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Re: [Synoptic-L] Source Theories and the HHB Concordance

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  • David Mealand
    One clarification: I agree that there is a genre element in the contrast between the mainly Markan and the mainly Matt//Lk groups, but I don t think it is the
    Message 1 of 17 , Dec 4, 2010
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      One clarification:

      I agree that there is a genre element
      in the contrast between the mainly Markan
      and the mainly Matt//Lk groups, but I don't think
      it is the only thing going on there.

      David M.


      ---------
      David Mealand, University of Edinburgh


      --
      The University of Edinburgh is a charitable body, registered in
      Scotland, with registration number SC005336.
    • gentdave1
      David, My perfered interpretation of my results is that there is a saying source involved in there somewhere as well. So, on that point, we really don t
      Message 2 of 17 , Dec 4, 2010
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        David,

        My perfered interpretation of my results is that there is a saying source involved in there somewhere as well. So, on that point, we really don't differ. And that may well be what your method is highlighting for us.

        I think my analysis presents a problem only for a pure 2SH where Luke makes no use of Matthew at all.

        Dave Gentile
        Riverside, IL
      • grig035
        ... source involved in there somewhere as well. So, on that point, we really don t differ. And that may well be what your method is highlighting for us. ...
        Message 3 of 17 , Dec 23, 2010
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          --- In Synoptic@yahoogroups.com, "gentdave1" <GentDave@...> wrote:
          >
          > David,
          >
          > My perfered interpretation of my results is that there is a saying
          source involved in there somewhere as well. So, on that point, we really
          don't differ. And that may well be what your method is highlighting for
          us.
          >
          > I think my analysis presents a problem only for a pure 2SH where Luke
          makes no use of Matthew at all.
          >
          > Dave Gentile
          > Riverside, IL
          >

          As one who has been a grateful lurker here, and far too busy with the
          holidays to participate as much as I would like, and not as much a
          specialist as many others here, I want to thank those who applied
          themselves to my query during these weeks. Much appreciated.

          Ironically, as one who has generally felt comfortable with the
          mainstream theory positing a "Q" ("quelle") document for the parallel
          sayings in Matt./Luke, I've found that this discussion and Mr. Gentile's
          persuasive stats have made me revisit some of my assumptions. Strictly
          as devil's advocate (so to speak ;-)), instead of my coming at this as
          one persuaded that a "Q" document is behind the parallel tradition, can
          anyone here who is conversant with Mr. Gentile's stats use those stats
          to persuade, for the sake of argument, a hypothetical "Q" skeptic that
          however probable the occasional Luke consultation of Matt. now looks
          with these new stats, there are still remaining indications that some
          ur-document such as "Q" must still be part of the equation.

          If so, please, what are those indications and how are they still
          consistent with Mr. Gentile's findings?

          Again, thanks for the avid discussion.

          Geoffrey Riggs
        • GentDave@att.net
          ...   I think you might get some discussion on this point. Most here, or at least the more vocal people feel Luke used Matthew in some way. Beyond that -
          Message 4 of 17 , Dec 23, 2010
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            > are [there] still remaining indications that some
            > ur-document such as "Q" must still be part of the equation[?]
            >
            > If so, please, what are those indications and how are they still
            > consistent with Mr. Gentile's findings?
            >
            > Again, thanks for the avid discussion.
            >
            > Geoffrey Riggs

             
            I think you might get some discussion on this point. Most here, or at least the more vocal people feel Luke used Matthew in some way. Beyond that - there is not a lot of agreement that I've noticed.
             
            Staying only with the statistical study, there is certainly room for and even hints of a saying source in the results. The problem is that genera could also be an explanation for these results. So the conclusion is that while the study can not demonstrate the need for a saying source, it certainly leaves room for one.
             
            Leaving the study, there are other arguments to make, most of which I'll leave to other people to make if they wish. But my own argument has been from Luke's behavior. Luke follows the wording of the sayings very closely. However, the order he follows not at all. It has been noted by some that the order of "Q" material in Luke and Matthew is correlated. However, if you take out the narrative parts of the hypothetical "Q" (which I suspect have a different history than the sayings), you find that the order of the sayings in Matthew and Luke do not correlate at all. This random scatter might make an argument for an oral source, but then the closeness of the wording might argue otherwise.
             
