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Re: Paul's silence on Jesus as miracle worker

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  • Dennis Goffin
    Without wishing to appear overly disputatious, I am forced to take issue with the proposition that the man Yeshua is better categorized as a sage, rather than
    Message 1 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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      Without wishing to appear overly disputatious, I am forced to take issue with the proposition that the man Yeshua is better categorized as a sage, rather than an apocalyptic prophet. "Flee from the wrath to come " could not be more representative of an OT prophet, in my view, and that in a nutshell is the message, replete with Zoroastrian eschatology, that Yeshua proclaims, like others of his ilk in that century. That is not to say that he does not proclaim also a hyperbolically demanding morality, merely that his main message is about the imminent arrival of the Kingdom of God on earth.

      Dennis Goffin

      Octogenarian Graduate

      Chorleywood,Herts. UK


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • John E. Staton
      Gordon wrote, Now, could he have also been a healer? Of course. I have nothing against that idea, but I simply see no evidence for that view Largely because
      Message 2 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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        Gordon wrote, "Now,
        could he have also been a healer? Of course. I have nothing against
        that idea, but I simply see no evidence for that view"

        Largely because you have ruled out any evidence that exists a priori,
        Gordon! It is a highly speculative investigation of the Jesus traditions
        which leads to the view of Jesus as primarily a sage - one that by no
        means convinces the whole academic community. Surely it counts against
        your view that so much was written about Jesus performing miracles so
        soon after his death.Whatever one's view of the date of the gospels,
        there were obviously people alive who had actually *met* Jesus when Mark
        was written and when the tradition behind the gospels was being
        forumlated. If Jesus was known *never* to have performed anything that
        even looked like a miracle, these traditions would never have been
        believed! Indeed, if Jesus had not done some "deeds of wonder", why
        would anybody have picked out such a nobody to make a midrash of the
        Elijah-Elisha cyc;e of? Indeed, I believe this is James Dunn's strongest
        point: that *something* must have happened to cause people to say these
        things about Jesus. Perhaps we shouldn't get hung up on definitions of
        miracle which are based on Hume, or on the Vatican's critieria for
        canonising a saint. In those days there were no commonly acknowledged
        "laws of nature". A miracle was a marvellous act, an act that caused
        wonder. Maybe if the same thing had been done today, we would be able to
        account for it according to the laws of nature. That isn't the point.
        The point is that if the Jesus tradition tells us anything, it tells us
        that he did acts that casued wonder. Whether he actually did this or
        that act may be arguable, but that he did some acts which caused people
        to wonder must be certain.

        Best Wishes

        --
        JOHN E. STATON
        www.christianreflection.org.uk
      • Bob Schacht
        ... One of the things Stevan Davies examines in his book, Jesus the Healer, is this evidence. Davies adopts the indirect method, which gets around the direct
        Message 3 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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          At 06:01 AM 8/1/2008, John E. Staton wrote:
          >Gordon wrote, "Now,
          > could he have also been a healer? Of course. I have nothing against
          > that idea, but I simply see no evidence for that view"
          >
          >Largely because you have ruled out any evidence that exists a priori, Gordon!

          One of the things Stevan Davies examines in his book, Jesus the Healer, is
          this "evidence."
          Davies adopts the indirect method, which gets around the direct discussion
          of miracles, by showing that whatever else might be said about Jesus, his
          contemporaries regarded Jesus as a healer. Gordon apparently does not count
          this as "evidence."

          Bob Schacht
          University of Hawaii

          > It is a highly speculative investigation of the Jesus traditions
          >which leads to the view of Jesus as primarily a sage - one that by no
          >means convinces the whole academic community. Surely it counts against
          >your view that so much was written about Jesus performing miracles so
          >soon after his death.Whatever one's view of the date of the gospels,
          >there were obviously people alive who had actually *met* Jesus when Mark
          >was written and when the tradition behind the gospels was being
          >forumlated. If Jesus was known *never* to have performed anything that
          >even looked like a miracle, these traditions would never have been
          >believed! Indeed, if Jesus had not done some "deeds of wonder", why
          >would anybody have picked out such a nobody to make a midrash of the
          >Elijah-Elisha cyc;e of? Indeed, I believe this is James Dunn's strongest
          >point: that *something* must have happened to cause people to say these
          >things about Jesus. Perhaps we shouldn't get hung up on definitions of
          >miracle which are based on Hume, or on the Vatican's critieria for
          >canonising a saint. In those days there were no commonly acknowledged
          >"laws of nature". A miracle was a marvellous act, an act that caused
          >wonder. Maybe if the same thing had been done today, we would be able to
          >account for it according to the laws of nature. That isn't the point.
          >The point is that if the Jesus tradition tells us anything, it tells us
          >that he did acts that casued wonder. Whether he actually did this or
          >that act may be arguable, but that he did some acts which caused people
          >to wonder must be certain.
          >
          >Best Wishes
          >
          >--
          >JOHN E. STATON
          >www.christianreflection.org.uk
          >
          >
          >
          >------------------------------------
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          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Gordon Raynal
          Hi Dennis, I appreciate you clear position based on that set of words as central. I don t believe Jesus said those words. Per my note this morning, I don t
          Message 4 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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            Hi Dennis,

            I appreciate you clear position based on that set of words as
            central. I don't believe Jesus said those words. Per my note this
            morning, I don't think those words are centrally constitutional to
            what Jesus and friends were up to at the end of the 20's in and
            around Galilee. I think those words are from later admirers of Jesus
            and members of some of the communities that came from that
            constitutional work. And I find it none too surprising that there
            came to be a focus on Classical Prophecy and Apocalyptic Prophecy as
            time went on. So, I hope this clarifies our very basic disagreement.

            And congratulations on your "graduation:)!"

            Gordon Raynal
            Inman, SC
            On Aug 1, 2008, at 10:04 AM, Dennis Goffin wrote:

            > Without wishing to appear overly disputatious, I am forced to take
            > issue with the proposition that the man Yeshua is better
            > categorized as a sage, rather than an apocalyptic prophet. "Flee
            > from the wrath to come " could not be more representative of an OT
            > prophet, in my view, and that in a nutshell is the message, replete
            > with Zoroastrian eschatology, that Yeshua proclaims, like others of
            > his ilk in that century. That is not to say that he does not
            > proclaim also a hyperbolically demanding morality, merely that his
            > main message is about the imminent arrival of the Kingdom of God on
            > earth.
            >
            > Dennis Goffin
            >
            > Octogenarian Graduate
            >
            > Chorleywood,Herts. UK
            >
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
            >
            > ------------------------------------
            >
            > The XTalk Home Page is http://ntgateway.com/xtalk/
            >
            > To subscribe to Xtalk, send an e-mail to: crosstalk2-
            > subscribe@yahoogroups.com
            >
            > To unsubscribe, send an e-mail to: crosstalk2-
            > unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
            >
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            > owners@yahoogroups.com
            >
            > Yahoo! Groups Links
            >
            >
            >
          • Gordon Raynal
            Hi John, ... What do you take as this evidence? ... Actually, not. It does not take long at all for legendary communications to arise. What we have in terms
            Message 5 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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              Hi John,

              On Aug 1, 2008, at 12:01 PM, John E. Staton wrote:

              > Gordon wrote, "Now,
              > could he have also been a healer? Of course. I have nothing
              > against
              > that idea, but I simply see no evidence for that view"
              >
              > Largely because you have ruled out any evidence that exists a priori,
              > Gordon!

              What do you take as this evidence?

