THE CLEMENTINE GOSPEL TRADITION
ALL the earliest historians recorded that Matthew wrote prior to Mark.
CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA (150-215) tells as that the tradition of the earliest presbyters (priests) was:
“…the first written of the gospels were those having the genealogies”.
(So: Matthew – Luke – Mark - John)
And “While Peter was publicly preaching …the audience, which was numerous, begged Mark … to write down the things he had said. And he did so, ...”
Also, Mark published two editions. One was prior to Luke. This is why some early writers mention the gospels in a Matthew-Mark-Luke order.
JEROME in his book: ‘Of Illustrious Men ’adopted the order of Matthew-Luke-Mark-John but, for his translations for his Latin Bible, he adopted the: Matthew-Mark-Luke-John sequence. He told the Pope he had not followed the usual sequence.
AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO said Mark developed the ideas of Matthew and Luke.
Many early Eastern Liturgies still use the order recorded by Clement of Alexandra.
When we adopt Clement of Alexandra’s order we can understand why the glaring errors of Mark (1: 2 and 2: 26) were never corrected. Also, why the style of Mark’s last twelve verses, is different to his earlier verses.
The Second Vatican said: The Apostles faithfully: … handed on what they had received from the lips of Christ, from living with Him, and from what he did,…those Apostles …committed the message…to writing. // the Apostles preached …afterwards they themselves and apostolic men, …handed onto us in writing … the fourfold Gospel …// the church firmly holds to the historical character of the Gospels. (Dei Verbum: sections 7, 18 and 19.
When Rome quotes from a Gospel, She always treats the verses as reliable history.
Bernard Orchard OSB, Editor of the 1953 Catholic Commentary on the Scriptures and the RSV-CE 1966 bible, used modern literary analysis to confirm the ancient historians and the early theologians as being correct.
For detailed support and explanation of the above:
See: www.churchinhistory.org (Cream Section 3).