Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

RE: [Synoptic-L] Mark's dependence on Paul

Expand Messages
  • Matson, Mark (Academic)
    Ron: I am having some trouble with this. First, what evidence do you have that would point to a) dependence on Paul, or even b) that Paul invented the key
    Message 1 of 25 , Oct 11, 2011
    • 0 Attachment
      Ron:

      I am having some trouble with this. First, what evidence do you have that would point to a) dependence on Paul, or even b) that Paul invented the key idea of resurrection (or atonement)? I just don't know where you would go to find supporting evidence for either of these, but especially not the latter.

      But beyond that, I would really like to explore the key issue of atonement. Is Mark's language of "ransom" really the same as Paul's idea? And I am not convinced that Paul even has a clear atonement idea, certainly not the "propitiation" or "substitution" approach. The issue of hilasterion, and even the syntax of the sentence in Rom 3:34-35 is notoriously difficult and subject to various readings. And Rom. 5:8 simply says Christ died for us (huper hmwm), and we are justified in/by his blood.

      I think the linkage you point to here, at least, has to assume a theology of atonement for both Paul (which is rightly subject to great debate), and to impute a similar theology on the gospels where it seems to me to be almost absent.

      Ron Price wrote:
      >
      > I am not positing such a textual dependence between Mark and Paul's
      > letters, but rather that Mark got his Pauline theology and attitude to the
      > twelve either directly or indirectly from Paul. I should further come clean and
      > say that most of what I am proposing is similar (but not wholly derived from)
      > what Joel Marcus argued in the NTS article mentioned by Stephen Carlson.

      ... and in a previous post:
      >As I see it, Mark's dependence on Paul was considerable. It included for instance, extensive use of EUAGGELION (gospel) and >PISTEUW (believe), the death of Jesus as atoning (Rom 3:25; 5:8; Mk 10:45); abrogation of food laws (Rom 14:20; Mk 7:19), and >assorted negative views of the twelve.

      >Then there is the resurrection of Jesus. This can be regarded as the keystone of Paul's theology (Hering on 1 Cor, p.156, with >references to Barth and Menaud). It was a crucial part of Paul's gospel (1 Cor 15:3-5), a gospel which he received by revelation (Gal >1:11-12). So it should be viewed as Paul's inspired creation, and Mark must also have got the idea of the resurrection of Jesus (Mk >8:31 etc.) directly or indirectly from Paul.


      Mark A. Matson
      Academic Dean
      Milligan College
      423-461-8720
      http://www.milligan.edu/administrative/mmatson/personal.htm
    • Bob Schacht
      ... Paul had virtually no direct knowledge of the person of Jesus of Nazareth. He was traveling among people who, likewise, had no direct knowledge of Jesus.
      Message 2 of 25 , Oct 11, 2011
      • 0 Attachment
        At 11:01 AM 10/11/2011, E Bruce Brooks wrote:


        >[snip]
        >
        >Daniel (to Ron): My point is that your dependence seems indistinguishable
        >from dependence on common communal lore. How are you making a dependence
        >between texts more plausible?
        >
        >Bruce: Proper question. If the doctrine of the Atonement is unique to Paul,
        >then its presence in Mark indicates that at least that passage in Mark is
        >aware of Paul. If the doctrine is more general, then that conclusion does
        >not necessarily follow. We are now interested to know if Paul originated the
        >Atonement doctrine, as a development of the prior Resurrection belief, or if
        >he found it ready to hand. I don't know of any immediate evidence either
        >way. ...

        Paul had virtually no direct knowledge of the person of Jesus of
        Nazareth. He was traveling among people who, likewise, had no direct
        knowledge of Jesus. Furthermore, Jesus did not leave behind a "Guide
        to my crucifixion and resurrection: meaning and interpretation." The
        closest thing we have any inkling of is the Markan tradition,
        repeated a number of times-- e.g. Mark 8, "31 And he began to teach
        them that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected by
        the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and
        after three days rise again."

        IIRC, that's about all that Jesus had to say, according to our
        sources, about his own death and resurrection.
        So, I rather imagine that Paul had a good many discussions with many
        people about the meaning of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection.
        Furthermore, I suspect that the idea of the atonement took shape and
        evolved during Paul's lifetime, as he tried to make sense of Jesus'
        life and death (and resurrection.) And, of course, Paul was not alone
        in this effort. But I doubt that Jesus had such conversations with
        Peter or his brother James, unless it was at the "first Apostolic
        Conference" in Jerusalem.

        In other words, although Paul may have had a role in shaping the
        debate, I doubt that it sprung fully formed from his forehead.

        But most of the analysis taking place here is based on literary
        sources, so we will probably never know the details of how the
        doctrine of the atonement developed and came into being. I think the
        differences between Mark and Paul indicates that the early Christians
        were kicking the idea around, but had not yet put the idea in writing.