              > It is a highly speculative investigation of the Jesus traditions
              > which leads to the view of Jesus as primarily a sage - one that by no
              > means convinces the whole academic community. Surely it counts against
              > your view that so much was written about Jesus performing miracles so
              > soon after his death.

              Actually, not. It does not take long at all for legendary
              communications to arise. What we have in terms of these Gospel
              wonder stories are clearly, well crafted stories that go with the
              theology and characterization of each of the sources. Most I think
              still posit that Mark was written slightly before or after the R-J
              War. I actually favor a date of about 80 CE. But either way, we're
              talking some 40 to 50 years between Jesus and that writing. That's
              MORE than a plenty enough time to craft such delightful,
              theologically powerful stories.
              > Whatever one's view of the date of the gospels,
              > there were obviously people alive who had actually *met* Jesus when
              > Mark
              > was written and when the tradition behind the gospels was being
              > forumlated.

              Just a note here, I don't think the NT Gospels are founded in
              historical reports, nor was their aim in any way to be
              "biographies." I think they were consciously written as theological
              works and that the creativity there in is exactly the same sort of
              creativity that went into the stories about Adam and Eve, Noah,
              Abraham, Moses, etc. etc. etc.

              > If Jesus was known *never* to have performed anything that
              > even looked like a miracle, these traditions would never have been
              > believed!

              Oh come on now:)! It has to do with what you are asserting "should
              be believed," right? I believe, for instance that Genesis 1 is a
              terrific theological formulation. I happen to believe it. I also
              collect fossils and think Darwin was one cool cat:)! Aside from
              that, people make up stuff all the time and get bunches of people to
              believe it. Those folks involved in certainty that there were WMD's
              in Iraq in recent years did a real swell job of that!

              > Indeed, if Jesus had not done some "deeds of wonder", why
              > would anybody have picked out such a nobody to make a midrash of the
              > Elijah-Elisha cyc;e of?

              See my note from this a.m. In the big old world of Imperial Roman
              Theology (to use Dom Crossan's expression) that with arms,
              officialdom and economic might proclaimed "the Pax Romani," I find it
              not surprising at all that those Jewish folks went dashing to their
              Scriptures to fully fund and found their "ministry of
              reconciliation." Actually, if this were a theological discussion
              group, I might talk about that as a matter of "signs and wonders,"
              but this isn't that sort of group, and so here I'll stick with history.

              > Indeed, I believe this is James Dunn's strongest
              > point: that *something* must have happened to cause people to say
              > these
              > things about Jesus.

              And he (and you) account that "something" in one way and I do so in
              another way. And just as an aside here, I simply want to note
              earlier this year there was a new special on MLK and the Civil Rights
              movement. Very, very well done. (forget which channel it was on)
              But it doesn't take a lot of "something" to cause a great social
              shift to get ignited. Such things as tired Rosa Parks not getting
              out of her seat had enormous social ramifications. And a mere
              Southern Baptist preacher and a group of friends... with word and
              marches... fundamentally changed America. "Something" doesn't have
              to be huge to make a huge difference and I think this thought well
              applies to Jesus and a small bunch of friends and what they did.

              > Perhaps we shouldn't get hung up on definitions of
              > miracle which are based on Hume, or on the Vatican's critieria for
              > canonising a saint. In those days there were no commonly acknowledged
              > "laws of nature". A miracle was a marvellous act, an act that caused
              > wonder. Maybe if the same thing had been done today, we would be
              > able to
              > account for it according to the laws of nature. That isn't the point.
              > The point is that if the Jesus tradition tells us anything, it
              > tells us
              > that he did acts that casued wonder. Whether he actually did this or
              > that act may be arguable, but that he did some acts which caused
              > people
              > to wonder must be certain.

              I love the word wonder, actually. It is primally what wisdom speech
              arouses... if heard, it makes one wonder??? The force of opening up
              and exciting imaginative responses to situations in the world if
              incredibly powerful. Words are very often exactly "the Something"
              that change the world.

              >
              > Best Wishes

              thanks and same to you.

              Gordon Raynal
              Inman, SC
              >
              > --
              > JOHN E. STATON
              > www.christianreflection.org.uk
              >
              >
            • Dennis Goffin
              Hi Gordon, Which are the words you don t think Jesus said? Thanks for your congratulations, but I left University College Leicester over 50-odd years ago.
              Message 6 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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                Hi Gordon,
                Which are the words you don't think Jesus said? Thanks for your congratulations, but I left University College Leicester over 50-odd years ago.
                Regards,
                Dennis Goffin BA Hons. French
                Chorleywood UK






                --- Original Message -----
                From: Gordon Raynal
                To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                Cc: Michael Ensley
                Sent: Friday, August 01, 2008 6:35 PM
                Subject: Re: [XTalk] Re: Paul's silence on Jesus as miracle worker


                Hi Dennis,

                I appreciate you clear position based on that set of words as
                central. I don't believe Jesus said those words. Per my note this
                morning, I don't think those words are centrally constitutional to
                what Jesus and friends were up to at the end of the 20's in and
                around Galilee. I think those words are from later admirers of Jesus
                and members of some of the communities that came from that
                constitutional work. And I find it none too surprising that there
                came to be a focus on Classical Prophecy and Apocalyptic Prophecy as
                time went on. So, I hope this clarifies our very basic disagreement.

                And congratulations on your "graduation:)!"

                Gordon Raynal
                Inman, SC
                On Aug 1, 2008, at 10:04 AM, Dennis Goffin wrote:

                > Without wishing to appear overly disputatious, I am forced to take
                > issue with the proposition that the man Yeshua is better
                > categorized as a sage, rather than an apocalyptic prophet. "Flee
                > from the wrath to come " could not be more representative of an OT
                > prophet, in my view, and that in a nutshell is the message, replete
                > with Zoroastrian eschatology, that Yeshua proclaims, like others of
                > his ilk in that century. That is not to say that he does not
                > proclaim also a hyperbolically demanding morality, merely that his
                > main message is about the imminent arrival of the Kingdom of God on
                > earth.
                >
                > Dennis Goffin
                >
                > Octogenarian Graduate
                >
                > Chorleywood,Herts. UK
                >
                >
                > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                >
                >
                > ------------------------------------
                >
                > The XTalk Home Page is http://ntgateway.com/xtalk/
                >
                > To subscribe to Xtalk, send an e-mail to: crosstalk2-
                > subscribe@yahoogroups.com
                >
                > To unsubscribe, send an e-mail to: crosstalk2-
                > unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                >
                > List managers may be contacted directly at: crosstalk2-
                > owners@yahoogroups.com
                >
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >
                >
                >





                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Gordon Raynal
                Hi Bob, ... I trust my note this morning clarifies the important broad understanding that healing played and how that data points to Jesus as involved in being
                Message 7 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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                  Hi Bob,
                  On Aug 1, 2008, at 12:55 PM, Bob Schacht wrote:

                  > At 06:01 AM 8/1/2008, John E. Staton wrote:
                  >> Gordon wrote, "Now,
                  >> could he have also been a healer? Of course. I have nothing
                  >> against
                  >> that idea, but I simply see no evidence for that view"
                  >>
                  >> Largely because you have ruled out any evidence that exists a
                  >> priori, Gordon!
                  >
                  > One of the things Stevan Davies examines in his book, Jesus the
                  > Healer, is
                  > this "evidence."
                  > Davies adopts the indirect method, which gets around the direct
                  > discussion
                  > of miracles, by showing that whatever else might be said about
                  > Jesus, his
                  > contemporaries regarded Jesus as a healer. Gordon apparently does
                  > not count
                  > this as "evidence."
                  >
                  > Bob Schacht
                  > University of Hawaii

