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Re: From the HJ to the historical disciples

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  • Wieland Willker
    ... This sounds reasonable. ... This I think is debatable. It can just as well come from the non-eye-witnesses. Best wishes Wieland
    Message 1 of 6 , Jun 30, 2005
      Joseph Codsi wrote:
      > The eyewitnesses play here a pivotal role. All we know about the historical Jesus is based on their testimony.

      This sounds reasonable.


      > So if there is a discrepancy between what the historical
      > Jesus was and the way he is described in the gospel, they
      > are likely to be responsible for it.

      This I think is debatable. It can just as well come from the non-eye-witnesses.


      Best wishes
      Wieland
      <><
      ------------------------------------------------
      Wieland Willker, Bremen, Germany
      mailto:willker@...-bremen.de
      http://www.uni-bremen.de/~wie
      Textcritical commentary:
      http://www.uni-bremen.de/~wie/TCG/index.html
    • Joseph Codsi
      Reply to Tony Buglass Tony, What you and Wieland Wilker have said is correct. I did not mean to exclude any action by non eyewitnesses, but to include the
      Message 2 of 6 , Jul 2, 2005
        Reply to Tony Buglass

        Tony,

        What you and Wieland Wilker have said is correct. I did not mean to
        exclude any action by non eyewitnesses, but to include the action of
        eyewitnesses in the transformation of historical events. The notion of
        "theological event" illustrates this point.

        Can a midrash be written by an eyewitness? A midrash, it seems to me,
        can only be produced by a non eyewitness and in the midst of a community
        who has specific views as far as political and religious questions are
        concerned. The midrash reflects the condition of place and time in which
        the said community was trying to say itself by redefining its distant
        past.

        A theological event, on the other hand, can be created by an eyewitness.
        In this case, however, the eyewitness will have acted with the knowledge
        that he has altered the historical truth.

        Is there a historical kernel to a theological event? This is possible
        but not necessary. In what pertains to my theory, only the theological
        events that are attributable to the disciples and eyewitnesses are of
        interest. The way Matthew has altered the profession of faith of Peter
        as it had reached him in the Markan version has no importance for my
        theory.

        In what pertains to the gospel, a theological event takes the form of
        inserting a post-Easter view into a pre-Easter context. In order to do
        so, an insertion point is needed. In one case, the insertion point is an
        exorcism. The theological event takes the form of transforming an
        ordinary exorcism into a confrontation between Jesus and the demon, in
        which the unclean spirit reveals Jesus secret identity without paying
        any attention to the stern order to keep silent. In another case, the
        insertion point is the parable of the sower. In what pertains to the
        triple prediction of the Easter event, the insertion point is not clear.
        We must look for it. The second prediction of the resurrection is
        located on a lonely road somewhere in Galilee. The first prediction is
        located on a road in the vicinity of Caesarea Philippi. The third
        prediction is located on the road going up from the Jordan to Jerusalem.
        The physical road symbolizes the spiritual road of initiation. Luke has
        developed the theme of the road in relation to the Christian initiation
        (cf. Lk 24:13-35 and Acts 8:26-40).

        The first prediction is the only one that is associated with another
        event: Peter's profession of faith. The problem is that even Peter's
        profession of faith is a theological event. The only historical event
        that is associated with it is the order to keep silent (which is
        identical to the order Jesus gives to the demons). The first prediction
        of the resurrection, on the other hand, is associated with another
        historical event: the rebuke of Peter.

        In order to understand what is going on here, we must reconstruct the
        historical circumstances in which Jesus rebuked Peter and called him
        "Satan". Right now, I can only notice the dual parallelism between those
        two events and the confrontations with the demons. The disciples
        identified themselves with the demons, and peter is identified with
        Satan. Connections of this nature are very important in my theory. They
        allow me to see what is going on in the mind of the disciples and what
        they are struggling with.

        One last remark. I don't think there was a historical kernel to the
        triple prediction of the resurrection. The reason is simple. The
        witnesses who are responsible for that theological event are honest
        enough to admit, in a coded language, that no such prediction ever took
        place.

        I will stop here. I want to go back to the parable of the sower.

        Cheers,

        Joseph

        ================
        Joseph Codsi
        P.O. Box 116-2088
        Beirut, Lebanon
        Telephone (961) 1 423 145
        joseph5@...
      • Joseph Codsi
        Reply to Wieland Wilker Wieland, Yes, you are right. We cannot exclude the possibility of non-eye-witnesses altering the historical events. My original
        Message 3 of 6 , Jul 2, 2005
          Reply to Wieland Wilker

          Wieland,

          Yes, you are right. We cannot exclude the possibility of
          non-eye-witnesses altering the historical events. My original statement
          was misleading.

