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Re: [XTalk] Re: historical method

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  • Bob Schacht
    ... I think it might be important to note here that the difference between these two categories is that the exorcisms and healings are regarded as
    Message 1 of 23 , Jan 7, 2001
      At 10:10 PM 1/7/01 +0000, Thomas A. Kopecek wrote:
      >...In the last unit of my Christology course my students work through a
      >couple of reconstructions of the historical Jesus on their own and
      >play them off against one another in final papers. They used Sanders'
      >Historical Figure and Borg's New Vision, and both a number of students
      >and I had some trouble following exactly what Sanders was doing with
      >Jesus' miracles at the very end of his chapter devoted to the subject.
      >
      >This *does*, I believe, bear on the issue of historical method that
      >Bob and Mark have been discussing.
      >
      >Sanders argues that Mt 11:4-5 tells us Jesus' own view of his miracles
      >in response to John the Baptist's question about whether Jesus was "he
      >who is to come": "Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind
      >receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the
      >deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news
      >preached to them."
      >
      >Like Borg, Sanders contends that "Jesus was known as a healer." And
      >he goes further and contends that Jesus saw himself as not only a
      >healer but, it seems, more, given the Mt 11 quotation. Yet he also
      >endorses Cicero's rejection of miracles, the modern view that effects
      >need naturalistic causes, and a typical division of Jesus' miracles
      >into exorcisms and healings on the one side and nature miracles on the
      >other.

      I think it might be important to note here that the difference between
      these two categories is that the exorcisms and healings are regarded as
      psychosomatic (i.e., either the disease or the cure is viewed as a
      psychological process rather than natural process)[Sanders, p.158], whereas
      the nature miracles are viewed as non-psychological.

      > What I don't recall Sanders discussing (maybe he did, and I
      >missed it) was how "raising the dead" doesn't qualify as a nature
      >miracle.

      I don't recall either-- but maybe it depends on how dead is dead. That is,
      what if someone is comatose and regarded as dead, but not dead by modern
      clinical standards? Then if the person is "raised," it is a kind of healing
      miracle rather than a nature miracle. You are not helped by the fact that
      Sanders seems not to address "raising the dead" in his chapter on miracles,
      instead dealing with this category in his Epilogue: the Resurrection (esp.
      p. 278). But also I think you are trying to force Sanders to do something
      that he really doesn't want to do, despite using the distinction between
      healings, exorcisms, and "natural" miracles (p. 143). That is, this latter
      distinction is primarily a modern one (Cicero notwithstanding), uncommon in
      the first century (e.g., p. 141), and Sanders states that his purpose is to
      understand miracles from the ancient perspective, when ideas on what was
      "natural" and what wasn't were different from ours.

      I note that you use the category of "raising from the dead" rather than
      "resurrection". We tend to put "Resurrection" in a special box marked
      "Christian belief" and then use some other term for any similar occurrence
      (nowadays "near death experiences" are the stuff of popular books, and the
      objective difference between these and "resurrection" is sometimes
      unclear). But to the first century mind, being raised from the dead was, if
      not an everyday experience, at least a part of Jewish tradition (Hebrews
      11:35; Sanders p. 276n.6 with references on p. 311 to I Kings 17:8-14; II
      Kings 4:18-36; Mark 5:21-43&//; Luke 7:11-17; Acts 9:36-43; John 11:5-44;
      Philostratus, Life of Appolonius of Tyrana 4:45; Pliny, Natural History
      26:13; Apuleius, Florida 19 ). I think I read somewhere that ancient Jewish
      tradition held that the spirit lurked around the body for three days, so
      that it is significant that both in the case of Lazarus and the case of
      Jesus, our sources attempt to make the case that they were "dead" for more
      than 3 days, so that your category of "raising from the dead" may need to
      be subdivided. But basically the problem as described by Sanders on p. 278
      is that both Paul and Luke, when dealing with the Resurrection of Jesus,
      was "an experience that does not fit a known category." Whether the same
      would apply to the other cases, such as Lazarus, I don't know.

      >...Is Sanders here going beyond the consensus that Mark is talking
      >about, is he simply avoiding the issue of the category of miracle to
      >which raising the dead belongs, or what? It seems to me that Borg
      >operates within what Mark is calling the consensus.

      I think he's avoiding the issue; otherwise, he would have dealt with it in
      his chapter on miracles.

      >Have I set this up incorrectly? If so, how? If I haven't, any thoughts
      >from anyone?

      I'd challenge your class with the question: from the first century
      perspective, would "raising the dead" be considered a form of healing or
      exorcism, or something more like what we now regard as the "nature"
      miracles? Or is this distinction anachronistic? Was the resurrection of
      Jesus regarded as sui generis, or in the same category as the examples
      cited in Sanders' footnote? From a first century perspective, how would
      "raising the dead" be explained (using Sanders' footnote plus Hebrews 11:35
      as the database).


      >Tom
      >
      >BTW: Stephen Carlson and I had a very interesting exchange on
      >Synoptic-L about Stephen's belief that the portrait of Peter in Mt
      >is, in important respects, more negative than the portrait of Peter in
      >Mk. Stephen was his usual lucid and careful self, but after awhile I
      >simply faded on him, not having the time necessary to do all the
      >required research and not being particularly expert in NT criticism
      >to begin with. Unfortunately, no one else on Synoptic-L joined in the
      >fray, and I was very much wanting to have someone who knows more than
      >I do come in and seek to adjudicate between my defense of what I
      >consider to be the standard position in scholarship and Stephen's
      >challenge to it.
      >
      >Since Stephen originally offered his view a few years ago on
      >Crosstalk (and it was not taken up), would any be interested in
      >Stephen or me putting together a synopsis of the arguments we offered
      >on either side (mine were very tentative indeed, since NT scholarship
      >isn't my professional field) and then joining in?

      Yes! Please do!

      Bob


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Thomas A. Kopecek
      ... [My comment] ... [Bob s response] ... That is, ... modern ... healing ... fact that ... miracles, ... Resurrection (esp. ... something ... between ...
      Message 2 of 23 , Jan 8, 2001
        --- In crosstalk2@egroups.com, Bob Schacht <r_schacht@y...> wrote:

        [My comment]

        > > What I don't recall Sanders discussing (maybe he did, and I
        > >missed it) was how "raising the dead" doesn't qualify as a nature
        > >miracle.

        [Bob's response]

        > I don't recall either-- but maybe it depends on how dead is dead.
        That is,
        > what if someone is comatose and regarded as dead, but not dead by
        modern
        > clinical standards? Then if the person is "raised," it is a kind of
        healing
        > miracle rather than a nature miracle. You are not helped by the
        fact
        that
        > Sanders seems not to address "raising the dead" in his chapter on
        miracles,
        > instead dealing with this category in his Epilogue: the
        Resurrection
        (esp.
        > p. 278). But also I think you are trying to force Sanders to do
        something
        > that he really doesn't want to do, despite using the distinction
        between
        > healings, exorcisms, and "natural" miracles (p. 143). That is, this
        latter
        > distinction is primarily a modern one (Cicero notwithstanding),
        uncommon in
        > the first century (e.g., p. 141), and Sanders states that his
        purpose is to
        > understand miracles from the ancient perspective, when ideas on
        what
        was
        > "natural" and what wasn't were different from ours.

        If this was Sanders' sole purpose, then I would have thought that he
        would have set up his chapter differently--or at least would have
        sought to address a central ideological issue that he himself raises
        in an ideological way. But having set up the chapter the way he does,
        he then leave his readers with real loose ends. I was reading through
        some of the previous Crosstalk posts on miracles in the archives, and
        I noted Bob Miller (I think it was he) saying he was a Biblical
        scholar (read historian?) rather than a theologian. Sanders makes a
        similar distinction--and I do it all the time with my students. But I
        try not to raise the kinds of ideological issues that Sanders does in
        his chapter on miracles. And when I read modern historians of ancient
        Greece and Rome, I don't see them being so ultra careful to dance
        around reports of the supernatural in the way Sanders does when he
        talks about the historical disciples of Jesus and the historical
        Jesus. Like Miller and unlike Sanders, as historians in their
        historical reconstructions they simply don't credit reports of
        supernatual things like raisings from the dead.


        >
        > I note that you use the category of "raising from the dead" rather
        than
        > "resurrection". We tend to put "Resurrection" in a special box
        marked
        > "Christian belief" and then use some other term for any similar
        occurrence
        > (nowadays "near death experiences" are the stuff of popular books,
        and the
        > objective difference between these and "resurrection" is sometimes
        > unclear). But to the first century mind, being raised from the dead
        was, if
        > not an everyday experience, at least a part of Jewish tradition
        (Hebrews
        > 11:35; Sanders p. 276n.6 with references on p. 311 to I Kings
        17:8-14; II
        > Kings 4:18-36; Mark 5:21-43&//; Luke 7:11-17; Acts 9:36-43; John
        11:5-44;
        > Philostratus, Life of Appolonius of Tyrana 4:45; Pliny, Natural
        History
        > 26:13; Apuleius, Florida 19 ). I think I read somewhere that
        ancient
        Jewish
        > tradition held that the spirit lurked around the body for three
        days, so
        > that it is significant that both in the case of Lazarus and the
        case
        of
        > Jesus, our sources attempt to make the case that they were "dead"
        for more
        > than 3 days, so that your category of "raising from the dead" may
        need to
        > be subdivided. But basically the problem as described by Sanders on
        p. 278
        > is that both Paul and Luke, when dealing with the Resurrection of
        Jesus,
        > was "an experience that does not fit a known category."

        The categorical approach may be appropriate to Paul and Luke, but I
        don't yet see that it is to Mt. Mt uses the same Greek work (egeiro)
        in 11:5 of Jesus' raisings as he later does of Jesus' own
        resurrection in chapter 28, and at first blush I see no attempt to
        distinguish between Jesus' raisings and Jesus' own resurrection.

        Of course, your mention of Luke *does* raise an even more serious
        historical topic for those who believe in a Q document, since there
        is a parallel to Mt 11:5 in Luke. I wonder how the Q crowd deal with
        it?

        > I'd challenge your class with the question: from the first century
        > perspective, would "raising the dead" be considered a form of
        healing or
        > exorcism, or something more like what we now regard as the "nature"
        > miracles? Or is this distinction anachronistic?

        Surely anachronistic, no?

        >Was the resurrection of
        > Jesus regarded as sui generis, or in the same category as the
        examples
        > cited in Sanders' footnote?

        As I said above, this seems to depend on what document one is
        reading. At first glance Mt appears to present Jesus' resurrection in
        just the same terms (literally) as Jesus' own self-proclaimed raisings
        of others, whereas Lk presents it, I guess--given Luke 24 and Acts 1--
        differently. For I take it that the resurrection connected with the
        widow of Nain and Peter's and Paul's raisings are presented as
        categorically different from Jesus' resurrection. If there was a Q,
        Mt and Lk appear to be dealing with this topic in their source in
        different ways.