                  I trust my note this morning clarifies the important broad
                  understanding that healing played and how that data points to Jesus
                  as involved in being an agent of social healing. If "healer" (of
                  indviduals) is generalized to include to "tending to/ paying
                  attention to/ praying over/ talking with... telling stories...
                  sharing their common Hebrew notions about the power of trusting
                  God"... that sort of thing, then the term is okay by me. All of
                  those things have quite a lot to do with regaining health, of
                  course. I'm sure your mom and dad did those sorts of things for
                  you! But as the general tendency is to want to dash to cross
                  cultural studies and look at such as exorcism, then yes, I'll hold
                  off from that designation. And one reason are the two story sources
                  we have! The Markan/ Synoptic tradition majors in "exorcism." In
                  John this is no where in sight. One can account for those
                  differences easily enough in terms of theological framing and
                  characterization choices. But again, I'm not against the idea that
                  Jesus in some way may have been a folk tradition healer, but I just
                  see no evidence to support that proposition. As noted this morning,
                  I find this attribution to be part of a larger story telling agenda
                  that is theologically rooted, not biographically rooted.

                  Gordon Raynal
                  Inman, SC
                  >
                • Dennis Goffin
                  Hallo again Gordon, Since sending my last note I have checked that the words I used are quoted by Matthew and Luke and are spoken by John the Baptist when
                  Message 8 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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                    Hallo again Gordon,
                    Since sending my last note I have checked that the words I used are quoted by Matthew and Luke and are spoken by John the Baptist when Jesus came to him for baptism, John the Baptist was an apocalypticist and for Jesus to ask John to baptise him must clearly indicate that he sympathised with and endorsed the position John took. In his book "Jesus: Apocalyptic Prophet Of the New Millennium" Bart Ehrman makes the point on page 139 that the Christian church which succeeded Jesus was also clearly apocalyptic and therefore if the beginning and the end were both apocalyptic, the conclusion has to be that Jesus himself must have been a Jewish apocalypticist.
                    Dennis Goffin
                    UK





                    ----- Original Message -----
                    From: Gordon Raynal
                    To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                    Cc: Michael Ensley
                    Sent: Friday, August 01, 2008 6:35 PM
                    Subject: Re: [XTalk] Re: Paul's silence on Jesus as miracle worker


                    Hi Dennis,

                    I appreciate you clear position based on that set of words as
                    central. I don't believe Jesus said those words. Per my note this
                    morning, I don't think those words are centrally constitutional to
                    what Jesus and friends were up to at the end of the 20's in and
                    around Galilee. I think those words are from later admirers of Jesus
                    and members of some of the communities that came from that
                    constitutional work. And I find it none too surprising that there
                    came to be a focus on Classical Prophecy and Apocalyptic Prophecy as
                    time went on. So, I hope this clarifies our very basic disagreement.

                    And congratulations on your "graduation:)!"

                    Gordon Raynal
                    Inman, SC
                    On Aug 1, 2008, at 10:04 AM, Dennis Goffin wrote:

                    > Without wishing to appear overly disputatious, I am forced to take
                    > issue with the proposition that the man Yeshua is better
                    > categorized as a sage, rather than an apocalyptic prophet. "Flee
                    > from the wrath to come " could not be more representative of an OT
                    > prophet, in my view, and that in a nutshell is the message, replete
                    > with Zoroastrian eschatology, that Yeshua proclaims, like others of
                    > his ilk in that century. That is not to say that he does not
                    > proclaim also a hyperbolically demanding morality, merely that his
                    > main message is about the imminent arrival of the Kingdom of God on
                    > earth.
                    >
                    > Dennis Goffin
                    >
                    > Octogenarian Graduate
                    >
                    > Chorleywood,Herts. UK
                    >
                    >
                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    >
                    >
                    > ------------------------------------
                    >
                    > The XTalk Home Page is http://ntgateway.com/xtalk/
                    >
                    > To subscribe to Xtalk, send an e-mail to: crosstalk2-
                    > subscribe@yahoogroups.com
                    >
                    > To unsubscribe, send an e-mail to: crosstalk2-
                    > unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                    >
                    > List managers may be contacted directly at: crosstalk2-
                    > owners@yahoogroups.com
                    >
                    > Yahoo! Groups Links
                    >
                    >
                    >





                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Gordon Raynal
                    Hi Dennis, ... Ehrman, and I guess still the majority, like to put out this line: JTB was an apocalyptic prophet, Paul was an apocalyptic theologian, so Jesus
                    Message 9 of 21 , Aug 2, 2008
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                      Hi Dennis,

                      On Aug 1, 2008, at 3:39 PM, Dennis Goffin wrote:

                      > Hallo again Gordon,
                      > Since sending my last note I have
                      > checked that the words I used are quoted by Matthew and Luke and
                      > are spoken by John the Baptist when Jesus came to him for
                      > baptism, John the Baptist was an apocalypticist and for Jesus to
                      > ask John to baptise him must clearly indicate that he sympathised
                      > with and endorsed the position John took. In his book "Jesus:
                      > Apocalyptic Prophet Of the New Millennium" Bart Ehrman makes the
                      > point on page 139 that the Christian church which succeeded Jesus
                      > was also clearly apocalyptic and therefore if the beginning and the
                      > end were both apocalyptic, the conclusion has to be that Jesus
                      > himself must have been a Jewish apocalypticist.
                      > Dennis Goffin
                      > UK

                      Ehrman, and I guess still the majority, like to put out this line:
                      "JTB was an apocalyptic prophet, Paul was an apocalyptic theologian,
                      so Jesus in the middle fit right in." (or some version of that).
                      Some version of this kind of formulation seems to simply sum up that
                      there is a pure unbroken stream of apocalyptic prophecy that all
                      endorsed and had essential agreement about.... and then, that had to
                      be played down and re-interpreted... well, because we're all still
                      here:)! You will not be surprised to learn that I think this is not
                      only inaccurate for the overall picture of the times, but also not
                      even very helpful in terms of JTB, Jesus, Paul and other early
                      followers of Jesus. So, in simple points:

                      In that era, as before and after, I think Jewish folks were quite
                      diverse in their overall theological outlooks and in how the genre of
                      apocalyptic functioned. We get glimpses of that diversity in the
                      little we know about the various factions and parties that are
                      mentioned in the NT and known is such as Josephus and Philo. To
                      conclude that Jews in that era were simply overwhelming "apocalyptic"
                      and agreed on what that meant is, for me, a huge and broad
                      generalization that is not supported in the literature and not ever
                      very helpful. So...

                      JTB, I think is best described in terms of the Prophetic traditions
                      of Israel... one who utilized Apocalyptic Speech, surely, but is in
                      fact best understood in what he was named for: Baptism. Central
                      there is "to repent and believe."

                      To Paul, he races all over the Scriptures to write his few letters we
                      have. (I think the authentic Pauline corpus is limited to Romans, I
                      & II Corinthians, Philippians, Galatians and Philemon and those show
                      signs of editing). He definitely used the apocalyptic genre, but so
                      also other genres of Scripture... including wisdom. I can accept
                      that apocalyptic was central for him, but then please note what Paul
                      says about what "God had done in Jesus Christ." (see I Cor. 1:30
                      "He (God) is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, who became for
                      us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification and
                      redemption.") Note what comes first when Paul wants to write about
                      the significance of the Cross. The Cross, of all things,
                      communicates wisdom, first!

