[from BARNABAS AND THE DIDACHE by Robert A. Kraft]
[English original, published by Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1965]

Updated Electronic Edition by Robert A. Kraft [updated 28jl1995; 31mr2003]
[Copyright Robert Kraft, Philadelphia, 1995ff]

Appeared originally as volume 3 of the series entitled
edited by Robert M. Grant

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[updated 7/28/95]

§7. Various Forms of the Didache Tradition

In addition to the witnesses to the separate Two Ways tradition (§2:5) the following manuscripts and documents contain or are closely related to the form of the Didache with which we are directly concerned.

(1) H (Codex Hierosolymitanus) is the Bryennios manuscript described in §3:1, which contains the only known form of the full Didache in Greek. Its text of the Didache was first published by Bryennios in 1883, and facsimiles appeared in 1887, edited by J. R. Harris.

(2) POxy is the Greek Oxyrhynchus Papyrus 1782, dating from the late fourth century, which consists of two fragments of a codex, and preserves Didache 1.3b-4a and 2.7b--3.2a in a slightly variant form (with some significant expansion) from H.

(3) Cop is a fragment of a Coptic version (or possibly of an extract from such a version) from the fifth century and contains Didache 10.3b-12.1b[2a], including the prayer for the oil in 10.8 (= ApCo).\1/

\1/See Clayton N. Jefford and S.J. Patterson, "A note on Did. 12.2a (Coptic)," Second Century 7 (1989/90) 65-75 [discusses the fragment and its ending].


(4) Georg is a complete Georgian version preserved in a nineteenth-century manuscript at Constantinople (the translation itself may be as early as the fifth century). It lacks any equivalent to Didache 1.5-6 (cf. ApCo) and 13.5-7. Although the complete Georg text has never been published, some variant readings were made available in 1932 (Zeitschrift fu%r die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft 31, [[58]] 111ff.). The title of the Didache in this manuscript includes the words "written in the year 90 or 100 after the Lord

(5) ApCo is the Greek Apostolic Contitutions 7.1- 32 which seems to derive from fourth-century Egypt and builds on an adapted form of the whole Didache. It is difficult to determine the precise relationship between H and the Didache tradition known to ApCo. It seems probable that ApCo or its immediate predecessors have reworked and streamlined the Didache, as well as adding numerous comments
(especialiy scriptural quotations/allusions) to the basic Didache tradition. For example, the liturgical portions of the Didache appear in ApCo in a form which presents fewer problems to the fourth-century user: nothing is said of the alternative modes of baptism (Did. 7); the prayers of Didache 9-10 are reworked to fit a sacramental eucharist with the more usual order of bread-cup, and the frequent repetition of "yours is the glory forever"
is drastically curtailed. Similarly, the archaic rules governing prophets and apostles in Didache 11-13 and 15 are removed, while "priests" and "presbyters" are introduced into these contexts. The apocalyptic material of chapter 16 is also streamlined -- thus ApCo lacks the Barnabas parallel to Didache 16.2, as well as details about the "anti-Christ" figure in 16.4b and the conflagration of 16.5a. Numerous vague references to what is "said" (Did. 14.3a; 16.7) or to "the commandment" (1.5b; 13.5, 7) or to the words of "the Lord" and "the gospel" (11.3; 14.3; 15.4) are lacking in ApCo, along with such an explicit and identifiable reference as 9.5b. Only in Didache 11.2 does ApCo retain the term "didache" (teaching) itself. Finally, most allusions to "gnosis" and perfection/blamelessness (1.4; 1.5b; 6.2; 9.3; 11.2) have been removed along with the parenthetic address "my child" (3.1-6; 4.1). Some of these features may derive from the form of the Didache used by ApCo, but it would be risky to conjecture which. For the rest, it is clear that ApCo knows a form of the Didache quite close to H -- it includes at least the first part of the "interpolation" [[59]] in Didache 1.3bff. (but ApCo lacks 1.5b-2.1; cf. Georg), and follows the general order of H's text (the most notable exception is 3.1-4, where the material of 3.3 follows 3.4). ApCo agrees with Cop in including the prayer for the oil in 10.8, and has a few agreements with POx against H. Thus, for all its problems, ApCo also has some demonstrable value in discussions of the textual history of the Didache.

(6) Eth indicates the Ethiopic version of the "Ecclesiastical Canons of the Apostles" (see §2:5:2), one of the
many church manuals derived, in one way or another, from the Apostolic Tradition of Hippolytus which became so popular in the East. Known from late manuscripts (fifteenth to eighteenth centuries), the Ethiopic Apostolic Tradition contains an interpolated section (it is absent from the exactly parallel contexts in the Sahidic and Arabic versions) as follows: Ethiopic 52 (= Arabic 51, Sahidic 63b) deals with false bishops, which leads to a discussion of false and true prophets. At this point the Ethiopic alone introduces a section (1) admonishing the reader to avoid idolatry, corpses, blood, things strangled, broken bones (in food?); (2) then Didache 11.3-13.7 (except for 11.6 and 13.2) on false and true prophets; (3) then Didache 8.1-2a on "the hypocrites"; (4) then on sabbath conduct of presbyters and lesser church officials, the congregation at large, and reception of visitors. Thereafter the text resumes its agreement with Sahidic and Arabic concerning gifts and false prophets, and promises to speak next of how bishops are to be ordained.

§8. The Didache as a Community Tradition

1. Kinds of Redactional Evidence. Because the impersonal, composite character of the Didache is even more obvious than that of Barnabas (at least Barnabas provides some personal glimpses of the author-editor, §4:3-4), the task of distinguishing between the various traditional materials now incorporated into the Didache is sometimes slightly less difficult. Three kinds of evidence are especialy helpful: (1) [[60]] actual writings which obviously are closely related to the Didache but which show a slightly different stage in the development of the tradition (e.g., §2:5) -- thus problems of text as well as of redactional levels may be involved here; (2)
internal evidence from the present form(s) of the Didache itself that a certain amount of adaptation to changing circumstances already has occurred; and (3) more subtle matters of style and content which suggest the existence of older, smaller units of tradition behind the preserved form(s) of the Didache.\2/

\2/For a summary of J.-P. Audet's approach to these problems, see Robert M. Grant, The Apostolic Fathers: An Introduction (New York, 1964), 73-74.


2. Development as Attested by the Various Forms of the Didache. Not only is it true that the Didache and its materials are preserved and reworked into larger collections by the church manual tradition in which it stands (see §2:5:2, §7:5-6) , but it sometimes happens that our extant witnesses to this kind of use and reuse of traditional materials provide a firsthand view of how the tradition evolved. We have already mentioned certain features of the Two Ways section in the Didache which seem to have developed independently from the form knowm to Barnabas (§2:4). For the most part, we have no real way of telling which of the modifications have emerged only in the
final stage of the editing of the Didache (or of Barnabas, for that matter), which had already taken place in the tradition before it came to the final author-editor, and which are subsequent glosses. But occasionally a passage can throw some clear light on the process. Didache 1.3b-2.1 is a case in point. For all practical purposes, this "interpolation" is lacking in Dctr, Barnabas, and CO (also Syntagma-Fides and Shenuti?). The more or less "non-Synoptic" portion (1.5-6) is lacking in Georg and is greatly abridged in ApCo. POx contained at least the "Synoptic" materials (1.3b-4a), and even knows a significantly longer form of 1.4a! It is most probable, then, that this interpolation into the Two Ways material is the responsibility of one of [[61]] the most recent if not the final redactional level before the H-Georg-POx-ApCo form of the Didache appeared. A similar piece of evidence is the "Prayer for the Ointment" in some witnesses (Cop, ApCo) to Didache 10.8. If this prayer was not already known to the H-Georg form of the Didache (which does not include it), it represents one of the very next redactional stages in the continuing evolution of the Didache.

3. Major Internal Evidence of Development. Certain other of the more recent stages of development in the Didache are indicated by such concessions and/or adaptations as the following:

6.2 -- the ideal is the "perfect" person who can "bear the entire yoke of the Lord," but this ideal has been adapted to a more realistic position: "do the best you can."

6.3 reads similarly -- the ideal is to keep the food laws. But in the light of changing conditions and attitudes, at least
"avoid food consecrated in pagan temples"!

7.2-3 shows a concession caused by external circumstances. The ideal, and thus probably the earliest form of this baptismal instruction called for immersion (?) in "running water." But other modes came to be accepted as new situations arose. There may also be such a concession in 7.4, where the whole community is no longer required to fast before catechumens are baptized.

10.7 -- the hitherto ummentioned prophets (see 11.3, 7-12) receive a concessional footnote with reference to their freedom in prayer practices, which helps link (awkwardly) two separate blocks of material which have been brought together in the developing Didache tradition.

15.1-2 -- as Didache 11-13 indicates, the kind of Christian ministry with which the Didache is mainly concerned is that of itinerant apostles, prophets, and teachers. But a more settled ministry gradually came about (see already 13.1), and thus 15.1-2 was introduced to cover the new situation.