        Tom

        ___
        Thomas A. Kopecek
        Professor of Religion
        Central College, Pella, IA 50219
        kopecekt@central
      • Thomas A. Kopecek
        ... in ... I ... the ... than ... offered ... scholarship ... *** Stephen Carlson and I had a conversation on Synoptic-L that developed from another
        Message 3 of 23 , Jan 9, 2001
          --- In crosstalk2@egroups.com, Bob Schacht <r_schacht@y...> wrote:

          > >BTW: Stephen Carlson and I had a very interesting exchange on
          > >Synoptic-L about Stephen's belief that the portrait of Peter in Mt
          > >is, in important respects, more negative than the portrait of Peter
          in
          > >Mk. Stephen was his usual lucid and careful self, but after awhile
          I
          > >simply faded on him, not having the time necessary to do all the
          > >required research and not being particularly expert in NT criticism
          > >to begin with. Unfortunately, no one else on Synoptic-L joined in
          the
          > >fray, and I was very much wanting to have someone who knows more
          than
          > >I do come in and seek to adjudicate between my defense of what I
          > >consider to be the standard position in scholarship and Stephen's
          > >challenge to it.
          > >
          > >Since Stephen originally offered his view a few years ago on
          > >Crosstalk (and it was not taken up), would any be interested in
          > >Stephen or me putting together a synopsis of the arguments we
          offered
          > >on either side (mine were very tentative indeed, since NT
          scholarship
          > >isn't my professional field) and then joining in?
          >
          > Yes! Please do!
          >
          > Bob

          ***

          Stephen Carlson and I had a conversation on Synoptic-L that developed
          from
          another conversation. The first concerned the extent to which Peter
          can
          justifiably be considered a "source" for the Gospel of Mark. In that
          conversation I raised the topic of the negative portrait of Peter in
          Mark,
          which Stephen claimed, in turn, "is oversold." The conversation went
          from there.

          I hope others join in this, for initially I thought I could stay with
          Stephen, but
          For various reasons, including his superior abilities in NT
          scholarship, I could
          not. So here comes a slighted edited version of what transpired.

          Tom

          ***
          I. FIRST EXCHANGE:

          {Tom]
          >>I was struck, however, by your comment that "Mark's negative
          portrayal is
          >>oversold (in many respects it is less negative than Matthew's)."
          Since I'm
          >>less dedicated to keeping up with the flood of material on NT
          scholarship
          >>than I'm dedicated to trying to follow the Patristic scholarship in
          which
          >>I'm interested. . . , I'm curious about why
          >>you (and others on the list as well, if there are others) think
          Matthew's
          >>portrayal of Peter is more "negative" than Matthew's.

          [Stephen]
          > I outlined this provocative position of mine in a post I made to
          > Crosstalk on July 18, 1997 but did not receive any response,
          > favorable or critical. Maybe this time will be different. Here
          > is a revised version:

          > Although many would wonder how can a gospel that has Peter called
          > the rock (Mt16:18) and Peter walking on water (Mt14:28) be more
          > negative than Mark, I think a comparison of the two Gospels bears
          > it out. In these two examples in Matthew, Peter's success is
          > quickly followed by failure. Peter walks on water and sink. Peter
          > is called the "Rock" and then the stumbling block (Mt16:23 SKANDALON
          > *not in Mk* cf. 13:41). The literary effect is to highlight Peter's
          > failure (in Mt compared to Mk).

          [Tom]
          Let me begin by again reminding Synoptic-L readers that I make no
          claim to
          be a NT scholar. The NT is simply a presupposition for the work I do,
          such
          as it is these days, in the Fathers. But with that disclaimer, let me
          plunge
          into the deep waters nonetheless.

          I think the real literary effect of the sinking and skandalon
          is to try to explain the data that occur in Mark. But such an
          interpretation
          depends on my view of the rest of your evidence. So to it.

          [Stephen]
          > In general, this pattern is consistent between the gospels. Matthew
          > lacks Mark's vignette of Peter finding Jesus praying (Mk1:36ff).
          > Matthew lacks Mark's passage in which Peter with James and John are
          > allowed to see the healing of Jairus daughter (Mk5:37).

          [Tom]
          Mk 5:37 comes between (1) 4:34-41, especially 40-41 (where Jesus says
          to his
          disciples, "Have you still no faith," and they respond, "Who is this .
          . .?")
          and 6:1-6a, especially 6a (where Jesus is amazed by the lack of faith
          of
          his kin) and (2) the story of the outsider woman with the hemorrhages
          in 5:34
          who-- unlike the insider three disciples Peter, James, and John at the
          raising of
          Jairus' daughter (along with the rest of the 12 to whom the secret of
          the
          Kingdom of God had been revealed)--explicitly is portrayed as having
          faith.
          Thus, Mk 5:37, in context, is negative in its portrayal of Peter,
          James, and
          John.

          I think Mt omits it precisely because the reference to the three
          disciples
          in Mark is negative. Finally, the presence in Mark of Peter, James,
          and John
          at the raising of Jairus' daughter is a foreshadowing of the
          transfiguration
          scene in Mark 9:2-13, which is very negative toward the inner core of
          the
          Three, just as 9:14-29 and 48-41 are negative toward the rest of the
          disciples. Matthew obviously softens Mk's transfiguration story's
          negative
          portrait of the three.

          [Stephen]
          > In fact, Mark
          ÿ at 11:21 (withered fig tree),

          [Tom]
          The presence in Mark 11:21 of Peter is, in my opinion, negative, for
          after
          Peter says, "Rabbi, look: the fig tree that you cursed has withered,"
          Jesus
          answers in 11:22, "Have faith in God." Jesus then goes on to talk
          about not
          doubting and having faith in prayer, which Peter, like the rest of the
          12
          mentioned back in 9:27 in a comparable passage, never does in Mark, at
          least
          as far as I can see (while Jesus prays later on, Peter sleeps, for
          instance). This passage in 11:22 also echoes, as I see it, the
          stilling of
          the storm passage, "Have you still no faith?"

          [Stephen]
          >13:3 (private apocalypse),

          [Tom]
          Yes, Peter is present, but the point of chapter 13 is "Keep awake!"
          This
          immediately foreshadows 14:32-34, where Peter, James, and John
          don't--but
          rather fall asleep. Of course Mt would eliminate the reference to
          Peter in
          the parallel to Mark 13, precisely to eliminate some of the negative
          portrayal of Peter in Mk--and thus to speak better of him.

          [Stephen]
          > and 16:7
          > (resurrection to Peter and the disciples) point out Peter by name,
          > but the Matthean parallels lack Peter's name in preference to the
          > disciples. Thus, Mark accords an inner circle status to Peter that
          > is attenuated in Matthew. The last example is important for Peter's
          > credentials as an apostle according to 1 Cor. qualifications of
          > witnessing the risen Christ. Matthew could have added a
          resurrection
          > story to Peter first as hinted by Mk16:7, but chose to recount an
          > appearance to the Eleven instead.

          [Tom, being imprecise]
          I don't see anything in chapter 16 of Mk to be a hint of a
          resurrection
          appearance to Peter, for the women "said notin' to nobody." It is,
          rather, a
          very emphatic statement that Jesus' message that he was "leading" the
          11,
          especially Peter, to Galilee (14:26ff)--as reported by the young man
          at the
          tomb (16:7)--never got to Peter and the rest. Mt omits the reference
          to
          Peter precisely to speak more positively of Peter and the Eleven than
          Mark,
          I think.

          [Stephen]
          > In one case, however, the situation (one gospel has "Peter," the
          other
          > "disciples") is reversed: at Mt15:15 Peter does not understand the
          parable
          > about what defiles, but in Mk7:17 the disciples as a whole, without
          naming
          > Peter, do not. In a special-Matthew parable (or Matthean redaction
          of
          > Q), Peter is told to forgive 77 times (18:21), followed by the
          parable of
          > the unmerciful servant. There are also curiously pro-Judaic
          teachings
          > delivered to Peter in Mt but not in Mk: 17:24f. Peter and the Temple
          > Tax, after Mt19:27, those who follow Jesus sit on 12 thrones.

          [Tom]
          The more positive portrayal of Peter in Mt agrees with with the Temple
          Tax
          story in 17:24ff and the eschatological judgment verse in 19:28, in my
          opinion.

          I know I haven't dealt with all of your passages, Stephen, but I'm no
          NT
          scholar. I'd have to give the others further thought.

          [Stephen]
          ÿ I hope this helped.

          [Tom]
          Not yet. Keep going at me, and maybe you'll be able to convince me.
          I've
          certainly got an open mind about the matter.

          II. SECOND EXCHANGE

          [Stephen]
          Thank you very much for your response. In this message, it is
          important to keep in mind that my thesis is that Mark's portrayal
          of Peter is in many respects less negative than Matthew. That
          is not to say that Mark is never negative about Peter, only that
          I think on balance that views of Mark's negativity toward Peter
          are overexaggerated. I am using Matthew, which few think is negative
          toward Peter, as a basis for comparison: if Mark is indeed less
          negative than Matthew over Peter, then Mark's remaining negativity
          to Peter should not be considered out of place in the first century,
          before the tendency toward hagiography became more pronounced.

          [Tom]
          >I think the real literary effect of the sinking and skandalon
          >is to try to explain the data that occur in Mark. But such an
          interpretation
          >depends on my view of the rest of Stephen's evidence. So to it.

          [Stephen]
          If I wanted to lessen the negativity of Peter in this passage, I
          would omit Jesus' calling Peter "Satan." Matthew did not do that.
          Rather, Matthew called Peter a stumbling block, a reproach lacking
          in Mark. Perhaps this is explaining Mark, or perhaps it is adding
          insult to injury.

          [Tom]
          >Mk 5:37 comes (1) between 4:34-41, especially 40-41 (where Jesus says
          to his
          >disciples, "Have you still no faith," and they respond, "Who is this
          . . .
          >?") and 6:1-6a, especially 6a (where Jesus is amazed by the lack of
          faith of
          >his kin) and (2) it is the outsider woman with the hemorrhages in
          5:34 who--
          >unlike the insider three disciples Peter, James, and John at the
          raising of
          >Jairus' daughter (along with the rest of the 12 to whom the secret of
          the
          >Kingdom of God had been revealed)--explicitly is portrayed as having
          faith.
          >Thus, Mk 5:37, in context, is negative in its portrayal of Peter,
          James, and
          >John.

          [Stephen]
          Mark 4:34-41 is not a passage that singles out Peter in any way. It
          is more negative toward the disciples generally than Matthew, but I
          never denied that. Indeed, both are somewhat are negative (cf. Matt
          8:26 "Why are you afraid, you of little faith?"). Thus, Mark 4:34-41
          is not an example of Peter specifically being portrayed more
          negatively.
          Yes, the woman with the hemorrhages is explicitly portrayed as having
          faith in Mark 5:34, but also in Matt 9:22. In both gospels, the
          disciples come out less favorably by comparison than the woman.
          Still,
          Peter is not mentioned by name until afterwards at Mark 5:37 where
          Jesus
          "allowed no one to follow him except Peter, James, and John." The
          Matthean
          parallel at 9:19 merely says the "disciples" before (not after as in
          Mark) Jesus's praising of the woman. Thus, whatever force may be
          given
          to the comparison of the woman's faith and the disciples, Matthew
          comes
          out a bit more negative in that the disciple were mentioned
          immediately
          before the praise of the woman's faith, whereas the disciple were last
          mentioned 26 verses earlier -- quite a removal from the context.
          The specific naming of Peter, James, and John after the woman's
          healing
          in this sandwiched story play no other role than to be named as a
          group
          of people selected by Jesus. Thus, I don't how their mentioning is in
          any way negative.

