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Sabbath and Circumcision

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  • Ernest Pennells
    The Gospels provide ample evidence that Sabbath was a high profile issue between Jesus and his antagonists. It stands alongside sharing table with tax
    Message 1 of 14 , Apr 8, 2005
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      The Gospels provide ample evidence that Sabbath was a high profile issue
      between Jesus and his antagonists. It stands alongside sharing table with
      tax collectors and sinners as a major point of conflict. Any polemic that
      might attach to Jesus resting in the tomb throughout a Sabbath would appear
      to soften the issue by a demonstration of compliance. Apart from an oblique
      reference to observing Sabbaths, there is no indication of this being an
      issue in the NT church. That is odd because, as Gentiles joined the ranks,
      this would seem to offer no less a flash-point than the highly contentious
      issue of circumcision.

      That circumcision is not an issue in the Gospels is hardly surprising. The
      only references relate to the birth of JBap and Jesus, and an argument that
      circumcision is one form of work accepted on the Sabbath. Circumcision is
      clearly an interface issue between Jew and Gentile converts. Sabbath also
      has that potential, but is presented as an internal Jewish issue on levels
      of observance. Jesus did not assault Sabbath with anything like the venom
      attributed to Paul regarding circumcision. His recorded habit of attending
      synagogue on the Sabbath is another token of compliance.

      From this textual evidence, it might be argued that the NT portrays an
      assault upon two pillars of Judaism: Sabbath and circumcision. This
      certainly has a legitimate ring when Judaism is viewed from a Gentile
      perspective, where Sabbath and circumcision stand out as distinctive
      features that clash with Gentile praxis. The odd thing is that Sabbath is
      portrayed as a major issue for Jesus, but not for the nascent church; but
      circumcision is portrayed as a major issue for the church, but not for
      Jesus. This appears to run counter to the argument that Gospel tradition
      reflects concerns of the church at the time the Gospels were written.

      I am puzzled by the dichotomy between the prominence of Sabbath in the
      Gospels, and its conspicuous absence later. Any suggestions?

      Regards,

      Ernie Pennells
      Samaa el Maadi Tower No 2B
      Level 12 Apartment 4
      28 Corniche el Nil
      Cairo, Egypt
      Tel: (20-2)526 6383 Mobile 0121001490
      http://www.trafford.com/4dcgi/robots/03-1982.html
    • John C. Poirier
      Thanks you, Ernie, for this interesting message. ... but not for the nascent church; But perhaps sabbath observance is included in Paul s reference to
      Message 2 of 14 , Apr 8, 2005
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        Thanks you, Ernie, for this interesting message.

        Ernest Pennells wrote:

        > The odd thing is that Sabbath is portrayed as a major issue for Jesus,
        but not for the nascent church;

        But perhaps sabbath observance is included in Paul's reference to observing
        "days, and months, and times, and years" (Gal 4:10).

        > . . . This appears to run counter to the argument that Gospel tradition
        > reflects concerns of the church at the time the Gospels were written.

        I think that a sabbath controversy within the church shows through in John's
        gospel: in the healing of the lame man at the Pool of Bethesda (in chap. 5)
        and the man born blind (in chap. 9), the sabbath is an issue, and if you
        look closely, you'll see that it isn't that Jesus healed on the sabbath (as
        is the issue in the synoptics) but rather that he commanded those whom he
        healed to break the sabbath, either by carrying a pallet or washing one's
        eyes in a particular pool (whether washing the eyes was against sabbath
        regulations is admittedly a clouded issue, as rabbinic texts show that there
        was a wide range of opinions about how much bathing was permitted on the
        sabbath). If we consider this in the light of J. L. Martyn's stereoscopic
        hermeneutic (as I believe we should), it would seem to imply that the
        Johannine church was fighting against a group insisting on sabbath
        observance.


        John C. Poirier
        Middletown, Ohio
      • Liz Williams
        ... Yes, and also Some judge one day to be better than another, while others judge all days to be alike , in Rom 14:5. I also wonder whether there is not some
        Message 3 of 14 , Apr 8, 2005
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          "John C. Poirier" <poirier@...> wrote:

          > But perhaps sabbath observance is included in Paul's
          > reference to
          > observing
          > "days, and months, and times, and years" (Gal 4:10).

          Yes, and also "Some judge one day to be better than another,
          while others judge all days to be alike", in Rom 14:5. I
          also wonder whether there is not some trace of a dispute
          about sabbath observance in Heb 4:9 (where it is clearly
          not the main point of the passage, however.)

