that the writer was a medical man." It has been 
recently shown ^ by Professor H. J. Cadbury and Professor G. F. 
Moore that his argument from a comparison of St. Luke's vocabu- 
lary with that of Galen and other medical writers breaks down, 
although a large number of scholars, including such great names 
as Harnack and Zahn, had been considerably impressed by it. 
The early tradition, however, that St. Luke was a physician still 
remains, and some of the details observed by Hobart and others, 
e.g. in their comparisons of St. Luke's account with that of the 
other two synoptists, are still not without significance in coimec- 
tion with it. 

The subject of the organisation of the early Church has called 

^ A History of Christianity in the Apostolic Age (1897), pp. 437 f. 

^ See The Gospel History and its Transmission (1907), pp. 105 ff. Professor 
A. S. Peake apparently holds the same opmion (.4 Critical Introduction to the 
New Testament, 1909, pp. 133 ff.). For a statement of the case against St. 
Luke's use of Josephus, see C.Q.R., April 1919, pp. 89 ff. 

3 Hobart was by no means the first to work along this line. James Smith, of 
JordanhiU, in his Dissertation on the Gospels notices details in St. Luke's account 
"which it was natural for a medical man to inquire into " (p. 269), and refers 
to an article by Walker in the Gentleman'' s Magazine of June 1841. 

* Harvard Studies, vi. Part I., 1919. In Part IL (1920) Professor 
Cadbury goes on to a similar detailed study of St. Luke's treatment of his 


forth several interesting studies. We have Hatch's Organisation 
of the Early Church (1880), maintaining that the Bishop was 
connected more with administration than with worship ; ^ 
followed by Gore's Ministry of the Christian Church (1888) ; ^ 
later by Hort's Christian Ecclesia (1897) ; later still by H. F. 
Hamilton's suggestive study in The People of God (1912) ; finally 
by the Essays on the Early History of the Church atid the Ministry, 
edited by Dr. Swete (1918), which is likely to be the starting point 
of any further inquiries into the subject which may be made 
in England. 

On the Jewish side of the early Church we have Hort's 
Judaistic Christianity (1894) and H. St. J. Thackeray's Relation 
of St. Paul to Contemporary Jewish Thought (1900). 

With regard to the important literary question of the The sources 
sources of the first part of the Acts we have Professor K. first part of 
Lake's article in Hastings's Dictionary of the Apostolic Church,^ ^*^*^' 
which builds upon Professor Harnack's above-mentioned Acts 
of the Apostles ; and we have also Professor Torrey's impressive 
attempt to prove that an Aramaic document* lies behind 
Acts i.-xv. ; 5 but Professor Burkitt's trenchant criticisms in 
the Journal of Theological Studies ^ will probably restore most 
students to their former lack of con^'iction upon the subject. 

Professor Burkitt's work on the Western Text ' and Dr. Miscei- 
Rendel Harris's study of Codex Bezae ^ have an important ^^orks"" 

^ The book gave considerable offence, e.g. to the reviewer in the C.Q.B. 
(July 1881, pp. 409 ff.), who felt that Hatch had done no more than discover 
" external connections which make the bishop an almoner, and the Eucharist 
a charity supper." 

^ Which was much more favourably received by the C.Q.R. (April 1889). 

3 1916, vol. i. p. 23. 

* Dr. J. H. Bernard once expressed his opinion with regard to the early 
chapters of the Acts, that " the hypothesis of an underlj*ing Semitic document 
affords at once the readiest and the most complete explanation of the fact.. " 
{St. MargareVs Lectures on the Criticism of the New Testament, 1002, p. 227). 

* C. C. Torrey, " The Composition and Date of Acts " (Harvard Theological 
Studies, i., 1916). 

« J.T.S. vol. XX., 1918-1919, pp. 320-329. See also J. W. Falconer in the 
Expositor, 1920 (Series VIII. vol. xix. pp. 271 ff.). 

' Texts and Studies, iv. 3. « Ibid. ii. 1. 


bearing on other problems ^ in the Acts beside the textual one, 
but we can do no more than name them here. 

Bishop Chase's Hulsean lectures on The Credibility of the Acts 
(1902) may be mentioned for their convenient summary of fairly 
famiUar evidence ; Mr. C. W. Emmet's Commentary upon the 
Epistle to the Galatians (1912) for the freshness of its treatment of 
well-worn subjects ; and Dr. R. St. J. Parry's edition of the 
Pastoral Epistles (1920) for its notable defence of their much- 
disputed authenticity. A regiment of worthy successors to 
Conybeare and Howson may serve to bring up the rear of this 
straggling review : first, Mr. Baring-Gould's Study of St. Paul, 
his Character and Opinions (1897), in which Mr. Baring-Gould 
appears to be a little perverse ; next, Dr. B. W. Bacon's Story of 
St. Paul (1904), in which Dr. Bacon is very much on his guard 
against being deceived by the author of the Acts. We may then 
group together Mr. J. R. Cohu's St. Paul in the Light of Modern 
Research (1911) ; Dr. David Smith's The Life and Letters of St. 
Paul (1920), an attractive work in which the author shows that 
he keeps in close touch with the prevailing currents of the best 
accredited criticism ; and Professor A. H. M'Neile's St. Paul, 
his Life, Letters and Christian Doctrine (1920). All three 
are eminently readable and may be recommended as useful 
introductions to the subject. Last of all, and in a class by 
itself, we may put the remarkable essay on St. Paul published 
w. R. Inge, by Dean Inge in his Outspoken Essays.^ There has been nothing 
like it since Matthew Arnold's St. Paid and Protestantism.^ As 
we read it we can scarcely fail to be struck with the advance that 
has been made since the days when Dean Farrar's Life was criti- 
cised as giving a picture of the man rather than of the apostle. 
Looking back now over the two centuries which have elapsed 
since British scholarsliip began to learn from the Deists to treat 
the books of the Bible as books, we see that the knowledge 
of the period covered by the Acts has been pushed forward 

