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Introduction: History and Text of the Didache

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Chapter Summary

In this introductory chapter, the book The Didache is treated as an unity although it is a composite document, containing elements from different backgrounds and stages of development. The book's views on topics like the Didache's reputation, its textual witnesses, division, goal, use of Scriptural materials, time, and place are briefly introduced as these judgments are often assumed and discussed. It draws attention to the wide popularity of the Didache in the early church, examines the Codex H which contains the only known complete form of the manual, and gives a translation of this manuscript. The book considers the manual's sources and the intention behind the arrangement of these pre-didachic materials, studies the sayings and traditions in the Didache which are closely related to the New Testament, and makes a reasonable guess at the date and provenance of the compilation as a whole.

Keywords: Codex H; Didache; early church; scriptural materials



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