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

Re: [XTalk] XTalk on Peter: Questions

Expand Messages
  • Gordon Raynal
    ... Bob and all, This renewed discussion about Peter has led me to muse about a series of what I believe are essential questions to get at the matter of the
    Message 1 of 9 , May 5 11:40 AM
    • 0 Attachment
      >>
      >> To conclude, I need to state clearly that in my judgment the evidence
      >> argues strongly for the fact that Mark is anti-Peter, at least
      >> "anti" the
      >> Peter of his drama, the surrogate, along with the Twelve, for Mark's
      >> opponents. Peter's denial, as well as Peter's confession and Jesus'
      >> denunciation of him as Satan, are fictitious creations of Mark.
      >> There is
      >> no convincing evidence that the historical Peter ever denied
      >> Jesus. Nor is
      >> there any convincing evidence that the historical Peter ever
      >> proclaimed
      >> the historical Jesus as "the Christ."
      >
      > If I understand him correctly, what Weeden seems to be claiming is
      > that
      > Mark constructed a straw man (Peter) saying things that Mark made
      > up, that
      > Mark then proceeds to demolish. The only catch here is that Jesus
      > and Peter
      > are not two characters in a Greek play, but two important
      > personalities
      > that Mark and his audience take to be real people. So if it sounds
      > like I
      > am skeptical of Weeden's presentation, I am. But Ted and I have
      > sparred
      > numerous times before on this list, and usually with the same
      > result (you
      > will note that I have copied him in this response; he is used to
      > hearing my
      > POV.)
      >
      > So anyone interested in this can review our archives on this
      > subject. I'll
      > be reviewing it myself.
      >
      > Bob Schacht
      > University of Hawaii

      Bob and all,
      This renewed discussion about Peter has led me to muse about a series
      of what I believe are essential questions to get at the matter of the
      early proclamation of the Jesus and his followers, and so to the
      various character's roles and stances in the movement(s) that
      followed Jesus. Perhaps others might be interested in pondering them.

      1. What was the originating proclamation (messaging) of the
      community? What was it about?
      2. What social formation did the proclamation entail? What were the
      central practices?
      3. Who were the participants?
      4. What were the essential tasks and what were the essential roles of
      community maintenance/ advancement? What was the original leadership
      structure?
      5. Are there various takes on the aforementioned? (How much
      diversity was there in message, social formation, practices, tasks,
      roles, leadership? When? Where? By Whom?)
      6. How did the original proclamation and the various takes change
      over time? (What tracing can be done?)


      Gordon Raynal
      Inman, SC
      >


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Bob Schacht
      ... Gordon, Thank you for a very interesting set of questions! ... When you say originating proclamation , I think we have to distinguish a number of phases
      Message 2 of 9 , May 6 1:12 AM
      • 0 Attachment
        At 08:40 AM 5/5/2009, Gordon Raynal wrote:
        > >>
        > >> To conclude, I need to state clearly that in my judgment the evidence
        > >> argues strongly for the fact that Mark is anti-Peter, at least "anti" the
        > >> Peter of his drama, the surrogate, along with the Twelve, for Mark's
        > >> opponents. Peter's denial, as well as Peter's confession and Jesus'
        > >> denunciation of him as Satan, are fictitious creations of Mark.
        > >> There is no convincing evidence that the historical Peter ever denied
        > >> Jesus. Nor is there any convincing evidence that the historical Peter
        > ever
        > >> proclaimed the historical Jesus as "the Christ."
        > >
        > > If I understand him correctly, what Weeden seems to be claiming is that
        > > Mark constructed a straw man (Peter) saying things that Mark made up,
        > > that Mark then proceeds to demolish. The only catch here is that Jesus
        > > and Peter are not two characters in a Greek play, but two important
        > > personalities that Mark and his audience take to be real people.
        > > So if it sounds like I am skeptical of Weeden's presentation, I am.
        > > But Ted and I have sparred numerous times before on this list,
        > > and usually with the same result (you will note that I have copied him
        > > in this response; he is used to hearing my POV.)
        > >
        > > So anyone interested in this can review our archives on this
        > > subject. I'll be reviewing it myself.
        > >
        > > Bob Schacht
        > > University of Hawaii
        >
        >Bob and all,
        >This renewed discussion about Peter has led me to muse about a series
        >of what I believe are essential questions to get at the matter of the
        >early proclamation of the Jesus and his followers, and so to the
        >various character's roles and stances in the movement(s) that
        >followed Jesus. Perhaps others might be interested in pondering them.

        Gordon,
        Thank you for a very interesting set of questions!


        >1. What was the originating proclamation (messaging) of the
        >community? What was it about?

        When you say "originating proclamation", I think we have to distinguish a
        number of phases between the crucifixion and Paul's earliest known letters.
        * Phase I: The immediate aftermath of the Crucifixion (approximately
        Acts 1-5). The originating proclamation here is somewhat like the "stump
        speech" of a politician.
        * Phase II: Peter goes on the road, shifts the proclamation. As Tom
        Kopacek observed, the confrontation with Simon Magus was monumental.
        Peter's stock speech is challenged, and he is offered a deal. This phase
        corresponds approximately with Acts 8-11. The originating proclamation is
        now being subjected to a "road test" in new environments with new
        audiences, and has to be revised. However, the road test is still somewhat
        localized. It may be that this phase culminated with Peter's Galilean
        imprisonment.
        * Phase III: Peter collides with Paul (In Jerusalem [Acts 15: Gal 1:18;
        2:1-10]; The incident in Antioch [Galatians 2:11-21]. The originating
        proclamation now has to deal with things like circumcision. We know a lot
        more about Paul's side of this phase than we know of Peter, but I suspect
        that there's a lot more to this phase than is now known (to me, anyway).
        The next phase is marked apparently by the distribution of the Gospel of
        Mark. IIRC, Ted Weeden, in his article in our Yahoo group files, tries to
        make the case that GMark is actually an anti-Petrine diatribe based on two
        different understandings of the originating proclamation: Peter's, and
        Mark's (or whoever the author of GMark was).

        BTW, in what I wrote above, I do not necessarily believe in the literal
        historicity of each little bit of Acts and Galatians. I think the phases I
        have outlined make a good bit of sense out of the evolution of the
        originating proclamation. However, I am willing to be convinced otherwise.

        I'll have to let you kick this around a bit because I don't have the time
        right now to follow up any further. But I want to come back later to your
        other interesting questions.