                      And so to Jesus... I think his prime and core "missional speech" is
                      that of the aphorisms and parables. That is wisdom speech, hence I
                      think on the basis of his own speech and not the ways others
                      theologized about him is the best way to judge how to understand the
                      man and what he was up to. That mission agenda I presented yesterday
                      can be interpreted apocalyptically, but it is not at heart an
                      apocalyptic agenda. And I take quite seriously that Jesus didn't
                      think it was, because I think these words are from Jesus:

                      Q/Luke 17:20-21 "The Kingdom of God is not coming with things that
                      can be observed; now will they say, 'Look, here it is!' or 'There is
                      is!' For, in fact, the kingdom of God is among you."

                      I think that is vintage wisdom thought. I think it is vintage
                      Jesus. I know it can be reframed in terms of a future focused
                      eschatology and indeed was in some strands of the tradition. But
                      then I think those drawn to earliest Christianity were a diverse lot
                      on these issues and thankfully we have glimpses of this in the
                      various strands of literature we have.

                      Hope this helps!

                      Gordon Raynal
                      Inman, SC
                    • Jack Kilmon
                      Dennis and Gordon: Forgive me for the length of this and also, asthe follow the Aramaic guy, for use of Yeshua instead of Jesus. There is a ton of
                      Message 10 of 21 , Aug 2, 2008
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                        Dennis and Gordon:

                        Forgive me for the length of this and also, asthe "follow the Aramaic" guy,
                        for use of "Yeshua" instead of "Jesus."

                        There is a ton of literature on Yeshua's use of his self-description as the
                        bar nasha (Son of Man) and disagreements on what that meant. If the Dead
                        Sea Scroll corpus is a good barometer, the late 2nd temple period saw an
                        emergence of Daniel-Enochian fervor. In both Daniel and the Enochian
                        literature, the "son of man" plays a central role.

                        Yeshua himself, NOT ONCE, refers to himself with certainty as the Messiah
                        but instead refers to himself as the bar nasha/ben adam of Daniel and
                        Enoch..."coming on the clouds, etc." It was Paul of Tarsus...hostile to the
                        Nazarenes, who conferred the name of XRISTOS on Yeshua in his reconstruction
                        of Yeshua as the Pauline "Christ Crucified."

                        The cradle from which both Jewish and Christian "mysticism" arose was
                        Enochian apocalypticism, the same cradle from which post-destruction Ma'asei
                        Merkavah (which would eventually develop into Kabbala) and the Hekhalot
                        literature arose which deals with "mystical" ascents into heaven.

                        Anyone pursuing the ancient Jewish sources from which the Nazarenes arose,
                        should read the considerable Enochian literary corpus now available thanks
                        to the Qumran texts. The Books of Enoch and their related texts, Jubilees,
                        Giants, Weeks, Parables, Watchers, Testimonies of the 12 Patriarchs, Dreams,
                        etc. Enochian apocalypticism is a reflection of a Mesopotamian alternative
                        to Mosaic" Judaism with its focus on Enmeduranki, the 7th antediluvian king
                        of Sippar in the Sumerian Chronicles and a counterpart (or model) for Enoch.

                        There was a considerable influence by Zoroastrianism on Judaism as a result
                        to the Babylonian Captivity after which they brought the Enochian traditions
                        to Jerusalem upon the return. The Jerusalem priests at that time hated the
                        Enochian Jews (and it is my position that Jesus was an Enochian Jew) who
                        supported the Maccabees thereby gaining favor with the Hasmoneans. These
                        Enochian Jews became, IMO, the Essenes who subsequently developed serious
                        issues with the Hasmonean priest-kings. I don't think anyonewould argue
                        that the Dead Sea Scrolls are not strongly Enochian.

                        The Jewish Nazarenes ("branchers") were heirs, IMO, to the Enochian
                        traditions but Gentile Christianity imported a constellation of influences
                        from Graeco-Roman sources. That Enochian Judaism was alternative to Mosaic
                        nomian Judaeism can explain why Paul appears anti-nomian and why Enoch was
                        not included in the Rabbinical canon.

                        Quoted in the Book of Jude:

                        "And behold! He cometh with ten thousands of His holy ones To execute
                        judgement upon all, And to destroy all the ungodly: And to convict all flesh
                        of all the works of their ungodliness which they have ungodly committed, And
                        of all the hard things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him."
                        (Enoch 1:9)

                        Other references to the SON OF MAN in Enoch:

                        "And there I saw One who had a head of days, And His head was white like
                        wool, And with Him was another being whose countenance had the appearance of
                        a man, And his face was full of graciousness, like one of the holy angels. 2
                        And I asked the angel who went with me and showed me all the hidden things,
                        concerning that 3 Son of Man, who he was, and whence he was, (and) why he
                        went with the Ancient of Days? And he answered and said unto me: This
                        is the Son of Man who hath righteousness, With whom dwelleth righteousness,
                        And who revealeth all the treasures of that which is hidden, Because the
                        Lord of Hosts hath chosen him, And whose lot hath the pre-eminence before
                        the Lord of Hosts in uprightness for ever." (Part 8 Chapter 46:1-3)

                        1 And in that place I saw the fountain of righteousness Which was
                        inexhaustible: And around it were many fountains of wisdom: And all the
                        thirsty drank of them, And were filled with wisdom, And their dwellings were
                        with the righteous and holy and elect. 2 And at that hour that Son of Man
                        was named In the presence of the Lord of Hosts, And his name before the
                        Ancient of Days. 3 Yea, before the sun and the signs were created, Before
                        the stars of the heaven were made, His name
                        was named before the Lord of Hosts. 4 He shall be a staff to the righteous
                        whereon to stay themselves and not fall, And he shall be the light of the
                        Gentiles, And the hope of those who are troubled of heart. 5 All who dwell
                        on earth shall fall down and worship before him, And will praise and bless
                        and celebrate with song the Lord of Hosts. 6 And for this reason hath he
                        been chosen and hidden before Him, Before the creation of the world and for
                        evermore. 7 And the wisdom of the Lord of Hosts hath revealed him to the
                        holy and righteous; For he hath preserved the lot of the righteous, Because
                        they have hated and despised this world of unrighteousness, And have hated
                        all its works and ways in the name of the Lord of Hosts: For in his name
                        they are saved, And according to his good pleasure hath it been in regard to
                        their life. (Part 8 Chapter 48:1-7)

                        The Book of Daniel, like Enoch, was written originally in Aramaic. It
                        contains the most famous reference to the SON OF MAN.

                        Daniel 7:13-14 (WEB)
                        13 חזה הוית בחזוי ליליא וארו עם־ענני שׁמיא כבר אנשׁ אתה הוה ועד־עתיק יומיא
                        מטה וקדמוהי הקרבוהי׃ 14 ולה יהיב שׁלטן ויקר ומלכו וכל עממיא אמיא ולשׁניא לה
                        יפלחון שׁלטנה שׁלטן עלם די־לא יעדה ומלכותה פ

                        13 I saw in the night-visions, and, behold, there came with the clouds of
                        the sky one like a son of man (כבר אנש [kibar 'anash]), and he came even to
                        the ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. 14 There was
                        given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all the peoples, nations,
                        and languages should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion,
                        which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be
                        destroyed.

                        Yeshua spoke of himself, just as above in Daniel, at Matthew 24:30 And
                        then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all
                        the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in
                        the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

                        .....and at Matthew 26:64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said:
                        nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting
                        on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

                        As you can see, Yeshua refers to himself as the SON OF MAN (Aramaic bar
                        nasha) of Daniel and Enoch andnot, IMO, as simply the bar nash/a idiom for
                        "just a guy."