            If Luke uses Matthew and regards Matthew as a contemporary document, and not a historical one, then I find it odd that Luke quotes Matthew so precisely, as if he were preserving the words Jesus actually spoke. On the other hand, if Luke thought Matthew was an old historical source, then I think the way he rips it apart is odd. I would expect it to be treated more like he treats Mark.
             
            If, however, Luke worked from an un-ordered Matthian-themed list of sayings which he believed to be genuinely historical, then Luke's behavior makes perfect sense. From Luke's point of view, he has words actually spoken by Jesus, and he treats then with respect. On the other hand, as it is just a list with no intrinsic order, he feels free to place them where he wills for literary advantage.
             
            So, for me at least, a saying source is still part of the solution.
             
            Dave Gentile

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • grig035
            ... least the more vocal people feel Luke used Matthew in some way. Beyond that - there is not a lot of agreement that I ve noticed. ... and even hints of a
            Message 5 of 17 , Dec 23, 2010
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              --- In Synoptic@yahoogroups.com, GentDave@... wrote:
              >
              > > are [there] still remaining indications that some
              > > ur-document such as "Q" must still be part of the equation[?]
              > >
              > > If so, please, what are those indications and how are they still
              > > consistent with Mr. Gentile's findings?
              > >
              > > Again, thanks for the avid discussion.
              > >
              > > Geoffrey Riggs
              > >
              >
              > I think you might get some discussion on this point. Most here, or at
              least the more vocal people feel Luke used Matthew in some way. Beyond
              that - there is not a lot of agreement that I've noticed.
              >
              > Staying only with the statistical study, there is certainly room for
              and even hints of a saying source in the results. The problem is that
              genera could also be an explanation for these results. So the conclusion
              is that while the study can not demonstrate the need for a saying
              source, it certainly leaves room for one.
              >
              > Leaving the study, there are other arguments to make, most of which
              I'll leave to other people to make if they wish. But my own argument has
              been from Luke's behavior. Luke follows the wording of the sayings very
              closely. However, the order he follows not at all. It has been noted by
              some that the order of "Q" material in Luke and Matthew is correlated.
              However, if you take out the narrative parts of the hypothetical "Q"
              (which I suspect have a different history than the sayings), you find
              that the order of the sayings in Matthew and Luke do not correlate at
              all. This random scatter might make an argument for an oral source, but
              then the closeness of the wording might argue otherwise.
              >
              > If Luke uses Matthew and regards Matthew as a contemporary document,
              and not a historical one, then I find it odd that Luke quotes Matthew so
              precisely, as if he were preserving the words Jesus actually spoke. On
              the other hand, if Luke thought Matthew was an old historical source,
              then I think the way he rips it apart is odd. I would expect it to be
              treated more like he treats Mark.
              >
              > If, however, Luke worked from an un-ordered Matthian-themed list of
              sayings which he believed to be genuinely historical, then Luke's
              behavior makes perfect sense. From Luke's point of view, he has words
              actually spoken by Jesus, and he treats then with respect. On the other
              hand, as it is just a list with no intrinsic order, he feels free to
              place them where he wills for literary advantage.
              >
              > So, for me at least, a saying source is still part of the solution.
              >
              > Dave Gentile

              Thanks very much. To the board in general as well as to Mr. Gentile: If
              we view Luke's rearrangement of the order of Q material found in Matthew
              as asymptomatic of his characteristic treatment of Mark, then is it
              possible that the simple list of sayings that Luke used -- with all
              their evident statistical resonances with additional non-Q Matthew
              material -- was indeed from a source very similar to Matthew but not
              Matthew itself? In other words, could Q simply be an ur-Matthew that
              antedated our known Matthew and that only consisted of the Q passages?