^ The most familiar example is that of the Apostolic Decree (Acts xv.). 
See {e.g.) C. H. Turner, The Study of the New Testament, 1SS3 and 1920, p. 30. 
2 1919, pp. 205-229. ^ 1370. 


steadily if somewhat slowly. British scholarship has shown British 
little tendency to originate startling hypotheses like those eonscrvV^ 
of Baur,i although it has generally learned something from *'^''' 
them. It has rather devoted itself to the more concrete 
problems of textual criticism and archaeology, and its general 
temper has been conservative. 

At the present time it is probably true to say that proposi- Kesuita 
tions such as the following would be accepted by the great accepted, 
majority of British scholars : 

(i.) That the Acts is a product not of the second century but 
of the first : 

(ii.) That there is a very strong probability that the author 
of the ' we sections ' is the author both of the Acts and of the 
third gospel : 

(iii.) That he possesses a great deal of accurate information 
with regard to St. Paul's journeys, some of it being first-hand : 

(iv.) That whatever be his sources for the early chapters of 
the Acts these " Scenes from Early Days " ^ are well chosen and 
consistent, and give a picture of the march of events which is 
at any rate, on the whole, correct in outline. 

It is also widely recognised that further advance can only 
take place through close and exact study, not only of the Apostolic 
Church itself, but also of its milieu and of the Church of the 
succeeding age.^ Such study makes ever-increasing demands 
upon the equipment of the scholar and can only be carried forward 
by the combined efforts of the whole company of faithful students 
throughout the world. 

^ Cf. the present attitude of caution with regard to the work of such scholars 
as Loisy, which nevertheless has already exerted a very considerable influence 
(see G. Tyrrel, Christianity at the Cross Roads, 1909, p. 44). 

2 The phrase is Professor Burkitt's. 

^ See Professor C. H. Turner's inaugural lecture aa Dean Ireland's Professor 
of Exegesis in the University of Oxford (1920 — already referred to above), 
especially pp. 8 and 20. It is very interesting to compare this lecture with that 
delivered by the late Dr. Sanday on his appointment to the same Professorship 
in 1883. 

VOL. II 2 F 





The preface has explained the purpose of this appendix, of which 
the first part is by Mr. G. G. Coulton, and the second by the 
Editors. It is intended to throw some light on two cognate prob- 
lems of psychology. How far does tradition create, rather than 
commemorate, in its description of great personalities ? How far 
can writers be trusted, even when they wish to be truthful in their 
treatment of non-literary sources ? A book dealing with this sub- 
ject by a specialist in psychology would greatly advance the under- 
standing of history, and would render much ignorant criticism 
impossible. The examples of the Saint of Assisi or the Servant 
Maid of Suffolk may be taken as indications of what is needed in a 
more complete collection of narratives necessary to elucidate the 
problem of the way in which tradition almost unconsciously alters 
facts in the proccvss of its development. 



» By G. G. CouLTON 

When Professor Barzellotti, in 1885, published his brief history 
of the movement connected with David Lazzaretti of Arcidosso, he 
called this book " a contribution to the embryology of religious 
phenomena.'" Early Franciscan history presents a far wider, and 
even more interesting, field for this study. 

It is only in comparatively recent times that due importance has 
been given, by conservative students who are in no sense extremists, 
to the twenty or more years which elapsed between the death of 
Christ and the very earliest of existing records. Even those who 
have recognised the extreme probability of a considerable develop- 
ment during those years have often been too ready to assume that 
this movement had been all along in harmony with the course of 
later developments, so that the Christianity of Ignatius might safely 
be described as Primitive Christianity writ large. They have taken 
for granted a general unity of direction, and have undidy ignored 
the possibility that this blank in Christian history may conceal 
very considerable deflections from the original Christian orientation — 
nay, more, even the impossibility of its concealing an actual volte- 
face. Here it is that the analogy of Franciscan history is so valu- 
able. In those records we can trace, first, how easily the written 
story of a whole generation might have perished, and, secondly, how 
grievously we should have erred, in that case, by inferring Francis's 
actual doctrines too confidently from the actual state of his Order 
a generation after his death. 

The first of these points may be most clearly grasped, perhaps, 
if we marshal the earliest Christian records, and their Franciscan 
analogues, side by side. Amidst all our uncertainties as to the 
former, there is yet sufficient agreement on nearly all hands to render 
such a comparison possible and profitable ; and it seems safest, as an 
automatic corrective of possible bias, to choose the dates given by 
Professor C. H. Turner in his article on " Chronology " in Hastings's 
Dictionary of the Bible and in his Inaugural Lecture (Oxford, 1921). 
The uncertainties of date, great as they are in many cases, will not 
render such a schematic representation entirely valueless, so long as 
we bear steadily in mind that its truth can only be approximative. 


