New Testament Studies


The Two-Source Theory at an Impasse1

Prof M.-E. Boismard O.P.a1

a1 Jerusalem, Israel

Twenty years ago we could assume that the Two-Source theory, as the decisive solution to the synoptic problem, had won the day. An unassailable dogma in Germany, on the front lines in Louvain, well positioned in England and the United States, it had little to fear from the last spasms of its opponents, and could view them as the final stand of the rearguard. But times have changed. Aged Griesbach turns in his grave, refusing to stay defeated. After two centuries he has returned to the field in the persons of Dom Butler of England and, especially, of W. R. Farmer of the United States, who has succeeded in mustering a force of young and dynamic researchers. Even in Germany the enemy has gained a foothold. Already in 1971 A. Fuchs saw that a large number of the Matthew/Luke agreements against Mark could not be explained in terms of the Two-Source theory. More recently, H. H. Stoldt has affirmed his preference for the Griesbach theory.


1 We are grateful to Lorraine Caza, Robert Beck and Francis Martin for the English translation of this article.