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Re: [XTalk] Croy and Mark's Ending

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  • RAnderson58@comcast.net
    For the reasons set forth by James McGrath, I have felt that the proposal put forth, by someone whose name escape me, and whose book I lent but it was never
    Message 1 of 11 , Feb 15, 2006
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      For the reasons set forth by James McGrath, I have felt that the proposal put forth, by someone whose name escape me, and whose book I lent but it was never returned, that the ending was a rhetorical device to get the audience to respond, We will tell the story.

      Richard H. Anderson
    • Gordon Raynal
      ... Hi Richard, If I might add to this... endings like this are invitations to beginnings/ new beginnings and/ or continuings. The end of the story isn t
      Message 2 of 11 , Feb 15, 2006
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        On Feb 15, 2006, at 11:14 AM, RAnderson58@... wrote:

        > For the reasons set forth by James McGrath, I have felt that the
        > proposal put forth, by someone whose name escape me, and whose book I
        > lent but it was never returned, that the ending was a rhetorical
        > device to get the audience to respond, We will tell the story.
        >
        > Richard H. Anderson
        >
        Hi Richard,
        If I might add to this... "endings" like this are invitations to
        beginnings/ new beginnings and/ or continuings. "The end of the story"
        isn't about some satisfying conclusion from the author, but about
        living the story out... a part of which has to do with telling...
        sometimes, but more importantly showing such a story in the community's
        and one's life. Such as this shows up in the likes of James saying,
        "If any think they are religious and do not bridle their tongues, but
        deceive their hearts, their religion is worthless." Ep. James 1:26.
        Read/ performed in community such a story as this dramatic/ comedy
        invites and sustains participation. Lots of novels and in the modern
        world a number of really good movies in one way or another use this
        strategy. It is a quite powerful if righty done. Again, Matthew got
        it and added another dimension to help those who didn't quite get it!

        Gordon Raynal
        Inman, SC
      • Bob Schacht
        ... I am intrigued by this suggestion. Is there any parallel in Hellenistic or Jewish theater or literature for this type of rhetorical device? Bob Schacht ...
        Message 3 of 11 , Feb 15, 2006
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          At 06:14 AM 2/15/2006, RAnderson58@... wrote:
          >For the reasons set forth by James McGrath, I have felt that the proposal
          >put forth, by someone whose name escape me, and whose book I lent but it
          >was never returned, that the ending was a rhetorical device to get the
          >audience to respond, We will tell the story.
          >
          >Richard H. Anderson

          I am intrigued by this suggestion. Is there any parallel in Hellenistic or
          Jewish theater or literature for this type of rhetorical device?

          Bob Schacht




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          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • peterson@austingrad.edu
          ... I find this precise suggestion implausible but pointing in the right direction. It s implausible because auditors in Christian communities ca. AD 70 are
          Message 4 of 11 , Feb 15, 2006
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            > At 06:14 AM 2/15/2006, RAnderson58@... wrote:
            > >For the reasons set forth by James McGrath, I have felt that the
            > proposal
            > >put forth, by someone whose name escape me, and whose book I lent but it
            > >was never returned, that the ending was a rhetorical device to get the
            > >audience to respond, We will tell the story.

            I find this precise suggestion implausible but pointing in the right
            direction. It's implausible because auditors in Christian communities ca.
            AD 70 are going to know that in fact the story was told; they will have
            been catechized along the lines of 1 Cor 15:1-11: Christ died, was raised,
            and commissioned apostles to proclaim his impending royal advent. Those
            apostles established and nurtured churches (whose members established yet
            more), and that's how people came to be reclining in a triclinium or
            standing in an atrium hearing this story rehearsed (perhaps in greater
            detail than they had heard it before Mark was written, but in recognizable
            outline).

            The reaction of such a second-generation readership to the Marcan ending
            would not be, "Was this message ever proclaimed?" but "How came the
            message to be proclaimed?" Readers catechized in the way Paul says was
            universal in the first generation would say, "Ah, the disciples were
            faithful after all; the women overcame their fear and told them, and the
            disciples must indeed have seen the risen Lord in Galilee, just as the
            angelic young man said they would. They were willing to risk sharing
            Jesus' fate and continued even when he was no longer on the scene to
            proclaim the kingdom as he had."