        Bob Schacht
        Northern Arizona University






        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • David Mealand
        Ron replied ... Mk 10.45 speaks of a ransom ..... Mk 14.24 speaks of the blood of the covenant ..... Rom 3.25 does allude to atonement by means of blood. .....
        Message 3 of 25 , Oct 12, 2011
        • 0 Attachment
          Ron replied
          ----------------
          Mk 10.45 speaks of a ransom .....
          Mk 14.24 speaks of the blood of the covenant .....
          Rom 3.25 does allude to atonement by means of blood. .....

          A modern scholar may well be correct in seeing these interpretations as
          distinctly different, but surely the crucial question here is whether the
          author of the gospel of Mark would have seen them as distinctly different,
          or as essentially the same. For what it¹s worth, my vote would be for the
          latter.
          -------------------

          Not at all. Some-one in the 1st Century of the Common Era is MUCH
          more likely to have known the difference between a covenant and Yom Kippur.
          People now can't differentiate these because a) they struggle with
          understanding the Jewish context b) they view the whole matter down
          a couple of millennia of amalgamating several diverse motifs into various
          later syntheses in which the originally separate analogies have lost
          their identity and individuality.

          David M.


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


          --
          The University of Edinburgh is a charitable body, registered in
          Scotland, with registration number SC005336.
        • Ronald Price
          I had written: A modern scholar may well be correct in seeing these interpretations as distinctly different, but surely the crucial question here is whether
          Message 4 of 25 , Oct 12, 2011
          • 0 Attachment
            I had written:

            A modern scholar may well be correct in seeing these interpretations as
            distinctly different, but surely the crucial question here is whether the
            author of the gospel of Mark would have seen them as distinctly different,
            or as essentially the same. For what it¹s worth, my vote would be for the
            latter.

            David Mealand replied:

            Not at all. Some-one in the 1st Century of the Common Era is MUCH
            more likely to have known the difference between a covenant and Yom Kippur.
            .....

            David,

            I was not referring to "some-one" in general, but to the author of Mark's
            gospel in particular. Yes, he lived in the 1st century. But we know a fair
            amount about him through what he wrote. Let's consider the following case.

            "... all the Jews do not eat unless they wash their hands" (Mk 7:3)
            Morna Hooker says this statement is untrue. So much for Mark's knowledge of
            Jewish affairs - unless of course you would challenge her assessment on the
            basis that she is viewing the whole matter down a couple of millennia!

            I concede that this is only one example. You may be able to come up with
            counter-examples from elsewhere in Mark.

            Ron Price,

            Derbyshire, UK

            http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/syno_home.html



            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Ronald Price
            ... Mark, I ve already given a partial answer to this in my reply to Daniel Grolin, to the effect that these ideas were not in the logia, which I attribute to
            Message 5 of 25 , Oct 12, 2011
            • 0 Attachment
              Mark Matson wrote:

              > I am having some trouble with this. First, what evidence do you have that
              > would point to a) dependence on Paul, or even b) that Paul invented the key
              > idea of resurrection (or atonement)? I just don't know where you would go to
              > find supporting evidence for either of these, but especially not the latter.

              Mark,

              I've already given a partial answer to this in my reply to Daniel Grolin, to
              the effect that these ideas were not in the logia, which I attribute to the
              original apostles.

              One further point is worth adding. Paul is the only follower of Jesus we
              know who was not one of the original apostles, who died before the gospels
              were written, and who also clearly had the intellect and boldness to come up
              with ideas/interpretations which must have seemed like heresy to many of his
              fellow Jews, yet become the theological foundation of a major new religion.

              ..... I would really like to explore the key issue of atonement .....

              In addition to my responses to David Mealand, I would argue that Mk 14:22-24
              has to be dependent (directly or indirectly) on Paul (1 Cor 11:23-26). "from
              the Lord" (APO TOU KURIOU), especially in the light of Gal 1:11-12, should
              be taken as meaning "by revelation" in view of the fact that Paul had never
              met the historical Jesus. If the historical Jesus had initiated the
              statement about his blood of the covenant being poured out "for you", it
              makes little sense to *follow* this (as in Mark) with a plea to escape
              (14:36) the solemn commitment he has just made. In any case from a
              historical viewpoint, Jesus could hardly have formulated a ritual which is
              based on his (at that time) future death. The ritual must surely have been
              devised in retrospect by an early Christian wanting to present a particular
              interpretation of his death. Paul is by far the most likely source of such a
              magnificent interpretation. Thus Mk 14:22-24 probably derives from Paul.

