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Re: [XTalk] Jesus' "Temptation" & "baptism"

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  • Karel Hanhart
    Thank you Tim for your reply. Let me first of all correct an unfortunate and confusing spelling mistake. I wrote (Matthew would except this new
    Message 1 of 81 , Mar 8 3:01 AM
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      Thank you Tim for your reply. Let me first of all correct an unfortunate and
      confusing spelling mistake. I wrote "(Matthew would except this new
      interpretation)". That must be "(Matthew would accept this new
      interpretation)". This correction of the spelling may clarify my response
      to your questions, which I will try to answer below seriatim.

      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Timothy E. Kennelly" <timothykennelly@...>
      To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Sunday, March 06, 2005 1:48 AM
      Subject: Re: [XTalk] Jesus' "Temptation" & "baptism"


      >
      >
      >
      > Dr. Hanhart has written:

      >> Jeffrey,
      >>
      >> Below you ask, "But the real question is what
      >> > justifies the evangelists (including Mark) in seeing that this
      > event in
      >> > terms of a
      >> > recapitulation of Israel's wilderness experience. Did this idea
      > come from
      >> > Jesus?"
      >> That question was for years in my mind.
      >> The justification lies, in my opinion, in the unique genre Gospel.
      > Is it a
      >> "bios" or Hellenistic biography or is it a Christian Judean
      > Passover
      >> Haggadah? To me Mark wrote (in veiled language) a Passover
      > Haggadah or
      >> homily, if you will, for internal use of the ecclesia for their
      > annual
      >> celebration of the week of Pesach and the following Pentecost. It
      > was not
      >> meant for the general public.
      >> In pre-70 years Christians in the Land and in the diaspora had
      > celebrated
      >> Pesach some 40 years with the required readings from the Torah and
      > the
      >> prophets and Psalms. But they had also developed a tradition of
      > interpreting
      >> these Tenach passages in the light of Jesus "remembered",
      > especially new
      >> Christian version of the Pesach meal. By the time the Judean
      > rebellion began
      >> these traditions had jelled into a written document read to be used
      > in the
      >> ecclesia for the Passover season.
      >> After the traumatic news - am earthquake experience for the Judean
      > nation -
      >> Mark decided to rewrite this document. The parousia expectation (
      > the focus
      >> of their Passover in pre-70 years) was greatly tempered, the delay
      > of the
      >> parousia had to be explained. However, Mark REWROTE or radically
      > revised
      >> this known Christian Judean Pesach document in such a way that a
      > new post-70
      >> interpretation of the passion story was offered taking the
      > destruction of
      >> the temple into account. (Matthew would except this new
      > interpretation). The
      >> REWRITING didn't prevent Mark, however, from retaining the
      >> Exodus-Wilderness- Entry motifs into his story, and the
      > correspondences and
      >> differences he saw with the Entry in the Land as described in the
      > book of
      >> Joshua (Bowman).
      >> Thus my answer to you question is "no, this idea did not come from
      > Jesus".
      >> Mark did not write a biography. It stems from the Christian Judean
      > Passover
      >> liturgy as it surely developed in the forty years prior to the
      > debacle of
      >> 70, which Mark drastically revised.
      >>
      >
      > Dr. Hanhart,
      >
      > I am not a specialist and I have not read your book, although I am
      > tempted. (Please, do read it. KH)
      > Your thesis seems quite plausible, save the suggestion that the text
      > was never intended for a larger audience. A number of questions
      > present themselves here:
      >
      > 1) If the text is never intended for a larger audience why do we find
      > narrative in it? Why doesn't the work read like a collection of
      > prayers or psalms?

      As I see it, Mark may well have selected those passages in the pre-70
      document that he felt needed to be rewritten and thus retain some narrative,
      especially parables of the harvest (ch 4) and sayings of the future (ch 13).
      Moreover, I doubt very much that this unknown pre-70 document had been
      written in the FORM of a Greek tragedy. Although Mark's rewriting was meant
      for the Pesach season in his own ecclesia, he chose a new form, the known
      form of a tragedy, in keeping with the disaster that had befallen his
      nation - His Judean and non-Judean readers would be familiar with such
      tragedies, performed in the stadion. Like any tragedy Mark too has a
      prologue introducing the main protagonists, a development of the main theme
      (8,3; 9,31; 1033f.) a climax (the passion story) and an epilogue. However,
      as CONTENT is concerned, it was meant to be read in his ecclesia.

