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Two Books Everybody Should Be Talking About (Part One: Goodacre on Thomas & the Synoptics)

December 4, 2012
Goodacre on Thomas 2

My semester is now complete and I have been able to get to some much-needed reading that I began prior to the SBL meeting in Chicago. I have spent the past few weeks reading and digesting two books that I am convinced need to be discussed in much greater detail both in the blogosphere and in the classroom. The first of these is Mark Goodacre’s Thomas and the Gospels: The Case for Thomas’s Familiarity with the Synoptics. Those of us who read Mark’s blog and listen to his podcasts know that he relishes the role of “spoil sport,” especially on issues that are taken for granted within certain segments of academia. Well, he is at his spoil-sport-best in this current book, taking on the canons (accepted in many quarters of North American scholarship) that Thomas is early and independent of the canonical tradition. What makes this book so good is the combination of Mark’s erudition and creativity, along with his knowledge of the Synoptic problem, utility in the Greek synopsis, and skill in evaulating source-critical arguments. While I haven’t read everything that’s ever been written on the Gospel of Thomas, I have recently written a book on Thomas scholarship in which I attempted to explore the range of scholarly opinion within contemporary research. That book required me to read….a lot. Against the backdrop of that (at times, painful) reality, I can tell you that this is one of the most insightful and well-written books on the Gospel of Thomas that I have read. I will soon be posting an interview with Mark as I have with other Thomas scholars and I hope to find the time to do an in-depth review of his book. For now, let me provide my endorsement and strongly suggest that, if you have any interest in the gospel traditions, you get this book.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. arcadium permalink
    December 4, 2012 8:14 pm

    I agree that Mark Goodacre’s book is excellent and I am looking forward to the interview, and to your review!

    Curious about the other book you mentioned :)

  2. the Siliconopolitan permalink
    December 4, 2012 8:53 pm

    I’m just a layman, and I like Goodacre from his Q-work, so I may not be the best judge.

    But I found the book a pleasant and easy read. And as with Q, I fail to understand how the proponents are so (relatively) successful, given how poor their case is.

    What is Goodacre planning to spoil next?

Trackbacks

  1. Interview with Mark Goodacre (Part I) | PEJE IESOUS
  2. Interview with Mark Goodacre (Part I) | Crux Sola

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