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Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios" in Paul generally

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  • yeshua666
    ... That s been done. He replies that Paul uses brother to refer to fellow believers in many places and so to assume the Lord s brother means a sibling
    Message 1 of 18 , Nov 12, 2010
      --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, David Cavanagh <davidcavanagh@...> wrote:

      > Well, I think I would move this argument away from the complex
      > grammatical issues, and ask JA to provide contemporary evidence for the
      > use of the idiom "the Lord's brother" as referring to a follower
      > of/believer in YHWH - I think he would be hard pressed to find any.


      That's been done. He replies that Paul uses "brother" to refer to fellow believers in many places and so to assume "the Lord's brother" means a sibling and not a believer is naive.

      Tim O'Neill
    • yeshua666
      ... And this guy would dismiss that as an argument from authority, an appeal to truth by democracy and evidence of a cultural Christian hegemony that even has
      Message 2 of 18 , Nov 12, 2010
        --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jack Kilmon" <jkilmon@...> wrote:

        > I have been having this same conversation on "Jesus Mysteries" concerning
        > Josephus XX on James, Galatians 1:19 and Mark 6:3. The problem that mythers
        > have is that every Josephan scholar in the local cluster of galaxies in the
        > Orion Spur of the Milky Way (well, there is this one guy on Alpha Cetus 4)
        > affirms what is obvious about the language that it is authentic and, unlike
        > the Testimonium in XVIII, unscrewed around with by Christians.

        And this guy would dismiss that as an argument from authority, an appeal to truth by democracy and evidence of a cultural Christian hegemony that even has atheists like me in its crushing grip.


        The biggest
        > problem for the mythers is that the James passage (which I also think gives
        > us a clue what happened to John Zebedee) is predicated on a previous
        > treatment of "Jesus, the so-called Christ" as a witness to an earlier
        > unedited TF.


        Agreed. But he dismisses that as an assumption.

        Most mythers have their agenda but have no Greek and certainly
        > no Aramaic. ADELFON IHSOU TOU LEGOMENOU XRISTOU IAKWBOS ONOMA AUTW.
        > Literally, "...brother of Jesus who was said to be the Messiah, himself
        > Jacob by name 'is in the syntactic structure of Josephus' Aramaic draft of
        > Antiquities.

        Now this is interesting. Could you elaborate?

        > The problem for mythers is quite clear. Someone that has siblings, multiply
        > attested by historical contemporaries, cannot be a myth.

        He dismisses that as simply a "tradition" and says it's like the "traditions" about King Arthur and Robin Hood and so says that kind of thing can't be used as evidence there was a genuine historical Jesus.

        Tim O'Neill
      • Horace Jeffery Hodges
        Why bother arguing with the fellow? He s apparently in the same category as Birthers or Truthers -- no amount of evidence would convince him.
        Message 3 of 18 , Nov 12, 2010
          Why bother arguing with the fellow? He's apparently in the same category as
          "Birthers" or "Truthers" -- no amount of evidence would convince him.
          Unless dealing with him happens to be fun, just stop debating him.

          Jeffery Hodges




          ________________________________
          From: yeshua666 <t.c.oneill2@...>
          To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Sat, November 13, 2010 7:36:16 AM
          Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios" in
          Paul generally



          --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jack Kilmon" <jkilmon@...> wrote:

          > I have been having this same conversation on "Jesus Mysteries" concerning
          > Josephus XX on James, Galatians 1:19 and Mark 6:3.  The problem that mythers
          > have is that every Josephan scholar in the local cluster of galaxies in the
          > Orion Spur of the Milky Way (well, there is this one guy on Alpha Cetus 4)
          > affirms what is obvious about the language that it is authentic and, unlike
          > the Testimonium in XVIII, unscrewed around with by Christians.

          And this guy would dismiss that as an argument from authority, an appeal to
          truth by democracy and evidence of a cultural Christian hegemony that even has
          atheists like me in its crushing grip.


          The biggest
          > problem for the mythers is that the James passage (which I also think gives
          > us a clue what happened to John Zebedee) is predicated on a previous
          > treatment of "Jesus, the so-called Christ" as a witness to an earlier
          > unedited TF.


          Agreed.  But he dismisses that as an assumption.

          Most mythers have their agenda but have no Greek and certainly
          > no Aramaic.  ADELFON IHSOU TOU LEGOMENOU XRISTOU IAKWBOS ONOMA AUTW.
          > Literally, "...brother of Jesus who was said to be the Messiah, himself
          > Jacob by name 'is in the syntactic structure of Josephus' Aramaic draft of
          > Antiquities.

          Now this is interesting.  Could you elaborate?

          > The problem for mythers is quite clear.  Someone that has siblings, multiply
          > attested by historical contemporaries, cannot be a myth.

          He dismisses that as simply a "tradition" and says it's like the "traditions"
          about King Arthur and Robin Hood and so says that kind of thing can't be used as
          evidence there was a genuine historical Jesus.

          Tim O'Neill




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          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Jack Kilmon
          ... From: yeshua666 Sent: Friday, November 12, 2010 4:31 PM To: Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the Lord
          Message 4 of 18 , Nov 12, 2010
            --------------------------------------------------
            From: "yeshua666" <t.c.oneill2@...>
            Sent: Friday, November 12, 2010 4:31 PM
            To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
            Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios"
            in Paul generally

            >
            >
            > --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, David Cavanagh <davidcavanagh@...>
            > wrote:
            >
            >> Well, I think I would move this argument away from the complex
            >> grammatical issues, and ask JA to provide contemporary evidence for the
            >> use of the idiom "the Lord's brother" as referring to a follower
            >> of/believer in YHWH - I think he would be hard pressed to find any.
            >
            >
            > That's been done. He replies that Paul uses "brother" to refer to fellow
            > believers in many places and so to assume "the Lord's brother" means a
            > sibling and not a believer is naive.
            >
            > Tim O'Neill

            I don't see the logic of this in considering the use of "brothers" by Paul
            to refer to his fellows in his Ekklesia with Paul's James as a "fellow
            believer" with Jesus? The proof text for Paul's reference to a real brother
            is Josephus in Book XX on James where the Greek in Aramaic word order refers
            to a brother, not a "fellow believer." I do not think that taking a clear
            reference as it is written is naïve.

            Regards,

            Jack Kilmon
          • David Cavanagh
            ... Really? I think a quick check will show that brother and Lord tend to appear together as brother(s) in the Lord . If Lord = YHWH then I think no
            Message 5 of 18 , Nov 13, 2010
              On 12/11/2010 23:31, yeshua666 wrote:
              >
              >
              >
              > --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
              > <mailto:crosstalk2%40yahoogroups.com>, David Cavanagh
              > <davidcavanagh@...> wrote:
              >
              > > Well, I think I would move this argument away from the complex
              > > grammatical issues, and ask JA to provide contemporary evidence for the
              > > use of the idiom "the Lord's brother" as referring to a follower
              > > of/believer in YHWH - I think he would be hard pressed to find any.
              >
              > That's been done. He replies that Paul uses "brother" to refer to
              > fellow believers in many places and so to assume "the Lord's brother"
              > means a sibling and not a believer is naive.
              >
              >
              >
              Really? I think a quick check will show that "brother" and "Lord" tend
              to appear together as "brother(s) in the Lord". If "Lord" = YHWH then I
              think no second-Temple Jew would ever contemplate speaking of "the
              Lord's brother" -does YHWH have brothers and sisters?

              David Cavanagh
              Major (The Salvation Army)
              Florence (Italy)


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • David Cavanagh
              ... I ve now done what I suggested earlier this morning, checking out the occurences of brother in the Pauline literature. The term itself is common enough,
              Message 6 of 18 , Nov 13, 2010
                On 12/11/2010 23:31, yeshua666 wrote:
                >
                >
                >
                > --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                > <mailto:crosstalk2%40yahoogroups.com>, David Cavanagh
                > <davidcavanagh@...> wrote:
                >
                > > Well, I think I would move this argument away from the complex
                > > grammatical issues, and ask JA to provide contemporary evidence for the
                > > use of the idiom "the Lord's brother" as referring to a follower
                > > of/believer in YHWH - I think he would be hard pressed to find any.
                >
                > That's been done. He replies that Paul uses "brother" to refer to
                > fellow believers in many places and so to assume "the Lord's brother"
                > means a sibling and not a believer is naive.
                >
                I've now done what I suggested earlier this morning, checking out the
                occurences of "brother" in the Pauline literature. The term itself is
                common enough, appearing 18 times in the indisputed Paulines (ie.
                excluding Ephesians, Colossians, 2 Thessalonians and the Pastorals) but
                it occurs as "the Lord's brother" only in Galatians 1:19. That is
                perhaps a smallish sample to be dealing with for analytic purposes, but
                I suggest your interlocutor has no evidence at all for the assertion
                that "Lord" in that phrase refers to YHWH. I really do think that if he
                wants to argue that he needs to provide a detailed analysis of just what
                that phrase would imply for the individual believer's relationship with
                God - the NT as a whole tends to go no further than identifying the
                believer as a "son" (whether as one who has been adopted in Christ -so
                Paul- or through rebirth in the Spirit -so John).

                David Cavanagh
                Major (The Salvation Army)
                Florence (Italy)


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • David C Hindley
                Tim, Sounds like Spin from FRDB. Based on my observations of the Pauline corpus, if a form of KURIOS refers to Jesus/Christ, a definite article is almost
                Message 7 of 18 , Nov 13, 2010
                  Tim,

                  Sounds like "Spin" from FRDB.

                  Based on my observations of the Pauline corpus, if a form of KURIOS refers to Jesus/Christ, a definite article is almost
                  always associated with it. If it does not, it mainly refers to YHWH, although most of these instances are quotations from the
                  LXX/OG where a form of KURIOS pretty much has to refer to YHWH. None of these quotations occur in Galatians, but some
                  examples from Romans are 4:8 "makarios anêr hou ou mê logisêtai *kurios* hamartian" (Ps 31:2 OG), 9:28 "logon gar suntelôn
                  kai suntemnôn poiêsei *kurios* epi tês gês" (Is 10:23 not OG, as the OG translation renders the Hebrew "Lord YHVH of Hosts"
                  as "ho qeos"), etc. I believe I can identify several other cases of anarthrous KURIOS that are not quotations and certainly
                  seem to refer to YHWH, if I had the time and inclination.

                  There are 6 instances of some form of KURIOS in N/A (parentheses mean the words are added in English but not in the Greek,
                  square brackets mean I added the word to the RSV translation to bring it closer to the Greek, and the curly brackets mean I
                  have reworded the RSV translation to bring it closer to the Greek):

                  Galatians 1:3 charis humin kai eirênê apo theou patros hêmôn kai *kuriou* Iêsou Christou (anarthrous, but with Jesus Christ)
                  RSV: Grace to you and peace from God (the) Father {of us} and Lord Jesus Christ

                  Galatians 1:19 heteron de tôn apostolôn ouk eidon ei mê Iakôbon ton adelphon *tou kuriou* (definite article)
                  RSV: But I saw none of the other apostles except James the brother *{of the Lord}*

                  Galatians 4:1 Legô de, eph' hoson chronon ho klêronomos nêpios estin, ouden diapherei doulou *kurios* pantôn ôn (anarthtrous,
                  referring to a master)
                  RSV: I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no better than a slave, though he is (the) *owner* of all (the
                  estate)

                  Galatians 5:10 egô pepoitha eis humas en *kuriô* hoti ouden allo phronêsete: (anarthrous)
                  RSV: I have confidence in (the) *Lord* that you will take no other view than mine

                  Galatians 6:14 Emoi de mê genoito kauchasthai ei mê en tô staurô *tou kuriou* hêmôn Iêsou Christou (definite article)
                  RSV: But far be it from me to glory except in the cross *of the Lord* {of us} Jesus Christ

                  Galatians 6:18 Hê charis *tou kuriou* hêmôn Iêsou Christou meta tou pneumatos humôn, adelphoi: amên. (definite article)
                  RSV: The grace *of [the] Lord* {of us} Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brethren. Amen.

                  There might be a tie-in between the singular "brother" in 1:19 & the plural "brothers" in 6:18, but there might not.

                  It looks like while 4:1 is anarthrous, KURIOS clearly refers to the master of household slaves who is too young to weild
                  control over his household. Gal 5:10 might be a case where "in KURIOS" **could** mean "in YHWH". Gal 1:3 has always come
                  across to me as a case of a greeting calling on God being amended to make it refer to Jesus Christ, as do several other
                  blessings and doxologies in the corpus. "Grace to you and peace from God our Father and Lord" + "Jesus Christ". Of course,
                  this would still make it a reference to God's position as master over the faithful.

                  Given the above, I'm inclined to think that in 1:19 the phrase "ton adelphon tou kuriou" ("the brother of the lord") is
                  intended to refer to Jesus/Christ. Whether it is original to the rest of the passage is another question.

                  Respectfully,

                  Dave Hindley
                  Newton Falls, Ohio USA


                  -----Original Message-----
                  From: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com [mailto:crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of yeshua666
                  Sent: Thursday, November 11, 2010 10:12 PM
                  To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                  Subject: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios" in Paul generally

                  First of all, hello to the group since I am a new member and this is my first post.

