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RE: [Synoptic-L] Drury on the lost sheep and the lost coin

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  • E Bruce Brooks
    To: Synoptic (CC: GPG) On: Three Parables in Lk 15 These have come up recently via Drury s comment, he being an enthusiast of the Goulder analysis, and for
    Message 1 of 14 , Jun 23, 2011
      To: Synoptic (CC: GPG)
      On: Three Parables in Lk 15

      These have come up recently via Drury's comment, he being an enthusiast of
      the Goulder analysis, and for that matter, interesting in his own right. I
      have been recently pursuing another tack: that the material common to Mt and
      Lk is not unidirectional (as MG asserts at some length), but bidirectional,
      but that this does not imply an outside source, since in this scenario Lk
      exists in at least two forms, one pre-Matthean and seen by Mt (Lk A), and
      the other post-Matthean and reacting to Mt (Lk B). I have recently argued
      for the Sermon on the Plain part of this thesis at SBL/NE; see at:

      http://www.umass.edu/wsp/biblica/current/sbl.html

      The other big stretch which such a proposal has to handle satisfactorily is
      the Lukan Travel Narrative (this was already obvious in the discussion
      following my SBL 2006 talk on Luke), and the Lk 15 question, which pops up
      in the midst of that narrative, gives a chance to consider that material
      also. I am here accepting that chance. Klyne Snodgrass, whose helpful book
      on the Parables I continue to appreciate, and who has a good chapter on the
      structure of Lk 15, has said of these three Lostness parables, "What is
      demonstrable is how this section of Luke achieves its rhetorical effect. At
      least ch15, if not the whole of 14:1-=17:10, is focused on the gospel of the
      outcasts. This chapter is the heart of Luke's travel narrative, in which he
      presents the bulk of Jesus's teaching, and for that matter, the heart of his
      whole Gospel" (p94). I think that is essentially correct. Notice the
      startling assumption that Luke in fact HAS a Gospel; that is already a major
      discovery. Going a bit further, I think it can be shown that much of this
      material is consonant with the Gospel of the Poor (that is, the
      proto-Ebionite) Gospel which I have proposed that Luke is expounding in the
      Sermon on the Plain, and though it may not be the only heart of Luke A, it
      is at any rate a fitting companion to the heart that beats in the Sermon. We
      will see some specific echoes as we go along.

      Herewith the exposition. I take things as briefly as possible, in their
      Lukan order.

      Lk 14:1-6 Healing on the Sabbath, at the house of a Pharisee. Makes the
      standard Jesus argument (see Mk) that mercy is in keeping with the Sabbath.
      Derived from the original Jesus teaching, and part of Lk A. Not copied into
      Mt. Serves as a sort of preface to the next, and more original piece:

      Lk 14:7-14, On Humility. Take the lower place. This too is a Jesus doctrine
      (see again Mk), but developed characteristically by Lk. As so developed, it
      not only preaches humility, it specifically preaches the strange doctrine of
      the Lukan Sermon, namely that only unrequited good accumulates a positive
      credit balance in Heaven. The giveaway is in the final line: "But when you
      give a feast, invite the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind, and you will
      be blessed, *because they cannot repay you. You will be repaid at the
      resurrection of the just.* A very clear statement of things that are more
      implicit, indeed gnomic, in the Lukan Sermon. Luke A. Not in Mt, and no
      wonder. He hated the whole theory, as can be seen by his transmogrification
      of the Sermon. With Matthew, money is one of the Good Things.

      Lk 14:15-24. The Great Supper. Those of us who love to make merry with MG at
      the ludicrous mess (MG: "disaster," 2/680) which Luke 19:11-27 has made of
      Matthew's Parable of the Talents (Mt 25:14-30), precisely by introducing an
      unnecessary King into the story; those who pop corn and open beer and invite
      the neighbors in to share the joke, and fully justified they are, should in
      fairness note the equal disaster which Mt has made by introducing a King
      into Lk's story of the Great Supper. MG here (2/588-593) argues for a Mt >
      Lk directionality chiefly from the Lukan quality of the Lukan version, but
      this is equally an argument for adaptation or origination. Beare (Matthew,
      ap Mt 22:1-14, and compare p210f of Beare's very human little Synoptic
      commentary, Earliest Records) says of the Matthean half of this pair, "It
      might be remarked that we can hardly imagine that Luke has found this
      parable in Matthew and has pared it down in this fashion." Goulder (1989)
      might perhaps have done well to take this 1981 opinion (or the 1962 one of
      Earliest Records) into account, but it seems that the Britikers do not waste
      much reading time on the Amerikaners' stuff. Tsk.

      At any rate, for purposes of the present survey, Beare is intuitively right,
      whether in 1962 or in 1981, and directionally, we have Lk > Mt. Given an
      original Lukan position of this story, we also have a very consistent
      thematic sequence in Lk. "Jesus" is still at dinner with the Pharisees, as
      in the preceding two passages, and one of them says, "Blessed is he who
      shall eat bread in the Kingdom of God!" To which Jesus replies with what
      amounts to a rebuke of smug confidence: Those who were originally invited
      (the Jerusalem authorities, those with spiritual custody of Israel) have
      shied away from their real responsibilities, they have not responded to
      God's invitation, and others, the poor and scruffy of this earth, will be
      recruited to replace them. This is exactly the moral of the Parable of the
      Kingdom in Mk; it thus breaks no new doctrinal ground, but rather affirms in
      a new way an old established Jesus tradition doctrine. As Confucius is once
      made to say, one who can warm up the old is fit to be a teacher. On the
      strength of the material in this section, Luke qualifies nicely.

      Lk 14:25-35. He who loves father and mother more than me. Here, though, we
      seem to have a thematic interruption. The inclusion of the poor at the
      Banquet (preceding) leads naturally to Lk 15:1-10 (next paragraph), where
      the sinners are crowding around to hear Jesus, and the Pharisees are
      objecting to this. That is, they are objecting to Jesus living out the
      parable which he has just told them.