      > 2) How is it that for ~2000 years so many people have taken the book
      > for a narrative biography, and you seem to admit that you were
      > troubled with the text for many years yourself before you offered your
      > solution. Does this not suggest that the text is intended to be
      > understood as a narrative when in fact it is not?

      a) Reading the Gospels as a narrative was due (among other reasons) to
      Matthew and Luke who begin their Gospels with a story on the birth of Jesus.
      b) Moreover, in the second century the memory of the trauma of 70 had
      subsided;
      c) The non-Judeans began to form the majority in the ecclesia. They were
      unfamiliar with Judean midrash and the various festivals such as Pesach and
      Shanuoth. Thus they would no longer recognize or be interested in the
      original Judean context of the Gospel.
      d) The tendency within early christianity was away from the Judean tradition
      through their own re-interpretation of Tenach. This drifting away was
      hastened because many Judeans at first sympathetic to the ecclesia would
      have returned to the synagogue during the second (socalled 'dark') century.
      Cf 1 John 2:19. The diastasis of synagogue and ecclesia was accompanied by
      deep feelings on both sides (one may compare it somewhat with the diastasis
      within the Christian church at the time of the Reformation).

      > 3) What does one find in the text which must not be made public?

      a) Mark contains an implicit, veiled and WRITTEN accusation of the
      oppressive Roman regime in a time where he and his fellow believers
      sustained themselves persecution. Writing this Gospel was a dangerous act,
      as anyone who lived in an occupied country will testify. On the other hand
      the Gospel was attractive to other oppressed sections of the population.
      b) This is true, in particular because of Mark's story of the crucifixion of
      an innocent person by the appointed Roman ruler, Pilate.

      > 4) Why has the text been so sucessful with a larger audience?

      See above under 3b.

      I further believe Mark (perhaps already a refugeer in Aleandria) wrote for
      the ecclesia in Rome. His document went the way of all early Christian
      documents. They were sent to other ecclesia's in the diaspora. As I put it,
      Mark soon sent a copy of his revised passover homily to Matthew's ecclesia
      for his approval. (Did Matthew lead the exiled mother ecclesia of
      Jerusalem?) Matthew's ecclesia evidently 'accepted' (which is the official
      terminology) this new post- 70 interpretation of Pesach and Shabuoth that
      had been sent to them from Mark, Peter's 'ínterpreter' from Rome. I believe
      Simon Peter was the acknowledged leading disciple/apostle. Matthew would
      expand and correct Mark, but he RETAINED almost all of Mark's Gospel. Thus
      Matthew would write the definitive Christian Judean Gospel.

      > 5) If the text is not for a larger audience why does Mark
      > employ "veiled language." What is he hiding? Why is he hiding it?
      > From whom is it being hidden?

      a) In his new composition Mark must make clear that while 'Jesus, son of
      God' knew all along what disasters would ultimately befall his people, his
      audience at large including his disciples were deaf and blind for the
      ominous signs of that future disaster and the manner in which JHWH would
      turn that evil to good: the preaching of the Gospel to the nations. That is
      the purpose for the socalled phenomenon óf the Messianic Secret.

      b) A second reason I already made clear under your number 3.

      This concludes my response.