          [Tom]
          >I think Mt omits it precisely because the reference to the three
          disciples
          >in Mark is negative. Finally, the presence in Mark of Peter, James,
          and John
          >at the raising of Jairus' daughter is a foreshadowing of the
          transfiguration
          >scene in Mark 9:2-13, which is very negative toward the inner core of
          the
          >Three, just as 9:14-29 and 48-41 are negative toward the rest of the
          >disciples. Matthew obviously softens Mk's transfiguration story's
          negative
          >portrait of the three.

          [Stephen]
          Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't see what is "very negative"
          in
          the Transfiguration and how Matthew "obviously softens" the "negative
          portrait" of Peter. Both Matthew and Mark state that Peter was afraid
          (Mark 9:6, Matt 17:6) -- I don't think that would be viewed negatively
          under the circumstances.

          [Tom]
          >The presence in Mark 11:21 of Peter is, in my opinion, negative, for
          after
          >Peter says, "Rabbi, look: the fig tree that you cursed has withered,"
          Jesus
          >answers in 11:22, "Have faith in God." Jesus then goes on to talk
          about not
          >doubting and having faith in prayer, which Peter, like the rest of
          the 12
          >mentioned back in 9:27 in a comparable passage, never does in Mark,
          at least
          >as far as I can see (while Jesus prays later on, Peter sleeps, for
          >instance). This passage in 11:22 also echoes, as I see it, the
          stilling of
          >the storm passage, "Have you still no faith?"

          [Stephen]
          At Mark 11:21, Peter remember about the fig tree and pointed it out to
          Jesus -- and Jesus answer *them* (KAI APOKRIQEIS hO IHSOUS LEGEI
          *AUTOIS*),
          referring to the disciples (cf. Mark 11:14). However one might view
          Jesus's answer as a rebuke (I don't; I see it as instruction), it is
          done to the disciples generally not to Peter specifically. Matthew,
          on the other hand, has the disciples, not Peter specifically, ask a
          question, which Jesus answered. Thus, I see Mark's mention of Peter
          here as taking a leadership role that is lacking in Matthew.

          [Tom]
          > . . . the point of chapter 13 of Mark is "Keep awake!" This
          >immediately foreshadows 14:32-34, where Peter, James, and John
          don't--but
          >rather fall asleep. Of course Mt would eliminate the reference to
          Peter in
          >the parallel to Mark 13, precisely to eliminate some of the negative
          >portrayal of Peter in Mk--and thus to speak better of him.

          [Stephen]
          At Mark 13:3, Jesus predicts the Temple's destruction to Peter, James,
          John, Andrew. In the Matthean parallel (24:3) it is to the disciples
          generally. If Matthew wanted to eliminate the negative protrayal of
          Peter falling asleep, would it be more effective to eliminate Matt
          26:40 where that event occurs or to water down Peter's insider status
          37 verses earlier? I think the purpose you have proposed for Matthew
          is just subtle to be realistic.

          [Tom, being imprecise J]
          >I don't see anything in chapter 16 of Mk to be a hint of a
          resurrection
          >appearance to Peter, for the women "said notin' to nobody." It is,
          rather, a
          >very emphatic statement that Jesus' message that he was "leading" the
          11,
          >especially Peter, to Galilee (14:26ff)--as reported by the young man
          at the
          >tomb (16:7)--never got to Peter and the rest. Mt omits the reference
          to
          >Peter precisely to speak more positively of Peter and the Eleven than
          Mark,
          >I think.

          [Stephen]
          What about: "there you will see him, just as he told" in 16:7? That
          has to be a hint of a resurrection appearance. At any rate, the
          women's silence is Markan irony, because everybody knows (and knew
          in Mark's audience) that Jesus did indeed appear to Peter and the
          disciples. Thus, the women's failure of silence does not imply
          that Peter and the disciples never got the word and missed out on
          Jesus's resurrection appearance. Matthew improves the matter by
          explicitly reciting a resurrection appear, but I can't see Matthew's
          omission of "Peter" in favor of the disciples as a group to be
          more positive to Peter specifically than Mark.

          [Tom]
          >The more positive portrayal of Peter in Mt agrees with the Temple Tax
          >story in 17:24ff and the eschatological judgment verse in 19:28, in
          my
          >opinion.

          [Stephen]
          In Matt 17:24-27, Peter's misunderstanding of Jesus's obligation to
          pay
          the tax is corrected by a miracle. Positive or negative? Beat me.
          The
          judgment verse in 19:28 is more positive of the 12 disciples, but, as
          to
          Peter specifically, nope.

          III. THIRD EXCHANGE

          "Stephen C. Carlson" <scarlson@...> wrote:
          > In this message, it is
          > important to keep in mind that my thesis is that Mark's portrayal
          > of Peter is in many respects less negative than Matthew. That
          > is not to say that Mark is never negative about Peter, only that
          > I think on balance that views of Mark's negativity toward Peter
          > are overexaggerated. I am using Matthew, which few think is
          negative
          > toward Peter, as a basis for comparison: if Mark is indeed less
          > negative than Matthew over Peter, then Mark's remaining negativity
          > to Peter should not be considered out of place in the first century,
          ÿ before the tendency toward hagiography became more pronounced.

          [Tom]
          Thank you, Stephen, for your careful statement of what you are trying
          to
          accomplish. As for the rest of your present post, I'm beginning better
          to
          understand the overall drift of your argument and find it ingenious.
          While
          not yet convinced by your case, you've certainly gotten me to look at
          the
          passages in new ways.

          On the other hand, I feel myself, like Peter, beginning to sink and
          wanting
          to cry out, unlike Peter, Synoptic-Lers, save me. I've been a lurker
          on this
          list, since professionally I read the gospels through the eyes of the
          Fathers, and almost to a man they didn't see much negativity regarding
          the
          Eleven in the Synoptics at all. So the debate in which I'm now engaged
          is
          not my cup of tea--and a tempest in a teapot to boot.

          But, of course, I'm responsible for trying to tease your position out
          of
          you, Stephen. I just wish that some people more expert than I am in Mk
          and
          Mt would join the fray. Please!!! (Or is this not the kind of issue
          that
          Synoptic-Lers consider to be a central focus of the list?)

          I'll try to keep up my courage a little bit longer.

          [Stephen]
          > If I wanted to lessen the negativity of Peter in this passage, I
          > would omit Jesus' calling Peter "Satan." Matthew did not do that.
          > Rather, Matthew called Peter a stumbling block, a reproach lacking
          > in Mark. Perhaps this is explaining Mark, or perhaps it is adding
          > insult to injury.

          [Tom}
          I agree with you that Peter's walking on the water and Peter's
          confession
          are intimately related. But for the time being I'll stick with viewing
          Mt's
          expansions as attempts to explain Mark. After all the stumbling block
          statement comes after Mt's addition: "God forbid it, Lord. This must
          never
          happen to you." That appears to me to soften Mark's portrait of Peter
          considerably--and intentionally.

          [Stephen]
          > Mark 4:34-41 is not a passage that singles out Peter in any way. It
          > is more negative toward the disciples generally than Matthew, but I
          > never denied that. Indeed, both are somewhat are negative (cf. Matt
          > 8:26 "Why are you afraid, you of little faith?"). Thus, Mark
          4:34-41
          > is not an example of Peter specifically being portrayed more
          negatively.

          [Tom]
          No, of course not, but I don't think, as you apparently do, that Peter
          can
          be so sharply distinguished from the rest of the disciples, and
          especially
          not James and John.

          [Stephen]
          > Yes, the woman with the hemorrhages is explicitly portrayed as
          having
          > faith in Mark 5:34, but also in Matt 9:22. [snip]
          > The specific naming of Peter, James, and John after the woman's
          healing
          > in this sandwiched story play no other role than to be named as a
          group
          > of people selected by Jesus. Thus, I don't how their mentioning is
          in
          >any way negative.

          [Tom]
          I don't agree, obviously, for I (as I've said) see the mentioning
          together
          of Peter, James, and John in 5:37 as an anticipation or foreshadowing
          of the
          Transfiguration, which I continue to view as more negative in its
          portrait
          of Peter in Mk than in Mt--on which, see below.

          [Stephen]
          > Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't see what is "very negative"
          in
          > the Transfiguration and how Matthew "obviously softens" the
          "negative
          > portrait" of Peter. Both Matthew and Mark state that Peter was
          afraid
          > (Mark 9:6, Matt 17:6) -- I don't think that would be viewed
          negatively
          > under the circumstances.

          The issue is the order of the sayings, in my opinion, and some of the
          particulars of the sayings. Mk has in 9:6 the words, "For Peter did
          not know
          what to say." That isn't in Mt, and Mt adds Peter's words to Jesus in
          Mt
          17:4 "if you wish." These points seem to me to support the traditional
          case
          against your revisionist case. Furthermore, the terror of the Three is
          less
          tightly connected in Mt with Peter, since it is displaced from Mt
          17:4 to
          Mt 17:6 (following Mt's verses). This takes the negative focus off of
          Peter
          which is present in Mark 9:6.

          [Stephen]
          > At Mark 11:21, Peter remember about the fig tree and pointed it out
          to
          > Jesus -- and Jesus answer *them* (KAI APOKRIQEIS hO IHSOUS LEGEI
          *AUTOIS*),
          > referring to the disciples (cf. Mark 11:14). However one might view
          > Jesus's answer as a rebuke (I don't; I see it as instruction), it is
          > done to the disciples generally not to Peter specifically. Matthew,
          > on the other hand, has the disciples, not Peter specifically, ask a
          > question, which Jesus answered. Thus, I see Mark's mention of Peter
          >here as taking a leadership role that is lacking in Matthew.

          [Tom]
          It is precisely Mk's attribution of a leadership role to Peter that
          highlights Peter's lack of faith, just his leadership role was
          highlighted
          when *he* spoke in the Transfiguration account in Mk and we were told
          by Mk
          that he didn't have a clue about what was going on: that is, he is the
          leader of those to whom Jesus earlier said (and continues to say
          throughout
          the gospel), "Have you no faith?"--which in Matthew is changed, of
          course,
          to "men of little faith." At least Peter got out of the boat and tried
          to
          employ that little faith before he began to sink and needed to call
          upon the
          name of the Lord, as it were.

          [Stephen]
          > At Mark 13:3, Jesus predicts the Temple's destruction to Peter,
          James,
          > John, Andrew. In the Matthean parallel (24:3) it is to the
          disciples
          > generally. If Matthew wanted to eliminate the negative protrayal of
          > Peter falling asleep, would it be more effective to eliminate Matt
          > 26:40 where that event occurs or to water down Peter's insider
          status
          > 37 verses earlier? I think the purpose you have proposed for
          Matthew
          >is just subtle to be realistic.