      In between, in Lk 14:24-35, comes this bit on discipleship, which just
      because it is a thematic interruption, is probably a later intrusion,
      suggesting Mt > Lk. In rounding off the intrusion, the author of Luke B has
      done his best to restore continuity by tacking on the enigmatic Markan salt
      saying at the end, which at least assumes a modicum of meaning in this new
      context: Salt has first claim on salting things, but if it has lost its
      saltness, it becomes useless. That is: The Temple authorities, surprisingly,
      and through dereliction of their spiritual duty, are not going to be
      included in the Kingdom. Thematically, if no longer situationally, this
      serves to reconnect the intrusive 14:25-35 with what follows. Namely: the
      Lost Sheep.

      Lk 15:1-7. The Lost Sheep. Narratively consecutive in Lk (with Lk 14:15-24,
      not with what immediately precedes), not so much so in Mt (18:12-14). Apart
      from the respective settings, there is little to judge between the two
      stories as far as directionality indicators go. The thematic sequence in Lk
      is sufficiently convincing as an original sequence, though Mt has its own
      connections, via the theme of "little ones." It is characteristic of Mt that
      he talks to disciples (see Paradigm 2/558), whereas Lk, also
      characteristically (allowing for the fact that Lk is not one text but three,
      each with its own character) thinks of repentance (Paradigm 2/615). This is
      a rather useful and nicely observed contrast. There is no strong reason to
      assume Mt > Lk here, and I assume instead Lk > Mt, since it works better
      with what comes next, which is two Lukan expansions of a theme which is
      derived from the same Jesus tradition that Luke everywhere exemplifies.

      Lk 15:8-10. The Lost Coin. An urban counterpart of the preceding, perhaps
      omitted in Mt because it portrays a woman to whom the loss of a modest coin
      is a serious matter. That sort of precarious existence makes Mt
      uncomfortable. In general, in terms of Sitz im Leben, these two Lostness
      parables could have arisen in two ways: (1) to explain and justify Jesus's
      effort to preach to the "lost sheep" of Israel, who as things then stood
      were not scheduled to be saved, or (2) to justify the reception of an erring
      brother (another kind of "lost sheep") back into the community of the saved.
      The erring brother who repents and is forgiven and becomes once again part
      of the fellowship is a problem dealt with throughout the 1c literature, but
      with a difference: in James (early) it is a major virtue to have regained an
      erring brother; by the late 1c (Jude, 2Pt) it is virtually forbidden. This
      reflects the gradual hardening of doctrinal lines, and the sense that those
      who cross back again into the Other Side have committed an irredeemable
      offense. The Domitian persecution of the early 90's probably had something
      to do with that hardening. In any case, that was not the view of Jesus, and
      it was not the view of James, and it is not the view of Luke. The first
      category, option (1), is original Jesus; the second, option (2), probably
      arose in the early church. How then shall we classify these Parables?

      These first two Lostness parables come easily enough under heading (1),
      precisely as Luke tells us in labeling them that way. But then:

      Lk 15:11-22. The Prodigal Son. The previous two little parables focused on
      the joy of the one who recovers the lost, that is, the joy in heaven over
      the accession of the formerly lost sinner. Drury remarks that the theme of
      repentance does not fit these stories very well, and he is right, meaning
      that repentance is not the theme of these stories. They are not told from
      the point of view of the one turning to God, but from the point of view of
      God. The gladness of God, and in the background, the salvation of all, not
      just part, of Israel, is the theme of these stories, or at any rate its
      ancestor. With the Prodigal Son, we are instead given a long and close look
      at the resentment of the previously saved, at having this skunk and wastrel
      reintroduced, and with fanfare and feasting, into the family circle. The
      father explains. He explains by reassuring the good son that his position,
      and indeed his possession, is not threatened. It seems to me that Luke is
      here extending the lostness theme into category (2). In so doing, he is
      going a step beyond James (who ended by praising the one who recoverts the
      erring brother) and asking, in a practical way, will that erring brother
      really be welcome in his former community? I think that the third of these
      Lostness parables, which goes far beyond the previous two, is Luke's answer
      to this cognate question. In any case, there is no question that he got it
      from Mt (who would have been disgusted by the whole idea of wasting capital,
      and living in poverty, and worst of all, of being rewarded for living in
      poverty). So the current hypothesis seems to be holding.

      6:1-13. The Unjust Steward. Moving right along, we come to this Parable,
      also unique to Lk and thus not copied from Mt; our only question is whether
      it is Lk A or Lk B. The last lines of Luke's parables are often helpful,
      since Luke tends to tell us what he means, and this parable closes with the
      thought that God and Wealth are incompatible. This is again Luke's radical
      poverty ethic, most egregiously worked out in the Lazarus parable, but
      sufficiently visible here also (sufficiently, that is, for those who know
      the Chinese prototype of this parable, and are not distracted by the seeming
      anomaly of "Jesus" praising what seems to be dishonest bookkeeping. "Jesus"
      in the story sufficiently deals with this: we should make our choices,
      either for this world or the next, with as much savvy as the steward showed.
      Like him, we cannot keep our present situation, we can only store up credits
      for the next situation. All quite in keeping with the bookkeeping of the
      Lukan Sermon, whose strangeness I tried to expound in the recent and
      abovementioned talk. Luke A.

      Lk 16:14-15. The Pharisees' Love of Money. This is a tag ending of the
      preceding, and reinforces the above interpretation, as well as bringing in
      the related theme of the exalted vs the humble, and the reversal to be
      expected in the transition to the next world. Luke A.

      Lk 16:16-18. John and Divorce, or so my Synopsis says, in trying to make
      sense of a seemingly mixed bag of three brief things. The emphasis on
      strictness about divorce in the third saying (16:18) goes well enough with
      John in the first (16:16), since it will be remembered (or would have been
      remembered by Luke's audience) that John's uncompromising but impolitic
      strictness about divorce had gotten him killed. Just why Luke put these
      things together at just this point I can't at this moment suggest (can
      anybody?), but they were in Luke A, as can be seen by the fact that Mt
      borrowed two of them to stick in at different places in his gaudy remake of
      Luke's Sermon on the Plain. The third of them he put in a different
      location.

      Lk 16:19-31. Dives and Lazarus. This is the quintessential Luke A parable,
      the one in which the absolute virtue of poverty and the absolute vice of
      wealth is most clearly set forth. Luke A. Except, of course, that the final
      paragraph (16:27-31), the second request of Dives, is a Luke C addition,
      designed to reinforce the theme that the Jews (not the rich; the point of
      the parable has here changed) have refused to repent, "even though one come
      to them risen from the dead."