              Ron Price,

              Derbyshire, UK

              http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Frank Jacks
              Instead of jumping in with a comment about some of the details raised in this continuing discussion, I wish to back-track to what might be a root cause for
              Message 6 of 25 , Oct 12, 2011
              • 0 Attachment
                Instead of jumping in with a comment about some of the details
                raised in this continuing discussion, I wish to back-track to what
                might be a root cause for some of the differing opinions which have
                been being posted here, for I notice that in your response to Bruce
                that you made a statement that might well be a premise for your
                position/statements (???). At least, I do have a question about
                something you said:
                > BRUCE: Notice (just for starters) the first use of this term ["gospel"]
                > within Mark proper, 1:14. "Now after Jesus was arrested, Jesus came into
                > Galilee, preaching the Gospel of God, and saying, The time is fulfilled, and
                > the Kingdom of God is at hand, repent and believe in the Gospel." Notice
                > that there is nothing here about any Gospel of Jesus; it is all about God.
                >
                > RON: Paul used the strange phrase "gospel of God" (1 Th 2:2; Rom 1:1;
                > 15:16), and as you have pointed out, Mark used it (Mk 1:14). It seems to me
                > very likely that Mark had heard Paul use the phrase, especially if, as I
                > believe, the Mark of Phm 24 was the author of the gospel of Mark.
                I wonder whether your suspicion that the author of the second gospel
                was the "Mark of Phm 24" is the basis for your having sought for
                confirmation by finding ideas/images/concepts/vocabulary in Mark
                that seem to be derived from Paul or whether it was finding in this
                gospel what seemed to you to be such ideas/images/concepts/vocabulary
                distinctively "Pauline" that led you to conclude that it was written by
                someone who had knowledge about Paul, perhaps the "Mark of Phm
                24" (???).

                Are you aware of a logical or psychological sequence between these
                two?

                Thanks,

                Frank

                Clive F. Jacks, Th.D. (Union Seminary, N.Y.C.)
                Professor Of Religion, Emeritus
                Pikeville College,
                Pikeville, KY

                (but now happily retired back home in the metro Atlanta area!)
              • Dennis
                Ronald said, in part, Paul is the only follower of Jesus we know who was not one of the original apostles, who died before the gospels were written, and who
                Message 7 of 25 , Oct 12, 2011
                • 0 Attachment
                  Ronald said, in part, "Paul is the only follower of Jesus we
                  know who was not one of the original apostles, who died before the gospels
                  were written, and who also clearly had the intellect and boldness to come up
                  with ideas/interpretations which must have seemed like heresy to many of his
                  fellow Jews, yet become the theological foundation of a major new religion."

                  Is this is assumption based on history or on the Christian mythology that grew around the "letters?" We read hardly anything about the letters (just a few patristic statements) until the end of the second century, and those as reactions to Marcionism and various Gnostic Christianities. At the same time, I haven't found any early (first through third century, perhaps) non-Christian references about "Paul" yet. (I would love to know of one.)
                  Dennis Dean Carpenter
                  Dahlonega, Ga.




                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Ronald Price
                  ... Frank, It was after concluding that both Phm and Mark were written in Rome, and knowing that tradition ascribed the gospel to Mark , that it seemed
                  Message 8 of 25 , Oct 12, 2011
                  • 0 Attachment
                    On 12/10/2011 17:08, "Frank Jacks" <cfjacks@...> wrote:

                    > I wonder whether your suspicion that the author of the second gospel was the
                    > "Mark of Phm 24" is the basis for your having sought for confirmation by
                    > finding ideas/images/concepts/vocabulary in Mark that seem to be derived from
                    > Paul or whether it was finding in this gospel what seemed to you to be such
                    > ideas/images/concepts/vocabulary distinctively "Pauline" that led you to
                    > conclude that it was written by someone who had knowledge about Paul, perhaps
                    > the "Mark of Phm 24" (???).
                    >
                    Frank,

                    It was after concluding that both Phm and Mark were written in Rome, and
                    knowing that tradition ascribed the gospel to "Mark", that it seemed natural
                    to put all these together and conclude that the Mark of Phm 24 was probably
                    the Mark who wrote the gospel. My discovery of Pauline characteristics in
                    Mark was in no way dependent on the connection with Phm 24. But the two do
                    seem to tie in nicely together.

                    Ron Price,

                    Derbyshire, UK

                    http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/



                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Ronald Price
                    I had written: Paul is the only follower of Jesus we ... Dennis, My statement is based on what little we know from the NT about the pre-70 CE followers of
                    Message 9 of 25 , Oct 12, 2011
                    • 0 Attachment
                      I had written:

                      Paul is the only follower of Jesus we
                      > know who was not one of the original apostles, who died before the gospels
                      > were written, and who also clearly had the intellect and boldness to come up
                      > with ideas/interpretations which must have seemed like heresy to many of his
                      > fellow Jews, yet become the theological foundation of a major new religion.

                      Dennis Carpenter replied:

                      > Is this is assumption based on history or on the Christian mythology that grew
                      > around the "letters?"

                      Dennis,

                      My statement is based on what little we know from the NT about the pre-70 CE
                      followers of Jesus.