            Such a response would be pertinent to the situation of many
            second-generation readers in the wake of the outbreak of open state
            persecution in the imperial capital, the passing of one generation of
            leadership (James in 62, Peter and Paul in 64), and the appearance of the
            desolating sacrilege spoken of by Daniel and the Lord, which portended the
            tribulation preceding Christ's royal advent. "God used the fallible and
            imperfect disciples we see accompanying Jesus to establish the community
            in which we have learned to surrender our life for the sake of Christ and
            his gospel; he can use us to consummate his purposes if we will remain
            steadfast and overcome our fears, as we know the first generation of
            disciples learned to do."

            Something like that is the effect I suggest Mark composed his gospel to
            have. I expect it's a rather unfashionable reading in (inter alia) taking
            the church universal rather than the Marcan community narrowly conceived
            as the interpretive milieu. As I'm in the process of writing this up for
            publication I would appreciate criticism of this summary all the more.

            (c) Jeff Peterson
            Austin Graduate School of Theology
            Austin, Texas
          • RAnderson58@comcast.net
            The name Main Author:of the book and author is Tolbert, Mary Ann, 1947- Title:Sowing the gospel : Mark s world in literary-historical perspective / Primary
            Message 5 of 11 , Feb 15, 2006
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              The name
              Main Author:of the book and author is
              Tolbert, Mary Ann, 1947-
              Title:Sowing the gospel : Mark's world in literary-historical perspective /
              Primary Material:Book
              Publisher:Minneapolis : Fortress Press, 1989.
              Richard H. Anderson


              -------------- Original message --------------
              From: Bob Schacht <r_schacht@...>

              > At 06:14 AM 2/15/2006, RAnderson58@... wrote:
              > >For the reasons set forth by James McGrath, I have felt that the proposal
              > >put forth, by someone whose name escape me, and whose book I lent but it
              > >was never returned, that the ending was a rhetorical device to get the
              > >audience to respond, We will tell the story.
              > >
              > >Richard H. Anderson
              >
              > I am intrigued by this suggestion. Is there any parallel in Hellenistic or
              > Jewish theater or literature for this type of rhetorical device?
              >
              > Bob Schacht
              >

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Bob Schacht
              ... Jeff, Good to see your thoughts on this. However, I wonder if you might be reading a bit too much of later praxis into the 70 C.E. scene? 1 Cor 15 is a
              Message 6 of 11 , Feb 15, 2006
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                At 10:17 AM 2/15/2006, peterson@... wrote:
                > > At 06:14 AM 2/15/2006, RAnderson58@... wrote:
                > > >For the reasons set forth by James McGrath, I have felt that the
                > > proposal
                > > >put forth, by someone whose name escape me, and whose book I lent but it
                > > >was never returned, that the ending was a rhetorical device to get the
                > > >audience to respond, We will tell the story.
                >
                >I find this precise suggestion implausible but pointing in the right
                >direction. It's implausible because auditors in Christian communities ca.
                >AD 70 are going to know that in fact the story was told; they will have
                >been catechized along the lines of 1 Cor 15:1-11: Christ died, was raised,
                >and commissioned apostles to proclaim his impending royal advent.

                Jeff,
                Good to see your thoughts on this. However, I wonder if you might be
                reading a bit too much of later praxis into the 70 C.E. scene? 1 Cor 15 is
                a good basis, but do we really know how widespread, or how uniform, this
                catechesis was? I'm just a bit skeptical when I see statements about what
                auditors in Christian communities ca. AD 70 are "going to know." Surely the
                resurrection was a core doctrine for Paul, but wasn't he always a bit fuzzy
                on exactly what it meant?

                > Those apostles established and nurtured churches (whose members
                > established yet
                >more), and that's how people came to be reclining in a triclinium or
                >standing in an atrium hearing this story rehearsed (perhaps in greater
                >detail than they had heard it before Mark was written, but in recognizable
                >outline).
                >
                >The reaction of such a second-generation readership to the Marcan ending
                >would not be, "Was this message ever proclaimed?" but "How came the
                >message to be proclaimed?" Readers catechized in the way Paul says was
                >universal in the first generation would say, "Ah, the disciples were
                >faithful after all; the women overcame their fear and told them, and the
                >disciples must indeed have seen the risen Lord in Galilee, just as the
                >angelic young man said they would. They were willing to risk sharing
                >Jesus' fate and continued even when he was no longer on the scene to
                >proclaim the kingdom as he had."