                  I am currently in a discussion/debate with someone who is not so much a dreaded Jesus Myther but more of a dogmatic
                  hyper-sceptical agnostic when it comes to a historical Jesus. He doesn't fall into the trap of claiming Jesus didn't exist
                  (thus avoiding the onus of then having to explain how the Jesus stories came into existence in their current form without a
                  HJ), but gets aggressively vehement with anyone who dares to decide that they think a HJ is probable or likely, since he
                  believes there is nothing in the evidence to support this. The debate in question is on a forum for atheists and sceptics,
                  which makes his vehemence against those of us who feel an HJ was likely more intense, since he claims this makes us all dupes
                  of some kind of "Christian cultural hegemony" that is warping our perceptions.

                  The discussion keeps coming back to Galatians 1:19 – the "smoking gun" where Paul casually mentions meeting Jesus' brother
                  James. Our Jesus Agnostic counters that this is us reading "hegemonic theology" into the evidence, since "brother" may not
                  mean a sibling but may be a title and Paul says "the Lord's brother" and this most likely refers to Yahweh, not Jesus. The
                  Jesus Agnostic (let's call him "JA") writes:

                  "I'm sure you wouldn't have problems with distinguishing between "god" (unqualified) and "the god of medicine", "the god of
                  Heliopolis", "the black god", "the dying god". The way we use "god" is analogous to the way Jews of the period used "the
                  lord". When someone says "god is dead", we know who is being referred to, just as the early Greek speaking Jew would have
                  known what the unqualified ï êõñéïò referred to, but then, when it was qualified, eg "my lord", "the lord Jesus", it
                  obviously didn't refer to the same thing, the god of the Jews."

                  I've countered by pointing out that this black and white assertion that Paul's unqualified uses of "kyrios" must all refer to
                  Yahweh and can't refer to Jesus is too simplistic by pointing to 1Cor 16:22-24:

                  "If anyone does not love the Lord, let that person be cursed! Maranatha! The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you. My love to
                  all of you in Christ Jesus."

                  I note that it's far from clear that "the Lord" in the first sentence refers to Yahweh and not Jesus, considering that the
                  second and third sentences are clearly talking about Jesus and not Yahweh. Finally I note that Geza Vermes argues "kyrios"
                  was also used to translate the Aramaic title "mar" meaning "respected teacher, master, lord" and that we find the same word
                  here in the Aramaic formula "Maranatha!"

                  Of course, JA is having none of this, sneering:

                  "If the Aramaic passage were in some way relevant, you'd notice that there is a pronominal suffix on the `mar', rendering
                  your abysmal attempt at contradiction useless. You do need to know something about what you are dealing with."

                  Personally, I can't see how the pronominal suffix changes what I've noted. But anyway. He goes on:

                  "Consider the several references to "the lord" in 1 Cor 7: Paul is happy to use this non-titular "kyrios" and there is
                  nothing to indicate what the reference is. If there is not a single overt meaning for his readers, how can he expect them to
                  know what it means? Please, think about this. It might be reasonable to people brought up to accept the trinity without much
                  question to be able to flit from god to Jesus in a single bound, but it is not reasonable to accept the non-trinitarian Paul
                  to do the same."

                  I have my own thoughts about this, but am curious as to what others think about what this guy is claiming. He seems to be
                  saying that unless any use of "kyrios" by Paul is "qualified" (ie "Our Lord Jesus" etc) then ANY reference to "the Lord" by
                  Paul must be to Yahweh and not Jesus.

                  This strikes me as a contrived argument to make clear references to recent, historical Jesus by Paul disappear, but I'm
                  wondering if there is some linguistic argument against what he is saying that I may have missed.

                  Tim O'Neill

                  Armarium Magnum – Ancient and Medieval history books reviewed http://armariummagnus.blogspot.com/




                  ------------------------------------

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                • Rikk Watts
                  BTW: This might not be directly relevant, but has anyone had a look at Gordon Fee s THE PAULINE CHRISTOLOGY? Perhaps the most extensive and painstaking
                  Message 8 of 18 , Nov 13, 2010
                    BTW:

                    This might not be directly relevant, but has anyone had a look at Gordon
                    Fee's THE PAULINE CHRISTOLOGY? Perhaps the most extensive and painstaking
                    exegesis of Paul on this matter by a front rank Pauline scholar, it's been
                    out for a number of years and was well reviewed/received by a panel of
                    scholars at SBL.

                    His comments on Paul's use of KYRIOS and of OT texts normally applied to
                    YHWH but now to Jesus might repay some close attention.