      > I will appreciate your thoughts.
      >
      > Warmest Regards,
      >
      > Tim Kennelly MS Physicist
      > Norfolk General Hospital
      > Virginia USA
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > The XTalk Home Page is http://ntgateway.com/xtalk/
      >
      > To subscribe to Xtalk, send an e-mail to:
      > crosstalk2-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
      >
      > To unsubscribe, send an e-mail to: crosstalk2-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
      >
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      > crosstalk2-owners@yahoogroups.com
      >
      >
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      >
      >
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    • Karel Hanhart
      Thank you Tim for your reply. Let me first of all correct an unfortunate and confusing spelling mistake. I wrote (Matthew would except this new
      Message 81 of 81 , Mar 8 3:01 AM
      • 0 Attachment
        Thank you Tim for your reply. Let me first of all correct an unfortunate and
        confusing spelling mistake. I wrote "(Matthew would except this new
        interpretation)". That must be "(Matthew would accept this new
        interpretation)". This correction of the spelling may clarify my response
        to your questions, which I will try to answer below seriatim.

        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "Timothy E. Kennelly" <timothykennelly@...>
        To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Sunday, March 06, 2005 1:48 AM
        Subject: Re: [XTalk] Jesus' "Temptation" & "baptism"


        >
        >
        >
        > Dr. Hanhart has written:

        >> Jeffrey,
        >>
        >> Below you ask, "But the real question is what
        >> > justifies the evangelists (including Mark) in seeing that this
        > event in
        >> > terms of a
        >> > recapitulation of Israel's wilderness experience. Did this idea
        > come from
        >> > Jesus?"
        >> That question was for years in my mind.
        >> The justification lies, in my opinion, in the unique genre Gospel.
        > Is it a
        >> "bios" or Hellenistic biography or is it a Christian Judean
        > Passover
        >> Haggadah? To me Mark wrote (in veiled language) a Passover
        > Haggadah or
        >> homily, if you will, for internal use of the ecclesia for their
        > annual
        >> celebration of the week of Pesach and the following Pentecost. It
        > was not
        >> meant for the general public.
        >> In pre-70 years Christians in the Land and in the diaspora had
        > celebrated
        >> Pesach some 40 years with the required readings from the Torah and
        > the
        >> prophets and Psalms. But they had also developed a tradition of
        > interpreting
        >> these Tenach passages in the light of Jesus "remembered",
        > especially new
        >> Christian version of the Pesach meal. By the time the Judean
        > rebellion began
        >> these traditions had jelled into a written document read to be used
        > in the
        >> ecclesia for the Passover season.
        >> After the traumatic news - am earthquake experience for the Judean
        > nation -
        >> Mark decided to rewrite this document. The parousia expectation (
        > the focus
        >> of their Passover in pre-70 years) was greatly tempered, the delay
        > of the
        >> parousia had to be explained. However, Mark REWROTE or radically
        > revised
        >> this known Christian Judean Pesach document in such a way that a
        > new post-70
        >> interpretation of the passion story was offered taking the
        > destruction of
        >> the temple into account. (Matthew would except this new
        > interpretation). The
        >> REWRITING didn't prevent Mark, however, from retaining the
        >> Exodus-Wilderness- Entry motifs into his story, and the
        > correspondences and
        >> differences he saw with the Entry in the Land as described in the
        > book of
        >> Joshua (Bowman).
        >> Thus my answer to you question is "no, this idea did not come from
        > Jesus".
        >> Mark did not write a biography. It stems from the Christian Judean
        > Passover
        >> liturgy as it surely developed in the forty years prior to the
        > debacle of
        >> 70, which Mark drastically revised.
        >>
        >
        > Dr. Hanhart,
        >
        > I am not a specialist and I have not read your book, although I am
        > tempted. (Please, do read it. KH)
        > Your thesis seems quite plausible, save the suggestion that the text
        > was never intended for a larger audience. A number of questions
        > present themselves here:
        >
        > 1) If the text is never intended for a larger audience why do we find
        > narrative in it? Why doesn't the work read like a collection of
        > prayers or psalms?

        As I see it, Mark may well have selected those passages in the pre-70
        document that he felt needed to be rewritten and thus retain some narrative,
        especially parables of the harvest (ch 4) and sayings of the future (ch 13).
        Moreover, I doubt very much that this unknown pre-70 document had been
        written in the FORM of a Greek tragedy. Although Mark's rewriting was meant
        for the Pesach season in his own ecclesia, he chose a new form, the known
        form of a tragedy, in keeping with the disaster that had befallen his
        nation - His Judean and non-Judean readers would be familiar with such
        tragedies, performed in the stadion. Like any tragedy Mark too has a
        prologue introducing the main protagonists, a development of the main theme
        (8,3; 9,31; 1033f.) a climax (the passion story) and an epilogue. However,
        as CONTENT is concerned, it was meant to be read in his ecclesia.