Years from 
Death of 


Gap o/20 years. 





' Galatians and other 
Pauline Epistles ; 

also perhaps the 

Petrine REanNis- 







Gap ofQ years. 



Gap of 5 years. 



Luke and Acts. 


Gap of 15 years. 



Gap of 10 years. 



Most other books of 
the New Testa- 
1 ment. 





[St. F.'s own writings.] 
[1216-21. Jacques de Vitry, two letters 

and Historia Occidental is.'\ 
1226. DEATH OF ST. FBANCIS, and 
Circular Letter of Elias. 

Gap of 2 years. 

1228-29. Celano, Vita Prior. 
1230. BuU, " Quo Elongati." 

Gap of 14 years. 
[1244]. RoTULi Leonis. 

Gap of 3 years. 
1247. Celano, Vita Secunda. 

Gap of 8 years. 
[1255]. Tractatus de Miraculis. 

Gap of 5 years. 


(Nar bonne.) 


Gap of 5 years. 

Gap of 14 years. 
[1280]. Liber de Laudibus. 

Gap of 38 years. 

1318. Speculum Perfectionis. 

Gap of^ years. 

[1322-28]. Fac Secundum Exemplar. 

Gap of 4 years. 
[1326]. Fioretti. 

Starting from this table, let us note the differences and analogies. Differences 
(1) The first and greatest difference, that of the personalities of """^^ *"*'°- 
the two Founders, will be present to every reader's mind ; it i.s pe^onaiity. 



(2) Francis- 
cans not 

(3) Actual 
writings of 
Francis sur- 

(4) Need 
felt of his- 

indeed often pleaded as a bar to any serious comparison whatever. 
The present writer feels, on the contrary, that our only way of 
getting at the true Christ is to deal with him as the man ; to recog- 
nise the actual recorded limitations of his knowledge, and therefore 
of his pre-knowledge ; and to assume, in default of evidence to the 
contrary, that as Christianity was preached by human tongues, so 
also it was left to carry on by human methods its struggle for survival 
against other religions. On no other supposition can we account 
for what unfriendly critics call the present bankruptcy of Christianity 
— a bankruptcy which (if such indeed it be) the historian can trace 
almost from its earliest recorded history. On the other hand, to 
admit the claim for Francis as the most Christ-like man since Christ, 
is, in the judgment of the present writer, to emphasise the enormous 
gulf between the two persons. 

(2) The second difference, almost equally important from our 
present point of view, is that Francis never resisted unto blood ; and 
that he and the vast majority of his disciples lived and died iu favour 
with the Church of their birth. Not from any tinge of personal 
timidity, but from pure kindness of heart and sense of solidarity, he 
shrank from conflict with a hierarchy and a priesthood which needed 
reform quite as much as the Jewish Church needed it at the Christian 
era. We possess, therefore, an official biography written only a few 
months after his death by command of the Pope himself ; indeed 
we can see much of his history through a succession of official docu- 
ments which have no parallel in early Christian history until we come 
to the Pliny-Trajan correspondence of 112 a.d. 

(3) Partly for this same reason, partly because those later times 
have drifted far more documentary wreckage down to us than has 
survived from an age twelve centuries farther removed from our 
own, we have actual writings of St. Francis, with such contemporary 
and subcontemporary descriptions of him and his Order as are 
almost altogether lacking for the study of Christian origins. These, 
in the foregoing conspectus, are printed in thick brackets [ ], 

(4) These circumstances have to some extent directly affected 
the comparison which is our chief interest in this present essay. We 
are mainly concerned with studying, in the Franciscan legend, the 
natural action and reaction of centrifugal and centripetal forces. 
In the earlier days, literary individualism breeds frequent diverg- 
ences, and even discrepancies, in the story. Then, by more or 
less conscious reaction, the organised society feels the necessity of 
historical standardisation. In proportion as the Founder's imme- 
diate personal influence is withdrawn, in proportion as his ideal 
becomes diluted by contamination with other ideals and practices, 
his official successors are compelled to supply that which is lacking 
in unity of the spirit by tightening the bonds of disciplinary 


uniformity. We can find few better illustrations of this, in all 
religious history, than an anecdote of Francis himself which has 
been preserved by Wadding under the year 1258, but has received 
too little attention. 

In that year died brother Stephen, who had lived with St. a story of 
Francis, and cooked for him, in one of those little mountain hermit- *^® ^^^^ 
ages to which he loved to retire in the later days of his life, and who 
solemnly deposed as follows before the Provincial Minister of Tus- 
cany : " I, brother Stephen, dwelt for a few months in a certain 
hermitage with St. Francis and other brethren, to care for their beds 
and their kitchen ; and this was our manner of life by command of 
the Founder. We spent the forenoon hours in prayer and silence, 
until the sound of a board [struck with a mallet, like a gong] called 
us to dinner. Now the Holy Master was wont to leave his cell about 
the third hour ; and, if he saw no fire in the kitchen, he would go down 
into the garden and pluck a handful of herbs, which he brought home, 
saying, ' Cook these, and it will be well with the Brethren.' And 
whereas at times I was wont to set before him eggs and milk food 
which the faithful had sent us, with some sort of gravy-stew {cum 
aliquo jusculento), then he would eat cheerfully with the rest and say, 
' Thou hast done too much. Brother ; I will that thou prepare nought 
for the morrow, nor do aught in my kitchen.' So I, following his 
precepts absolutely, in all points, cared for nothing so much as to 
obey that most holy man ; when, therefore, he came and saw the 
table laid with divers crusts of bread, he would begin to eat gaily 
thereof, but presently he would chide me that I brought no more, 
asking me why I had cooked nought, whereto I answered, ' For that 
thou, Father, badest me cook none.' But he would say, ' Dear son, 
discretion is a noble virtue, nor shouldst thou always fulfil all that 
thy superior biddeth thee, especially when he is troubled by any 
passion.' " 

