In fact, other than the title "the Gospel according to Luke"—which is admitted by all authorities to be an addition and not original to the text—Luke's name does not show up in any gospel. Luke's Use of Josephus? Krishna, Buddha and Christ Unveiled. According to Eusebius—in disagreement with Irenaeus, who suggested Papias had known the apostle John—Papias had no direct acquaintance with any of the apostles: The substantiation for this early, first-century range of dates, both conservative and liberal, is internal only, as there is no external evidence, whether historical or archaeological, for the existence of any gospels at that time. The following may summarize the order of the gospels as they appear in the historical and literary record, beginning in the middle of the second century: These arguments are lengthy but include Luke's inclusion of the following episodes found in Josephus: The same may be said of the other early papyri fragments, P90 Jn In actuality, there were gospels composed in the name of every apostle, including Thomas, Bartholomew and Phillip, but these texts are considered "spurious" and unauthorized. If these apostles themselves had gospels forged in their names, how can we be certain that Matthew, Mark, Luke and John did not likewise have gospels falsified in their names? Moreover, Papias only speaks about a narrative by Mark, which by no means conclusively refers to the canonical Mark as we have it. Nevertheless, fundamentalist Christian apologists such as Norman Geisler make misleading assertions such as that "many of the original manuscripts date from within twenty to thirty years of the events in Jesus' life, that is, from contemporaries and eyewitnesses. Anonymous and Pseudonymous Authors Based on the dating difficulties and other problems, many scholars and researchers over the centuries have become convinced that the gospels were not written by the people to whom they are ascribed. Also, Luke's gospel discusses an apparent myriad of preceding gospels written "by those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses…" The phrase "from the beginning" likewise implies a passage of time, as does the fact that there were "many" who preceded Luke in writing gospels. According to this scholarship, the gospels must have been written after the devastation because they refer to it.
The presumed dating of P52 to the first half of the second century has been called "sensational" and seems untenable. John's Gospel The first notice of John's gospel emerges around the time of Bishop Theophilus, who, while he does name a "John" as the author of verses seemingly from the first chapter of the gospel of John, does not identify the author as a direct apostle or disciple of Christ. Late Dating of the Gospels? Thus, the identity of Luke's Theophilus has never been explained adequately in terms of the purported era of Christ's advent. Although it would be logical for all those directly involved with Jesus to have recorded their own memoirs, is it not odd that there are so many bogus manuscripts? Blomberg, The Case for Christ 26 Because of the lack of original texts, it has been very difficult to date the canonical gospels as to when they were written or even when they first emerge in the historical record, as these two dates may differ. With this evident validation, Jerome dropped a bombshell which might have shaken the foundations of the Church but which has apparently been ignored, with translations omitting this part of the saint's Preface, and the original Latin of which possibly difficult to track down outside of a major university. Since the Pharisees were technically not "priests" per se but pious, unlearned laymen, it would be unusual for them to have "disciples" in the clerical sense. In reality, it seems the author of Luke may have based his gospel on Marcion's "Gospel of the Lord," rather than vice versa. Indeed, the term "according to" in the original Greek—kata—could be interpreted to suggest that the texts were understood to be relating a tradition of these individuals, rather than having been written by them. In any event, with the reference in his apology and a purported text of commentaries on the gospels, Bishop Theophilus becomes the first Church father clearly to discuss the canonical gospels! Indeed, renowned biblical scholar Tischendorf only managed to find two pertinent quotations in Justin Martyr's works that could possibly come from the gospel of Matthew, for example. It is not within the scope of this present work to examine thoroughly the alternative argument for a late dating of the gospels. Especially since it was asserted by ancient authorities that Luke himself was from Antioch? The following may summarize the order of the gospels as they appear in the historical and literary record, beginning in the middle of the second century: Church Father and Bishop Papias Christian apologetics for the early gospel dates rely on the slimmest of evidence, including a very late third-hand testimony of a late second-hand testimony that "Mark" had written a narrative, supposedly based on the experiences of Peter as related by the apostle himself. Anonymous and Pseudonymous Authors Based on the dating difficulties and other problems, many scholars and researchers over the centuries have become convinced that the gospels were not written by the people to whom they are ascribed. In reality, none of the evangelists identifies himself as a character in the gospel story. In fact, we do not have any mention in the historical record of the story of Christ's body being stolen having been spread among the Jews until the second century. In the original Greek, Luke calls Theophilus "kratistos," a term used biblically with the following meaning, per Strong's Biblical Concordance G Krishna, Buddha and Christ Unveiled. However, conservative believers maintain the early dates and assert that the destruction of the temple and Judea mentioned in the gospels constitutes "prophecy," demonstrating Jesus's divine powers. Other mentions of John's gospel occur around the same time by Clement Alexandrinus d. What does it all mean? What we do know for a fact—admitted even by the Catholic Encyclopedia—is that the titles attached to the gospels, "The Gospel According to Matthew," etc. Next, upon close inspection, the material from Justin Martyr—such as the "Memoirs of the Apostles"—does not correspond well enough to that found in the canonical gospels and is likely from another common source text or texts.
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