Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [XTalk] Philonic influence?

Expand Messages
  • Walter Mattfeld
    I have found the recent discussions on Philonic thought quite fascinating as I have an article positing the presence of Greek thought and concepts in the New
    Message 1 of 6 , Jan 5, 2002
    • 0 Attachment
      I have found the recent discussions on Philonic thought quite fascinating as
      I have an article positing the presence of Greek thought and concepts in the
      New Testament which appears to me, to be non-Hebraic (not found in the OT).
      Those with an interest in this subject may access the following url
      http://www.bibleorigins.net/Presuppositions.html

      All the best, Walter

      Walter Reinhold Warttig Mattfeld
      Walldorf by Heidelberg
      Baden-Wurttemburg, Germany
      www.bibleorigins.net


      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Bob Schacht" <r_schacht@...>
      To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Sunday, January 06, 2002 4:42 AM
      Subject: Re: [XTalk] Philonic influence?
    • FMMCCOY
      ... From: Bob Schacht To: Sent: Saturday, January 05, 2002 9:42 PM Subject: Re: [XTalk] Philonic
      Message 2 of 6 , Jan 6, 2002
      • 0 Attachment
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "Bob Schacht" <r_schacht@...>
        To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Saturday, January 05, 2002 9:42 PM
        Subject: Re: [XTalk] Philonic influence?

        > [Frank]
        > >...Finally, I would like to point out that, on past posts to X-talk, I
        > >have made at least three very specific hypotheses regarding the possible
        > >influence of Philonic thought on Jesus. One is that the real Jesus of
        > >history believed himself to be Philo's Logos incarnate in the flesh.
        >
        [Bob]
        > It is easier to see that the author of GJohn considered this to be so,
        than
        > it is to demonstrate that Jesus himself believed it. There is much more
        > evidence for the former than for the latter. If what you say is true, why
        > was this remarkable fact passed over in silence by Mark, Matthew and Luke?
        > Or have I failed to remember some analysis of yours that claimed that
        > Jesus/Logos Christology is also evident in the other Gospels?

        [Frank]
        I have made posts outlining evidence that Mark's Jesus is Philo's Logos
        incarnate in the flesh as the Essenes' Branch of David (e.g., see the posts
        of 7-25, 7-31, 8-2, and 8-5). In my last post to Loren, I point out
        evidence that Jesus is Philo's Logos in the parable of the wise and foolish
        virgins (from Matthew). I have pointed out in past posts that there is
        evidence of a Logos christology in parts of Luke's infancy narrative.

        As respects the Q tradition there is evidence of a Logos Christology in Luke
        10:22-24, "And, having turned to his disciples, he said, 'All things were
        delivered to me by my Father, and no one knows who is the Son except the
        father, and who is the Father except the Son and he to whomsever may will
        the Son to reveal (Him). And, having turned apart to his disciples, he
        said, 'Blessed (are) the eyes that see what you see. For, I say to you,
        many prophets and kings desired to see what you see, and saw not, and to
        hear what you hear, and heard not.'"

        In his essay, Fuga (108-11), Philo declares that the Logos has God as his
        Father and rules the Cosmos as God's Viceroy. Hence, Jesus, by calling
        himself the Son of Father and by declaring that "all things were delivered
        to me by my Father", gives himself attributes that are also attributes of
        Philo's Logos.

        In Jesus' statement, "And no one knows who is the Son except the Father,
        and who is the Father except the Son", he might be speaking as the
        Logos--who has a uniquely intimate association with God. So, in Fuga (101),
        Philo declares, the Logos "is placed nearest, with no intervening
        distance, to the alone truly Existent One."

        In his statement, "And no one knows...who is the Father except the Son and
        he to whomsoever He may will the Son to reveal (Him)", he might be speaking
        as the Logos: who acts as the divine intermediary between man and God. So,
        in Heres (205-206), Philo states, "This same Logos both pleads with the
        immortal as suppliant for afflicted mortality and acts as ambassador of the
        ruler to the subject. He glories in this prerogative and proudly dscribes
        it in these words 'I stood between the Lord and you' (Deut. v. 5)..".

        In his statement, "For, I say to you, many prophets and kings desired to see
        what you see, and saw not, and to hear what you hear, and heard not", he
        might be speaking as the Logos. If so, then he is referring to the fact
        that the Logos, being the Word of God, personifies the speech of God and,
        therefore, speaks the words of God. In this case, it is a statement that
        his disciples, unlike all those before them, both see the Word of God as
        personified in His Logos and hear this Word of God as uttered in its purest
        form by this Logos.

