The Teaching Styles of the Apology of Plato an the Gospel of Luke Essay

The Teaching Styles of the Apology of Plato an the Gospel of Luke Essay

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Socrates and Luke are both considered to be great educators. They have both influenced countless people with their teachings. However, comparing the two is slightly strange since Socrates is the subject of the story, which is told by Plato, and Luke is the teller of the story of Jesus. A comparison can be made between the two as Socrates is a great teacher while Plato is mostly silent and Luke, while not overly prevalent in the his story can be compared to other accounts of the story of Jesus among which his by far the most didactic. But when you are comparing the two you must keep in mind that you are in actuality comparing four and also that while the story teller is supposed to only be telling you what he saw, he is also telling his personal vision of what he saw. Therefore he has a personal bias, which affects the purpose behind his style.
     A strong parallel exists between the two storytellers Plato and Luke in that they are both biased to a great degree. While they both teach a wonderful perspective they teach solely their perspective with no room for any other. Luke asserts that when Jesus died “the sun’s light failed; and the curtain of the temple was torn in two,” (Luke 23:44) thus giving divine testimony that Jesus is indeed the son of the Almighty. Whenever Jesus is questioned the people who do so are inevitably wrong, there points being made to look stupid as Jesus transcends the question with a new concept. For example, in Luke 20:34-40 Jesus is asked about a wife who has been widowed and remarried several times and to who she should be married in heaven. This is a difficult question in Jewish tradition where the concept of the resurrection is that of a physical rebirth and the continuation of life on earth. However, Jesus comes up with an new and controversial idea of an immortal soul. He uses the rational that since God only spoke to the living in the Torah, he only deals with the living; so since God still represents you after death, you must still be alive after you die. This is a questionable argument at best however the obvious leaps of logic here are never examined because the questioning scribes “no longer dared to ask him another question.” (Luke 20:40) This obviously must be because Jesus is the Son of God who speaks with divine and unquestionable authority, or so Luke seems to imply. In much the same way,...


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...awesome strength and believability. So while martyrdom may not actually say anything about the truth of what they say, it is very still very convincing.
      Overall, it is probably better to look at the teaching styles of Socrates/Plato and Jesus/Luke as being less instructional and more as a form of propaganda. The ways ideas are presented in both the accounts seem to be meant to convince the reader of a particular viewpoint rather than enlighten him. Biased accounts in both cases use manipulative and emotional methods such as leading and fantastic situations to influence the reader. This is not surprising since both accounts are apologies or defenses of a particular view. The goal is therefore not to educate but to persuade the reader to agree with the beliefs of the author. This is of course not to say that there is nothing of educational value in either of these accounts. Both contain monumentally important ethical principals such as wisdom comes from realizing that you are not wise, and love your neighbor as yourself. However, the actual teaching style that is used by both Plato and Luke is one that has a purpose beyond the reader’s own education.

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