                    Best

                    Rikk Watts


                    > From: David C Hindley <dhindley@...>
                    > Reply-To: xtalk <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                    > Date: Sat, 13 Nov 2010 12:00:03 -0500
                    > To: xtalk <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                    > Subject: RE: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios"
                    > in Paul generally
                    >
                    > Tim,
                    >
                    > Sounds like "Spin" from FRDB.
                    >
                    > Based on my observations of the Pauline corpus, if a form of KURIOS refers to
                    > Jesus/Christ, a definite article is almost
                    > always associated with it. If it does not, it mainly refers to YHWH, although
                    > most of these instances are quotations from the
                    > LXX/OG where a form of KURIOS pretty much has to refer to YHWH. None of these
                    > quotations occur in Galatians, but some
                    > examples from Romans are 4:8 "makarios anêr hou ou mê logisêtai *kurios*
                    > hamartian" (Ps 31:2 OG), 9:28 "logon gar suntelôn
                    > kai suntemnôn poiêsei *kurios* epi tês gês" (Is 10:23 not OG, as the OG
                    > translation renders the Hebrew "Lord YHVH of Hosts"
                    > as "ho qeos"), etc. I believe I can identify several other cases of anarthrous
                    > KURIOS that are not quotations and certainly
                    > seem to refer to YHWH, if I had the time and inclination.
                    >
                    > There are 6 instances of some form of KURIOS in N/A (parentheses mean the
                    > words are added in English but not in the Greek,
                    > square brackets mean I added the word to the RSV translation to bring it
                    > closer to the Greek, and the curly brackets mean I
                    > have reworded the RSV translation to bring it closer to the Greek):
                    >
                    > Galatians 1:3 charis humin kai eirênê apo theou patros hêmôn kai *kuriou*
                    > Iêsou Christou (anarthrous, but with Jesus Christ)
                    > RSV: Grace to you and peace from God (the) Father {of us} and Lord Jesus
                    > Christ
                    >
                    > Galatians 1:19 heteron de tôn apostolôn ouk eidon ei mê Iakôbon ton adelphon
                    > *tou kuriou* (definite article)
                    > RSV: But I saw none of the other apostles except James the brother *{of the
                    > Lord}*
                    >
                    > Galatians 4:1 Legô de, eph' hoson chronon ho klêronomos nêpios estin, ouden
                    > diapherei doulou *kurios* pantôn ôn (anarthtrous,
                    > referring to a master)
                    > RSV: I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no better than a
                    > slave, though he is (the) *owner* of all (the
                    > estate)
                    >
                    > Galatians 5:10 egô pepoitha eis humas en *kuriô* hoti ouden allo phronêsete:
                    > (anarthrous)
                    > RSV: I have confidence in (the) *Lord* that you will take no other view than
                    > mine
                    >
                    > Galatians 6:14 Emoi de mê genoito kauchasthai ei mê en tô staurô *tou kuriou*
                    > hêmôn Iêsou Christou (definite article)
                    > RSV: But far be it from me to glory except in the cross *of the Lord* {of us}
                    > Jesus Christ
                    >
                    > Galatians 6:18 Hê charis *tou kuriou* hêmôn Iêsou Christou meta tou pneumatos
                    > humôn, adelphoi: amên. (definite article)
                    > RSV: The grace *of [the] Lord* {of us} Jesus Christ be with your spirit,
                    > brethren. Amen.
                    >
                    > There might be a tie-in between the singular "brother" in 1:19 & the plural
                    > "brothers" in 6:18, but there might not.
                    >
                    > It looks like while 4:1 is anarthrous, KURIOS clearly refers to the master of
                    > household slaves who is too young to weild
                    > control over his household. Gal 5:10 might be a case where "in KURIOS"
                    > **could** mean "in YHWH". Gal 1:3 has always come
                    > across to me as a case of a greeting calling on God being amended to make it
                    > refer to Jesus Christ, as do several other
                    > blessings and doxologies in the corpus. "Grace to you and peace from God our
                    > Father and Lord" + "Jesus Christ". Of course,
                    > this would still make it a reference to God's position as master over the
                    > faithful.
                    >
                    > Given the above, I'm inclined to think that in 1:19 the phrase "ton adelphon
                    > tou kuriou" ("the brother of the lord") is
                    > intended to refer to Jesus/Christ. Whether it is original to the rest of the
                    > passage is another question.
                    >
                    > Respectfully,
                    >
                    > Dave Hindley
                    > Newton Falls, Ohio USA
                    >
                    >
                    > -----Original Message-----
                    > From: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com [mailto:crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                    > Of yeshua666
                    > Sent: Thursday, November 11, 2010 10:12 PM
                    > To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                    > Subject: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios" in
                    > Paul generally
                    >
                    > First of all, hello to the group since I am a new member and this is my first
                    > post.
                    >
                    > I am currently in a discussion/debate with someone who is not so much a
                    > dreaded Jesus Myther but more of a dogmatic
                    > hyper-sceptical agnostic when it comes to a historical Jesus. He doesn't fall
                    > into the trap of claiming Jesus didn't exist
                    > (thus avoiding the onus of then having to explain how the Jesus stories came
                    > into existence in their current form without a
                    > HJ), but gets aggressively vehement with anyone who dares to decide that they
                    > think a HJ is probable or likely, since he
                    > believes there is nothing in the evidence to support this. The debate in
                    > question is on a forum for atheists and sceptics,
                    > which makes his vehemence against those of us who feel an HJ was likely more
                    > intense, since he claims this makes us all dupes
                    > of some kind of "Christian cultural hegemony" that is warping our perceptions.
                    >
                    > The discussion keeps coming back to Galatians 1:19 – the "smoking gun" where
                    > Paul casually mentions meeting Jesus' brother
                    > James. Our Jesus Agnostic counters that this is us reading "hegemonic
                    > theology" into the evidence, since "brother" may not
                    > mean a sibling but may be a title and Paul says "the Lord's brother" and this
                    > most likely refers to Yahweh, not Jesus. The
                    > Jesus Agnostic (let's call him "JA") writes:
                    >
                    > "I'm sure you wouldn't have problems with distinguishing between "god"
                    > (unqualified) and "the god of medicine", "the god of
                    > Heliopolis", "the black god", "the dying god". The way we use "god" is
                    > analogous to the way Jews of the period used "the
                    > lord". When someone says "god is dead", we know who is being referred to, just
                    > as the early Greek speaking Jew would have
                    > known what the unqualified ï êõñéïò referred to, but then, when it was
                    > qualified, eg "my lord", "the lord Jesus", it
                    > obviously didn't refer to the same thing, the god of the Jews."
                    >
                    > I've countered by pointing out that this black and white assertion that Paul's
                    > unqualified uses of "kyrios" must all refer to
                    > Yahweh and can't refer to Jesus is too simplistic by pointing to 1Cor
                    > 16:22-24:
                    >
                    > "If anyone does not love the Lord, let that person be cursed! Maranatha! The
                    > grace of the Lord Jesus be with you. My love to
                    > all of you in Christ Jesus."
                    >
                    > I note that it's far from clear that "the Lord" in the first sentence refers
                    > to Yahweh and not Jesus, considering that the
                    > second and third sentences are clearly talking about Jesus and not Yahweh.
                    > Finally I note that Geza Vermes argues "kyrios"
                    > was also used to translate the Aramaic title "mar" meaning "respected teacher,
                    > master, lord" and that we find the same word
                    > here in the Aramaic formula "Maranatha!"
                    >
                    > Of course, JA is having none of this, sneering:
                    >
                    > "If the Aramaic passage were in some way relevant, you'd notice that there is
                    > a pronominal suffix on the `mar', rendering
                    > your abysmal attempt at contradiction useless. You do need to know something
                    > about what you are dealing with."
                    >
                    > Personally, I can't see how the pronominal suffix changes what I've noted.
                    > But anyway. He goes on:
                    >
                    > "Consider the several references to "the lord" in 1 Cor 7: Paul is happy to
                    > use this non-titular "kyrios" and there is
                    > nothing to indicate what the reference is. If there is not a single overt
                    > meaning for his readers, how can he expect them to
                    > know what it means? Please, think about this. It might be reasonable to people
                    > brought up to accept the trinity without much
                    > question to be able to flit from god to Jesus in a single bound, but it is not
                    > reasonable to accept the non-trinitarian Paul
                    > to do the same."
                    >
                    > I have my own thoughts about this, but am curious as to what others think
                    > about what this guy is claiming. He seems to be
                    > saying that unless any use of "kyrios" by Paul is "qualified" (ie "Our Lord
                    > Jesus" etc) then ANY reference to "the Lord" by
                    > Paul must be to Yahweh and not Jesus.
                    >
                    > This strikes me as a contrived argument to make clear references to recent,
                    > historical Jesus by Paul disappear, but I'm
                    > wondering if there is some linguistic argument against what he is saying that
                    > I may have missed.
                    >
                    > Tim O'Neill
                    >
                    > Armarium Magnum – Ancient and Medieval history books reviewed
                    > http://armariummagnus.blogspot.com/
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > ------------------------------------
                    >
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                    >
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                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > ------------------------------------
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                    >
                  • Jack Kilmon
                    ... From: yeshua666 Sent: Friday, November 12, 2010 4:36 PM To: Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the Lord
                    Message 9 of 18 , Nov 13, 2010
                      --------------------------------------------------
                      From: "yeshua666" <t.c.oneill2@...>
                      Sent: Friday, November 12, 2010 4:36 PM
                      To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                      Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios"
                      in Paul generally