        (Note: Two of the above three quotes from Philo come from Fuga 101 and Fuga
        108-11. It is noteworthy that, as I point out in a post (i.e., "John
        2:1-4:54") of Dec. 19, there is evidence that the author of John had read
        Fuga 77-114)

        There also are, I would like to point out, some passages in GTh which might
        have a Logos Christology.

        For example, in GTh 77, Jesus says, "It is I who am the light which is above
        them all. It is I who am the All. From Me did the All come forth, and unto
        Me did the All extend. Split a piece of wood, and I am there. Lift up the
        stone, and you will find me there."

        When this saying is interpreted in terms of Philo's teaching, Jesus
        speaks as Philo's Logos.

        For example, let us take the first sentence, "It is I who am the light
        which is above them all." Similarly, the Logos is a light which is above
        them all. So, in Som i, 75, Philo states, "For the model or pattern (of the
        visible light) was the Logos, which contained all His Fullness--light, in
        fact."

        Again, let us take the second sentence, "It is I who am the All." Here,
        Jesus might speak as the Logos: the Image of God, who is the
        incorporeal All beheld by the mind, of which the corporeal All beheld by
        sense-perception is a copy. So, in Op. 25, Philo declares, "The whole
        creation, this entire world perceived by our senses (seeing that it is
        greater than any human image) is a copy of the
        Divine Image. It is manifest that the archetypal seal also which we aver to
        be the world descried by the mind, would be the very Logos of God."

        Too, let us look at the first part of the third sentence, "From Me did
        the All come forth." Similarly, it is from the Logos that the corporeal All
        came forth. So, in Sacr. 8, Philo speaks about "that Logos by which also
        the whole universe was formed."

        Also, let us look at the close to this saying, "And unto Me did the All
        extend. Split a piece of wood, and I am there. Lift up the stone, and you
        will find me there." Similarly, the Logos extends himself throughout the
        corporeal All and all its parts. Thus, in Plant. 9, Philo states, "The
        evelasting Logos of the eternal God is the very sure and staunch prop of the
        Whole. He it is, who extending himself from the midst to its utmost bounds
        and from its extremities to the midst again, keeps up though all its length
        Nature's unvanquished course, combining and compacting all its parts. For
        the Father Who begat Him constituted His Logos such a Bond of the Universe
        as none can break."

        The bottom line: Evidence of a Logos Christology can be found in all the
        canonical gospel traditions and in the Thomas tradition as well. Thats a
        lot of smoke spread through a goodly number of what might be independent
        gospel traditions, so there's the possiblity, ISTM, of a fire, i.e., of an
        underlying reality that the real Jesus did claim to be Philo's Logos
        incarnate on earth.

        > >[Bob]
        > > > But you are assuming what is to be proved. How do we really know that
        they
        > > > are *Philonic* ideas? It does not follow equally that if enough ideas
        are
        > > > *attributed* to Philonic thought, then does it really increase the
        > > > probability that they actually were influenced by *Philonic* thought
        (and
        > > > not by some common tradition)?
        > >

        > >[Frank]
        > >I am assuming nothing. If an idea is present in Philonic thought, then
        it
        > >is a Philonic idea. This is a no brainer.
        >
        [Bob]
        > It is also not true. Suppose I write that I think democracy is a good
        > thing. Does that mean that democracy is a Schacht idea? There is a big
        > difference between an idea that crosses someone's mind, and an idea that
        is
        > created by someone. The latter merits credit; the former scarcely matters.

        [Frank]
        .It's now clear to me that the term "Philonic idea" is ambigous, since you
        and I have differing conceptualizations as to its meaning.

        Because the term "Philonic idea" is ambiguous I should not have used it in
        past posts and I apologize to you and to the other X-talk listers for having
        done so. In future posts, I will try to avoid this term and will try to
        only speak of ideas held by Philo. Feel free to jump all over me if, in a
        future post, I forget this and fall back on old ways!