        Bob Schacht


        >2. What social formation did the proclamation entail? What were the
        >central practices?
        >3. Who were the participants?
        >4. What were the essential tasks and what were the essential roles of
        >community maintenance/ advancement? What was the original leadership
        >structure?
        >5. Are there various takes on the aforementioned? (How much
        >diversity was there in message, social formation, practices, tasks,
        >roles, leadership? When? Where? By Whom?)
        >6. How did the original proclamation and the various takes change
        >over time? (What tracing can be done?)
        >
        >
        >Gordon Raynal
        >Inman, SC
        > >
        >
        >
        >[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, Thanks for your reply and your kind words. I m very busy this morning and into the afternoon, but I will get back to you and all. I both want to
        Message 3 of 9 , May 6 7:59 AM
        • 0 Attachment
          Hi Bob,
          Thanks for your reply and your kind words. I'm very busy this
          morning and into the afternoon, but I will get back to you and all.
          I both want to respond to your specific proposal and offer another
          that will show a different way of framing the issue and issues. I
          think this might make for some interesting conversation.
          Gordon Raynal
          Inman, SC
          On May 6, 2009, at 4:12 AM, Bob Schacht wrote:

          > At 08:40 AM 5/5/2009, Gordon Raynal wrote:
          >>>>
          >>>> To conclude, I need to state clearly that in my judgment the
          >>>> evidence
          >>>> argues strongly for the fact that Mark is anti-Peter, at least
          >>>> "anti" the
          >>>> Peter of his drama, the surrogate, along with the Twelve, for
          >>>> Mark's
          >>>> opponents. Peter's denial, as well as Peter's confession and Jesus'
          >>>> denunciation of him as Satan, are fictitious creations of Mark.
          >>>> There is no convincing evidence that the historical Peter ever
          >>>> denied
          >>>> Jesus. Nor is there any convincing evidence that the historical
          >>>> Peter
          >> ever
          >>>> proclaimed the historical Jesus as "the Christ."
          >>>
          >>> If I understand him correctly, what Weeden seems to be claiming
          >>> is that
          >>> Mark constructed a straw man (Peter) saying things that Mark made
          >>> up,
          >>> that Mark then proceeds to demolish. The only catch here is that
          >>> Jesus
          >>> and Peter are not two characters in a Greek play, but two important
          >>> personalities that Mark and his audience take to be real people.
          >>> So if it sounds like I am skeptical of Weeden's presentation, I am.
          >>> But Ted and I have sparred numerous times before on this list,
          >>> and usually with the same result (you will note that I have
          >>> copied him
          >>> in this response; he is used to hearing my POV.)
          >>>
          >>> So anyone interested in this can review our archives on this
          >>> subject. I'll be reviewing it myself.
          >>>
          >>> Bob Schacht
          >>> University of Hawaii
          >>
          >> Bob and all,
          >> This renewed discussion about Peter has led me to muse about a series
          >> of what I believe are essential questions to get at the matter of the
          >> early proclamation of the Jesus and his followers, and so to the
          >> various character's roles and stances in the movement(s) that
          >> followed Jesus. Perhaps others might be interested in pondering them.
          >
          > Gordon,
          > Thank you for a very interesting set of questions!
          >
          >
          >> 1. What was the originating proclamation (messaging) of the
          >> community? What was it about?
          >
          > When you say "originating proclamation", I think we have to
          > distinguish a
          > number of phases between the crucifixion and Paul's earliest known
          > letters.
          > * Phase I: The immediate aftermath of the Crucifixion
          > (approximately
          > Acts 1-5). The originating proclamation here is somewhat like the
          > "stump
          > speech" of a politician.
          > * Phase II: Peter goes on the road, shifts the proclamation. As
          > Tom
          > Kopacek observed, the confrontation with Simon Magus was monumental.
          > Peter's stock speech is challenged, and he is offered a deal. This
          > phase
          > corresponds approximately with Acts 8-11. The originating
          > proclamation is
          > now being subjected to a "road test" in new environments with new
          > audiences, and has to be revised. However, the road test is still
          > somewhat
          > localized. It may be that this phase culminated with Peter's Galilean
          > imprisonment.
          > * Phase III: Peter collides with Paul (In Jerusalem [Acts 15:
          > Gal 1:18;
          > 2:1-10]; The incident in Antioch [Galatians 2:11-21]. The originating
          > proclamation now has to deal with things like circumcision. We know
          > a lot
          > more about Paul's side of this phase than we know of Peter, but I
          > suspect
          > that there's a lot more to this phase than is now known (to me,
          > anyway).
          > The next phase is marked apparently by the distribution of the
          > Gospel of
          > Mark. IIRC, Ted Weeden, in his article in our Yahoo group files,
          > tries to
          > make the case that GMark is actually an anti-Petrine diatribe based
          > on two
          > different understandings of the originating proclamation: Peter's, and
          > Mark's (or whoever the author of GMark was).
          >
          > BTW, in what I wrote above, I do not necessarily believe in the
          > literal
          > historicity of each little bit of Acts and Galatians. I think the
          > phases I
          > have outlined make a good bit of sense out of the evolution of the
          > originating proclamation. However, I am willing to be convinced
          > otherwise.
          >
          > I'll have to let you kick this around a bit because I don't have
          > the time
          > right now to follow up any further. But I want to come back later
          > to your
          > other interesting questions.
          >
          > Bob Schacht
          >
          >
          >> 2. What social formation did the proclamation entail? What were the
          >> central practices?
          >> 3. Who were the participants?
          >> 4. What were the essential tasks and what were the essential roles of
          >> community maintenance/ advancement? What was the original leadership
          >> structure?
          >> 5. Are there various takes on the aforementioned? (How much
          >> diversity was there in message, social formation, practices, tasks,
          >> roles, leadership? When? Where? By Whom?)
          >> 6. How did the original proclamation and the various takes change
          >> over time? (What tracing can be done?)
          >>
          >>
          >> Gordon Raynal
          >> Inman, SC
          >>>
          >>
          >>
          >> [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]
          >
          >
          >
          > ------------------------------------
          >
          > 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
          >
          >
          >
        • Gordon Raynal
          Hi Bob, In similar fashion to your post on the first question, below you ll find my proposal which goes at this in another way. For this email I ll simply
          Message 4 of 9 , May 6 3:22 PM
          • 0 Attachment
            Hi Bob,

            In similar fashion to your post on the first question, below you'll
            find my proposal which goes at this in another way. For this email
            I'll simply list the proposal below yours:

            On May 6, 2009, at 4:12 AM, Bob Schacht wrote:

            >>
            >>
            >> Bob and all,
            >> This renewed discussion about Peter has led me to muse about a series
            >> of what I believe are essential questions to get at the matter of the
            >> early proclamation of the Jesus and his followers, and so to the
            >> various character's roles and stances in the movement(s) that
            >> followed Jesus. Perhaps others might be interested in pondering them.
            >
            > Gordon,
            > Thank you for a very interesting set of questions!
            >
            >
            >> 1. What was the originating proclamation (messaging) of the
            >> community? What was it about?
            >
            > When you say "originating proclamation", I think we have to
            > distinguish a
            > number of phases between the crucifixion and Paul's earliest known
            > letters.
            > * Phase I: The immediate aftermath of the Crucifixion
            > (approximately
            > Acts 1-5). The originating proclamation here is somewhat like the
            > "stump
            > speech" of a politician.
            > * Phase II: Peter goes on the road, shifts the proclamation. As
            > Tom
            > Kopacek observed, the confrontation with Simon Magus was monumental.
            > Peter's stock speech is challenged, and he is offered a deal. This
            > phase
            > corresponds approximately with Acts 8-11. The originating
            > proclamation is
            > now being subjected to a "road test" in new environments with new
            > audiences, and has to be revised. However, the road test is still
            > somewhat
            > localized. It may be that this phase culminated with Peter's Galilean
            > imprisonment.
            > * Phase III: Peter collides with Paul (In Jerusalem [Acts 15:
            > Gal 1:18;
            > 2:1-10]; The incident in Antioch [Galatians 2:11-21]. The originating
            > proclamation now has to deal with things like circumcision. We know
            > a lot
            > more about Paul's side of this phase than we know of Peter, but I
            > suspect
            > that there's a lot more to this phase than is now known (to me,
            > anyway).
            > The next phase is marked apparently by the distribution of the
            > Gospel of
            > Mark. IIRC, Ted Weeden, in his article in our Yahoo group files,
            > tries to
            > make the case that GMark is actually an anti-Petrine diatribe based
            > on two
            > different understandings of the originating proclamation: Peter's, and
            > Mark's (or whoever the author of GMark was).
            >
            > BTW, in what I wrote above, I do not necessarily believe in the
            > literal
            > historicity of each little bit of Acts and Galatians. I think the
            > phases I
            > have outlined make a good bit of sense out of the evolution of the
            > originating proclamation. However, I am willing to be convinced
            > otherwise.
            >
            > I'll have to let you kick this around a bit because I don't have
            > the time
            > right now to follow up any further. But I want to come back later
            > to your
            > other interesting questions.
            >
            > Bob Schacht

            Question One: What was the original proclamation (messaging) of the
            community? What was it about?

            Phase I text? The Q1 Mission Program found in extant Luke 10:3-11.
            Message: "say to them, The Kingdom of God has come near to you."
            And so this program was at core about (per the directives of the
            aforementioned), peace (shalom) declaration, shared table fellowship
            (which, of course is
            inclusive of the conversations), and "healing" in homes. Where "the
            peace" was received and shared, then there would be another home on
            the map to make
            up a network of peace/ reconciliation places/ families & friends.

            The obvious difference between our proposals is you look to
            "preaching" about the significance of Jesus after he died as central
            to the originating messaging, whereas I propose the social praxis of
            "Kingdom of God" sharing while Jesus was quite alive as "the
            original" and "originating" proclamation.

            The texts that show the continuation of this proclamation reach from
            Jesus time all the way up to the production of the extant Didache.
            Paul ranks "the apostoloi" as first in his ranking of "offices." In
            I Cor. 9 he speaks about this mission praxis in relationship to
            defending his apostleship. Once we get to Mark (my proposed date of
            about 80 to 85 C.E., but however earlier you want to place it) this
            originating mission is framed as the organized mission for 6 original
            apostle pairs. Matthew will follow suit. Luke will later double the
            mission espousal to the mission of the 12 and then the 70/72. And in
            the full Didache we find the talk about how to deal with these
            apostoloi (how long they can stay, what they can ask for, if they
            need to get a job!).

            Regarding Acts for this short note, I would point you to the way Acts
            closes in 28:30-31: "He (Paul) lived there two whole years at his
            own expense (note... he did get a job!) and welcomed all who came to
            him, proclaiming ***the kingdom of God*** and teaching about the Lord
            Jesus Christ with all boldness and without hindrance." Back to Paul,
            in II Cor. 5 he uses the summary language of "a ministry of
            reconciliation" to describe what all of this was about.

            So, my counter proposal to you and all is that it is best to start
            with the proclamation in word and deed about "the Kingdom of God" as
            the way to figure out the originating proclamation and not the so
            called sermons about how Jesus fit into all of this from after his
            death. I think it is a separate question about the development of of
            the development of all the symbolic communication that was raised up
            about Jesus. I would suggest we can track that a bit in the earliest
            days, but not by working backwards from Acts, but rather by working
            from Paul's letters in relationship to the saying of Jesus about the
            Kingdom of God. For that task I think the key texts to start with
            are the salutation texts in Paul's authentic letters and then his
            brief formula that he cites in I Cor. 15:3-4.

            Working from this base, you will understand that my approach to the
            rest of the questions on the list will follow through on looking at
            the continuity and the change as the movement spread and was more
            inclusive. So, I invite you and all to consider this approach.

            Gordon Raynal
            Inman, SC

            >
            >


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Bob Schacht
            ... [snip] ... Gordon, You are quite right to remind me about Q, and the core rituals of communion that helped to sustain the fellowship of believers. But I
            Message 5 of 9 , May 7 1:07 AM
            • 0 Attachment
              At 12:22 PM 5/6/2009, Gordon Raynal wrote:
              >Hi Bob,
              >
              >In similar fashion to your post on the first question, below you'll
              >find my proposal which goes at this in another way. For this email
              >I'll simply list the proposal below yours:
              >

              [snip]

              >Question One: What was the original proclamation (messaging) of the
              >community? What was it about?
              >
              >Phase I text? The Q1 Mission Program found in extant Luke 10:3-11.
              >Message: "say to them, The Kingdom of God has come near to you."
              >And so this program was at core about (per the directives of the
              >aforementioned), peace (shalom) declaration, shared table fellowship
              >(which, of course is
              >inclusive of the conversations), and "healing" in homes. Where "the
              >peace" was received and shared, then there would be another home on
              >the map to make
              >up a network of peace/ reconciliation places/ families & friends.

              Gordon,
              You are quite right to remind me about Q, and the core rituals of communion
              that helped to sustain the fellowship of believers. But I have trouble
              seeing in that the "originating proclamation." I thought you were asking
              about evangelism, but it sounds like all you have in mind is a quiet
              network of friends. What you describe sounds like a bunch of Quakers :-)

              Social praxis is important, but I think it follows rather than leads. Acts,
              of course, is not silent on social praxis: we have the famous passages in
              Acts 2,
              42 They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and fellowship, to the
              breaking of bread and the prayers.
              43 Awe came upon everyone, because many wonders and signs were being done
              by the apostles.
              44 All who believed were together and had all things in common;
              45 they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the
              proceeds to all, as any had need.
              46 Day by day, as they spent much time together in the temple, they broke
              bread at home and ate their food with glad and generous hearts,
              47 praising God and having the goodwill of all the people. And day by day
              the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.

              And Acts 4,
              32 Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul,
              and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything
              they owned was held in common.
              33 With great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection
              of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all.
              34 There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or
              houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold.
              35 They laid it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to each as
              any had need.
              36 There was a Levite, a native of Cyprus, Joseph, to whom the apostles
              gave the name Barnabas (which means "son of encouragement").
              37 He sold a field that belonged to him, then brought the money, and laid
              it at the apostles' feet.



              >The obvious difference between our proposals is you look to
              >"preaching" about the significance of Jesus after he died as central
              >to the originating messaging, whereas I propose the social praxis of
              >"Kingdom of God" sharing while Jesus was quite alive as "the
              >original" and "originating" proclamation.

              You are changing my question, because rather than starting from the
              crucifixion, you want to start with Jesus. Furthermore, you change the
              nature of "proclamation" from an act of speech to a set of behaviors.

              I thought that when you were asking about the "originating proclamation"
              that you were asking, What was the "good news" that propelled the followers
              of Jesus and gave them an increasingly distinctive character from the time
              of the Crucifixion to the establishment of Paul's churches? But now it
              appears that you had something quite different in mind.

              Acts tells us more. The surviving fellowship of followers became charismatic--
              The act of Pentecost was billed as the watershed at the beginning of the
              first chapter:
              4 While staying with them, [Jesus] ordered them not to leave Jerusalem, but
              to wait there for the promise of the Father. "This," he said, "is what you
              have heard from me;
              5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy
              Spirit not many days from now."

              And after pentecost, the fellowship became characterized by baptism in the
              Holy Spirit
              Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you;
              and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to
              the ends of the earth."

              Acts 2:1 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one
              place.
              2 And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent
              wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting.
              3 Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested
              on each of them.
              4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in
              other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.

              Peter appeals to the prophet Joel about the Holy Spirit in 2:16-18 in
              another one of his reported orations, concluding
              with another appeal to the HS in 2:33.
              -- and now this might be important:
              37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter
              and to the other apostles, "Brothers, what should we do?"
              38 Peter said to them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the
              name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will
              receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
              39 For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far
              away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to him."

              So Peter may have preached the Resurrection, but when people asked him what
              to do, he had a simple formula:
              * Repent
              * Be baptized
              * Receive the gift of the HS
              This is interesting because Jesus himself never seems to have placed much
              emphasis on anyone getting baptized other than himself, and the "gift of
              the HS" in Acts has little precedent in the Gospels. But it does seem to
              play a big role in the fellowship of the followers of Jesus after
              Pentecost. It played such a big role that Paul had to figure out how to
              deal with it, years later. It had become so established that he couldn't
              just ban it.

              Now, I did not stress these matters in my proposal because I understood
              "originating proclamation" to have been about *words,* and Peter seems to
              have been the prime purveyor of words until Paul got going. But social
              praxis must have been in the mix, too, in Phase I even, because of the
              communalism described at the end of Acts 2 & 4 (but seldom thereafter), and
              the emphasis on the gifts of the Holy Spirit-- manifested especially in
              healing.

              Where do you see the words emphasizing the Kingdom of God, other than in
              the passage from Luke?



              >The texts that show the continuation of this proclamation reach from
              >Jesus time all the way up to the production of the extant Didache.

              You lose me on the referent for "this," and yes, I do think the Didache is
              important.

              >Paul ranks "the apostoloi" as first in his ranking of "offices." In
              >I Cor. 9 he speaks about this mission praxis in relationship to
              >defending his apostleship.

              Paul's apostleship, as described in the letters and Acts, belongs to my
              Phase III. What was the "originating proclamation" in the intervening decades?

              I have rattled on enough, I think, to flesh out our differences somewhat.
              Enough for tonight.

              Thanks,
              Bob

              >Once we get to Mark (my proposed date of
              >about 80 to 85 C.E., but however earlier you want to place it) this
              >originating mission is framed as the organized mission for 6 original
              >apostle pairs. Matthew will follow suit. Luke will later double the
              >mission espousal to the mission of the 12 and then the 70/72. And in
              >the full Didache we find the talk about how to deal with these
              >apostoloi (how long they can stay, what they can ask for, if they
              >need to get a job!).
              >
              >Regarding Acts for this short note, I would point you to the way Acts
              >closes in 28:30-31: "He (Paul) lived there two whole years at his
              >own expense (note... he did get a job!) and welcomed all who came to
              >him, proclaiming ***the kingdom of God*** and teaching about the Lord
              >Jesus Christ with all boldness and without hindrance." Back to Paul,
              >in II Cor. 5 he uses the summary language of "a ministry of
              >reconciliation" to describe what all of this was about.
              >
              >So, my counter proposal to you and all is that it is best to start
              >with the proclamation in word and deed about "the Kingdom of God" as
              >the way to figure out the originating proclamation and not the so
              >called sermons about how Jesus fit into all of this from after his
              >death. I think it is a separate question about the development of of
              >the development of all the symbolic communication that was raised up
              >about Jesus. I would suggest we can track that a bit in the earliest
              >days, but not by working backwards from Acts, but rather by working
              >from Paul's letters in relationship to the saying of Jesus about the
              >Kingdom of God. For that task I think the key texts to start with
              >are the salutation texts in Paul's authentic letters and then his
              >brief formula that he cites in I Cor. 15:3-4.
              >
              >Working from this base, you will understand that my approach to the
              >rest of the questions on the list will follow through on looking at
              >the continuity and the change as the movement spread and was more
              >inclusive. So, I invite you and all to consider this approach.
              >
              >Gordon Raynal
              >Inman, SC
              >
              > >
              > >
              >
              >
              >[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, to shorten, I ll cut out my note and work from yours: ... I am talking about the euangelion! And precisely what I m suggesting is that this is best
              Message 6 of 9 , May 7 6:50 AM
              • 0 Attachment
                Hi Bob,

                to shorten, I'll cut out my note and work from yours:
                On May 7, 2009, at 4:07 AM, Bob Schacht wrote:

                >
                >
                > Gordon,
                > You are quite right to remind me about Q, and the core rituals of
                > communion
                > that helped to sustain the fellowship of believers. But I have trouble
                > seeing in that the "originating proclamation." I thought you were
                > asking
                > about evangelism, but it sounds like all you have in mind is a quiet
                > network of friends. What you describe sounds like a bunch of
                > Quakers :-)

                I am talking about the euangelion! And precisely what I'm suggesting
                is that this is best understood not as a set of ideas about Jesus
                (and the NT, of course will talk about Jesus in relationship to all
                sorts of ideas/ provide all kinds of titles and descriptions based in
                various OT models), but the euangelion is about the presence of God's
                rule which evokes acts, practices and beliefs. The place to see the
                collection of ethos markers, what I like to refer to as mottos, is in
                such texts as Galatians 5:22-26, James 3:17-18, and the opening of
                the Didache, "The way of life." (noting the positive ethos markers.
                Paul, James and the Didache also list their opposites).

                It makes me smile that you describe these folks like Quakers! Not a
                bad analogy actually. These folks overall were quite known as
                pacifists for the first 300 years or so. Only when Christianity
                became a state religion did that start to change!
                >
                > Social praxis is important, but I think it follows rather than leads.

                I told you I was offering an alternate proposal and this sentence
                nicely sums the difference in approach. It is very interesting that
                Christian proclamation has become focused as being idea driven
                (gnostic?). I would simply ask you to note such sentences as the one
                Mark will place on the lips of Jesus to inaugurate his proclamation,
                Jesus' very first words in Mark: 1:15 "The time is fulfilled, and
                the kingdom of God has come near, repent, and believe in the good
                news." Note the word "repent" comes first! Methinks the great
                tradition of confessing one's sins rather has to do with behavioral
                and ideational change:)!

                > Acts,
                > of course, is not silent on social praxis: we have the famous
                > passages in
                > Acts 2,
                > 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and
                > fellowship, to the
                > breaking of bread and the prayers.
                > 43 Awe came upon everyone, because many wonders and signs were
                > being done
                > by the apostles.
                > 44 All who believed were together and had all things in common;
                > 45 they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the
                > proceeds to all, as any had need.
                > 46 Day by day, as they spent much time together in the temple,
                > they broke
                > bread at home and ate their food with glad and generous hearts,
                > 47 praising God and having the goodwill of all the people. And
                > day by day
                > the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.
                >
                > And Acts 4,
                > 32 Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and
                > soul,
                > and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but
                > everything
                > they owned was held in common.
                > 33 With great power the apostles gave their testimony to the
                > resurrection
                > of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all.
                > 34 There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned
                > lands or
                > houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold.
                > 35 They laid it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to
                > each as
                > any had need.
                > 36 There was a Levite, a native of Cyprus, Joseph, to whom the
                > apostles
                > gave the name Barnabas (which means "son of encouragement").
                > 37 He sold a field that belonged to him, then brought the money,
                > and laid
                > it at the apostles' feet.

                And note the name of the work! "The ***Acts*** of the Apostles:)!

                And I would remind you that in Luke's appearance stories of the
                question: When does the risen Lord become known to them? In the
                Emmaus story this fellow walks with them all day long, opens up all
                Scriptures... so talks, talks, talks from morning to night... and
                they are clueless, until when? (It is an activity:)!)
                >
                >
                >
                >> The obvious difference between our proposals is you look to
                >> "preaching" about the significance of Jesus after he died as central
                >> to the originating messaging, whereas I propose the social praxis of
                >> "Kingdom of God" sharing while Jesus was quite alive as "the
                >> original" and "originating" proclamation.
                >
                > You are changing my question, because rather than starting from the
                > crucifixion, you want to start with Jesus. Furthermore, you change the
                > nature of "proclamation" from an act of speech to a set of behaviors.

                Exactly! Again, I stated that I would approach this very
                differently. I simply am asking for you and others interested to
                think of your question from a different vantage point. And ***yes***
                I am starting with Jesus quite alive! And I am starting with his
                words about "the Kingdom of God come near." I precisely think that
                is the heart of the good news and precisely why Jesus was framed in
                so many patterns of later confessional language that come from all
                over TANAK. Here I would note that even in Acts there is no notion
                that these people became known as "Christians" until the time of
                Claudius and outside of the old homeland, but rather up there in
                Antioch. Formerly they were know as "the Way" (not the exegesis
                club, not the Jesus people, not the idea club). This titling by
                "Luke" fits perfectly with Paul's "way of the Spirit," James "way of
                wisdom" and the Didache's "way of Life."
                >
                > I thought that when you were asking about the "originating
                > proclamation"
                > that you were asking, What was the "good news" that propelled the
                > followers
                > of Jesus and gave them an increasingly distinctive character from
                > the time
                > of the Crucifixion to the establishment of Paul's churches?

                I'm asking you and all to precisely think about "the propelling."
                Paul frames that propelling power as Spirit driven. James frames it
                as wisdom from above. The Didache frames it as Life power.
                > But now it
                > appears that you had something quite different in mind.

                You are right, I have something quite different in mind.
                >
                > Acts tells us more. The surviving fellowship of followers became
                > charismatic--
                > The act of Pentecost was billed as the watershed at the beginning
                > of the
                > first chapter:
                > 4 While staying with them, [Jesus] ordered them not to leave
                > Jerusalem, but
                > to wait there for the promise of the Father. "This," he said, "is
                > what you
                > have heard from me;
                > 5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the
                > Holy
                > Spirit not many days from now."
                >
                > And after pentecost, the fellowship became characterized by baptism
                > in the
                > Holy Spirit
                > Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come
                > upon you;
                > and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and
                > Samaria, and to
                > the ends of the earth."
                >
                > Acts 2:1 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together
                > in one
                > place.
                > 2 And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a
                > violent
                > wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting.
                > 3 Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue
                > rested
                > on each of them.
                > 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in
                > other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.

