Re: [XTalk] Diversity
- Rikk Watts wrote:
> HI Ron, haven't heard from your cheery self for a while. Hope all is well.Rikk,
> 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 wouldCrucial here, surely, is how we view the outcome of the Council of
> 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 diversitywhatever that means!;
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 anNo. I am suggesting that the early Jesus movement started (ca. 29 CE) as a
> opportunity for considerable diversity within early Xty?
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 haveI think that all the NT documents, with the possible exception of the
> 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.
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 keepI guess this is what makes the discussion so interesting. If the historical
> 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.
evidence answered all the questions unambiguously, there'd be nothing to
Web site: http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/index.htm
- Laura Miller of Salon reviews/contrasts Baigents
Jesus Papers with Tabors Jesus Dynasty. Ive been
through Tabors book and am not too wild about it,
though obviously anything stands as a remedy to
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 [Tabors] 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
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- Apparently Baigent lost his court case against Da Vinci Code Brown: