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Mark Used Q

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  • Andrew Smith
    While we re discussing Q, does the list think that any case can be made for Mark s use of Q, as Burton Mack suggested. This is an intriguingly minimalistic
    Message 1 of 11 , Jul 30 8:58 PM
      While we're discussing Q, does the list think that any case can be
      made for Mark's use of Q, as Burton Mack suggested. This is an
      intriguingly minimalistic view of Christian origins, but it seems to
      me that it suffers from at least two major difficulties:-

      1) It's difficult to make a convincing case that Mark used Q.

      2) If Mark used Q then the nature of Q itself has to be reassessed as
      we move from a Q that is basically double tradition to a Q that
      *could* include a lot of triple tradition, and thus get stuck in the
      circularity and fuzziness involved when we argue that that a document
      used a source and that source's source, especially when the latter is
      a reconstruction.

      Best Wishes

      Andrew Smith
    • Eric Eve
      ... I agree. One would have to show that the wording of Mark/Q parallel passages was sufficiently close in Mark and Q to demand a literary relationship between
      Message 2 of 11 , Jul 31 1:20 AM
        Andrew Smith wrote:

        > While we're discussing Q, does the list think that any case can be
        > made for Mark's use of Q, as Burton Mack suggested. This is an
        > intriguingly minimalistic view of Christian origins, but it seems to
        > me that it suffers from at least two major difficulties:-

        > 1) It's difficult to make a convincing case that Mark used Q.

        I agree. One would have to show that the wording of Mark/Q parallel passages
        was sufficiently close in Mark and Q to demand a literary relationship
        between the two (rather than a common or similar oral tradition), and I'm
        not sure that could be demonstrated without access to 'original Q' (i.e. an
        actual MS of Q as opposed to a reconstruction), especially since, I should
        imagine, the reconstruction of the precise wording of Q would be complicated
        by the presence of the Markan parallel in every case of interest.

        > 2) If Mark used Q then the nature of Q itself has to be reassessed as
        > we move from a Q that is basically double tradition to a Q that
        > *could* include a lot of triple tradition, and thus get stuck in the
        > circularity and fuzziness involved when we argue that that a document
        > used a source and that source's source, especially when the latter is
        > a reconstruction.

        I should say this was a major problem with the notion that Mark used Q. As
        Bill Arnal said elsewhere in a recent reply to Ron Preston, it opens up the
        possibility that Q could expand into a proto-Matthew by the inclusion of
        considerably more triple tradition. Once admit that Mark knew Q and, IMHO,
        you remove any solid boundary between triple tradition and double tradition,
        thereby destroying the principal criterion for what Q contains. I recall
        being quite amazed on nearing the end of _The Lost Gospel_ and finding Mack
        thought Mark used Q, since this seemed to undermine everything else he had
        said.

        Eric
        ---------------------------
        Eric Eve
        Harris Manchester College, Oxford
        email: mailto:eric.eve@...
        Home page: http://users.ox.ac.uk/~manc0049
      • Ron Price
        ... Andrew, May be so. But it s a case with which I have a lot of sympathy. The main objections seem to be the inability to explain why, if Mark used Q, did he
        Message 3 of 11 , Jul 31 5:38 AM
          Andrew Smith wrote:

          >1) It's difficult to make a convincing case that Mark used Q.

          Andrew,
          May be so. But it's a case with which I have a lot of sympathy. The
          main objections seem to be the inability to explain why, if Mark used Q,
          did he miss so much out, and why that *particular* selection? On my
          synoptic hypothesis the first is easy. His respect for the sayings
          source was not as great as that of the later synoptic writers because he
          knew it had come from the anti-Pauline faction, i.e. James et al.. The
          second is more difficult, but I'm working on it.

          >2) If Mark used Q then the nature of Q itself has to be reassessed as
          >we move from a Q that is basically double tradition to a Q that
          >*could* include a lot of triple tradition .......

          The fact that Q originated as an explanation for the double tradition,
          should not blind us to the possibility that the document which explains
          the more primitive Lukan form of some pericopae and most of the
          doublets, might not have included *all* the double tradition, and at the
          same time might have included pericopae outside the double tradition.

          But there are at least two constraints which will prevent us from
          including "a lot" of triple tradition material. One I mentioned in a
          recent posting is that for any candidate from the triple tradition we
          must be able to explain why both Matthew and Luke omitted it when
          copying the sayings source. Another is that it must cohere in style and
          theology with the core sayings. Now with Q as normally understood this
          is not much of a constraint, for the style and theology are just about
          as wide as Matthew's. But the sayings source I am proposing is much more
          focussed. It contains only sayings. It is unmistakably Jewish, with no
          hint of a mission to Gentiles and no mention of Jesus as the "Son of
          God". The style/theology constraint is therefore much more effective in
          eliminatinfg inappropriate candidate sayings.

