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Re: Kuchninsky's GThom dating argument

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  • Rick Hubbard
    The response of Y. Kuchinsky to my previous post deserves a much more thorough response than time or space allows, so I will therefore reply via a series of
    Message 1 of 10 , Jul 30, 2000
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      The response of Y. Kuchinsky to my previous post deserves a much more
      thorough response than time or space allows, so I will therefore reply
      via a series of posts, of which this is the first installment.

      On Mon, 24 Jul 2000, Rick Hubbard wrote:

      "The as-yet-unresolved problem of how to devise a defensible dating
      theory for the Gospel of Thomas moves no closer to denouement by simply
      adopting Loisy's hypotheses about the origin and development of the
      intracanonical gospels."

      To which Y. Kuchinsky replied:

      "Well, I beg to disagree, Rick."

      The absence of specifically stated reasons for disagreement, makes it is
      difficult to rebut this statement. Disagreement is a normal part of
      discourse, but it should be noted that it is both conventional and
      courteous to explain *why* one disagrees with another (even on this
      list).

      With that in mind, I can do nothing more than review the evidence upon
      which I based the conclusion that adopting Loisy's hypotheses about the
      origin and development of the intracanonical gospels contributes nothing
      to the dating of GThom.

      First, Loisy's central thesis is that the intracanonical gospels
      functioned as didactic instruments during the formative years of
      Christianity. They were, in other words, catechisms or manuals of
      instruction for Christian initiates (Birth, 43).

      Second, Loisy asserts that the catechesis of the gospels originated
      before the gospels themselves, i.e., in the teaching of the primitive
      church (Origins, 41).

      Third, Loisy unequivocally states that the earliest forms of the
      catechesis contained no reference to "the career and ministry of Jesus"
      and that "considerable time lapsed before it [the catechesis] included
      any record of the personal action and teaching of Jesus" (Origins, 43).

      Fourth, that which characterizes the catecheses imbedded in the gospels
      are the themes of baptism and eucharist, the former of which forms the
      cycle of preaching and deeds of Jesus and the latter of which forms the
      framework for the passion narrative (Birth, 43).

      Therefore, based on Loisy's premises, as summarized above, one should
      expect that the oldest strata of Christian literature would be replete
      with baptismal and eucharistic themes.

      If one applies those criteria to the content of GThom, then one must
      conclude that this document is quite late, since there is very little in
      its text that can be indisputably understood as either baptismal or
      eucharistic in character. The alternative to that conclusion, is of
      course that Loisy's assessment of the way the tradition developed is
      simply *wrong.* Since Loisy's approach stands in diametric opposition to
      the dominant contemporary arguments that the earliest strata of material
      in the gospels are indeed pre-Easter (i.e., a few authentic words of
      Jesus and memories about his deeds), then the more defensible conclusion
      would be that Loisy is completely "off the mark" (or more bluntly, he
      *is* wrong) and that a defensible dating theory for the Gospel of Thomas
      moves no closer to denouement by simply adopting his hypotheses about
      the origin and development of the intracanonical gospels."


      Rick Hubbard
      Humble Maine Woodsman
    • Yuri Kuchinsky
      ... I don t think I agree with this, Rick. In my view, the most logical picture of the earliest Jewish-Christian catechesis would have been as follows. Jesus
      Message 2 of 10 , Aug 2, 2000
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        On Sun, 30 Jul 2000, Rick Hubbard wrote:

        > On Mon, 24 Jul 2000, Rick Hubbard wrote:
        >
        > "The as-yet-unresolved problem of how to devise a defensible dating
        > theory for the Gospel of Thomas moves no closer to denouement by simply
        > adopting Loisy's hypotheses about the origin and development of the
        > intracanonical gospels."
        >
        > To which Y. Kuchinsky replied:
        >
        > "Well, I beg to disagree, Rick."
        >
        > The absence of specifically stated reasons for disagreement, makes it
        > is difficult to rebut this statement. Disagreement is a normal part of
        > discourse, but it should be noted that it is both conventional and
        > courteous to explain *why* one disagrees with another (even on this
        > list).
        >
        > With that in mind, I can do nothing more than review the evidence upon
        > which I based the conclusion that adopting Loisy's hypotheses about
        > the origin and development of the intracanonical gospels contributes
        > nothing to the dating of GThom.
        >
        > First, Loisy's central thesis is that the intracanonical gospels
        > functioned as didactic instruments during the formative years of
        > Christianity. They were, in other words, catechisms or manuals of
        > instruction for Christian initiates (Birth, 43).
        >
        > Second, Loisy asserts that the catechesis of the gospels originated
        > before the gospels themselves, i.e., in the teaching of the primitive
        > church (Origins, 41).
        >
        > Third, Loisy unequivocally states that the earliest forms of the
        > catechesis contained no reference to "the career and ministry of
        > Jesus" and that "considerable time lapsed before it [the catechesis]
        > included any record of the personal action and teaching of Jesus"
        > (Origins, 43).

