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RE: [Synoptic-L] The Davidic Entry into Jerusalem

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  • Bob Schacht
    ... Dennis, Years ago, we had an online seminar with J D Crossan, who popularized the phrase Prophecy Historicized (Birth of Christianity, p. 521), in
    Message 1 of 50 , Nov 5, 2011
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      At 06:43 AM 11/5/2011, Dennis Goffin wrote:

      >Jack, The Aramaic corpus of sayings which you have done so
      >much work on are basically no different from the Wisdom literature
      >of the OT. I would not go so far as to say there is nothing of the
      >historical Jesus in the Gospels, merely that in my view the unknown
      >Gospel writers who do not appear to have had any personal
      >acquaintance with the man have fleshed out their story with material
      >based on incidents and 'prophecies' in the OT, a lot of which seems
      >to have been based on stories about Elijah and Elisha. To dismiss
      >miracles as unhistorical fiction but then wish to treat the
      >remainder as to be worthy of serious consideration as historical
      >reportage, is in my view somewhat schizophrenic as a scholarly mode
      >of enquiry.
      >Dennis

      Dennis,
      Years ago, we had an online seminar with J D Crossan, who popularized
      the phrase "Prophecy Historicized" (Birth of Christianity, p. 521),
      in connection with the resurrection story. This looked to me like a
      possible example of a genre, and tried to get him to elaborate on how
      one might recognize this phenomenon, and differentiate it from
      "history remembered." I was disappointed when he declined to develop
      this idea. The Davidic Entry may be another such example.

      It would be only natural for followers of Jesus to see in Jesus' life
      echoes of Hebrew prophecies, because that of course would enhance the
      status of Jesus and assist the selling of the Good News. If they came
      up with one good match between an event in Jesus' life and a
      prophecy, it would be only natural for them to look for more such
      examples. If we automatically throw out as unhistorical every action
      of Jesus that matches in any way a Biblical prophecy, we risk
      throwing out genuine historic material.

      If we are to advance our ability to differentiate between "history
      remembered" and "prophecy historicized," we need to take a better
      look at the process of historicizing prophecies to understand how and
      when it was done. In the case of the resurrection story, Crossan
      pulls together bits and pieces of a large number of prophecies. To
      me, that diminishes the power of his claim. A cleaner case could be
      made if there was a simple 1:1 match between the prophecy and the
      claimed historical event.

      My point is that before we start throwing the idea of historicized
      prophecy around, don't we need a better method of differentiating
      between prophecy historicized and history remembered? Otherwise it
      merely becomes a kind of biblical Rorschach test, where we see in the
      passage what we want to see.