The very human interest of this story, and the very charm that 
it adds to the Saint's personality, makes us realise more fully the 
almost insoluble problem which he set to himself and his Order. 
Within the walls of that hermitage, or anywhere else where his 
immediate influence was felt, it was possible to live not only without 
thought for the morrow, but even without consistency from hour to 
hour ; whithersoever the Saint's impulse led him, the rest followed 
without efiort. But no Order could exist on such a basis ; mission- 
ary success at one end involved, of necessity, some corresponding 
failure at the other end, and the mere multiplication of disciples 
compelled Franciscanism to become partly untrue to the original 

A similar phenomenon is clearly traceable in the earlier Christian 
records ; but we must expect to find peculiarities in Franciscanism 


corresponding to the differences detailed here above. The know- 
ledge which official outsiders had of the Order would tend to retard 
Franciscan disintegration ; Gregory IX., first as Cardinal-Protector 
and then as Pope, helped to fix certain points which remained stable 
amid many uncertainties. Far weaker, yet not altogether negligible, 
would be the influence of public opinion as shown by contemporary 
chroniclers. Koger of Wendover's description shows general outside 
ignorance on many important points ; indeed, the friars themselves 
were very secretive in their dealings with outsiders.^ The Rules of 
the Order and St. Francis's Testament (even after Gregory IX. had 
deprived this document of all legally binding force in his bull 
Qico Elongati of 1230^) supplied definite points which, however the 
friars might neglect them in practice or try to circumvent them 
in theory, had always to be reckoned with. Moreover, as will 
presently be seen. Church politics rendered it more important to 
keep dissidents within the Franciscan Order than to cast them 
forth as heretics. We must bear in mind, therefore, that the 
Franciscan historical tradition was, from the first, a rudimentary 
vertebrate. When, on the other hand, we turn to the Christian 
historical tradition, the evidence seems to point to an organism 
comparatively invertebrate at its birth and in its early stages. To 
adopt a slightly different metaphor, there were certain mechanical 
checks upon Franciscan variations which we cannot trace in early 
(5) Difier- (5) While this earlier vertebration of Franciscanism, if we may 

ence be- go term it, must certainly have worked to a considerable extent 
idLaTan/ against change, yet it was far from preventing change altogether, 
the actual, even upon essential points. We have, therefore, in Franciscan 
history, a clearly traceable contrast between the ideal and the actual ; 
between what the Order aimed at and what it actually became. It 
is here that the story is of such importance by reason of the analogies 
which it will suggest. Though we must beware of the easy a priori 
assumption that every stage of Franciscan evolution implies a similar 
stage in early Christianity, yet we may most legitimately infer that 
every such stage may possibly have had its primitive analogue ; 
and we may scientifically exploit this possibility in all cases where it 
is not ruled out, or at least rendered highly improbable, by the 
difference of attendant circumstances in the two movements w^hich 
we are comparing. When we see how flatly men argued, while 
claiming to be orthodox Franciscans, against certain doctrines of 
Francis, we may legitimately look very closely, at least, for the 

1 I have brought this out in Fro7n St. Francis to Dante, chap. xxv. (p. 319 
of the first edition). 

2 The Testament is printed by Bohmer and translated in Fr. Cuthberfs 
Lije ; the bull Qiio Elongati is printed in the appendix to Sabatier's Spec. Perf. 


possibility of similar distortions of Christ's tenets by even the earliest 

With this preface, let us now go through the Franciscan docu- Franciscan 
ments in such summary detail as our space will permit. In early °''"™^" ^• 
Franciscan literary history, as in early Christian, many points are 
still doubtful. In those cases there is no room for discussion here ; 
but enough references will be given to enable the reader to follow up 
all important debatable points. 

Francis's own writings are in harmony with the other evidence ; Francis's 
but, by themselves, they wovdd certainly not have enabled us to ^"^'"g^' 
reconstruct his unique personality. ^ Much the same may be said of 
what we learn from Cardinal Jacques de Vitry and other contempor- 
aries. Their testimony is of the utmost corroborative value ; but, 
if Francis had quarrelled with the Church and had been extinguished 
as Peter Waldo was extinguished, we should have been left with 
almost as vague an impression of his personality. Elias's circular 
letter, on the other hand, is a document almost unique in earlier 
church history ; it contains the description of a miracle (the Stig- 
mata) by a person of high responsibility, written within a few hours 
of its actual observation, and under circumstances which might 
easily have provoked protest if the writer had indulged in glaring 

Celano's Vita Prior is a work of very great value. Celano himself Ceiano's 
had not seen much of Francis personally ; his rhetorical skill probably ^ ''° Prior. 
recommended him more than anything else for this particular 
task ; and the papal choice would, of necessity, bring him implicitly 
under certain official restrictions. We must not exaggerate the 
contrast on this point between the first and second Lives, but it would 
be still more misleading to ignore it altogether. 