        I don't think I agree with this, Rick. In my view, the most logical
        picture of the earliest Jewish-Christian catechesis would have been as
        follows.

        "Jesus was a remarkable man, very wise and righteous. He was the son of
        God, and he healed the sick, and performed many miracles. But the cruel
        and unjust authorities of our country arrested and killed him, just as
        they killed his teacher John before that. But then God his Father accepted
        Jesus into his bosom, and, as a reward for his righteousness, made his the
        Messiah of Israel. Jesus is alive, and he will come back soon in glory to
        judge the actions of all, and to usher in a New Age of God. Believe in
        Jesus, or you will never have life everlasting."

        All this is fully compatible with Judaism. But the Crucified Messiah of Mk
        is clearly a distortion of Judaism.

        I cannot check out your purported quotes from Loisy above, because it
        seems I have a different edition of this book. But somehow I don't think
        you've represented his views on this accurately. It is rather
        inconceivable to me that the earliest catechesis contained no references
        whatsoever to "the career and ministry of Jesus". Some such references
        must have been contained there.

        > Fourth, that which characterizes the catecheses imbedded in the
        > gospels are the themes of baptism and eucharist, the former of which
        > forms the cycle of preaching and deeds of Jesus and the latter of
        > which forms the framework for the passion narrative (Birth, 43).

        I'm now looking at page 43 in BIRTH (Allen and Unwin edition, 1948), but I
        don't think this is what is said there.

        Loisy does talk about "the baptismal catechism and the eucharistic". But I
        don't see your "the former of which forms the cycle of preaching and deeds
        of Jesus and the latter of which forms the framework for the passion
        narrative."

        According to Loisy, the earliest narrative was the passion narrative, and
        it was used in a liturgical setting.

        > Therefore, based on Loisy's premises, as summarized above, one should
        > expect that the oldest strata of Christian literature would be replete
        > with baptismal and eucharistic themes.

        Maybe so.

        > If one applies those criteria to the content of GThom, then one must
        > conclude that this document is quite late, since there is very little
        > in its text that can be indisputably understood as either baptismal or
        > eucharistic in character.

        Your "quite late" above can be variously interpreted. If we assume that
        the earliest Christian narrative was the passion narrative, then it may
        have emerged well before 70. The sayings traditions may have been
        formulated after the passion narrative, but they still can date also from
        before 70.

        > The alternative to that conclusion, is of course that Loisy's
        > assessment of the way the tradition developed is simply *wrong.* Since
        > Loisy's approach stands in diametric opposition to the dominant
        > contemporary arguments that the earliest strata of material in the
        > gospels are indeed pre-Easter

        But Loisy does not need to stand in opposition to that.

        > (i.e., a few authentic words of Jesus and memories about his deeds),

        Peter was there, so his memories of Jesus were certainly important for
        later Jewish-Christians post-Easter. I don't see why Loisy would stand in
        opposition to such a reasonable guess?

        > then the more defensible conclusion would be that Loisy is completely
        > "off the mark" (or more bluntly, he *is* wrong) and that a defensible
        > dating theory for the Gospel of Thomas moves no closer to denouement
        > by simply adopting his hypotheses about the origin and development of
        > the intracanonical gospels."

        Loisy proposed the view that the earliest gospels were
        Jewish-Christian. In other words, there was an early Jewish-Christian
        period of (proto) gospel production, before the Gentiles got on the
        act. But later, the newly dominant Gentiles re-edited and expanded these
        earlier proto-gospels to reflect their own biases, such as an anti-Judaic
        bias.

        Since GOT shows substantial signs of still being a Jewish-Christian
        gospel, on Loisy's theory it would probably date to the time prior to the
        canonical versions, which bear clear signs of the later Gentile take-over
        of the Christian movement. But GOT does not bear such clear signs of
        Gentile dominance.

        Regards,

        Yuri.

        Yuri Kuchinsky | Toronto | http://www.trends.ca/~yuku/bbl/bbl.htm

        Biblical history list http://www.egroups.com/group/loisy - unmoderated

        "Genuine ignorance is ... profitable because it is likely to be
        accompanied by humility, curiosity, and open mindedness; whereas ability
        to repeat catch-phrases, cant terms, familiar propositions, gives the
        conceit of learning, and coats the mind with varnish water-proof to new
        ideas" -- John Dewey
      • Andrew Smith
        ... It s compatible with Judaism because you made it up! ;- But if we accept this as a reconstruction of some sort, which parts of the Gospel of Thomas are in
        Message 3 of 10 , Aug 3, 2000
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          on 8/2/00 10:35 AM, Yuri Kuchinsky at yuku@... wrote:

          > In my view, the most logical
          > picture of the earliest Jewish-Christian catechesis would have been as
          > follows.
          >
          > "Jesus was a remarkable man, very wise and righteous. He was the son of
          > God, and he healed the sick, and performed many miracles. But the cruel
          > and unjust authorities of our country arrested and killed him, just as
          > they killed his teacher John before that. But then God his Father accepted
          > Jesus into his bosom, and, as a reward for his righteousness, made his the
          > Messiah of Israel. Jesus is alive, and he will come back soon in glory to
          > judge the actions of all, and to usher in a New Age of God. Believe in
          > Jesus, or you will never have life everlasting."
          >
          > All this is fully compatible with Judaism. But the Crucified Messiah of Mk
          > is clearly a distortion of Judaism.

          It's compatible with Judaism because you made it up! ;->

          But if we accept this as a reconstruction of some sort, which parts of the
          Gospel of Thomas are in line with this, since you are saying that the
          "Jewish" parts of the GoT are early? "Jesus is alive" is more or less
          Thomasine, but what else in your catechesis is compatible with GoT? Or, from
          another point of view, which are the parts of GoT that you think are Jewish
          and early?

          Best Wishes

          Andrew
        • Jim Bauer
          There s a book out that may prove helpful for this debate, Charles Foxworth s _Jesus within Judaism_. I didn t get a chance to read the whole thing so I can t
          Message 4 of 10 , Aug 3, 2000
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            There's a book out that may prove helpful for this debate, Charles
            Foxworth's _Jesus within Judaism_. I didn't get a chance to read the whole
            thing so I can't synopsize here but think it worthy of at least drawing it
            to the attention of the list members.

            Jim Bauer
            -----Original Message-----
            From: Andrew Smith <asmith@...>
            To: gthomas@egroups.com <gthomas@egroups.com>
            Date: Thursday, August 03, 2000 4:41 PM
            Subject: Re: [gthomas] Re: Kuchinsky's GThom dating argument


            >on 8/2/00 10:35 AM, Yuri Kuchinsky at yuku@... wrote:
            >
            >> In my view, the most logical
            >> picture of the earliest Jewish-Christian catechesis would have been as
            >> follows.
            >>
            >> "Jesus was a remarkable man, very wise and righteous. He was the son of
            >> God, and he healed the sick, and performed many miracles. But the cruel
            >> and unjust authorities of our country arrested and killed him, just as
            >> they killed his teacher John before that. But then God his Father
            accepted
            >> Jesus into his bosom, and, as a reward for his righteousness, made his
            the
            >> Messiah of Israel. Jesus is alive, and he will come back soon in glory to
            >> judge the actions of all, and to usher in a New Age of God. Believe in
            >> Jesus, or you will never have life everlasting."
            >>
            >> All this is fully compatible with Judaism. But the Crucified Messiah of
            Mk
            >> is clearly a distortion of Judaism.
            >
            >It's compatible with Judaism because you made it up! ;->
            >
            >But if we accept this as a reconstruction of some sort, which parts of the
            >Gospel of Thomas are in line with this, since you are saying that the
            >"Jewish" parts of the GoT are early? "Jesus is alive" is more or less
            >Thomasine, but what else in your catechesis is compatible with GoT? Or,
            from
            >another point of view, which are the parts of GoT that you think are Jewish
            >and early?
            >
            >Best Wishes
            >
            >Andrew
            >
            >
            >-------------------------------------------------
            >To post to gthomas, send email to gthomas@egroups.com
            >To unsubscribe, send a blank email to gthomas-unsubscribe@egroups.com
          • Rick Hubbard
            On Mon, 24 Jul 2000, Rick Hubbard wrote: The as-yet-unresolved problem of how to devise a defensible dating theory for the Gospel of Thomas moves no closer to
            Message 5 of 10 , Aug 4, 2000
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              On Mon, 24 Jul 2000, Rick Hubbard wrote:

              "The as-yet-unresolved problem of how to devise a defensible dating
              theory for the Gospel of Thomas moves no closer to denouement by simply
              adopting Loisy's hypotheses about the origin and development of the
              intracanonical gospels."

              To which Y. Kuchinsky replied:

              "Well, I beg to disagree, Rick."

              Rick Hubbard Responded:

              The absence of specifically stated reasons for disagreement, makes it is
              difficult to rebut this statement. Disagreement is a normal part of
              discourse, but it should be noted that it is both conventional and
              courteous to explain *why* one disagrees with another (even on this
              list).

              With that in mind, I can do nothing more than review the evidence upon
              which I based the conclusion that adopting Loisy's hypotheses about the
              origin and development of the intracanonical gospels contributes nothing
              to the dating of GThom.


              My apologies for not including the proper references to Loisy's work in
              my previous post. In order to rectify that oversight, I have included
              them below.

              (Birth) Loisy, Alfred F. _The Birth of the Christian Religion_. Tr L.P.
              Jacks. New York: Macmillan, 1950.

              (Origins) Loisy, Alfred F. _The Origins of the New Testament_. Tr L.P.
              Jacks. New York: MacMillan, 1950.

              In addition, I have also provided more extensive quotations from each
              work previously cited in order to illuminate more clearly what Loisy
              actually said. Hopefully, this will neutralize Kuchinsky's thinly veiled
              accusation that I falsified my citations or otherwise mis-represented
              what Loisy has written, ("...somehow I don't think you've represented
              his views on this accurately," and "I cannot check out your **purported
              quotes** [my emphasis]....").


              Rick Hubbard wrote on July 24, 2000:

              "First, Loisy's central thesis is that the intracanonical gospels
              functioned as didactic instruments during the formative years of
              Christianity. They were, in other words, catechisms or manuals of
              instruction for Christian initiates (Birth, 43)."

              To expand on this comment, Loisy's precise words on page 43 are as
              follows:

              "The Gospels when closely examined are far less the echoes of a
              tradition zealous to keep intact the memories of Jesus than a didactic
              instrument, we might even say a catechism of the worship rendered to the
              Lord Christ.... Two cycles are, or centres, are discernable, the cycle
              of the preaching in Galilee and the cycle of the passion in Jerusalem;
              the instruction of catechumens and the revelation of a mystery; the
              bapstismal catechism and the eucharistic [catechism]."

              Rick Hubbard also wrote on July 24, 2000:

              "Second, Loisy asserts that the catechesis of the gospels originated
              before the gospels themselves, i.e., in the teaching of the primitive
              church (Origins, 41)."

              Again, to amplify this citation, Loisy's words on page 41 read:

              "This profession of faith was all gathered up as it were in one word,
              'Maranatha'- '"the Lord comes,"' is on the point of coming (cf. I
              Corinthians xvi, 22). From First Corinthians (i,12-15) it results quite
              clearly that the above profession of faith in Romans [Rom 10:9-10], *in
              which the earliest catechetical teaching was summarized* [my emphasis],
              was the profession of catechumens at baptism..."

              Rick Hubbard wrote on July 24, 2000:

              "Third, Loisy unequivocally states that the earliest forms of the
              catechesis contained no reference to "the career and ministry of Jesus"
              and that "considerable time lapsed before it [the catechesis] included
              any record of the personal action and teaching of Jesus" (Origins, 43)."

              Loisy's exact words on page 43 read:

              "There is therefore no difficulty in obtaining a clear idea of of
              Christian catechetical teaching in its primitive form. *The career and
              ministry of Jesus had no place in it;* [my emphasis] .... While the
              first form of the catechesis is thus clearly defined, documentary
              evidence is defective as to the detail of the of its evolution to the
              form which followed. *It seems, however, that a considerable course of
              time elapsed before it included any record of the personal action and
              teaching of Jesus..."

              Finally on July 24, 2000 Rick Hubbard wrote:

              Fourth, that which characterizes the catecheses imbedded in the
              gospels are the themes of baptism and eucharist, the former of which
              forms the cycle of preaching and deeds of Jesus and the latter of which
              forms the framework for the passion narrative (Birth, 43).

              To which Y. Kuchinsky replied on August 2, 2000:

              "I'm now looking at page 43 in BIRTH (Allen and Unwin edition, 1948),
              but I don't think this is what is said there."

