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Does the New Testament Imitate Homer?Four Cases from the Acts of the Apostles$
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Dennis R. MacDonald

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780300097702

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300097702.001.0001

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Jerusalem Legend or Homeric Imitation?

Jerusalem Legend or Homeric Imitation?

(p.113) 11 Jerusalem Legend or Homeric Imitation?
Does the New Testament Imitate Homer?

Dennis R. MacDonald

Yale University Press

This chapter shows that Luke surely knew a tradition about the death of Judas insofar as he shares intriguing details with Matthew's version; some of Papias's account likewise may be independent of Acts. For the casting of lots to replace Judas, however, no independent evidence exists. Furthermore, “The structure, vocabulary, style, motifs, and line of thought in verses 21ff point to Lucan formation so strongly that any underlying tradition in these verses is unrecognizable.” Typically Lucan traits have not deterred from critics from positing a tradition behind this material as well. The proposals run the gamut from oral tradition to a written source and from an Aramaic environment to a Greek.

Keywords:   death of Judas, Matthew's version, Papias, Lucan formation, form critics

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