          [Tom]
          Not too subtle in my opinion. The end of Mark 13 and the falling
          asleep in
          Mk 14 are very close together. Mt 24:42 and Mt 26:40 are nicely
          separated,
          and Peter's falling asleep in Mt is immediately qualified by
          juxtaposing it
          to the person with the "real" lack of faith, Judas, whose suicide is
          added
          in Mt 27 right after Peter's falling asleep and denial in Mt 26. Peter
          seems
          to me to be coming off better in Mt than in Mk--rather consistently.

          [Tom]
          >>I don't see anything in chapter 16 of Mk to be a hint of a
          resurrection
          >>appearance to Peter, for the women "said notin' to nobody." It is,
          rather, a
          >>very emphatic statement that Jesus' message that he was "leading"
          the 11,
          >>especially Peter, to Galilee (14:26ff)--as reported by the young man
          at the
          >>tomb (16:7)--never got to Peter and the rest. Mt omits the reference
          to
          >>Peter precisely to speak more positively of Peter and the Eleven
          than Mark,
          >>I think.

          [Stephen]
          > What about: "there you will see him, just as he told" in 16:7? That
          > has to be a hint of a resurrection appearance. At any rate, the
          > women's silence is Markan irony, because everybody knows (and knew
          > in Mark's audience) that Jesus did indeed appear to Peter and the
          > disciples. Thus, the women's failure of silence does not imply
          > that Peter and the disciples never got the word and missed out on
          > Jesus's resurrection appearance. Matthew improves the matter by
          > explicitly reciting a resurrection appear, but I can't see Matthew's
          > omission of "Peter" in favor of the disciples as a group to be
          > more positive to Peter specifically than Mark.

          [Tom]
          I wasn't making myself clear. What I meant to say was that I see no
          hint in
          Mk of Peter ever going *to Galilee* to experience a resurrection
          appearance:
          that's where Jesus said he was leading the disciples, especially
          Peter,
          according to Mk 14:28 and 16:7. Did "everybody know" that Jesus "did
          indeed
          appear to Peter and the disciples" *there*? On this point I'm, of
          course,
          following a position laid out years ago by Norman Perrin, though I'm
          not as
          sure as he seemed to be about the significance of Galilee in the
          scheme of
          Markan things.

          [Stephen]
          > In Matt 17:24-27, Peter's misunderstanding of Jesus's obligation to
          pay
          > the tax is corrected by a miracle. Positive or negative? Beat me.
          The
          > judgment verse in 19:28 is more positive of the 12 disciples, but,
          as to
          >Peter specifically, nope.

          [Tom]
          Your logic is losing me, Stephen. If a passage is in Mt but not Mk,
          and the
          passage is positive toward all
        • Thomas A. Kopecek
          I post to Crosstalk using the web-based reply function on eGroups. Unfortunately I ve always had some parts of my posts cut off at the end--for reasons I don t
          Message 4 of 23 , Jan 9, 2001
            I post to Crosstalk using the web-based reply function on eGroups.
            Unfortunately I've always had some parts of my posts cut off at the
            end--for reasons I don't understand.

            At Bob Schacht's request I'll re-post the last couple of paragraphs
            and hope they too are not cut off :-).

            ***

            [Stephen]
            > In Matt 17:24-27, Peter's misunderstanding of Jesus's obligation to
            pay
            > the tax is corrected by a miracle. Positive or negative? Beat me.

            The
            > judgment verse in 19:28 is more positive of the 12 disciples, but,
            as to
            >Peter specifically, nope.

            [Tom]
            Your logic is losing me, Stephen. If a passage is in Mt but not Mk,
            and the
            passage is positive toward all the 12, how can the net effect of its
            presence in Mt and not Mk not also be more positive toward the man
            always
            listed as the first of the disciples? Am I being dense?


            Tom

            ___
            Thomas A. Kopecek
            Professor of Religion
            Central College, Pella, IA 50219
            kopecekt@...
          • Bob Schacht
            ... Many thanks! First, a question: What was the date of these exchanges? Perhaps simply the month and year would suffice. Second, Stephen, assuming that this
            Message 5 of 23 , Jan 9, 2001
              At 05:30 PM 1/9/01 +0000, Thomas A. Kopecek wrote:
              >***
              >
              >Stephen Carlson and I had a conversation on Synoptic-L that developed
              >from another conversation. The first concerned the extent to which Peter
              >can justifiably be considered a "source" for the Gospel of Mark. In that
              >conversation I raised the topic of the negative portrait of Peter in
              >Mark, which Stephen claimed, in turn, "is oversold." The conversation went
              >from there.
              >
              >I hope others join in this, for initially I thought I could stay with
              >Stephen, but For various reasons, including his superior abilities in NT
              >scholarship, I could not. So here comes a slighted edited version of what
              >transpired.
              >
              >Tom

              Many thanks!
              First, a question: What was the date of these exchanges? Perhaps simply the
              month and year would suffice.

              Second, Stephen, assuming that this exchange occurred before the Ted Weeden
              posts on GMark (mainly posted during May 2000 to XTalk), have his posts
              changed any of your views in what follows?
              To summarize Weeden's argument, I'll quote this epitome from his post dated
              5/25/2000:

              >Many of you know from my _Mark-Traditions in Conflict_ (1971,1979) that I
              >am convinced that Mark is dramatizing his own vendetta against opponents
              >in his community who advocate a christology radically different from
              >Mark’s own suffering-servant christology.
              >
              >Mark’s opponents claim their view on christology is grounded in the
              >tradition passed down by Peter and the Twelve. Thus Peter and the Twelve
              >are the opponents’ authorities. Since Mark does not possess the apostolic
              >stature that Peter and the Twelve do, the only way that he can "out trump"
              >his opponents is to compose a drama in which (1) Jesus, the most revered
              >and exalted authority of all, is presented as advocating Mark’s
              >christology and (2) Peter and the Twelve are portrayed as advocating the
              >christology of Mark’s opponents. Thus in the course of the narrative, Mark
              >presents the disciples, dramatic surrogates for Mark’s opponents, as
              >dense, non-comprehending "insiders" who, when they finally "get" the true
              >christological view proclaimed by Jesus at Caesarea Philippi (8:31) and
              >thereafter (9:31; 10:33f), oppose Jesus’ christology and finally betray,
              >forsake and deny him.


              I have a few quick preliminary questions below:


              >***
              >I. FIRST EXCHANGE:
              >
              >{Tom]
              > >>I was struck, however, by your comment that "Mark's negative
              >portrayal is
              > >>oversold (in many respects it is less negative than Matthew's)."
              >Since I'm
              > >>less dedicated to keeping up with the flood of material on NT
              >scholarship
              > >>than I'm dedicated to trying to follow the Patristic scholarship in
              >which
              > >>I'm interested. . . , I'm curious about why
              > >>you (and others on the list as well, if there are others) think
              >Matthew's
              > >>portrayal of Peter is more "negative" than Matthew's.
              >
              >[Stephen]
              > > I outlined this provocative position of mine in a post I made to
              > > Crosstalk on July 18, 1997 but did not receive any response,
              > > favorable or critical. Maybe this time will be different. Here
              > > is a revised version:

              [snip]

              >[Tom]
              >Mk 5:37 comes between (1) 4:34-41, especially 40-41 (where Jesus says
              >to his disciples, "Have you still no faith," and they respond, "Who is
              >this . . .?") and 6:1-6a, especially 6a (where Jesus is amazed by the lack
              >of faith of his kin) and (2) the story of the outsider woman with the
              >hemorrhages in 5:34 who-- unlike the insider three disciples Peter, James,
              >and John at the raising of Jairus' daughter (along with the rest of the 12
              >to whom the secret of the Kingdom of God had been revealed)--explicitly is
              >portrayed as having faith. Thus, Mk 5:37, in context, is negative in its
              >portrayal of Peter, James, and John.
              >
              >I think Mt omits it precisely because the reference to the three
              >disciples in Mark is negative. Finally, the presence in Mark of Peter,
              >James, and John at the raising of Jairus' daughter is a foreshadowing of
              >the transfiguration scene in Mark 9:2-13, which is very negative toward
              >the inner core of the Three, just as 9:14-29 and 48-41 are negative toward
              >the rest of the disciples. Matthew obviously softens Mk's transfiguration
              >story's negative portrait of the three.
              >
              >[Stephen]
              > > In fact, Mark
              >ÿ at 11:21 (withered fig tree),

              Tom or Stephen,
              Does this last comment of Stephen's need to be restored? Or are you only
              citing here Stephen's introduction of Mark 11:21 in evidence, and the "ÿ"
              is simply an extraneous character?

              >[Tom]
              >The presence in Mark 11:21 of Peter is, in my opinion, negative, for
              >after Peter says, "Rabbi, look: the fig tree that you cursed has
              >withered," Jesus answers in 11:22, "Have faith in God." Jesus then goes on
              >to talk about not doubting and having faith in prayer, which Peter, like
              >the rest of the 12 mentioned back in 9:27 in a comparable passage, never
              >does in Mark, at least as far as I can see (while Jesus prays later on,
              >Peter sleeps, for instance). This passage in 11:22 also echoes, as I see
              >it, the stilling of the storm passage, "Have you still no faith?"
              >
              >[Stephen]
              > >13:3 (private apocalypse),
              >
              >[Tom]
              >Yes, Peter is present, but the point of chapter 13 is "Keep awake!"...

              [snip]

              >[Tom]
              >...I know I haven't dealt with all of your passages, Stephen, but I'm no
              >NT scholar. I'd have to give the others further thought.
              >
              >[Stephen]
              >ÿ I hope this helped.

              Once again, is there text that needs to be restored here, or is the pesky
              "ÿ" simply extraneous?

              >II. SECOND EXCHANGE
              >
              >[Stephen]
              >Thank you very much for your response. In this message, it is
              >important to keep in mind that my thesis is that Mark's portrayal
              >of Peter is in many respects less negative than Matthew. That
              >is not to say that Mark is never negative about Peter, only that
              >I think on balance that views of Mark's negativity toward Peter
              >are overexaggerated. I am using Matthew, which few think is negative
              >toward Peter, as a basis for comparison: if Mark is indeed less
              >negative than Matthew over Peter, then Mark's remaining negativity
              >to Peter should not be considered out of place in the first century,
              >before the tendency toward hagiography became more pronounced.

              Stephen, do you have any explanation for this Matthean negativity towards
              Peter? In light of Weeden's analysis of Mark's anti-petrine Christology, do
              you think that, like Mark, Matthew has a bone to pick with Peter's
              Christology? If so, do you think it is the same bone, or a different one?

              [Remainder of Second Exchange snipped]

              >III. THIRD EXCHANGE
              >
              >"Stephen C. Carlson" <scarlson@...> wrote:
              > > In this message, it is
              > > important to keep in mind that my thesis is that Mark's portrayal
              > > of Peter is in many respects less negative than Matthew. That
              > > is not to say that Mark is never negative about Peter, only that
              > > I think on balance that views of Mark's negativity toward Peter
              > > are overexaggerated. I am using Matthew, which few think is
              >negative
              > > toward Peter, as a basis for comparison: if Mark is indeed less
              > > negative than Matthew over Peter, then Mark's remaining negativity
              > > to Peter should not be considered out of place in the first century,
              >ÿ before the tendency toward hagiography became more pronounced.
              >
              >[Tom]
              >... I read the gospels through the eyes of the Fathers, and almost to a
              >man they didn't see much negativity regarding the Eleven in the Synoptics
              >at all.