          Ron Price

          Weston-on-Trent, Derby, UK

          e-mail: ron.price@...

          Web site: http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/index.htm
        • Barlow, James C. DOC
          Ok, Mr. Eve, but in assessing your response to Andrew s first objection, finding yourself in agreement, I was wondering if you could comment on how it is Mack
          Message 4 of 11 , Jul 31 3:23 PM
            Ok, Mr. Eve, but in assessing your response to Andrew's first objection,
            finding yourself in agreement, I was wondering if you could comment on how
            it is Mack himself neglected this indispensable criterion and went ahead to
            conclude Mark used Q anyway.

            -----Original Message-----
            From: Eric Eve [mailto:eric.eve@...]
            Sent: Tuesday, July 31, 2001 3:21 AM
            To: crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: RE: [XTalk] Mark Used Q


            Andrew Smith wrote:

            > While we're discussing Q, does the list think that any case can be
            > made for Mark's use of Q, as Burton Mack suggested. This is an
            > intriguingly minimalistic view of Christian origins, but it seems to
            > me that it suffers from at least two major difficulties:-

            > 1) It's difficult to make a convincing case that Mark used Q.

            I agree. One would have to show that the wording of Mark/Q parallel passages
            was sufficiently close in Mark and Q to demand a literary relationship
            between the two (rather than a common or similar oral tradition), and I'm
            not sure that could be demonstrated without access to 'original Q' (i.e. an
            actual MS of Q as opposed to a reconstruction), especially since, I should
            imagine, the reconstruction of the precise wording of Q would be complicated
            by the presence of the Markan parallel in every case of interest.

            > 2) If Mark used Q then the nature of Q itself has to be reassessed as
            > we move from a Q that is basically double tradition to a Q that
            > *could* include a lot of triple tradition, and thus get stuck in the
            > circularity and fuzziness involved when we argue that that a document
            > used a source and that source's source, especially when the latter is
            > a reconstruction.

            I should say this was a major problem with the notion that Mark used Q. As
            Bill Arnal said elsewhere in a recent reply to Ron Preston, it opens up the
            possibility that Q could expand into a proto-Matthew by the inclusion of
            considerably more triple tradition. Once admit that Mark knew Q and, IMHO,
            you remove any solid boundary between triple tradition and double tradition,
            thereby destroying the principal criterion for what Q contains. I recall
            being quite amazed on nearing the end of _The Lost Gospel_ and finding Mack
            thought Mark used Q, since this seemed to undermine everything else he had
            said.

            Eric
            ---------------------------
            Eric Eve
            Harris Manchester College, Oxford
            email: mailto:eric.eve@...
            Home page: http://users.ox.ac.uk/~manc0049












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          • Mark Goodacre
            ... I suppose one difficulty with the theory is that it rather sharply focuses the issue of why Mark used so little of Q, and takes us back to discussions of
            Message 5 of 11 , Jul 31 4:20 PM
              On 31 Jul 2001, at 3:58, Andrew Smith wrote:

              > While we're discussing Q, does the list think that any case can be
              > made for Mark's use of Q, as Burton Mack suggested. This is an
              > intriguingly minimalistic view of Christian origins, but it seems to
              > me that it suffers from at least two major difficulties:-

              I suppose one difficulty with the theory is that it rather sharply
              focuses the issue of why Mark used so little of Q, and takes us
              back to discussions of Marcan Priority. Sanders argues that one
              might as well simply say that Mark used Matthew (though he
              doesn't accept that view).

              I think there's a more major problem with the view that is not often
              perceived and that is that Q often appears to presuppose material
              in Mark / the triple tradition, e.g. that John's baptism was for
              repentance (hence "You brood of vipers . . . bear fruit worthy of
              repentance"), that Jesus was known to eat with tax-collectors and
              sinners ("a glutton and a drunkard . . . .") and so on. So if there is
              any dependence, I'd say it goes in the direction of Q's use of Mark -
              - it presupposes so much in it; or perhaps a simpler explanation
              would be just to put it down to Matthew's use of Mark,
              subsequently copied by Luke.

              Mark
              -----------------------------
              Dr Mark Goodacre mailto:M.S.Goodacre@...
              Dept of Theology tel: +44 121 414 7512
              University of Birmingham fax: +44 121 414 6866
              Birmingham B15 2TT
              United Kingdom

              http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/goodacre
              Homepage
              http://NTGateway.com
              The New Testament Gateway
            • Ted Weeden
              ... (snipped) ... Mark, as soon as I finish some of the other Markan projects I am working on now, I plan to present a case for Mark s use of Q in a Markan
              Message 6 of 11 , Jul 31 5:37 PM
                Mark Goodacre wrote, Tuesday, July 31, 2001:
                > I suppose one difficulty with the theory is that it rather sharply
                > focuses the issue of why Mark used so little of Q, and takes us
                > back to discussions of Marcan Priority.

