As I began reading the book I understood Bob's high regard for Black's work. Black's theory of the reliability of the Gospels depends entirely on the explanation of the early Church Fathers, such as: Papias of Hierapolis (60-130), Justin (100-165), Irenaeus (130-200), Clement of Alexandria (150-215), Tertullian (160-225), Origen (185-254), Eusebius (260-340), and others. Black lists all the fathers and their statements about the gospels in order to display the weight of Patristic evidence. These Fathers and others of the Ancient Church not only attest to the authority and reliability of the Four Gospels, but provide the historical process of their transmission.
Dr. Black’s thesis is well founded, and most likely comes closer to the reality of the origins of the gospels than the Markan priority theory.
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