              Can the same be said about GMark (contra Weeden)?

              [Much snipped]


              >[Stephen]
              > > In Matt 17:24-27, Peter's misunderstanding of Jesus's obligation to
              >pay
              > > the tax is corrected by a miracle. Positive or negative? Beat me.
              >The
              > > judgment verse in 19:28 is more positive of the 12 disciples, but,
              >as to
              > >Peter specifically, nope.
              >
              >[Tom]
              >Your logic is losing me, Stephen. If a passage is in Mt but not Mk,
              >and the passage is positive toward all

              Tom,
              Your summary seems to be cut off at this point; would you please supply the
              remainder?

              Anyway, many thanks for this dialogue. Let's see what we can do to sort
              this out!

              Thanks,
              Bob


              Robert M. Schacht, Ph.D.
              Northern Arizona University
              Flagstaff, AZ


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Thomas A. Kopecek
              ... simply the ... The exchange occurred just a few days ago in January. ... only ... the ÿ ... The strange y is actually a in what I tried to send, so
              Message 6 of 23 , Jan 10, 2001
                --- In crosstalk2@egroups.com, Bob Schacht <r_schacht@y...> wrote:

                > Many thanks!
                > First, a question: What was the date of these exchanges? Perhaps
                simply the
                > month and year would suffice.

                The exchange occurred just a few days ago in January.


                > > > In fact, Mark
                > >ÿ at 11:21 (withered fig tree),
                >
                > Tom or Stephen,
                > Does this last comment of Stephen's need to be restored? Or are you
                only
                > citing here Stephen's introduction of Mark 11:21 in evidence, and
                the "ÿ"
                > is simply an extraneous character?

                The strange "y" is actually a > in what I tried to send, so it isn't
                important. I was just citing the beginning of Stephen's sentence,
                which I think was reproduced totally earlier.

                > >[Tom]
                > >Your logic is losing me, Stephen. If a passage is in Mt but not Mk,
                > >and the passage is positive toward all
                >
                > Tom,
                > Your summary seems to be cut off at this point; would you please
                supply the
                > remainder?
                >
                > Anyway, many thanks for this dialogue. Let's see what we can do to
                sort
                > this out!

                I tried to supply the remainder in a Pt 2 post. Did it come through on
                others' machines? All but my email address is visible on the archives
                as I have access to them.

                I hope this helps clear the underbrush.

                And I do want to thank Mark for his interesting methodological
                comment: he is, indeed, correct about one thing. That is, when I was
                taught as an undergraduate, seminary student, and graduate student, I
                don't think I ever heard the expression 'narrative criticism'. Then I
                went on to other things, and it may well be that I'm about 45 years
                behind the thrust of NT scholarship :-).

                Tom

                ___
                Thomas A. Kopecek
                Professor of Religion
                Central College, Pella, IA 50219
                kopecekt@...

                This sentence is being typed just to test something about the way the
                eGroup web-based system cuts things off
              • Thomas A. Kopecek
                ... to a ... Synoptics ... What I meant by my comment, Bob, is that as a person who works generally with ancient Greek Catholic orthodox texts I don t tend to
                Message 7 of 23 , Jan 10, 2001
                  --- In crosstalk2@egroups.com, Bob Schacht <r_schacht@y...> wrote:

                  > >[Tom]
                  > >... I read the gospels through the eyes of the Fathers, and almost
                  to a
                  > >man they didn't see much negativity regarding the Eleven in the
                  Synoptics
                  > >at all.
                  >
                  > Can the same be said about GMark (contra Weeden)?

                  What I meant by my comment, Bob, is that as a person who works
                  generally with ancient Greek Catholic orthodox texts I don't tend to
                  raise issues about the New Testament that the Fathers who wrote those
                  later orthodox texts didn't raise themselves. In other words, I "pull
                  a Sanders" :-). When I was speaking about the Fathers, I was not at
                  all pronouncing on my own belief regarding Mark's portrait of Peter
                  and the rest of the Eleven. Indeed, the entire thrust of my responses
                  to Stephen Carlson was to contend that Mk's portrait is uniformly
                  negative and that Mt seeks to make it more positive. This is what I
                  always thought was the "standard" scholarly position, and Mark
                  Goodacre's recent post appears to confirm that judgment.

                  When it comes to Ted's specific position on the issue of Christology
                  and GosMark's negative portrait of the disciples, I confess I don't
                  know. I read Weeden's book ages ago, I remember having problems with
                  the explication of--if I brain is not failing me--Mark 13. But i can't
                  recall what those problems were!

                  When Mark Goodacre posted his recent email about the portrait of
                  Peter in Mk and Mt, it reminded me that he once constructed an
                  argument on Crosstalk (maybe around 1996-1998) to the effect that
                  Gospel of Mark is Pauline and that the negativity toward Peter and,
                  indeed, James in the gospel can be explained in that way. I happen to
                  agree with that position. However, Mark sought also to correct what he
                  believed to be my error in seeing I Cor 1-4 as directed against
                  Apollos rather than Peter.

                  I'm consequently glad this whole subject has come up, for I recall
                  digging out and copying an article by Michael Goulder on I Cor 1-4 to
                  which Mark pointed me but then never getting around to reading it.
                  Given the exchange I had on Synoptic-L with Carlson, I hope to make
                  time to do this soon, for I've found Goulder's article in my files on
                  I Cor.

                  Tom

                  ___
                  Thomas A. Kopecek
                  Professor of Religion
                  Central College, Pella, IA
                  kopecekt@central
                • Bob Schacht
                  ... Tom, I m sorry; I m obviously confused. Your original post on this thread on January 7 stated ... I made the false assumption that your synopsis was based
                  Message 8 of 23 , Jan 10, 2001
                    At 03:11 PM 1/10/01 +0000, Thomas A. Kopecek wrote:
                    >--- In crosstalk2@egroups.com, Bob Schacht <r_schacht@y...> wrote:
                    >
                    > > Many thanks!
                    > > First, a question: What was the date of these exchanges? Perhaps
                    >simply the
                    > > month and year would suffice.
                    >
                    >The exchange occurred just a few days ago in January.

                    Tom,
                    I'm sorry; I'm obviously confused. Your original post on this thread on
                    January 7 stated

                    >Since Stephen originally offered his view a few years ago on
                    >Crosstalk (and it was not taken up), would any be interested in
                    >Stephen or me putting together a synopsis of the arguments we offered
                    >on either side (mine were very tentative indeed, since NT scholarship
                    >isn't my professional field) and then joining in?

                    I made the false assumption that your synopsis was based on the old
                    CrossTalk correspondence, rather than the more recent correspondence on
                    Synoptic-L that you had referred to in the preceding paragraph of your
                    January 7 post. Since I am not subscribed to Synoptic-L, I didn't know if
                    that more recent exchange covered the ground sufficiently that your
                    synopsis would be based only on the Synoptic-L posts. Thanks for the
                    clarification.

                    [snip]
                    Later you quoted me:

                    > > Tom,
                    > > Your summary seems to be cut off at this point; would you please
                    >supply the
                    > > remainder?...

                    And you replied:
                    >I tried to supply the remainder in a Pt 2 post. Did it come through on
                    >others' machines? All but my email address is visible on the archives
                    >as I have access to them.

                    Yes; all came through but your email address at the end of your "signature".


                    >I hope this helps clear the underbrush.

                    Yes, it does. Thanks!

                    [remainder snipped.]

                    Bob


                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Stephen C. Carlson
                    ... As you are now aware, this exchange occurred last week, and it turns out that the focus on my views are on Matthew s view of Peter, with comparison to
                    Message 9 of 23 , Jan 10, 2001
                      At 09:00 PM 1/9/01 -0800, Bob Schacht wrote:
                      >Second, Stephen, assuming that this exchange occurred before the Ted Weeden
                      >posts on GMark (mainly posted during May 2000 to XTalk), have his posts
                      >changed any of your views in what follows?

                      As you are now aware, this exchange occurred last week, and it
                      turns out that the focus on my views are on Matthew's view of
                      Peter, with comparison to Mark. It is interesting to me that
                      a gospel usually thought of as being pro-Petrine because of the
                      "Blessed are you Peter!" passage, fails to improve Mark's portrait
                      of Peter at many important points, omits some Peter favorable
                      material in Mark, and reduces Peter's insider status by changing
                      Mark's mentioning of Peter by name into a broader "disciples."
                      There is something going on in Matthew's gospel and I'm not sure
                      what it is. It is almost as if Matthew is siding with the 12
                      disciples (= Jerusalem church?) against Peter, but the real target
                      may be Paul, whom Peter accommodated.

                      Stephen Carlson
                      --
                      Stephen C. Carlson mailto:scarlson@...
                      Synoptic Problem Home Page http://www.mindspring.com/~scarlson/synopt/
                      "Poetry speaks of aspirations, and songs chant the words." Shujing 2.35
                    • Thomas A. Kopecek
                      ... If you are right (and you may be), Paul indeed may be the real target. There is a string of things that may support this, and I m just brain-storming here,
                      Message 10 of 23 , Jan 11, 2001
                        --- In crosstalk2@egroups.com, "Stephen C. Carlson" <scarlson@m...>
                        wrote:

                        > There is something going on in Matthew's gospel and I'm not sure
                        > what it is. It is almost as if Matthew is siding with the 12
                        > disciples (= Jerusalem church?) against Peter, but the real target
                        > may be Paul, whom Peter accommodated.

                        If you are right (and you may be), Paul indeed may be the real
                        target.

                        There is a string of things that may support this, and I'm just
                        brain-storming here, not doing anything very systematic. (1) The Great
                        Commission comes immediately to mind, where the risen Jesus sends the
                        disciples out to teach everything he has commanded, which surely is
                        connected with Jesus' interpretation of Torah in Matthew, a Torah
                        which Paul undermined: Mt earlier has omitted Mk's "Jesus declared all
                        foods clean." (2) Paul calls the Corinthian church God's "temple,"
                        whereas Mt includes a story which has Jesus pay his tax to the actual,
                        physical Jewish temple while it still stood--granted Jesus' prediction
                        of its fall (and Peter's tax was paid as well: I wonder what the
                        historical Peter was doing about this tax?). (3) Toward the end of the
                        Sermon on the Mount in 7:21 Jesus says, "Not every one who says to me,
                        'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the
                        will of my Father who is in heaven." This seems to be countering the
                        thought-world of Romans 10:9-13: "If you confess with your lips that
                        Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the
                        dead, you will be saved . . . . For 'everyone who calls upon the name
                        of the Lord will be saved.' " (4) And even Mt 7:22-23 may be aimed at
                        claims such as those forwarded by Paul in Galatians 3:5 (within the
                        context of Gal 3:1-5 and the whole thrust of Galatians).