4. Supplementary Evidence from Style and Content. Finally, other more subtle evidence from style and/or content [[62]] can be introduced to support the above clues and to indicate additional lines of development behind the form of the Didache preserved for us. For example, within the Two Ways section, 3.1-6 clearly has its own style in comparison to its context. But if it is an insertion into the Two Ways tradition, it is a more ancient one than Didache 1.3b-2.1 since it is present in <2Dctr>2 and CO, but not in Barnabas (see also §2:4). Again, it could be argued that Didache 8, which differs both in general style and in content from its surrounding context, is an insertion (by way of the idea of "fasting") into a formerly more unified section on baptism-eucharist (chs. 7, 9-10). Indeed, Eth attests a (reworked?) form of Didache material in which 8.1-2a (fasting-prayer) has been appended to 11.3-13.7 (prophets-apostles-teachers) to form a unit dealing with "false prophets and hypocrites" (see §7:6). It is unlikely that 11.3-13.7 plus 8.1-2a existed as a unit before the present form of the Didache took shape. But it is at least probable that certain smaller components such as 8.1-2a once circulated apart from their present Didache context (Matt. 6.1-5, 16-18 is based on similar material). The "Lord's Prayer" in 8.2b has been added after the analogy of Matthew 6.9ff. (its original independence is supported by Luke 11.1ff.), but it is impossible to tell at what stage in the development behind the Didache this took place (note that 11.3 and 15.3-4 have not been filled out so neatly with the appropriate "gospel" texts!).

In fact, chapters 11-13 also show indications of having been constructed from smaller, separate blocks of material. The heart of this section is the instruction on itinerant (apostles and) prophets (11.3-12), which has its own separate rubric (11.3), and has extended its influence into previous (10.7) and subsequent (13.1; 15.1-2) material. Less extensive but also influential is the similar concerm for itinerant "teachers" (11.1-2; 13.2; 15.1-2). Apparentlytraveling prophets and teachers represent the main type of ministry respected by the Didache tradition (15.1-2; see §9:3). But into this context has been introduced a section on traveling [[63]] Christians in general (12.1-5), and, as a way of implementing the admonition of 13.1-2, a block of Jewish halaka on offering the "first fruits" as support for God's ministers and the needy (13.3-7). This last section has been made to apply to the prophets by symbolically identifying them with the original "high priests" (13.3b -- later developments of this
tradition substitute "bishop" and other clergy, or retain "priests" in a Christian context; see §7:5). Any attempt to
explain in detail how all these materials came together would be even more conjectural than the above analysis. But one feature stands out -- 11.1-2 is not entirely natural in its present position (11.3 is the stylistic parallel to 7.1; 9.1) but would make an admirable concluding section to the Two Ways. It is thus tempting to speculate that, in various stages, Didache 6.3-10.8 was added to the Two Ways until a longer manual dealing with the reception of catechumens into the congregation (at Easter) was formed, with 11.1-2 displaced from its original position but retained at the conclusion to the expanded manual. This, in turn, led to the gradual incorporation of 11.3-13.7, and ultimately to the form of the Didache known to us.

5. Toward a Reconstruction of the Stages of Development Behind Our Didache. Although the present evidence is insufficient to permit a confident, concrete, and detailed reconstruction of all the stages of development behind the Didache, some observations are possible by way of summary.

(1) The oldest controllable material is the originally Jewish Two Ways tradition, which had already been subject to a geat deal of development (see §2:4-5) before it became part of the larger Didache -- 3.1-6 represents an older, pre-Didache and perhaps pre-Christian addition to this base, while 1.3b-2.1 is a Christian contribution that may have been added by the Didachist himself.

(2) The Two Ways instruction was united with teaching about baptism (7.1-4) to provide a manual covering the reception of catechumens. Probably the prayers of chapters 9-10 (including 10.8, for the "ointment") also found their [[64]] place in this manual because they were relevant for the baptismal-eucharist service at which catechumens were received. It is possible that this manual once circulated separately, with 11.1-2 as its conclusion (so also Audet). It is not clear when 8.1-3 was added, but the idea of fasting in 7.4 furnished the necessary link (the
"Lord's Prayer" in 8.2b may have been an even later addition). Apparently 10.7 is an adjustment made in the light of 11.3-12. The food laws of 6.3 reflect Jewish-Christian interest and seem to have been added (at a relatively early date?) to supplement the Two Ways, as another aspect of the "Lord's yoke" (6.2).

(3) The material in 11.3-15.4 is loosely unified around the theme of community relationships -- toward traveling ministers (11.3-12), migrant Christians (12. 1-5) ministers who settle (13.1-2), indigenous clergy (15.1-2), and fellow Christians (15.3-4). The instructions of 13.3-7 have been introduced to show how the settled ministers (and the needy; see 15.4) can be supported, and this "first fruits" context had probably influenced the inclusion of 14.1-3 (on Christian "sacrifice") at this point. It may well be that this entire block had its own separate development (paralleling 1.1-11.2), and at a later date came to be appended to 11.2 because 11.1-2 also mentioned itinerant Christian ministers. Certainly 15.1-2 is one of the most recent stages of the developing tradition.

(4) The background of the apocalyptic-parenetic section in Didache 16 is especially vague, although it may have some relationship to older Two Ways thinking (see §2:3, 7). As it now stands, it forms an appendix with few clear ties to what precedes.

If this all seems overly complex, let the reader consider the subsequent history of the Didache materials (§7, §10). Neither simplicity nor straight-line development characterize the production of such church manuals. We are not dealing with a copyrighted document, which is the result of one person's endeavors, but with a conservative, living community [[65]] tradition which can occasionally (sometimes rather accidentally) be glimpsed in a state of suspended animation, as it were, by means of the various pieces of surviving Christian "literature" which represent these interests. The Doctrina gives us one (early?) glimpse, the Didache another, and the Apostolic Constitutions another (later). But for the most part we are left to conjecture if we wish to explain in detail how the various developments came about. Not only is such conjecture legitimate, but occasionally it may also be accurate.

§9. The Christianity Represented by the Didache

1. Ethno-Religious Background. Our knowledge of the kind of Christianity represented by the Didache is severely limited because of the nature of the document. Theology, in even a rudimentary sense, is almost completely lacking. We are dealing with liturgy and polity -- with church orders -- and with only a small sampling of that. And we must constantly be aware of the fact that ideas which are simply reproduced from older materials preserved, with little change, in the present form of the Didache do not necessarily represent the main interests and beliefs of the community for which this form of the Didache manual was produced. Repetition of traditional beliefsdoes not always imply conscious agreement with what the originators of the tradition had in mind.

The pronounced (hellenistic) Jewish background of this Christianity is obvious from the Didache's use of particularly Jewish source materials (especially the Two Ways), and its concern for "Jewish-Christian" type problems (food laws [6.3], fasts and prayers of the "hypocrites" [8.1-2a], high priestly office and contribution of "first fruits" in the church [13.3-7], and the Christian "sacrifices" [14.1-3]). But Christianity in general, and Eastern (including Egypt and Asia Minor) Christianity in particular, retained such more or less conscious vestiges of its Jewish heritage for decades and centuries [[66]] after the "victory" of gentile Christianity. This tells us nothing about the ethnic background of the Didache community or its leaders. They were Christians building on a Jewish base -- and more than just a Jewish scriptural ("Old Testament") base. But this does not mean they were necessarily of Jewish descent. The subtitle of the Didache, "... to the nations/gentiles" is no more decisive here than are the references in 9.4 and 10.5 to the church scattered throughout the entire world, although such allusions may weigh the scales in the direction of predominantly gentile recipients for the present form of the Didache.

2. Practices of the Community. The practices of the community seem to have included the following: (1) careful (ethical) catechetical instruction preceding baptism (7.1; 11.1); (2) prebaptismal fasting by the initiants and the one who will baptize them (7.4); (3) baptism in the threefold name (7.1, 3; but cf. 9.5) by the best available means (7.1-3); (4) probably baptism was followed by a special eucharistic meal with the initiants (9.1-10.6); (5) possibly an anointing with oil followed this meal -- or perhaps came directly after baptism (10.8 var.); (6) regular fasts on Wednesdays and Fridays (8.1; see 1.3b); (7) weekly(?) meetings on the "Lord's Day" (= Sunday? see 14.1-3; 16.2), which included a meal of some sort, prayer, and confession (private? cf. 4.14); (8) recitation of the "Lord's Prayer" thrice daily (8.2-3); (9) possibly also a daily community gathering (4.2; see 16.2); (10) regular attention to inner-community discipline and prayer (15.3f.; see 1.3b; 2.7; 4.3; 4.14), as well as the performance of "works" such as almsgiving (15.4; see 1.5-6; 4.4-8; 11.12; 13.4) and systematic contributions (13.3-7); and (11) attention to hospitality for the traveling Christian, whether layperson or leader (11.3-- 12.5). From all indications, the community was not (or its background had not been) particularly rich and thus was rather careful about economic matters (11.5f., 9, 12; 12.2-5; 13.1-7). [[67]]

3. Leadership. With respect to leadership,\3/ the Didache community not only remembers but has preserved rules governing the days of itinerant apostles and prophets who would minister for one or two days without asking any pay (11.3-12). It also is concerned with prophets and teachers who decide to settle for a more or less permanent period, and with their means of support (13.1-7; cf. 11.1-2). The most recent development, however, seems to have been the rise of a settled ministry through bishops and deacons appointed by the community itself (15.1-2). It is possible that some sort of itinerant ministry still survived, but it has become the exception rather than the rule. It should be noted that in discussing these various types of ministry, the Didache pictures the community as self-governing and as exercising authority over its ministers (see 6.1; 11.1-2; 12.1; 15.1, etc.) -- in fact, it must be warned not to exercise too much control over prophets (10.7; 11.7; 11.11f.) and not to despise native leaders (15.2)!