      I will stop here. I suggest that the hypothesis of Luke A, a primitive
      Christian centered text expounding a curious doctrine derived from Jesus'
      teaching in Mark, modified by post-Jesus teaching in James, and going a step
      beyond James in the theology of poverty, has not been refuted, and that
      where the thematic texture of Luke A seems to have been interrupted, there
      are reasons to think that we have an interference either from Matthew
      (reflected in Luke B) or from the later complete severance of Jews and
      Christians (reflected in Acts II and its correlate, Luke C). With the
      exception of these two instances of later interference, the material here
      considered seems to be a long stretch of original Luke teaching, consonant
      with and further illustrating the points more briefly made in the Sermon on
      the Plain.

      Respectfully submitted,

      E Bruce Brooks / University of Massachusetts at Amherst
    • Ken Olson
      E. Bruce Brooks wrote: for purposes of the present survey, Beare is intuitively right Bruce, The purposes of your survey are unknown to me, but I think
      Message 2 of 14 , Jun 23, 2011
        E. Bruce Brooks wrote: "for
        purposes of the present survey, Beare is intuitively right"

        Bruce,

        The purposes of your survey are unknown to me, but I think Beare's intuition is based on an oversimplification of the evidence that needs to be considered. Perhaps Beare (1981) ought to have taken Goulder (1974:415-418) into account, and so should you, along with Drury (1989:97-100). Beare compares only Matthew and Luke's versions of the Great Supper; he does not consider the parallels between Matthew's Great Supper and the Wicked Tenants which immediately precedes it in Matthew's text. If we are to match intuitions, mine tell me the incongruities in Matthew's Great Supper are far more explicable on the hypothesis that Matthew is recasting the Wicked Tenants alone than that he saw the Great Dinner in something close to Luke's form and order and decided to embroider it with material from and place it after his own Wicked Tenants. In effect, Matthew's Supper is the middle term between Wicked Tenants and Luke's Supper. I find it more plausible to think that Luke noticed the incongruity of killing servants and wiping out a city over a dinner invitation and so rewrote the story extensively than that Matthew saw something like Luke's version of Great Supper and saw it as the vehicle with which to explicate the destruction of Jerusalem suggested by the Wicked Tenants. In any event, I don't think any treatment of Goulder's views on the directionality of the Great Supper that fails to take his views on the Wicked Tenants into account can be convincing.

        Best wishes,

        Ken

        Ken Olson
        PhD Cand.
        Duke University
        .



































        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • E Bruce Brooks
        To: Synoptic (Ken Olson) / Cc: GPG Ken: The purposes of your survey are unknown to me, Bruce: I thought it was clearly stated, but I can repeat it. I am
        Message 3 of 14 , Jun 23, 2011
          To: Synoptic (Ken Olson) / Cc: GPG

          Ken: The purposes of your survey are unknown to me,

          Bruce: I thought it was clearly stated, but I can repeat it. I am
          experimenting with a hypothesis: that there are two relevant states of Luke:
          One (Luke A) prior to Matthew and a source for Matthew, thus accounting for
          the Lk > Mt directionalities within the socalled Double Tradition material,
          and Another (Luke B) posterior to and drawing on Matthew, thus accounting
          for the Mt > Lk directionalities in the same material. Is there any reason,
          apart from the present instances, to posit such a situation? Yes, several.
          For instance: Not usually included in "Double Tradition" list are the
          respective Birth stories, but I submit that it is intuitively obvious that
          (a) the Lk one is a gaudy rewrite and remake of the Mt one, and that (b) it
          overrides what looks an awful lot like the original beginning of Lk at Lk
          3:1, with its elaborate opening scene-setting synchronism. So also with the
          respective Jesus genealogies; the Lukan one is a universalist expansion of
          the narrowly Abrahamic Matthean one. Here, then, is one large chunk of
          probable Mt > Lk material, completely apart from the stories here being
          discussed. But notice that it requires the assumption of a prior Luke
          (beginning at Lk 3:1), to which the Matthew rewrites were added at some
          later time; that is, it requires two compositional states of Luke. The
          purpose of the experiment is to see if this Luke A/B hypothesis holds on,
          and can explain, material other than that on which it was founded. Another
          such foundation text is the Lukan Sermon, and I believe I provided the
          complete text and handout of my paper on the Lukan Sermon, though perhaps
          that link did not come across on all browsers. That, anyway, is the context.

          Ken: . . .but I think Beare's intuition is based on an oversimplification of
          the evidence that needs to be considered. Perhaps Beare (1981) ought to
          have taken Goulder (1974:415-418) into account, and so should you, along
          with Drury (1989:97-100). Beare compares only Matthew and Luke's versions of
          the Great Supper; he does not consider the parallels between Matthew's Great
          Supper and the Wicked Tenants which immediately precedes it in Matthew's
          text. If we are to match intuitions, mine tell me the incongruities in
          Matthew's Great Supper are far more explicable on the hypothesis that
          Matthew is recasting the Wicked Tenants alone than that he saw the Great
          Dinner in something close to Luke's form and order and decided to embroider
          it with material from and place it after his own Wicked Tenants.

          Bruce: Well said, up to a point. It is very likely that Matthew, in doing
          his version of the Dinner story keeps in mind what he has been doing
          immediately preceding. Luke too (as I mentioned very briefly at a few points
          in my previous exposition) is also not writing his stories in a personal
          vacuum; rather, he is aware of what he has done, and taught, elsewhere in
          his work, including in the immediately preceding passage. Good. But notice
          that it is still agreed that Matthew's Dinner is NOT A PRIMARY STORY:
          Matthew got it from somewhere, and from somewhere simpler (as Ken says, " he
          saw the Great Dinner in something close to Luke's form"), and to that
          simpler story, he then added his own (thematically characteristic but
          narratively disastrous) royal element. The question which we now have to
          decide is, where did Matthew get the basic Dinner story? An outside source
          which was very like Luke ("something close to Luke's form," as Ken puts it),
          or Luke himself? I am exploring the latter possibility, and so far, it seems
          to be working; at any rate, there is nothing so far which seems to refute
          it. The key agreement is that Matthew's story is based on something like
          Luke's story.

          Ken: In effect, Matthew's Supper is the middle term between Wicked Tenants
          and Luke's Supper.

