Traditions about Jesus in the early Christian sources (primarily the canonical gospels, but also in Paul’s letters, non-canonical gospels and other texts) can provide valuable information about Jesus; but they can also show us how early Christians used these traditions to inform and address their own situations and contexts. The 28 essays by Christopher Tuckett collected in this volume represent a number of studies, originally published over a period of 30 years, seeking to throw light on the way in which Jesus traditions were developed and used in early Christianity. In the first four essays the author focuses on a number of aspects of the Synoptic Problem, seeking to defend a form of the Two Source Theory.
A substantial part of the book comprises over 10 essays about the Sayings Source “Q”, discussing its existence, its possible pre-history, its language, as well as key features and theological aspects of the material it contains. Three essays discuss Jesus traditions found in Paul’s letters, asking what light they might throw on similar material also contained in the gospel tradition. Two essays focus on the non-canonical Gospel of Thomas , its possible relationship to the canonical gospels and issues about how much light it might shed on the historical Jesus. A number of essays in the final part of the volume discuss different aspects of the individual synoptic gospels. A feature of many of the essays in the collection here is to focus on the question of Christology in general, and the use of the term “Son of Man” in particular.