                I think Acts represents "Luke's" particular framing of the founding
                of the movement nearly a century later. He first writes the gospel,
                of course! All the gospels are pretty clear that this all starts
                with Jesus, n'est pas? And, Peter, whom you are interested in, was
                called by Jesus and sent by Jesus and taught by Jesus. That he had
                some lapses along the way and chickened out, is not to say his
                membership in this group only began after the cross and
                resurrection! And what that gets him (and all) back to is to what
                they were doing before the cross and resurrection. And all the
                gospels do say this this mission program indeed had positive
                results. Here I'll just note the way Mark puts it: (6:12-13) "So
                they went out and proclaimed that all should repent. They cast out
                many demons, and anointed with oil many who were sick and cured
                them." This didn't start working after the cross. It started
                working before it. In Luke we get this doubled... 12 and 70/2. That
                this was working is really emphasized in Luke!
                >
                > Peter appeals to the prophet Joel about the Holy Spirit in 2:16-18 in
                > another one of his reported orations, concluding
                > with another appeal to the HS in 2:33.
                > -- and now this might be important:
                > 37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to
                > Peter
                > and to the other apostles, "Brothers, what should we do?"
                > 38 Peter said to them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you
                > in the
                > name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will
                > receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
                > 39 For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who
                > are far
                > away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to him."

                Consider this. While Jesus was alive there was all sorts of
                searching out of the Scriptures as a part of the table talk and way
                side conversations. The rather obvious idea that Jewish folks would
                turn to their "source book" to understand and expand and expound on
                reconciliation work isn't hard to figure. That, after his death they
                would also think about their former sender in the frames and
                registers of that Scripture is no surprise. Lots of good juicy
                texts to hail such a sender. And in the NT we find Jesus called by a
                whole bunch of names and characterized by a broad swath of
                comparisons (like Elijah, like David, like Moses, like Melchizidek,
                but for these folks always fulfilling and "great than.") The move
                from funding the movement with Scriptural justifications to funding
                the leader is not a strange move. Indeed it is the most natural
                thing imaginable.
                >
                > So Peter may have preached the Resurrection, but when people asked
                > him what
                > to do, he had a simple formula:
                > * Repent
                > * Be baptized
                > * Receive the gift of the HS

                And note the first word! And the second is an action. And the third
                is a nod to the empowerment source. Yep! And in good "evangelical
                speak" what does one become? A ***follower*** of Jesus! (following
                on the Way).

                For smiles I would note that Jesus' great prayer that he teaches to
                his disciples is not, "Dear me in heaven, hallowed is me:)!" It is,
                "Our Father...."

                > This is interesting because Jesus himself never seems to have
                > placed much
                > emphasis on anyone getting baptized other than himself, and the
                > "gift of
                > the HS" in Acts has little precedent in the Gospels. But it does
                > seem to
                > play a big role in the fellowship of the followers of Jesus after
                > Pentecost. It played such a big role that Paul had to figure out
                > how to
                > deal with it, years later. It had become so established that he
                > couldn't
                > just ban it.

                You are right. That is a fascinating question. When did it
                start???? The originating mission agenda says nothing about it. The
                Synoptics make clear that baptism was a "John thing." The Gospel of
                John (the disciple) it says once that Jesus baptised, but then
                quickly corrects that with the note that only the disciples
                baptized. Matthew has the Great Commission. Paul and Acts will talk
                about it. I don't think we have a historical clue about when or how
                it began. It is the meal, not baptism that is "more original," if
                you will. But then as an act of "following Jesus," then having done
                to you what was done to him makes obvious sense. An act of "going
                through the waters and coming out on the other side," so to speak, is
                pretty much the most Scriptural of activities.
                >
                > Now, I did not stress these matters in my proposal because I
                > understood
                > "originating proclamation" to have been about *words,* and Peter
                > seems to
                > have been the prime purveyor of words until Paul got going. But social
                > praxis must have been in the mix, too, in Phase I even, because of the
                > communalism described at the end of Acts 2 & 4 (but seldom
                > thereafter), and
                > the emphasis on the gifts of the Holy Spirit-- manifested
                > especially in
                > healing.

                Well, Acts is about the spread of the Kingdom of God... propelled by
                Spirit power from Jerusalem to Rome. For a model for understanding
                "Luke's" plotting I would point to it as being a reverse conquest
                story. Octavian and Markus Agrippa had marched and sailed east to
                conquer the forces of Antony and Cleopatra and thus was the founding
                of the Empire of the Divine Augustus (so voted by the Senate), "the
                father of the fatherland," the son of god (Jupiter, of course), the
                Pontifex Maximus, and the one who was heralded as savior and the
                maker of the god's peace (the Pax Romani). (we've got this noted on
                tablets, coins, statues, temples, and writings). Peter and Paul
                replace these Roman twins. "The God and Father of our Lord Jesus
                Christ" replaces Jupiter. And Peter and Paul are but generals and
                admirals and Jesus is "the son of the Father, the Son of God, the
                Savior, and High Priest (after the order of Melchizedek, not Julius
                Caesar). The Romans came with war, the Way folks came with "say,
                Peace to this house...." Acts ending shows who won, from Luke's
                perspective.
                >
                > Where do you see the words emphasizing the Kingdom of God, other
                > than in
                > the passage from Luke?

                All of it! The summary phrase which was the summary proclamation in
                the mission program is now the summary last word for the whole
                shooting match. The Pax Christi made it to Rome just fine:)!
                >
                >
                >
                >> The texts that show the continuation of this proclamation reach from
                >> Jesus time all the way up to the production of the extant Didache.
                >
                > You lose me on the referent for "this," and yes, I do think the
                > Didache is
                > important.

                Again, the proclamation of the Kingdom of God come near. Tell me the
                words you priest uses in the liturgy after you have received the
                Lord's Supper? I say, "the grace, mercy and peace of God be with
                you." Those summary words etch out the experience of what I trust is
                experienced "good news."
                >
                >> Paul ranks "the apostoloi" as first in his ranking of "offices." In
                >> I Cor. 9 he speaks about this mission praxis in relationship to
                >> defending his apostleship.
                >
                > Paul's apostleship, as described in the letters and Acts, belongs
                > to my
                > Phase III. What was the "originating proclamation" in the
                > intervening decades?

