William Wrede was among the first to recognise the creative contribution of the Gospel writers. His work thus laid the foundation for the work of the Form Critics, Redaction Critics and Literary Critics whose scholarship dominated New Testament studies during the twentieth century. This highly influential work was throughout this period the departure point for all studies in the Gospel of Mark and in the literary methods of the evangelists. It remains highly relevant for its ground-breaking approach to the classically complicated question of whether Jesus saw himself and represented himself as the Messiah.
About the Author
William Wrede (1859-1906) was a Lutheran theologian. He became associate professor at Breslau in 1893, and was a full professor from 1896 until his death. Characterised by his radical methodology, he proposed that New Testament theology ought to be approached according to historical method, and Scripture analysed appropriately. Das Messiasgeheimnis in den Evangelien was his defining work, but was not available in English until this translation was first published in 1971.
Part One: Mark
1. Some Preliminaries on the General Picture of the Messianic History of Jesus
2. The Self-Concealment of the Messiah
3. Concealment Despite Revelation
4. Mark in Retrospect
Part Two: The Later Gospels
5. Matthew and Luke
Part Three: Historical Elucidation
7. The Concealment of the Messiahship up to the Resurrection
8. The Disciples’ Lack of Understanding
9. More on Mark and Luke
10. On the Further History of the Ideas
i. On the Confession of Peter
ii. The Prohibitions of Jesus
iii. The Idea of Education in Mark
iv. On the Prophecies of Suffering and Resurrection
v. On the Text of Mark 10.32
vi. On Mark 10.47
Endorsements and Reviews
Grasping the rich history of New Testament scholarship is crucial for rightly understanding contemporary debates. James Clarke & Co’s Foundations in New Testament Criticism makes available once more a rich corpus of influential books. These are classics in the best sense of the term: works of arresting originality and lasting impact. Whoever takes up these volumes will encounter the rewarding erudition of our predecessors and glean fresh insight by grappling with the shapers of biblical scholarship.
David Lincicum, Associate Professor of Theology, University of Notre Dame