              It should be noted that the Allen and Unwin 1948 edition to which
              Kuchinsky refers is not the same as the one from which I quote, so there
              is a possibility that the pagination is different. In any case, however,
              the edition which I cite contains these exact words of Loisy on page 43
              (also cited above in support of my first point):

              "The Gospels when closely examined are far less the echoes of a
              tradition zealous to keep intact the memories of Jesus than a didactic
              instrument, we might even say a catechism of the worship rendered to the
              Lord Christ.... Two cycles are, or centres, are discernable, the cycle
              of the preaching in Galilee and the cycle of the passion in
              Jerusalem;.."

              Hopefully this clarifies precisely what Loisy *did* write and that I am
              thereby absolved from being guilty of fabricating citations or
              misrepresenting what that author wrote.

              It seems likely that Kuchinsky and I will remain in disagreement about
              whether Loisy can make a substantial contribution to determining the
              date of composition of GThom. On the one hand, I am unpersuaded by
              Kuchinsky's undocumented opinions while he remains unconvinced that I
              have accurately represented what Loisy wrote (as well as, apparently, my
              own integrity).

              It seems therefore that this discussion should be concluded simply by
              repeating, once again, my original assertion from July 24, 2000:

              "The as-yet-unresolved problem of how to devise a defensible dating
              theory for the Gospel of Thomas moves no closer to denouement by simply
              adopting Loisy's hypotheses about the origin and development of the
              intracanonical gospels."

              Rick Hubbard
              Humble Maine Woodsman
            • Yuri Kuchinsky
              ... No way, Andrew! In fact, this was my rock-solid and completely objective reconstruction of what I ve found in the earliest texts! :) ... Of the most
              Message 6 of 10 , Aug 4, 2000
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                On Thu, 3 Aug 2000, Andrew Smith wrote:
                > on 8/2/00 10:35 AM, Yuri Kuchinsky at yuku@... wrote:
                >
                > > In my view, the most logical
                > > picture of the earliest Jewish-Christian catechesis would have been as
                > > follows.
                > >
                > > "Jesus was a remarkable man, very wise and righteous. He was the son of
                > > God, and he healed the sick, and performed many miracles. But the cruel
                > > and unjust authorities of our country arrested and killed him, just as
                > > they killed his teacher John before that. But then God his Father accepted
                > > Jesus into his bosom, and, as a reward for his righteousness, made his the
                > > Messiah of Israel. Jesus is alive, and he will come back soon in glory to
                > > judge the actions of all, and to usher in a New Age of God. Believe in
                > > Jesus, or you will never have life everlasting."
                > >
                > > All this is fully compatible with Judaism. But the Crucified Messiah of Mk
                > > is clearly a distortion of Judaism.
                >
                > It's compatible with Judaism because you made it up! ;->

                No way, Andrew!

                In fact, this was my rock-solid and completely objective reconstruction of
                what I've found in the earliest texts! :)

                > But if we accept this as a reconstruction of some sort,

                Of the most reasonable sort...

                > which parts of the Gospel of Thomas are in line with this, since you
                > are saying that the "Jewish" parts of the GoT are early?

                I'm saying that GOT as a whole is a Jewish-Christian document.

                > "Jesus is alive" is more or less Thomasine, but what else in your
                > catechesis is compatible with GoT?

                I'm saying that the earliest catechesis did not involve any document such
                as GOT. So this came later, but still earlier than all the Gentile stuff
                that went into the Synoptics.

                > Or, from another point of view, which are the parts of GoT that you
                > think are Jewish and early?

                Take a look e.g. at saying #27 which talks about fasting and keeping the
                Sabbath favourably.

                BTW I said nothing about stratification of GOT so far. Sure, such a
                stratification would be a legitimate and useful exercise, and a number of
                attempts have been made already. In my view, these sayings that look most
                like "gnostic" would probably be a late stratum.

                But this is a different subject from what we've been discussing so far. My
                main point so far is that we should look at GOT _as a whole_, and see it
                as basically a Jewish-Christian document that, unlike the canonicals,
                lacks any obvious late Gentile editorial intrusions. For example, the
                original disciples are not bad-mouthed continously like they are in the
                canonicals. Thus, redactionally, as a whole, GOT should be dated previous
                to all three Synoptics.

                Also, in regard to what Jim Bauer said, the book that he meant was
                probably James H. Charlesworth, "Jesus within Judaism". There are quite a
                few webpages mentioning it, and providing quotes.

                Regards,

                Yuri.

