This site podcasts the chapel presentations, sermons and seminars from the Bear Valley Bible Institute of Denver.
Mark - The Synoptic Problem: The Priority of Mark (Mark Hanstein)
2011 Bear Valley Lectures - Who Is This Jesus? A Detailed Study of the Gospel of Mark
I've been struggling with the problem of source criticism of the New Testament for some years now and was very excited to hear about this message. It was the first one I listened to. But I’m sorry to say I’m disappointed. Mark Hanstein did little to staunch the flow of evidence for the Markan priority, perhaps appealing more to an audience who “needs no explanation” than to people who are truly challenged by the details. Matthew breaks the Chiastic structure of Mark’s gospel to borrow from the fig tree story, yet differs significantly from Luke in the birth narrative, right where Mark himself is silent. And the beatitudes of Matthew are very different from those of Luke as well. Yet in certain places the two Gospels are in near word for word agreement with Mark. I find that the appeals to the Holy Spirit and to good memory for this agreement just don’t cut it. If the Holy Spirit was able to preserve one story right down to the “mood, tense and precise wording”, why would He not also do the same with the birth story and the beatitudes, but rather allow versions that are so different and difficult that even the most conservative scholar has to admit they are very hard to harmonize and aren’t accounted for simply by differences in the writer’s objective? I also don’t buy the idea that the differences between Mark and Matthew/Luke are good evidence against Markan Priority, or at least of common source. Yes, there are holes in the materialist explanation, but this presentation wasn’t able to demonstrate that an inerrancy perspective is better than a materialist one.
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