                      >
                      >
                      > --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jack Kilmon" <jkilmon@...> wrote:
                      >
                      >> I have been having this same conversation on "Jesus Mysteries" concerning
                      >> Josephus XX on James, Galatians 1:19 and Mark 6:3. The problem that
                      >> mythers
                      >> have is that every Josephan scholar in the local cluster of galaxies in
                      >> the
                      >> Orion Spur of the Milky Way (well, there is this one guy on Alpha Cetus
                      >> 4)
                      >> affirms what is obvious about the language that it is authentic and,
                      >> unlike
                      >> the Testimonium in XVIII, unscrewed around with by Christians.
                      >
                      > And this guy would dismiss that as an argument from authority, an appeal
                      > to truth by democracy and evidence of a cultural Christian hegemony that
                      > even has atheists like me in its crushing grip.

                      I don't know why there is always confusion on what the Argumentum Ad
                      Verecundium means. It refers to an appeal to "authorities" (in quotes) who
                      are not really authorities. If I appeal to scholars like Thackery, Feldman
                      and Klausner on this issue, it is not a logical fallacy.


                      >
                      >
                      > The biggest
                      >> problem for the mythers is that the James passage (which I also think
                      >> gives
                      >> us a clue what happened to John Zebedee) is predicated on a previous
                      >> treatment of "Jesus, the so-called Christ" as a witness to an earlier
                      >> unedited TF.
                      >
                      >
                      > Agreed. But he dismisses that as an assumption.
                      >
                      > Most mythers have their agenda but have no Greek and certainly
                      >> no Aramaic. ADELFON IHSOU TOU LEGOMENOU XRISTOU IAKWBOS ONOMA AUTW.
                      >> Literally, "...brother of Jesus who was said to be the Messiah, himself
                      >> Jacob by name 'is in the syntactic structure of Josephus' Aramaic draft
                      >> of
                      >> Antiquities.
                      >
                      > Now this is interesting. Could you elaborate?

                      Greek and the Semitic languages, Hebrew and Aramaic, have different
                      structures and word orders. Whenever Aramaic is translated into Greek, it
                      can be somewhat cumbersome as evidenced by the Gospel of Mark which is a
                      Greek text written by a bilingual Aramaic speaker (see Maurice Casey,
                      "Aramaic Sources of Mark's Gospel). The Aramaic interference in
                      Translational Greek leaves an obvious signature in the word, order or the
                      occurrence of casus pendens, asyndeton, partitive de and a Semitic
                      orthography. In the case of the Gospels, for example, there were Aramaic
                      oral and written source materials for their authors (See Matthew Black, An
                      Aramaic Approach to the Gospels and Acts). Because Aramaic was the
                      "language of the street" in 2nd temple Palestine, it is even more idiomatic
                      than the more literate Hebrew. Since my studies have always focused on the
                      sayings of Jesus which were certainly voiced originally in Aramaic and
                      orally transmitted the same, reconstructions in Aramaic from their Greek
                      translations in the New Testament can be revealing. Aramaic is a language
                      with a number of meanings for one word. Greek has a number of word forms
                      for one meaning. As a consequence the Greek texts of the NT often display
                      variations in their reading. Reconstructions in Aramaic often clarifies the
                      reading by distilling to one meaning. An example to be precise, the Aramaic
                      word mishtutha has a double meaning, 1. banquet, 2. wedding. Of course, in
                      this 1st century Middle Eastern context, a wedding was about the only time
                      the am-ha'aretz had a banquet. In Luke 14:8 the Aramaic word was translated
                      to GAMOUS in Greek while in the mss D it Syr-c Matthew it is translated to
                      DEIPNHSAI but both Greek words crystallize to to m$twt) in Aramaic. You can
                      see, therefore, how a banquet room can become a "place of marriage" in
                      Coptic Thomas and then a "bridal suite" in English. This, like "HATE" ones
                      father, and mother, etc in Luke 14:23 in an Aramaism of mistranslation.
                      "Banquet" or "feast" is the correct reading.

                      Since historical Jesus research has been based on the sayings materials, it
                      has been a mistake (IMO gross negligence) to ignore the Aramaic background
                      and interference in the Greek of the MSS (See M. Casey, An Aramaic Approach
                      to Q and Joseph Fitzmyer, The Semitic Background of the New Testament).

                      So also for Josephus who wrote his works in his own language (Aramaic) and
                      employed "synergoi" to translate them into Greek with which Josephus writes
                      that he was uncomfortable. As in the New Testament for its "Jesus stuff,"
                      Aramaisms in Josephan Greek are signatures of the pen of Josephus himself.
                      The James Passage in Ant. XXX is in Aramaic word order. Josephus wrote it,
                      not some later Christian monk/scribe abusing his wine ration.



                      >
                      >> The problem for mythers is quite clear. Someone that has siblings,
                      >> multiply
                      >> attested by historical contemporaries, cannot be a myth.
                      >
                      > He dismisses that as simply a "tradition" and says it's like the
                      > "traditions" about King Arthur and Robin Hood and so says that kind of
                      > thing can't be used as evidence there was a genuine historical Jesus.

                      No ONE thing or single tool is certain evidence of a genuine historical
                      Jesus. Even if there had been a skeleton showing forensic evidence of
                      crucifixion in a Yeshua Bar Yahosef ossuary, it would be provocative but not
                      certain evidence on the level I am accustomed to in science. What can be
                      said is that the combination of many critical historical and text-critical
                      tools makes it most likely that an historical Jesus existed.

                      shlama amek

                      Jack Kilmon
                      San Antonio, TX



                      >
                      > Tim O'Neill
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > ------------------------------------
                      >
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                      >
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                    • Jack Kilmon
                      A discussion list, even one for strictly scholarly discourse, will not last long in this era of blogs, if one will not engage. As long as one s interlocutor
                      Message 10 of 18 , Nov 13, 2010
                        A discussion list, even one for strictly scholarly discourse, will not last
                        long in this era of blogs, if one will not engage. As long as one's
                        interlocutor is not a crackpot and has a viewpoint that is rational, it
                        should be engaged. I would certainly not place Tim in the same league as
                        "birthers" and "truthers." What I call the "extreme mythist position" is
                        not just the reasonable opinion that the pre-existent, virgin born, water
                        walking, resurrecting "Christ of Faith" was an accretion of myths but that
                        also the historical personage of Jesus of Nazareth is a myth. This is a
                        position that should be engaged and as long as the person is not a whack
                        job, I will engage.