\3/For an extended discussion of early Christian leadership, see Grant, Introduction, 141ff.


It is not entirely clear how the functions of these various Leaders were related one to another and to the community at large. Apparently the teachers were at least in charge of moral instruction like the Two Ways (11.1-2). The "apostles" seem to be roughly synonymous with "prophets" (11.5-6). The prophets receive the most emphasis, and can play a definite role in leading liturgy (10.7) -- "they are your high priests" (13.3b). We do not know how liturgy was conducted in the absence of a prophet or teacher (cf. 13.4), but presumably the manual was written partly to solve such a dilemma.

4. Commandments, Gospel, and Christian Conduct. The general attitude of Didache Christianity toward Christian conduct, insofar as it can be recovered, is similar to the rigorous ethical approach evident in Barnabas (§5:4-5). This is, [[68]] of course, almost self-understood in that the Two Ways catechism is extremely important for both traditions. In the Didache version of this approach, however, "the gospel" (see 11.3; 15.3-4) and its prescriptions are much more in evidence\4/ -- for example, the summary of Torah in terms of love for God and neighbor and the (negative) "golden rule" (1.2); love even for enemies (1.3); active submission to antagonism of various sorts (1.4); threefold baptism (7.1, 3); "Lord's Prayer" (8.2); sayings of Jesus (9.5); sin against the prophetic spirit (11.7); workman worth his wages (13. 1); apocalyptic exhortation (16.1ff.). Nevertheless, the characteristically Barnabean emphasis is also present in exhortations to observe the righteous commands (3.8b; 4.13; 11.2; cf. 1.5; 13.5, 7) and in the allusion to the "Lord's yoke" (6.2; cf. Barn. 2.6). Furthermore, the function of the "word" in the Christian proclamation is attested in 4.1 (see §5:8), almost side by side with the emphasis on one's labor in behalf of salvation (4.6; see §5:4).

\4/The relationship between the Didache and the "gospel tradition" is discussed in detail by H. Koester. See also


5. Eschatology and Future Salvation. It is only in chapter 16 that the Didache approaches the eschatological orientation which pervades Barnabas (§2:2-3, §5:3). It is true that the Two Ways section aludes to "the reward" (4.7b; 5.2c = Barn. 19.11a; 20.2c), and the prayers repeat traditional language about the coming "kingdom" and the activity of "evil" or the "Evil One" (8.2; 9.4; 10.5), the passing away of "this world" and
the coming of the Lord (10.6), but these are extremely faint echoes and inspire no confidence that the community which used them was waiting with bated breath for the consummation. Apart from chapter 16 we find that such matters as "the Lord's return," resurrection, judgment, and final salvation have no real role in the Didache. There are a few references to "judgment" in Didache 1-15, but none of them are strictly eschatological (4.3; 5.2; 11.11f.). The "resurrection" is mentioned only in 16.6f. There is no clear [[69]] concept of a new creation in the last days (cf. 4.10b[?], but only general exhortations to "watch" and "be ready" (16.1) so as to be "perfect" (16.2; see 1.4; 6.2; 10.5) and "endure" to salvation (16.5; cf. 1.4 var.; 5.2m; 8.2; 10.5).

6. Absence of "Traditional" Soteriology. The Didache says very little about the traditional soteriological categories of sin, repentance, and satisfaction. The Two Ways section seems to approach this subject in 4.6, "If youshould appropriate something through your labor, give it [i.e., to the needy] as a ransom for your sins" (cf. the form in Barn. 19.10d), but the thrust here seems to be that social justice in a communal society is included in the road to salvation -- the way of righteousness. In 4.14 and again in 14.1, confession of transgressions is treated as a prerequisite for meaningful community worship -- but not as a presupposition for salvation. Similarly, repentance in
15.3 is more a matter of community discipline than of soteriology in the modern sense. This also seems to be true of 10.6, where lack of "holiness" calls for "repentance." The general prerequisite to participation in the community life appears to have been baptism "in the Lord's Name" (9.5; cf. §9:2:3), but the theological significance of baptism is never treated (explicitly or implicitly). There is no indication in the Didache that an initial repentance connected with the idea of personal sinfulness for which Jesus' death atones was considered basic to the Christian life (cf. §5:7).

7. Gnosis, Revelation, and Exegesis. As for any overtones of "gnosis," exegetical or otherwise (§5:1-2), they are quite incidental in the Didache. The prayers refer to "life and gnosis" (9.3) and "gnosis, faith and immortality" (10.2) which God has "made known" (see §5:2:5) through Jesus. Again, in 11.2 we find a general reference to the "righteousness and gnosis of the Lord," which apparently is identified with (at least) the Two Ways instruction (also called "gnosis" in Barn. 18.1) . Otherwise we read about "knowing" (i.e., discerning) the true character of a prophet (11.8) or a recipient of hospitality (12.1), or of "knowing" who rewards [[70]] the almsgiver (4.7). Nor is there any emphasis on "pneumatic" exegesis, although 10.3 alludes to "pneumatic food and drink" (apparently the eucharist), and the prophets of 11.7-12 are said to speak out "in the spirit" (see §5:2:20). The Didache does contain a few explicit quotations of various sorts (1.6; 8.2; 9.5b; 14.3; 16.7; cf. §9:4 and the Indexes) but there is no indication that special insight is required to understand them.\5/

\5/On the problem of the Didache's use of biblical sources, see Grant, Introduction, 74-75.


8. Jesus the Lord. The references to "Jesus" by name are limited to the prayers of 9.2f. and 10.2(f.), where the frozen liturgical phrase "Jesus your child/servant" is repeated in several places\6/ (see also 10.8) -- in 9.2 it is parallel to "David your child/servant." In the same context (9.4), the title "Jesus Christ" is involved liturgically. "Christ" occurs nowhere else in the Didache (but Georg includes it in 1.4; 10.3; 15.4; 16.8), although in 12.4f. reference is made to "Christian" and to "Christ-peddler." By far the favorite Christological title in the Didache is kurioV -- Lord. It is unambiguously applied to Jesus in the preserved subtitle of the Didache as well as in 8.2; 9.5 (twice); 11.2b (second occurrence); 11.4; 12.1; 15.4; 16.1; 16.7f. The tradition also probably had Jesus in mind in such (ambiguous) passages as 4.1; 6.2; 10.5; 14.1, 3 (twice); and 15.1. Quite ambiguous are 4.12f.; 11.2 (first occurrence); 11.8, although probably the final author-editor of the Didache also applied these to Jesus. Finally, on one clear occasion Jesus is referred to as "your holy Name" (10.2 -- cf. 9.5; 10.3; 12.1).\7/ It is only in the "trinitarian" formulas of 7.1 and 3 that the title "Son" is applied to Jesus (cf. 16.4 on the deceiver). Thus, the most that can be said is that Christology is incidental to the Didache -- it is echoed, in various forms, especially in the liturgical [[71]] passages, but this cannot be called "theological reflection." In general, the identity of "Jesus" and "Lord" is simply assumed. He is never explicitly called "God," and his functions are seldom defined with any precision (e.g., 16.7f. describes his apocalyptic role, but nowhere is he pictured as creator or revealer or savior --there is no reference to his blood, suffering, death, etc.).

\6/Cf. Acts 3.13, 26; 4.27, 30; 1 Clem. 59.2 ff.; Mart. Polyc. 14.1, 3; 20.2; Diognetus 8.9, 11; 9.1; see Grant,
Introduction, 110f.

\7/Cf. 1 Clem. 58.1; 59.3; 60.4; Barn. 16.8 (§5:7); Hermas, Sim. 9.14.5f.; see Grant, Introduction, 111-112.


9. God the Father. References to "God" are frequent: he is the creator (1.2; see also 5.2i), the God of David (10.6), whose word has gone forth (4.1; cf. 6.1), who exercises judgment on his prophetic agents (11.11), who is God of slaves as well as of masters (4.10f.). In 10.3, this creator God is called "Almighty Master." Nor is the concept of the divine "Father" lacking -- but it occurs primarily in the liturgical portions of the Didache -- in prayers (8.2; 9.2f.; 10.2; 10.8) and in the "trinitarian" formulas (7.1, 3) and also in the almsgiving interpolation of 1.5 (the Dctr parallel has "Lord"; Hermas has "God"). We have already noted (§9:8) passages in which "Lord" might refer to God.