          Liz Williams
          Open University

          --
          The lullaby is the spell whereby the mother attempts to
          transform herself back from an ogre to a saint. - James
          Fenton
        • Ian E. Rock
          Ernest: Would you not have to add a third to these - the issue of diet, which is common to the Gospels, Acts and the Pauline corpus? Ian ...
          Message 4 of 14 , Apr 8, 2005
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            Ernest:
            Would you not have to add a third to these - the issue
            of diet, which is common to the Gospels, Acts and the
            Pauline corpus?
            Ian

            --- Ernest Pennells <pennells@...> wrote:
            >
            > The Gospels provide ample evidence that Sabbath was
            > a high profile issue
            > between Jesus and his antagonists. It stands
            > alongside sharing table with
            > tax collectors and sinners as a major point of
            > conflict. Any polemic that
            > might attach to Jesus resting in the tomb throughout
            > a Sabbath would appear
            > to soften the issue by a demonstration of
            > compliance. Apart from an oblique
            > reference to observing Sabbaths, there is no
            > indication of this being an
            > issue in the NT church. That is odd because, as
            > Gentiles joined the ranks,
            > this would seem to offer no less a flash-point than
            > the highly contentious
            > issue of circumcision.
            >
            > That circumcision is not an issue in the Gospels is
            > hardly surprising. The
            > only references relate to the birth of JBap and
            > Jesus, and an argument that
            > circumcision is one form of work accepted on the
            > Sabbath. Circumcision is
            > clearly an interface issue between Jew and Gentile
            > converts. Sabbath also
            > has that potential, but is presented as an internal
            > Jewish issue on levels
            > of observance. Jesus did not assault Sabbath with
            > anything like the venom
            > attributed to Paul regarding circumcision. His
            > recorded habit of attending
            > synagogue on the Sabbath is another token of
            > compliance.
            >
            > From this textual evidence, it might be argued that
            > the NT portrays an
            > assault upon two pillars of Judaism: Sabbath and
            > circumcision. This
            > certainly has a legitimate ring when Judaism is
            > viewed from a Gentile
            > perspective, where Sabbath and circumcision stand
            > out as distinctive
            > features that clash with Gentile praxis. The odd
            > thing is that Sabbath is
            > portrayed as a major issue for Jesus, but not for
            > the nascent church; but
            > circumcision is portrayed as a major issue for the
            > church, but not for
            > Jesus. This appears to run counter to the argument
            > that Gospel tradition
            > reflects concerns of the church at the time the
            > Gospels were written.
            >
            > I am puzzled by the dichotomy between the prominence
            > of Sabbath in the
            > Gospels, and its conspicuous absence later. Any
            > suggestions?
            >
            > Regards,
            >
            > Ernie Pennells
            > Samaa el Maadi Tower No 2B
            > Level 12 Apartment 4
            > 28 Corniche el Nil
            > Cairo, Egypt
            > Tel: (20-2)526 6383 Mobile 0121001490
            > http://www.trafford.com/4dcgi/robots/03-1982.html
            >
            >



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          • Ernest Pennells
            [John Poirier] ... days, and months, and times, and years (Gal 4:10).
            Message 5 of 14 , Apr 8, 2005
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              [John Poirier]
              >But perhaps sabbath observance is included in Paul's reference to observing
              "days, and months, and times, and years" (Gal 4:10).<

              [Liz Williams]
              >Yes, and also "Some judge one day to be better than another, while others
              judge all days to be alike", in Rom 14:5.<

              Agreed, but I am not aware of any record of discord comparable with the
              sabbath and circumcision controversies.

              [John Poirier]
              >it isn't that Jesus healed on the sabbath ... but rather that he commanded
              those whom he healed to break the sabbath,... If we consider this in the
              light of J. L. Martyn's stereoscopic hermeneutic (as I believe we should),
              it would seem to imply that the Johannine church was fighting against a
              group insisting on sabbath observance.<

              Stereoscopic hermeneutic sounds like fun, John - does it come with coloured
              glasses? :-). Seriously, though, given the strength of the discord around
              sabbath and circumcision, I am amazed that we don't have direct evidence of
              disputes around the sabbath issue [to my knowledge: have I missed
              something?].

              [Ian Rock]
              >Would you not have to add a third to these - the issue of diet, which is
              common to the Gospels, Acts and the Pauline corpus?<

              Peter's vision; the domical saying about not being defiled by what enters
              the body; and, possibly, table fellowship issues certainly show there was
              disagreement on this front. But, again, somewhat low-key compared with
              S&C.

              Let's face it: sabbath was a rather more visible issue than circumcision -
              how did it not generate a rift? The stance attributed to Jesus in the
              canonical Gospels might easily have become like fuel to the fire for such a
              dispute, although it is hard to believe that the tradition could be taken
              as abrogating the sabbath, in line with the dominical saying that was said
              to declare all food clean.