        > 2) How is it that for ~2000 years so many people have taken the book
        > for a narrative biography, and you seem to admit that you were
        > troubled with the text for many years yourself before you offered your
        > solution. Does this not suggest that the text is intended to be
        > understood as a narrative when in fact it is not?

        a) Reading the Gospels as a narrative was due (among other reasons) to
        Matthew and Luke who begin their Gospels with a story on the birth of Jesus.
        b) Moreover, in the second century the memory of the trauma of 70 had
        subsided;
        c) The non-Judeans began to form the majority in the ecclesia. They were
        unfamiliar with Judean midrash and the various festivals such as Pesach and
        Shanuoth. Thus they would no longer recognize or be interested in the
        original Judean context of the Gospel.
        d) The tendency within early christianity was away from the Judean tradition
        through their own re-interpretation of Tenach. This drifting away was
        hastened because many Judeans at first sympathetic to the ecclesia would
        have returned to the synagogue during the second (socalled 'dark') century.
        Cf 1 John 2:19. The diastasis of synagogue and ecclesia was accompanied by
        deep feelings on both sides (one may compare it somewhat with the diastasis
        within the Christian church at the time of the Reformation).

        > 3) What does one find in the text which must not be made public?

        a) Mark contains an implicit, veiled and WRITTEN accusation of the
        oppressive Roman regime in a time where he and his fellow believers
        sustained themselves persecution. Writing this Gospel was a dangerous act,
        as anyone who lived in an occupied country will testify. On the other hand
        the Gospel was attractive to other oppressed sections of the population.
        b) This is true, in particular because of Mark's story of the crucifixion of
        an innocent person by the appointed Roman ruler, Pilate.

        > 4) Why has the text been so sucessful with a larger audience?

        See above under 3b.

        I further believe Mark (perhaps already a refugeer in Aleandria) wrote for
        the ecclesia in Rome. His document went the way of all early Christian
        documents. They were sent to other ecclesia's in the diaspora. As I put it,
        Mark soon sent a copy of his revised passover homily to Matthew's ecclesia
        for his approval. (Did Matthew lead the exiled mother ecclesia of
        Jerusalem?) Matthew's ecclesia evidently 'accepted' (which is the official
        terminology) this new post- 70 interpretation of Pesach and Shabuoth that
        had been sent to them from Mark, Peter's 'ínterpreter' from Rome. I believe
        Simon Peter was the acknowledged leading disciple/apostle. Matthew would
        expand and correct Mark, but he RETAINED almost all of Mark's Gospel. Thus
        Matthew would write the definitive Christian Judean Gospel.

        > 5) If the text is not for a larger audience why does Mark
        > employ "veiled language." What is he hiding? Why is he hiding it?
        > From whom is it being hidden?

        a) In his new composition Mark must make clear that while 'Jesus, son of
        God' knew all along what disasters would ultimately befall his people, his
        audience at large including his disciples were deaf and blind for the
        ominous signs of that future disaster and the manner in which JHWH would
        turn that evil to good: the preaching of the Gospel to the nations. That is
        the purpose for the socalled phenomenon óf the Messianic Secret.

        b) A second reason I already made clear under your number 3.

        This concludes my response.

        > I will appreciate your thoughts.
        >
        > Warmest Regards,
        >
        > Tim Kennelly MS Physicist
        > Norfolk General Hospital
        > Virginia USA
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > The XTalk Home Page is http://ntgateway.com/xtalk/
        >
        > To subscribe to Xtalk, send an e-mail to:
        > crosstalk2-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
        >
        > To unsubscribe, send an e-mail to: crosstalk2-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
        >
        > List managers may be contacted directly at:
        > crosstalk2-owners@yahoogroups.com
        >
        >
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
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