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Re: Israelites

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  • RSBrenchley@aol.com
    The Davidic lineage in Matthew s Gospel no doubt evolved as a weapon to counter the historical rejection of Jesus kingship . The Judean honorific Son of
    Message 1 of 2 , Jul 17, 2002
      The Davidic lineage in Matthew's Gospel no doubt
      evolved as a weapon to counter the historical
      rejection of Jesus' "kingship". The Judean honorific
      "Son of David", on the other hand, may have some
      historical roots, though I think Jesus probably hated
      being called that, since his messiahship was more
      prophetic than kingly. In fact, Bill Herzog has
      persuasively argued that the parable of the Unmerciful
      Servant (Mt 18:23-34), in particular, is a slam on
      Davidic pretenders (Athronges of Judea, Simon bar
      Giora, etc).

      The mocking honorific on the cross -- "King of the
      Judeans" -- simply broadcast how Rome would deal with
      any messiah who had pretensions (whether real or
      perceived) to rule in her place. From this standpoint,
      it made little difference that Jesus was a Galilean
      and not a Judean. The demonstration in the temple and
      the eucharist-event took place in Judea; and that's
      where the crucifixion happened, with plenty of Judeans
      watching.

      Loren Rosson III
      Nashua NH
      rossoiii@...

      Even if Jesus really was of Davidic descent, he's still strongly
      associated with Galilee. It can't be assumed that he would automatically have
      identified himself with Judea, or even that he would have had any clear
      personal identification with one versus the other. If brother James settled
      in Jerusalem, and became important enough for his death to lead to the
      removal of the High Priest, that suggests a pretty clear identification with
      Judea, but Jesus looks a lot more ambiguous. He was clearly concerned with
      the Temple, which might suggest a Judean identification, but on the other
      hand it might be more of a concern with the honour of God. Amos seems to have
      been a southerner, but that didn't prevent his spat with Amaziah, which I
      always feel has something in common with JC's reputed attack on the Temple.
      The lack of any clear distinction between Judean and Galilean perhaps
      suggests that there wasn't too much difference between them.

      Regards,

      Robert Brenchley
      RSBrenchley@...
      Birmingham UK
    • David C. Hindley
      ... counter the historical rejection of Jesus kingship . The Judean honorific Son of David , on the other hand, may have some historical roots, though I
      Message 2 of 2 , Jul 17, 2002
        Loren Rossen III said:

        >>The Davidic lineage in Matthew's Gospel no doubt evolved as a weapon to
        counter the historical
        rejection of Jesus' "kingship". The Judean honorific "Son of David", on the
        other hand, may have some historical roots, though I think Jesus probably
        hated being called that, since his messiahship was more prophetic than
        kingly.<<

        Doesn't this assume something to be proved? How is the phrase "honorific?"
        Do we have examples from this general period of *anyone* else being called a
        "son of David" as an honorific title? At least I am not aware of any,
        although I dimly recall that someone on a list I monitor once said that the
        term was applied in an honorific sense either around the 4th century (during
        the heyday of the Jewish patriarchate) or possibly medieval times.

        Still, I find it hard to accept that the early Church would have attributed
        the lineage of David to Jesus as a means of validating his "kingship" when
        the gospel writers felt obligated to explain (away) the fact that the Romans
        erected a humiliating sign over the crucified Jesus to mock him as an
        unsuccessful contender to a "Jewish" throne. It would seem more likely that
        Davidic lineage was at very least popularly accorded to him (although at
        least one early Christian author speaks of Jesus' relatives as if they
        claimed Davidic lineage), and that the early Church felt obligated to admit
        it while simultaneously trying to file off the rough edges ("Honest, your
        honor, it is a spiritual kingdom he is king of ... ").

        >>In fact, Bill Herzog has persuasively argued that the parable of the
        Unmerciful Servant (Mt 18:23-34), in particular, is a slam on Davidic
        pretenders (Athronges of Judea, Simon bar Giora, etc).<<

        This has to be no better than a guess, as we know next to nothing about the
        behavior of these "pretenders" and their support organizations (and there
        *must* have been some supporters). Even calling them "pretenders" is
        presumptious. As far as I can recall, no Davidic lineage is suggested by
        Josephus WRT these contenders (a better term) for the throne. The level of
        wealth (10,000 talents) is more in line with that of the Roman "housesholds"
        that controlled the empire. There, especially in the imperial household,
        incredible wealth was controlled by slaves and freedmen.

        Respectfully,

        Dave Hindley
        Cleveland, Ohio, USA
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