              Or does that explanation simply overlook too much else that points away
              from such an explanation? Am I also, perhaps, unconsciously allowing
              myself to be swayed by the interpretation sometimes given to Papias's
              remarks that seem to imply to some that Papias only know a Matthew that
              consisted of sayings, period. Yes, I know that not all view "logia" as
              meaning sayings.

              Conversely, are there some here that see Gentile's statistics as bearing
              out entirely the supposition -- which would have been surprising to many
              a generation or so ago -- that lock, stock and barrel of the original Q
              were first set down in Matthew as we know it today after all. And thus
              Luke is working entirely from a source we can readily study today -- the
              known Gospel of Matthew.

              Personally, I still have to wonder -- if that's the case -- how come
              Luke would rearrange Matthew material so much more radically than he
              does Mark material. Or is that a hang-up I can sensibly put aside?

              Thoughts anyone?

              Thanks all,

              Geoffrey Riggs
            • David Inglis
              I spent quite a while using different selections of words: the n most frequent, those only appearing in all HHB categories, those appearing in most
              Message 6 of 17 , Dec 24, 2010
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                I spent quite a while using different selections of words: the 'n' most
                frequent, those only appearing in all HHB categories, those appearing in
                most categories, those with the greatest variation in relative frequency,
                ignoring those with little variation in relative frequency, etc., etc., etc.
                I eventually gave up because there was too much variation in results
                depending on which words were chosen for the analysis. Nevertheless, I would
                say that my results generally support the Mk -> Mt -> Lk trajectory, but
                with 'wrinkles' in other directions that depended on the words I selected.



                From my work on Marcion I've become increasingly convinced that the form of
                Lk that we see (at least, I can't speak for Mk or Mt) was forged over a
                considerable period, during which the order of some passages changed (e.g.
                Nazareth <-> Capernaum), some passages were removed, and others added. So, I
                can see some opportunity for passages in early Lk to have been added to Mt,
                and passages in Mk or Mt to have been added to later Lk. The problem this
                gives anyone using the HHB (or similar) data is that although it's split up
                into categories based on sharing or words or passages across synoptic,
                within each category there are almost certainly words from different periods
                of time, written by different people, that are impossible to detect. As a
                result, different word selections may well change the directionality
                evidence. So, for me, I still believe that this sort of directionality
                evidence is useful, but it is more limited than I once thought. I think it
                best to say that it's just one of many useful indicators, all of which have
                to be taken into account to have a hope of getting the true picture.



                David Inglis

                Lafayette, CA, 94549, USA



                From: Synoptic@yahoogroups.com [mailto:Synoptic@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                Of David Mealand
                Sent: Saturday, December 04, 2010 1:41 AM
                To: Synoptic@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: Re: [Synoptic-L] Re: Source Theories and the HHB Concordance

                Yes I think it would be nice to check for homogeneity
                but it could probably only be done on some of the larger blocks.
                This is partly because I like the reassurance partitioning
                provides, partly I would really like to separate material
                of different genre, but I don't think the HHB data are amenable
                to that. I note though that DG does quite rightly pay attention to
                genre at the interpretative stage.

                I have a slightly different take on the end conclusions
                from using the 50 more frequent words (noting the
                absence of the most frequent from HHB) and using a
                different method to get two dimensional displays
                of the relation between the 19 groups, but I think that
                DG's analysis definitely deserves attention.

                David M.

                ---------
                David Mealand, University of Edinburgh



                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Tony Buglass
                Just back from midnight communion - feeling well-frozen and well-blessed! Happy Christmas to all of you and yours, Blessings, Rev Tony Buglass Superintendent
                Message 7 of 17 , Dec 24, 2010
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                  Just back from midnight communion - feeling well-frozen and well-blessed!

                  Happy Christmas to all of you and yours,
                  Blessings,
                  Rev Tony Buglass
                  Superintendent Minister
                  Calderdale Methodist Circuit

                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Tony Buglass
                  Of course, I intended to change the subject line to Christmas Greetings - I refer you to the comment about being well frozen - the brain stopped working...
                  Message 8 of 17 , Dec 24, 2010
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                    Of course, I intended to change the subject line to "Christmas Greetings" - I refer you to the comment about being "well frozen" - the brain stopped working...