Half a generation later, the officials of the Order felt the in- The Three 
completeness of this first sketch. Great changes had taken place ^°^- 
in the interval, with struggles comparable in bitterness and import- P*^"'""*- 
ance (though not in any other way analogous) to the struggle between 
Early Christianity and Gnosticism. The rule of Frate Elia, and the 
revolt by which his domination was overthrown, were not only 
symptoms, but also causes of considerable changes of direction. 
Those who had known Francis personally were fast dying off. There- 
fore the General Chapter of 1244, under Crescenzio da Jesi, appealed 
for fresh first-hand evidence, which was supplied mainly by three 
intimate companions of the Saint, Leo, Angelo, and Ruffino. From 
this material, with their approval, and from other sources also, a 

^ This is true, I think, even of the three Eules, the Testament, and the 
Epislola ad quemdam Ministrum. Moreover, it must be remembered that, if 
Francis had broken away from the Church, he would probably not have lived 
to write any of these, except, perhaps, the first Rule. 


Vita Secunda was compiled by Celano, who had again been chosen 
as the official biographer.^ Goetz is probably right in contending 
that this Vita Secunda marks far less of a conscious reaction against 
the tendencies of the Vita Prior than Sabatier had assumed, and 
that, in the main, it holds faithfully to its professed purpose of 
supplementing, not correcting, its predecessor. At the same time, 
even apart from the contributions by Leo and his companions, 
Celano's own share in this Vita Secunda shows a noticeable change 
of attitude towards Elias and his policy. 

The Leo- But the main historical interest centres now in the Leo-group ; 

papers, jj^ ^^le contributions of these early companions who had steadily 
resisted the de-Franciscanisation of the Order. Leo had come into 
collision with Elias soon after Francis's death, by protesting in word 
and deed against the collection of vast sums of money to build that 
magnificent convent and basilica which still commands the city of 
Assisi ; Elias had caused him to be scourged and expelled from the 
city.^ That Elias's hand lay heavy on all dissidents, we learn not only 
from Salimbene (pp. 104, 158), but from a letter quoted by Wadding 
(an. 1239), in which the General asks the Pope's approval for strong 
measures against those who resist him in the name of strict observ- 
ance, " men who, on account of their discipleship and intimacy with 
our holy father Francis, are held in high esteem both within and 
without the Order." It is evident, therefore, that the testimony of 
this group must have a very special historical value. Let us begin 
by summing up what now seems practically certain with regard to 
these Leo-papers, as we may call them for brevity's sake.^ 

The writings thus furnished to the General Chapter were not all 
utilised by Celano.* The originals, in whole or in part, were kept 
for some time at the convent of San Damiano, where Clare and her 
nuns were friendly to the Spirituals. After a while, some at least 

^ This transpires from the following sources : Leg. 3 Soc, Prefatory Epistle ; 
2 Celano, Preface and last chapter ; Salimbene, p. 176 ; Analecta Franciscana, 
iii. p. 262. Even if we deny the authenticity of the Prefatory Epistle, for 
which I can see no valid reason, the other evidence is explicit enough on this 

2 Glassberger's Chronicle {Ana. Frs. ii. 45). Angelo Clareno, in his Hist. 
Sept. Trib., tells us how St. Antony of Padua was scourged also, and Caesarius 
of Speyer, who had helped Francis to compose the Rule of 1221, was imprisoned 
and finally killed by the brutality of his gaoler. Tocco (p. 440) doubts the 
truth of this, but there is no great intrinsic improbability in the story. 

* For the evidence as to these Botuli Leonis (otherwise called Cedulae, 
Dicta, Verba, Scripta Leonis), see Goetz, pp. 151-57, and Little, Guide, pp. 17-21. 

* Celano utilised a little more than half the material which was collected 
later into the Speculum Perfectionis. This latter compilation contains 124 
chapters, of which 85 furnish the materials for 77 out of the 167 chapters in the 
second part of the Vita Secunda. 


of these notes came into the possession of Ubertino da Casale, the 
great Spiritual leader, who refers also to an autograph volume of 
Leo's writings in the friars' library at Assisi. These Leo-papers 
are appealed to, as against the growing relaxations of the Order, by 
a whole series of zealous friars, from Petrus Johannis Olivi in about 
1280 to Alvarus Pelagius about 1330. In 1318, a Spiritual compiled 
from them a little book called Speculum Perfectionis}- This contains, The Svecu- 
with the seventy-five chapters utilised by Celano, thirty-nine more lum Perjec- 
which Celano has neglected, but which are often of the highest '*'""*■ 
importance. Goetz (p. 216), who goes as far as is reasonably possible 
in contradiction to Sabatier, decides that, of the one hundred 
and twenty-four chapters in the Speculum, ten can claim with 
reasonable certainty to be prior to Celano, five seem posterior, 
and " about fifty " cases must remain doubtful for lack of 
conclusive evidence. Minocchi reckons that eighty chapters of 
the book stand practically as they were written in 1246 ; and I 
cannot help thinking that later critics will agree more nearly 
with this conclusion. Many of Goetz's detailed arguments seem 
captious and unconvincing, and once at least his facts need 
correction ; ^ I cannot help thinking that subsequent criticism will 
rate the priority of the Speculum considerably higher than he does. 
For the present, however, it is sufficient to point out that the Specu- 
lum contains a mass of first-hand evidence from some of the Saint's 
earliest companions, sometimes evidently retouched ; ^ retouched 
also, perhaps, in other places where no evidence has survived to 
betray the alterations ; but, on the whole, bringing us nearer to the 
real Francis than anything else written since bis death. 