10. "Spirit" and "spirits." Apart from the "trinitarian" formulas of Didache 7, Holy Spirit as a divine agent (person?) is scarcely to be found (but see Georg in 11.7-8). Perhaps the majority of older translations are correct in reading 4.10b in this light -- "he comes not to call preferentially, but (to call those) whom the (Holy) Spirit prepared" -- but it is also possible that the text means "... to call those for [in?] whom he prepared the spirit [of righteousness?]" (cf. §5:10). In any case, this reflects Two Ways theology and not necessarily that of the Didache author-editor or community. It should at least be noted here that elsewhere in the Didache, "spirit" is anthropomorphic (POx at 1.4), or refers to the characteristic "pneumatic-prophetic" form of discourse (en pneumati 11.7-12; cf. §5:2:20 on the "gnostic" use of this phrase in Barnabas). [[72]]

§10. Questions of Higher Criticism: Date, Authorship, Origin
(see also §6, Introduction).

1. Alleged Use of Didache Materials. Because of its extremely complicated background and its continuing evolution even after the preserved form(s) had been reached, it is difficult to trace (and thus localize) with any confidence the use of this precise form of the Didache tradition by ancient authors.\8/ For example, one of the fragments traditionally ascribed to Irenaeus cites a passage that in content resembles Didache 14.3 as coming from "the second of the apostolic constitutions." \9/ Undoubtedly this is an allusion to some form of the church manual tradition with which we are concerned, but which form? And was it really a form known in Asia Minor-Rome-Gaul in the last half of the second century (i.e., can we accept the Irenaeus identification)? It would be exciting to build up some theories about how Didache 14 once was in "the second" of the constitutions, while the Two Ways (or 1.1-11.2?; see §8:5:3) formed "the first," but such hypotheses are only as solid as their foundations, which in this case are quite shaky. Similarly, there are several references in Clement of Alexandria to Didache-like material which cannot be explained as allusions based on Barnabas. Nevertheless, Clement does not cite enough such materiaI to provide sufficient control for determining his relationship to our form(s) of the Didache, nor does he attach any helpful label to this material (once it may be called "scripture"). There is no doubt that various forms of the Didache tradition (and its sources) existed long before Clement and were already being reworked in various ways (Barnabas, Hermas). Thus Clement's evidence must be used with caution and the same must be said of other alleged "quotations" and allusions, as, [[73]] for example, the occasional parallels to Didache in the third-century Didascalia manual.

\8/For a general survey of the possibilities, see Grant, Introduction, 13-33.

\9/In Stieren's ed., frg. 38 (Harvey, frg. 36). The background of this fragment is mysterious, and it is impossible to say whether it is authentically from Irenaeus.


2. References to Documents Known as "Didache." This much is clear: several writers and lists fom the beginning of the fourth century and onward refer to a writing known as the "Teaching" (Didach, Doctrina) or "Teachings" (Didacai, Doctrinae) of the Apostles. Unfortunately they do not cite exact excerpts, and thus there is no way of telling what the precise relationship might have been between what they cite and our Didache. For example, Eusebius (ca. 325) refers to "the alleged Teachings [plural] of the Apostles" as among the illegitimate (nwqa) candidates for New Testament scripture (HE 3.25.4; see also §6:1). Did he have our form of the Didache in mind? Similarly, the pseudo-Cyprianic tract Adversus Aleatores 4 from about tne same date (?) loosely alludes to material allegedly found "in doctrinis apostolorum," but precision of quotation seems lacking. In his festal letter of 367, Athanasius of Alexandria includes reference to "the so-called Teaching of the Apostles" among noncanonical literature considered suitable for use in instructing new Christians. Probably our document or something very similar to it is meant. Much later, the "List of Sixty Books" (ca. 600) contains an entry which appears to refer to a single{?} apocryphal work called "The Travels and Teachings of the Apostles" (cf. pseudo-Clementine literature!), while the stichometric listing of Nicephorus (ca. 820) refers to "The Teaching of the Apostles" under the category of New Testament Apocrypha. The fact that Nicephorus lists its "Didache" as having some 200 stichoi (lines of relatively fixed length) does not help us at all in determining the precise identity of the work, since we have no way of telling how this number was determined, or whether the number itself has been corrupted in transmission.\10/ By drawing generalizations from the other figures listed in the Stichometry for known New Testament books, we would expect the extant form of the Didache [[74]] to have about 3O0 stichoi (not 200 -- there seem to have been about 35 letters per stichos). Comparison in another direction is even more striking: "Barnabas," according to Nicephorus, has 1,360 stichoi (we would expect only about 850-900 [as in the Claromontanus list; see §6:2] for the present form of the epistle), while the extant text of the Didache is about one third the length of Barnabas (thus much more than "200 stichoi")! There are a few other references to a "Didache" apocryphon in the later fathers (sixth to fourteentb centuries), but they all seem to depend on such lists as the above.

\10/On this matter, see also Grant, Introduction, 74.


3. Undisputed Use of the Didache. Our quest for a terminus ante quem, a date before which our Didache must have been in circulation, and for a localized sphere of influence (to assist in determining whence the Didache originated) is somewhat advanced when the various versions and adaptations of the tradition are introduced into the discussion. Certainly the fourth century provides ample evidence that our form of the Didache is not only in existence, but is influential in the east, especially in Egypt -- see POx, ApCo. And from the fifth century we have the Coptic fragment and possibly the Georgian version. Thus it is safe to say that third-century Egypt (and Eastern Christianity) knew our form of the Didache -- as well as related materials (see CO, Eth, Syntagma-Fides, Shenuti, etc.).

4. Internal Clues as to Place of Origin. When we search the words of the Didache itself for clear indications of origin and date, the result is almost complete frustration. In the prayer of 9.4, the allusion to wheat gathered from the "mountains" in order to make a loaf of bread would seem to preclude Egypt as the basis of the analogy, since in ancient Egypt the fertile regions were located in the Nile Valley (nourished by the annual flooding), and not on hillsides or mountains. Thus many commentators have seen Syria, or more particularly Palestine, as the home of this imagery. It is noteworthy that the (Egyptian?) ApCo lacks this reference to mountains in its reworked form of the Didache. Another possible geographical clue in the Didache has sometimes [[75]] been seen in the reference to "warm" water in 7.2. But it is by no means clear that the text has warm baths in mind, such as one might find more readily in Syria than in Egypt, and thus this "evidence" is negligible (again, ApCo lacks this reference).

5. Alleged "Primitive" Elements in the Didache. Thus we are reduced to talking about the relative "primitiveness" or "development" of the Christianity reflected in the Didache, of its relation to identifiable sources or movements, and of the "most likely" location(s) from which such an approach to Christianity might have emerged. As the commentaries and studies of the Didache well attest, this is an extremely tenuous approach.\11/ Some of the most frequently discussed items in this context are the following:

\11/See also the discussion in Grant, Introduction, 75f.


(1) Church government in the Didache (chs. 11-13; 15) looks "primitive" with its concern for itinerant apostles, prophets, and teachers, and with its lack of any indication that ecclesiastical authority rests in a monarchial bishop (cf. the emphasis placed on the bishop by Ignatius of Antioch, ca. 110) or even in a college of presbyters (cf. 1 Clem. 42; from ca. 95).

(2) The prophetism of Didache 11 has variously been assessed as "early" (cf. 1 John, Hermas), or perhaps related to the Montanist revival of prophecy in the later second century (ca. 155/170) in Asia Minor.

(3) The language of the prayers in Didache 9-10 sounds "early" (cf. the early chapters of Acts; see §9:8).

(4) At numerous points the Didache tradition shows its Jewish background and "Jewish-Christian" interests (see §9:1). On the other hand, 8.1f. is critical of certain Pharisaic-Jewish (?) practices. Thus it is sometimes argued that the Didache was written (soon) after the "break" between church and synagogue (ca. 70-135).

(5) In its present form, the Didache appears to have a rather wide acquaintance with the synoptic tradition (1.2-5; [[76]] 7.1/3 [?]; 8.1-2; 9.5b; 11.7; 14.2 [?]; 15.3 [?]; 16.1, 3-8; see §9:4), often in a "harmonized" text form. This tends to suggest a date in the later second century (around the time of Justin and his student Tatian, who composed a "harmony" [ca. 170]), rather than an early second- or late first-century date.

(6) In two passages, outside of the Two Ways tradition proper, the Didache has material which clearly is related to, and possibly derived from, Hermas (see Did. 1.5) and Barnabas (Did. 16.2). If the Didache has used Hermas and Barnabas here, of course, it must be dated later than those sources (whenever one dates them and whichever stage of their development was known to the Didachist).

(7) The Didache shows almost no interest in doctrine, even in Christocentric soteriology (§9:6), nor in polemic against heterodoxy (cf. 8.1-2a), and thus seems more primitive than (or remote from) later second-century interests.

