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

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  • 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 1 of 14 , Jun 24, 2011
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      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 2 of 14 , Jun 25, 2011
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        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 3 of 14 , Jun 25, 2011
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          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 4 of 14 , Jun 25, 2011
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            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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