Side by side with the Speculum we must consider the so-called 
Legend of the Three Companions, around which controversy still rages. 
Earlier critics, including Sabatier, had taken it to be what its prefatory 
letter professes — a book composed by three of the Saint's earhcst in- 
timates, Leo, Angelo, and Ruffino, in 1246. But Fr. Van Ortroy, in 
Analecla Bollandiana, vol. xix. (1900), undertook to show that it is 
" une piece apocryphe, dont les parties sont assez habilement agencccs, 
mais qui n'a aucun rapport avec les premiers disciples de S. Fran9ois " 
(p. 138). This thesis was combated by Sabatier in vol. 75 of the 
Revue Hislorique (1901) ; by Minocchi in Archivio Storico Italiano, fifth 
series, vols. xxiv. and xxvi. (1899 and 1900) ;* and by Tilemann in his 

1 Which Sabatier, misled by a false date in one of his MSS., attributed at 
first to 1227. 

2 P. 178, where his generalisations about the term generalis minister are con- 
tradicted by Francis's Letter to the General Chapter (Bohmer, pp. 61. 15, and 62. 3). 

3 E.g. it is difficult to explain the mistakes as to St. Francis's age and the 
year of his death in chap, cxxiv. 

* He maintains the priority of 3 Soc. to 2 Cel., and attributes 3 Soc. to John 
of Ceperano, 


Speculum Perfeciionis, especially pp. 109-119. The discussion 
is far too complicated for this place ; here we can only note : (a) Even 
those who doubt the genuineness of the prefatory letter are unable to 
point out a motive for the forgery. Van Ortroy admits that the 
supposed forger " n'a pas I'air d'avoir agi dans un but pol6mique quel- 
conque," and that we may possibly have here a genuine letter " qui se 
rattache a quelque document franciscain aujourd'hui perdu " (p. 120). 
(6) His elaborate parallel extracts from the 3 Socii, side by side with 1 
and 2 Celano, Julian of Speyer, Bonaventura, Bernard of Bessa, and 
others whom he supposes the " forger " to have pillaged, have given to 
others besides Sabatier the impression that this " forger " is reaUy the 
prior author in most, if not all, these cases. On the other hand, (c) the 
warmest defenders of 3 Socii are compelled to admit that the jirefatory 
letter, promising a large number of new details and apologising for the 
want of sequence in this material, stands in flat contradiction to the 
rest of the book, which is more remarkable for consecutive order than 
for novelty. The truth may perhaps be found in a conclusion, borne 
out to some extent by Tilemann's arguments, that this prefatory letter 
of Leo and his friends was originally attached to the material contributed 
in answer to the appeal of 1244 — in other words, to those papers which 
we now know mainly through 2 Celano and the Speculum. With regard 
to the body of 3 Socii, I should venture to suggest that it may represent 
an earlier sketch begun by Leo immediately after St. Francis's death, 
and left incomplete because Celano's official life rendered it superfluous. 
Such a book might conceivably be referred to by the portion here 
itaUcised in Ubertino da Casale's assertion that all his own tenets could 
be proved to be those of the real Francis, since " omnia . . . patent per 
sua [Francisci] verba expressa, quae per sanchim virum Leonem ejus 
socimn tarn de mandato sancti patris quam etiam de devoiione predicti 
fratris [Leofiis] fuerunt solemniter conscripta in libro qui Jmhehir in 
armaria fratrum de Assisio, et in rotulis ejus, quas apud me habeo, 
manu ejusdem fratris Leonis conscriptis, in quibus optime beati Fran- 
cisci intentio quoad paupertatem regulae declaratur contra omnes 
abusiones et transgressiones." ^ Such a book- — kept in the official 
library at Assisi, and not only, Hke the other Leo-papers, preserved by 
such Spirituals as the nuns of St. Damian's or Ubertino himself — 
would naturally be exploited by all biographers, from Celano to Bernard 
of Bessa ; and this would account for the apparent priority of the 
3 Socii : the compiler of this book, as we now have it, used the Leo- 
origmal more faithfully than Celano or the rest. 

But our decision on this point need not greatly affect our parallel 
between the Franciscan and New Testament records. The acceptance 
of Van Ortroy's theory would only strengthen two of our main points — 
the ease with which these early records become contaminated and almost 

^ See Goetz, p. 155. Goetz convinces himself, like Van Ortroy, that the 
3 Socii forms of the stories are not prior but posterior ; but he ignores the tell- 
tale differences of stj^Ie, and his arguments are, to me, most unconvincing. 


inextricably intermingled,^ and the superior chances of survival enjoyed 
by documents in which the dominant majority recognises its own point 
of view. This will be most painfully apparent if we admit Van Ortroy's 
contentions to the full, and decide that there is nothing in the 3 Socii 
or the Speculum which was not already in the official Celano, to whom, 
therefore, all other biographers go back, from Julian of Speyer to the 
author of the Golden Legend. " De quelque maniere que Ton envisage 
la filiation des anciennes Vies de S. FranQois d' Assise . , . c'est toujours 
a Celano que Ton aboutit, directement ou indirectement, comme au 
premier aimeau de la chaine. . . . L'influence si notoire et si profonde 
de Celano se manifeste pareUlement dans le domaine liturgique " (pp. 

