In 1885 the Baptist Quarterly Review reviewed three editions of the newly released Didache, one by Canon Spence (London: James Nisbit & Co., 1885), one by Roswell Hitchcock and Rancis Brown (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1885), and one by Philip Schaff (New York: Funk and Wagnalls, 1885) (Lincoln 1885, 375). Lincoln considers Spence’s edition, which describes the different offices of the church in detail and which ascribes authorship to Symeon of Jerusalem, immediately after James, to be superior to Hitchcock’s work. However, he considers Schaff’s edition the best, as it includes the comparable documents in Greek and English, as well as having numerous illustrations. The text is 33 chapters in length (Lincoln 1885, 376).
The Didache, though probably not as important a discovery as Codex Sinaiticus or Hippolytus’ On All the Heresies, had attracted more attention than either of those recent discoveries (Lincoln 1885, 376). Dating and authorship of the document were the two areas of greatest controversy. Lincoln summarizes the different stances taken by scholars on both date and author, thus compiling a substantial list (Lincoln 1885, 376).
Lincoln considers the Didache to have little value and to only speak to one doctrine, that of the second coming of Christ (Lincoln 1885, 377). He is disappointed that the Two Ways is merely ethical teaching which, in his opinion, Plato or Seneca would have known, and that the teaching about baptism and the eucharist focus on practice rather than doctrine. He finds only ritual and no “spiritual truths” (Lincoln 1885, 377). He views it as useless in giving genuine spiritual teaching. Lincoln is further disappointed, as a Baptist, because the Didache could be used to endorse a paedo-baptist point of view, which he considers inadequate. However, Lincoln suggest this was Hitchcock’s interpretation, but that the Didache itself teaches adult baptism and a symbolic and non-sacramental view of communion (Lincoln 1885, 378).