                I don't think so. There were probably lots of "must haves," but probably
                not much uniformity among them. The conclusions you write as definite would
                have been questions, and would have provided an opportunity for the elders
                of the community to answer those questions according to what they had seen
                and heard.


                >Such a response would be pertinent to the situation of many
                >second-generation readers in the wake of the outbreak of open state
                >persecution in the imperial capital, the passing of one generation of
                >leadership (James in 62, Peter and Paul in 64), and the appearance of the
                >desolating sacrilege spoken of by Daniel and the Lord, which portended the
                >tribulation preceding Christ's royal advent. . . .

                Your sentence starts out well, but ends with too much back-reading.

                Here's another alternative: Mark had, indeed, material for a longer ending.
                However, he had spoken to enough elders to know that others had different
                experiences of the resurrection, and his own material was not definitive
                enough, or had not been widely accepted. I suspect he stopped, not because
                he didn't "know" what happened, but because he knew that there were too
                many different accounts already, and none were definitive.


                >Something like that is the effect I suggest Mark composed his gospel to
                >have. I expect it's a rather unfashionable reading in (inter alia) taking
                >the church universal rather than the Marcan community narrowly conceived
                >as the interpretive milieu. As I'm in the process of writing this up for
                >publication I would appreciate criticism of this summary all the more.

                I wonder if the shorter ending has anything to do with the Markan Secret?

                Bob Schacht
                University of Hawaii

                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • peterson@austingrad.edu
                ... Paul says that Christ s death and resurrection was the substance of the gospel taught by every authority ( apostle ) who claimed a personal commission by
                Message 7 of 11 , Feb 15, 2006
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                  > Good to see your thoughts on this. However, I wonder if you might be
                  > reading a bit too much of later praxis into the 70 C.E. scene? 1 Cor 15
                  > is
                  > a good basis, but do we really know how widespread, or how uniform, this
                  > catechesis was?

                  Paul says that Christ's death and resurrection was the substance of the
                  "gospel" taught by every authority ("apostle") who claimed a personal
                  commission by the risen Christ in the first generation of the church's
                  existence ("whether I or they, so we teach and so you believed"). He
                  states this (1) as the predicate of an argument he wants to win with those
                  who deny a general resurrection; (2) as a reminder of what he had taught
                  in the course of founding the Corinthian ekklesia, ca. AD 51, which he in
                  turn had received at his entry into the ekklesia, ca. 35; (3) one chapter
                  before inviting his converts to visit the Jerusalem church, either with or
                  without him accompanying them (16:1-2); (4) in a rhetorical situation in
                  which his authority is challenged on multiple fronts, so that to make a
                  readily falsfiable assertion would be to invalidate his authority.

                  If Paul knew that the faith of Peter and James and other Judean
                  authorities didn't center on Jesus' death and resurrection, then he was a
                  fool to put his converts in touch with them having maintained that it did.
                  And if he knew of venerable communities not committed to a resurrected
                  Christ whose representatives the Corinthians might have encountered or
                  heard of, he would have needed to say somewhere in chap. 15, "Now I know
                  there are followers of Jesus who are iffy on his resurrection, but they're
                  completely wrong and servants of Satan and you better stay the heck away
                  from them." That he doesn't suggests that he was unaware of such; and in
                  that case what reason do we have for supposing their existence?

                  The only teaching about Christ we have any positive evidence for in the
                  first generation is centered on his death and resurrection; and Mark
                  indeed presupposes this throughout his narrative, with the shadow of the
                  cross following over the narrative probably as early as 1:2-3 ("your way"
                  = "the Lord's way" = the way Jesus travels to to Zion, the cross, and the
                  emptied tomb), but certainly by 2:20, the resurrection is prefigured no
                  later than 5:41-42 (probably already in 1:31 and 2:9-12), and of course
                  the death-resurrection sequence becomes a major expectation in the
                  narrative in chaps. 8-10.

                  I'm just a bit skeptical when I see statements about what
                  > auditors in Christian communities ca. AD 70 are "going to
                  > know." Surely the
                  > resurrection was a core doctrine for Paul, but wasn't he always a bit
                  > fuzzy
                  > on exactly what it meant?