                      Ron Price,

                      Derbyshire, UK

                      http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/



                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • David Mealand
                      I don t wish just to critique a view so here is an alternative. Mark and Paul both have passages which connect the death of Jesus with ideas of covenant and
                      Message 10 of 25 , Oct 12, 2011
                      • 0 Attachment
                        I don't wish just to critique a view so here is an alternative.

                        Mark and Paul both have passages which connect the death of Jesus
                        with ideas of covenant and the shedding of blood. Given that a covenant
                        creates or maintains a bond between those who participate, and
                        involved a shared meal after a sacrifice, one can get some idea of how
                        this analogy is working.

                        So Mark and Paul share this motif. Also it may not be the oldest part
                        of the supper tradition; the eschatological words about not eating the
                        passover
                        (again) until the coming of the Kingdom are probably the oldest.
                        So did Paul invent the motif, and did Mark derive it from Paul? That is far
                        from clear. For that one would have to argue "my blood of the covenant"
                        is an adaptation of "the new covenant in my blood". I think I would
                        find it hard to be convinced of that, and would be more inclined
                        to think that someone before Paul produced a "cup word", to match
                        the "bread word". The "bread word" might fit with the use of
                        interpretative words at first Jewish, then Christian Passover meals.
                        (What did the followers
                        of Jesus do after the crucifixion when the next Passover came along?)
                        I may be making some extended inferences here, and I would be more
                        definite about thinking it likely that Mark and Paul have similar motifs
                        about the covenant because they each get them from something which
                        developed between c.34CE (=33+1) and the time Paul writes to Corinth.

                        By "Mark" I mean a text that is attributed to someone called Mark, I do
                        not mean that everything in the text was either all created by Mark or all
                        derived from tradition. I think in the text of Mark we have some
                        tradition which reflects the use of one or more Semitic languages - on
                        this E.C.Maloney,
                        Semitic Interference in Marcan Syntax, did careful work, and more recently
                        P.M. Casey made a vigorous case for Aramaisms. I would not rule
                        out Mark having some awareness of Paul, but I am fairly confident
                        that Mark contains a mixture of material, some of it from the time of Jesus,
                        some from the period before Paul's letters, and some from any time up to
                        around 75CE.

                        One final issue: Mark has two passages which interpret the death of
                        Jesus. One
                        flags up the "rescue at the cost of a life" motif, the other a covenant bond
                        focused on a shared sacrificial meal. Why do we have these two only
                        in this text when others e.g. Pauline & Deutero-Pauline texts and
                        Hebrews have further
                        motifs not found here?

                        David M.





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


                        --
                        The University of Edinburgh is a charitable body, registered in
                        Scotland, with registration number SC005336.
                      • E Bruce Brooks
                        To: Synoptic (GPG) In Response To: Bob Schacht On: Paul and Atonement From: Bruce BOB: Paul had virtually no direct knowledge of the person of Jesus of
                        Message 11 of 25 , Oct 13, 2011
                        • 0 Attachment
                          To: Synoptic (GPG)
                          In Response To: Bob Schacht
                          On: Paul and Atonement
                          From: Bruce

                          BOB: Paul had virtually no direct knowledge of the person of Jesus of
                          Nazareth.

                          BRUCE: According to 2Cor 5:16 and other places, Paul was aware of knowledge
                          of Jesus "after the flesh," but determined not to pay attention to it;
                          everything for Paul is in Jesus's death. What I get here is not exactly
                          ignorance but resistance. He does not accept what the direct-knowledge
                          people say about Jesus during his lifetime.

                          BOB: He was traveling among people who, likewise, had no direct knowledge
                          of Jesus.

                          BRUCE: Depends how far Jesus traveled, and how far the Jesus missionaries
                          had traveled, before Jesus's death. My impression (from Mark) is that the
                          range went well into Syria, quite possibly Damascus though less likely
                          Antioch. Ignoring the Jerusalem-centered career of Paul as a Lukan fiction
                          (undertaken for the best of reasons, but still a fiction), it is not
                          necessarily impossible that Paul's first persecutions were among people who
                          had been reached by those with direct knowledge of Jesus before his death.

                          BOB: Furthermore, Jesus did not leave behind a "Guide to my crucifixion and
                          resurrection: meaning and interpretation." The closest thing we have any
                          inkling of is the Markan tradition, repeated a number of times-- e.g. Mark
                          8, "31 And he began to teach them that the Son of man must suffer many
                          things, and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes,
                          and be killed, and after three days rise again."