                    Blessings, all!
                    Rev Tony Buglass
                    Superintendent Minister
                    Calderdale Methodist Circuit

                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Maluflen@aol.com
                    DAVE GENTILE: Leaving the study, there are other arguments to make, most of which I ll leave to other people to make if they wish. But my own argument has been
                    Message 9 of 17 , Dec 26, 2010
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                      DAVE GENTILE:
                      Leaving the study, there are other arguments to make, most of which
                      I'll leave to other people to make if they wish. But my own argument
                      has been from Luke's behavior. Luke follows the wording of the sayings
                      very closely. However, the order he follows not at all. It has been
                      noted by some that the order of "Q" material in Luke and Matthew is
                      correlated. However, if you take out the narrative parts of the
                      hypothetical "Q" (which I suspect have a different history than the
                      sayings), you find that the order of the sayings in Matthew and Luke do
                      not correlate at all.

                      LEONARD:
                      This last comment is an overstatement. What you do not find between
                      Matthew and Luke, in terms of the sayings of Jesus they offer, is
                      perfect alignment. On the other hand, there certainly is significant
                      correlation, as well as some non-correlation, between Matthew and Luke
                      in the sayings material as a whole. For instance, if you begin with
                      focusing on the five major discourses in Matthew, Luke generally has
                      material corresponding to these -- in parts of his Gospel that also
                      correspond generally to their sequence in Matthew (sermon on the
                      mount/plain, commissioning of the twelve, eschatological discourse,
                      etc.).

                      DAVE:
                      If Luke uses Matthew and regards Matthew as a contemporary document,
                      and not a historical one, then I find it odd that Luke quotes Matthew
                      so precisely, as if he were preserving the words Jesus actually spoke.
                      On the other hand, if Luke thought Matthew was an old historical
                      source, then I think the way he rips it apart is odd. I would expect it
                      to be treated more like he treats Mark.

                      LEONARD:
                      Responding to the first sentence above, there are any number of reasons
                      why Luke might have thought the sayings of Jesus in Matthew are worth
                      quoting precisely, to the extent that they are indeed so quoted, even
                      if the hypothesis that Luke considered Matthew a “contemporary”, and
                      “not a historical” document were sound. The hypothesis that sayings
                      believed to preserve words that Jesus actually spoke would for that
                      reason be recorded by Luke without alteration also rests on modern (not
                      to say Protestant/fundamentalistic) presuppositions that are probably
                      quite irrelevant to the behavior of the Evangelists. The
                      presuppositions in the final two sentences above are also problematic.
                      The idea that Luke could calmly asses Matthew as a contemporary
                      document that could be treated casually compared to a “historical” Mark
                      that would require more respectful treatment flies in the face of the
                      historical evidence from very soon after the composition of Luke. How
                      could Luke’s audience be expected to concur with this evaluation of
                      Matthew, and yet an ecclesiastical consensus emerges, without
                      challenge, just a few years later, to the effect that Matthew was the
                      first Gospel written? The evidence of strangely different treatment by
                      Luke of Matthew and Mark respectively is most convincingly handled by
                      the assumption that Luke did not know or use Mark, and that the
                      symmetry between Luke-Mark double tradition and Matthew-Mark double
                      tradition results from a single author, Mark, making use of the two
                      traditional gospels, one Jewish-Christian and the other
                      Gentile-Christian, for his own conciliatory, catechetical-liturgical
                      and dramatic purposes.

