Loren Rosson III says:
>>Bauckham's article indeed undercuts the form critical assumption that most
eyewitness-origins were lost under the anonymity of collective transmission.
That Papias, for instance, valued and expected to hear what actual disciples
had said (like Andrew and Peter) and were still saying (like Aristion and
John the Elder) indicates that oral traditions didn't necessarily evolve
away from eyewitnesses but continued to be attached to them. So we can
perhaps be stronger than speaking simply of the "voice" of oral tradition.
We can speak of the voices of actual informants who had and have memories of
the sayings and deeds of Jesus.<<
Why could not Papias' interest in finding the oldest oral witnesses have
been due to a distrust of, or dissatisfaction with, oral or written
traditions as they existed more than a generation or two from the
"eyewitnesses?" Seems he wanted to set the record straight rather than
In any event, later generations (particularly Eusebius) had none too high
opinion of what he related: particularly the saying of Jesus that predicts a
bountiful earthly kingdom (a tradition shared by _2 Baruch_).
As an interesting side issue to this, the other day I received an e-mail
from the IOUDAIOS list from Jim Davila with a link to an abstract of a new
book by Rivka Nir, _The Destruction of Jerusalem and the Idea of Redemption
in the Syriac Apocalypse of Baruch_ (Early Judaism and Its Literature #20,
SBL and Brill: 2003) ISBN #1589830504, which proposes that 2 Baruch may
represent the point of view of earliest Christianity.
Cleveland, Ohio, USA