Thursday, February 16, 2017

"as the angels were gone away from them" - Gospels as Court Evidence for Paul


Gospels as Court Evidence for Paul

Another theory on the Gospels is that some of them were written for preparation for the coming trial of Paul in Rome.

Paul was faced with a trial.  It was the biggest concern for Paul and Luke.  He had to prove that he had been doing just a right thing: preaching the Gospel without an intention to hurt anybody.  So, he had to explain who Christ Jesus was to the Roman authority.  He needed court evidence.  For this purpose, Paul must have asked Luke to write a report about Christ Jesus and their journey to Rome.

The former eventually became the Gospel according to Luke, and the latter eventually became the Acts.

And, as Peter also came to Rome, Peter saw Luke writing these documents.  Then he also asked Mark to write his version of the Gospel based on Peter's witness and the source document Luke used that must have been originally possessed by Paul since he had returned from Qumran.  It is because Peter probably tried to save Paul in the coming trial.  So, he also prepared a report to be submitted to the Roman authority.  And, later this report written by Mark became the Gospel according to Mark.

The most important and imminent matter for Paul and Peter was the trail of Paul by the Roman authority.  Therefore they made the best effort to prepare for it, which was creation of reports on Christ Jesus as evidence of Paul's religious activities.

So, these Gospels were written with expectation to be read by Roman officials.

Probably the Roman officials who read these reports or Gospels did not punish Paul.  But Emperor Nero executed Paul as well as Peter after a big fire in Rome.

But as these reports or Gospels were in the hand of the Roman authority, they were preserved despite the big fire and the turmoil of the execution of Paul and Peter.  So, some of the very early Roman Christians must have been those Roman officials who read the Gospel according to Luke and probably that according to Mark in the process of the trial of Paul.

The truth must be simple but mysterious in a sense.

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Luk 2:15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
Luk 2:16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.