              Regards,

              Ernie Pennells
              Samaa el Maadi Tower No 2B
              Level 12 Apartment 4
              28 Corniche el Nil
              Cairo, Egypt
              Tel: (20-2)526 6383 Mobile 0121001490
              http://www.trafford.com/4dcgi/robots/03-1982.html
            • Stephen C. Carlson
              ... I agree with you about the chapter 5 healing, but for the healing in chapter 9, I thought the problem escalted to Jesus s alleged violation of the sabbath,
              Message 6 of 14 , Apr 8, 2005
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                At 08:08 AM 4/8/2005 -0400, John C. Poirier wrote:
                >I think that a sabbath controversy within the church shows through in John's
                >gospel: in the healing of the lame man at the Pool of Bethesda (in chap. 5)
                >and the man born blind (in chap. 9), the sabbath is an issue, and if you
                >look closely, you'll see that it isn't that Jesus healed on the sabbath (as
                >is the issue in the synoptics) but rather that he commanded those whom he
                >healed to break the sabbath, either by carrying a pallet or washing one's
                >eyes in a particular pool (whether washing the eyes was against sabbath
                >regulations is admittedly a clouded issue, as rabbinic texts show that there
                >was a wide range of opinions about how much bathing was permitted on the
                >sabbath).

                I agree with you about the chapter 5 healing, but for the healing
                in chapter 9, I thought the problem escalted to Jesus's alleged
                violation of the sabbath, i.e., that Jesus himself made mud on
                the Sabbath. It's repeated over and over again:

                9: 6 "he spat on the ground and made mud with the saliva and spread
                the mud on the man's eyes"
                9:11 "The man called Jesus made mude, spread it on my eyes, and said..."
                9:14 Now it was a sabbath day when Jesus made the mud and opened his
                eyes.
                9:15 "He put mud on my eyes. Then I washed, and now I see."

                Do the rabbinic texts discuss the propriety of making mud on the sabbath?

                (Random thought: Was making mud part of the job that a TEKTWN did?)

                >If we consider this in the light of J. L. Martyn's stereoscopic
                >hermeneutic (as I believe we should), it would seem to imply that the
                >Johannine church was fighting against a group insisting on sabbath
                >observance.

                I'd like to hear more about this hermeneutic. I assume it
                is more than just mirror reading or something.

                Stephen Carlson
                --
                Stephen C. Carlson mailto:scarlson@...
                Weblog: http://www.hypotyposeis.org/weblog/
                "Poetry speaks of aspirations, and songs chant the words." Shujing 2.35
              • John C. Poirier
                ... Well, a few people refer to the prohibition of kneading in this connection (in m. Shab. 7.2), and I ve seen a discussion on which types of anointing were
                Message 7 of 14 , Apr 8, 2005
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                  Stephen C. Carlson wrote:

                  > Do the rabbinic texts discuss the propriety of making mud on the sabbath?

                  Well, a few people refer to the prohibition of kneading in this connection
                  (in m. Shab. 7.2), and I've seen a discussion on which types of anointing
                  were allowed, but I can't answer more specifically at the moment, esp. as I
                  don't have access to my books at the moment.

                  > I'd like to hear more about this hermeneutic. I assume it is more than
                  > just mirror reading or something.

                  I'm afraid I might have used the wrong word. I remember Martyn calling his
                  double-vision hermeneutic (in which one sees both the events of Jesus' day
                  and John's day in a single account) stereo- something or other, but more
                  likely the word he used was "stereoptic" rather than "stereoscopic". The
                  idea of blending two different pictures into one is somewhat the same
                  whichever word it was, but stereoptic is better.

                  At any rate, it simply refers to the idea of correlating narrative details
                  with events in the writer's day rather than with events in Jesus' day.
                  Martyn didn't come up with this hermeneutic (Bultmann had already used it
                  rather well), but he perfected it.


                  John C. Poirier
                  Middletown, Ohio
                • Bob Schacht
                  ... Good thought! Although we normally think of a TEKTWN as a woodworker, construction in that time and place also routinely involved making mudbricks, and it
                  Message 8 of 14 , Apr 8, 2005
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                    At 09:04 AM 4/8/2005, Stephen C. Carlson wrote:

                    >...I agree with you about the chapter 5 healing, but for the healing
                    >in chapter 9, I thought the problem escalted to Jesus's alleged
                    >violation of the sabbath, i.e., that Jesus himself made mud on
                    >the Sabbath. It's repeated over and over again:
                    >
                    >9: 6 "he spat on the ground and made mud with the saliva and spread
                    > the mud on the man's eyes"
                    >9:11 "The man called Jesus made mude, spread it on my eyes, and said..."
                    >9:14 Now it was a sabbath day when Jesus made the mud and opened his
                    > eyes.
                    >9:15 "He put mud on my eyes. Then I washed, and now I see."
                    >
                    >Do the rabbinic texts discuss the propriety of making mud on the sabbath?
                    >
                    >(Random thought: Was making mud part of the job that a TEKTWN did?)

