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the others; or, conversely, if he is supposed to have been used by them, then the question arises as to how it is to be explained that Mark gives so remarkably little of his own, that not only the almost entire substance of his accounts, but very frequently their verbal form is found repeated, sometimes in Matthew, sometimes in Luke, often even in both. Now if it is not to be assumed that Mark used them, then only one of two things remains : either they must both have made use of Mark, or all three must have used the same fundamental record. But none of these assumptions satisfies the cases in which Mark not merely agrees generally with one of the two other synoptics, or exhibits a compound from both, but in which his text at the same time exhibits phenomena which cannot be explained in a writer working independently, but only in one who had older representations before him, and neglected to smooth over in an intelligent manner these roughnesses which so readily result from the appropriation and application of foreign material. When, for example, Mark, ch. i. 2, attributes to Isaiah a passage of the prophet Malachi, applied to John the Baptist, this is most naturally explained by the assumption, that with the passage from Isaiah, which Matthew, and Luke also here quote, he incautiously connected a second passage from a prophet which is quoted by the same writers in a different connection (Matthew xi, 10, Luke vii. 27), likewise, with reference to John, but without the name of the prophet from whom it is taken. In ch. iii. 13, he agrees with Luke (ch. vi. 13,) in representing the election of the twelve Apostles as having been made upon the mountain, immediately before the sermon (omitted by him); and in the list of them passes most irregularly from one construction to another, followed by Luke, and
here quote, he in Isaiah, which Motium ption, that with
at the same time describes the commissioning of the Apostles in words which, in Matt. x. 1, and Luke ix. 1, stand in a different and far more appropriate connection ; the words themselves exhibiting a mixture of the text of both of them. In this case it is difficult to believe that he fell upon this composition of elements entirely independent of the other writers. We find these elements manifestly in them in their original places, and Mark himself, chap. vi. 7, plainly shows to what place they properly belong. In chap. iii. 22, he tells us that when Jesus, after the election of the disciples, was thronged by the people in a house, the Scribes of Jerusalem objected to him that he cast out devils by the chief of them. But this unconnected narrative only becomes intelligible by means of Matthew chap. xii. 22, where that reproach is connected with a casting out of a devil. In chap. xiv. 65, it is said that the servants of the Sanhedrim put a covering over the face of Jesus, struck Him, and cried out to Him, “Prophecy.” It is manifest that we have here abbreviated, until it is unintelligible, what is found in Luke, chap. xxii. 64; Matt. xxvi. 68, “ Prophecy who it is that struck thee.” Matthew and Luke cannot, therefore, have their account from Mark, and as the latter uses in part expressions of Matthew, in part those of Luke, he can only have taken his from them. Mark xv. 37, says that Jesus departed with a loud cry, that the curtain of the temple was rent in twain, that when the centurion on guard saw that he departed with such a cry (according to another reading shorter, but evidently to the same purport, “ that he departed so,") he cried out, This man was truly the Son of God. When Mark says this every reader must indeed ask himself, how any one, and especially a Roman centurion, could have taken an executed malefactor for
the Son of God, for the Jewish Messiah, because before His decease He uttered a loud cry, or how any writer could have attributed such a belief to such a motive.. This strange feature is only intelligible to us when we remember that Matthew does indeed also, chap. xxvii. 50, speak of the loud cry before the decease, and of the rending of the curtain ; but adds, “and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent, and the graves were opened, and many bodies of the saints which slept, arose,” etc.; “Now, when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, and said, “Truly this was the Son of God.'” Here there is a' sufficient motive for the expression of the centurion in the preceding material miracles. Mark, as well as Luke, omits these miracles (probably on account of the resurrection of the dead, which he did not choose should precede that of the “ first-fruits of them that slept "), but he does not wish to dispense with the recognition of Christ by the centurion; and, consequently, as he could not have witnessed the rending of the curtain of the Temple, the only remaining ground for such recognition, the only striking circumstance in the case of the dying person for the centurion to observe, was the loud cry uttered by the former.
A series of further examples, and in particular of those in which the text of Mark can be explained only on the supposition of its being compounded of those of the two other synoptics, is given by Strauss, p. 174, vol. 1. But the explanation that Mark, in all these cases, had before him not the two other Evangelists, but the “fundamental record,” common to him and them—this explanation is indeed opposed by many other considerations, but is also
su her synoptics, Inat Mark, in alts, but the “ fundation is
especially inadmissible in those passages in which heterogeneous features and modes of expression, which are separate in our texts of Matthew and Luke, are combined in Mark. For example, in one of the instances above quoted, Mark introduces in two places what Matthew and Luke mention only in one, and that the only suitable place, with regard to the commission of the Apostles, and in reference to one department of this commission, the expulsion of devils, agrees on one occasion with Luke, ix. 1, in speaking of devils, and on another of “ unclean spirits ;" with Matthew x. 1, there are two suppositions possible, and both equally improbable. The first is, that the “fundamental record” also had these passages in two places, and the second, that it gave in one of them two descriptions of the circumstance of which Matthew borrowed from it one, Luke the other. On the contrary, it is perfectly manifest that Mark made use of the two other synoptics : the account of the commission of the Apostles to heal the sick and to drive out devils, which they place later, he transposes to an earlier place (chap. iii. 14, before the sermon on the Mount), only because he followed Luke (who had a motive for this in the whole scheme of his work,) in assigning this place to the list of the Apostles, but found that account in Matthew, combined with the list of the Apostles; and as, in consequence of this, chap. vi. 7, he was obliged once more to repeat it, he chose for the later passage the expression of Matthew, while in the first he has that of Matthew combined with that of Luke. Mark has a great liking for cases of driving out devils. In consequence of this he describes more miracles of this sort than Matthew, and even more than Luke, but does not give one of his own that is not to be found either in Matthew or in Luke. Thus it cannot be assumed that the latter borrowed their narratives from Mark independent of each other, or from Mark's fundamental record ; for in this case what should have occasioned Matthew only to omit those which Luke adopted, and Luke only those which Matthew adopted ? Quite as little that one of them used, beside Mark, (qy. the fundamental Mark ?) the other as well, and then purposely repeated those cases of driving out devils, which the other did not give; for, if he was concerned about completeness in the case of such miracles, why should he have passed over others which both his predecessors gave, and which were, therefore, better accredited; or, if he was only concerned with supplementing the earlier descriptions, have repeated those which he found already in both ? On the contrary, the fact can only be explained on the supposition that Mark had Matthew and Luke before him, and selected what was agreeable to him. It is the same also in the other cases. In spite of all the ingenuity that has been lately applied to prove the opposite assumption, the dependence of Mark upon Matthew and Luke will still always continue to be the last result of criticism. But as, besides them, Mark undoubtedly made use of other Gospel records also, or at least of one such, and as Luke likewise, as he himself tells us, had before him not merely one predecessor but several, it is still possible that each of them, in individual cases, may have preserved the original tradition in a purer form than the others; but the exact state of the case in this respect, can only be decided by internal evidence, and according to the circumstances of each account as it comes under discussion.