This thread previously entitled: Jews in Acts, has moved to new ground.
>What Neusner work is this from?<
The Mishnah: A New Translation, Yale UP 1988 pp 252: Sheqalim
>mishnaic tradition is terribly difficult to date<
Right; but the description clearly relates to second temple era.
Archaeological evidence that suggests trading took place outside sacred
precincts can complement, rather than contradict, the testimony of m.Sheq.
Trading in animals and produce for sacrifice was required year round. The
heavier demands of festival crowds, and the additional transactions
associated with gathering temple tax and pledges, called for extraordinary
facilities. The description of tables being set up in the provinces and
subsequently in the temple not only supports the gospels' witness that they
were there for Jesus to topple, but also implies that they were not there
at all times.
I pick up mixed messages regarding the Tyrian shekel. It was obligatory for
the temple tax, but was it required for other transactions?
[John E Staton]
>Not sure I buy in to your heavily political reading of Luke here<
Understood; and I do acknowledge having a bee in my bonnet about tax these
days - probably a reaction to a recent RCA audit. Nevertheless, Matthew
does introduce the gospel with a decree by Augustus preparatory to taxing
the world; tax collectors pop up frequently in the synoptics as
controversial figures; there is a plethora of radical teaching relating to
poverty and the redistribution of wealth; mammon is set in opposition to
the KofG; and the litmus test for the rich becoming disciples has nought to
do with spiritual exercises or doctrinal correctness, but willingness to
prime the economic revolution. Luke brings this socio-economic theme to
culmination with an execution for alleged tax rebellion alongside convicted
insurrectionists. He is not entirely alone in this.
On the other hand, people have worked long and hard at suppressing the
political message in favour of more ethereal themes, with astonishing
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