6. Conclusions Concerning Date. This list could be swelled by discussion of more detailed problems such as the doxology to the Lord's Prayer (8.2), which has been claimed as Syrian in origin but also shows affinities with Egyptian witnesses, or the use of certain words which are not well attested in earliest Christian literature (12.5 "Christ-peddler," 13.5 "bread dough") or which are used in a different (more "primitive") way from later Christian vocabulary (15.1 "appoint"). But there is little value in multiplying such "evidence." All that can emerge is the twofold impression: the Didache contains a great deal of material which derives from very early (i.e., first-century and early second-century) forms of (Jewish-)Christianity; but it would be difficult to argue convincingly that the preserved form (that is, in H) of the Didache is earlier than mid-second century. The very conservative nature of the church manual tradition, which is especially obvious in its later development (e.g., Eth continues to refer to itinerant prophets, although ApCo has reworked and abridged this section; ApCo retains the "archaic" prayer forms, etc.), is sufficient explanation for the "primitive" factors in the Didache. [[77]] And the corollary of this observation is that the date ascribed to the extant form of the Didache is largely irrelevant when particular items in the tradition are discussed.

7. Probable Place of Origin. As for the location at which our form of the Didache was composed, similar problems are present. Perhaps the prayers derive ultimately from Syria-Palestine (§10:4); this does not allow us to say that the entire compilation has the same background. It seems clear that the Didache represents Eastern Christianity. Probably it also comes from a semirural rather than a large urban environment -- thus the itinerant ministry, the basically agricultural-pastoral symbolism and economy (esp. ch. 13), although "trades" are also in view (12.3f.). If Egypt seems somewhat more probable than Syria, it is because the later uses of the Didache tradition (ApCo, Eth) and the earliest direct textual evidence (POx, Cop) point most strongly to that area.

8. The Author-Editor. Nothing definite can be said concerning the identity of the editor(s) responsible for the extant H-type recension of the Didache, or for the earlier developments that led to it. It is possible that this is the work of an itinerant "teacher" and/or school of such teachers/preachers, but the whole aim seems to be to let the "apostolic" teachings speak for themselves. There is no evidence to indicate the ethnic background of the author-editor(s). [[78]]

//end of introduction to Didache 6.3-end//

Translation: [[163]]

THE DIDACHE 6.3--16.8

[Continuation of the Two Ways Catechism (Did 1.1-6.2)]

Concerning food (6.3) [§8.5.2]

3 Now concerning food, observe the traditions as best you can [§8.3] But be sure to refrain completely from meat which has been sanctified before idols, for it represents the worship of dead gods.

Concerning baptism, fasting, and prayer (7.1-8.3) [§8.4; §8.5.2; §9.2]

7 Baptize in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit [[164]] [§9.8-10], in running water 2 But if you do not have running water, use whatever is available And if you cannot do it in cold water, use warm [§10.4] 3 But if you have neither, pour water on the head three times -- in the name of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit [§8.3] 4 And prior to baptism, both he who is baptizing and he who is being baptized should fast, along with any
others who can And be sure that the one who is to be baptized fasts for one or two days beforehand [[165]]

8 But do not let your fasts fall on the same days as "the hypocrites" [see Matt 6.16 ff.], who fast on Monday and Thursday Rather, you should fast on Wednesday and Friday. 2 Nor should you pray as "the hypocrites" do [see Matt 6.5ff.], but pray as the Lord commanded in his gospel [§9.4], thus: Our Father who is in heaven, may your name be revered May your kingdom come, may your will be done on earth as it is done in heaven. Let us
partake today of our heavenly fare [cf 10.3], And forgive what we owe accordingly as we forgive those who are in debt to us. And do not bring us into testing, but rescue us from evil [cf.10.5]. For power and glory are yours forever [Matt 6.9 ff.] 3 Thrice daily you should pray in that manner.

Concerning the giving of thanks -- in connection with the Eucharist (9.1-10.8) [§8.4-5; §9.2]

9 Now concerning the giving of thanks [cf 6.3] Give thanks in the following manner 2 First, concerning the cup: We thank you, our Father [§9.9], for the holy vine of David your servant, which you have made known to us
[§9.7] through Jesus your Servant [§9.8]. Glory to you forever! [[166]]

3 And concerning the broken loaf: We thank you, our Father, for the life and knowledge [§9.7] which you have made known to us through Jesus your Servant. Glory to you forever! 4 Just as this loaf previously was scattered on the mountains [§10.4], and when it was gathered together it became a unity, So may your Church be gathered
together from the ends of the earth into your kingdom. For glory and power are yours forever, through Jesus Christ! [§9.8.] 5 But let no one eat or drink from your Eucharist except those who are baptized [7.1-4] in the Lord's Name [§9.8] For the Lord also has spoken concerning this: Do not give what is holy to dogs [Matt 7.6]

10 And after you have been filled, give thanks as follows:

2. We thank you, Holy Father, for your holy Name [§9.8] which you have made to dwell in our hearts; and for the knowledge [§9.7] and faith and immortality which you have made known to us through Jesus your Servant. Glory to you forever! [[167]] 3. You, Almighty Master [§9.9], created everything for your Name's sake; you have given food and drink to men\q for their pleasure, so that they might give you thanks.\q/ And to us you have graciously given spiritual food and drink [see 8.2], and life eternal through Jesus\r/ your Servant. [[168]] 4. Most of all, we
thank you because you are mighty.\s/ Glory to you forever!\t/ 5. Lord, remember your Church- rescue it from all evil [see 8.2] and perfect it [§9.5] in your love- and gather it, the sanctified one,\u/ from the four winds into your kingdom which you have prepared for it. For power and glory are yours forever!\t/ [[169]] 6. Let grace come,\v/ and this world pass away [§9.5].\t/ Hosanna to the God\w/ of David [§9.9] If anyone is holy, let him come; if anyone is not, let him repent [see 15.3] Marana Tha (Our Lord, Come). Amen 7. But permit the prophets [11.3-12] to give thanks as they see fit [§8.3]. 8. And concerning the ointment,\x/ give thanks as follows: We thank you, (our) Father, for the fragrant ointment which you have made known to us through Jesus your Servant Glory to you forever! Amen

\q/ The Cop fragment begins here, reading " the sons of man" and lacking "so that they might give you thanks."
\r/ So Cop (see Georg); but H lacks "Jesus."
\s/ Georg adds "and good" (cf. ApCo, "faithful and true").
\t/ Cop adds "Amen" in 10.4, 5, 6a.
\u/ Cop lacks "the sanctified one" (cf. ApCo).
\v/ Cop has "May the Lord come" (see ApCo, which places "Marana Tha" [10.6d] here; cf. Rev. 22.20).
\w/ So H (Georg?). Cop has "house of David" (cf. Origen to Matt. 21.9, 15), and ApCo "son of David" (Matt. 21.9, 159. Possibly Did. 10.6b originally read "to David's Lord" (see Ps. 110.1), which easily could give rise to the three preserved readings. A similar textual problem is found in Acts 7.46, "house/ God/ [Lord?] of Jacob."
\x/ The prayer for the "ointment" (perfume) is found in slightly divergent forms in Cop and ApCo, but it is lacking in H and Georg (see §8.2). Its style parallels (imitates?) 9.2, 3; 10.2.
[[@@RAK-- Note in margin of text: Gere[[?]] CTINOYYI = incense]]


The approved teacher (11.1-2) [§8.4-5]

11 Thus, whoever comes and teaches you all the aforesaid things [see 7.1], receive him. 2. And if the teacher [§9.3;
§4.3] himself turns aside and teaches another didache which undermines the aforesaid, do not listen to him [cf 11.12] But if his teaching fosters righteousness and knowledge [§9.7] of the Lord, receive him as the Lord [cf 4.1a; 11.4; Matt 10.40; John 13.20] [[170]]


Concerning apostles and prophets (11.3-12) [§9.3]

3. Now\y/ concerning the apostles and prophets Act in accordance with the precept of the gospel [§9.4]. 4. Every apostle who comes to you should\z/ be received as the Lord [see 11.2; 12.1]. 5. But he\z/ should not remain more than one day, and if there is some necessity a second as well; but if he should remain for three,\a/ he is a false prophet [cf 11.6, 9-10]. 6. And when the apostle departs, he should receive nothing but bread until he finds his next lodging But if he requests money, he is a false prophet.\a/ 7. And you must neither make trial of nor pass judgment on any prophet who speaks forth in the spirit For every (other) sin will be forgiven, but this sin will not be forgiven [see Matt 12.31]. 8. And not everyone who speaks forth in the spirit is a prophet, but only if he has the kind of behavior which the Lord approves From his behavior, then, will the false prophet and the true prophet be known 9 And every prophet who, in the [[171]] spirit,\b/ orders a table to be spread shall not eat therefrom; but if he does,
he is a false prophet [11.5-6] 10. And every prophet who teaches the truth, but does not do the things he teaches, is a false prophet [11.5-6]. 11. And every prophet who has met the test [cf. 12. 1] -- who is genuine -- and\c/ who performs a worldly mystery of the church but does not teach others to do what he is doing,\c/ he shall not be judged by you For he has his judgment with God -- for the ancient prophets also did similarly 12. And whoever says in the spirit, "Give me money," or anything else, do not listen to him [cf. 11.2] But if he says that it should be given for others who are in need, let no one judge him.\d/

\y/ For all practical purposes, ApCo lacks 11.3-12 (see §7.5).
\z/ Eth (cf. Cop) lacks "should....But he," possibly correctly in the light of the parallelism between 11.4-5 and 11.6.
\a/ Eth makes three days the maximum approved period (see 12.2), "and if he stays longer, he is a false prophet," and lacks 11.6.
\b/ Cop lacks "in the spirit."
\c/ So H (Georg): Cop has something like "...and witnesses (?) to a worldly tradition in the church," while Eth reads "who acts in the assembly of men and acts unlawfully."
\d/ Georg adds, "for what he has done will be judged by the Lord God" (see 11.11).