                      Leonard Maluf
                    • gentdave1
                      ... LEONARD: This last comment is an overstatement. What you do not find between Matthew and Luke, in terms of the sayings of Jesus they offer, is perfect
                      Message 10 of 17 , Dec 27, 2010
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                        > However, if you take out the narrative parts of the
                        > hypothetical "Q" (which I suspect have a different history than the
                        > sayings), you find that the order of the sayings in Matthew and Luke do
                        > not correlate at all.
                        >
                        >

                        LEONARD:
                        This last comment is an overstatement. What you do not find between
                        Matthew and Luke, in terms of the sayings of Jesus they offer, is
                        perfect alignment. On the other hand, there certainly is significant
                        correlation, as well as some non-correlation, between Matthew and Luke in the sayings material as a whole. For instance, if you begin with focusing on the five major discourses in Matthew, Luke generally has material corresponding to these -- in parts of his Gospel that also correspond generally to their sequence in Matthew (sermon on the mount/plain, commissioning of the twelve, eschatological discourse, etc.).

                        Dave: It was a precise statement, indicating something that is mathematically true about the ordering of the non-narrative "Q" sayings. If you simply number the sayings, the order of the sayings do not correlate significantly.

                        Of course it is still possible that what you say is also true. We could achieve a zero total correlation by taking blocks of sayings and moving them around, but still have perfect correlation within the blocks. So this is not really a test for "zero information" in common between the two sets. It might be interesting to test some of these blocks. Does the order of sayings within the blocks correlate? Another test would be to see how often pairs are in the same order, etc...

                        Let's suppose we find a relation (or without bothering to do any math, look at the sermons, for example, and note what seems to be a fair amount of common content. What would this tell us? If Luke was using Matthew then we still have him doing a fairly rigorous job of rearranging the sayings. On the other hand, if they both work from a saying source it tells us that, to some extent at least, sections of the list of sayings seemed to group together in the source. Possibly we could suppose that there was even some sort of sub-list, which constituted a sermon in the source. Although, my speculation would be that this structure is something Luke picked up after contact with Matthew. If Luke-A was re-written to Luke-B after Matthew as Bruce suggests, then my guess would be that the sermon is added to Luke at this point, and that Luke borrows some things that might previously have been elsewhere in his text and adds them here.

                        Outside of the sermons, what commonalities in ordering do you perceive?

                        LEONARD:
                        The hypothesis that sayings
                        believed to preserve words that Jesus actually spoke would for that
                        reason be recorded by Luke without alteration also rests on modern (not
                        to say Protestant/fundamen talistic) presuppositions that are probably
                        quite irrelevant to the behavior of the Evangelists.

                        Dave: I'm relying more on Luke's opening, when he tells us he wants to go back to the beginning. I think he does have respect for what he regards as historical facts. He is certainly not above inventing things to suit his literary and Theological needs, but he may feel somewhat constrained to present as history, what he (and probably much of his audience) regard as established history.

                        LEONARD:
                        How could Luke's audience be expected to concur with this evaluation of Matthew, and yet an ecclesiastical consensus emerges, without
                        challenge, just a few years later, to the effect that Matthew was the
                        first Gospel written?

                        Dave: My thesis is this:

                        A list of saying appears on the scene, say around 80 AD for example, it is in Aramaic and Greek "translation" (although it may be in large part back translation) which claims to be words spoken by Jesus as remembered by "Matthew" and written down by him at the time, in Aramaic. From this list, and from Mark, the gospel of Matthew is composed around the year 80.

                        Luke knows the gospel of Matthew is contemporary, and is convinced (incorrectly I believe) that the saying list is authentic. His behavior of quoting the sayings, while paying relatively little attention to the rest of Matthew then seems very intelligible.

                        The later ecclesiastical consensus is then explicable too. Matthew's gospel is regarded as the most authoritative, relying on both the supposed first written source, and Mark (which it "corrects"). A short hand of this gets passed down as "Matthew wrote first".

                        LEONARD:

                        The evidence of strangely different treatment by
                        Luke of Matthew and Mark respectively is most convincingly handled by
                        the assumption that Luke did not know or use Mark, and that the
                        symmetry between Luke-Mark double tradition and Matthew-Mark double
                        tradition results from a single author, Mark, making use of the two
                        traditional gospels, one Jewish-Christian and the other
                        Gentile-Christian, for his own conciliatory, catechetical- liturgical
                        and dramatic purposes.

                        Dave: The statistical study is nearly proof that this did not happen.

                        Dave Gentile
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