                  In 1 Cor 15:35ff, Paul is perhaps a bit unclear or paradoxical on the
                  nature of Christ's resurrection body (although in light of work like Dale
                  Martin's in THE CORINTHIAN BODY I think the charge of unclarity is
                  overdone; a "PNEUMATIKOS body" is a body composed of PNEUMA or rarified
                  etherial matter and freed from corruption for eternal existence). But he
                  is quite clear that Christ, after being executed as an enemy of the Roman
                  order, received from God a glorified postmortem existence in which he
                  commissioned emissaries (the aforementioned "apostles") to announce his
                  exaltation and empowered his followers with his Spirit. While hard to
                  believe, that claim doesn't seem fuzzy to me.

                  Dissent from death-resurrection as founding mythos does enter the
                  Christian community in the second generation, but I can't see evidence for
                  it earlier than the opponents in 1 John (or maybe in some passages of the
                  Gospel). In the absence of evidence, and given Paul's insistence that this
                  teaching was uniform in the first generation, I don't see a reason to
                  think otherwise. (Note that this is not a claim to absolute doctrinal or
                  ecclesiastical uniformity in the golden age of the church; it's a claim
                  that Jesus' death and resurrection was the central cult narrative in the
                  first generation.)

                  Jeff Peterson
                  Austin Graduate School of Theology
                  Austin, Texas
                • Stephen C. Carlson
                  ... Well, the entire point of Croy s book is to reopen the issue of whether Mark 16:8 was the author s ending of the gospel. One thing the textual critics are
                  Message 8 of 11 , Feb 16, 2006
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                    At 09:50 AM 2/15/2006 +0000, Tony Buglass wrote:
                    >I think Croy is doing what a lot of others have done, and working around
                    >what he thinks Mark "must have been", rather than accepting that what we
                    >have is what Mark is, and looking for literary and theological reasons for
                    >the ending.

                    At 04:28 PM 2/15/2006 +0000, Tony Buglass wrote:
                    >OK - I admit it: I haven't read Croy. I never said I had, and it isn't at
                    >all guaranteed that I will. I was responding to Ken's setting out of the
                    >issue, in the light of other stuff which I have read - especially Gundry.
                    >My point concerned the assumptions of the point that Croy was making. If
                    >Mk.16:8 *was* the end of his gospel, then no matter what Croy thought, or
                    >those who created alternative endings to Mark, there is little point in
                    >surmising what might have been in the bit which wasn't there, 'cos it wasn't
                    >there. If you get my drift.

                    Well, the entire point of Croy's book is to reopen the issue of
                    whether Mark 16:8 was the author's ending of the gospel. One
                    thing the textual critics are good for reminding us is that the
                    "Mark as we have it" is not necessarily the "Mark as it is/was."
                    To ask whether and for whom Mark ended at 16:8 is text-critical
                    question that cannot be avoided.

                    Magness refers to the mutiliation issue in an interesting way
                    as follows (p. 11): "Third, even if we should accept the theory
                    of damage or loss or mutilation or suppression, we must again
                    affirm that, at least for those who read Sinaiticus or Vaticanus,
                    Mark did end at 16:8 and they had to made sense of the Gospel
                    on that basis."

                    This is an astute observation, because, regardless of whether
                    Mark originally ended at 16:8, it did end right there for the
                    people who produced and read those codices. So, Magness is
                    right to probe what does it mean for Mark to end at 16:8.

                    However, I've been intrigued by C. Kavin Rowe's article in the
                    latest JSNT ("History, Hermeutics and the Unity of Luke-Acts")
                    making the point that, for most early Christians, Luke and Acts
                    were not read as a literary unity; rather, Luke was read as part
                    of a fourfold gospel collection, and Acts did circulate separately.
                    Similarly, the people who produced Sinaiticus and Vaticanus did
                    not read Mark in a vacuum, the way we exegetes like to interpret
                    Mark, because Mark had been part of that gospel collection for at
                    least a hundred years. Their reading of a Mark that ends at 16:8
                    would be different from the one who did not have the benefit of
                    Matthew and Luke and John, would it not?

                    Stephen Carlson
                    --
                    Stephen C. Carlson mailto:scarlson@...
                    Weblog: http://www.hypotyposeis.org/weblog/
                    Author of: The Gospel Hoax, http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1932792481
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