Hospitality toward traveling Christians (12.1-5)

12 But let everyone who comes to you in the Lord's Name [§9.8] be received, and then when you have examined him [cf. 11.11] you will know -- for you have insight -- the nature of the situation.\e/ If, on the one hand, he is simply passing through, help [[172]] him\f/ as much as you can. 2. But he must not remain with you except for two or three days if some necessity arises [cf. 11.5] 3. On the other hand, if he wants to settle among you [cf. 13.1] and knows a trade, let him work and eat.\g/ 4. But if he does not know a trade, use your own judgment to determine how he should live with you as a Christian without being idle. 5. But if he does not wish to cooperate, he is a Christ-peddler [§10.6] Beware of such!

\e/ Literally "you will know...right and left" or perhaps "you have insight (as to) right and left." On this peculiar idiom ("true and false"?), see Jonah 4.11; Acts of John 114 (and similar Gnostic usage).
\f/ Cop abruptly ends here, leaving the remainder of the column blank!
\g/ Georg adds "with you in all unity and peace."


Material support for God's ministers (13.1-7) [§8.4-5]

13 And every true prophet [11.3] who wishes to settle among you [cf. 12.3] deserves his food 2. Similarly, a true teacher [11. 1-2] also deserves, like the laborer, his food [cf Matt 10.10b] 3. Take, therefore, every first fruit -- of the produce of wine press and threshing floor, and of cattle and sheep -- and give it to the prophets For they are your high Priests 4. But if you have no prophet, give to the poor 5. If you make a batch of dough [§10.6], take the "first fruit" and give it in accord with the commandment [§9.4] 6 Similarly with a jug of wine or of oil,\h/ take the "first fruit" and give to the prophets 7 And so with money, and clothing, and every possession -- take whatever "first fruit" seems appropriate to you and give it in accord with the commandment [13.5] [[173]]

\h/ Eth (see ApCo) adds "or of honey."


The community "sacrifice" (14.1-3)

14 And when you gather together [§9.2] each Lord's Day, break bread and give thanks [9.1 ff.] But first confess your transgressions so that your "sacrifice" may be pure [see 4.14] 2 And let no one who has a quarrel with his friend join you until they are reconciled, lest your "sacrifice" be profaned [see Matt 5.23 f.] 3 For this is what the Lord was referring to: In every place and at all times offer a pure sacrifice to me [Mal. 1.11] For I am a great
King, says the Lord, and my name is marvelous among the nations [Mal. 1.14b] [[174]]

Respect for indigenous leaders (15.1-2)

15 Appoint for yourselves, then, bishops and deacons who are worthy of the Lord [cf. 13.1-2] -- men who are unassuming and not greedy, who are honest [cf. 1 Tim 3.2-13; Tit 1.5-9] and have been proved [cf 11.11; 12.1]. For they also are performing for you the task of the prophets [11.3] and teachers [11.1]. 2. Therefore, do not hold them in contempt, for they are honorable men among you [cf 13.3b], along with the prophets and teachers [[175]]

Community discipline and conduct (15.3-4) [§9.2.10]

3. And reprove one another [see 2.7], not irately but peaceably [see 4.3a], as you have it in the gospel [§9.4]. And let no one speak to any person who has wronged another,\i/ nor let him hear what is said among you until he repents [cf. 10.6]. 4. But perform your prayers [cf. 14.1?] and your acts of charity [see 1.5f.; 4.5-8; 13.5] and all your actions as you have it in the gospel of the Lord [§9.4].

\i/ So H (Georg?), but a minor change in the Greek would permit the reading "his friend/companion" (cf. 14.2).



16 Watch over your life [see 1.1] -- do not let your lamps be extinguished, nor your waist be ungirded [cf. Luke 12.35]. But be ready, for you do not know when our Lord is coming [see Matt. 24.42, 44; Mark 13.35; Luke 12.40] 2 And be gathered together frequently, seeking out the things which are necessary [[176]] for your souls [see §2.3] For the whole time of your faith will be of no use to you unless you are perfected in the last time [= Barn 4.9b; §2.3]. 3. For in the last days, false prophets and corrupters will abound [Matt 24.11], and they will turn the "sheep" into "wolves" and love will be changed to hate [Matt 24.12] 4. For as lawlessness increases, men will hate one another [cf 2.7], and persecute and betray [Matt 24.10], and then the world-deceiver will appear as a son of God and will do signs and wonders [Mark 13.22 par.], and the earth will be given into his hands and he will commit such abominations as have never been done before [see Dan 12.1; Mark 13.19 par.]. 5. Then the creation of men will come to the fire which tests and many will fail and will perish But those who endure in their faith will be saved [Mark 13.13 par.] by him who was accursed.\j/ 6. And then the signs of the truth will appear: first the sign spread out in heaven [Matt 24.30], then the sign of a sound of [[177]] a trumpet [Matt. 24.31; 1 Thess. 4.16], and thirdly, the resurrection of the dead [1 Cor 15.52] -- 7. yet not of all (the dead), but as it was said: The Lord will come and all his saints with him [Zech. 14.5b]. 8. Then the world will see the Lord coming on the clouds of heaven\k/ with power and dominion [Mark 13.26 parr.] to repay each man according to his work [Ps. 62.12; Matt. 16.27], with justice, before all men and angels. Amen.

\j/ H can mean this (cf. Barn. 7.9; Gal. 3.13), or "by the curse itself," of "by that which is cursed" (the earth?; see Gen. 3.17); Georg, however, has something like "from this frightful curse" (i.e.,the fiery test, or destruction). Audet takes the phrase to mean "from the grave itself" (cf. Rev. 21.4; 22.3).
\k/ MS H concludes here (with the remainder of the page left blank), but both Georg and ApCo lack the words "of heaven" and continue with a reference to the final judgment. The above translation follows Georg's ending, ApCo has "...with angels of his power, upon a kingly throne [Matt. 25.31], to judge the world-deceiving devil [16.4] and repay each person according to his work. Then the wicked will depart to eternal punishment, but the rightous will enter life eternal [Matt. 25.46], inheriting the things 'which eye saw not...[cites 1 Cor. 2.9],' and they will rejoice in the kingdom of God which is in Christ Jesus [see Matt. 25.34]."



6.3. In terms of content, this verse is unique in the Didache although it is stylistically parallel to 7.1; 9.1; 11.3 ("Now thus..."; cf. 10.1, 8; 15.4). Probably it represents a larger, older source which listed the various relevant food laws which Christianity had adopted from the Jewish "Noachic Laws" for sympathetic Gentiles (see Acts 15.20, 29; 21.25). When these specifics were omitted, possibly under the pressure of growing Christian "liberalism" (see Rom. 14; 1 Cor. 8; 1 Tim. 4.3ff.; Barn. 10; Diognetus 4.1), the "thus do" section of the teaching was softened to "bear what you can." But the Didache tradition drew the line at meat that had been slaughtered in pagan temples--in agreement with much of early Christianity (e.g., Acts 15.20; Rev. 2. 14, 20; Justin, Dial. 35.1-2; Ps-Clem. Hom. 7.4, 8; etc.; contrast 1 Cor. 8.4; 10.25!).