                    Good thought! Although we normally think of a TEKTWN as a woodworker,
                    construction in that time and place also routinely involved making
                    mudbricks, and it is not unreasonable to suppose that making mudbricks was
                    part of a TEKTWN's inventory of job skills. As I know from my own work in
                    the Middle East, the cheapest and most widely used construction material
                    was sun-dried mudbrick, and this has been the case in the Middle East for
                    about the last 6000 years or so. A basic starter-home in a village such as
                    Nazareth would probably have been made with mudbricks. Wood would have been
                    used primarily for trim, e.g. doors and windows. In fact, it may be that
                    the TEKTWN had to be involved with making at least some of the mudbricks,
                    e.g. to set the hinges for a door. (Door hinges would be a whole discussion
                    of its own, since doors were hung rather differently then, but they still
                    required a stable fixed anchor on which to mount, or from which to hang, a
                    movable piece.)

                    Bob in HI



                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Karel Hanhart
                    Ernest, Before one enters the discussion on the strict or lenient observance of the Sabbath itself, one must explain the peculiar use of a) the use of sabbaton
                    Message 9 of 14 , Apr 9, 2005
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                      Ernest,

                      Before one enters the discussion on the strict or lenient observance of the
                      Sabbath itself, one must explain the peculiar use of
                      a) the use of sabbaton in the singular and the plural in Mark; as I see it
                      sabbaton in the plural stands for the seven weeks of Pentecost.
                      b) the important characterization of Mark by Papias 'ou mentoi taxei': Mark
                      did not write in the (liturgical!) order
                      c) the peculiar name 'en miai ton sabbaton' of the Sunday of the women's
                      vision in Mark's ending
                      d) the remarkable connection between 'healings' and 'sabbaton' (singular and
                      plural) in the canonical Gospels.
                      e) why in 'story time' Jesus was buried on the first day of Pentecost
                      according to the Pharisaic calendar (instituted as I calculate under Herod
                      Agrippa, 40-44 CE) and why the angel's message on Jesus'resurrection was
                      heard 'on day ONE OF THE SABBATHS' , meaning on the first day of the
                      Pentecostal harvest.

                      I am eager to know your reactions to my explanation of these points given
                      in the archive in message 18664 on March 24, 2005 (en tois sabbasin) and
                      message 18655 (ou mentoi taxei) also on March 24, 2005.

                      cordially,

                      Karel


                      ----- Original Message -----
                      From: "Ernest Pennells" <pennells@...>
                      To: "XTalk" <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                      Sent: Friday, April 08, 2005 1:28 PM
                      Subject: [XTalk] Sabbath and Circumcision


                      >
                      >
                      > The Gospels provide ample evidence that Sabbath was a high profile issue
                      > between Jesus and his antagonists. It stands alongside sharing table with
                      > tax collectors and sinners as a major point of conflict. Any polemic that
                      > might attach to Jesus resting in the tomb throughout a Sabbath would
                      > appear
                      > to soften the issue by a demonstration of compliance. Apart from an
                      > oblique
                      > reference to observing Sabbaths, there is no indication of this being an
                      > issue in the NT church. That is odd because, as Gentiles joined the
                      > ranks,
                      > this would seem to offer no less a flash-point than the highly contentious
                      > issue of circumcision.
                      >
                      > That circumcision is not an issue in the Gospels is hardly surprising.
                      > The
                      > only references relate to the birth of JBap and Jesus, and an argument
                      > that
                      > circumcision is one form of work accepted on the Sabbath. Circumcision is
                      > clearly an interface issue between Jew and Gentile converts. Sabbath also
                      > has that potential, but is presented as an internal Jewish issue on
                      > levels
                      > of observance. Jesus did not assault Sabbath with anything like the venom
                      > attributed to Paul regarding circumcision. His recorded habit of
                      > attending
                      > synagogue on the Sabbath is another token of compliance.
                      >
                      > From this textual evidence, it might be argued that the NT portrays an
                      > assault upon two pillars of Judaism: Sabbath and circumcision. This
                      > certainly has a legitimate ring when Judaism is viewed from a Gentile
                      > perspective, where Sabbath and circumcision stand out as distinctive
                      > features that clash with Gentile praxis. The odd thing is that Sabbath is
                      > portrayed as a major issue for Jesus, but not for the nascent church;
                      > but
                      > circumcision is portrayed as a major issue for the church, but not for
                      > Jesus. This appears to run counter to the argument that Gospel tradition
                      > reflects concerns of the church at the time the Gospels were written.
                      >
                      > I am puzzled by the dichotomy between the prominence of Sabbath in the
                      > Gospels, and its conspicuous absence later. Any suggestions?
                      >
                      > Regards,
                      >
                      > Ernie Pennells
                      > Samaa el Maadi Tower No 2B
                      > Level 12 Apartment 4
                      > 28 Corniche el Nil
                      > Cairo, Egypt
                      > Tel: (20-2)526 6383 Mobile 0121001490
                      > http://www.trafford.com/4dcgi/robots/03-1982.html
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > 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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                    • Ernest Pennells
                      [Karel Hanhart] ... I regret that I have not kept pace with the intricacies of your arguments along this theme, Karel. With my study resources still stranded
                      Message 10 of 14 , Apr 10, 2005
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                        [Karel Hanhart]
                        >I am eager to know your reactions to my explanation of these points <