      Bob Schacht
      Northern Arizona University


      > To: Synoptic@yahoogroups.com
      >From: jkilmon@...
      >Date: Sat, 5 Nov 2011 07:49:13 -0500
      >Subject: Re: [Synoptic-L] The Davidic Entry into Jerusalem
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      > Does anyone consider that if the historical, sandals in the sand,
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      >Yeshua/Jesus thought of himself as the predicted Enochian-Danielic Bar Nasha
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      >(not the Messiah) that he himself "midrashed" some of his actions? The
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      >unqualified "Jesus myth" authors appear to have done their jobs well in that
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      >even the scholars are claiming everything in the NT is a forgery,
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      >interpolation, hoax, agendized contrivance or written by Marcion. Do you
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      >think Jesus did not have access to the book of Zechariah? Since the ass was
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      >a symbol of peace and so much of his message was centered around peace, I
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      >take it Jesus' corpus of sayings is not considered when assessing the
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      >historicity of one of his reported actions?
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      >Regards,
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      >
      >Jack
      >
      >
      >
      >-----Original Message-----
      >
      >From: Dennis Goffin
      >
      >Sent: Saturday, November 05, 2011 6:49 AM
      >
      >To: Synoptic@yahoogroups.com
      >
      >Subject: [Synoptic-L] The Davidic Entry into Jerusalem
      >
      >
      >
      >Bruce, Why is the presumption here that we are dealing with an
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      >actual event and not an imagined event based on the OT passage ? The fact
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      >that the other 3 writers copy Mk means just that and no more. All we know is
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      >that we are reading a story. Given the number of actions of Jesus recounted
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      >in the Gospels which too easily recall similar tropes in the OT, should we
      >
      >not be more wary in our interpretations ?Dennis
      >
      >
      >
      >To: Synoptic@yahoogroups.com
      >
      >CC: gpg@yahoogroups.com
      >
      >From: brooks@...
      >
      >Date: Thu, 3 Nov 2011 12:02:34 -0400
      >
      >Subject: RE: [Synoptic-L] Mark's biggest sayings block (Mt 19:28)
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      >
      >To: Synoptic (GPG)
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      >
      >
      >In Response To: Ron
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      >
      >
      >On: Markan Priority Etc
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      >
      >
      >From: Bruce
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      >
      >
      >The background argument here is about the viability of a Q-like hypothesis,
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      >this being perhaps the leading modern way in which the unsettling Gospel of
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      >Mark is replaced by something more to the liking of the current posterity.
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      >RON: . . . Nonsense. The fact that Matthew was written after Mark, does not
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      >
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      >necessarily show that all the material in Mark had an earlier origin than
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      >all the material in Matthew.
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      >BRUCE: But the earliness of Markan material, especially where Mt/Lk have
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      >
      >
      >parallels, is the logical first presumption, and in no place where such
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      >
      >parallels exist can it convincingly be shown that Mark is later. This covers
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      >
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      >a large proportion of both Mt and Lk. It is, as I suppose, the chief ground
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      >
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      >on which the priority of Mark rests in the first place. To put it mildly,
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      >
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      >this situation does not create an expectation of earliness for the M, L, and
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      >(if I may give it a new name) ML material in Mt/Lk.
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      >RON: For instance, if one or both made use of an even earlier written source
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      >'X',
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      >BRUCE: Which there is no a priori reason to assume.
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      >RON: . . . and if Mark was more inclined than Matthew to modify X, e.g. to
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      >better suit a Gentile audience,
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      >BRUCE: But there is no reason to make that assumption either, and the
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      >material in Mk which most strikingly suggests a Gentile audience (meaning,
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      >
      >
      >one unfamiliar with Jewish ways) is Mk 7:3-4, in parenthetical form, and
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      >thus not necessarily characteristic of the early layers of Mark. So what
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      >
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      >*does* characterize the early layers of Mark? I think Ropes (describing not
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      >any layers at all, but, as he supposes, the whole text of Mark) has got it
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      >
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      >right: Mark is an apologia for the death of Jesus. It seeks to explain that
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      >
      >
      >death to the followers of Jesus. That is, its first and primary and defining
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      >audience was the members of the Jesus movement shortly after the death of
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      >Jesus. There is an awful lot of stuff in Mark that has no other discernible
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      >
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      >purpose save to recount the failure of Jesus at Jerusalem, which has no
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      >other very obvious textual purpose save to serve as the data for the
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      >quaesita which Ropes sees in the text: to give that failure an
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      >interpretation tolerable to Jesus's followers.
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      >It is an excellent exercise to see what the later Gospels do with some of
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      >that material. Did Jesus himself stage the Davidic entry into Jerusalem, as
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      >Mark inescapably shows him as doing? Take a look at Matthew and the others,
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      >and see how well that survives in their telling. (John is especially
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      >revealing).
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      >RON: . . . then some of the X material will appear in a more primitive form
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      >in Matthew, i.e. Matthew will reflect the earlier version of that material.
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      >For 'X', read the logia, and this is the essence of my case.
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      >BRUCE: And of everybody else's, more or less. But for reasons already