7.1-8.3. On the probable development of this section around the basic theme of baptism, see §8.4-5. The "hypocrites" tradition originally may have referred to Pharisaic practices (cf. Matt. 23.13), although the Didachist might mean simply practicing Jews (after A.D. [[164]] 70, Pharisaic Judaism became dominant). If the communities which later used the Didache (e.g., ApCo) are indicative of the earlier practices, the Christianity represented here held baptism once each year, at Passover/Easter time. The Two Ways tradition provided the material for prebaptismal instruction (Did. 7.1; 11.1 f.; see Athanasius in §10.2; contrast Matt. 28.19 f.?),
and after baptism the catechumens were anointed with oil (see to 10.8) and allowed to partake of their first Eucharist (see to 9. 1 ff.). According to 7.2-3, immersion in a river or a spring (cold, flowing water) was preferred practice, but still water (pools, cisterns, fonts) could be used if necessary (cf. Tert., Bapt. 4). As
a last resort, affusion was permissible--this is probably the earliest reference to that practice in Christianity (cf. Tert., Poen. 6; Bapt. 12; Acts of Thaddeus 4). The threefold formula was employed (so Matt. 28. 19; Justin, Apol. 61.3; Tert., Adv. Prax. 26; Acts of Peter with Simon 5, etc.; cf. 1 Cor. 6.11) rather than the also popular baptism "in the name of Jesus" (see 9.5; Eusebius' text of Matt. 28.19; Acts 2.38; 8.16; 10.48; 19.5; Acts of Paul and Thecla 34, etc.)--this does not, however, necessarily imply a conscious, full-blown "trinitarian" theology as it was later defined. Liturgy may provide the materials for theologizing as well as vice versa! The connection between fasting and baptism is widely attested in early Christianity (Justin, Apol. 61.2; Tert., Bapt. 19-20; Ps-Clem. Rec. 7.37; Hippolytus, Ap. Trad. 20.7; Passion of Paul 19; etc. (see Grant, 175). It is interesting that ApCo seems to understand Did. 8.1 as referring directly to fasts in passion week (thus including the pre-baptismal fast). But the contrast with (Pharisaic) Jewish fasts on Monday and Thursday (see b.Shabb. 24a; Ta'anit 2.4-7; cf. Luke 18.12) indicates a weekly, not an annual, practice. In view of the predilection of the Jubilees-Qumran Calendar for Wednesday-Friday-Sunday special days (see J. van Goudoever, Biblical Calendars [Leiden, 1961]), it would be interesting to know if and when that kind of Judaism practiced weekly fasts. In any event, the Wednesday and Friday fasts were widely observed in early Christianity (e.g., Tert., Ieiun. 2; Clement, Str. 7. [12]:75.2), although there also was reaction to this sort of ritualism (see Barn. 3.1-5; Hermas, Sim. 5.1; Diognetus 4.1).

Prayer three times each day (8.3) is an old Jewish practice (Ps. [[165]] 55.17; Dan. 6.10, 13; Qumran Manual 10.1-3) which was adapted in many Christian communities (e.g., Tert., Ieiun. 10; Clement, Str. 7. [7]:40.3), although it is not clear whether the Didache had the third-, sixth-, ninth-hour prayers in mind (as Tertullian and Clement of Alexandria), or dawn-noon-dusk (cf. Jewish practices). The form of the Lord's Prayer in 8.2 varies only insignificantly from Matt. 6.9 ff., and uses a doxology (lacking reference to "the kingdom," cf. 9.2, 3, 4; 10.2, 4, 5) which seems to have been known in Egypt (see the Coptic versions of Matt. 6.13) and Syria (§10.6).

9.1-10.8. Ever since the initial publication of the Didache, the prayers of chapters 9-10 have occasioned much discussion. At first glance they seem to represent a "Eucharist" liturgy--the (weekly) [[166]] ritual celebration of the "sacrament" of the Lord's Supper (see Ign. Philad. 4; Justin, Apol. 66.1, 67.5). But the mere occurrence of the noun eucharistia (9.1, 5) and related verbal forms (9.1, 2, 3; 10.1, 2, 3, 4, 8) must not be given too much weight, since these words originally indicated prayer and "giving thanks" in general (see Rom. 14.6; 1 Cor. 14.17; 1 Tim. 4.3; Rev. 4.9, etc.). Furthermore, the fact that a meal is in view in 10.1 (cf. Luke 22.20; 1 Cor. 11.25) and that 14.1 refers to a rite which more closely resembles the liturgical Eucharist as it came to be held (separately from any meal, as an "offering"), led many commentators to suggest that Did. 9-10 refers to early Christian "Love Feasts" (the "Agape" meal--cf. Jude 12) which were patterned after formal Jewish "fellowship" meals and which sometimes seem to have been held in association with the ritual Eucharist and also baptism (see Ign. Smyrn. 8.2). The background and early development of these practices are discussed in detail by G. Dix, The Shape of the Liturgy (Glasgow, 1945), ch. 4, who sees in Did. 9-10 a Love Feast (pp. 90-95). The absence of any reference to Jesus' body or blood, [[167]] or to "remembering" him (cf. 10.5) adds further support to the Love Feast hypothesis, although the rather technical use of eucharistia in 9.5 causes some hesitation. The freedom granted to the "prophets" in 10.7 (cf. 11.9) could fit either case, as could the unusual order of cup-loaf in 9.2 f. (see Luke 22.17, 19 f.; 1 Cor. 10.16).

But the problems and possible solutions extend beyond these ???natives. How are we to account for the "ointment" prayer in some traditions at 10.8? If it was artifically constructed in imitation of Did. 9.2, 3; 10.2, what was the interpolater's motive? He must have envisioned some connection between the ceremony of Did. 9-10 and the "ointment." And if 10.8 reflects an actual prayer used in the Didachist's Christianity, the same questions must be answered: what was its connection with the other prayers? They all obviously have similar origins! In a quite different vein, even if we grant an original Love Feast setting for the prayers (which seems probable), must we assume that the compiler of our form of the Didache tradition was conscious of this background? We must ask further concerning the use of these prayers in his experience, and his reasons (if any) for placing them in their present context in the Didache.

An important clue to solving such questions might be uncovered if the significance of the "ointment" or "perfume"
(fragrant oil) of 10.8 were known. It is not impossible that this too is a vestige from Christian Love Feasts, since the Jewish fellowship meal ritual included a blessing on aromatic spices ("ointment"?) which usually were burned (see Dix, Liturgy, 425 f.). But ointment/oil was used in many connections in early Christianity: for anointing the sick (Jas. 5.14) and the dead (Mark 16.1, etc.), anointing catechumens in preparation for baptism (esp. to exorcise evil spirits), mixing with the baptismal waters to symbolize the Holy Spirit's presence, and so on. And in at least two special rites, well known in Eastern Christianity, ointment is closely connected with the Eucharistic bread and cup: (1) at the ordination of bishops (Hippolytus, Ap. Trad. 4 [Ethiopic]); and (2) at the baptism-confirmation-communion service at Easter time (see to [[168]] 7.1, 4) when catechumens became full members of the community (Hippolytus, Ap. Trad. 20-23, etc.).

This annual Baptism-Eucharist service seems to provide the most satisfactory setting for Did. 9-10 -- indeed, for Did. 1-10 (see §8.4-5). The climax of this service was the special Eucharistic meal that immediately followed the anointing and baptism of the catechumen, and from which all nonbaptized persons were excluded (9.5; cf. Ethiopic Ap. Trad. 40 [see §7.6]). Such an approach to Did. 9-10 does not solve all the problems--we should expect 10.8 to precede the meal, and 10.7 is best explained as a vestige from the older Love Feast setting --but there seldom is a tidy answer to the enigmas of evolved literature!

The symbolism intended in the phrase "David's vine" (9.2) is not entirely clear--the best possibilities seem to be the Messianic hope (see Isa. 11.1; 2 Baruch 36-40; John 15. 1 ff.; Rev. 22. 16) or the new Israel concept (see Ps. 80.8 ff.; Isa. 5. 1 ff.; Jer. 2.21; Hos. 10.1; 4 Ezra 5.23; 9.21 f., etc.). The image in 9.4 seems to be that as the grain from which the loaf was made had come from widely scattered origins, so ultimately the widely dispersed
Church would be unified. The prayer of 10.2-5 echoes certain phrases of the "Lord's Prayer" (see 8.2)--the "holy Name," spiritual sustenance, rescue from evil, the doxology--which also are common in ewish table prayers. In 10.4-6 it is possible that antiphonal prayer is represented, with the leader saying one line and the congregation saying the next, or perhaps interjecting an "Amen" (see esp. Cop; cf. Justin, Apol. 67.5). The phrases in 10.6c,d are especially similar to Rev. 22.11, 20 (see 1 Cor. 16.22). The concession to "prophets" in 10.7 allows them to pray for a longer time, or more frequently--or perhaps to hold Eucharist as often as
they like--in comparison to other leaders (see §9.3). The symbolism of the "ointment" (cf. Exod. 30.25; Isa. 25.7 LXX) in 10.8 is not obvious-- perhaps the fellowship of believers is intended (see Ps. 133.2), or the presence of God's Spirit, or immortality (see ApCo; Did. 10.2; Ign. Eph. 17.1). [[169]]

11.1-2. Whatever its background (see §8.4-5), the present position of 11.1-2 provides an excellent transition to the section which follows by introducing the theme of how to tell a true from a false Christian minister. In general, these verses resemble Gal. 1.6-9 and 2 John 9-10; it is possible that 11.2a was originally
autobiographical -- "even if I, your teacher, turn...." [[170]]

