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7194Re: [GTh] Recovering Thomas

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  • andrewcriddle
    Jul 21, 2006
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      --- In gthomas@yahoogroups.com, "Judy Redman" <jredman@...> wrote:
      >
      >
      > If Thomas is potentially based on a paraphrase of Matthew and/or
      an early
      > Greek synoptic harmony, what do you make of what would then be a
      radical
      > re-ordering of the text by Thomas? For example, all of the Thomas
      parables
      > of the Realm/Kingdom that have synoptic parallels that are also
      Realm
      > parables appear in Matthew 13, in vv 24-33 and 44-48 (separated by
      a passage
      > about the use of parables). In Thomas they are sayings 8, 20, 57,
      76, 96
      > and 109.
      >
      > I'm not prepared to commit myself about whether or not the Thomas
      sayings
      > are more primitive than their Synoptic parallels, but it would
      seem to me
      > strange that an author would take a nice, neat, thematic package
      like this
      > one and pull it apart in such a fashion. It would, I think, be
      particularly
      > strange if Thomas were based on a paraphrase of Matthew. I
      suppose the
      > ordering in a Synoptic harmony would depend on which of the
      Synoptics the
      > author chose to take as the primary one, but most of the Realm
      parables
      > don't have parallels in Mark and Luke, so it would probably make
      sense to
      > keep them together. The only one that appears in Mark and Luke is
      the
      > mustard seed.
      >
      > This kind of thing speaks to me more of a shared common source
      than of one
      > being derived from the other, even through an intermediate
      source. Another
      > possibility would be that each derived from oral traditions
      stemming from
      > different eyewitness accounts. If we assume that Jesus told his
      stories
      > more than once (and why would you waste a good story by only using
      it once
      > if you were moving around?), then people who heard him in one
      place might
      > well have slightly different versions of stories to pass on in
      signficantly
      > different orders because that was they way Jesus told them when
      they heard
      > them.
      >
      > Judy
      >
      Hi Judy

      We know that a good deal of rearrangement of the order of Jesus'
      sayings occurred in the formation of the Gospels.

      Those who believe in Q usually hold that Matthew drastically
      rearranged the order of sayings in Q for his own purposes.

      Those who dispense with Q hold that Luke drastically rearranged
      the order of sayings in Matthew for his own purposes.

      If your concern is that the order of sayings in Thomas is less
      structured than in the canonical Gospels then DeConick has an
      interesting analysis of the structure of the Thomas kernel which
      she sees as arranged in 5 sermons (sermon 1 eschatological urgency
      sermon 2 discipleship sermon 3 committal to Jesus sermon 4 selection
      of the elect sermon 5 the kingdom's imminence)These sermons in some
      ways repeat the same material with a different emphasis Of the 6
      kingdom parables you mentioned one occurs in each of the first four
      sermons and two in the fifth. (I'm a bit uneasy saying this because
      it is not clear whether saying 8 the fisherman parable is a kingdom
      poarable IN THOMAS)

      There is also Perrin's interesting analysis in 'Thomas and Tatian'
      about how the order of the sayings in Thomas is determined by using
      catchwords in Syriac.

      My personal suspicion is that DeConick is over confident in assuming
      that the order of the sayings in the Thomas kernel can be determined
      from their order in existing Thomas. It is possible that the order
      of sayings within Thomas was very fluid in the early stages of
      Thomas' development and only achieved fixity in the late stages.

      Andrew Criddle
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