          Bruce: I don't find "middle term" to be a helpful label. And why not?
          Because it can easily mean different things. It can mean "common ground, and
          thus probable common (C) source, of B and D," thus implying C > B, D. But it
          can just as easily mean "intermediate between B and D," which would imply
          the quite different sequence B > C > D. These two possibilities are highly
          inequivalent, and it is analytically awkward to have the same name for them.

          Ken: I find it more plausible to think that Luke noticed the incongruity of
          killing servants and wiping out a city over a dinner invitation and so
          rewrote the story extensively than that Matthew saw something like Luke's
          version of Great Supper and saw it as the vehicle with which to explicate
          the destruction of Jerusalem suggested by the Wicked Tenants.

          Bruce: The Luke scenario here does not convince. As between the two Dinner
          Stories, the Lukan one is simple and not contorted, and the Matthean one is
          complex and contorted. We agree that the Matthean story could not plausibly
          have been written de novo; it must be a mixture, and a mixture for which
          Matthew the author is responsible. Luke, had he encountered the story for
          the first time in Matthew, would surely have found it incongruous, just as
          any modern reader must. But HOW DID THE STORY GET THAT WAY? What seems to be
          agreed is that it got that way by mixing a theme known to be Matthean
          (kinds) with a simple story very like Luke's. Then the mixture is due to
          Matthew. So far all suggestions coincide. The choice, then, as far as I can
          see, is between Matthew's combination of Luke's story with his own Royal
          motif (my suggestion) and Luke's simplification of a complex story which he
          first encountered in Matthew (Goulder's explanation), a story which Matthew
          had gotten in the first place from an unknown source which already had the
          story in very much its Lukan form (Ken's scenario). It seems to me that the
          hypothesis of an outside but nonLukan source for Matthew is here doing
          unnecessary work, and that it also requires the acceptance of an extremely
          close coincidence. If Matthew got it from a literal outside source S, then
          so, in the most readily imaginable situation, did Luke (this is in effect
          the Q hypothsis). If Matthew got it from Luke, then, well, then he did (this
          is provided for in the Luke A/B hypothesis, as currently developed). Ken's
          proposal gives us instead a choice between (a) S > Mt > Lk, in which, by a
          colossal coincidence, S and Lk are virtually indistinguishable, or (b) Lk >
          Mt, with added elements from the standard Matthean kit. So far, I am
          inclined to prefer the second of these scenarios.

          Is there a real reason not to?

          E Bruce Brooks / University of Massachusetts at Amherst
        • Ken Olson
          Bruce, ... incongruities in Matthew s Great Supper are far more explicable on the hypothesis that Matthew is recasting the Wicked Tenants alone than that he
          Message 4 of 14 , Jun 24, 2011
            Bruce,

            I was initially baffled by your response, as it did not seem to be interacting with what I was arguing about the necessity of taking Wicked Tenants into consideration and also attributed to me a position I was attributing to you. After re-reading your post and mine, I think I may not have been sufficiently clear and the problem lies mostly in the following sentence:

            >> If we are to match intuitions, mine tell me the
            incongruities in Matthew's Great Supper are far more explicable on the
            hypothesis that Matthew is recasting the Wicked Tenants alone than that
            he saw the Great Dinner in something close to Luke's form and order and
            decided to embroider it with material from and place it after his own
            Wicked Tenants. >>

            Perhaps I should have said:

            >>The incongruities in Matthew's Great Supper are far more explicable on the hypothesis that [Matthew is recasting the Wicked Tenants *alone* (so Goulder, Drury)]

            than

            [that he saw the parable in Luke's form and order (Brooks) or something close to it (Beare) and decided to embroider it with material from and place it after his own Wicked Tenants].<<

            Now, granted you and Beare don't discuss the relationship between Matthew's Supper and the Wicked Tenants much (Beare does comment on the initial frame), but the point of my post is I think you need to and would have to argue something along the lines I attribute to your theories here.

            and when I said: >>In effect, Matthew's Supper is the middle term between
            Wicked Tenants and Luke's Supper.<<

            I used "middle term" advisedly, following Sanders, because it describes a phenomenon *without* making a source-critical judgment on it. Where B is the middle term between A and C, this could be because B combined A and C, B used A and was used by C, or A and C used B. In this case, I am arguing that my intuition tells me that the trajectory Wicked Tenants=> Matthew's Supper=> Luke's Supper (A=>B=>C) is more likely than Matthew conflating Wicked Tenants and Luke's Supper (B combined A and C).

            Best wishes,

            Ken

            Ken Olson
            PhD Cand. Religion
            Duke University



            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • E Bruce Brooks
            To: Synoptic (Ken Olson rescriptus) Ken: I am arguing that my intuition tells me that the trajectory Wicked Tenants= Matthew s Supper= Luke s Supper
            Message 5 of 14 , Jun 24, 2011
              To: Synoptic (Ken Olson rescriptus)

              Ken: I am arguing that my intuition tells me that the trajectory Wicked
              Tenants=> Matthew's Supper=> Luke's Supper (A=>B=>C) is more likely than
              Matthew conflating Wicked Tenants and Luke's Supper (B combined A and C).

              Bruce: There are two propositions here: (1) Mt 21:33-46 (Wicked Tenants) >
              Mt 22:1-14 (Marriage Feast), and (2) Mt 21:33-46 is the sole source of Lk's
              Supper story, Lk 14:16-24. I would prefer confirmation before commenting. Is
              it, for instance, claimed that Matthew's Supper story derives only from his
              preceding Wicked Tenants story? Or is there another input?

