>> I think there is reason to believe that early Christians made use of a variety
>> of aids and devices for both preserving and disseminating their traditions.
>> Why should one presuppose rigidity of form when everything we are learning
>> about the hellenistic world, including hellenistic Judaism, implies a wide
>> scope of literary forms?
> And this is the difficulty I have. As I see it out of one side of the
> mouth we say that there must have been a multiplicity of documents in
> diverse forms disseminated in sundry ways. Out of the other side of the
> mouth we reduce that world to 2 sources-Q and Mark.
And so you solve this difficulty be eliminating one of the sources, so
the we say there must have been a multiplicity of documents, but we
have no examples at all that we can point to? :-) For me it is not so
much that there are only two sources, but that Q is the very rare,
perhaps unique, occasion where the source has a possibility of being
reconstructed with enough detail to get a feel for what the document
might have looked like.
Furthermore, Q is not the only source that is discussed. There is the
semeia source in John. But in that case little can be done beyond
arguing for its existence. On the other hand, Helmut Koester has no
trouble being limited to only Mark and Q as sources. He has proposed
quite a few other ones as well.
The Claremont Graduate School
Institute for Antiquity and Christianity
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