This groundbreaking study poses a solution to what one scholar has called "one of the most difficult research problems in the history of ideas"--the Synoptic problem. The phenomenon and mystery of three similar but different Synoptic Gospels has for centuries challenged some of the best minds of academia and the church.
How can we explain the differences and similarities among Matthew, Mark and Luke? Which Gospel was written first? To what extent did the Evangelists depend on oral tradition, written sources or each other?
John Wenham courageously opposes the reigning two-document theory-that Mark was the first Gospel, with Matthew and Luke independently using Mark and a lost source of sayings of Jesus labeled Q. Through careful argument and analysis, he seeks to defend an alternative theory that satisfactorily accounts for what he argues is some degree of structural dependence but nevertheless a surprising degree of verbal independence among the Synoptics. This brave new revisioning of the writing of the Synoptics redates Matthew, Mark and Luke prior to A.D. 55. Insightful and provocative, Redating Matthew, Mark and Luke offers a fresh look at a hard problem as well as an interesting perspective on the inner workings of the early church. It is a book to be reckoned with--and sure to stir up scholarly controversy.