Re: [XTalk] Re: Messiah in spite of himself
- In a message dated 12/1/2003 12:30:13 PM Central Standard Time,
> This, however, is precisely the situation in which Paul's letters werethat
> written. He wrote to the initiated who already knew Paul's Christ and quite
> knew no other except in passing, with no details. Paul ought to assume
> his readers knew what he was talking about--he proselytized most of them, orBut that's the point isn't it? He DIDN'T proselytize the Roman church which
> knew well those who did.
is what makes this being his one explicit but non-apologetic reference so
intriguing. And given that there was a large contingent of Jews in Rome,
then one might expect there, if anywhere, a diversity of views. On the
contrary, can I suggest that here we have evidence of Christian
community/ies founded by other/s who naturally shared a similar view of the
Davidic origins of the Messiah.
Hence my stipulation that he knew well those who did proselytize Rome. But
it is not only the Davidic origin (which the gospels ensure Jesus had) but the
nature of the Messiah himself that's at question. I wouldn't dispute that
Paul concurred with the notion that Jesus was of the house of David. I do
suggest that those Jews who expected the Messiah did not expect Paul's cosmic
Christ. We are looking at a complete revision of the concept of Messiah here, not
just the particular detail of Davidic origin, which was easily retained.
Further, I'm not sure if your scenario is entirely accurate in other
respects. Peter and Apollos visit Corinth (each presumably with their view
of the ancestry of the Messiah) and according to Acts most of Paul's early
activity begins in Synagogues, the very places where if there was a
diversity of views of the Messiah's ancestry one would expect to find them.
But I can't see any evidence of any kind of debate about whether the Messiah
was to be of Davidic origins or not.
But I'm not interested in the ancestry issue (except insofar as it was
necessary to invent not one but two genealogies for Jesus to meet the requirement).
I'm addressing the variant Christologies that Paul condemns so roundly. But
while we're on the topic: Why would Luke, who is writing propaganda, present
such a debate in the first place? The last thing he wants to do is credit the
opposing (to him, no doubt, heretical) Christian doctrines we find Paul
blasting in his letters.
> Rikk, you do not address the numerous Christological disputes Paul takes upI'm sorry but I must be missing something here. Where exactly does Paul
> in his letters. If there were no variant concepts of Christ afoot, then why
> must Paul spend so much time disputing them?
dispute a view that claims that the Messiah was not Davidic?
As far as I know, he does not. I think you've misunderstood my point, Rikk:
It is the universally salvific nature of Paul's Christ, not the Davidic
descent, that runs contrary to the general expectations of the Judaism of the day.
The Christ Paul proclaims is fundamentally unlike the Messiah upon which
Judaism hung its hope, whether this Christ had a Davidic ancestry or not.
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- Dear Listers,
I had indicated two weeks ago that I would submit my own response to
responses of others re the thread "Messiah in spite of himself" in an
article which Jeffrey Gibson has offered to upload to the Xtalk articles
page. With the demand of other matters, it has taken far longer than I had
envisioned to complete the article. And with the holidays at hand, it
looks like I cannot get this article out until after the first of the year.
I plan in the article not only to deal with matters related to the "Messiah"
thread but also to incorporate in it issues related to the "4Q521" thread
and the "Gospel of Mary Magdalene" thread, which I had introduced.
Happy holidays to you all.