              E Bruce Brooks / University of Massachusetts at Amherst
            • Ken Olson
              ... Mt 22:1-14 (Marriage Feast), and (2) Mt 21:33-46 is the sole source of Lk s Supper story, Lk 14:16-24. I would prefer confirmation before commenting. Is
              Message 6 of 14 , Jun 24, 2011
                Bruce wrote:

                >>There are two propositions here: (1) Mt 21:33-46 (Wicked Tenants) >

                Mt 22:1-14 (Marriage Feast), and (2) Mt 21:33-46 is the sole source of Lk's

                Supper story, Lk 14:16-24. I would prefer confirmation before commenting. Is

                it, for instance, claimed that Matthew's Supper story derives only from his

                preceding Wicked Tenants story? Or is there another input?<<


                I hesitate to say there is *no* other input in either case. Goulder suggests Matthew is influenced by Mk. 2.19f and the Esther story (I am not sure the latter is necessary) for The Marriage Feast and Drury makes the obvious but sometimes overlooked point that the crisis of Judaism brought about by the destruction of Jerusalem has influenced Matthew. Goulder also allows for the influence of Deut. 20.7 on Luke's Supper. I think both Goulder and Drury presuppose the historical development of Christianity from a Jewish to a Gentile or mixed faith has also influenced their tellings. But if you mean another source in the form of an otherwise unknown parable of Jesus about a dinner, then no, no other sources like that. The more general point i was making, however, is that you should deal with what Goulder says about the origin of the parable before dismissing his belief in Matthew's priority.
                Best,
                Ken


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • E Bruce Brooks
                To: Synoptic / Cc: GPG I had asked Ken Olson whether the first of his two propositions about Matthew s Feast (that it is prior to Luke s Feast, and comes out
                Message 7 of 14 , Jun 25, 2011
                  To: Synoptic / Cc: GPG

                  I had asked Ken Olson whether the first of his two propositions about
                  Matthew's Feast (that it is prior to Luke's Feast, and comes out of
                  Matthew's preceding story) was accurately stated. He has clarified as
                  follows: "Goulder suggests Matthew is influenced by Mk. 2.19f and the Esther
                  story (I am not sure the latter is necessary) for The Marriage Feast." And
                  later: "But if you mean another source in the form of an otherwise unknown
                  parable of Jesus about a dinner, then no, no other sources like that." Then
                  we have to do with the following first proposition: Mt 21:33-46 (Wicked
                  Tenants) + Mk 2:19f (+ ?Esther) > Mt 22:1-14 (Marriage Feast).

                  FIRST PROPOSITION

                  Goulder Paradigm (1898) 2/592 acknowledges that he needs to account for the
                  rather complicated form of Mt's Feast story, considered as prior to and not
                  derived from the Lk parallel. He does this by referring to Goulder Midrash
                  (1974) 415f: "The Marriage-feast parable is nothing but a second version of
                  the Wicked Husbandman [n31: so Jeremias PJ 69 n77, somewhat tentatively] in
                  terms of the Esther story, with suitable Christian glosses, and in the
                  Matthean manner. Esther is a book about King Ahasuerus who marries Esther,
                  and the book describes a series of banquets, so the vineyard-owner becomes a
                  king, and the plot of the parable a marriage-banquet. Since Jesus has
                  described himself as the bridegroom (Mk 2:19f), and his disciples as
                  wedding-guests, the situation is changed from being the king's wedding to
                  being the king's son's wedding . . . Matthew's soaring allegory has now
                  transcended the reality of the story situation, but as elsewhere in his
                  Gospel, allegory is his stock-in-trade and never mind the tale." We have
                  here something of a confession that the resulting tale does not make a lot
                  of sense as such; in particular, the wedding guests of Mark do not
                  correspond well with the wedding guests of the Matthew story. And why does
                  Esther and her many banquets come in? Because of the Goulder lectionary
                  theory. The section in Midrash on the Marriage Feast begins this way: "The
                  second week in Adar, on a date varying between 11th and 14th, comes the
                  feast of Purim, celebrating the deliverance of Israel under Esther. . ." But
                  national deliverance does not seem to be the theme of the Marriage Feast in
                  Matthew; rather, if anything, national rejection. The banishing of the
                  original guests (who can only be Jews in this allegory) to the outer
                  darkness of Hell, with which Mt ends his allegory, seems a very strange way
                  to celebrate or symbolize "the delivery of Israel under Esther." Its
                  attraction would seem to be simply as an example of the lectionary theory,
                  and we must next ask, How attractive is the lectionary theory itself?

                  Goulder himself (Five Stones [2009] 19 describes how this theory of Austin
                  Farrer's first fascinated him: "It was, however, easy to be over-impressed
                  by Austin. I found his books, A Study in St Mark and A Rebirth of Images
                  intoxicating, and in the end this was too much of a good thing." Reflecting
                  at the end, on the success of his Five Theses Against The Biblical
                  Establishment [sic; p137], he says this of the "brilliant but implausible
                  theories" for which he had become known: "Among these was my Lectionary
                  Hypothesis. The close correspondence I found between Matthew's Discourses
                  and the Festivals of the Jewish Year seemed impressive, and it was
                  disappointing that the liturgical theory was not widely accepted. This was
                  partly my own fault. Having explained so much I wondered if more could not
                  be explained by parallels between Matthew and the Jewish weekly cycle. I was
                  unlucky to find what looked like encouraging parallels with the first
                  chapter of Genesis, and in my enthusiasm made claims that were too
                  optimistic. It was not long before it was pointed out to me that the Jewish
                  weekly cycle was only in evidence from Talmudic times, that is, some
                  hundreds of years later" (p135). Whether by the week or the month, the idea
                  that Matthew was written *in the first instance* for the purpose of being
                  read in installments around the church year, and that it was authorially
                  shaped *in the first instance* to be appropriate to that use, and that this
                  was the primary purpose of Matthew in writing it, tends to lack
                  convincement. That the Gospels were later drawn on for a series of regular
                  readings is well known, and that some marks in Gospel manuscripts as early
                  as the 4th century can be construed as marking such readings is certainly
                  possible, but as the governing logic for the Gospel of Matthew as a text, I
                  cannot find that it works, and in general, it seems to have found few
                  takers. In the weekly form in which MG has cast his argument for the passage
                  here in question (in Midrash; see above) it is by his own later admission
                  invalid; the weekly Jewish calendar of the 1c is a chimera. Then that
                  particular explanation fails, and with it the Esther banquets (even if they
                  were typologically appropriate, which does not strongly appear), and with it
                  the argument that Matthew could have written his Feast Parable without help
                  from something like Luke's Parable.