                        I regret that I have not kept pace with the intricacies of your arguments
                        along this theme, Karel. With my study resources still stranded in
                        Vancouver I am ill equipped to tackle breaching that gap. Meanwhile I am
                        comfortably paddling in less controversial waters where the events of the
                        Passion are tied to Passover rather than Pentecost, and the record of
                        Jesus' frequent arguments about Sabbath relate to the seventh day of the
                        week. I must leave the debate on the questions you raise in better equipped
                        hands until I am granted an opportunity to catch up on this subject matter.

                        Does your reading of the text yield particular insights regarding the
                        disparity between the prominence of Sabbath conflict in the Gospels, and
                        its relative invisibility in the rest of the NT?

                        Regards,

                        Ernie Pennells
                        Samaa el Maadi Tower No 2B
                        Level 12 Apartment 4
                        28 Corniche el Nil
                        Cairo, Egypt
                        Tel: (20-2)526 6383 Mobile 0121001490
                        http://www.trafford.com/4dcgi/robots/03-1982.html
                      • Karel Hanhart
                        [Ernest] Members of an age old Christian culture and worship, are so used to think of Passover in terms of the triduum: Friday-Saturday- Easter Sunday that
                        Message 11 of 14 , Apr 10, 2005
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                          [Ernest]

                          Members of an age old Christian culture and worship, are so used to think of
                          Passover in terms of the triduum: Friday-Saturday- Easter Sunday that
                          thinking in terms of Pesach in the night of nisan 14/15 (full moon) and
                          Shabuoth (first of the 50 harvest days) is highly confusing to them.
                          Students are constantly confused - especially in Holland since the Dutch
                          word for the Jewish Pesach and for the Christian Easter is the very same
                          word: Pasen. Nevertheless, it is self evident that in pre-70 times
                          Christian Judeans followed the Jewish calendar and farmers brought their
                          "firstlings" to the Temple on what we call Easter Day, that is the Sunday
                          after Pesach (cf. Lev 23,11.15), until the calendar was changed.

                          You write about wanting to "comfortably paddle in less controversial waters
                          where the events of the Passion are tied to Passover rather than Pentecost".

                          I have been writing about the Passion and the (Jewish) Passover in the time
                          of Jesus. I simply point out that Jesus died on Friday, which fell on the
                          day of Passover that year, and that the story of the Supper on Thursday
                          night, was a Christian interpretation of the meaning of Pesach.

                          I truly wonder why you and others consider the indisputable historical
                          difference as CONTROVERSIAL between the PHARISAIC calendar (the first day of
                          the harvest is nisan 16 - the day of the burial story -) and the ANCIENT
                          PRIESTLY calendar (the first day should be the Sunday after Pesach - the day
                          of the women's vision)? The latter was followed by Christian Judeans,
                          Samaritans and Qumranites.

                          I wonder is it controversial because I insist on considering the narrative
                          as a first century (Christian) JEWISH document? Or is it because of my
                          denial of the historicity of the empty tomb because Mark's ending is a
                          midrash on LXX Isa 22,16; 33,126 and Gen 29, 2,3,5? One strange aspect of
                          the so-called controversy is, that the conclusions I derived from the above
                          facts have not been seriously reviewed up till now; they are simply
                          dismissed. My perplexity is genuine, I assure you.
                          As to your last question (below). The disputes in chapters 1, 2 and 3 of
                          Mark should not be called Sabbath controversies, as is often done. They take
                          place within the seven weeks of the harvest (N.B. ch 4) and they describe
                          the astounding and ever widening effect of Jesus' ministry in Galilee and
                          the ever increasing opposition by Jesus' opponents (with a fast forward
                          glance at the later post crucifixion opposition of his followers).
                          Close reading shows that only two Sabbaths (1,21; 3,1) are involved; 'tois
                          sabbasin' in the plural means, I think, during Shabuoth; 1,21 and 4,1 are
                          the last two of the seven Sabbaths of Shabuoth (Pentecost).
                          The Gospel begins and ends on the "first" of the fifty days of Pentecost, a
                          Sunday.