                        Thus, though you've not convinced me yet about the portrait of Peter
                        in Matthew, Stephen, you've certainly begun to get me to think through
                        not only your thesis but its possible implications: a pro-Paul gospel
                        (Mark) and a pro-Jerusalem/'anti-Peter who accommodated Paul' gospel
                        (Matthew).

                        I guess it is time to add to this investivation a look at precisely
                        how James is handled in Mark and Matthew. I recall Goodacre giving a
                        list of anti-James passages in Mark some years ago on Crosstalk. What
                        does Mt do with them--and James in general?

                        Certainly in the later Ebionite literature buried in the
                        Pseudo-Clementina James comes off extremely well. And Jerome quotes a
                        passage about a resurrection appearance of Jesus which is very
                        favorable to James (who is the one who swore the oath sworn by Jesus
                        in canonical Mk and Mt, though regarding the bread, not the wine)--yet
                        which is quite in contrast to the ending of canonical Matthew. But
                        this resurrection appearance story may be Nazorean rather than
                        Ebionite, or there may have been all sorts of branches of these
                        movements that developed as the centuries progressed.

                        "The Gospel called 'according to the Hebrews', which was recently
                        translated by me into Greek and Latin, which Origen frequently uses,
                        records after the resurrection of the Savior these words: 'And when
                        the Lord had given the linen cloth to the servant of the priest
                        [apparently this was the cloth in which he was embalmed] , he went to
                        James and appeared to him. For James had sworn that he would not eat
                        bread from that hour in which he had drunk the cup of the Lord until
                        he should see him risen from among them that sleep [= those who are
                        dead]. And shortly thereafter the Lord said, "Bring a table and
                        bread!" ' And immediately it is added, 'Jesus took the bread, blessed
                        it, and broke it, and gave it to James the Just and said to him, "My
                        brother, eat your bread, for the Son of Man is risen from among them
                        that sleep." ' Jerome, De Vir. Ill. 2.


                        I thank you very much for a most stimulating set of suggestions,
                        Stephen.

                        Tom

                        ---
                        Thomas A. Kopecek
                        Professor of Religion
                        Central Col
                      • Ted Weeden
                        The recent exchanges on Xtalk ( between Tom Kopecek, Stephen Carlson, Bob Schacht and Mark Goodacre) concerning the Matthean portrait of Peter vs. the Markan
                        Message 11 of 23 , Jan 11, 2001
                          The recent exchanges on Xtalk ( between Tom Kopecek, Stephen Carlson, Bob
                          Schacht and Mark Goodacre) concerning the Matthean portrait of Peter vs. the
                          Markan portrait of Peter has caught my eye, particularly since my view of
                          the way in which Mark and Matthew treat Peter has entered the discussion.
                          Thus, I break my silence of some time in the on-going discussion on Xtalk
                          addressing the issue of the evangelists' portrayal of Peter to offer my take
                          on the issue.

                          Before I do so I want to explain my long absence as a participant in the
                          stimulating discussions on this very fine list. As many of you know, I am
                          working on a commentary on Mark, and have from time to time floated some
                          theses I am working on for response from members of the list. Members have
                          been very helpful to me in raising issues which I find I must address with
                          greater supportive evidence and cogent argumentation. In this regard I
                          still owe Mahlon Smith a response to my position that Mark's provenance
                          cannot have been Judea, as Mahlon argues, but Caesarea Philippi. I also
                          still owe Stephen Carlson a response to his challenge of my position that
                          Mark created de novo the Petrine denial. I have been delayed in mounting
                          arguments for my positions to be sent to both Mahlon and Stephen. The
                          delays are caused by several factors: problems with my health, professional
                          responsibilities, my ailing mother (who at almost 91 by sheer will power
                          continues to escape the throes of death), and finally the nature of my work
                          on the commentary.

                          On the latter I have been working on a number of fronts at one time, trying
                          to piece together the many facets of Mark in a wholistic way, with what I
                          think are new and, hopefully, convincing understandings concerning the
                          gospel. In this regard, I have been working on a long piece (perhaps too
                          long for this list) detailing carefully an argument for Johannine dependency
                          upon Mark for his passion narrative and other features of his gospel (as
                          part of my response to Stephen). I think now that I can show that John
                          transforms Mark's suffering-servant, Son-of-Man christology into his own
                          glorious and triumphant Son-of-Man christology. John does so as a
                          corrective to Mark. I think John got his "hour" motif from Mark (14:41),
                          transvalued its Markan features and used it as a supportive theme for his
                          own christological drama and point of view.

                          Moreover, since the Caesarea Philippi incident has just recently come under
                          discussion, I think I can show that John borrowed Mk. 8:27-29 and adapted
                          it for his own purposes to create the dialogue between John the Baptist and
                          the Pharisees in John's opening scene of his gospel (1:19-22). John takes
                          the "question" motif of Mk. 8:27-9 ("who do men/you say I am?"), slightly
                          rephrases it ("who are you?"), uses the same personnel Mark supplies with
                          the answers to Jesus' questions (namely, "John the Baptist," "Elijah," "one
                          of the prophets" [Jn= "the prophet"], "the Messiah," to construct his
                          narrative. He turns John the Baptist (vs. Mark's disciples) into the
                          respondent, reverses the climactic end of the Markan narrative by turning
                          Peter's "confession" that Jesus is "the Messiah" into JB's Messianic
                          disavowing confession ("He confessed, did not deny it (allusion to Petrine
                          denial?) but confessed, 'I am not the Messiah,'" 1:20), and leads off with
                          it in the dialogue he created between JB and the Pharisees. He then
                          continues with the original Markan order of Markan identity suggestions,
                          Elijah, the prophet, which the Pharisees continue to pose to JB. Following
                          that John draws upon the introduction to Mark's gospel to complete his
                          opening scene (1:19-28) following his prologue (1:1-18). John adopts the
                          the Isaianic quote of Mk. 1:3 and the Markan material on JB (1:5, 7-8) and
                          interweaves it with his previous identity-questioning motif (1:23-28).

                          I have been further delayed in completing this project because
                          Kloppenborg-Verbun's _Excavating Q_, along with the recent dialogue with
                          Bill Arnal on this list, has caused me to give another look at Q and its
                          relation to Mark. I am now convinced that Mark knew and drew upon passages
                          and motifs in 2Q and 3Q to as material for the developing of his
                          introduction which is created using the Isaianic template of a new exodus to
                          the promised land (in Mark's case, Galilee: see my Xtalk post of last
                          spring). Specifically, Mk appropriated Q 7:27 (Lk 7:27) and intercalated
                          it (common Markan compositional practice) between the citation of the
                          Isaianic prophet (1:2) and his prophecy (1:3). He then adopted and adapted
                          Q 3:16 (Lk 3:16) for his profile of JB, as Jesus' precursor (so already
                          established by Q 7:27), with the idea to describe JB's dress as Elijah
                          suggested by the allusion to John's dress in Q 7:25 (Lk, 7:25) and Q's
                          identification of JB with Elijah (so Q 7:27 vis-a-vis Mal. 3:1, 4:5; see K-V
                          [EQ]).

                          I share all of this to indicate where my thinking is taking me and explain
                          my absence from the Xtalk dialogue. I hope to be able to refine and fully
                          develop these directions of my thinking and share with the rest of you for
                          your critical and helpful assessment. It may be a while before I can do
                          that.

                          In the meantime, to return to the question as to whether Matthew has a more
                          positive or negative presentation of Peter than Mark. As already noted by
                          others in the current discussion, I hold to the position that Matthew
                          reworks Mark's negative profile into one that treats Peter more positively.
                          I have provided the arguments for that in my _Mark_, 1971/79: 23-51. I
                          still stand by the arguments I made there. Unfortunately, I have not had an
                          opportunity to access Stephen Carlson full argument, contrary to my view of
                          Matthew's portait of Peter and have only seen recent snippets provided by
                          Tom Kopecek. So until I do see Stephen's argument in full,I will limit my
                          discussion in support of my thesis that Matthew gives a more positive
                          profile of Peter than Mark to one of the key texts which has served as a
                          focus for the debate on the list, namely the Caesarea Philippi episode (Mt.
                          16:13-23/Mk 8:27-33). I use it now as a case in point to support my thesis.

                          Let me begin with a look at the Caesrea-Philippi narrative as it unfolds in
                          Mark and Matthew through Mk. 8:29 and Mt. 1620. No one that I know of would
                          deny that the investiture of Peter by Jesus in Mt. 16:17-19 far exceeds any
                          approbation given to Peter in this specific text or anywhere else in Mark.
                          So up to that point in the narrative, Peter fares better at the hands of
                          Matthew. What about following the investiture?

                          It has been argued by Stephen Carlson and Mark Goodacre that Peter fares
                          poorly in Matthew, more so than Mark, after the investiture. Mark argues,
                          if I understand him corrrectly, that narrative criticism gives us a
                          different slant on the portrait of Peter (more positive) in the Matthean CP
                          episode when we take narrative criticism more seriously and free ourselves
                          from slavish dependency upon redaction criticism. So let me follow Mark
                          Goodacre's urging and address the texts from a narrative-critical following
                          Mt. 16:19 and Mk. 8:29. I begin with the Markan text. Narrative
                          criticism argues, among other things, that an author essentially influences
                          the hearers/readers by setting up certain topoi, themes or motifs in advance
                          of a point at which those topoi, motifs or themes will shape the
                          interpertation at critical points in the narrative. And that is exactly
                          what Mark has done with the motif of "rebuke" (EPITIMAW) in his narrative
                          prior to the Petrine confession. The word EPITIMAW is used three times
                          (1:25; 3:12; 4:39) prior to Mk. 8:30 and in each case it is used exclusively
                          with respect to rebuking demons or demonic forces (the wind in 4:39) in the
                          course of exorcism. No other meaning of EPITIMAW is given to the
                          hearers/readers than one which is directly related to exorcising demons.
                          It is true that the word can be translated as "charge" or "sternly order," a
                          more "limpish" use of the word. But that is not the case in the first eight
                          chapters in Mark. After the Caesarea Philippi the word is used again in
                          the context of exorcism (9:25), though admittedly it has the more "limpish"
                          meaning of "sternly ordered" as it is found in 10:13 and 10:48, the only
                          other occurrences in the last half of the gospel. But if that is the
                          intent of the meaning in those passages, the hearers/readers from the point
                          of view of narrative criticism have not been offered that meaning of the
                          word by the Markan story at the point they are introduced to the Caesarea
                          Philippi episode.

                          My contention is that Mark's use of the word EPITIMAW three times (rather
                          surprising concentration of the use of the word in two verses, compared to
                          its use throughout the gospel) in the CP episode has been intentionally
                          nuanced by him with an exorcism interpretation. What he wants the
                          hearers/readers to conclude is that the exchange between Peter in 8:32f. is
                          analogous to a contest between exorcists. Peter tries to exorcise Jesus of
                          the "demon" that would cause him to accept for himself the path of a
                          suffering servant who would be killed by his religious adversaries. And
                          Jesus turns, as a result of Peter's attempted exorcism of him, upon Peter
                          and rebukes the demon in Peter, whom Jesus identifies as Satan himself. I
                          would argue that the same "exorcistic" meaning of EPITIMAW is intended by
                          Mark 8:30 where Jesus silences the disciples and Peter from being tempted to
                          accept Peter's false (demonically inspired?) confession. Peter is then
                          rejected by Jesus as Satanic, possessed by Satan, who leads Peter to think
                          like human beings and not like God (8:33).