                        Now let's see how many times Yeshua calls himself the bar nasha (son of
                        man)...he never referred to himself with certainty or non-cryptically as
                        the Messiah.

                        Matthew 8:20 And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds
                        of the air [have] nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay [his]
                        head.

                        Matthew 9:6 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to
                        forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy
                        bed, and go unto thine house.

                        Matthew 10:23 But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into
                        another: for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities
                        of Israel, till the Son of man be come.

                        Matthew 11:19 The Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say, Behold
                        a man gluttonous, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners. But
                        wisdom is justified of her children.

                        Matthew 12:8 For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.

                        Matthew 12:32 And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall
                        be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not
                        be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the [world] to come.

                        Matthew 12:40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's
                        belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart
                        of the earth.

                        Matthew 13:37 He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed
                        is the Son of man;

                        Matthew 13:41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall
                        gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do
                        iniquity;

                        Matthew 16:13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked
                        his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?

                        Matthew 16:27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with
                        his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.

                        Matthew 16:28 Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which
                        shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his
                        kingdom.

                        Matthew 17:9 And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them,
                        saying, Tell the vision to no man, until the Son of man be risen again from
                        the dead.

                        Matthew 17:12 But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew
                        him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also
                        the Son of man suffer of them.

                        Matthew 17:22 And while they abode in Galilee, Jesus said unto them, The Son
                        of man shall be betrayed into the hands of men:

                        Matthew 18:11 For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.

                        Matthew 19:28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye
                        which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in
                        the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the
                        twelve tribes of Israel.

                        Matthew 20:18 Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be
                        betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn
                        him to death,

                        Matthew 20:28 Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to
                        minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

                        Matthew 24:27 For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even
                        unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

                        Matthew 24:30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven:
                        and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son
                        of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. (this is
                        right out of Enoch 7)

                        Matthew 24:37 But as the days of Noe [were], so shall also the coming of
                        the Son of man be.

                        Matthew 24:39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so
                        shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

                        Matthew 24:44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think
                        not the Son of man cometh.

                        Matthew 25:13 Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour
                        wherein the Son of man cometh.

                        Matthew 25:31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy
                        angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:

                        Matthew 26:2 Ye know that after two days is [the feast of] the passover,
                        and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified.

                        Matthew 26:24 The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto
                        that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man
                        if he had not been born.

                        Matthew 26:45 Then cometh he to his disciples, and saith unto them, Sleep
                        on now, and take [your] rest: behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of
                        Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners.

                        Matthew 26:64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto
                        you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of
                        power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

                        Yeshua is reported by Matthew alone to have claimed to have been the SON OF
                        MAN (bar nasha) of Daniel and Enoch THIRTY TIMES....so why don't we believe
                        him? Why do we believe Paul of Tarsus instead?

                        An Enochian Jew, in the late second temple period, is one who believed in
                        the Enochian apocalyptic such as the Essenes and Yohanan haMatbil.

                        Jesus/Yeshua was indeed, IMO, an apocalyptic herald of the imminent malkutha
                        d'alaha (Kingdom of God) in the Enochian tradition and, as such, outside of
                        "normative" Mosaic Judaism. I think there are other indicators that this
                        "Son of Man" from the ancient of days could be "Lord of the Sabbath" as well
                        as the Mosaic laws (seen in the formula "It is written" or "You have
                        heard"...ABC "but *I* tell you"...XYZ).

                        So yes, he was apocalyptic but, in his mind, just not a "sage" but THE bar
                        nasha that was expected by Yohanan/John (Matthew 11:3), the apocalyptic
                        redeemer of Daniel 7:13-14.

                        Jack

                        Jack Kilmon
                        San Antonio,TX


                        ----- Original Message -----
                        From: "Dennis Goffin" <dgoffin@...>
                        To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                        Sent: Friday, August 01, 2008 2:39 PM
                        Subject: Re: [XTalk] Re: Paul's silence on Jesus as miracle worker


                        > Hallo again Gordon,
                        > Since sending my last note I have checked
                        > that the words I used are quoted by Matthew and Luke and are spoken by
                        > John the Baptist when Jesus came to him for baptism, John the Baptist
                        > was an apocalypticist and for Jesus to ask John to baptise him must
                        > clearly indicate that he sympathised with and endorsed the position John
                        > took. In his book "Jesus: Apocalyptic Prophet Of the New Millennium" Bart
                        > Ehrman makes the point on page 139 that the Christian church which
                        > succeeded Jesus was also clearly apocalyptic and therefore if the
                        > beginning and the end were both apocalyptic, the conclusion has to be that
                        > Jesus himself must have been a Jewish apocalypticist.
                        > Dennis Goffin
                        > UK
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > ----- Original Message -----
                        > From: Gordon Raynal
                        > To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                        > Cc: Michael Ensley
                        > Sent: Friday, August 01, 2008 6:35 PM
                        > Subject: Re: [XTalk] Re: Paul's silence on Jesus as miracle worker
                        >
                        >
                        > Hi Dennis,
                        >
                        > I appreciate you clear position based on that set of words as
                        > central. I don't believe Jesus said those words. Per my note this
                        > morning, I don't think those words are centrally constitutional to
                        > what Jesus and friends were up to at the end of the 20's in and
                        > around Galilee. I think those words are from later admirers of Jesus
                        > and members of some of the communities that came from that
                        > constitutional work. And I find it none too surprising that there
                        > came to be a focus on Classical Prophecy and Apocalyptic Prophecy as
                        > time went on. So, I hope this clarifies our very basic disagreement.
                        >
                        > And congratulations on your "graduation:)!"
                        >
                        > Gordon Raynal
                        > Inman, SC
                      • Gordon Raynal
                        ... Hi again... well that calls for even more congratulations! I think the apocalyptic speech given placed on Jesus lips comes from the evangelists (and
                        Message 11 of 21 , Aug 2, 2008
                        • 0 Attachment
                          On Aug 1, 2008, at 2:09 PM, Dennis Goffin wrote:

                          > Hi Gordon,
                          > Which are the words you don't think Jesus said?
                          > Thanks for your congratulations, but I left University College
                          > Leicester over 50-odd years ago.
                          > Regards,
                          > Dennis Goffin BA Hons. French
                          > Chorleywood UK

                          Hi again... well that calls for even more congratulations!

                          I think the "apocalyptic speech" given placed on Jesus lips comes
                          from the evangelists (and maybe even that JTB speech piece). The
                          point of their focus on JTB and Jesus's utilizing this speech should
                          be clear enough after the R-J War. How to deal with that great
                          trauma could hardly be ignored and those resources of both Classical
                          Prophetic and Apocalyptic Prophetic materials provided rich fodder
                          for dealing with that trauma and framing what Jesus and friends were
                          up to in the late 20's in terms of it. Once more, that "what they
                          were up to" I think can best be described by Paul's words: "a
                          ministry of reconciliation." Or look at the Epistle of James for
                          "the Way of Wisdom in 3:17-18 and Paul's parallel "the Fruit of the
                          Spirit" in Galatians 5:22-26. Or look at the very opening of the
                          Didache... "The Way of Life" after the OT foundation is from the
                          aphoristic speech we find in Matthew's Sermon on the Mount and Luke's
                          Sermon on the Plain. The core ethical praxis language was presented
                          by Jesus in wisdom forms of communication. Even if one wants to
                          affirm Jesus also utilized apocalyptic speech, that speech was
                          secondary and not primary. Why say that? See the Sermon on the
                          Mount, Mark 4:33 ff, etc.