                          cordially

                          Karel




                          ----- Original Message -----
                          From: "Ernest Pennells" <pennells@...>
                          To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                          Sent: Sunday, April 10, 2005 11:10 AM
                          Subject: RE: [XTalk] Sabbath and Circumcision


                          >
                          > [Karel Hanhart]
                          >>I am eager to know your reactions to my explanation of these points <
                          >
                          > I regret that I have not kept pace with the intricacies of your arguments
                          > along this theme, Karel. With my study resources still stranded in
                          > Vancouver I am ill equipped to tackle breaching that gap. Meanwhile I am
                          > comfortably paddling in less controversial waters where the events of the
                          > Passion are tied to Passover rather than Pentecost, and the record of
                          > Jesus' frequent arguments about Sabbath relate to the seventh day of the
                          > week. I must leave the debate on the questions you raise in better
                          > equipped
                          > hands until I am granted an opportunity to catch up on this subject
                          > matter.
                          >
                          > Does your reading of the text yield particular insights regarding the
                          > disparity between the prominence of Sabbath conflict in the Gospels, and
                          > its relative invisibility in the rest of the NT?
                          >
                          > Regards,
                          >
                          > Ernie Pennells
                          > Samaa el Maadi Tower No 2B
                          > Level 12 Apartment 4
                          > 28 Corniche el Nil
                          > Cairo, Egypt
                          > Tel: (20-2)526 6383 Mobile 0121001490
                          > http://www.trafford.com/4dcgi/robots/03-1982.html
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > 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
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                        • Jeffrey B. Gibson
                            ... A very curious claim.  It seems to me to overlook several facts. In the first place, the plural  TA SABBATA was not originally a plural; it is simply
                          Message 12 of 14 , Apr 10, 2005
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                            Karel Hanhart wrote:

                            >  'tois
                            > sabbasin' in the plural means, I think, during Shabuoth;.

                            A very curious claim.  It seems to me to overlook several facts.

                            In the first place, the plural  TA SABBATA was not originally a plural; it is
                            simply the Heb. sáabbaµt or ãabbat --  the "A" is from the outset a purely vocal
                            addition to reproduce the Heb. -t in Gk. (see ” E. Schwyzer, “Altes u. Neues zu
                            [hbr.-]griech. sabbata [griech.-]lat. sabbata usw.,” Zschr. f. vergleichende
                            Sprachforschung, 62 (1935), 10). In practical usage, however, TA SABBATA was then
                            assimilated to the comprehensive plur. of Gk. festivals (see Schwyzer, Griech.
                            Grammatik, II, 43 with n. 5).

                            Secondly,  when we see the noun used in Greek Biblical and related literature in
                            the dative plural -- in either in the form TOIS SABBASIN or in the form TOIS
                            SABBATOIS (the first in 1 Macc. 2:38; Jos.Ant., 13, 337; 16, 163; Vit., 279, the
                            second in Nu. 28:10 LXX; 2 Ch. 2:3 etc.  and also in Jos.Ant., 3, 294; 11, 346;
                            12, 4 and 276 f.; 13, 252; Bell., 1, 146,  it is never used to mean to mean
                            "during Shabuoth"  (see further Str-BilI, 610f.; Pr.-Bauer5, s.v.).

                            Third, the use of the plural of the noun to mean "the Sabbath" is common in Greek
                            Biblical and related literature. See e.g.,  Ex. 20:10;  Jos.Ant., 3, 143. Ant., 1,
                            33; 3, 237; 11, 77.  See too Ex. 20:8 LXX; 35:3: Dt. 5:12; Jer. 17ò21f.; Jos.Ant.,
                            7, 305; 12, 259 and 274; 13, 12; 14, 226  where we find hH hHMERA TWN SABBATWN
                            used for "the Sabbath".

                            So like your claim about what Papias is saying with his OU MENTOI TAXEI (which
                            patently ignores the context in which these words appaer and their referent),  I
                            find this claim about the meaning of TOIS SABBASINanother example of your special
                            pleading.

                            Jeffrey
                            --

                            Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon.)

                            1500 W. Pratt Blvd. #1
                            Chicago, IL 60626

                            jgibson000@...
                             