                (snipped)

                > I think there's a more major problem with the view that is not often
                > perceived and that is that Q often appears to presuppose material
                > in Mark / the triple tradition (snipped). So if there is
                > any dependence, I'd say it goes in the direction of Q's use of Mark -
                > - it presupposes so much in it; or perhaps a simpler explanation
                > would be just to put it down to Matthew's use of Mark,
                > subsequently copied by Luke.

                Mark, as soon as I finish some of the other Markan projects I am working on
                now, I plan to present a case for Mark's use of Q in a Markan text, which
                both Matthew and Luke, in appropriating the Markan text, correct Mark
                because of what they appear to construe as a Markan citation-error.

                Ted Weeden
              • Andrew Smith
                ... I once described the theory of Mark using Q as source criticism swallowing its own tail. And I must say I was rather pleased with myself. Best Andrew
                Message 7 of 11 , Jul 31 6:45 PM
                  --- In crosstalk2@y..., "Mark Goodacre" <M.S.Goodacre@b...> wrote:

                  >
                  > I suppose one difficulty with the theory is that it rather sharply
                  > focuses the issue of why Mark used so little of Q, and takes us
                  > back to discussions of Marcan Priority. Sanders argues that one
                  > might as well simply say that Mark used Matthew (though he
                  > doesn't accept that view).
                  >

                  I once described the theory of Mark using Q as "source criticism
                  swallowing its own tail." And I must say I was rather pleased with
                  myself.

                  Best

                  Andrew Smith
                • Ron Price
                  ... Mark, As you are probably aware, I fully agree that the Q pericopae you mention indicate a dependence on Mark/ the triple tradition. ... But here the
                  Message 8 of 11 , Aug 1, 2001
                    Mark Goodacre wrote:

                    >I think there's a more major problem with the view that is not often
                    >perceived and that is that Q often appears to presuppose material
                    >in Mark / the triple tradition, e.g. that John's baptism was for
                    >repentance (hence "You brood of vipers . . . bear fruit worthy of
                    >repentance"), that Jesus was known to eat with tax-collectors and
                    >sinners ("a glutton and a drunkard . . . .") and so on.

                    Mark,
                    As you are probably aware, I fully agree that the 'Q' pericopae you
                    mention indicate a dependence on Mark/ the triple tradition.

                    > ... So if there is
                    >any dependence, I'd say it goes in the direction of Q's use of Mark -
                    >- it presupposes so much in it .......

                    But here the flexibility of the 3ST comes into its own. For I have
                    elsewhere indicated a set of arguments for assigning these particular
                    pericopae (plus a few others) to Matthew, whilst retaining the bulk of
                    the sayings in a written sayings source I've called "sQ". Thus bearing
                    in mind the primitive appearance of many of the sayings, I can still
                    maintain the more likely direction of dependency of Mark (ca. 70 CE)
                    using sQ (ca. 40-50 CE).

                    Ron Price

                    Weston-on-Trent, Derby, UK

                    e-mail: ron.price@...

                    Web site: http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/index.htm
                  • William Arnal
                    ... Mark, I m afariad I m going to have to get up your nose about this again. I have very serious problems with this claim, and wish you d qualify it a little
                    Message 9 of 11 , Aug 7, 2001
                      Mark Goodacre wrote:

                      >I think there's a more major problem with the view that is not often
                      >perceived and that is that Q often appears to presuppose material
                      >in Mark / the triple tradition, e.g. that John's baptism was for
                      >repentance (hence "You brood of vipers . . . bear fruit worthy of
                      >repentance"), that Jesus was known to eat with tax-collectors and
                      >sinners ("a glutton and a drunkard . . . .") and so on. So if there

                      Mark, I'm afariad I'm going to have to get up your nose about this again. I
                      have very serious problems with this claim, and wish you'd qualify it a
                      little when you make it. I've noted in the past, it is not unreasonable to
                      expect a sayings collection to assume certain facts about its characters, or
                      indeed to CONVEY those facts via the sayings themselves (or their narrative
                      frames), rather than through narrative. And indeed, some data that might
                      appear to reflect certain narrative information from the gospels NEED not do
                      so in the context of a sayings collection. An example: that John's baptism
                      is for repentance absolutely need not be specified prior to John's speech in
                      Q -- Q is replete with calls to repentance from both Jesus and John, so in
                      fact John's words here are simply reflecting a recurrent Q redactional
                      concern. Or again, that Jesus hung out with sinners need no more be
                      narratively introduced for Q 7:34 to make sense than an episode where Jesus
                      behaves like a glutton and drunkard is necessary. AQnother example that's
                      probably clearer: q 11:19, "by whom do your sons exorcise?" What narrative
                      is presupposed here?