                  I thus think that this First Proposition has to be rejected. If someone
                  wants to revive it under their own name, perhaps using as a Banquet
                  inspiration the wedding image of Mk 2:19f, and showing how that transmutes
                  into the Mt story as we have it, they are free to attempt it. They are also
                  entitled to draw on other OT parallels. Blomberg (in Beale and Carson 2007,
                  74f) finds in the Matthean Feast story a possible echo of the messianic
                  banquet of Isa 25:6-9, and of the destroying kings of Judges 1:8, Isa
                  5:24-25, 1 Macc 5:28); Blomberg notes that "several of Matthew's
                  distinctives may be viewed as inspired by Zeph 1:7-10 (Olson 2005)."
                  Amusingly enough, Blomberg detects no Esther in the vicinity. Besides OT
                  echoes, however, some account will need to be given of how these or other
                  elements have generated, not just details of the Matthean narrative, but its
                  internally confused structure. All that lies in the possible future. At
                  present, and as expounded by MG, to whom Ken has here largely deferred, I
                  can only judge that the proposition fails.

                  SECOND PROPOSITION

                  As confirmed by its propounder, this is the claim that Mt 22:1-14, whatever
                  its own origin, is the source of Lk's Feast story, Lk 14:16-24. As earlier
                  noted, MG's exposition of this point is limited to noting the Lukeness of
                  the Lukan version, which argues equally for originality or secondarity, and
                  thus leaves the question open. I believe I have said (in response to Ron
                  Price, the proprietor of a Q-like theory) that it is obvious that the
                  directionality here runs the other way, from the simpler Lk version to the
                  more complex and internally confused Mt one. By "obvious" I do not mean that
                  this is necessarily the true situation, but that it is the one which will
                  spontaneously occur to the broad mass of decently literate readers. A less
                  obvious reading may in fact be true, but will need to be specially argued
                  for.

                  As for the obviousness of the Lk > Mt directionality here, I need only
                  appeal to the broad mass of decently literate commentators on Matthew and/or
                  Luke. I will now proceed to quote twenty of them, spanning the 20th century,
                  and writing both before and after the publication of MG's Paradigm (1989).
                  It should be noted that nearly all these people believe in Q, so the
                  question as it presents itself to them is not whether one is the source of
                  the other, but of which one better preserves the [supposedly] outside
                  original.

                  1. Harnack: The Sayings of Jesus (1906, ET 1908) 119f devotes an entire page
                  to the dissimilarities between the two, and continues (p121), "There is no
                  need of many words to prove that here St Matthew is almost everywhere
                  secondary; the only question is whether the distinction of two classes of
                  poor, as well as the verbal report of the excuses in St Luke, are primary.
                  The former trait answers to this evangelist's warm interest in the very
                  poorest, and the latter to the pictorial style which is a frequent
                  characteristic of St Luke. Nevertheless, in these traits he may also
                  preserve the original text. The main distinction between the two versions is
                  that St Matthew has transformed a genuine parable into an allegory with an
                  historical motive. / Did, however, the text, as presented in St Luke, form
                  the exemplar of St Matthew? And did it belong to Q/ The first question
                  should perhaps be answered in the affirmative: the exemplar of St Matthew,
                  so far as its essential content is concerned, would not have presented a
                  very different appearance from the text given in St Luke, which besides
                  permits of easy translation back again into Aramaic. The second question I
                  am inclined to answer in the negative . . ."

                  2. Allen: Mt (3ed 1912) 235. "So far the editor has adapted a Logian
                  "kingdom" story to his context. In the original parable the story . . . was
                  used to describe the reception accorded to the good news of the coming
                  kingdom of the heavens. By inserting vv6-7 the editor has adapted this, and
                  brought it into line with Mark's parable of the Husbandman, and the
                  preceding parable of the Two Sons. . . The next four verses seem to be the
                  closing paragraph of another parable. They are hardly suitable here as a
                  conclusion of vv1-10, because the people invited in from the streets could
                  hardly be expected to have provided themselves with festal attire."

                  3. M'Neile: Mt (1915) 314. "Lk has preserved the more original form. Mt has
                  changed 'a certain man' into 'a certain king' . . . and a later hand has
                  added the acts of violence to the slaves, the destruction of the murderers
                  and the burning of their city."

                  4. Easton: Lk (1926) 230. "[Julicher] thinks that these verses [Lk 14:18-20]
                  are a Lukan expansion of Mt v5. But they are perfectly natural in the story;
                  Mt has shortened to compensate for his allegorical additions. . . It
                  appears, then, they Lk's form of this parable approximates the original much
                  more closely than Mt's; in fact, the addition of vv21b-22 is about the only
                  important enlargement in Lk."

                  5. Montefiore: Synoptic (2ed 1927) 287f, ap Mt. "The more original form of
                  the parable may be that which we find in Luke . . [v3-5] The banquet of the
                  original parable is turned by Matthew into a wedding feast prepared by a
                  king. . . v8 connects with v5, when v6-7, the later insertions, are omitted.
                  . . v11-13. An addition, which would seem to be borrowed from another
                  current parable. The addition is hardly suitable here."

                  6. Montefiore: Synoptic (2ed 1927) 511f, ap Lk. "Luke's form is the more
                  original. Matthew's version in 22:6-7 has been adapted to the fall of
                  Jerusalem."

                  7. Robinson: Mt (1928) 178. "There seems to be here a parable which is,
                  perhaps, better represented in Luke 14:16-24. If the two are originally
                  identical, then this gospel [that is, Mt] shows a certain development from
                  the earlier form. The most striking difference . . . But this is far from
                  being the only modification . . ."

                  8. Creed: Lk (1930) 192. "Luke does not give the somewhat incongruous
                  addition of Mt that the king sent his armies and destroyed those murders and
                  burnt up their city (22:7), nor does he include the Matthean pendant of the
                  guest who entered without a wedding garment."

                  9. Kilpatrick: The Origins of the Gospel According to St Matthew (1946) 30.
                  "[Mt] 22:1-14 appears to be conflated out of two parables with editorial
                  additions. The Q parable may be taken to be given in Luke 14:15-24." . . .
                  [p82] The parable [Mt] 22:1-14 has suffered two kinds of modification. The
                  reference to the fall of Jerusalem has been introduced in v7, and the story
                  of the Guest without a Wedding Garment, v11-13, has been tacked on, leaving
                  its traces perhaps at v2 also. Lastly, two formulae at v131b and v14 have
                  been attached. There is no trace of these changes in the parallel Lk
                  14:16-24, so that we may presume that they were absent from Q."