                          Now let us look at how Matthew treats this exchange between Peter and Jesus.
                          And here I draw upon redaction criticism, too, specifically with the way
                          Matthew redacts Mark Note that Jesus only partially corrects the Petrine
                          confession in Matthew, unlike Mark, where I think it is totally rejected by
                          Jesus. For in Matthew, Peter's confession is not only that Jesus is the
                          Messiah but also "the Son of the Living God (16:16). Note that following
                          the investiture of Peter in Matthew, Jesus only rejects the "Messiah"
                          christology, not the "Son of God" christology when Jesus commands the
                          disciples not to tell about him. Thus Peter in Matthew is more nearly
                          correct in his christological insight than he is in Mark- a more positive
                          spin on Peter's perspicacity.

                          Note also that Matthew has significantly altered the wording in which he
                          denotes Jesus silencing the "Messiah" part of Peter's confession. Instead
                          of following Mark and using Mark's "exorcism-laden" word EPITIMAW, Matthew
                          (16:20) chooses to use in its place a more neutral, as far as exorcism is
                          concerned, less heavily freighted word, DIASTELLW ("charge," "command").
                          [Matthew uses EPITIMAW only once prior to the CP episode, namely, he follows
                          Mark in using it to cite Jesus rebuking the wind, 8:26. Matthew does not
                          narrate the Markan story of Jesus exorcising the unclean spirit in the
                          Capernaum synagogue (Mk. 1:21-28, nor the Markan summary of 1:32-34]
                          Matthew does follow Mark in using EPITIMAW when he cites Peter's rebuke of
                          Jesus. But, curiously, he does not follow Mark in using EPITIMAW to
                          describe Jesus' rebuke (exorcism) of Peter's satanic possession. Thus,
                          Matthew takes the sting out of the strident exchange between Peter and Jesus
                          in Mark. By substituting DIASTELLW for EPITIMAW in 16:20 he nuances Mark's
                          EPITIMAW in his account toward the meaning of "sternly order" or "command"
                          as is the meaning of DIASTELLW. Moreover, by not using EPITIMAW in his
                          depiction of Jesus' rebuke of Peter, as is the case in Mark, Matthew changes
                          Jesus' "exorcistic" attack on Peter to a reprimand of Peter for "tempting"
                          (SKANDALON) Jesus to turn from his course set forth by God (16:23). Peter
                          fares better at the hands of Matthew in this case.

                          One final note, unlike Mark, Matthew depicts Peter as rebuking Jesus because
                          he cannot conceive of the fact that the things which Jesus predicts will
                          actually happen to Jesus. And he protests, unlike Mark, with a title of
                          reverence and deference when he addresses his concern to Jesus. Namely, he
                          calls him KURIE (16:22). Thus, while Peter in Matthew certainly does not
                          end up in the CP episode with the same glowing depiction as in the
                          investiture, he still fares more positively, even in his darker moments at
                          the end of the Matthean CP episode than he does in Mark.

                          I apologize for the length of this post. Unforrtunately I am now in haste
                          to depart for almost a week, as I visit my ailing mother in Florida. I
                          will be back by next Wednesday and will reply then should there be any
                          responses to this post, and also pick up on Stephen's arguments.

                          Ted Weeden
                        • Jan Sammer
                          From: Thomas A. Kopecek ... One place where Mark wields the axe against James is in 3:31-55. (Matthew renders this passage almost
                          Message 12 of 23 , Jan 13, 2001
                            From: "Thomas A. Kopecek" <kopecekt@...>
                            >
                            > I guess it is time to add to this investivation a look at precisely
                            > how James is handled in Mark and Matthew. I recall Goodacre giving a
                            > list of anti-James passages in Mark some years ago on Crosstalk. What
                            > does Mt do with them--and James in general?

                            One place where Mark wields the axe against James is in 3:31-55. (Matthew
                            renders this passage almost verbatim in 12:46-50, with one significant
                            difference.). In Mark, Jesus rejects his natural family and looks at the
                            people around him who believe in him and calls them his family. In Matthew
                            Jesus rejects his natural family and looks at the twelve and calls them his
                            family. My contention is that the purpose of this passage was to undercut
                            the power wielded by Jesus' relatives in the Jerusalem Church, the most
                            notable among whom was his brother James. However, while Mark seeks to
                            substitute the family's authority with the authority of believers, in a
                            spirit consistent with Paul's interests, Matthew reserves this honor for the
                            twelve. This is consistent with Tom Kopecek's and Stephen Carlson's
                            contention (if I understand it correctly) that Mark is more pro-Pauline than
                            Matthew. While Mark rejects both the family and the twelve as sources of
                            authority, Matthew is more accommodating towards the twelve, while still
                            rejecting the family.

                            The hostility ascribed to Jesus towards his family could be explained if at
                            the time of the writing of these gospels James were still in a position of
                            power, i.e., the head of the Jerusalem Church. If, as Ted Weeden contends,
                            Mark's gospel was written to oppose the Christology (I would say,
                            "traditional authority") of Peter and the twelve, the evidence on James
                            further suggests that it was written in opposition to the leadership of the
                            Jerusalem Church. Last May Mark Cameron suggested that James was the
                            unidentified disciple in Luke's story of the Walk to Emmaus. The suppression
                            of James in this gospel would reinforce the idea that "cutting James down to
                            size" was among the purposes of all three synoptics. Encounters with the
                            resurrected Jesus served as a source of authority in the post-resurrection
                            period; thus passing over a tradition that James met with the resurrected
                            Jesus could be seen as an attempt to undercut that authority. Of course this
                            implies that James was still alive and in a position of power at the time
                            that these gospels were written. Paul, too, derived his authority from an
                            encounter with the resurrected Jesus, as did Peter. But Paul was never one
                            of the twelve. That is why the difference in the Matthean and Markan
                            rendering of the episode of the rejection of the family is so telling.
                            >
                            > Certainly in the later Ebionite literature buried in the
                            > Pseudo-Clementina James comes off extremely well. And Jerome quotes a
                            > passage about a resurrection appearance of Jesus which is very
                            > favorable to James (who is the one who swore the oath sworn by Jesus
                            > in canonical Mk and Mt, though regarding the bread, not the wine)--yet
                            > which is quite in contrast to the ending of canonical Matthew. But
                            > this resurrection appearance story may be Nazorean rather than
                            > Ebionite, or there may have been all sorts of branches of these
                            > movements that developed as the centuries progressed.
                            >
                            > "The Gospel called 'according to the Hebrews', which was recently
                            > translated by me into Greek and Latin, which Origen frequently uses,
                            > records after the resurrection of the Savior these words: 'And when
                            > the Lord had given the linen cloth to the servant of the priest
                            > [apparently this was the cloth in which he was embalmed] , he went to
                            > James and appeared to him. For James had sworn that he would not eat
                            > bread from that hour in which he had drunk the cup of the Lord until
                            > he should see him risen from among them that sleep [= those who are
                            > dead]. And shortly thereafter the Lord said, "Bring a table and
                            > bread!" ' And immediately it is added, 'Jesus took the bread, blessed
                            > it, and broke it, and gave it to James the Just and said to him, "My
                            > brother, eat your bread, for the Son of Man is risen from among them
                            > that sleep." ' Jerome, De Vir. Ill. 2.
                            >
                            This is a most interesting parallel to the Luke's Walk to Emmaus and
                            reinforces Mark Cameron's thesis, referred to above, that the unidentified
                            disciple in that episode is James. It would seem that there were accounts in
                            circulation at the time of the writing of the gospels of James' encounter
                            with the resurrected Jesus, and that these stories served as the source of
                            James' authority as head of the Jerusalem church. If one wanted to undercut
                            this authority, the best way would be to suppress these stories and this is
                            what the canonical gospels attempt to do.

                            Jan
                          • Thomas A. Kopecek
                            ... explained if at ... position of ... contends, ... James ... leadership of the ... suppression ... James down to ... with the ... post-resurrection ...
                            Message 13 of 23 , Jan 13, 2001
                              --- In crosstalk2@egroups.com, "Jan Sammer" <sammer@i...> wrote:

                              > The hostility ascribed to Jesus towards his family could be
                              explained if at
                              > the time of the writing of these gospels James were still in a
                              position of
                              > power, i.e., the head of the Jerusalem Church. If, as Ted Weeden
                              contends,
                              > Mark's gospel was written to oppose the Christology (I would say,
                              > "traditional authority") of Peter and the twelve, the evidence on
                              James
                              > further suggests that it was written in opposition to the
                              leadership
                              of the
                              > Jerusalem Church. Last May Mark Cameron suggested that James was the
                              > unidentified disciple in Luke's story of the Walk to Emmaus. The
                              suppression
                              > of James in this gospel would reinforce the idea that "cutting
                              James
                              down to
                              > size" was among the purposes of all three synoptics. Encounters
                              with
                              the
                              > resurrected Jesus served as a source of authority in the
                              post-resurrection
                              > period; thus passing over a tradition that James met with the
                              resurrected
                              > Jesus could be seen as an attempt to undercut that authority. Of
                              course this
                              > implies that James was still alive and in a position of power at
                              the
                              time
                              > that these gospels were written. Paul, too, derived his authority
                              from an
                              > encounter with the resurrected Jesus, as did Peter. But Paul was
                              never one
                              > of the twelve. That is why the difference in the Matthean and Markan
                              > rendering of the episode of the rejection of the family is so
                              telling.
                              > >
                              > > Certainly in the later Ebionite literature buried in the
                              > > Pseudo-Clementina James comes off extremely well. And Jerome
                              quotes a
                              > > passage about a resurrection appearance of Jesus which is very
                              > > favorable to James (who is the one who swore the oath sworn by
                              Jesus
                              > > in canonical Mk and Mt, though regarding the bread, not the
                              wine)--yet
                              > > which is quite in contrast to the ending of canonical Matthew. But
                              > > this resurrection appearance story may be Nazorean rather than
                              > > Ebionite, or there may have been all sorts of branches of these
                              > > movements that developed as the centuries progressed.
                              > >
                              > > "The Gospel called 'according to the Hebrews', which was recently
                              > > translated by me into Greek and Latin, which Origen frequently
                              uses,
                              > > records after the resurrection of the Savior these words: 'And
                              when
                              > > the Lord had given the linen cloth to the servant of the priest
                              > > [apparently this was the cloth in which he was embalmed] , he
                              went
                              to
                              > > James and appeared to him. For James had sworn that he would not
                              eat
                              > > bread from that hour in which he had drunk the cup of the Lord
                              until
                              > > he should see him risen from among them that sleep [= those who
                              are
                              > > dead]. And shortly thereafter the Lord said, "Bring a table and
                              > > bread!" ' And immediately it is added, 'Jesus took the bread,
                              blessed
                              > > it, and broke it, and gave it to James the Just and said to him,
                              "My
                              > > brother, eat your bread, for the Son of Man is risen from among
                              them
                              > > that sleep." ' Jerome, De Vir. Ill. 2.
                              > >
                              > This is a most interesting parallel to the Luke's Walk to Emmaus and
                              > reinforces Mark Cameron's thesis, referred to above, that the
                              unidentified
                              > disciple in that episode is James. It would seem that there were
                              accounts in
                              > circulation at the time of the writing of the gospels of James'
                              encounter
                              > with the resurrected Jesus, and that these stories served as the
                              source of
                              > James' authority as head of the Jerusalem church. If one wanted to
                              undercut
                              > this authority, the best way would be to suppress these stories
                              and
                              this is
                              > what the canonical gospels attempt to do.