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      >interpolated, I find the case gratuitous. It is also circular: If Matthew
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      >
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      >were disposed to treat the supposed X material differently than he treats
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      >his Markan material, then his treatment would show that the X material was
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      >different from Mark, and thus possibly earlier than Mark. But we do not know
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      >X otherwise than via Matthew (and/or Luke); the rest is supposition.
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      >RON: If the components of the Synoptic Problem had been as black-and-white
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      >as you make out here, NT scholars would surely have solved the problem long
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      >ago.
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      >BRUCE: And I think that in fact they did. The trouble is that the solution
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      >went against current preferences in theology, which is exactly what Mark by
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      >itself does. I mentioned in an earlier note that though Markan Priority is
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      >widely conceded, it is almost never implemented in practice. Take any recent
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      >book (if you can afford one) on the Historical Jesus. What Gospels do they
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      >cite? By and large, they cite all the Synoptics together, without any
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      >consistent sense that some Synoptic evidence might be of more weight than
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      >other Synoptic evidence, and with Matthew very prominent among the
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      >citations. So yes, the problem (insofar as it consists of Synoptic sequence)
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      >has been solved, at least in a rough crude way, but that solution is dead,
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      >inert, and nonfunctional in contemporary scholarly discourse. It does not
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      >guide contemporary scholarly discourse. The Synoptic Problem does not so
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      >much need to be solved again (though I and a few others have been trying to
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      >urge some refinements) as the old solution needs to find ears willing to
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      >hear it. So far, the record is not very impressive. But perhaps another
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      >decade will tell a different story.
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      >RON (to my comment that anybody can write in a parallelistic style): Again
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      >this is incorrect. Only a very small percentage of the first-century
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      >population knew how to write.
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      >BRUCE: Red herring, and even the herring is wrong. What counts is the
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      >capacity of the literate, whatever their absolute numbers, to write in
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      >parallelistic style. No one acquainted in any serious degree with the Jewish
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      >Scriptures was unfamiliar with parallelistic style, as characterizing
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      >Scriptural pronouncement. That is the point of relevance for the writers of
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      >the Gospels, or of any other texts of which the Gospel writers made use. And
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      >as for the nonliterate majority, what about the old guy over there in the
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      >corner, who had never learned his letters, but had spent a lifetime
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      >absorbing and indeed memorizing large chunks of Scripture. What if he went
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      >forth on alternate days as a street preacher, making up tales or sayings of
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      >Jesus? Doing so in parallel fashion would have been, to him, approximately
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      >as easy as breathing.
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      >RON: Besides this there are other indications of the early origin of the
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      >aphorisms. (1) Jesus the Jew was known as a teacher. If he didn't teach
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      >parables which just happen to fit the needs of Gentile churches, or parables
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      >whose style is suspiciously Lukan, he must have taught aphorisms such as the
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      >mission instructions, the authenticity of part of which was confirmed by
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      >Paul in 1 Cor 9:14, c.f. 1 Cor 1:21-23a & 1 Thess 5:2,6 which also reflect
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      >early synoptic aphorisms.
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      >
      >
      >BRUCE: The Twelve myth (on the exiguousness of which in Mark, see again
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      >Eduard Meyer, with or without my subsequent improvements) was widespread. It
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      >was widespread at a certain time. But what time? Paul alludes to it as
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      >common property in the mid 50's. Not that Paul is always strictly accurate
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      >in his claims of what everyone believes, but suppose that to be correct.
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      >
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      >Then when did that symbolic organizational myth, the myth of the Twelve,
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      >arise? On present evidence, at any time between 30 and, say, 53. Lots of
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      >room in there. Do we have witnesses to the early tradition of Jesus's
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      >followers? Yes we do, in the Rabbinic literature. Then (accepting Klausner's
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      >report) how many of those followers does Rabbinic tradition report? Twelve?
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      >Nope: Five; same number as in Mark. Are the Rabbinic Five the same as the
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      >Markan Five? Again, nope. They are a later substitution set, the population
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      >of the Jesus leadership after the death of James Zebedee and the flight of
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      >Paul (see again my SBL paper of 2010). John Zebedee is there, but not James.
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      >Interesting fact, or so I should have thought. It would seem to date the
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      >Rabbinic inventory of the Five to shortly after the year c44.
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      >
      >Let me pause a moment over this. Scholarship has accustomed itself to the
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      >idea that Paul is the earliest witness to Christianity, and thus to Jesus.
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      >But all we know of Paul's beliefs is that (a) they were violently opposed to
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      >those of some other Christians, not least but not exclusively at Corinth,
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      >Paul's own treatment of those differences being as violent as could be
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      >desired, and (b) we know absolutely nothing of the content of Paul's beliefs
