Dating the didache
380) list the Didache among Deuterocanonical books.
(Rufinus gives the curious alternative title Judicium Petri, "Judgment of Peter".) It is rejected by Nicephorus (c.
The Didache is mentioned by the early church historian Eusebius (c.
324) as the Teachings of the Apostles following the books recognized as canonical (Historia Ecclesiastica III, 25): "Let there be placed among the spurious works the Acts of Paul, the Shepherd of Hermas and the Apocalypse of Peter, and besides these the Epistle of Barnabas, and what are called the Teachings of the Apostles, and also the Apocalypse of John, if this be thought proper; for as I wrote before, some reject it, and others place it in the canon." Athanasius (367) and Rufinus (c.
While the manuscript is commonly referred to as the Didache, this is short for the header found on the document and the title used by the Church Fathers, "The Teaching of the Twelve Apostles" ( The most acceptable theory among the many proposed on the character and composition of the Didache is that proposed by Charles Taylor in 1886, and accepted in 1895 by A.
Harnack (who in 1884 had most vigorously maintained its Christian origin)—that the first part of the Didache, the teaching concerning the Two Ways (Didache, ch.
Throughout the Two Ways, there are many Old Testament quotes shared with the Gospels and many theological similarities, but Jesus is never mentioned by name.In its present form it represents the Christianization of a common Jewish form of moral instruction.Similar material is found in a number of other Christian writings from the first through about the fifth centuries, including the Epistle of Barnabas, the Didascalia, the Apostolic Church Ordinances, the Summary of Doctrine, the Apostolic Constitutions, the Life of Schnudi, and On the Teaching of the Apostles (or Doctrina), some of which are dependent on the Didache.The first chapter opens with the Shema and the Golden Rule in the negative form (also found in the "Western" version of Acts of the Apostles at and 29 as part of the Apostolic Decree).Then comes short extracts in common with the Sermon on the Mount, together with a curious passage on giving and receiving, which is also cited with variations in Shepherd of Hermas (Mand., ii, 4-6).