                              Thank you, Jan, for this reference to Mark Cameron's lengthy post in
                              May of 2000. I wasn't reading Crosstalk then. But now I've just found
                              and read the post in the archives and find it very stimulating.

                              Tom

                              ___
                              Thomas A. Kopecek
                              Professor of Religion
                              Central College, Pella, IA 50219
                              kopecekt@...

                              *****

                              *****

                              *****
                            • Bob Schacht
                              ... In what way? The chief(?) difference is that Mark says the three were terrified , whereas in Matthew they fell to the ground and were overcome by fear.
                              Message 14 of 23 , Jan 13, 2001
                                At 05:30 PM 1/9/01 +0000, Thomas A. Kopecek wrote:
                                >[snip]
                                >***
                                >I. FIRST EXCHANGE:
                                >
                                >... Finally, the presence in Mark of Peter, James, and John
                                >at the raising of Jairus' daughter is a foreshadowing of the
                                >transfiguration scene in Mark 9:2-13, which is very negative toward the
                                >inner core of the Three, just as 9:14-29 and 48-41 are negative toward the
                                >rest of the disciples. Matthew obviously softens Mk's transfiguration
                                >story's negative portrait of the three.

                                In what way? The chief(?) difference is that Mark says the three were
                                "terrified", whereas in Matthew they "fell to the ground and were overcome
                                by fear." What am I missing? Stephen also wonders, quoting from the second
                                exchange:
                                >[Stephen]
                                >Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't see what is "very negative"
                                >in the Transfiguration and how Matthew "obviously softens" the "negative
                                >portrait" of Peter. Both Matthew and Mark state that Peter was afraid
                                >(Mark 9:6, Matt 17:6) -- I don't think that would be viewed negatively
                                >under the circumstances.

                                Tom answered in the Third Exchange:
                                >...[Tom]
                                >
                                >The issue is the order of the sayings, in my opinion, and some of the
                                >particulars of the sayings. Mk has in 9:6 the words, "For Peter did
                                >not know what to say." That isn't in Mt...

                                This is an interesting point. Maybe the only time in the NT where Peter was
                                at a loss for words? :-)

                                Resuming from the first exchange:

                                >[Stephen]
                                > > In fact, Mark at 11:21 (withered fig tree),
                                >
                                >[Tom]
                                >...Jesus then goes on to talk about not doubting and having faith in
                                >prayer, which Peter, like the rest of the 12 mentioned back in 9:27 in a
                                >comparable passage, never does in Mark, at least as far as I can see
                                >(while Jesus prays later on, Peter sleeps, for instance).

                                Peter sleeps in Mk14:37//Mt26:40, both equally negative, so far as I can see.

                                > This passage in 11:22 also echoes, as I see it, the stilling of the
                                > storm passage, "Have you still no faith?"

                                Mk4:36f//Mt8:23f. But Peter is not mentioned by name.


                                >[Stephen]
                                > >13:3 (private apocalypse),
                                >
                                >[Tom]
                                >Yes, Peter is present,

                                But is only named explicitly in Mark (along with James, John & Andrew.)

                                >[Stephen]
                                > > ... In a special-Matthew parable (or Matthean redaction of
                                > > Q), Peter is told to forgive 77 times (18:21),

                                //Luke 17:4. Alternatively, Luke redaction of Q because he is generally
                                more favorable to Peter?

                                >...[Tom]
                                >The more positive portrayal of Peter in Mt agrees with the Temple
                                >Tax story in 17:24ff and the eschatological judgment verse in 19:28, in my
                                >opinion. ...

                                I think you mean 19:27 (no parallels), quoting Peter, with 19:28f// giving
                                the favorable interpretation.


                                >II. SECOND EXCHANGE
                                >
                                >[Stephen]
                                >Thank you very much for your response. In this message, it is
                                >important to keep in mind that my thesis is that Mark's portrayal
                                >of Peter is in many respects less negative than Matthew. ...

                                Then how do you account for
                                Mt 17:24ff
                                Mt 19:27ff
                                which, as Tom has pointed out, seem more favorable to Peter?

                                >...
                                >
                                >III. THIRD EXCHANGE
                                > ...
                                >
                                >[Tom]
                                >It is precisely Mk's attribution of a leadership role to Peter that
                                >highlights Peter's lack of faith, just his leadership role was
                                >highlighted when *he* spoke in the Transfiguration account in Mk and we
                                >were told by Mk that he didn't have a clue about what was going on: that
                                >is, he is the leader of those to whom Jesus earlier said (and continues to
                                >say throughout the gospel), "Have you no faith?"--which in Matthew is
                                >changed, of course, to "men of little faith." At least Peter got out of
                                >the boat and tried to employ that little faith before he began to sink and
                                >needed to call upon the name of the Lord, as it were.

                                I wonder if we need to distinguish here between Peter's tendency to talk
                                (or act) first and think later, and any hypothetical role of "leader,"
                                which might be anachronistic. Just because someone is impulsive doesn't
                                necessarily make him a leader. Nevertheless, your general point about
                                whether or not Peter is being singled out by either Mark or Matthew as
                                having (or not having) faith is worth pursuing.

                                >...[Tom, re Mark 16:7]
                                >I wasn't making myself clear. What I meant to say was that I see no
                                >hint in Mk of Peter ever going *to Galilee* to experience a resurrection
                                >appearance: that's where Jesus said he was leading the disciples,
                                >especially Peter, according to Mk 14:28 and 16:7....

                                Given the short ending of Mark, is this probative? Aren't you relying
                                essentially on negative evidence?

                                I am grateful to Tom for assembling the Three Exchanges, to share with XTalk.

                                Generally, Stephen has made a good case for Matthew putting a negative spin
                                on Peter.
                                Peter doesn't emerge unscathed from *any* of the gospels. But we need to
                                differentiate a number of factors:
                                1. If the actual historical Peter was a bungler-- impulsive, outspoken,
                                etc.-- then a negative portrayal is not necessarily "spin"-- it could be
                                historical.
                                2. If the actual historical Peter was impulsive and outspoken, then the
                                observation that Matthew and/or Mark portray Peter as the one asking
                                questions, etc. doesn't necessarily mean that Peter was regarded as a
                                leader. We should be wary of retrojecting the later propaganda of the
                                church into the gospel narratives. Leaders are measured by followers, and
                                Peter's primary "followers" seem to have been the Boanerges brothers-- even
                                in Acts. But this is a topic that merits more extensive study than I can
                                give it here.
                                3. If a gospel source seems to be putting a negative spin on Peter, we need
                                to look for the connecting thread. Weeden has attempted to do this for
                                GMark by connecting the negative spin to different Christologies. What is
                                the connecting thread in GMatthew?
                                4. I appreciate the attempts to evaluate the apparent spin in any
                                particular passage in terms of the narrative frame and wider context.

                                Thanks,
                                Bob

                                Bob


                                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                              • Stephen C. Carlson
                                ... For Mt 17:24ff (the Temple Tax), Peter is asked about Jesus s position on the Temple Tax, which he answers without checking with Jesus. When Peter does
                                Message 15 of 23 , Jan 14, 2001
                                  At 11:15 PM 1/13/01 -0800, Bob Schacht wrote:
                                  >>II. SECOND EXCHANGE
                                  >>[Stephen]
                                  >>Thank you very much for your response. In this message, it is
                                  >>important to keep in mind that my thesis is that Mark's portrayal
                                  >>of Peter is in many respects less negative than Matthew. ...
                                  >
                                  >Then how do you account for
                                  >Mt 17:24ff
                                  >Mt 19:27ff
                                  >which, as Tom has pointed out, seem more favorable to Peter?

                                  For Mt 17:24ff (the Temple Tax), Peter is asked about Jesus's
                                  position on the Temple Tax, which he answers without checking
                                  with Jesus. When Peter does so, he turns out to be wrong (kings
                                  don't tax their children), but Jesus saves his face with a
                                  miracle. Not entirely negative of Peter, but not really
                                  positive of Peter either.

                                  At Mt18:27ff, both Matt and Mark give Peter the same prominence
                                  in asking the question, but Matt has additional matter about the
                                  "12 thrones." Rather than highlighting Peter in specific compared
                                  to Mark, Matt instead highlights the disciples generally (i.e.
                                  12 thrones for 12 apostles). Matt's common choice to pump up the
                                  disciples generally (even if Peter is understood to be a member)
                                  does not affect my thesis. There are many examples of that.

                                  Stephen Carlson
                                  --
                                  Stephen C. Carlson mailto:scarlson@...
                                  Synoptic Problem Home Page http://www.mindspring.com/~scarlson/synopt/
                                  "Poetry speaks of aspirations, and songs chant the words." Shujing 2.35
                                • Sean du Toit
                                  Greetings. I ve been doing a lot of reading lately on historical method and what constitutes a valid method for studying the historical Jesus. [I notice this
                                  Message 16 of 23 , Nov 18, 2002
                                    Greetings.

                                    I've been doing a lot of reading lately on historical method and what
                                    constitutes a valid method for studying the historical Jesus. [I notice
                                    this was briefly mentioned in another post] I'm well aware of the works by
                                    Meier, Crossan & Wright on method, but was wondering if there were any other
                                    specifically historical Jesus scholars who had worked on or proposed a
                                    method of study? Or if there are any other books on historical method that
                                    are *must* reads?

                                    Any recommendations on articles, books or links would be much appreciated.

                                    Kind Regards, sean du Toit

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                                  • William Arnal
                                    ... Two in particular, that are definitely MUST-reads: Jonathan Smith, _Drudgery Divine: On the Comparison of Early Christianities and the Religions of Late
                                    Message 17 of 23 , Nov 18, 2002
                                      Sean du Toit wrote:

                                      >method of study? Or if there are any other books on historical method
                                      > >that
                                      >are *must* reads?
                                      >
                                      >Any recommendations on articles, books or links would be much >apreciated.

                                      Two in particular, that are definitely MUST-reads:

                                      Jonathan Smith, _Drudgery Divine: On the Comparison of Early Christianities
                                      and the Religions of Late Antiquity._ U of Chicago, 1990.

                                      Burton L. Mack, "The Historical Jesus Hoopla," in Mack, _The Christian
                                      Myth._ Continuum, 2001.

                                      Bill
                                      ___________________________
                                      William Arnal
                                      Department of Religious Studies
                                      University of Regina
                                      Regina, Saskatchewan S4S 0A2



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