RE: [XTalk] Jesus was neither Jewish nor Christian
> >Elliott discusses the process of identification and[Mark Matson]
> >self-identification, insider and outsider language,
> >the fact that Jesus is never called Ioudaios in the
> >(save on three occasions, and by outsiders), that
> >Ioudaios was understood in either a narrow regional
> >sense or broader ethnic sense (depending on
> >-- but in any case correctly translated as "Judean"
> >and not "Jew", and the usages of Ioudaios in the
> >Gospels, Acts, and letters of Paul.
> I wonder if this statement is really correct, andNote that the Samaritan *mistakenly* refers to Jesus
> also if we can make "simple" or uniform statements
> abou the term "Ioudaios"?
> The term probably is most common in G. John, so it
> is interesting to note the variety of usage there.
> Note that Jesus is called a "Jew" by the Samaritan
> woman in ch. 4 (yes, I know, an "outsider"), but
> Jesus goes on to affirm in his own language
> "salvation comes from the Jews". This would seem to
> be some kind of self-affirmation.
as a Ioudaios, as he is traveling north from Judea to
Galilee. But yes, there is also Jn 4:22, which is
> Well, back to my main point: "the Jews" are Jesus'I would say the Judeans are Jesus' opponents, though
> opponents, but at the same time he is situated
> within them or closely related to them, and his
> practices are closely linked to them. Indeed the
> extended conversations between "the Jews" and Jesus
> make little sense if he is an outsider to them.
> Isn't the problem that he is one of them, but is
> pushing the bounds of their comfort zone about some
> issues of self-identification (who is the rightful
> representative of God. What is the relationship to
> Moses? etc.)...
he is related to them, but that (aside from Jn 4:22)
there is no case in the gospels where he affirms that
relationship with the term Ioudaios. He preferred
Galilean or Israelite -- and I agree with you,
incidentally, that Galilean Israelites shared more in
common with Judean Israelites than often portrayed in
certain reconstructions of Galilee.
As you note, the meaning of Ioudaios shifts in John,
between the geographical sense and the more inclusive
ethnic. One could refer to Jesus as a Judean in the
latter sense, loosely speaking, though we would be
favoring (4:22 notwithstanding) outsider language (as
with the Samaritan woman, the Persian magi, and
> >(1) Jesus identified himself and his associates as[Mark Matson]
> >Israelites, and his mission as directed to the
> >of Israel. He was identified by other Israelite
> >insiders according to his Israelite family and
> >and by his place of birth and upbringing, Nazareth
> >Galilee. He was Yeshua bar Yoseph, an 'Israelite',
> >'Galilean', a 'Nazarene from Nazareth of Galilee,
> >not a 'Judean' resident in Judea.
> Well, this begs the question that is central here...My own view is that the Jesus movement stood for a
> what is "Jewish" and what is not. Or to explore
> this a bit, what would make the religious and ethnic
> practice of the Galileeans stand out as different
> that those in Judea? Did the presence of the
> Pharisees in Galilee suggest any continuity? Did
> the attention to Torah? Did the feast calendar just
> mentioned above suggest a continuity? Looking
> outside the NT proper -- does the existence of
> miqvaoth in Galilee, and other "jewish" symbols
> (e.g. the use of the manorah, which dates to
> Hasmonean revolt) suggest simililarity? What I am
> trying to get at is what would let us know that he
> was "not" a Jew, given so many points of continuity?
> What might an "Israelite" have been? A
> Torah-keeping Galileean? If so, then the only
> distinction seems to be Galilee vs. Judea as
> homeland. Is that all that is at stake?
particular Galilean way of being Israelite. Josephus
implies that Galileans adhered to a minimal Torah:
circumcision (Vita 112-113,149) and sabbath observance
(Vita 159) may reflect basic customs having roots in
Galilee prior to Hasmonean takeover (from descendants
of northern Israelite peasants left on the land after
722 BCE, as Horsley claims), but not adherence to a
highly codified priestly Torah which had developed in
So again, if we're going to call Jesus a Judean (not
Jew), we would be accurate in the broad ethnic sense,
though we'd be favoring outsider language. I suspect
he and other Galileans were descendant from the
northern Israelites left on the land after the
Assyrians deported primarily rulers, officers, royal
servants, retainers, etc. For centuries the peasants
had remained free of a native aristocracy and temple
community (unlike their Samaritan and Judean cousins),
and that no doubt accounts for much of Jesus' callous
attitude toward the law and temple (as Stevan
describes). Jesus was thus a relative of Judean
Israelites, but a distant one. So I'm somewhere
in-between the "Hellenized Galilee" construct (Mack)
and that which assumes a strong continuity between
Galille and Judea (Meyers, Chancey, Sanders, etc).
Loren Rosson III
Be a better Globetrotter. Get better travel answers from someone who knows. Yahoo! Answers - Check it out.
- --- In email@example.com, Loren Rosson <rossoiii@...> wrote:
> Yes, I see. April DeConick had a strong reaction toI've just read through April's recent postings and she says this:
> Elliott's essay today on her blog, and I can't help
> but think that we come to rely on certain terminology
> as a crutch to protect us from phantom fears, or that
> we're fighting lost battles, however subconsciously.
"Whether Jesus was a Galilean or a Judean can be an interesting
erudite discussion, but it means nothing in regard to whether or not
Jesus was Jewish by our conventional definition of that term. Like
his brothers and sister Jews who lived in the south, Jesus was a
Torah-observant, Temple-oriented, apocalyptic teacher who felt very
strongly that God's covenantal promises would be fulfilled in
Israel. He kept Sabbath, celebrated the festivals, was kosher, and
worshiped Yahweh. I think that it is time for us to face up
to Jesus' Jewishness, and ask ourselves why the some in the academy
(which many of us are a part of) continue to want to deny, ignore or
get around this."
This sort of thing is just what I try to argue against. It's as
though she had never seen a map showing the location of Galilee vis
a vis Samaria and Judea and had no idea about the history of the
place. But surely she does. Knowing that, though, she declares that
it doesn't matter.
Note that her description of Jesus as a Torah-observant, Temple-
oriented Sabbath-keeping Jew is supposedly so obvious that anyone
who might deny it must have their motivations questioned. "Why do
some continue to want to deny this!?" Has she never read Mark's
gospel? She's read Thomas for sure, but dismisses the evidence there
against her own views without any trouble.
The fact that Jesus is Galilean should enable us to select from the
welter of contradictory evidence the more reliable bits. Instead, we
select bits that are intended to show that his being Galilean is
Is it that she doesn't know that Matthew's Gospel is a version of
Mark re-written to give us the view of Jesus that she supports? Or
that Paul first persecuted, as a Pharisee, the movement that he
later joined, a movement that is not Torah-observant, Temple-
oriented, Sabbath-keeping until false brothers crept in to make it
so? (This is my eyewitness's testimony anyhow).
"He made all foods clean." "You have made my Father's house a
robber's cave." "The son of man is Lord of the Sabbath."
But I suppose even thinking these sorts of things makes me one of
>>But you don't reallyanyway.
>>think I -- not to mention Elliott, Esler, Malina --
>>are unwitting Nazis, do you?
>No I certainly don't. Well, not you and Malina