                  10. Leaney: Lk (1958) 214. "Since they had themselves refused to come this
                  apparent punishment is not apt at the end of the parable, and comparison
                  with Mt 22:1-10 suggests that the ending is due to Luke, who has thus made
                  it an answer to the pious guest's remark in v15. Mt 22:1-14 conflates the
                  parable with another one; see Kilpatrick p30."

                  11. Caird: Lk (1962) 177 (ap v23). Some scholars consider that this verse is
                  a pro-Gentile elaboration of the original story, because it has no
                  counterpart in Mt 22:2-10. The Matthean version is, however, seriously
                  corrupt; the guests not only disregard but do violence to the servants sent
                  to summon them, the preparations for dinner are interrupted by a punitive
                  expedition to destroy the city in which they live, and after that the dinner
                  is still ready."

                  ----------1974: Year of publication of Goulder Midrash-------

                  12. Marshall: Lk (1978) 584. "A very similar parable appears in Mt 22:1-14,
                  but with considerable alteration and addition. It is generally accepted that
                  the two parables are variants of one original theme, and considerable
                  progress can be made towards reconstructing a basic form of the parable
                  (which turns out to be very close to the Lukan form)."

                  13. Beare: Mt (1981) 432. "In this form, the parable is full of
                  incongruities. . . To magnify the absurdities, the king punishes the
                  murderers by killing them and burning down their city - which is, we must
                  presume, his city too. While this military punitive expedition is being
                  organized and completed, the banquet, roasts and all, is sitting around
                  getting cold, for other guests to enjoy when they have been brought in from
                  the streets, where they are still to be found amid the ruins of the burning
                  city! . . . In its Lukan version, we have a genuine parable, not an allegory
                  . . . It might be remarked that we can hardly imagine that Luke has found
                  this parable in Matthew and has pared it down in this fashion. Either the
                  two evangelists have drawn it from a common source (Q) which Matthew has
                  greatly elaborated, or it has come to them through independent channels of
                  transmission."

                  14. Fitzmyer: Lk (1985) 2/1052. "Why Matthew has varied the form of the
                  parable as he has does not concern us here; the Lucan variants, however, are
                  easily explained." Blessed are those who can get out of explaining the
                  Matthean variants.

                  15. Schnackenburg: Mt (1985 ET 2002) 213. "This much discussed parable,
                  explained in many different ways in the history of interpretation, was
                  developed by Matthew from a much simpler narrative."

                  --------1989: Year of Publication of Goulder Paradigm--------------

                  16. Nolland: Lk (1993) 2/754. "The present unit is paralleled in Mt 22:1-10,
                  though there is considerable dispute whether Matthew and Luke received this
                  parable in the same form. In the end we cannot be sure, but the following
                  points can be made. (i) Most of the Matthean differences can be seen to
                  accord with Matthean theological interests and redactional tendencies and so
                  *could* be attributed to Matthean redaction. (ii) Despite Goulder (588-592),
                  it is difficult to see how the Lukan form could come from anything like the
                  Matthean form, and much easier to see how something like the Lukan form
                  could have developed into the Matthean form."

                  17. Gundry: Mt (1994) 438. "Luke's list is sometimes thought to be the
                  result of assimilation to the saying in Lk 14:13, but the similarity is
                  better taken as an indication that Luke has preserved the original setting
                  and wording of the parable. The poor, crippled, blind, and lame begged along
                  the streets and lanes of the city. Matthew has thrown the city to the flames
                  and can no longer write of such beggars, so he generalizes concerning the
                  people the slaves might find along the country roads."

                  18. Boring: Mt (NIB v8, 1995) 4167. "Matthew has adapted the Q form, placing
                  it in this context to serve as the final item in his triad of judgement
                  parables . . . By extending its allegorical features, assimilating it to the
                  preceding two parables, and placing it last, Matthew makes this story the
                  climax of the progression of this three-parable set" [ap 22:2]. "Matthew
                  introduced the kingship motif into the preceding parable p21:43]. To
                  correspond to this, the "man" of Q who gave a different party now becomes a
                  king who gives a wedding feast for his son. The father/son motif binds
                  together all three parables of this unit."

                  19. McNicol (ed): Beyond the Q Impasse (1996) 211. "It has long been asked
                  what relationship might obtain between this story and the similar Parable of
                  the Marriage Feast in Mt 22:1-10. There is no evidence of Matthean
                  linguistic characteristics present in this (parallel?) Lukan account, which
                  one would expect if Luke were relying upon Mt at this point. Our conclusion
                  is that Luke did not obtain his feast-story from the similar one in Mt 22,
                  but used another source." [The reluctance of this work, which generally
                  espouses and expounds a Mt > Lk directionality, to derive the Lukan Feast
                  from the Matthean feast should be given its due weight].

                  20. Davies and Allison: Mt (1997) 3/196 [on the assumption that a still
                  simpler story lies behind Thomas and Luke as well as Matthew] "In Luke and
                  his tradition the meal becomes a banquet and the guests become more
                  obviously culpable because forewarned . . .Matthew's version is even more
                  removed from the original - as well as from the real world."

                  SUMMARY: What we see here is (1) in directional terms, a consistent
                  reluctance to see Lk as derivable from Mt, and in absolute terms (2) a
                  consistent appreciation of Matthean compositional activity, integrating the
                  story into the sequence where he has placed it. I have found no major voice
                  who defend the Matthean story as an original composition; on the contrary,
                  the commentators seem to consistently point to inconcinnities which are
                  consistent with a scenario of adaptation, but are not consistent with a
                  scenario of composition. I thus do not find that this sample of opinions
                  will sustain the Second Proposition; For that matter, it tends to be
                  inimical to the First Proposition also.

                  THE BOTTOM LINE

                  Why does this matter? Because these passages are make or break for the FH
                  (as Goulder prefers to call it, see Five Stones 135).

                  In Mt/Lk taken together, there are among other things two pairs of stories.
                  One member of each pair (call it A) is reasonably straightforward. The other
                  (call it B) is compromised by the addition of a King motif, which introduces
                  narrative inconcinnities, and general louses up the story. It would be SO
                  nice if the A members were both in Matthew (or failing that, both in Luke).
                  We would then have not only A > B in each pair of stories, as a decently
                  literate reader's natural impression of their relationship would suggest, we
                  would also have Mt > Lk (or the reverse) as the implied Synoptic hypothesis,
                  and all would be, as Bernhard Karlgren used to say, plain sailing. There
                  would be no Q, and one of the Second Tier Gospels would follow, and derive
                  literary material from, the other.

