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  • Bob Schacht
    ... Dennis, I agree with you. Years ago on Crosstalk, I had an extended conversation with Stevan Davies and others about what the essence of the Gospels was,
    Message 1 of 48 , Jan 17, 2011
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      At 08:42 AM 12/29/2010, Dennis Goffin wrote:
      > You say "What I think "the Gospel of God" means in this
      > particular line of Mark (early in that text, be it noted) is
      > precisely what it says, and what John the Baptist would have meant
      > by it: the Good news about God is that God forgives, and that
      > repentance accordingly saves. John (if we believe Mark, and even if
      > we don't, it is probably relevant to what Mark says elsewhere) was
      > pulling large crowds on the law or less this proposition: the
      > chance to be forgiven, and thus cleansed of sin, and thus made fit
      > for the Good Option which was going to appear very soon, along with
      > a highly undesirable Bad Option."
      > In my Bible, however, the phrase that I read is the
      > gospel of the kingdom of God, a totally different
      > proposition. This is what all the parables about the kingdom were
      > about. What is the Good Option about, if it isn't about this? ...

      I agree with you. Years ago on Crosstalk, I had an extended
      conversation with Stevan Davies and others about what the essence of
      the Gospels was, and after considering many things, the one thing we
      could both absolutely agree on was that the historical Jesus,
      whatever else he might have said, was clearly interested in the
      *kingdom of God*. However, if there were a Gospel of God associated
      with all his talk about that kingdom, we could not agree on what the
      historical Jesus said about it.

      So I think that you are right to return the emphasis to talk about
      the *kingdom* of God. People will argue this and that about what he
      said about the kingdom, but counter-arguments can also be found for
      every such thesis, even if they are not re-posted every time such an
      argument is presented.

      The Jesus Seminar came somewhat to the same conclusion. In The Five
      Gospels, (pp. 40f, 136f) they agreed that the historical Jesus did,
      indeed, talk about the Kingdom of God (or, as they translate it,
      God's Imperial Rule), but found it difficult to state firm
      conclusions about it. They wrote (p. 137),
      The Fellows of the Jesus Seminar are inclined to the second option:
      Jesus conceived of God's Rule as all around him but difficult to
      discern. God was so real for him that he could not distinguish God's
      present activity from any future activity. He had a poetic sense of
      time in which the future and the present merged, simply melted
      together, in the intensity of his vision. But Jesus' uncommon views
      were obfuscated by the more pedestrian conceptions of John, on the
      one side, and by the equally pedestrian views of the early Christian
      community, on the other.
      It is not often that I hear John's gospel described as "pedestrian,"
      and it is even less often that we hear the Jesus Seminar giving much
      credence to John's testimony. But their analysis should be sufficient
      warning against the uncritical acceptance of any theory of what Jesus
      meant by the Kingdom of God, much less any proposed "Gospel of God."

      Bob Schacht
      Northern Arizona University

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    • RSBrenchley@aol.com
      Message 48 of 48 , Jan 30, 2011
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        <<Ariel, D.T., A Survey of Coin Finds in Jerusalem,
        Liber Annuus 32, 1982, pp 273-326.

        Unless we have an old print copy in the pre-1985 stack here,
        the data for denarii in Jerusalem is out of reach
        just now, so, at least for the time being, I'll just shift to your
        view that there weren't that many around in the city.

        David M.>>

        I'm having trouble getting hold of it as well, so I'll have to go by
        memory, unfortunately. I did contact Ariel himself, but he's got nothing beyond
        a single paper copy. While it's not strictly on topic, I do have H Gitler's
        (Liber Annuus 1996), which covers bronze coinage from the city. No
        imperial bronze is recorded from before the 4th Century, after the abolition of
        the provincial mints, and their replacement with imperial ones.


        Robert Brenchley
        Birmingham UK

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