If all this be indeed true, then the Franciscan legend has been Official 
even more thoroughly " officialised " than we have judged it to be gj^°^-^^ 
on other grounds. Such, in brief, is Franciscan literary history ventura. 
until 1260, thirty-four years after the Saint's death. In that year 
the General Chapter met at Narbonne, under the generalate of St. 
Bonaventura, who had been elected three years earlier. This election 
had great political significance ; John of Parma, the previous 
General (1247-57), had strongly supported the Spiritual minority ; ^ 
there had thus been a decade of great friction between these and the 
Conventuals, and St. Bonaventura had been chosen not only on 
account of his intellectual distinction, but even mainly, perhaps, as 
a moderate who would work hard to reconcile the two extremes.^ 
The Chapter of 1260 recognised that the Spirituals found their 
strongest documentary support in the Leo-papers and the early 
biographies of St. Francis ; therefore it decreed a standardisation of 
the legend in the interests of uniformity, which (it was hoped) might 
be also the interests of peace. It was decided " that the variety of 
many legends should be removed, and that he [Bonaventura] should 
compose a harmonious, weighty, and genuine history from those 
different fragments of histories which were current concerning St. 
Francis." ^ This was aimed not only at the more definitely spiritual 

1 For this multiplicity of documents, in different combinations, see Van 
Ortroy, I.e. pp. 119-123; Little, Guide, pp. 15, 19-22; Fr. Cuthbcrt, Life, 
pp. 435-39 ; and the prefaces to Sabatiei-'s editions of the Speculum Perfectionis 
and the Actus. Besides those mentioned in my text, the most important of 
these is the so-called Anonyimis Perusinus, closely akin to the 3 Socii. 

2 The Spirituals (or Zelanti) clung to the original simplicity of the Franciscan 
ideal, and, in their zeal, tended even to exaggerate this. They dwelt mainly in 
hermitages : hence the relaxed majority of the Order were termed Conventuals, 
in contradistinction to mere solitaries. 

3 He met with the usual fate of the moderates ; Angelo Clareno {A.L.K.G. 
ii. 280) shows us that he is the unnamed villain of chapter xlviii. in the 
Fioreiti ; this was the light in which ho appeared to the Spirituals. 

4 Wadding, an. 1260, § 18. 


writings, but even at Celano, concerning whom Wadding has pre- 
served a notice under the year 1256 (§ 4), that a good many friars 
were scandalised in these days at the public reading of his Vita 
Secunda. Bonaventura, thus commissioned, produced a Legenda 
Major and a Legenda Minor, both of which were submitted to the 
General Chapter of 1263, and formally approved. The next step 
was even more significant. The General Chapter of 1266 decreed 
the destruction of all the pre-Bonaventuran legends, even, so far as 
possible, all copies found outside the Franciscan Order. -"^ It fortun- 
ately proved impossible to enforce this in all its strictness ; yet the 
decree was so far successful that " it took just six hundred and 
thirty-two years to recover all the scattered fragments of Celano 's 
legends of St. Francis," ^ and that the Leo-papers survived only 
under protest, and in a disconnected fragmentary condition.^ 

Early friars, if of a literary turn, often made up little common- 
place-books of their own.'* It was natural that such collections 
should most frequently deal with the life and sayings of the Founder ; 
again, the fullest and best-arranged of such collections would natur- 
ally be copied from pen to pen, until they sometimes rivalled even 
the official publications in popularity. They were anonymous, not 
only because nothing had any legal right to exist side by side with 
Bonaventura's two Legends, but also because nobody cared much 
who had compiled them ; their aim was edificatory rather than 
historical in the modern sense. The same causes which conditioned 
their birth controlled their growth also ; each possessor or transcriber 
dealt with them as he pleased, adding or omitting or altering accord- 
ing to his own taste. Thus, though the MSS. fall into definite groups, 

^ Van Ortroy has attempted to prove that this refers only to the liturgical 
legends ; but this view is irreconcilable with the actual evidence, and is dis- 
missed as untenable by such moderate conservatives as D'Alen§on (Celano, 
Introd. p. xliii) and Father Cuthbert {Life of St. F. p. 430). 

2 Fr. Paschal Robinson, Short Introduction, p. 10. Cf. D'Alen9on (Celano, 
Introd. p. xlv). Only twelve MSS. of the Vitu Prior are known to have come 
down to modem times ; of the Vita Secunda two only ; of the Tractatus miracu- 
lorum, a single MS. The author of the Golden Legend, who wrote less than thirty 
years after 1266, did not know the Vita Secunda, nor did the author of the Chron. 
xxiv. generalium, writing two generations later. It is difficult to follow Father 
D'Alengon in his contention that the decree had not much to do with these 

3 A similar policy was pursued with regard to the official records of the 
General Chapter ; cf. Statutes of Narbonne (1260 ; diffinitio 1) and Father 
Ehrle's comments thereon [A.L.K.G. vi. pp. 11, 33). D'Alengon points out that 
the Dominican Order pursued a similar policy, though less brutally thorough, 
against unofficial lives of St. Dominic [I.e. p. xliii, n. 4). 