                          BRUCE: Problem is that one of those predictions is interpolated, which
                          impugns the whole set. If we follow out the implications, it means that
                          Jesus's death was unexpected by him and his followers. There is a good deal
                          of evidence in support; I have previously referred to Yarbro Collins (whose
                          reconstruction of the original Passion Narrative lacks a Burial and
                          Resurrection narrative altogether, also Peter Kirby's study of the earliest
                          tradition of Jesus's death. Then just as the Markan predictions of Jesus's
                          resurrection are textually secondary, so is the Markan account of Jesus's
                          resurrection. They are not biographical facts, they are later church
                          theories, put into Mark's narrative as facts, but not what Mark originally
                          reported as facts. Mark's gospel ended triumphantly, to be sure, but it was
                          not that kind of triumph.

                          BOB: IIRC, that's about all that Jesus had to say, according to our sources,
                          about his own death and resurrection.

                          BRUCE: I agree, and I note that it comes to nothing. Jesus had no
                          presentiment of his death. It suited later believers to think that he had,
                          but that is a different question.

                          BOB: So, I rather imagine that Paul had a good many discussions with many
                          people about the meaning of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection.

                          BRUCE: The big event here, I would think, is the impression of Peter and
                          after him a few others, that Jesus had appeared to them after his death,
                          giving them assurance that he was, if not still alive "after the flesh" at
                          least operative in the world. Mk 14:28 and 16:7 make Jesus predict that this
                          vision will occur, but again, these happen to be the two most obvious
                          interpolations in Mark, accepted by many as such, though not everyone cares
                          to explore the implications very far. The implications are that the
                          reappearance of Jesus was unexpected by those who had that vision, just as
                          Jesus's death was unexpected by himself.

                          As for Paul, he himself confines his knowledge to a vision of his own, plus
                          a few days, later on, with Peter. We should not imagine Paul as at first
                          curious about Jesus; rather, according to his own account, he hated Jesus
                          and all that his early followers stood for, as an offense against Jewish
                          doctrine, and sought to kill them all he could. It was his experience of the
                          vision, however you visualize it (and Paul visualizes it rather differently
                          than Luke, a thing we have come to expect from Luke), that turned him
                          around. More or less literally.

                          BOB: Furthermore, I suspect that the idea of the atonement took shape and
                          evolved during Paul's lifetime, as he tried to make sense of Jesus' life
                          and death (and resurrection.)

                          BRUCE: Not Paul, but the Jesus followers after Jesus's unexpected death. And
                          in several stages. First no resurrection, then the idea of a resurrection,
                          and probably quite a bit later, the reading of an Atonement idea into the
                          resurrection (the sacrificial interpretation of Jesus's death).

                          BOB: And, of course, Paul was not alone in this effort.

                          BRUCE: He was not part of it; see above. And among the Jesus followers, some
                          stood apart from it, and were content to continue to follow Jesus as a
                          John-the-Baptist style guide to salvation.

                          BOB: . . . But I doubt that Jesus had such conversations with Peter or his
                          brother James, unless it was at the "first Apostolic Conference" in
                          Jerusalem.

                          BRUCE: Agreed that no such conversations were held, by anybody, during
                          Jesus's lifetime. The problem with which any such conversations dealt did
                          not arise until after Jesus's death. Nor is it necessarily valid to imagine
                          a "democratic" model of Jesus theory, as arising from the reasoning together
                          of people on the same authority level. The resurrection was, for a short
                          time, an idea held only by Peter, later by a few other select persons, but
                          all of them persons having stature in the movement, not just some Eddie from
                          Chorazin. I think we are on statistically better ground in imagining these
                          doctrines as arising among persons of some authority in the movement. As far
                          as the Resurrection goes, the finger of anecdotal evidence seems to point to
                          Peter. Which makes it that much more logical that the early Paul would seek
                          him out for a first-hand account of that experience.

                          BOB: In other words, although Paul may have had a role in shaping the
                          debate, I doubt that it sprung fully formed from his forehead.

                          BRUCE: Paul did not invent the Resurrection, a concept which arose among
                          Jesus's early followers already in the early Thirties. We have not so far
                          succeeded in finding anyone but Paul who held the Atonement interpretation
                          of Jesus's death, but we have pushed its emergence back behind his first
                          literary leavings, and thus into the Forties. This, as it happens, coincides
                          with the probable date at which at least one of the two places in Mark which
                          reflect that doctrine entered the text of Mark, namely, the middle Forties.
                          So either Paul thought of it, or someone else about that time thought of it.

