In this book "community-sayings" often become a transparent veil. Bultmann will point out how characteristic they are, and that they could never have been formed if Jesus had not taught this or that. The procedure of the community, he argues, "is the best witness for the teaching of Jesus" (J. 72). The certainty with which the community put the eschatological message into His lips is hard to understand if He did not actually proclaim it, and one cannot doubt that the most important words which demand complete obedience to God's will go back to Him.The book did us the service of showing what ought perhaps not to have been doubted, that a "community-saying" is not an invention ex nihilo, but a construction which could not have existed apart from the movement created by Jesus Himself. (Taylor 1933:14–15)
To many of us, the idea of Jesus' followers creating any saying of Jesus will be inappropriate. But scholars have recently come to appreciate that even verbatim reproduction of another person's words is to (re)create them as our own (not unlike how I have recreated Taylor's words in this post, and Taylor himself recreated Bultmann's words). (Re)Creation is not necessarily falsification. Matthew may have said, "Blessed are the poor in spirit," but he did so as a representative of the Jesus tradition and to the community of Jesus' followers. Apparently, Matthew expected his audience to accept that his words were also Jesus' words. Taylor's explanation of Bultmann's work clearly communicates this idea.