                        Jack Kilmon

                        --------------------------------------------------
                        From: "Horace Jeffery Hodges" <jefferyhodges@...>
                        Sent: Friday, November 12, 2010 4:42 PM
                        To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                        Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios"
                        in Paul generally

                        > Why bother arguing with the fellow? He's apparently in the same category
                        > as
                        > "Birthers" or "Truthers" -- no amount of evidence would convince him.
                        > Unless dealing with him happens to be fun, just stop debating him.
                        >
                        > Jeffery Hodges
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > ________________________________
                        > From: yeshua666 <t.c.oneill2@...>
                        > To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                        > Sent: Sat, November 13, 2010 7:36:16 AM
                        > Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of
                        > "kyrios" in
                        > Paul generally
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jack Kilmon" <jkilmon@...> wrote:
                        >
                        >> I have been having this same conversation on "Jesus Mysteries" concerning
                        >> Josephus XX on James, Galatians 1:19 and Mark 6:3. The problem that
                        >> mythers
                        >> have is that every Josephan scholar in the local cluster of galaxies in
                        >> the
                        >> Orion Spur of the Milky Way (well, there is this one guy on Alpha Cetus
                        >> 4)
                        >> affirms what is obvious about the language that it is authentic and,
                        >> unlike
                        >> the Testimonium in XVIII, unscrewed around with by Christians.
                        >
                        > And this guy would dismiss that as an argument from authority, an appeal
                        > to
                        > truth by democracy and evidence of a cultural Christian hegemony that even
                        > has
                        > atheists like me in its crushing grip.
                        >
                        >
                        > The biggest
                        >> problem for the mythers is that the James passage (which I also think
                        >> gives
                        >> us a clue what happened to John Zebedee) is predicated on a previous
                        >> treatment of "Jesus, the so-called Christ" as a witness to an earlier
                        >> unedited TF.
                        >
                        >
                        > Agreed. But he dismisses that as an assumption.
                        >
                        > Most mythers have their agenda but have no Greek and certainly
                        >> no Aramaic. ADELFON IHSOU TOU LEGOMENOU XRISTOU IAKWBOS ONOMA AUTW.
                        >> Literally, "...brother of Jesus who was said to be the Messiah, himself
                        >> Jacob by name 'is in the syntactic structure of Josephus' Aramaic draft
                        >> of
                        >> Antiquities.
                        >
                        > Now this is interesting. Could you elaborate?
                        >
                        >> The problem for mythers is quite clear. Someone that has siblings,
                        >> multiply
                        >> attested by historical contemporaries, cannot be a myth.
                        >
                        > He dismisses that as simply a "tradition" and says it's like the
                        > "traditions"
                        > about King Arthur and Robin Hood and so says that kind of thing can't be
                        > used as
                        > evidence there was a genuine historical Jesus.
                        >
                        > Tim O'Neill
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > ------------------------------------
                        >
                        > 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/
                        >
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                      • Horace Jeffery Hodges
                        I don t know Tim and was relying on Yeshua666 s description of his interlocutor s stubbornness, which seemed excessive, but if he s rational, then my advice
                        Message 11 of 18 , Nov 13, 2010
                          I don't know "Tim" and was relying on Yeshua666's description of his
                          interlocutor's stubbornness, which seemed excessive, but if he's rational, then
                          my advice would be different.

                          Jeffery Hodges




                          ________________________________
                          From: Jack Kilmon <jkilmon@...>
                          To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                          Sent: Sun, November 14, 2010 3:59:26 AM
                          Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios" in
                          Paul generally

                          A discussion list, even one for strictly scholarly discourse, will not last
                          long in this era of blogs, if one will not engage.  As long as one's
                          interlocutor is not a crackpot and has a viewpoint that is rational, it
                          should be engaged.  I would certainly not place Tim in the same league as
                          "birthers" and "truthers."  What I call the "extreme mythist position" is
                          not just the reasonable opinion that the pre-existent, virgin born, water
                          walking, resurrecting "Christ of Faith" was an accretion of myths but that
                          also the historical personage of Jesus of Nazareth is a myth.  This is a
                          position that should be engaged and as long as the person is not a whack
                          job, I will engage.

                          Jack Kilmon

                          --------------------------------------------------
                          From: "Horace Jeffery Hodges" <jefferyhodges@...>
                          Sent: Friday, November 12, 2010 4:42 PM
                          To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
                          Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of "kyrios"
                          in Paul generally

                          > Why bother arguing with the fellow? He's apparently in the same category
                          > as
                          > "Birthers" or "Truthers" -- no amount of evidence would convince him.
                          > Unless dealing with him happens to be fun, just stop debating him.
                          >
                          > Jeffery Hodges
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > ________________________________
                          > From: yeshua666 <t.c.oneill2@...>
                          > To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
                          > Sent: Sat, November 13, 2010 7:36:16 AM
                          > Subject: Re: [XTalk] Is Jesus the "Lord" in Gal 1:19 and the use of
                          > "kyrios" in
                          > Paul generally
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jack Kilmon" <jkilmon@...> wrote:
                          >
                          >> I have been having this same conversation on "Jesus Mysteries" concerning
                          >> Josephus XX on James, Galatians 1:19 and Mark 6:3.  The problem that
                          >> mythers
                          >> have is that every Josephan scholar in the local cluster of galaxies in
                          >> the
                          >> Orion Spur of the Milky Way (well, there is this one guy on Alpha Cetus
                          >> 4)
                          >> affirms what is obvious about the language that it is authentic and,
                          >> unlike
                          >> the Testimonium in XVIII, unscrewed around with by Christians.
                          >
                          > And this guy would dismiss that as an argument from authority, an appeal
                          > to
                          > truth by democracy and evidence of a cultural Christian hegemony that even
                          > has
                          > atheists like me in its crushing grip.
                          >
                          >
                          > The biggest
                          >> problem for the mythers is that the James passage (which I also think
                          >> gives
                          >> us a clue what happened to John Zebedee) is predicated on a previous
                          >> treatment of "Jesus, the so-called Christ" as a witness to an earlier
                          >> unedited TF.
                          >
                          >
                          > Agreed.  But he dismisses that as an assumption.
                          >
                          > Most mythers have their agenda but have no Greek and certainly
                          >> no Aramaic.  ADELFON IHSOU TOU LEGOMENOU XRISTOU IAKWBOS ONOMA AUTW.
                          >> Literally, "...brother of Jesus who was said to be the Messiah, himself
                          >> Jacob by name 'is in the syntactic structure of Josephus' Aramaic draft
                          >> of
                          >> Antiquities.
                          >
                          > Now this is interesting.  Could you elaborate?
                          >
                          >> The problem for mythers is quite clear.  Someone that has siblings,
                          >> multiply
                          >> attested by historical contemporaries, cannot be a myth.
                          >
                          > He dismisses that as simply a "tradition" and says it's like the
                          > "traditions"
                          > about King Arthur and Robin Hood and so says that kind of thing can't be
                          > used as
                          > evidence there was a genuine historical Jesus.
                          >
                          > Tim O'Neill
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > ------------------------------------
                          >
                          > 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:
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                          >
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                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >


                          ------------------------------------

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                          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        • yeshua666
                          First of all I d like to thank everyone who responded to my initial inquiry for their comments and contributions. Several people asked why I m bothering to
                          Message 12 of 18 , Nov 14, 2010
                            First of all I'd like to thank everyone who responded to my initial inquiry for their comments and contributions. Several people asked why I'm bothering to debate this HJ Agnostic and suggested that if he is as irrational and doctrinaire as he seems that this is a waste of time. Sorry to say, but he's actually rather more irrational and doctrinaire than I've made out and vicious and spiteful into the bargain. I am under no illusions at all that I am ever going to get him to back down about anything, let alone change his mind.

                            So why bother talking to him at all? In the years I've been reading on the historical Jesus I've noticed a slow rise in these evangelical ahistoricists. They have gone from being a tiny handful on Usenet 15 years ago to dominating the conversation in some quarters. As an atheist and secular humanist myself, it's been dismaying to see these people virtually take over any discussion of the origins of Christianity on atheist and sceptics' fora and slam anyone who dares suggest that there was a Jewish preacher as the origin of the Jesus stories.

                            I learned long ago that virtually none of these people are convinced by argument. Most of them stick to the idea that there is no way we can say a HJ was likely in the face of all evidence. A few, such as this guy, have carefully constructed a position over many years that means he has standard replies to any objection and counter-argument, backed up with scorn, sarcasm and insinuation that no-one is as learned and well-read as he is.

                            I bother with him and people like him because there are others on the sidelines who are not convinced either way and who, unlike the fanatics, actually *can* be swayed by good argument. So far these observers are unconvinced by this guy's bluster, but he posts (cut and paste) contributions of many thousands of words several times a day and it's hard to counter everything he says because the sheer volume of his contributions all but drowns out counter-arguments. So I'm choosing to concentrate on his arguments' weakest points – the number of supposed "Christian interpolations" his position requires and the mentions of James in both Josephus and Galatians.

                            Since several here have been good enough to make some suggestions to me, I hope you all don't mind if I respond to them in one post:

                            --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, David Cavanagh <davidcavanagh@...> wrote:

                            > Well, I think I would move this argument away from the complex
                            > grammatical issues, and ask JA to provide contemporary evidence for the
                            > use of the idiom "the Lord's brother" as referring to a follower
                            > of/believer in YHWH - I think he would be hard pressed to find any.

                            Which he knows. So he broadens things by noting that Paul does use the term "brother"/"brothers" in several places to mean simply "a fellow believer" and asks why it can't mean that here. When it's noted that he also refers to "the Lord's brothers" in 1Corinthians 9:5 he claims this is simply a group of non-apostles who are equal to "Cephas" and "the other apostles". When it's pointed out that this group is otherwise unattested, he points out that there are a lot of otherwise unattested people mentioned in Paul's letters.

                            --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "Jack Kilmon" <jkilmon@...> wrote:

                            > > Now this is interesting. Could you elaborate?
                            >
                            > Greek and the Semitic languages, Hebrew and Aramaic, have different
                            > structures and word orders. Whenever Aramaic is translated into Greek, it
                            > can be somewhat cumbersome as evidenced by the Gospel of Mark which is a
                            > Greek text written by a bilingual Aramaic speaker (see Maurice Casey,
                            > "Aramaic Sources of Mark's Gospel).

                            [snip]

                            > So also for Josephus who wrote his works in his own language (Aramaic) and
                            > employed "synergoi" to translate them into Greek with which Josephus writes
                            > that he was uncomfortable. As in the New Testament for its "Jesus stuff,"
                            > Aramaisms in Josephan Greek are signatures of the pen of Josephus himself.
                            > The James Passage in Ant. XXX is in Aramaic word order. Josephus wrote it,
                            > not some later Christian monk/scribe abusing his wine ration.

                            Jack – thanks very much for that. I was aware of Casey's work (though not that of Fitzmeyer) but thanks for the insight. I did guess this was what you were referring to, but I was actually asking for some more specific detail on how "ADELFON IHSOU TOU LEGOMENOU XRISTOU IAKWBOS ONOMA AUTW" is identifiably Aramaic in its syntactic structure rather than Greek. How does the syntax here differ from what we would expect for a Greek speaker and how does it conform better to Aramaic? Apologies, but my grasp of Greek is poor and my Aramaic is non-existent. But it strikes me that this line of inquiry is potentially a very useful argument against the persistent claims that any mention of Jesus in Josephus has to be an interpolation.

                            I also wasn't aware that Josephus wasn't comfortable writing Greek and had his works translated from Aramaic – do you have a reference for that?

                            Thanks also to David Hindley's analysis of the uses of the word "KURIOS". And yes David, this is FRDB's "spin" we're talking about. It seems he's declared some kind of internet vendetta against me and is now following me to other fora to pursue it relentlessly. I suppose I should be flattered or something.

                            Thanks again to all,

                            Tim O'Neill
                          • ehub035
                            [from Geoff Riggs; not Liz H., my better half] ... on the historical Jesus I ve noticed a slow rise in these evangelical ahistoricists. They have gone from
                            Message 13 of 18 , Nov 15, 2010
                              [from Geoff Riggs; not Liz H., my better half]

                              --- In crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com, "yeshua666" <t.c.oneill2@...> wrote:
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > So why bother talking to him at all? In the years I've been reading
                              on the historical Jesus I've noticed a slow rise in these evangelical
                              ahistoricists. They have gone from being a tiny handful on Usenet 15
                              years ago to dominating the conversation in some quarters. As an
                              atheist and secular humanist myself, it's been dismaying to see these
                              people virtually take over any discussion of the origins of Christianity
                              on atheist and sceptics' fora and slam anyone who dares suggest that
                              there was a Jewish preacher as the origin of the Jesus stories.
                              >
                              > I learned long ago that virtually none of these people are convinced
                              by argument. Most of them stick to the idea that there is no way we can
                              say a HJ was likely in the face of all evidence. A few, such as this
                              guy, have carefully constructed a position over many years that means he
                              has standard replies to any objection and counter-argument, backed up
                              with scorn, sarcasm and insinuation that no-one is as learned and
                              well-read as he is.
                              > Tim O'Neill
                              >

                              And I must urgently second everything that Mr. O'Neill has stated here,
                              with an added concern. Everything that these evangelical ahistoricists
                              habitually write in these days has not only had the effect of sabotaging
                              serious discussions on the Web concerning the latest professional
                              historical research, again and again. Their increasing numbers also
                              seem to both reflect and propel a burgeoning "movement" (I can think of
                              no other word) aimed at discrediting any "taint" of intellectualism in
                              addressing any Scriptural or non-Scriptural materials related to the
                              Historical Jesus whatsoever. While I am aware that many view certain
                              kinds of Christian fundamentalisms as also tantamount to an attempt at
                              "terrorizing" intellectual inquiry into Scripture off the "public
                              square", these militant ahistoricists are now doing essentially the same
                              thing from a rigorously materialistic perspective. In other words, they
                              disrupt any and all such serious discussions by proclaiming with all the
                              fervour of the most fanatic zealot that every jot and tittle of material
                              on the historical Jesus of Nazareth, Scriptural and non-Scriptural
                              alike, is purely and entirely made up, right down to the most multiply
                              attested saying and the most mundane detail in the most purely Roman
                              chronicle or letter.