                          • Karel Hanhart
                            Jeffrey, May I refer you to pp 269 - 298 in particular to note 35 of my The Open Tomb on the critique of Schwyzer s article? In fundamental scholarly
                            Message 13 of 14 , Apr 12, 2005
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                              Jeffrey,


                              May I refer you to pp 269 - 298 in particular to note 35 of my The Open Tomb
                              on the critique of Schwyzer's article? In fundamental scholarly discussion
                              it is customary to at least know the argumentation and conclusions of the
                              partner before critiquing his/her position. Forgive me for being slightly
                              irritated. Are we simply rehashing tired old arguments in this list, or are
                              we informing each other of new research and discuss it?
                              It is easy to check Bauer-Gingrich, Greek Dictionary of the New Testament
                              Literature and then triumphantly cite the article mentioned there [in casu
                              Schwyzer's article in your reply below] in defence of the questionable
                              position taken by that dictionary as the authority on which one bases a
                              reply. Most of us have Bauer's Dictionary on their shelf and it is an easy
                              matter just to cite it. I assume you actually have read that article, have
                              you? But what do you say about my critique of that article?

                              cordially,

                              Karel

                              ----- Original Message -----
                              From: "Jeffrey B. Gibson" <jgibson000@...>
                              To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                              Sent: Monday, April 11, 2005 1:54 AM
                              Subject: Re: [XTalk] Sabbath and Circumcision


                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Karel Hanhart wrote:
                              >
                              >> 'tois
                              >> sabbasin' in the plural means, I think, during Shabuoth;.
                              >
                              > A very curious claim. It seems to me to overlook several facts.
                              >
                              > In the first place, the plural TA SABBATA was not originally a plural; it
                              > is
                              > simply the Heb. sáabbaµt or ãabbat -- the "A" is from the outset a purely
                              > vocal
                              > addition to reproduce the Heb. -t in Gk. (see ” E. Schwyzer, “Altes u.
                              > Neues zu
                              > [hbr.-]griech. sabbata [griech.-]lat. sabbata usw.,” Zschr. f.
                              > vergleichende
                              > Sprachforschung, 62 (1935), 10). In practical usage, however, TA SABBATA
                              > was then
                              > assimilated to the comprehensive plur. of Gk. festivals (see Schwyzer,
                              > Griech.
                              > Grammatik, II, 43 with n. 5).
                              >
                              > Secondly, when we see the noun used in Greek Biblical and related
                              > literature in
                              > the dative plural -- in either in the form TOIS SABBASIN or in the form
                              > TOIS
                              > SABBATOIS (the first in 1 Macc. 2:38; Jos.Ant., 13, 337; 16, 163; Vit.,
                              > 279, the
                              > second in Nu. 28:10 LXX; 2 Ch. 2:3 etc. and also in Jos.Ant., 3, 294; 11,
                              > 346;
                              > 12, 4 and 276 f.; 13, 252; Bell., 1, 146, it is never used to mean to mean
                              > "during Shabuoth" (see further Str-BilI, 610f.; Pr.-Bauer5, s.v.).
                              >
                              > Third, the use of the plural of the noun to mean "the Sabbath" is common
                              > in Greek
                              > Biblical and related literature. See e.g., Ex. 20:10; Jos.Ant., 3, 143.
                              > Ant., 1,
                              > 33; 3, 237; 11, 77. See too Ex. 20:8 LXX; 35:3: Dt. 5:12; Jer. 17ò21f.;
                              > Jos.Ant.,
                              > 7, 305; 12, 259 and 274; 13, 12; 14, 226 where we find hH hHMERA TWN
                              > SABBATWN
                              > used for "the Sabbath".
                              >
                              > So like your claim about what Papias is saying with his OU MENTOI TAXEI
                              > (which
                              > patently ignores the context in which these words appaer and their
                              > referent), I
                              > find this claim about the meaning of TOIS SABBASINanother example of your
                              > special
                              > pleading.
                              >
                              > Jeffrey
                              > --
                              >
                              > Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon.)
                              >
                              > 1500 W. Pratt Blvd. #1
                              > Chicago, IL 60626
                              >
                              > jgibson000@...
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > The XTalk Home Page is http://ntgateway.com/xtalk/
                              >
                              > To subscribe to Xtalk, send an e-mail to:
                              > crosstalk2-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
                              >
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                            • Karel Hanhart
                              Should we not take Mark s clear distinction between sabbaton in the singular (2,27) and sabbata into account? Mark names the day of the women s vision
                              Message 14 of 14 , May 14, 2005
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                                Should we not take Mark's clear distinction between 'sabbaton' in the
                                singular (2,27) and 'sabbata' into account? Mark names the day of the
                                women's vision near the monumental tomb "day one of the sabbaths (16,2
                                plural)." Because this day fell after the day of Passover, Mark must have
                                meant the first day of the Pentecostal harvest that should fall on the
                                Sunday after Passover according to Lev 23,11.15.
                                The emphasis Mark lends to the time-sequence of Good Friday (on Passover
                                Day), and the sharp contrast between the burial at the onset of the Sabbath
                                and the resurrection message on Sunday, can be explained by the sharp
                                contrast between the priestly calendar (cf Leviticus) and the (newly)
                                introduced Pharisaic calendar declaring Nisan 16 (the burial Sabbath) to be
                                the "first day of the harvest". The introduction was most likely forced on
                                the population under Herodes Agrippa I (40-44 CE); it coincided with a
                                severe persecution of the Christian adherents to Jesus (Acts 12,1).
                                Consequently, the 'healing' miracles in the face of disapproving elders,
                                Pharisees and 'Herodians' taking place in chpt 2 and 3, are wrongly labeled
                                "sabbath controversies." The term 'en tois sabbasin' (2,23.24; 3,3 and 4)
                                refers to "the harvest season" (lit. during the period of the seven
                                sabbaths); the healings reflect the beneficial 'harvest' of Jesus'ministry
                                as well as the controversy that arose after the Pharisaic calendar was
                                introduced.
                                The use of the term ''Sabbath" is highly significant and the question why
                                the early community insisted on the 'Sunday' and at the same time continued
                                hallowing the Sabbath is not an easy matter to solve. As we all agree, the
                                exegete is bound to follow Mark's own distinctions and avoid facile
                                explanations circumventing these real problems of the festival calendar.
                                Part of the explanation regarding John using 'sabbaton' (sing) in 5,9.10;
                                9,14.16 is the simple fact that the Pharisaic datings of the seven weeks of
                                Pentecost had been official for some 60 years. Another part of the
                                explanation has to do with John's peculiar dating of the crucifixion and the
                                appearnce to M.Magdalene His Gentile readers would have difficulty to
                                unravel the complications of these time indicators. John simplified the
                                controversy: With the synoptics the days remain on Friday and Sunday and
                                with the Pharisaic dating the appearance to Mary and the eleven on (Sunday)
                                Nisan 16!!

