Richardson, Peter & Gooch, Peter. "Chapter Two: Logia of Jesus in 1 Corinthians." in Wenham, David (editor), The Jesus Tradition Outside the Gospels. Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1984, 39-62.
Richardson and Gooch freely acknowledge that Paul cites the words and actions of Jesus relatively seldom. However, scholarly opinion generally suggests that he was aware of much that he never stated, due to the actual purposes of his writing (Wenham [editor] 1984, 39). On the other side of the coin, there are arguments that Paul did not know much of the words and actions of Jesus, thus said little. Both sides in the discussion depend on arguments from silence. To make progress in this discussion, Richardson and Gooch suggest not only reviewing Paul's use of material about Jesus, but also evaluating his use of Jesus' words as a ground for his argument, and considering whether he considers it important to use his writings to pass the tradition on to future generations (Wenham [editor] 1984, 40).
This chapter analyzes Paul's use of Jesus' teaching in 1 Corinthians. Paul is clearly considering Jesus' passion as fundamental to his teaching. In 1 Corinthians he never mentions "Jesus' healing, exorcising, preaching, or miracles" (Wenham [editor] 1984, 41). However, he does make specific reference to Jesus' teaching which is reflected in the Synoptic Gospels. This sets 1 Corinthians apart from Paul's other letters (Wenham [editor] 1984, 42).
Paul's specific references to traditions about Jesus are found in 1 Corinthians 15:3-8, 11:23-26, 7:10, and 9:14 (Wenham [editor] 1984, 42). In chapter seven, Richardson and Gooch observe Paul's teaching on marriage and divorce is consistent with the general view expressed in the Synoptic Gospels. He makes a clear distinction between what he understands as the Lord's commands and his own conclusions (Wenham [editor] 1984, 43).
The argument in chapter nine is about God's servants making their living the Gospel. As with chapter seven, Paul couches the Lord's command among his own statements. He does distinguish between his words and Jesus' words, but he uses Jesus to support his argument (Wenham [editor] 1984, 44).
The statement from 1 Corinthians 14:37, that Jesus taught that women should be silent in Church, is difficult. It doesn't line up with any Synoptic tradition. Richardson and Gooch suggest it could be a recollection of a post-resurrection saying (Wenham [editor] 1984, 45).
Richardson and Gooch consider the issue of allusions. One of the primary challenges we face in dealing with allusions is that of defining the criteria by which a statement can be recognized as an allusion (Wenham [editor] 1984, 45). They choose to pursue as allusions those passages in which Paul uses an image for the same purpose that it is used in the Synoptic gospels, then places where Paul uses ideas which agree with those in the Synoptics (Wenham [editor] 1984, 46). Richardson and Gooch pursue these in turn. While we find relatively few passages which make clear quotations, the allusive ideas are fairly frequent.
Richardson and Gooch concllude that Paul seems familiar with and consciously informed by the traditions about Jesus. However, many of the ideas remain below the surface, so we would have no idea of their source if we didn't have the Synoptic Gospels (Wenham [editor] 1984, 50). The references generally seem related to material used by Mark, though Richardson and Gooch consider some of the ideas to be Q materials (Wenham [editor] 1984, 51).
Paul does not seem to use specific claims of Jesus as a foundation for his teaching. While he does use them, it seems more focused on the imagery and to function as a supporting idea to document what Paul intends to teach (Wenham [editor] 1984, 52). While it is clear that in some instances Paul particularly means to pass on information about the Jesus traditions, in general he does not seem to intend a wholesale passing on of the accounts of Jesus 'life and teaching (Wenham [editor] 1984, 54). He is, rather, focused on the facts of the death and resurrection of Christ.