                          Who might have thought of it? Someone with a deep sense of the meaning of
                          sacrifice, that is, the idea that an evil in one place can translate into a
                          good in another place. No one familiar with soldierly tradition will find
                          this at all strange, but we seem not to be dealing here with soldiers; more
                          likely priests. The priests were especially thick in Jerusalem, and it may
                          be that the doctrine arose among the Jesus followers in Jerusalem; they
                          would also have been the ones to benefit most from it, in terms of authority
                          contests with others of light and leading in the movement, especially the
                          Galilean leaders. Also consider the tourist trade: On Mark's account, both
                          the preaching of Jesus and the reappearance of Jesus took place Galilee, but
                          as to the DEATH of Jesus, well, on that the Jerusalemers have an absolute
                          monopoly. The more the DEATH of Jesus can be developed as central to the
                          meaning of Jesus, the more the Jerusalemers stand to acquire standing as
                          those on the scene. That is speculative (though not unreasonable). What
                          about confirmation? Do we see hints in the record of conflicts of authority
                          between Jerusalem and Galilee? Wow, do we ever; both Luke and Matthew (and
                          who copied from whom it is not now necessary to adjudicate) make Jesus side
                          with the Jerusalemers, and curse the churches of Galilee, above all the
                          probably leading church of Capernaum. So yes, there was an authority war.
                          And Matthew and Luke, in some order, were on the Jerusalem side of it.

                          If the idea arose in Jerusalem, then Paul of Tarsus, whose activities were
                          confined to the north, did not invent it. If he did not invent it, it must,
                          when it reached him, have been very agreeable to his sensibilities. Since
                          Paul was a strict Pharisee, the idea of sacrifice, though perhaps not at the
                          surface of his consciousness, will have been underneath there somewhere, a
                          unifying concept ready to be activated by a sufficient stimulus. I here wish
                          to suggest that contact with the Jerusalem Atonement idea may have been that
                          stimulus. Now, have we any grounds for thinking that Paul visited Jerusalem
                          sometime in the middle Forties? Yes, we do. Paul dates just such a visit,
                          and identifies it as dealing with questions of doctrine, in the fourteenth
                          year of his conversion. Now, these figures have caused endless worry among
                          the Paul researchers; they cannot quite be made to jibe with reason or with
                          other evidence. I suggest that they can be reconciled if we regard Paul as
                          having (a little inaccurately, but in order not to postdate by too much the
                          revelations to Peter and the Twelve) inwardly dated his vision of Jesus to
                          the year of Jesus's death, 30. If so, then his doctrinal visit to Jerusalem
                          will have been in the year 44. Again, we have a convergence of evidence for
                          the Atonement doctrine, both Pauline and Markan, in the middle Forties.

                          BOB: But most of the analysis taking place here is based on literary
                          sources, so we will probably never know the details of how the doctrine of
                          the atonement developed and came into being. I think the differences between
                          Mark and Paul indicates that the early Christians were kicking the idea
                          around, but had not yet put the idea in writing.

                          BRUCE: I think its first appearance in writing is the late interpolations in
                          Mark already referred to. Now we can notice that Mark (according to
                          persistent anecdotal tradition) was a Jerusalemer. Certainty in detail is
                          not available in these matters, but I think we have a general chronology
                          that pretty much works. Then the idea arose in Jerusalem, and existed there
                          by 44. Mark, who had not originally held it, came to be impressed byh it,
                          and stuck it in at a couple places in his previously written Gospel, one of
                          the places being necessarily written shortly after 44. Paul, who visited
                          Jerusalem in 44, may have picked it up at that time.

                          As for names and faces, there is more to be done with the exact sequence of
                          things before and after the execution of Jim Zebedee, but perhaps not very
                          conveniently in this message.

                          Bruce

                          E Bruce Brooks
                          University of Massachusetts at Amherst

                          Copyright C 2011 by E Bruce Brooks
                        • Bob Schacht
                          ... Yes. And therefore, his knowledge was indirect, not direct. Since your point-counterpoint goes on in the same manner, I ll let you have the last word. Bob
                          Message 12 of 25 , Oct 13, 2011
                          • 0 Attachment
                            At 04:15 AM 10/13/2011, E Bruce Brooks wrote:
                            >To: Synoptic (GPG)
                            >In Response To: Bob Schacht
                            >On: Paul and Atonement
                            >From: Bruce
                            >
                            >BOB: Paul had virtually no direct knowledge of the person of Jesus of
                            >Nazareth.
                            >
                            >BRUCE: According to 2Cor 5:16 and other places, Paul was aware of knowledge
                            >of Jesus "after the flesh," but determined not to pay attention to it;
                            >everything for Paul is in Jesus's death. What I get here is not exactly
                            >ignorance but resistance. He does not accept what the direct-knowledge
                            >people say about Jesus during his lifetime....

                            Yes. And therefore, his knowledge was indirect, not direct. Since
                            your point-counterpoint goes on in the same manner, I'll let you have
                            the last word.

