[Synoptic-L] Re: Mk 7:32-37 - The Deaf Man (Pericopes)
- Mark, thank for the reply.
Mark: And if you had multiple authors, there might be traces of style issues... though if the sample is small, one could hardly test it.
Dave: My vocabulary study says that the great omission has a vocabulary profile related to the rest of Mark. Although here since at least one of the pericopes (4000) is a near duplicate, we might regard that result as somewhat suspect. But overall, things seem to stay fairly consistent, style-wise, as others have observed. On the other hand Bruce has identified some small features that do seem to vary by layer. And given that these features are not used to arrive at the layer in the first place, these do lend confidence to the idea that the layer is real. To me, minor markers like this would be consistent with one author over time. He might change a little, but not a lot.
Mark: as a side point -- how would we know if there had been deletions?
Dave: We wouldn't really, I suppose. And I suspect at least one small one. (Although this is better explained as an omission caused by later textual transmission). However, I think we have reason to believe that omissions are rare or non-existent. One reason is that the author does not seem to remove old stuff, even if to some extent is message has changed. If he does this in at least some places we might infer (with caution) that he did it everywhere. Also, no deletions is more consistent with us not having earlier versions of the text. If new versions left out old stuff, then we'd be more likely to still have those old versions.
Mark: As you surmised, I don't agree (or disagree). I tend to think that the case for insertions without a comparison text (eg., comparing Matthew, Mark, Luke) is difficult to make. I think often too much is made for what seems to us as difficulties in the text again, assuming insertions in the text.
Dave: Well, I think at least a couple of insertions are documented for us by Luke. I think these cases for insertion in Mark are very strong. Then, given that at least some insertions are documented, and the text certainly appears to have many more, we have good reason to believe these other apparent insertions are real as well.
However, while I think we can be confident that insertions happened, after that I think things get tricky. Is every possible insertion real? And while we can see there are layers, how confident can we be about grouping things together into a layer? I suspect results of this natural will probably have to be tentative. But Bruce is still working, so I'll wait for the final results on that point.