                          Now let me say to all, I actually love the genre of apocalyptic.
                          Artfully used it makes for terrific fodder for great literature and
                          great movies. Some of my favorites are Sci-Fi movies. So, please
                          don't think I don't like and appreciate the genre. I simply do not
                          think from the resources we have that this was Jesus' speech. I
                          think that was wisdom speech and that the apocalyptic genre was used
                          by his interpreters to frame and interpret that speech later on. But
                          then there were other framings and interpretive tacks used, as well.
                          And the interesting thing about the broad use of apocalyptic is that
                          it required re-interpretation and we see this across the four
                          Canonical Gospels that we have and then outside in later Christian
                          resources.

                          Gordon Raynal
                          Inman, SC

                          >
                        • Dennis Goffin
                          Quite simply, Gordon, how would you explain Matthew 16.27/8 ? For my part I endorse everything that Jack has written. Dennis Goffin Chorleywood, UK ... From:
                          Message 12 of 21 , Aug 2, 2008
                          • 0 Attachment
                            Quite simply, Gordon, how would you explain Matthew 16.27/8 ? For my part I endorse everything that Jack has written.
                            Dennis Goffin
                            Chorleywood, UK





                            ----- Original Message -----
                            From: Gordon Raynal
                            To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                            Cc: Michael Ensley
                            Sent: Saturday, August 02, 2008 5:08 PM
                            Subject: Re: [XTalk] Re: Paul's silence on Jesus as miracle worker



                            On Aug 1, 2008, at 2:09 PM, Dennis Goffin wrote:

                            > Hi Gordon,
                            > Which are the words you don't think Jesus said?
                            > Thanks for your congratulations, but I left University College
                            > Leicester over 50-odd years ago.
                            > Regards,
                            > Dennis Goffin BA Hons. French
                            > Chorleywood UK

                            Hi again... well that calls for even more congratulations!

                            I think the "apocalyptic speech" given placed on Jesus lips comes
                            from the evangelists (and maybe even that JTB speech piece). The
                            point of their focus on JTB and Jesus's utilizing this speech should
                            be clear enough after the R-J War. How to deal with that great
                            trauma could hardly be ignored and those resources of both Classical
                            Prophetic and Apocalyptic Prophetic materials provided rich fodder
                            for dealing with that trauma and framing what Jesus and friends were
                            up to in the late 20's in terms of it. Once more, that "what they
                            were up to" I think can best be described by Paul's words: "a
                            ministry of reconciliation." Or look at the Epistle of James for
                            "the Way of Wisdom in 3:17-18 and Paul's parallel "the Fruit of the
                            Spirit" in Galatians 5:22-26. Or look at the very opening of the
                            Didache... "The Way of Life" after the OT foundation is from the
                            aphoristic speech we find in Matthew's Sermon on the Mount and Luke's
                            Sermon on the Plain. The core ethical praxis language was presented
                            by Jesus in wisdom forms of communication. Even if one wants to
                            affirm Jesus also utilized apocalyptic speech, that speech was
                            secondary and not primary. Why say that? See the Sermon on the
                            Mount, Mark 4:33 ff, etc.

                            Now let me say to all, I actually love the genre of apocalyptic.
                            Artfully used it makes for terrific fodder for great literature and
                            great movies. Some of my favorites are Sci-Fi movies. So, please
                            don't think I don't like and appreciate the genre. I simply do not
                            think from the resources we have that this was Jesus' speech. I
                            think that was wisdom speech and that the apocalyptic genre was used
                            by his interpreters to frame and interpret that speech later on. But
                            then there were other framings and interpretive tacks used, as well.
                            And the interesting thing about the broad use of apocalyptic is that
                            it required re-interpretation and we see this across the four
                            Canonical Gospels that we have and then outside in later Christian
                            resources.

                            Gordon Raynal
                            Inman, SC

                            >




                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                          • Gordon Raynal
                            Jack, I want to thank you for this long and helpful note. While we obviously disagree about how to best understand the historical fellow named Jesus son of
                            Message 13 of 21 , Aug 2, 2008
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                              Jack,

                              I want to thank you for this long and helpful note. While we
                              obviously disagree about how to best understand the historical fellow
                              named Jesus son of Joseph(?) and Mary, this sort of study is, of
                              course vital to understanding part of the broader context of the
                              times. I, of course, think that there were many who took to Jesus
                              who centrally worked from and espoused what you are laying out in
                              these resources. You get no argument about that from me. Indeed
                              (and let me once more borrow Paul's phrase) a real "ministry of
                              reconciliation" would aim at bringing diverse folk together, right?
                              I simply do not want to limit those who were attracted to follow
                              Jesus to the category of "apocalyptic" versus "non-apocalyptic."
                              First, I think the genre of apocalyptic can have many shades of
                              usage, as can the genre of wisdom speech. Second, I don't find it
                              overly helpful to "categorize" individuals just by this proposed
                              duality alone (as if this duality simply presents us with two clear
                              opposite camps). Third, I think "a ministry of reconciliation" aims
                              precisely at bringing diversity (and so diverse folks) together, and
                              hence pushing any supposed duality like this would be rather counter
                              productive to "the spirit" of the movement's very intent. This said,
                              let me simply also note about what both Matthew and Luke do with Mark
                              is not only access what you're providing as important frames to their
                              "Gospel of Jesus Christ" (and for Matthew most pointedly... Son of
                              Abraham, Son of David, Son of God, one like but greater than Moses
                              and Elijah, etc.... so also those "Sons of..."), but also add what?
                              Lots of wisdom speech. Accept Q or accept that Matthew had access to
                              more of these sayings and Luke copied from Matthew, both Matthew and
                              Luke round out their gospels with aphorisms and parables. At the end
                              of the day, and let us say that I am wrong about the wisdom speaker/
                              teacher/ sage being the best way to classify the historical fellow
                              Jesus in the late 20's, then **this speech** needs to be studied in
                              it's own right and in terms of the legacy of wisdom communication in
                              the Israelite scriptures, the post- Scriptural resources and then in
                              terms of the broader world of wisdom communication. And likewise
                              there is a bevy of materials from Israel's past to do just this. And
                              a good reading of such as Diogenes of Sinope won't hurt either.

                              So, thanks for this note. I find it very helpful, not to try to
                              focus on the fellow named Jesus, himself, but yes in terms of those
                              around him, those who surely were swept up on this small movement in
                              his lifetime and at least a good number of those who came on later on.

                              Gordon Raynal
                              Inman, SC
                              On Aug 2, 2008, at 11:42 AM, Jack Kilmon wrote:

                              > Dennis and Gordon:
                              >
                              > Forgive me for the length of this and also, asthe "follow the
                              > Aramaic" guy,
                              > for use of "Yeshua" instead of "Jesus."
                              >
                            • Gordon Raynal
                              Hi Dennis, ... Verse 27 has it s base in Mark 8:38, verse 28 in Mark 9:1. So, I think this is part of the language Mark created and was then redacted by both
                              Message 14 of 21 , Aug 3, 2008
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                                Hi Dennis,

                                On Aug 2, 2008, at 1:02 PM, Dennis Goffin wrote:

                                > Quite simply, Gordon, how would you explain Matthew 16.27/8 ? For
                                > my part I endorse everything that Jack has written.
                                > Dennis Goffin
                                > Chorleywood, UK

                                Verse 27 has it's base in Mark 8:38, verse 28 in Mark 9:1. So, I
                                think this is part of the language Mark created and was then redacted
                                by both Matthew and Luke to fit his characterization of Jesus Christ
                                as fulfilling that Daniel, Enoch expectation. So in a word this is a
                                Markan creation.