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      >earlier than his own epistles, meaning, earlier than the decade of the
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      >Fifties. Repeat: Nothing. A seven-year span, from c50 to c55 or so, and that
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      >toward the end of Paul's life, is all we know firsthand about Paul. What he
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      >believed in the Forties we do not know, and as to what beliefs he
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      >encountered as a foe of the Christians in the Thirties, we do not know them
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      >either, though we do know that he sought to persecute unto death those who
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      >held them.
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      >Some witness.
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      >RON (proceeding with evidence for earliness in Mt/Lk material): (2) The
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      >leaders of the original apostles thrived for 30 years in Jerusalem from ca.
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      >30 CE to ca. 60 CE.
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      >BRUCE: No. The myth of Jerusalem is propounded by Matthew, and echoed by a
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      >somewhat chastened Luke, in (among other things) the claim that Jesus's
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      >appearances to his disciples, the key proof of the Resurrection, occurred in
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      >Jerusalem. But Mark makes it obvious that the Appearance of Jesus took place
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      >
      >in Galilee. Lohmeyer and a few others have had the colossal nerve to take
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      >
      >
      >this fact seriously. I think their nerve is well bestowed, and that we have
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      >
      >here a Jerusalemization trajectory running through all four Gospels (John
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      >
      >even Jerusalemizes the teaching career of Jesus, with some ludicrous results
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      >
      >
      >in terms of narrative inconcinnity). See again my Trajectories paper,
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      >
      >
      >http://www.umass.edu/wsp/alpha/wsp1-171-172.pdf
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      >
      >
      >in which four of the most obvious ones are briefly spelled out. Keith Yoder
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      >has called attention to data which in effect defines a fifth Trajectory; see
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      >
      >
      >http://www.umass.edu/wsp/alpha/wsp1-173-176.pdf
      >
      >
      >
      >This is very careful work, and I think firmly establishes its thesis. Given
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      >the implication of the Trajectories, not only is Mark early, but early in a
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      >developmental sense; that is, early in ways which cannot with historical
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      >plausibility be reversed. For instance, it is not within the realm of the
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      >probable that the Jesus movement began in Jerusalem and later spread to
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      >provincial Galilee, to take up its HQ at the seaside village of Capernaum,
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      >there to make up trifling tales about Peter's mother-in-law. The likelihood
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      >is all the other way. But if so, the idea that the direction of Christian
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      >matters was from the beginning located in Jerusalem will have to be
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      >rejected. It wasn't.
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      >RON: Surely they produced something in writing during this period to back up
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      >their cause.
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      >BRUCE: There is a lot of traditional material about what the Twelve taught,
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      >in their role as teachers. Of course the texts we have are late, and they
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      >are also fantastical, and worse, they are uncanonical (except for the We
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      >material in Acts, which has somewhat of the same character, including
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      >
      >miracles wrought by Paul). But it is surely interesting that the thrust of
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      >
      >that teaching is overwhelmingly non-Resurrection. That is, it is at more or
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      >
      >less the doctrinal level of (a) the early layers of Mark, (b) the Epistle of
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      >James, (c) the hymn embedded in Philippians 2, and (d) in further liturgical
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      >
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      >terms, the Didache and the earlier Two Ways tract of which the Didache
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      >
      >incorporates the earliest form (the one in Barnabas is much later, and has
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      >been rearranged by someone who did not understand its original logic). That
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      >is, the Apostolic literature, in its overall tenor, is very much in the
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      >doctrinal line of these extant and early documents, some canonical and some
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      >not. But very little of this literature has anything to do with the
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      >Resurrection; it preaches a quite different Christianity. So what the
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      >Apostles produced, or conformed to, insofar as the Apostolic literature is
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      >worth anything as evidence, is likely to be an early form of Christianity,
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      >
      >the thing whose basic teachings were propounded before the death of Jesus.
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      >
      >
      >(And let me note parenthetically that the Resurrection interpretation about
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      >Jesus's death can hardly have arisen before his death, for all that Mark,
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      >when Mark finally comes to embrace Resurrection theology, tries to provide
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      >predictions thereof - predictions at which Mark honestly enough shows
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      >
      >Jesus's lifetime followers as rejecting).
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      >
      >
      >We know that Paul in the Fifties held a strong version of the Resurrection
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      >
      >theory, namely the Atonement theory, that Jesus not only survived his death,
      >
      >
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      >but that his death is the key event in salvation history. Luke reports Paul
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      >at great length in Acts. Does the Lukan Paul hold the Atonement theory?
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      >
      >
      >Nope. Why not? Perhaps it has something to do with the authorial purposes of
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      >
      >
      >Luke. I forbear to cite yet another paper of my own, but surely this fact
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      >bears thinking about.
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      >
      >
      >RON (with a third reason for the earliness of the Mt/Lk material): (3)
