Hagner, Donald A. "Chapter Nine: The Sayings of Jesus in the Apostolic Fathers and Justin Martyr." in Wenham, David (editor), The Jesus Tradition Outside the Gospels. Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1984, 233-268.
Hagner, recognizing the space between the events of the Gospels and the written Gospels themselves, observes we would expect there to exist authoritative accounts of Jesus' actions and teachings. One would therefore expect to find some mentioned in early Christian writings even if they were not included in the canonical Gospel accounts (Wenham [editor] 1984, 233). Hagner notes that there are relatively few passages in the 1st and 2nd century FAthers which are clearly intended to be understood as quotes from or allusions to words of Jesus. He catalogs a number for us (Wenham [editor] 1984, 234ff). Of special interest is an oral marker in 1 Clement 13, where we are told to "remember." This suggests that Clement may know the sayings from an oral tradition rather than a written one, which could be consulted rather than being remembered (Wenham [editor] 1984, 235). Polycarp uses some of the same material in a different order, and with a slightly different wording. Though Hagner thinks Polycarp was familiar with 1 Clement, he doesn't seem to depend on it here (Wenham [editor] 1984, 236).
1 Clement 46:8 makes a reference to two sayings of Jesus which are not in proximity to each other in the Gospels. The ideas, though not all the wording, are used by some other Church Fathers, but without the focused structure and vocablyar which would point to a literal dependence (Wenham [editor] 1984, 231).
The seven letters of Ignatius have a few possible allusions to the Gospels, with one presented as a direct quote of Jesus (Smyrn. 3.2). The sayings are not identical in wording to anything in the Scriptures. Jerome and Origen attribute the statements to non-canonical sources (Wenham [editor] 1984, 239).
Polycarp makes a few statements which are at least allusive to Synoptic material. However, Hagner notes they are in relatively strongly liturgical statements which are brief and epigrammatic so the relationship is difficult to identify (Wenham [editor] 1984, 240).
Considering the Didache, Hagner finds a large amount of material which appears closely related to Synoptic material, but which is difficult to consider. 9:5 uses an introductory formula, then quotes Matthew 7:6 (Wenham [editor] 1984, 240). 8:1 makes associations between hypocrisy and fasting, similar to Matthew 6:16 (Wenham [editor] 1984, 241). The Lord's Prayer is then given in a form almost identical to that in Matthew 6:9ff. Here, it is "as the Lord commanded in his gospel," a clause Hagner takes to refer to a tradition other than Matthew's written work. The same idea occurs with the trinitarian formula in 7:1, compared with Matthew 28:19 (Wenham [editor] 1984, 241).
Didache 1:2 juxtaposes Deuteronomy 6:5 and Levitics 19:18b, very much like Matthew 22:37-39 and Mark 12:29-31 (Wenham [editor] 1984, 241). However, Hagner thinks this may be a reference to a common Jewish pattern, as is the similarity of the negative statement of the Golden Rule in 1:2.
I quote the following as it identifies passages which my research should evaluate specifically. "Other passages that deserve mention are 11.7 (Matt 12:31; cf Mark 3:28); 13.1-2 (Matt 10:10; cf Luke 10:7; 1 Tim 5:18); 16.1 (Matt 24:42, 44) and 16.3-5 (Matt 24:10-13). There is no convincing allusion to Ats (cf. 4.8 with Acts 4:32), and in only one instance does an OT allusion (Ps 37:11) occur also in one of the Gospels (Matt 5:5) and the Didache (3.7)." (Wenham [editor] 1984, 241). The case for dependence on the written Gospels is weak, while that for dependence on oral tradition is strong.
Hagner considers the Epistle of Barnabas to make little reference to the Ne wTestament, though there are a few possible connections when Old Testament ideas are used by Barnabas and by the Synoptic authors (Wenham [editor] 1984, 242).
The Shepherd of Hermas makes numerous allusions to the Synoptics, but they are never introduced as quotations. It is not clear to Hagner in any instances whether the material is drawn from the New Testament or from other materials (Wenham [editor] 1984, 243).
2 Clement probably moves us into the second half of the second century. It contains many clear allusions to the Gospels and introduces them clearly (Wenham [editor] 1984, 244). Hagner reviews those which contain introductory formulas. Some of the statements appear to be direct quotations and some gradually diverge in their wording. Hagner acknowledges that this could be due to citation from memory or citation of a different source tradition (Wenham [editor] 1984, 245).
Justin Martyr provides more material for consideration than Hagner considers practicable. However, he does review some representative samples (Wenham [editor] 1984, 247ff). Justin is clearly using written sources, which he refers to as written works which are read in gatherings on Sundays (Wenham [editor] 1984, 248).
Hagner concludes that all these early Fathers were probably writing after the Synoptic Gospels had been written (Wenham [editor] 1984, 249). The lack of specific citation or quotation of these works on the same level as quotation of the Old Testament is not surprising, especially in the earlier period. The differences in wroding may easily be attributed to making reference to the material from memory (Wenham [editor] 1984, 250). However, Hagner considers it significant to consider that non-canonical sources could also be used for quotation or paraphrase. This could explain the very careful use of parallelism and euphony found in some of the syaings of Jesus. Oral tradition and catechesis regularly uses statements presented in a highly memorable manner. Hagner observes that this would sill be the case at the time of Justin, when the canonical sources were being recognized as prominent (Wenham [editor] 1984, 251).
Hagner cites the improtance f orality as evidenced by Eusemius' comments on both. Papias and Irenaeus, who considered the words of a witness or a tradent as bearing special authority (Wenham [editor] 1984, 251). The seat of authority only gradually moved from oral transmission to written transmission of truth (Wenham [editor] 1984, 252). This gradual move complicates the work of identification of the source of written statements. The authority was seen to rest in Jesus, not in the report of his words. The means of the report may not have been considered vey important (Wenham [editor] 1984, 253). The work of the Apostles was considered important primarily because they were transmitting the words of Jesus to the next generation (Wenham [editor] 1984, 255).
Hagner notes that transmission of authoritative truth was understood at the time of the New Testament to take place both throguh oral and written means (Wenham [editor] 1984, 255). The oral tradition could frequently be considered superior in terms of its authenticity and authority. The slight verbal adaptations of Jesus' teachings are very slight, though the narratives which introduce them show more variety (Wenham [editor] 1984, 256). The tradition was well guarded, particularly while the eyewitnesses still lived. It was after that period that the written texts were necessary to guard accuracy.