11.3-12. The rubric of introduction in 11.3 parallels exactly 7.1; 9.1 (see 6.3). Some of the material in the section on "apostles" is paralleled in 12. 1-2. The use of "apostle" to indicate itinerant missionaries is not unknown in the New Testament (see Rom. 16.7[?]; 1 Cor. 12.28 f.; Phil. 2.25[?]; Acts 14.14, etc.), although from early times the title came to be reserved for "the Twelve" and Paul (see Grant, 160 ff.; note also the title of the Didache).
Similarly, "prophets" appear in the New Testament (1 Cor. 12.28 f.; 14.1; Acts 13.1, etc.; cf. Eph. 2.20; 4.11), and are treated with special care since their conduct "in the spirit" [§9.10] is noticeably different from normal activity (see Acts 11.27 f.; 21.10 f.). But just as there are false spirits (see to Barn. 18.1) there can be false prophets (Matt. 24.24, etc.), and some criterion for judging was needed in the community. Whereas 1 John 4.1 ff. advocates a doctrinal test, Did. 11.7 f. speaks of a testing of [[171]] conduct--with the divine dictates, or perhaps the life of the Lord (11.8b is ambiguous) as the standard. But even to this rule there can be an exception (11.11), if an acknowledged genuine prophet forms some personal action which otherwise would be suspect (is Hos. 1-3 in mind here? and the practice of "spiritual marriage" in early Christianity?). Implicitly at least, the "apostles" are identified with the "prophets" through the unexpected use of "false prophet" (not "false apostle"; 2 Cor. 11. 13; cf. Rev. 2.2) in 11.5-6; note that neither should derive profit from their ministries (11.6, 12) or give the impression of being a "free loader" (11.5, 9). Did. 13.1-2 returns to the theme of support for such ministers. It is not clear to what gospel "dogma" reference is being made in 11.3 -- possibly (with 13.1-2) to Matt. 10.10b, but Matt. 10.40 might be a better candidate (see 11.4). 12.1-5. This section on traveling Christians interrupts the treatment of prophets (see §8.4-5) and especially resembles 11.4-6. The [[172]] community is
obligated to show hospitality to the visitor who claims to be a Christian (12.1, 4) until they have been able to evaluate his claim-- presumably by observing his conduct and perhaps by other means. If he passes the test, they should aid him as best they can for as many as three days (12.2). Thereafter he should either leave or settle down to work (12.2-3)--Christians are not to be idle, not to live off other men's labors, for in that case they are "Christ-peddlers," or perhaps better, "Christ-parasites" (cf. 2 Thess. 3. 10).

13.1-7. We now return to the theme of "prophets," but like the Christian of 12.3, these are prophets who wish to settle. If ch. 12 had not provided such a neat transition, we might have expected this material to follow 11.12 (see §8.4-5). The additional note on [[173]] "teachers" in 13.2 is rather strained and superfluous to the remainder of the chapter, but it does prepare us for 15. 1-2. The "first fruit" section in 13.3-7 sounds like an adapted Jewish halakic tradition based on passages such as Exod. 22.29 f.; Num 18. 12-30; Deut. 18. 1-5 (cf. Neh. 10.35 ff.; Ezek. 44.30). The ancient high priests are replaced by the prophets (do the teachers equal the Levites of old?; cf. 1 Clem. 40.5), and provision for the needy is retained (13.4, cf. Deut. 26. 12). Apparently fixed clergy
(15. 1-2) had not yet replaced the itinerant ministers when this material was incorporated into the developing Didache tradition. The allusions to "the commandment" (13.5, 7) are obscure. Perhaps the Old Testament laws mentioned above are in view, or some saying attributed to Jesus (see Matt. 10.10b, or Irenaeus, Adv. haer. 4.17.5 -- "[the Lord] counseled his disciples to offer first fruits to God ..."!), although in the latter case we might expect reference to the "gospel" (see 8.2; 11.3; 15.3 f.). The inclusion of personal possessions in 13.7 may be based on the "offering" extracted from the Egyptians by the Exodus Israelites (see Exod. 3.22; 12.35; cf. Acts 20.33). The allowance that, within the general obligation to give, the giver has some freedom to determine his exact contribution
(13.7; cf. 6.2 f.!) is similar to Justin's claim in Apology 67.6 (cf. Acts 5.4).

14.1-3. The connection between Did. 14 and its surroundings is not entirely clear, but probably it continues the idea of "first fruit" offerings in 13.3-7 by referring to the Christian "sacrifice" now offered (cf. 1 Clem. 40-41). The description of early Christian worship here is frustratingly vague. More detailed pictures are found in (1) the letter of Pliny to Trajan (see Grant, 88 f.), where a typical Christian service includes predawn meetings on a predetermined day, a hymn, a moral pledge, and later an "ordinary and harmless" meal; and in Justin, Apology 65-67. Christians meet on Sunday, greet each other with a kiss, read scriptures, have prayer and Eucharist conducted by "foremost brethren" with deacons serving absent members, [[174]] contributions for the needy are received, and so forth. Probably the "Lord's (Day) of the Lord," as 14.1 literally reads (cf. Rev. 1.10), refers to regular Sunday meetings (see Barn. 15.8 f.; §2.3), although C. W. Dugmore has argued that only Easter is meant (Supplement to Novum Testamentum, vol. 6 [1962], 282 ff.). The breaking of bread (14.1) has usually been interpreted as a Eucharistic service (so Georg), but the passage is by no means unambiguous and a regular community meal could be in view (see to chs. 9-10; cf. Acts 20.7 and Pliny's description). Nor should we jump to the conclusion that "sacrifice" in 14.1-2 necessarily indicates the Eucharistic "sacrament"--prayers and praise often were called "sacrifices" in this period, both in Judaism and in Christianity (see Barn. 2. 10; Justin, Dial. 117.2b, etc.). Mal. 1. 11 f. (14.3) was widely used in the early Church (in various forms) to "prove" God's acceptance of Christian prayers and/or Eucharistic observances throughout the world, and to attack Jewish cultic ritual (cf. Barn. 2-3).

15.1-2. This is one of the most recently composed sections of the Didache (see §8.3-5), reflecting the transition from dependence on itinerant ministers, some of whom have settled (13. 1-2), to indigenous leaders (see §9.3). Notice that there is no indication here of a single bishop leader (cf. Ign. Trall. 2-3, etc.), but of appointing (or choosing, electing; cf. Acts 14.23; 2 Cor. 8.19; later it can mean "ordaining"; §10.6) a group of "overseers" (elders, who probably led community worship) and of deacons (with more menial functions, such as distribution of food,
alms, etc.)--cf. Phil. 1.1; 1 Clem. 42.4 f.; Hermas, Vis. 3.5.1, and so forth. The translation "hold in contempt" (or "upbraid") in 15.2 may be too strong--"disregard" or "ignore" also are possible. [[175]]

15.3-4. This very general treatment of intracommunity relationships twice appeals to "the gospel" teachings, but does not cite any passages (cf. 8.2; 11.3). The best parallels to 15.3 are Matt. 5.22-26; 18.15-17, 21 f. (cf. Sirach 10.6 f.), and to 15.4, Matt. 6.1-18. Probably "the gospel" here does not consciously refer to a written document accessible to all, but to the teachings of Jesus (like 1.3b-4; 8.2) which were regularly repeated in community gatherings. The Greek in 15.3b is cryptic and could mean "nor let him be heard among you." A similar passage about "heterodox" Christians in Ign. Smyrn. 7.2 has "and say nothing, either privately or publicly, about them." Probably 15.3b advocates giving an errant brother "the silent treatment" both privately and publicly. It is not clear whether this exclusion from public teaching/preaching also involves exclusion from meals, Eucharist, and so on.

16.1-8. Certain aspects of this apocalyptic "appendix" have been discussed in §2.3, 7. In general, it is closely related to the "synoptic apocalypse" in Mark 13; Matt. 24-25; Luke 21--see also 1 Thess. 4.13--5. 11; 2 Thess. 2.1-12; 1 Cor. 15.23-28; Jude; 2 Pet. 2-3; Rev. 3-22. Furthermore, the Ethiopic Apocalypse of Peter (M. R. James, 511) opens with a strikingly parallel passage, including references to [[176]] the sign-working "deceiver" (see 16.4), the cross preceding the Lord as he comes (also in the Epistle of the Apostles 16 [or 27; James, 490]; cf. 16.6, the "sign spread out in heaven"!), the regal procession and judgment (16.8). On the imagery of that which is commendable being "corrupted" to its opposite (16.3), cf. 2 Baruch 48.35, "honor will be turned to shame, and strength humiliated to contempt,...and beauty will become ugliness." The "Antichrist" figure in 16.4 is frequent in apocalyptic literature, Jewish and Christian--see Dan. 7.25; 11.36ff.; 2 Thess. 2.8; 1 John 2.18; Rev. 13, and so on. The testing by fire in 16.5 (cf. Zech. 13.9; 1 Pet. 1.7; Rev. 16.8 f.) does not represent the final world conflagration envisioned in some sources (as 2 Pet. 3.10, 12--with a Stoic background), but the climactic crisis for mankind before the triumphal return of "the Lord" (apparently Jesus--see §9.8). Perhaps the allusion to the fiery destruction of the lawless men in Qumran Hymns 6.17 ff. reflects a similar concept (cf. Rev.
20.15). In fact, it may be that 16.5 is intended as a reference to judgment taking place before the Lord's return (but then, what does "the world" mean in 16.8a?), and that the Didache should end as in MS H, without further reference to judgment. The resurrection of 16.6-7, in any case, is only for "the saints," as a reward for endurance and a sign of triumph.