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      >
      >Certain of the aphorisms contain evidence of mistranslation from Aramaic,
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      >
      >
      >and word play which only works in Aramaic. This takes their origin back to
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      >
      >the time of the original apostles.
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      >
      >
      >BRUCE: The Aramaic sea is one of storms, with people who know Aramaic
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      >
      >
      >disagreeing about what is a mistranslation and what is acceptable if
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      >
      >
      >inelegant Greek. At which a non-Aramaic-possessing bystander like myself can
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      >
      >
      >only stare in puzzlement. But I think it is fair to say that not all who
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      >
      >
      >seem to be capable of judging the matter agree with Torrey, or with each
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      >
      >
      >other, about the extent of Aramaic mistranslation. Let us however suppose
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      >
      >
      >that there are incontrovertible cases. Do those necessarily take us back to
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      >
      >
      >"the time of the original apostles?" No, they don't. Aramaic continued in
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      >use for centuries after Jesus; an origin in Aramaic does not, of itself,
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      >
      >
      >prove an early date. What are the dates of the Aramaic Targums?
      >
      >
      >
      >RON: (4) A few of the aphorisms reveal a Jewish environment in which
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      >
      >
      >Gentiles were seen as alien. This places their origin firmly before the
      >
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      >
      >massive expansion of the Jesus movement inspired by Paul, and well before
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      >
      >the period when the gospels were penned.
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      >
      >
      >BRUCE: Again, no, though this too is a very widely held idea.
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      >
      >
      >There are a very few places in the NT generally in which "the Jews" are
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      >
      >
      >perceived as alien (gJohn has a couple, the interpolation in the otherwise
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      >
      >
      >Pauline 1 Thess is a famous example). This is good evidence for a church
      >
      >
      >
      >which has separated itself from Judaism, and cast off its Jewish roots, as
      >
      >
      >
      >Marcion wanted all Christians to do. Note that they are either clearly
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      >
      >
      >post-70 (the 1 Thess interpolation, 1 Thess 2:13-16, see Walker, whose
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      >
      >
      >easiest interpretation is a reference to Titus in 70) or very late 1c
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      >
      >
      >(gJohn).
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      >
      >
      >As for the Gentiles seen as alien (the other side of the coin), the Gentile
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      >
      >mission (the validity of accepting Gentile converts, and eventually, the
      >
      >
      >
      >whole "Jewish Christian" controversy) is variously regarded in Mark, and
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      >
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      >also as between Matthew and Luke (both of whom symbolize Gentiles as
      >
      >
      >
      >Samaritans). That Mark in his early layers, and Matthew at certain moments
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      >
      >(eg, Go not to any town of the Samaritans) show the Jesus message as
      >
      >
      >
      >directed exclusively at Jews, proves, I should have thought, that these
      >
      >
      >
      >Gospels in fact reflect, or in the case of Matthew, at least remember, the
      >
      >
      >
      >time when this was indeed the case: the time before the open acceptance of a
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      >
      >Gentile Mission. A time before the universalization of Christianity. If so,
      >
      >
      >
      >then it is not correct to say that this perception of Gentiles as alien
      >
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      >existed "well before the Gospels were penned." Instead, it is correct to say
      >
      >
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      >that it existed *at the time* the earliest segments of the two earliest
      >
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      >Gospels were penned.
      >
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      >
      >RON (to my dating of the Taylor Apocalypse segments and Mk 10:39): Such
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      >early dating of Mark seems fashionable in some circles. I don't agree with
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      >it, but this would take us into a whole new debate.
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      >
      >
      >BRUCE: No, it is very much the substance of the present debate (see above).
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      >
      >
      >The problem with several published early datings of Mark (eg Wenham) is that
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      >
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      >they assume that Mark is integral, which it is not, and make other
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      >
      >assumptions and inferences with which I, for one, am not prepared to go
      >
      >
      >
      >along. I would not call that position "fashionable" (a plonking word, in any
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      >
      >
      >case); I would call it marginal, meaning merely, not widely held by the
      >
      >
      >
      >professionals. My position is that the early date of Mark comes up for
      >
      >
      >
      >serious consideration when it is realized that Mark, as an accretional text,
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      >
      >
      >does not have a single date of composition, but a span during which its
      >
      >
      >
      >formative process took place.
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      >
      >RON: Talk about swings and roundabouts. You start with a rigidly
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      >
      >black-and-white synoptic gospel dependence view, and you end with a Markan
      >
      >
      >
      >analysis whose complexity is reminiscent of Kloppenborg's layering of Q. In
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      >
      >
      >neither case does the nature of the data justify such complex layering. But
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      >
      >
      >let's count our blessings: at least you are analyzing a document that
      >
      >
      >
      >actually existed.
      >
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      >
      >BRUCE: This misrepresents my view, which perhaps is best strategy for those
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      >
      >
      >whose own views conflict. It should be obvious, but let me nevertheless
      >
      >
      >
      >note, that Kloppenborg's layering of Q does not impugn (nor would it
      >
      >
      >
      >support) my stratification of Mark; for that matter, it does not necessarily
      >
      >
      >
      >impugn the Q layering of Allison or the Thomas layering of DeConick and
      >
      >
      >
      >others. No result for any one text necessarily constrains solutions for any
      >
      >
      >
      >other text, whether reached by the same or different persons. Except in fun,
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      >
      >
      >and I am not prepared to reduce the present issue to the level of fun. I
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      >
      >
      >think it is important, and needs serious thought.
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      >
      >MORAL FOR THOSE INTERESTED
      >
      >
      >
