The Gospels (3): Language

After determining that the Gospels we have are shaped by an oral culture, another determining issue at hand that determins the shape of our gospels is the language that was used.

There is no consensus on this, but the majority of scholars agree that the language that Jesus spoke during that time was in Aramiac. There is a possibility in Hebrew although this is “less likely” and rarely in “Greek or Latin”(5).

Since the gospels we have were written originally in Greek it must be understood that the translation process also shaped the sayings of Jesus. McKnight explains “as anyone who knows a foreign language will admit, it is rare for one language to be translated into another without alterations and adjustments needed to make the most sense”(6).

The gospels we have now is the product shaped by an oral culture and the language used in that culture (Aramiac) which was ‘frozen’ into ‘written form'(Greek) that became a ‘fixed’ form.(6)

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