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RE: [Synoptic-L] Theory Types

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  • Matson, Mark (Academic)
    One can t exemplify this specifically, Chuck. It has to work back to the solution to the synoptic problem. Hence each of the solutions to the problem could
    Message 1 of 55 , Feb 5, 2009
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      One can't exemplify this specifically, Chuck. It has to work back to the solution to the synoptic problem. Hence each of the solutions to the problem could theoretically be right on an individual basis; the solution would need to be developed on a more macro scale while taking into account specifics.

      But you asked for an example. In Mk 5:21-43, the healing of Jairus' daughter (and parallels, Mt. 9:18-26 and Lk 8:40-56). Simply on the face of it, it could be possible that Mt was first, or Luke first, or Mark first. Whichever was first, that author was either relying on oral material or some written notes (or a lost document) or creating the document de novo. Now the answers to each of these questions is contingent on other issues.

      For my part, my conclusion on Markan priority is based on a number of issues, not least of which is Mark as a middle term in comparison both at a gospel wide level (order and structure of common events) and at a pericope level. This is an ongoing discussion, as a friendly rejoinder by Leonard Maluf might well suggest (are you listening Leonard?). For me, I have concluded (only after much struggling) that Mark is prior. If so, then one must ask where did Mark get his material? I (contra Bruce Brooks in his ongoing discussion) don't find it convincing that we have examples of interpolation of sources, but rather a relatively common style that I attribute to one author -- Mark. But where did he get this? Did he make it up? Well, it would seem reasonable that there was lots of material sympathetic to Mark's story about Jesus (hence additional stuff in Matt and Luke, and summaries in Paul). So I don't see this as creative fiction. Instead it seems to be common material -- oral. And much may be based on eyewitness testimony (I actually think much of Bauckham's argument on eyewitness testimony rings true). Do I know this for sure? No. But I don't see strong evidence that counters this, and this is the most convincing case I have found.

      Then, if we have Mark as prior, we move to others.

      I do think once you make a case for Markan priority the other relationships get easier, and redaction analysis becomes possible.

      But you suggest somehow there is a clear analysis possible of a parallel passage. I don't know how to do that. I think one must deal with the most compelling evidence, and move from most likely to less likely. And always imagine a whole complex solution. That is one reason why I resist Bruce's attempt to too easily locate "part of the problem" aside from the whole. One must always be prepared to argue from the whole to the part as well, and the most likely solution works both ways.

      But there are a host of assumptions all along the way.

      Not sure that answers your questions, though.

      Mark A. Matson
      Academic Dean
      Milligan College

      > -----Original Message-----
      > From: Synoptic@yahoogroups.com [mailto:Synoptic@yahoogroups.com] On
      > Behalf Of Chuck Jones
      > Sent: Thursday, February 05, 2009 12:45 PM

      > Mark,
      > I wonder if  you could give me an example of a passage that appears in
      > the triple tradition in which the Markan version demonstrates an oral
      > source when compared to Mt and Lk.
      > Likewise, a passage each from Mt and Lk that show evidence of being
      > based on an oral rather than written source.  Seeing your analysis that
      > led to these selections would be very helpful to me, I  think.
      > Thanks,
      > Rev. Chuck Jones
      > Atlanta, Georgia
      > Actually, Chuck, my argument was not that Mark has no sources. (though
      > I don't think he had written sources because I think Mark is an
      > original composition) . Rather, my argument with you was primarily with
      > your rationale, your argumentation. I did not find your reasons
      > convincing.
      > With those of the Griesbach hypothesis, my engagement turns in a very
      > different way. While we disagree (as with my discussions with David
      > Dungan, for instance), the basis for our disagreement was very clear.
      > To be specific about what I think (and we could use that as a basis for
      > discussion):
      > 1. It think Mark is an original composition based on oral sources, some
      > of which may have been eyewitness accounts.
      > 2. I think Matthew used Mark, supplemented by oral sources. Maybe a
      > written source, but if so that is unrecoverable.
      > 3. I think Luke used Mark and Matthew, supplemented by oral sources.
      > And may have known and engaged John.
      > To my mind (and Stephanie Fischer this may be directed to you as well),
      > Farrer theorists do not usually dispute significant additional sources
      > (e.g. oral traditions). And do not rule out-of-hand written sources.
      > But there is a tendency to not rely on sources that are speculative,
      > and especially reject a common written source that both Luke and
      > Matthew used, since the basis for that is tenuous.
      > And as Ed Sanders pointed out many years ago, the real situation is
      > indeed probably very complex, and involves re-oralization, developing
      > readings and liturgy in churches, etc. But that shouldn't stop us from
      > trying to figure it out.
    • Chuck Jones
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      Message 55 of 55 , Feb 11, 2009
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