      >The evidence for multiple stages in a text, at least the evidence to which I
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      >
      >
      >try to confine myself, is manifest, open, and apparent. It is not
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      >
      >
      >suppositious; it is there for everybody. It consists in things like the
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      >intrusiveness of Mk 14:28 (which interrupts a sequence, and is ignored, in
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      >
      >
      >the following verse, by the person to whom it is supposedly addressed,
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      >
      >
      >namely Peter in 14:29. who speaks to the issue of 14:27, not to the
      >
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      >
      >blockbuster promise of 14:28). Or the intrusiveness of Mk 16:7 (ditto,
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      >
      >
      >mutatis mutandis). At last report, Ron actually accepted these two passages
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      >
      >
      >as intrusive; that is, as not originally part of Mark. Given that starting
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      >
      >
      >point, and agreeing to accept as equally intrusive other passages in Mark
      >
      >
      >
      >with comparable credentials, we rather quickly reach a stratified model for
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      >
      >Mark. Which is what I have done.
      >
      >
      >
      >But suppose we stop with just Mk 14:28 and 16:7. That is the position
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      >
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      >occupied by Frederick C Grant in the Fifties, and by Ron today. To what
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      >
      >position does this acceptance lead us? It leads us to the conclusion that
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      >
      >
      >what these two obviously related interpolations provide was not originally
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      >
      >
      >present in Mark, and that it is their purpose to supply it. What then do
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      >
      >
      >they provide? They provide a prediction of an Appearance of Jesus to his
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      >
      >
      >disciples, not in Jerusalem, but in Galilee. Without those passages, could
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      >
      >
      >we say that Mark envisions an appearance to the disciples in Galilee? Yes,
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      >
      >
      >but rather indirectly, and with the important qualification that the said
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      >
      >Appearance would have been a surprise to the disciples, not an expected and
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      >
      >indeed a promised event.
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      >
      >
      >Two question follow, and then the midweek is over.
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      >
      >1. Given the reality of an appearance of Jesus to his disciples in Galilee,
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      >
      >
      >is there any other text besides Mark (that is, Mark without these two
      >
      >
      >
      >interpolations) which agrees in making that event a surprise to the
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      >
      >
      >disciples? Yes, the Gospel of Peter, where the disciples go fishing, rather
      >
      >
      >
      >than setting out to see Jesus. Of course the Gospel breaks off at an
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      >
      >
      >unfortunate place, but that much can be firmly said. Still firmer is the
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      >
      >
      >version of that tale which was added to the otherwise finished Gospel of
      >
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      >
      >John, as Jn 21 (the original Gospel ended at Jn 20). Here the story is
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      >
      >complete, not interrupted, and again, the disciples are surprised to see
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      >
      >Jesus, to all intents and purposes alive again, and cooking fish for lunch.
      >
      >
      >
      >Then several attested and recoverable traditions portray the appearance of
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      >
      >Jesus in Galilee as unexpected, and those traditions (given the interpolated
      >
      >
      >
      >nature of the predictions in Mark) are earlier than the others.
      >
      >
      >
      >2. Why were the interpolations added? Those with an essay of their own may
      >
      >
      >
      >contribute it, either to this list or to Princeton, where it counts toward
      >
      >
      >
      >AP Reading. But in the meantime I would say, they were added to avoid the
      >
      >
      >
      >impression that anything important in the life of Jesus was a surprise to
      >
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      >
      >Jesus; to give him divine foreknowledge of every part of it. And is there
      >
      >
      >
      >any other sign of such a preference or tendency? Yes, see again the
      >
      >
      >
      >Trajectory Arguments. I should think that this one tiny detail is part of
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      >
      >
      >the long process of the divinization of Jesus, one aspect of which is the
      >
      >
      >
      >increasing omniscience of Jesus in the later texts. Is that development
      >
      >
      >
      >intelligible in general historical, or history-of-religion terms? Nothing
      >
      >
      >
      >more so; it is how movement founders, whether religious or otherwise, are
      >
      >
      >
      >very commonly seen by their later followers, and the later the followers,
      >
      >
      >
      >the more complete the divinization (or its secular equivalent,
      >
      >
      >
      >legendarization).
      >
      >
      >
      >So the first position in Mark, that Jesus did not predict his own Appearance
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      >
      >
      >in Galilee, is on general as well as philological principles likely to be
      >
      >
      >
      >earlier than the one to which the two interpolated passages lead us. If so,
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      >
      >
      >then Mark contains within it two stages in its own evolution, and those
      >
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      >
      >stages can be recognized by anyone (not necessarily Frederick C Grant,
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      >
      >
      >though that probably helps) who can see the signs of inconcinnity in the
      >
      >
      >
      >passages in question.
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      >
      >
      >I think it is thus manifest, even from this tiny example - the common
      >
      >
      >
      >ground, as far as I know, between Ron and myself - that Mark contains more
      >
      >
      >
      >than one stratum of material, and that the earlier stratum is different from
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      >
      >
      >the later stratum in doctrinally consequential ways. The question is whether
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      >
      >
      >that fact is general rather than isolated, and whether, isolated or not, it
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      >
      >
      >leads anywhere. My answer to both is Yes.
      >
      >
      >
      >Bruce
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      >
      >
      >E Bruce Brooks
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      >
      >
      >University of Massachusetts at Amherst
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      >
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      >------------------------------------
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      >Synoptic-L homepage: http://NTGateway.com/synoptic-lYahoo! Groups Links
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      >------------------------------------
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      >Synoptic-L homepage: http://NTGateway.com/synoptic-lYahoo! Groups Links
      >
      >
      >