                Again, in terms of the exegetical work to talk up Jesus, the sender
                of the sent ones, I'd point you to start not with very late Acts, but
                rather with Paul's Greeting words and then esp. that little formula
                in I Cor. 15. That among the many titles "Christ" becomes the first
                rank one (so much so that many think Christ is Jesus' last name) is
                obvious in a "Kingdom of God" movement. In the opening of Romans,
                for example, Paul directly says that Jesus was "descended from David
                according to the flesh." Psalm 2 and the host of scriptures on the
                Covenant with David are obviously key passages for understanding the
                earliest kerymatic declarations and conversations. Not surprising
                that someone who talked up "the Kingdom" became talked about as the
                heir to and leader of that "Kingdom rule" and that this became the
                prime identifying language. As for cross and resurrection, note
                clearly that Paul talks about what he "received" and is passing on.
                Christ is both talked about as dying and rising "according to the
                Scriptures." (not according to the facts or according to memories,
                but according to Scriptures!). I think this is the place to begin to
                think about the named and nameless who did this exegetical work for
                preaching and teaching. But again note Paul's own language about the
                order of the ministries... first "apostles, then...." ***First***
                the sent ones. That sending did not start after Jesus' death. It
                started before it and continued after it. Exegesis and the talk that
                goes with it comes after one gets into the house and could take place
                only if those there "shared the peace." Shaking dust off one's shoes
                was the recommended action for those homes that weren't interested.
                >
                > I have rattled on enough, I think, to flesh out our differences
                > somewhat.
                > Enough for tonight.

                Good conversation. Again, my point was to invite you and all to
                consider approaching your question in a very different way. Start
                with Jesus and then work towards the very late Acts (whenever you
                want to date it) is my way of working at this. As for Peter? How
                much do we actually know about this fellow? And I think a more
                interesting question is who the heck took "the Way" to Rome in the
                first place. I wonder if it is one of those Paul mentions in his
                greetings at the end? There's a Mary mentioned. A Rufus is
                mentioned and note Paul's language. Is this the son of Simon of
                Cyrene? These names are common enough, but then persons with these
                names are mentioned in the later written gospels. Lots of Mary's to
                consider. But there is one Rufus who is mentioned. The really
                interesting question here, to me is who the heck first took the Way
                to Rome? I know what tradition will say, but Peter just disappears
                in Acts. Would be nice if some evidence buried in the Vatican would
                actually shed some light on this!
                >
                > Thanks,

                You're welcome. And thanks for an interesting opening question and
                consideration of my alternate way to frame answering your question.
                If you're interested I can go on and write out the way of summing the
                answers to those other questions I posed from this alternative approach.

                Gordon Raynal
                Inman, SC
                > Bob
                >
              • Matson, Mark (Academic)
                ... A couple of notes on the exchange above: 1. At root, a basic issue is what was the major impetus for the rise of the early church? According to Acts, it
                Message 7 of 9 , May 7 1:16 PM
                • 0 Attachment
                  Gordon Raynal argued on the "originating proclamation":

                  > >Question One: What was the original proclamation (messaging) of the
                  > >community? What was it about?
                  > >
                  > >Phase I text? The Q1 Mission Program found in extant Luke 10:3-11.
                  > >Message: "say to them, The Kingdom of God has come near to you."
                  > >And so this program was at core about (per the directives of the
                  > >aforementioned), peace (shalom) declaration, shared table fellowship
                  > >(which, of course is
                  > >inclusive of the conversations), and "healing" in homes. Where "the
                  > >peace" was received and shared, then there would be another home on
                  > >the map to make
                  > >up a network of peace/ reconciliation places/ families & friends.

                  To which Bob Schacht responded:

                  > Gordon,
                  > You are quite right to remind me about Q, and the core rituals of
                  > communion
                  > that helped to sustain the fellowship of believers. But I have trouble
                  > seeing in that the "originating proclamation." I thought you were
                  > asking
                  > about evangelism, but it sounds like all you have in mind is a quiet
                  > network of friends. What you describe sounds like a bunch of Quakers
                  :-
                  > )

                  And Gordon again:

                  > >The obvious difference between our proposals is you look to
                  > >"preaching" about the significance of Jesus after he died as central
                  > >to the originating messaging, whereas I propose the social praxis of
                  > >"Kingdom of God" sharing while Jesus was quite alive as "the
                  > >original" and "originating" proclamation.

                  And Bob again:

                  > You are changing my question, because rather than starting from the
                  > crucifixion, you want to start with Jesus. Furthermore, you change the
                  > nature of "proclamation" from an act of speech to a set of behaviors.
                  >
                  > I thought that when you were asking about the "originating
                  > proclamation"
                  > that you were asking, What was the "good news" that propelled the
                  > followers
                  > of Jesus and gave them an increasingly distinctive character from the
                  > time
                  > of the Crucifixion to the establishment of Paul's churches? But now it
                  > appears that you had something quite different in mind.


                  A couple of notes on the exchange above:

                  1. At root, a basic issue is what was the major impetus for the rise of
                  the early church? According to Acts, it was primarily the death and
                  resurrection of Jesus, and that this singular event interpreted all of
                  Jesus' previous teaching, and also interpreted the entire Old Testament.
                  This event "energized" the church to proclaim "boldly" (as noted
                  previously). I would argue this is the well spring of the kerygma of
                  the church. It was preaching first about Jesus, and secondly contained
                  the content of Jesus' own preaching.

                  2. If so, then Jesus' own preaching of the Kingdom of God becomes part
                  of the understanding of who Jesus was/is. So it is not surprising of
                  Acts ends with Paul's speaking openly about the Kingdom of God... but it
                  is a kingdom now understood in light of the resurrection.

                  3. Assuming Q (as most economist jokes start "assume a free market", we
                  can also begin many hypothetical discussions with "assume Q), Jesus
                  appears to focus on the coming kingdom. Of course Mark does too at the
                  beginning of his gospel, the first preaching of Jesus. But that is not
                  the necessarily the preaching of the church in its earliest evangelical
                  form. The sending of the 12 or 70 was not evangelistic so much as
                  exploring the power of God in his kingdom -- though it could be
                  anticipatory (progymnasmata training exercises) for a coming evangelism
                  of the church.

                  4. What I would want to know from Gordon, is whether he sees the death
                  and resurrection of Jesus as the primary formative event for the church.
                  Or does he see a church formed based on Jesus' preaching, and which only
                  later added on the importance of the resurrection of Jesus. In other
                  words, was it Jesus as subject of the preaching content or Jesus as
                  object of preaching content that drove the earliest church to form as an
                  ongoing replicative social unit?


