I have been looking at the information on the web about the Hellenization of the Jews about the time of Y’shua’s ministry. The argument coming from this is that there may have been no Aramaic manuscripts because the Jews were at that time so Hellenized as to make them unnecessary. I don’t really buy this argument, since the language of the Greeks is so different from the sister languages of Aramaic and Hebrew. There were, according to tradition, at least 10 close to Y’shua whose first languages would have been Hebrew, and the lingua franca of the time, Aramaic. Since there is no argument that Y’shua most likely spoke in Aramaic when addressing his Jewish followers, their first notes would have been in Aramaic, even if they later translated them to Greek to encompass a wider audience.
Since the original disciples cum apostles did not travel, or try to spread the “Good News” beyond the borders of their own land, the argument only makes it probable that the gospels of Luke and Paul (Romans) would have been in Greek or Latin, considering their audiences. Matthew, Mark and John were Jewish, and would have addressed their notes and works to Jewish audiences. There were other gospels, written by others who followed the ministry of Y’shua, these are no longer in existence anywhere, since the needs of Constantine and the bishops at Nicaea were to homogenize the message to create a consistent view of Y’shua that met Constantine’s purpose.
Since the Jewish apostles continued their worship of God in their parent faith, Judaism, I fully suspect that Y’shua never said he was the “I AM”, but spoke of the “I AM” as being the force that brought salvation into the hearts of those who chose to follow that path. If he had claimed Godhood in any way, his followers would have been confused, and would have had to choose between following him or leaving their home faith. This would have left no discord between them and Paul, who, coming late on the scene, and being fully Hellenized, saw no problem with the idea of Y’shua God. In fact, in the book of the Acts of the Apostles, Paul is said to have climbed atop a monument in honor of the unknown God and claimed that this was Jesus the Christ. This makes Y’shua’s message a strictly secondary issue, and his sacrifice on the cross the only thing that matters.
Obviously, I have difficulty with this. It is the reason that folks to this day feel that they can judge and even hate those who do not do things according to their lights. That wasn’t his message. There was no place in Y’shua’s teaching for things like the inquisition, there was no place in Y’shua’s teachings for Manifest Destiny, there was no place in Y’shua’s teachings for the Crusades. These occured because of Man’s inhumanity to man, and because humans tend to feel that they can ride rough shod over others for something as ethereal as a belief.
As long as you believe your “rules” give you the right to interfere with other’s lives, your beliefs are wrong. If you cannot be bothered to learn the Master’s teachings and apply them to your life, do NOT call yourself one of his. He said that his students would be known by their love. That message gets lost when you make Y’shua’s teachings secondary to anything else that happened in his life. As a voicehearer, I cannot afford that sort of foolishness, truth is, neither can humankind. The Hellenization of the Rabbi’s teachings made it possible to think that his followers could call themselves emissaries of God, and, somehow, no matter what, be doing God’s Will. It created two religions in one, the gentle Rabbi’s path, and a path that destroys other humans as though they were so much dust. Read his words carefully, you will not find sanction to do that sort of thing there.
Edit: BTW, Hanukkah celebrates the driving out of the Greek influences some 2100 years ago, and the rededication of the Temple from the pagan influences of the Greek culture, so rather than accepting the gospels in Greek, the Jews would have rejected them and Paul’s version of the gospel without a moment’s hesitation.