          We tend to assume that it is much easier for a non eyewitness to alter
          the historical facts than for an eyewitness, especially when we do not
          doubt the good intentions of the people involved. A reliable witness
          tells the truth. This is so under normal conditions. But under abnormal
          conditions, it is possible to have an eyewitness who changes the story
          and even invents certain things that are not historical (the prediction
          of the Easter event, for instance). He does so not by free choice, but
          by necessity and for reasons of faith.

          Because of this, I find the role of the disciples as eyewitnesses
          pivotal in the transmission of what happened during the life of Jesus.
          They transmit the facts under the modality of transforming them, if and
          when they see it necessary.

          Eyewitnesses and non eyewitnesses have contributed to the creation of
          the Jesus of the faith, as the gospels have fashioned him. There was a
          theological necessity behind all this. What is unique about the
          disciples-eyewitnesses is that they knew they altered the historical
          facts. This explains why they identified themselves with the demons who
          revealed Jesus' secret identity against his will.

          So if there is a discrepancy between what the historical Jesus was and
          the way he is described in the gospel, the disciples and eyewitnesses
          can be held responsible for it. I am speaking here not only of a
          theoretical possibility, but of a strong likelihood. What is still
          missing at this stage is the confirmation of my theory.

          Peace,

          Joseph

          =================

          -----Original Message-----
          From: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com [mailto:crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com] On
          Behalf Of Wieland Willker
          Sent: Friday, July 01, 2005 9:43 AM
          To: Crosstalk
          Subject: [XTalk] Re: From the HJ to the historical disciples

          Joseph Codsi wrote:
          > The eyewitnesses play here a pivotal role. All we know about the
          historical Jesus is based on their testimony.

          This sounds reasonable.


          > So if there is a discrepancy between what the historical
          > Jesus was and the way he is described in the gospel, they
          > are likely to be responsible for it.

          This I think is debatable. It can just as well come from the
          non-eye-witnesses.


          Best wishes
          Wieland
          <><
          ------------------------------------------------
          Wieland Willker, Bremen, Germany
          mailto:willker@...-bremen.de
          http://www.uni-bremen.de/~wie
          Textcritical commentary:
          http://www.uni-bremen.de/~wie/TCG/index.html
        • Joseph Codsi
          Reply to Tony Buglass Hello Tony, I wish to say a word about your frustration with the difficulty I have with your insistence on clear answers. I sympathize
          Message 4 of 6 , Jul 4, 2005
            Reply to Tony Buglass

            Hello Tony,

            I wish to say a word about your frustration with the difficulty I have
            with your insistence on clear answers. I sympathize with your
            frustration, but please try to understand the difficulty I have to
            overcome.

            I have stated my theory. John Staton finds that it "requires one to
            believe impossible things before breakfast." I am sure he is not the
            only one to think in this fashion. How do I propose to "prove" my
            theory?

            Everything is based on the gospel of Mark. The proof takes the form of a
            novel reading of the Markan texts. Among the major passages I have
            identified as important, the parable of the sower and the
            misunderstanding about the yeast of the Pharisees play a pivotal role.
            They allow me to identify the question that was troubling the disciples.
            On the one hand, they acknowledge that Jesus initiated them into the
            mystery of the Kingdom of God. He treated them as those who are
            "inside". He told them: "To you has been given the mystery of the
            Kingdom of God" (parable of the sower). On the other hand, they admit
            that Jesus treated them as those who are "outside" (the yeast of the
            Pharisees). This different treatment cannot be pertaining to the Kingdom
            of God. It must be about something else. So the first thing we should do
            is identify the topic in relation to which Jesus kept them "outside".
            Here we do not have a clear identification of the Christian mystery as
            it is said in the Easter revelation. The identification is done
            indirectly, and through the mediation of the Eucharist. The allusions to
            the feedings of the five and four thousand are linked, in the mind of
            the disciples, to the Eucharist. Now the Eucharist is a recollection of
            the death of Jesus and a participation in the Easter mystery. The
            reference to the Eucharist allows me to link the blindness of the
            disciples to the Easter mystery.

            This dual admission, on the part of the disciples, means that they had
            been initiated into the Kingdom of God, not into the Easter mystery.
            This is how I prove that, on the basis of the disciples' own testimony,
            they had not been instructed in the Easter mystery. What follows
            immediately and without any doubt is that all the things that are
            mentioned in the gospel and which locate, in a pre-Easter context,
            things that pertain to the Easter revelation are not historical.

            I invite you to discuss the dual testimony of the disciples as I have
            identified it. Am I seeing in the texts what is not in them?

            Cheers,

            Joseph

            ================
            Joseph Codsi
            P.O. Box 116-2088
            Beirut, Lebanon
            Telephone (961) 1 423 145
            joseph5@...
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