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A Three Year Ministry

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  • Brian McCarthy
    Daniel, I like your argument, and would just like to offer what is in rel. to it a minor correction: if I am not mistaken in the 4th gospel Jesus is in
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 25, 2000
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      Daniel,
       
      I like your argument, and would just like to offer what is in rel. to it a minor correction: if I am not mistaken in the 4th gospel Jesus is in Jerusalem 5 times not 3;
       
      [And, after the first time, does not again leave except when his actions have put his life in danger, when he withdraws and waits for the dust to settle to come back and pick up on his unfinished business there that a premature death must not be allowed to permanently interrupt. It early becomes the sole focus of his mission. And that mission must be completed before he is free to die and return to the Father]
       
      The five times are a) 2:13 Passover; b) 5:1 some festival; c) 7:10 Booths; d) 11:17 Bethany* to raise Lazarus and e) finally, 12:1 & 12.
      *It is legitimate to include the Bethany visit because Bethany is--in this gospel at least and probably in reality--functionally a part of greater Jerusalem. See how people react and how Caiaphas reacts. 
       
      But how much of this is theology and drama, and how much history?
       
      What is clear is that the Synoptic scenario where Jesus arrives for the first time, an unknown from Galilee, and within a week is hanging on a Roman cross, seems improbable in the extreme, historically speaking. It makes it difficult to explain why Jesus died, thougho of course one can postulate pure bad luck--being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Many have been killed simply by reason of bad luck. some silly mistake etc. 
       
      I always enjoy reading the 4th gospel's account of the temple incident on his first visit, the only time he leaves freely. His action is followed by a simple discussion with "the Jews" with no dangerous consequences. He leaves when and because he wants to.
       
      Brian McCarthy 
      Madison WI
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