Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [XTalk] Diversity

Expand Messages
  • Ron Price
    ... Rikk, Yes, thanks. ... As I understand it, the topic was diversity within the early Jesus movement. ... Crucial here, surely, is how we view the outcome of
    Message 1 of 10 , Apr 6, 2006
    • 0 Attachment
      Rikk Watts wrote:

      > HI Ron, haven't heard from your cheery self for a while. Hope all is well.

      Rikk,

      Yes, thanks.

      > I thought we were talking about diversity within early Xty.

      As I understand it, the topic was diversity within the early Jesus movement.

      > You seem to be addressing Paul versus Judaism (which would
      > be after the very earliest decades that I think David Gower had in mind and
      > which I contested because it seemed to me that the early movement was too
      > small to sustain much serious diversity‹whatever that means!;

      Crucial here, surely, is how we view the outcome of the Council of
      Jerusalem. If James was demanding a separation of the Jewish and Gentile
      missions, and if James was a supporter of the former while Paul was a
      supporter of the latter, then that looks to me like serious diversity.

      > Are you suggesting that the break between Paul and Judaism created an
      > opportunity for considerable diversity within early Xty?

      No. I am suggesting that the early Jesus movement started (ca. 29 CE) as a
      sect within Judaism. After the crucifixion it began to attract people
      sympathetic to Gentiles (ca. 36 CE) and to develop a theology (Jesus as the
      Son of God etc.) and a liberty (no need for circumcision etc.) which had the
      appearance of a heresy within Judaism. Most of the original members of the
      Jesus movement (James, Peter etc.) probably never accepted the new theology
      or the new liberty. There was thus a sharp division between those who
      rejected the new ideas (championed by James) and those who accepted them
      (championed by Paul). This was the main division within the early Jesus
      movement ca. 35-60 CE.

      With the dramatic successes of Paul's missionary activity, and the growing
      numbers and confidence of the new "Christians" in lands beyond Israel, the
      Gentile-friendly faction within a sect of Judaism was transformed (ca.
      60-100 CE) into the thriving new religion we know as Christianity.

      > BTW I wouldn't just include Paul here. My scholarly expertise, if I have
      > any, is in the NT use of Israel's scriptures. After years in this field I am
      > convinced that the NT writers share a fundamental hermeneutic when it comes
      > to reading Israel's scriptures in the light of Jesus. Have they all been
      > subject to a Pauline filter? I don't think so (hence the diversity, even if
      > to my mind over played). It is this that suggests to me a common core.

      I think that all the NT documents, with the possible exception of the
      Epistle of James, have been subject to a Pauline filter (by which I mean
      that they show the influence of Paul's thinking). The gospels and later
      writers do reflect the diversity of their period, but it is a diversity no
      longer centred on whether to accept Jewish regulations and strict Jewish
      monotheism, for these (at least the former) had already been largely
      abandoned. Diversity now involved other issues such as how to deal with the
      delay in the parousia, whether to present Peter as a failure or as a hero,
      whether women should be respected as equals, and just how divine was Jesus.

      > James and Paul might differ on what people should and to what extent keep
      > the Law and its on-going significance, though surely our evidence here is
      > mighty scanty ....... The problem is there is much we don't know.

      I guess this is what makes the discussion so interesting. If the historical
      evidence answered all the questions unambiguously, there'd be nothing to
      discuss!

      Ron Price

      Derbyshire, UK

      Web site: http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/index.htm
    • Loren Rosson
      Laura Miller of Salon reviews/contrasts Baigent’s “Jesus Papers” with Tabor’s “Jesus Dynasty”. I’ve been through Tabor’s book and am not too
      Message 2 of 10 , Apr 7, 2006
      • 0 Attachment
        Laura Miller of Salon reviews/contrasts Baigent’s
        “Jesus Papers” with Tabor’s “Jesus Dynasty”. I’ve been
        through Tabor’s book and am not too wild about it,
        though obviously anything stands as a remedy to
        Baigent.

        http://salon.com/books/review/2006/04/07/baigent/

        From the review (you have to read an add before
        reading the full thing):

        “The most intriguing discovery to be found in ‘The
        Jesus Papers’ will probably only interest those of us
        who pursue the odd and somewhat pitiful hobby of
        crank-watching; it's finally clear from reading this
        book that it was Baigent -- rather than co-authors
        Leigh and Henry Lincoln -- who actually wrote ‘Holy
        Blood, Holy Grail.’ . . . The style of ‘The Jesus
        Papers,’ a masterly counterpoint of bluster, false
        humility and self-righteousness, matches that of ‘Holy
        Blood, Holy Grail’ like a fingerprint. . .

        “Readers who have only recently learned, via ‘The Da
        Vinci Code,’ of the complicated history of the New
        Testament, are much better served by books like
        Tabor's [‘Jesus Dynasty’] than by conspiracy-mongering
        like ‘The Jesus Papers.’ . . . Like Baigent, [Tabor]
        doesn't believe in the literal truth of the
        resurrection, but unlike Baigent, he keeps his
        religious beliefs to himself. . .

        “Like all efforts to re-create historical events from
        the New Testament, ‘The Jesus Dynasty’ is by necessity
        highly interpretive and contestable, but it's
        certainly more grounded than the fantasies of ‘The
        Jesus Papers.’ Tabor is primarily interested in
        recovering the history of Jesus' immediate family --
        his mother, four brothers and two sisters -- who, he
        maintains, played a far more important role in the
        young religious movement than is generally known. . .

        “If [Tabor’s] book can't win at least a few readers
        away from ‘The Jesus Papers’ this Easter, then, well,
        there is no God.”

        Loren Rosson III
        Nashua NH
        http://lorenrosson.blogspot.com/

        __________________________________________________
        Do You Yahoo!?
        Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
        http://mail.yahoo.com
      • goranson@duke.edu
        Apparently Baigent lost his court case against Da Vinci Code Brown: http://www.sky.com/skynews/article/0,,30000-1218040,00.html Stephen Goranson
        Message 3 of 10 , Apr 7, 2006
        • 0 Attachment
          Apparently Baigent lost his court case against Da Vinci Code Brown:

          http://www.sky.com/skynews/article/0,,30000-1218040,00.html

          Stephen Goranson
          http://www.duke.edu/~goranson
        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.