                                And for whom you endorse, I am glad you have found the stir of this
                                discussion helpful!

                                Gordon Raynal
                                Inman, SC
                                >
                              • Dennis Goffin
                                Are you then saying, Gordon, that for example Mark 9.1 is not the words of Jesus but merely a Markan creation ? If so, where do you stop ? And are you also not
                                Message 15 of 21 , Aug 3, 2008
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                                  Are you then saying, Gordon, that for example Mark 9.1 is not the words of Jesus but merely a Markan creation ? If so, where do you stop ? And are you also not opening the door for it to be said equally that your favoured "sage" passages are likewise later creations ? I would also like to make the point that many of the parables you prize as part of your "wisdom" approach are on the subject of apocalyptic eschatology.
                                  Dennis Goffin UK




                                  ----- Original Message -----
                                  From: Gordon Raynal
                                  To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                                  Cc: Michael Ensley
                                  Sent: Sunday, August 03, 2008 6:14 PM
                                  Subject: Re: [XTalk] Re: Paul's silence on Jesus as miracle worker


                                  Hi Dennis,

                                  On Aug 2, 2008, at 1:02 PM, Dennis Goffin wrote:

                                  > Quite simply, Gordon, how would you explain Matthew 16.27/8 ? For
                                  > my part I endorse everything that Jack has written.
                                  > Dennis Goffin
                                  > Chorleywood, UK

                                  Verse 27 has it's base in Mark 8:38, verse 28 in Mark 9:1. So, I
                                  think this is part of the language Mark created and was then redacted
                                  by both Matthew and Luke to fit his characterization of Jesus Christ
                                  as fulfilling that Daniel, Enoch expectation. So in a word this is a
                                  Markan creation.

                                  And for whom you endorse, I am glad you have found the stir of this
                                  discussion helpful!

                                  Gordon Raynal
                                  Inman, SC
                                  >




                                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                • Gordon Raynal
                                  Hi Dennis, ... Yes. But I don t like that word merely applied to fine creativity! ... I don t actually draw a precise line in the wisdom sayings themselves,
                                  Message 16 of 21 , Aug 6, 2008
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                                    Hi Dennis,
                                    On Aug 3, 2008, at 2:20 PM, Dennis Goffin wrote:

                                    > Are you then saying, Gordon, that for example Mark 9.1 is not the
                                    > words of Jesus but merely a Markan creation ?

                                    Yes. But I don't like that word "merely" applied to fine creativity!

                                    > If so, where do you stop ?

                                    I don't actually draw a precise line in the wisdom sayings
                                    themselves, if that is what you mean. I think the report that you
                                    find in the back of "The Five Gospels" is a fairly good listing of
                                    the words that belong to the man Jesus, although my list is a little
                                    longer. But actually I prefer to think not simply in terms of any of
                                    those particular sayings as being definitely from Jesus' own lips,
                                    but rather from the original wisdom banter (creativity) when Jesus
                                    was alive. I think the hallmark of Jesus' own creativity is found in
                                    those red and pink parables you will find noted in the 5 Gospels.
                                    But to give you a "for instance" of what I'm suggesting (and this can
                                    only be a guess, of course), but I can well imagine that Jesus
                                    might have told the parable of Good Sam and a hearer/ fellow banter
                                    partner, let's say Mary Magdalene or Peter, responding with the
                                    aphorism, "Love your enemies" and Jesus repeating that, "yes, love
                                    your enemies." I think this careful kind of "sayings study" can
                                    really only get us that close to Jesus.

                                    > And are you also not opening the door for it to be said equally
                                    > that your favoured "sage" passages are likewise later creations ?

                                    No doubt, it is possible. Such as Robert Price thinks the whole
                                    character of Jesus is an invention and he concludes whether or not
                                    there was a historical figure back there, the materials we have
                                    simply don't give us access to him. Nothing new in this position.
                                    I had lovely discussions with my Freshman history professor about
                                    just this in the early '70s. I, however, think that we can find that
                                    common mission agenda at the base of all of the resources we have and
                                    the constitutional language that surrounds it, hence I think we can
                                    find "the voice print" of the late 20's and in that "the voice print"
                                    of Jesus, himself. And again, those words are wisdom words.

                                    > I would also like to make the point that many of the parables you
                                    > prize as part of your "wisdom" approach are on the subject of
                                    > apocalyptic eschatology.

                                    A couple of points here. One, I do think we find parables that come
                                    from after Jesus included in the writings and that is just what I'd
                                    expect. Second, "apocalyptic" is a genre. How one understands and
                                    uses that genre is not simply "one way, implying one clear belief
                                    structure." I actually love the genre in both OT and NT. Just
                                    taught Daniel as part of a Spring SS class. Great book! And some of
                                    my favorite movies are rooted in the genre. But I do not believe
                                    that what Jesus and friends were up to for a very short time in the
                                    late 20's is appropriately defined as "a millennialist apocalyptic
                                    prophetic movement" as so many seem to think. Why? Because the
                                    program itself is not millennialist and I think we can show how
                                    apocalyptic writings and many other kinds of writings were used to
                                    interpret the base program at a later time. Read such as Burton
                                    Mack's book on Q or Kloppenborg's book on the layers of Q to see how
                                    prophetic and apocalyptic language was brought to bear in
                                    reinterpreting the original program. Said, "program" or "religio-
                                    social initiative," if you prefer, could be and was recast in a
                                    number of ways. We find tensions and conflicts in those recastings.
                                    And per my long note... a program/ initiative produced a bureaucracy.
                                    That always produces tensions, even in the most stable of times:)!
                                    And so, because of growing reflections after the death of Jesus,
                                    after the further movement growth (more people, more homes, more
                                    towns and more diversity in those homes and towns), after further
                                    social development and in terms of the rapidly changing times
                                    themselves, we find this scurrying all over not only the Israelite
                                    scriptures, but so also over cultural ideas and beliefs in more and
                                    more places. And so, yes, in all of this and in the continuing
                                    marvelous creativity that was ignited we find parables created that
                                    are inclusive of the apocalyptic genre and original wisdom genre
                                    parables reinterpreted with the apocalyptic genre thought. But
                                    remember we also find the very same materials reinterpreted in other
                                    manners. G. Thomas for me, like Q, can be broken apart in layers and
                                    there we see the progression from an original aphorisms and wisdom
                                    parables gathering to what 'd refer to as a spiritual/ meditative
                                    layer of interpretation and on towards an abstract philosophizing
                                    layer (I do not think it is appropriate to call G. Thomas "Gnostic,"
                                    but in that latter stage, perhaps "proto-Gnostic"). So there was
                                    also development of that variety.

                                    Hope this helps,

                                    Gordon Raynal
                                    Inman, SC
                                    Dennis Goffin UK
                                    >
                                    >
                                  • Ron Price
                                    ... Gordon, It seems to me that the JSem comes perilously close to circular reasoning on this issue. The fifth pillar of scholarly wisdom rejects an
                                    Message 17 of 21 , Aug 11, 2008
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                                      Gordon Raynal wrote:

                                      > The core ethical praxis language was presented
                                      > by Jesus in wisdom forms of communication. Even if one wants to
                                      > affirm Jesus also utilized apocalyptic speech, that speech was
                                      > secondary and not primary. Why say that? See the Sermon on the
                                      > Mount, Mark 4:33 ff, etc.