                                cordially,

                                Karel Hanhart


                                ----- Original Message -----
                                From: "Ernest Pennells" <pennells@...>
                                To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                                Sent: Friday, April 08, 2005 8:03 PM
                                Subject: RE: [XTalk] Sabbath and Circumcision


                                >
                                >
                                > [John Poirier]
                                >>But perhaps sabbath observance is included in Paul's reference to
                                >>observing
                                > "days, and months, and times, and years" (Gal 4:10).<
                                >
                                > [Liz Williams]
                                >>Yes, and also "Some judge one day to be better than another, while others
                                > judge all days to be alike", in Rom 14:5.<
                                >
                                > Agreed, but I am not aware of any record of discord comparable with the
                                > sabbath and circumcision controversies.
                                >
                                > [John Poirier]
                                >>it isn't that Jesus healed on the sabbath ... but rather that he commanded
                                > those whom he healed to break the sabbath,... If we consider this in the
                                > light of J. L. Martyn's stereoscopic hermeneutic (as I believe we should),
                                > it would seem to imply that the Johannine church was fighting against a
                                > group insisting on sabbath observance.<
                                >
                                > Stereoscopic hermeneutic sounds like fun, John - does it come with
                                > coloured
                                > glasses? :-). Seriously, though, given the strength of the discord
                                > around
                                > sabbath and circumcision, I am amazed that we don't have direct evidence
                                > of
                                > disputes around the sabbath issue [to my knowledge: have I missed
                                > something?].
                                >
                                > [Ian Rock]
                                >>Would you not have to add a third to these - the issue of diet, which is
                                > common to the Gospels, Acts and the Pauline corpus?<
                                >
                                > Peter's vision; the domical saying about not being defiled by what enters
                                > the body; and, possibly, table fellowship issues certainly show there
                                > was
                                > disagreement on this front. But, again, somewhat low-key compared with
                                > S&C.
                                >
                                > Let's face it: sabbath was a rather more visible issue than
                                > circumcision -
                                > how did it not generate a rift? The stance attributed to Jesus in the
                                > canonical Gospels might easily have become like fuel to the fire for such
                                > a
                                > dispute, although it is hard to believe that the tradition could be taken
                                > as abrogating the sabbath, in line with the dominical saying that was
                                > said
                                > to declare all food clean.
                                >
                                > Regards,
                                >
                                > Ernie Pennells
                                > Samaa el Maadi Tower No 2B
                                > Level 12 Apartment 4
                                > 28 Corniche el Nil
                                > Cairo, Egypt
                                > Tel: (20-2)526 6383 Mobile 0121001490
                                > http://www.trafford.com/4dcgi/robots/03-1982.html
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
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