                      I think you've assembled LOTS of cogent arguments that would us want to
                      think twice about Q, Mark, but this isn't one of them.

                      Bill
                      ___________________________
                      William Arnal
                      Department of Religion
                      University of Manitoba



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                    • Mark Goodacre
                      Thanks for the comments, Bill. In response, several brief points: (1) Yes, I should have qualified the point a little; as it stands the paragraph was weak --
                      Message 10 of 11 , Aug 7, 2001
                        Thanks for the comments, Bill. In response, several brief points:
                        (1) Yes, I should have qualified the point a little; as it stands the
                        paragraph was weak -- I'm sure you can sympathise with off the
                        cuff responses : ) (2) The argument about narrative presupposed in
                        Q sayings is something Goulder touches on in _Luke_, Chapter 2
                        and it something that has not -- to my knowledge -- been directly
                        answered by Q scholars. I made a similar case but in a different
                        context in the SBL paper we discussed a while back; that paper
                        appears in revised form as Chapter 9 in my _The Case Against Q_,
                        out this fall/winter from Trinity. My contrast was specifically with
                        the lack of such explicit historicizing elements in Thomas. (3) In
                        the context of this email I was simply attempting to draw attention
                        to the oddity that the case for Mark's use of Q is more common
                        than the reverse case, something that is perhaps surprising given
                        the elements presupposed in Q's sayings that have parallels in
                        Mark -- but this is exactly what you are pointing to as unsurprising.
                        I like the point about Q 11.19 and the exorcisms; another that
                        occurs to me is the mention of "Chorazin", which presupposes
                        miracles having taken place there that have not been narrated in
                        Mark or Matthew; (4) With regard to the John the Baptist /
                        repentance material, yes, on the assumption of Q it is a key
                        redactional theme. Perhaps we should call it "quits" on this, but I
                        am struck by the fact that John the Baptist's preaching of
                        repentance is a key Matthaean redactional theme in this very
                        context -- Matt. 3.2 R sets this up well + 3.11. So I think I have a
                        slight edge on that one.

                        Cheers
                        Mark


                        -----------------------------
                        Dr Mark Goodacre mailto:M.S.Goodacre@...
                        Dept of Theology tel: +44 121 414 7512
                        University of Birmingham fax: +44 121 414 6866
                        Birmingham B15 2TT
                        United Kingdom

                        http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/goodacre
                        Homepage
                        http://NTGateway.com
                        The New Testament Gateway
                      • William Arnal
                        ... Yes, I know, but, as you say, I really don t find this feature (the supposed presupposition of narrative material in Q) very surprising at all. But I
                        Message 11 of 11 , Aug 7, 2001
                          Mark Goodacre wrote:

                          >(3) In
                          >the context of this email I was simply attempting to draw attention
                          >to the oddity that the case for Mark's use of Q is more common
                          >than the reverse case, something that is perhaps surprising given

                          Yes, I know, but, as you say, I really don't find this feature (the supposed
                          presupposition of narrative material in Q) very surprising at all. But I
                          realize that wasn't your primary point. My own -- off the cuff -- guess as
                          to why it is argued more often that Mark uses Q than that Q uses Mark is the
                          simple prejudice that Q is "primitive" and therefore must be early. As
                          though the development of Christianity were so precisely unilineaar!

                          >the elements presupposed in Q's sayings that have parallels in
                          >Mark -- but this is exactly what you are pointing to as unsurprising.
                          >I like the point about Q 11.19 and the exorcisms; another that
                          >occurs to me is the mention of "Chorazin", which presupposes
                          >miracles having taken place there that have not been narrated in
                          >Mark or Matthew;

                          Yes, that's a GREAT example.

                          >(4) With regard to the John the Baptist /
                          >repentance material, yes, on the assumption of Q it is a key
                          >redactional theme. Perhaps we should call it "quits" on this, but I
                          >am struck by the fact that John the Baptist's preaching of
                          >repentance is a key Matthaean redactional theme in this very
                          >context -- Matt. 3.2 R sets this up well + 3.11. So I think I have a
                          >slight edge on that one.

                          Depends on the argument you're making. If the argument is that Q's
                          presentation of John's preaching requires a narrative background, I say
                          you're building a house on sand, since, on the Q hypothesis, this is a
                          prominent redactional theme in any case. On the other hand, if you are
                          arguing that Matthew emphasizes this theme and that it is thus Matthew who
                          the source for this strong motif in the double tradition, well, you're are
                          indeed building your house on a stone foundation, but this is an argument
                          that has little to do with narrative or the absence thereof.

                          But yeah, I'm okay with calling it quits on this one too. (But notice I had
                          to try to slip in the last word.)

                          Bill
                          ___________________________
                          William Arnal
                          Department of Religion
                          University of Manitoba



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