                            Bob Schacht
                            Northern Arizona University




                            >BOB: He was traveling among people who, likewise, had no direct knowledge
                            >of Jesus.
                            >
                            >BRUCE: Depends how far Jesus traveled, and how far the Jesus missionaries
                            >had traveled, before Jesus's death. My impression (from Mark) is that the
                            >range went well into Syria, quite possibly Damascus though less likely
                            >Antioch. Ignoring the Jerusalem-centered career of Paul as a Lukan fiction
                            >(undertaken for the best of reasons, but still a fiction), it is not
                            >necessarily impossible that Paul's first persecutions were among people who
                            >had been reached by those with direct knowledge of Jesus before his death.
                            >
                            >BOB: Furthermore, Jesus did not leave behind a "Guide to my crucifixion and
                            >resurrection: meaning and interpretation." The closest thing we have any
                            >inkling of is the Markan tradition, repeated a number of times-- e.g. Mark
                            >8, "31 And he began to teach them that the Son of man must suffer many
                            >things, and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes,
                            >and be killed, and after three days rise again."
                            >
                            >BRUCE: Problem is that one of those predictions is interpolated, which
                            >impugns the whole set. If we follow out the implications, it means that
                            >Jesus's death was unexpected by him and his followers. There is a good deal
                            >of evidence in support; I have previously referred to Yarbro Collins (whose
                            >reconstruction of the original Passion Narrative lacks a Burial and
                            >Resurrection narrative altogether, also Peter Kirby's study of the earliest
                            >tradition of Jesus's death. Then just as the Markan predictions of Jesus's
                            >resurrection are textually secondary, so is the Markan account of Jesus's
                            >resurrection. They are not biographical facts, they are later church
                            >theories, put into Mark's narrative as facts, but not what Mark originally
                            >reported as facts. Mark's gospel ended triumphantly, to be sure, but it was
                            >not that kind of triumph.
                            >
                            >BOB: IIRC, that's about all that Jesus had to say, according to our sources,
                            >about his own death and resurrection.
                            >
                            >BRUCE: I agree, and I note that it comes to nothing. Jesus had no
                            >presentiment of his death. It suited later believers to think that he had,
                            >but that is a different question.
                            >
                            >BOB: So, I rather imagine that Paul had a good many discussions with many
                            >people about the meaning of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection.
                            >
                            >BRUCE: The big event here, I would think, is the impression of Peter and
                            >after him a few others, that Jesus had appeared to them after his death,
                            >giving them assurance that he was, if not still alive "after the flesh" at
                            >least operative in the world. Mk 14:28 and 16:7 make Jesus predict that this
                            >vision will occur, but again, these happen to be the two most obvious
                            >interpolations in Mark, accepted by many as such, though not everyone cares
                            >to explore the implications very far. The implications are that the
                            >reappearance of Jesus was unexpected by those who had that vision, just as
                            >Jesus's death was unexpected by himself.
                            >
                            >As for Paul, he himself confines his knowledge to a vision of his own, plus
                            >a few days, later on, with Peter. We should not imagine Paul as at first
                            >curious about Jesus; rather, according to his own account, he hated Jesus
                            >and all that his early followers stood for, as an offense against Jewish
                            >doctrine, and sought to kill them all he could. It was his experience of the
                            >vision, however you visualize it (and Paul visualizes it rather differently
                            >than Luke, a thing we have come to expect from Luke), that turned him
                            >around. More or less literally.
                            >
                            >BOB: Furthermore, I suspect that the idea of the atonement took shape and
                            >evolved during Paul's lifetime, as he tried to make sense of Jesus' life
                            >and death (and resurrection.)
                            >
                            >BRUCE: Not Paul, but the Jesus followers after Jesus's unexpected death. And
                            >in several stages. First no resurrection, then the idea of a resurrection,
                            >and probably quite a bit later, the reading of an Atonement idea into the
                            >resurrection (the sacrificial interpretation of Jesus's death).
                            >
                            >BOB: And, of course, Paul was not alone in this effort.
                            >
                            >BRUCE: He was not part of it; see above. And among the Jesus followers, some
                            >stood apart from it, and were content to continue to follow Jesus as a
                            >John-the-Baptist style guide to salvation.
                            >
                            >BOB: . . . But I doubt that Jesus had such conversations with Peter or his
                            >brother James, unless it was at the "first Apostolic Conference" in
                            >Jerusalem.
                            >
                            >BRUCE: Agreed that no such conversations were held, by anybody, during
                            >Jesus's lifetime. The problem with which any such conversations dealt did
                            >not arise until after Jesus's death. Nor is it necessarily valid to imagine
                            >a "democratic" model of Jesus theory, as arising from the reasoning together
                            >of people on the same authority level. The resurrection was, for a short
                            >time, an idea held only by Peter, later by a few other select persons, but
                            >all of them persons having stature in the movement, not just some Eddie from
                            >Chorazin. I think we are on statistically better ground in imagining these
                            >doctrines as arising among persons of some authority in the movement. As far
                            >as the Resurrection goes, the finger of anecdotal evidence seems to point to