                  Unfortunately, this does not work. The A members are NOT in the same gospel,
                  and the same arguments that MG uses so successfully in the case of the
                  Talents (where the secondary inconcinnities of the Lukan member are good for
                  a laugh and a half) are not available in the case of the Feast, where MG can
                  only point out (see again Paradigm 2/558f) that the Lukan member is very
                  Lukan. This does not meet the case, and in particular, it does not meet the
                  counterposition that has been accumulating in the literature since Harnack
                  1906. It does not deal with the apparent operation of Matthew on prior
                  material, and the resulting inconcinnities and unrealities in Matthew.

                  We can only conclude that, as far as these two symmetrical but contrasted
                  examples show, the Mt/Lk common stories cannot be plausibly construed as
                  unidirectional. A bidirectional character must be conceded. This situation
                  can be resolved only in two ways. One is the Outside Source solution, of
                  which Q and Ron Price's variant of Q are both specimens. The other is to
                  deny the integrity of at least one of Mt or Lk, permitting one of them to be
                  both earlier and later than the other. This is the solution I have been
                  pursuing for some years now, both on this list [Synoptic, and latterly GPG]
                  and in the halls and corridors of SBL. What it has going for it is that it
                  does not come apart at the seams upon encountering the two Royally Confused
                  Parable Sets here considered; one set is in fact Lk > Mt, and the other is
                  just as convincingly Mt > Lk. It remains to be shown that dividing the Mt/Lk
                  Double Tradition material in this way leads to a plausible scenario for all
                  three texts involved: Luke A (Mark plus some new material incorporated by
                  Luke from church tradition known to him plus some original extensions),
                  Matthew (based on Mark and Luke A, with many rearrangements and some new
                  material of his own), and Luke B (based on Matthew with some relocation of
                  previous material and a few last contributions of new matter). This
                  demonstration is currently in progress, and it would be premature to report
                  success. It is however fair to say that there seems to be, so far, no direct
                  refutation.

                  The FH having thus struck out (and with it the Griesbach or GH, which
                  assumes a similar Mt > Lk unidirectionality), on the instance here
                  considered and on several others of like character, including the two
                  Sermons and the two versions of the Lord's Prayer, all of which are
                  perceived by decently literature readers as implying Lk > Mt, the players
                  still standing at this moment seems to be two. They are: (1) the Q family,
                  and (2) the Luke A/B model. We shall see. In the meantime, be it noted that
                  the Luke A/B model retains one distinct advantage of the FH: it accounts not
                  only for the Major Agreements (the parable-length pieces of Mt/Lk material),
                  but also, in principle, for the hundreds of Minor Agreements, which the Q
                  family of theories leave unexplained. I may be moved to give an example of
                  how those agreements can be accommodated in the Luke A/B model presently.

                  C 2011 by E Bruce Brooks / University of Massachusetts at Amherst
                • Mark Goodacre
                  A couple of quick comments on Bruce s most recent essay. ... It is 1989. ... No, Michael retained emphasis on the cycle of festivals in his later work,
                  Message 8 of 14 , Jun 25, 2011
                    A couple of quick comments on Bruce's most recent essay.

                    > Goulder Paradigm (1898) 2/592 acknowledges

                    It is 1989.

                    > In the weekly form in which MG has cast his argument for the passage
                    > here in question (in Midrash; see above) it is by his own later admission
                    > invalid; the weekly Jewish calendar of the 1c is a chimera. Then that
                    > particular explanation fails, and with it the Esther banquets (even if they
                    > were typologically appropriate, which does not strongly appear), and with it
                    > the argument that Matthew could have written his Feast Parable without help
                    > from something like Luke's Parable.

                    No, Michael retained emphasis on the cycle of festivals in his later
                    work, including Purim. So Matt. 22.1-14 coincides with Purim. See
                    "Sections and lections in Matthew," JSNT 76 (1999): 79-96 (92-3).

                    > The FH having thus struck out (and with it the Griesbach or GH, which
                    > assumes a similar Mt > Lk unidirectionality), on the instance here
                    > considered and on several others of like character, including the two
                    > Sermons and the two versions of the Lord's Prayer, all of which are
                    > perceived by decently literature readers as implying Lk > Mt, the players
                    > still standing at this moment seems to be two.

                    I suggested recently that using terms like "obvious" in this context
                    could come across as being a touch rude, but I added that I was sure
                    it was not your intention. You have now substituted the term
                    "decently literature [sic] readers", which I think stands for
                    "decently literate readers" (cf. earlier in your message). I am not
                    sure that it is a great improvement to be speaking about "decently
                    literate readers" though it could be that my lack of decent literacy
                    misconstrues your meaning here.

                    All best
                    Mark
                    --
                    Mark Goodacre
                    Duke University
                    Department of Religion
                    Gray Building / Box 90964
                    Durham, NC 27708-0964    USA
                    Phone: 919-660-3503        Fax: 919-660-3530

                    http://www.markgoodacre.org
                  • Ken Olson
                    ... wants to revive it under their own name, perhaps using as a Banquet inspiration the wedding image of Mk 2:19f, and showing how that transmutes into the Mt
                    Message 9 of 14 , Jun 25, 2011
                      E. Bruce Brooks wrote:



                      >>I thus think that this First Proposition has to be rejected. If someone

                      wants to revive it under their own name, perhaps using as a Banquet

                      inspiration the wedding image of Mk 2:19f, and showing how that transmutes

                      into the Mt story as we have it, they are free to attempt it. ...

                      Besides OT echoes, however, some account will need to be given of how these or other

                      elements have generated, not just details of the Matthean narrative, but its

                      internally confused structure. All that lies in the possible future. At

                      present, and as expounded by MG, to whom Ken has here largely deferred, I

                      can only judge that the proposition fails.<<

                      As it appears that at present neither of us is willing to spend the time necessary to compose his own original treatment addressing the thematic and verbal parallels between the Tenants and Matthew's Great Supper and expound on their role in the composition of the Matthean narrative, and Goulder's treatment of those issues is disqualified on the basis of his lectionary theory, I shall bow out of the discussion here.

                      Best wishes,

                      Ken

                      Ken Olson
                      PhD Student
                      Duke Religion











































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