        Frank McCoy
        1809 N. English Apt. 17
        Maplewood, MN USA 55109
      • Bob Schacht
        ... Frank, I apologize for not remembering that you had addressed these issues. It was careless of me not to check. ... Thanks for your clarification! I think
        Message 3 of 6 , Jan 6, 2002
        • 0 Attachment
          At 06:48 PM 1/6/2002 -0600, Frank McCoy wrote:

          >----- Original Message -----
          >From: "Bob Schacht" <r_schacht@...>
          >To: <crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com>
          >Sent: Saturday, January 05, 2002 9:42 PM
          >Subject: Re: [XTalk] Philonic influence?
          >
          >
          >[Bob]
          > > It is easier to see that the author of GJohn considered this to be so, than
          > > it is to demonstrate that Jesus himself believed it. There is much more
          > > evidence for the former than for the latter. If what you say is true, why
          > > was this remarkable fact passed over in silence by Mark, Matthew and Luke?
          > > Or have I failed to remember some analysis of yours that claimed that
          > > Jesus/Logos Christology is also evident in the other Gospels?
          >
          >[Frank]
          >I have made posts outlining evidence that Mark's Jesus is Philo's Logos
          >incarnate in the flesh as the Essenes' Branch of David (e.g., see the posts
          >of 7-25, 7-31, 8-2, and 8-5). In my last post to Loren, I point out
          >evidence that Jesus is Philo's Logos in the parable of the wise and foolish
          >virgins (from Matthew). I have pointed out in past posts that there is
          >evidence of a Logos christology in parts of Luke's infancy narrative....
          >The bottom line: Evidence of a Logos Christology can be found in all the
          >canonical gospel traditions and in the Thomas tradition as well. Thats a
          >lot of smoke spread through a goodly number of what might be independent
          >gospel traditions, so there's the possiblity, ISTM, of a fire, i.e., of an
          >underlying reality that the real Jesus did claim to be Philo's Logos
          >incarnate on earth.

          Frank,
          I apologize for not remembering that you had addressed these issues. It was
          careless of me not to check.


          > > >[Bob]
          > > > > But you are assuming what is to be proved. How do we really know
          > that they
          > > > > are *Philonic* ideas? It does not follow equally that if enough
          > ideas are
          > > > > *attributed* to Philonic thought, then does it really increase the
          > > > > probability that they actually were influenced by *Philonic*
          > thought (and
          > > > > not by some common tradition)?
          > > >
          >
          > > >[Frank]
          > > >I am assuming nothing. If an idea is present in Philonic thought, then it
          > > >is a Philonic idea. This is a no brainer.
          > >
          >[Bob]
          > > It is also not true. Suppose I write that I think democracy is a good
          > > thing. Does that mean that democracy is a Schacht idea? There is a big
          > > difference between an idea that crosses someone's mind, and an idea that is
          > > created by someone. The latter merits credit; the former scarcely matters.
          >
          >[Frank]
          >It's now clear to me that the term "Philonic idea" is ambigous, since you
          >and I have differing conceptualizations as to its meaning.
          >
          >Because the term "Philonic idea" is ambiguous I should not have used it in
          >past posts and I apologize to you and to the other X-talk listers for having
          >done so. In future posts, I will try to avoid this term and will try to
          >only speak of ideas held by Philo. Feel free to jump all over me if, in a
          >future post, I forget this and fall back on old ways!

          Thanks for your clarification! I think we understand each other better now.

          I would also like to take this opportunity to clarify what I meant when I wrote

          >I am sorry to point out that this is an oft-repeated tactic of
          >many crackpots, and I am loath to see you in their company. That is, they
          >propose some loony idea, and then assert that is the responsibility of
          >the *others* to prove them wrong. This is putting the shoe on the wrong
          >foot. It is *your* responsibility, not ours, to make the case that your
          >theory is stronger than rival hypotheses.

          I very much regret the tone of this statement. I did not mean to imply
          guilt by association, or that your ideas are "loony," or that you are some
          kind of crackpot. I meant only to draw attention to the tactic of claiming
          that a theory is to be assumed true until proven false, so that the "burden
          of proof," so to speak, falls not on the proposer of the theory, but on the
          proposer's audience (to disprove the claim). I appreciate the patience with
          which you marshall data in favor of your theories, even if I am reluctant
          to come to the same conclusions. And by our recent exchanges, I can see
          that you do not really appear to be claiming what I thought you were
          claiming, and appreciate your taking the time to set me straight. So
          perhaps our understanding is not as far apart as I had thought.

          Thanks,
          Bob


          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.