|Alan Garrow Didache|
the problem page
The subscriber, 'Evan', began by writing:
“The British scholar Alan Garrow has complied an extremely compelling argument that Q never existed. In seven short videos totalling 52 minutes of viewing time he pretty much proves beyond any doubt that Matthew used both Mark and Luke, and what we imagine as the “Q source” is actually Matthew copying and reorganising Lukan material directly. See these videos here: https://www.alangarrow.com/mch.html. It is virtually impossible to believe in the Q theory once you’ve seen this data. Bart, if you see any holes in his arguments I would be grateful to hear.”
[I should interject at this point that ‘proving that Q never existed’ isn’t, strictly speaking, the precise implication of my thesis – but I understand what Evan means.] Ehrman responded:
“I’m afraid I don’t know [Garrow] or his work. The problem is always that it is very hard for someone without advanced training in a field (whether neuro-science, astronomy, evolutionary biology, philosophy, of biblical studies!) to see the holes in an argument that an expert can see pretty quickly. So we’ll see if he convinces any scholars!”
Undeterred, Evan comes back with a wager:
“You are an expert. I will lay a wager that you cannot find any holes in Garrow’s argument, and that in fact you will be convinced by his resolution to the Synoptic Problem. If you are not convinced, document whatever holes you see on this page. If you are convinced, post a statement that you believe he may have a viable solution to the Problem. Either way, once your assessment is posted, I will donate $1000 to your blog as a thank you for the time you invested to view his presentation and formulate a response.”
Ehrman can’t loose! If he finds holes in the thesis he gets $1000 for the charities he supports. If he doesn’t find holes in the thesis (and is prepared to say so) he still gets $1000 – and a solution to the Synoptic Problem into the bargain! Ehrman responds:
“Ah, that’s tempting. How long are these videos?”
What do you think Ehrman will do? To find out what actually happens visit this string of the Ehrman Blog and scroll to the end of the discussion ...
Another question you might be asking is: who is 'Evan' and why does he care so much about Garrow's thesis? I don't know the answer, but I suspect it must be Evan Powell, author of The Myth of the Lost Gospel in which he makes an excellent case for Matthew's use of Luke. I'm grateful to Evan for his book and for his wager!
To make up your own mind about the videos visit: www.alangarrow.com/mch.html
For further developments in the Challenge see this Blog's archive for Dec 2017, April 2018 and May 2018.
Alan Garrow is Vicar of St Peter's Harrogate and a member of SIIBS at the University of Sheffield.