Tübingen critics


Tübingen critics
A group of scholars round F. C. Baur [[➝ Baur, Ferdinand Christian]] (1792–1860) at Tübingen University who took a radical view of the NT: only Rom., 1 and 2 Cor., and Gal. were accepted as authentically Pauline, and these epistles revealed a deep opposition between Jewish and gentile [[➝ Gentiles]] Christianity. At a later date the historically unreliable Acts represented a Gentile attempt to present a harmonious picture of the early Church, and the gospel of John was the crown of a theological development rather than an account of the Jesus of history. Baur's view that much of the NT was to be dated in the 2nd cent. depended on the so-called epistles of Ignatius being even later, but the painstaking work of J. B. Lightfoot [[➝ Lightfoot, Joseph Barber]] of Cambridge demonstrated that the seven epistles attributed to Ignatius (107 CE) were authentic. This partly undermined the Tübingen thesis. There was the further weakness that Baur assumed that Matthew was the first gospel to be written and that Mark's theological motifs argue a later date—a view generally now discarded. Nevertheless, it would be widely agreed today that the harmonious picture of the Acts distorts the facts. Conflicts were passionate and intense, as between Paul and the Jerusalem leaders. In the end, Pauline principles prevailed and we only have the victor's side of the struggle.

Dictionary of the Bible.

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