                                      Gordon,

                                      It seems to me that the JSem comes perilously close to circular reasoning on
                                      this issue. The 'fifth pillar of scholarly wisdom' rejects an eschatalogical
                                      Jesus, apparently before the completion of the source analysis. You appear
                                      to be doing the same here, for neither of your supporting texts (in their
                                      present form) go back before ca 70 CE when Mark was written - even worse if
                                      we take your own date for Mark!

                                      Bearing in mind that the Romans would have had no reason to crucify a mere
                                      wisdom teacher, I am curious to know if you have any better defence for your
                                      rejection of a primarily apocalyptic Jesus than quoting texts written at
                                      least 40 years after his death.

                                      Ron Price

                                      Derbyshire, UK

                                      Web site: http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/index.htm
                                    • Gordon Raynal
                                      ... Hi Ron, I ll let you take up the matter of circular reasoning with the Jesus Seminar. They are still alive and active and I seriously suggest that you
                                      Message 18 of 21 , Aug 11, 2008
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                                        On Aug 11, 2008, at 6:28 AM, Ron Price wrote:

                                        > Gordon Raynal wrote:
                                        >
                                        >> The core ethical praxis language was presented
                                        >> by Jesus in wisdom forms of communication. Even if one wants to
                                        >> affirm Jesus also utilized apocalyptic speech, that speech was
                                        >> secondary and not primary. Why say that? See the Sermon on the
                                        >> Mount, Mark 4:33 ff, etc.
                                        >
                                        > Gordon,
                                        >
                                        > It seems to me that the JSem comes perilously close to circular
                                        > reasoning on
                                        > this issue. The 'fifth pillar of scholarly wisdom' rejects an
                                        > eschatalogical
                                        > Jesus, apparently before the completion of the source analysis. You
                                        > appear
                                        > to be doing the same here, for neither of your supporting texts (in
                                        > their
                                        > present form) go back before ca 70 CE when Mark was written - even
                                        > worse if
                                        > we take your own date for Mark!

                                        Hi Ron,

                                        I'll let you take up the matter of "circular reasoning" with the
                                        Jesus Seminar. They are still alive and active and I seriously
                                        suggest that you present this subject to them.

                                        What I do want to comment about here is the need, as Crossan, for
                                        example, has talked about, for subject clarification as pertains to
                                        "eschatology" and related terms. We really need some language
                                        clarity in this conversation. "Eschatology" gets tossed about, as
                                        does "apocalyptic" (a genre term) by many as if, a.) that is the only
                                        kind of eschatology and b.) as a kind of eschatology it is a uniform
                                        belief structure. I think it would be most helpful if we could have
                                        some term clarification in this important arena of description.
                                        Hence the language of millenarian eschatology versus non-millenarian
                                        eschatology, as the basic frame of options. And then within those
                                        frames careful descriptions about how different pieces of literature
                                        nuance those major options. And then, with the use of the
                                        apocalyptic genre, how it is utilized and framed in relationship to
                                        other genres. I think these conversations often get very confusing
                                        as it is not entirely clear what a given person is affirming when
                                        they use such terms as "eschatological" and "apocalyptic."

                                        I don't have time today to spell out this analysis in full, but I
                                        will again simply say here, I do not believe that the mission program
                                        that we find laid out and then repeated or commented on in a number
                                        of sources (Q, Thomas, Paul, Mark, Matthew, Luke, Didache and
                                        indirectly in John) is itself "a millenniest" or "apocalyptic"
                                        program, but rather one that had a very "here and now" focus in it's
                                        foundation and expectation. And it is one that we see commented
                                        upon, developed, given rationale and filled out with more theological
                                        and ethical reflection from a number of different resources. And
                                        with this, the core speech that I can attribute to Jesus and his
                                        associates is wisdom speech. Wisdom speech is non-millennarian, but
                                        then it may be framed by millennarian thought and so utilized in that
                                        theological manner. In regard to the original program, I think the
                                        core motivation and expectation is well defined in that term Paul
                                        uses, "reconciliation." In terms of said original program (and not
                                        the later framing of it... hence the careful need to differentiate
                                        the original and the elaborations on top of the original) the "what
                                        to do" if rejected, is as "here and now" as one can state it (words
                                        about what to do if the householders don't receive the peace: "let
                                        your peace return to you," and what to do "the sent one's" only find
                                        rejection: "shake the dust off and move on." That the program came
                                        to be framed in a number of ways out of the broad resources found in
                                        the TANAK, should come as no surprise. And let me just emphasize
                                        this: If a reconciliation movement actually works, unlike a partisan
                                        movement that is built upon the gathering of like minded or closely
                                        similar minded folks, then what one will surely expect is that said
                                        reconciliation movement will have a number of voices/ viewpoints/
                                        sectarian views therein. As said movement moves from a first
                                        generation action plan to an enduring movement complete with a
                                        growing bureaucracy and therefore greater number of defined roles,
                                        power structures and rationales, then one should expect to find in
                                        such a mixed movement a variety of ideas about roles, power,
                                        rationales, etc. And do we find this? Yes, indeed we do. And
                                        because we can find these sorts of things it is possible to sketch
                                        out what was key and core and some of the developments therein.
                                        >
                                        > Bearing in mind that the Romans would have had no reason to crucify
                                        > a mere
                                        > wisdom teacher, I am curious to know if you have any better defence
                                        > for your
                                        > rejection of a primarily apocalyptic Jesus than quoting texts
                                        > written at
                                        > least 40 years after his death.

                                        You state this as if it is a truism. Two things. Let me remind you,
                                        if you do not know, that the stories tell us that Aesop was tossed
                                        off a cliff for the telling of his fables. "Mere wisdom teacher"
                                        makes it sound as if this is a generically safe activity that would
                                        never rise to the level of making for real trouble. About that
                                        alone, I disagree. But more importantly this view leaves out the
                                        very connection of the wisdom speech and "the reconciliation
                                        program." Need I remind you of the danger of actual reconciliation
                                        movements in this world? Seriously... just run the list in the last
                                        century of those who came to espouse serious reconciliation work and
                                        so consider this list of names: Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr.,
                                        Malcolm X, Anwar Sadat, Yitzak Rabin, Nelson Mandella (the only one
                                        only to have to spend years in jail). In the face of authoritarian
                                        regimes or very discordant times in particular places, those who
                                        espouse reconciliation are hardly doing safe work. And if you go
                                        down this list, one thing that is notable is that such persons often
                                        arouse great enmity by doing reconciliation work within "their own
                                        people." Just taking Malcolm X, as an example, he had a life
                                        changing experience by going to Mecca and left fiery rhetoric behind
                                        and was killed by some loyal to those who considered him a champion.

                                        And to your closing point. I would simply invite you to do a careful
                                        study of what organized activity Jesus was asking his followers to do
                                        and a careful outlaying of the different stages of the development
                                        therein that we can isolate. This isn't "a circular" invitation, but
                                        an invitation to define an original core and differentiate as best
                                        you can the stages of development you can find. And even if you
                                        conclude that the original core is best described as a millennialist
                                        program, I'll still invite you to focus on that wisdom language
                                        **as** wisdom language and consider the place/ role/ function/
                                        meaning of that language in relationship to the program.

                                        Gordon Raynal
                                        Inman, SC
                                        >
                                        > Ron Price
                                        >
                                        > Derbyshire, UK
                                        >
                                        > Web site: http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/index.htm
                                        >
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