                              Some, like Mr. O'Neil and myself, are frankly growing alarmed by this
                              trend. It is starting to smack of a fanatic type of would-be thought
                              control as bad as anything ever imputed (rightly or wrongly) to the most
                              orthodox and/or fanatical fundamentalist. Where some fundamentalists
                              proclaim adamantly that every word in every text in Scripture is pure
                              history precisely as it really happened and therefore not appropriate or
                              proper for modern historical analysis and research, these ahistoricists
                              proclaim just as adamantly that every word in every Roman chronicle and
                              every Roman letter related to Jesus of Nazareth is just as much -- and
                              as uniformly -- pure fiction, from A to Z, as anything in Scripture and
                              therefore not appropriate or proper for modern historical analysis and
                              research. The end result is the same as with the most intolerant
                              fundamentalist: an attempt at de-legitimizing any attempt at serious
                              discussion and give-and-take on historical research into the Historical
                              Jesus and Christian Origins.

                              Tied to this is an apparent willingness to trash the very discipline of
                              history itself, as if the rigorous conclusions by the most recent
                              historians related to, say, the more probable versus the less probable
                              details for a Hannibal or a Boadicea (sp.?), are merely grounded on
                              assumptions pulled out of thin air! This is tantamount to would-be book
                              burning aimed at whole schools of historical research. It is growing
                              quite terrifying, frankly, and I applaud posters like Mr. O'Neill who
                              are ready to see the urgency of taking a stand and challenging an
                              outlook as profoundly ignorant as this one, once and for all. Too many
                              are being hoodwinked by this growing outlook today, and I'm starting to
                              see younger and increasingly inexperienced "students" of history
                              adopting this outlook on the Web unquestioningly. It's getting worse
                              for not being properly challenged.

                              It is no exaggeration to suggest that, if unchallenged, this profoundly
                              anti-intellectual outlook against most modern serious historians and
                              scholars of the ancient world might soon imperil freedom of inquiry way
                              beyond the parameters of the online world.

                              Seriously,

                              Geoffrey Riggs
                            • E Bruce Brooks
                              To: Crosstalk Cc: GPG, WSW In Response To: Geoff Riggs On: Trashing History From: Bruce I am much in sympathy with the tone of Geoff s recent post. Here is one
                              Message 14 of 18 , Nov 15, 2010
                                To: Crosstalk
                                Cc: GPG, WSW
                                In Response To: Geoff Riggs
                                On: Trashing History
                                From: Bruce

                                I am much in sympathy with the tone of Geoff's recent post. Here is one
                                extract from it:

                                GEOFF: Tied to this is an apparent willingness to trash the very discipline
                                of history itself, as if the rigorous conclusions by the most recent
                                historians related to, say, the more probable versus the less probable
                                details for a Hannibal or a Boadicea (sp.?), are merely grounded on
                                assumptions pulled out of thin air!

                                BRUCE: Just so, and unfortunately this is no new thing. The textual
                                sciences, and with them my own specialty of philology, have been under
                                worldwide attack since approximately 7 July 1937, and the trend has now
                                reached what can fairly be called alarming proportions. A recent article in
                                the Chronicle of Higher Education thought that there might be a future for
                                the humanities, but probably outside academe. I have been pointing to this
                                probability for some years now, and if the Chronicle (never the fastest car
                                on the track) is catching up, things must be really far advanced.

                                The methodological crisis for the historical discipline was perceived long
                                ago, and registered in several book-length treatments. I might mention Keith
                                Windschuttle, The Killing of History, Encounter 1996. There are some
                                possibly helpful notes in the Methodology section of the Warring States
                                Project web site:

                                http://www.umass.edu/wsp/methodology/index.html

                                One of those pages, The Attack on History, picks up on Windschuttle and a
                                few like indictments.

                                As Geoff notes, inflexible anti-intellectuallism simply fouls and stymies
                                discussion. What to do? Convincing the errants is not a realistic prospect;
                                they are already happy (or viably unhappy) where they are. It seems to me
                                that there are roughly two options, or rather two sides of one option, that
                                option being separation:

                                1. Banish the offenders. 1 Cor 16:22. With adequate list management this can
                                be done; it is what list managers are there for. It takes a certain amount
                                of nerve.

                                2. Withdraw and start a more productive conversation elsewhere. This happens
                                all the time. The history of government in England (or in China) is simply a
                                series of replacements of obsolete and dysfunctional institutions by new and
                                at least briefly functional ones. There is no reason to expect E-discourse
                                to pattern any differently, over the long haul.

                                It was some years ago, if memory does not deceive me, that dissidents
                                seceded from the American Historical Association and its increasingly
                                PC-clotted discourse, and formed their own group.

                                http://www.bu.edu/historic/about.html

                                That the new and functional discussions will be small is not necessarily a
                                disadvantage. We know from Parkinson that the ideal size of a committee
                                which has to decide things (and otherwise it is just talk, and talk is a
                                waste of our time on the planet), is five. Under careful management, that
                                number can be exceeded, but not necessarily for long. My rule of thumb: if
                                your discussion group is too large to fit into a booth at the local
                                pizzeria, it is too large, period.

                                Not that the whole field needs to be reduced to that size, but that this is
                                the ideal discussion module. The field, ideally, is the result of linkage
                                between the different discussions. Ask the next naval architect you meet, Do
                                you design an ocean-going ship as one watertight unit? The answer will
                                probably be, No, but as many such units dynamically linked together.

                                How the different groups link up is a question with many answers, all of
                                them cheap and easy. Journal, E, conference calls, pony express,
                                miniconferences. Our group has used all of them, at one time or another, and
                                can speak to their practicability.

                                Seriously suggested,

                                Bruce

                                E Bruce Brooks
                                Warring States Project
                                University of Massachusetts at Amherst
                                http://www.umass.edu/wsp
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