* Cf. in quite a different style, the commonplace book of Fr. Giovamii da 
Camerino, published by Count Monaldo Leopardi in 1833, and MS. Harl. 913, 
apparently compiled by Fr. Michael of Kildare in the early fourteenth century. 


they are often contaminated by other groups, and they have some- 
times survived in a longer and a briefer redaction, of which it is not 
always easy to decide which comes nearer to the original. ^ Of these 
compilations the most important is the Speculum Perfectionis, 
which thus describes itself : " This work was compiled as a biography 
[joer modmn legendae] from certain ancient materials which the 
companions of St. Francis wrote and caused to be written in diverse 
places." ^ Without professing to reproduce the Leo-papers in their 
entirety, this compilation evidently represents the most complete 
surviving collection from those documents. 

Next in importance I should reckon the Legend of the Three Com- 
panions, in spite of the adverse judgments of Fr. van Ortroy and Goetz. 
But, as explained above, there is so little agreement on this point, and 
the evidence which this book supplies, if genuine, is so nearly consonant 
with the rest, that we may leave it aside for the present. 

With the Liher de laudibus we come again to a semi-official The De 
publication. Bonaventura died in 1274, and in 1277 the General i"''*'^'^- 
Chapter of Padua appealed for information supplementary to his 
two Legendae. Bernard of Bessa, who had been his secretary, was 
thus encouraged to write a new biography of St. Francis ; but this 
throws no fresh light on the Saint himself, and its main significance 
from our point of view is that its very inception, in connection with 
the General Chapter decree, testifies to the fact that the Order could 
not for ever content itself with the limitations which Bonaventura 
had tried to impose. 

It is in this light, then, that we must consider the Fioretti, the ThcFioreiti 
last, and in some ways the most remarkable phenomenon in early 
Franciscan literature. It is the least strictly historical, yet by no 
means the least Franciscan, of all these records. We have it only 
in an early Italian version ; its exact Latin original has not been 
found, but a derivative from that original survives in the compilation 
called Actus S. Francisci et sociorum ejus.^ This forms part of a 
much larger and more miscellaneous coUection called Fac secundum 

1 Compare the Speculum Perfectionis, as edited by Sabatier, with the Roman 
MS. published at a very low price at Quaracchi by Fr. Lemmens {Documenta 
antiqica Franciscana, i. and ii.). It is probable that this MS. represents " a 
series of extracts [from the Leo-papers] based on an earlier text than that of 
Sabatier's Spec. Perf." (Little, Ouide, p. 21). "A similar, but smaller, com- 
pilation from the same materials [as the Spec. Perf.] was made or copied by a 
friar at Avignon a few years later " {ibid. p. 19). 

2 Sabatier, Spec. Perf. Introd. p. xlvi. Sabatier, misled by his mistake as 
to the date, removed this note from its proper place, treating it as a matter 
of minor importance. 

' A provisional edition of this book was printed in 1902 by Sabatier, who 
promises soon to give us a critical edition. 

VOL. II 2 G 


exemplar, which again contains the whole or part of six smaller 
collections. This Fac secundum exemplar, which was probably 
compiled between 1322 and 1328, is found in a large number of MSS., 
which difier a good deal from each other ; all its constituent parts 
seem to be based on authentic earlier documents of the kind which 
the Decree of 1266 had attempted to destroy ; one of its sections, 
in fact, consists of eighty-one chapters from the Speculum Perfectionis, 
though not always in identical form. The tendency of the collection 
is definitely Spiritual.^ For part of the Actus, at any rate, we have 
for once an author's name ; a certain Fr. Ugo da Brunforte had 
something to do with it. This was a Spiritual friar, nephew to the 
two brothers Pellegrino and Jacopo da Fallerone who are mentioned 
in the book (chaps. xx-\ai., li,). The whole book records the tradi- 
tions of a particular group, the Spirituals of the Mark of Ancona, 
where large convents were few, and the majority of the brethren 
dwelt by twos and threes in mountain hermitages. These, with 
their similar homes in the Umbrian hills, formed the headquarters 
of the Spirituals in Italy. The Fioretti, therefore, embody a genuine 
and living tradition of the Saint, primarily, in all likelihood, oral, 
but passed down continuously from the lips of those who had known 
him familiarly. Even as a record of historical facts, its reputation 
has rather revived in recent years. ^ If we were to attempt to charac- 
terise it in terms of early Christian documents, it corresponds 
roughly to the Fourth Gospel, and probably Renan was mainly 
thinking of the Fioretti when he wrote : " Nous avons la preuve 
que, sauf les circonstances iniraculeuses, le caractere reel de Franyois 
d'Assise repond exactement au portrait qui est reste de lui. Fran- 
§ois d'Assise a toujours ete une des raisons les plus fortes qui m'ont 
fait croire que Jesus f ut a peu pres tel que les evangelistes synoptiques 
nous le depeignent." ^ 

Franciscan We are now in a position to consider what light is cast by the 

and Chris- Franciscan upon the Christian literary tradition. The significance 

tian literar