                            >Peter. Which makes it that much more logical that the early Paul would seek
                            >him out for a first-hand account of that experience.
                            >
                            >BOB: In other words, although Paul may have had a role in shaping the
                            >debate, I doubt that it sprung fully formed from his forehead.
                            >
                            >BRUCE: Paul did not invent the Resurrection, a concept which arose among
                            >Jesus's early followers already in the early Thirties. We have not so far
                            >succeeded in finding anyone but Paul who held the Atonement interpretation
                            >of Jesus's death, but we have pushed its emergence back behind his first
                            >literary leavings, and thus into the Forties. This, as it happens, coincides
                            >with the probable date at which at least one of the two places in Mark which
                            >reflect that doctrine entered the text of Mark, namely, the middle Forties.
                            >So either Paul thought of it, or someone else about that time thought of it.
                            >
                            >Who might have thought of it? Someone with a deep sense of the meaning of
                            >sacrifice, that is, the idea that an evil in one place can translate into a
                            >good in another place. No one familiar with soldierly tradition will find
                            >this at all strange, but we seem not to be dealing here with soldiers; more
                            >likely priests. The priests were especially thick in Jerusalem, and it may
                            >be that the doctrine arose among the Jesus followers in Jerusalem; they
                            >would also have been the ones to benefit most from it, in terms of authority
                            >contests with others of light and leading in the movement, especially the
                            >Galilean leaders. Also consider the tourist trade: On Mark's account, both
                            >the preaching of Jesus and the reappearance of Jesus took place Galilee, but
                            >as to the DEATH of Jesus, well, on that the Jerusalemers have an absolute
                            >monopoly. The more the DEATH of Jesus can be developed as central to the
                            >meaning of Jesus, the more the Jerusalemers stand to acquire standing as
                            >those on the scene. That is speculative (though not unreasonable). What
                            >about confirmation? Do we see hints in the record of conflicts of authority
                            >between Jerusalem and Galilee? Wow, do we ever; both Luke and Matthew (and
                            >who copied from whom it is not now necessary to adjudicate) make Jesus side
                            >with the Jerusalemers, and curse the churches of Galilee, above all the
                            >probably leading church of Capernaum. So yes, there was an authority war.
                            >And Matthew and Luke, in some order, were on the Jerusalem side of it.
                            >
                            >If the idea arose in Jerusalem, then Paul of Tarsus, whose activities were
                            >confined to the north, did not invent it. If he did not invent it, it must,
                            >when it reached him, have been very agreeable to his sensibilities. Since
                            >Paul was a strict Pharisee, the idea of sacrifice, though perhaps not at the
                            >surface of his consciousness, will have been underneath there somewhere, a
                            >unifying concept ready to be activated by a sufficient stimulus. I here wish
                            >to suggest that contact with the Jerusalem Atonement idea may have been that
                            >stimulus. Now, have we any grounds for thinking that Paul visited Jerusalem
                            >sometime in the middle Forties? Yes, we do. Paul dates just such a visit,
                            >and identifies it as dealing with questions of doctrine, in the fourteenth
                            >year of his conversion. Now, these figures have caused endless worry among
                            >the Paul researchers; they cannot quite be made to jibe with reason or with
                            >other evidence. I suggest that they can be reconciled if we regard Paul as
                            >having (a little inaccurately, but in order not to postdate by too much the
                            >revelations to Peter and the Twelve) inwardly dated his vision of Jesus to
                            >the year of Jesus's death, 30. If so, then his doctrinal visit to Jerusalem
                            >will have been in the year 44. Again, we have a convergence of evidence for
                            >the Atonement doctrine, both Pauline and Markan, in the middle Forties.
                            >
                            >BOB: But most of the analysis taking place here is based on literary
                            >sources, so we will probably never know the details of how the doctrine of
                            >the atonement developed and came into being. I think the differences between
                            >Mark and Paul indicates that the early Christians were kicking the idea
                            >around, but had not yet put the idea in writing.
                            >
                            >BRUCE: I think its first appearance in writing is the late interpolations in
                            >Mark already referred to. Now we can notice that Mark (according to
                            >persistent anecdotal tradition) was a Jerusalemer. Certainty in detail is
                            >not available in these matters, but I think we have a general chronology
                            >that pretty much works. Then the idea arose in Jerusalem, and existed there
                            >by 44. Mark, who had not originally held it, came to be impressed byh it,
                            >and stuck it in at a couple places in his previously written Gospel, one of
                            >the places being necessarily written shortly after 44. Paul, who visited
                            >Jerusalem in 44, may have picked it up at that time.
                            >
                            >As for names and faces, there is more to be done with the exact sequence of
                            >things before and after the execution of Jim Zebedee, but perhaps not very
                            >conveniently in this message.
                            >
                            >Bruce
                            >
                            >E Bruce Brooks
                            >University of Massachusetts at Amherst
                            >
                            >Copyright C 2011 by E Bruce Brooks
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >------------------------------------
                            >
                            >Synoptic-L homepage: http://NTGateway.com/synoptic-lYahoo! Groups Links
                            >
                            >
                            >

                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                          Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.