Harry Anderson, “Prince of Peace”
In the 1980s-1990s, Dominic Crossan, Helmut Koester, and Arthur Dewey argued that a version of the Gospel of Peter predates Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John. They also argued that this version of the Gospel of Peter was a source for the four canonical gospels. Some earlier scholars had already suggested a direction of dependence from the Gospel of Peter to the canonical gospels (e.g. Adolf von Harnack, Percival Gardner-Smith, Benjamin Arlen Johnson, and Jürgen Denker). Yet the opinion had always been in the minority (and still is).
Rather than assess the proposal in full here, I want to mention a couple of the reasons they offered, both of which relied on form-critical arguments. The first, following the earlier contention of Martin Dibelius (in “Die alttestamentlichen Motive in der Leidensgeschichte des Petrus- und des Johannes-Evangeliums”), was that the Gospel of Peter must be older because it much more directly incorporated…
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