Why was the New Testament not written right after Jesus time?
by Matt Slick
Why did the writers of the New Testament wait so long before writing about the events of Jesus? Why didn’t they write the events down as they were happening? Even if the Gospels, for example, were written before 50 A.D., doesn’t that mean it was 20 years between the actual events and the recording? Doesn’t that mean that the accuracy can’t be trusted because they were recorded so long after the actual events?
We are not able to enter into the minds of the New Testament writers and tell you why they waited for years before writing things down. However, we can offer some possible explanations.
First of all, it is an assumption to say they didn’t write things down until many years afterwards. It’s certainly possible that things were recorded, used in writing the basis of the Gospels, and then the finished product was disseminated throughout the Christian church.
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This is not a very strong argument. It is merely offered as a possibility since there seems to be evidence of a common document that existed before Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, and one or more of them draw from it when writing the Gospels. The document called “Q” is proposed for this. Q stands for quelle, or ‘source.’
Second, people don’t normally write things down as they happen. We experience something and then later realize it was significant. Then collaboration is often used with other witnesses when recounting what happened so that an accurate report can be recorded…
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