                  Mark A. Matson
                  Academic Dean
                  Milligan College
                  http://www.milligan.edu/administrative/mmatson/personal.htm
                • Gordon Raynal
                  Hi Mark, I m cutting down to get to a comments and response to your question: ... Mark I note here you opt for the definite article (***the*** early church
                  Message 8 of 9 , May 8 7:12 AM
                  • 0 Attachment
                    Hi Mark,

                    I'm cutting down to get to a comments and response to your question:
                    On May 7, 2009, at 4:16 PM, Matson, Mark (Academic) wrote:

                    > Gordon Raynal argued on the "originating proclamation":
                    >
                    >>> Question One: What was the original proclamation (messaging) of the
                    >>> community? What was it about?
                    >>>
                    >>> Phase I text? The Q1 Mission Program found in extant Luke 10:3-11.
                    >>> Message: "say to them, The Kingdom of God has come near to you."
                    >>> And so this program was at core about (per the directives of the
                    >>> aforementioned), peace (shalom) declaration, shared table fellowship
                    >>> (which, of course is
                    >>> inclusive of the conversations), and "healing" in homes. Where "the
                    >>> peace" was received and shared, then there would be another home on
                    >>> the map to make
                    >>> up a network of peace/ reconciliation places/ families & friends.
                    >
                    > A couple of notes on the exchange above:
                    >
                    > 1. At root, a basic issue is what was the major impetus for the
                    > rise of
                    > the early church?
                    Mark I note here you opt for the definite article (***the*** early
                    church (singular)). This sounds so organized and so, well,
                    singular:)! Seriously, when I read such as Paul's Corinthian
                    correspondence I'm not very moved to start with such singularity or
                    sense of clear organization! When I look to the earliest evidences I
                    can find, I find a none too surprising diversity in various locales.
                    And for historical purposes I think the term "movement" is a more
                    helpful term... so we're talking a movement with a lot of diverse
                    voices in it. This makes entire sense to me in a reconciliation
                    movement, as opposed to a sharply ideological movement. Rush
                    Limbaugh's pushing Republican Purity (his definition) is doing a fine
                    job of driving folks away;)!

                    >
                    > 3. Assuming Q (as most economist jokes start "assume a free
                    > market", we
                    > can also begin many hypothetical discussions with "assume Q), Jesus
                    > appears to focus on the coming kingdom. Of course Mark does too at the
                    > beginning of his gospel, the first preaching of Jesus. But that is
                    > not
                    > the necessarily the preaching of the church in its earliest
                    > evangelical
                    > form.

                    What literature doesn't focus on the Kingdom of God? Even if you
                    want to approach the question(s) as you do, the proclamation of the
                    cross/ resurrection kerygma is all about the Kingdom of God, right?

                    > The sending of the 12 or 70 was not evangelistic so much as
                    > exploring the power of God in his kingdom -- though it could be
                    > anticipatory (progymnasmata training exercises) for a coming
                    > evangelism
                    > of the church.

                    And here is where we disagree.

                    >
                    > 4. What I would want to know from Gordon, is whether he sees the
                    > death
                    > and resurrection of Jesus as the primary formative event for the
                    > church.
                    > Or does he see a church formed based on Jesus' preaching, and which
                    > only
                    > later added on the importance of the resurrection of Jesus. In other
                    > words, was it Jesus as subject of the preaching content or Jesus as
                    > object of preaching content that drove the earliest church to form
                    > as an
                    > ongoing replicative social unit?

                    You give me an either/or question and I'm going to answer,
                    "neither:)!" Again you use the definite article, "the" ("the
                    primary formative event") of "the church." As noted, I really want
                    to frame approaching my suggested questions in a different way. To
                    your questions and my "neither" answer, I want to suggest that what
                    we see emerge out of late Second Temple Judaism is a reconciliation
                    movement (to work off of Paul's summary phrasing). I see this as a
                    social development, not as a movement inaugurated by one person or
                    response to one person. For the sake of a modern analogy I would
                    suggest something like the organization of the Southern Christian
                    Leadership Conference. We're talking the coming together among
                    friends and associates over some years to form a distinctive
                    movement. The dynamism of this comes from response to a real need
                    (here... reconciliation work/ with the SCLC the need for civil rights
                    for African Americans). That dynamism is spurred by key voices and
                    the broader conversations that are evoke. The dynamism of a
                    reconciliation movement, as opposed to an core ideological movement,
                    is very vital as diverse voices join in and only grows as that
                    diversity grows. Hence, they are messy. And these reconciliation
                    folks were an arguing lot! The eventual canon (a much later work, of
                    course) shows us what were considered to be the tolerable limits of
                    that diversity, but then those decisions began to be worked out over
                    a hundred years after Jesus. So, I have to answer, "neither."

                    Now to Jesus, I think he became "the lead voice" in this circle of
                    friends and associates. I actually think "teacher" is the wrong term
                    to use to describe him. The authentic language we have from him, in
                    my view, is found in the aphorisms and parables... in other words
                    "wisdom speech." Wisdom words as wisdom words, don't "teach," they
                    alert and orient and stir conversations and stir imaginations. They
                    are evocative "wonder" and "wondering words." The word "sage" is
                    closer to a descriptive titling, but I think the better way to talk
                    of Jesus is that he was "a man of aphorisms and parables." The
                    "dynamic juicing" so such language sharing is powerful. I think with
                    imaginations stirred, then sharing "the peace" led to the organizing
                    of a movement to share this experience. The mission agenda we find
                    described in and/ or assumed/ talked about in Q, Thomas, the
                    Synoptics, John, Paul's letters, Acts, etc. was a key inaugural
                    moment in that it intentionally spread the reconciliation experience
                    beyond the confines of the original family, friends and associates.
                    Per that mission agenda, this was "a two by two to homes" movement,
                    hence it was a social operation. And per all the gospels and the
                    fact that we're still talking about it, it "worked." (or it "can"
                    work). That the lead "imaginator," who was mercilessly killed by the
                    "Pax" they were responding to, became the iconic embodiment of the
                    whole thing is no surprise. To be sure, there were fears and
                    fallings away in the midst of that horror, but that didn't kill this
                    movement, it spurred it on! And that cross could not kill the
                    imaginative power of Jesus' potent language. Those words still
                    "worked" and still do "for those with ears to hear:)!"

                    To end on some shameless self promotion:)! "The 4th R" has just
                    published the first of two articles by me on wisdom speech (this
                    article) and Jesus as a wisdom communicator (the next edition). I
                    hope some might be interested in reading it. Also I want to give a
                    shout out to Hal Taussig's new book, "In the Beginning Was the
                    Meal." It is fresh off the presses and I just got my copy. I urge
                    all to read it.



                    Good to chat.

                    Gordon Raynal
                    Inman, SC
                    >
                  Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.