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    • Ronald Price
      ... Jeff, Indeed, Paul himself apparently claimed to have performed signs and wonders, though it should be noted in regard to the latter reference above, which
      Message 50 of 50 , Nov 10, 2011
      • 0 Attachment
        Jeff Peterson wrote:

        > ..... while Paul doesn't mention signs
        > and wonders performed by Jesus, he does regard signs and wonders as marking
        > apostles of the risen Christ (Rom 15:18–19; 2 Cor 12:12).

        Jeff,

        Indeed, Paul himself apparently claimed to have performed signs and wonders,
        though it should be noted in regard to the latter reference above, which is
        Paul's strongest statement on the subject, that the context is his desperate
        desire to present himself as a true apostle. Also he was somewhat agitated
        (2 Cor 12:11).

        But unfortunately none of the four claims to deeds of power (your two plus 1
        Thess 1:5 and 1 Cor 2:4) are accompanied by details. Consequently we can't
        be sure what Paul meant, and there is at least the possibility that he was
        referring to the drama of mass conversions which this persuasive missionary
        no doubt initiated.

        > It wouldn't be a great leap to suppose that Paul had heard reports from
        > Cephas, James, et al. of signs and wonders performed by Christ .....

        But this is nothing more than a supposition, and its perceived likelihood
        depends on whether or not we consider (on other grounds) that Jesus was a
        miracle worker.

        So I still maintain that our only independent witness to Jesus as a miracle
        worker is the gospel of Mark.

        Ron Price,

        Derbyshire, UK

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