                Yuri Kuchinsky -=O=- http://www.trends.ca/~yuku -=O=- Toronto

                But scientists, who ought to know
                Assure us that it must be so.
                Oh, let us never, never doubt
                What nobody is sure about.
                -- Hilaire Belloc
              • Andrew Smith
                ... Here s your catechesis again. I ve divided it into sections. 1. Jesus was a remarkable man, very wise and righteous. 2.He was the son of God, 3. and he
                Message 7 of 10 , Aug 4, 2000
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                  on 8/4/00 10:05 AM, Yuri Kuchinsky at yuku@... wrote:

                  >> "Jesus is alive" is more or less Thomasine, but what else in your
                  >> catechesis is compatible with GoT?
                  >
                  > I'm saying that the earliest catechesis did not involve any document such
                  > as GOT. So this came later, but still earlier than all the Gentile stuff
                  > that went into the Synoptics.

                  Here's your catechesis again. I've divided it into sections.

                  "

                  1. Jesus was a remarkable man, very wise and righteous.

                  2.He was the son of God,

                  3. and he healed the sick, and performed many miracles.

                  4. But the cruel and unjust authorities of our country arrested and killed
                  him, just as they killed his teacher John before that.

                  5. But then God his Father accepted Jesus into his bosom, and, as a reward
                  for his righteousness, made his the Messiah of Israel.

                  6. Jesus is alive, and he will come back soon in glory to
                  judge the actions of all, and to usher in a New Age of God.

                  7.Believe in Jesus, or you will never have life everlasting."

                  If this is typical of early Christianity, as you propose, surely GThomas is
                  very different to this. Which Thomas sayings or motifs are in line with the
                  various points of your catechesis? You could just insert the numbers of the
                  logia next to the parts of your catechesis, with a couple of comments.
                  Otherwise, why is Thomas so different to this?

                  Andrew
                • Ronald David McCann
                  I am getting lost here. I have read your debates since last october and frankly they usually blow me away. I have loved Joe s injections into the fray because
                  Message 8 of 10 , Aug 5, 2000
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                    I am getting lost here. I have read your debates since last october and
                    frankly they usually blow me away. I have loved Joe's injections into the
                    fray because they inject some "horse sense":

                    But I just don't understand this last exchange. How can anybody
                    debate if
                    Jesus was Jewish? Is everything up for debate in moderm scholarship?

                    There are "lurkers" who watch your exchanges with great interest. Youu
                    guys are always "On stage". Remember that. And Remember we are not as
                    bright as you are. But we are still interested

                    Ron
                    On Thu, 3 Aug 2000, Andrew Smith wrote:

                    > on 8/2/00 10:35 AM, Yuri Kuchinsky at yuku@... wrote:
                    >
                    > > In my view, the most logical
                    > > picture of the earliest Jewish-Christian catechesis would have been as
                    > > follows.
                    > >
                    > > "Jesus was a remarkable man, very wise and righteous. He was the son of
                    > > God, and he healed the sick, and performed many miracles. But the cruel
                    > > and unjust authorities of our country arrested and killed him, just as
                    > > they killed his teacher John before that. But then God his Father accepted
                    > > Jesus into his bosom, and, as a reward for his righteousness, made his the
                    > > Messiah of Israel. Jesus is alive, and he will come back soon in glory to
                    > > judge the actions of all, and to usher in a New Age of God. Believe in
                    > > Jesus, or you will never have life everlasting."
                    > >
                    > > All this is fully compatible with Judaism. But the Crucified Messiah of Mk
                    > > is clearly a distortion of Judaism.
                    >
                    > It's compatible with Judaism because you made it up! ;->
                    >
                    > But if we accept this as a reconstruction of some sort, which parts of the
                    > Gospel of Thomas are in line with this, since you are saying that the
                    > "Jewish" parts of the GoT are early? "Jesus is alive" is more or less
                    > Thomasine, but what else in your catechesis is compatible with GoT? Or, from
                    > another point of view, which are the parts of GoT that you think are Jewish
                    > and early?
                    >
                    > Best Wishes
                    >
                    > Andrew
                    >
                    >
                    > -------------------------------------------------
                    > To post to gthomas, send email to gthomas@egroups.com
                    > To unsubscribe, send a blank email to gthomas-unsubscribe@egroups.com
                    >
                  • Rick Hubbard
                    ... Your post raises some some interesting points which deserve response. First, while it does seem that everything is up for debate in contemporary
                    Message 9 of 10 , Aug 7, 2000
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                      Ronald David McCann wrote:
                      >
                      > I am getting lost here. I have read your debates since last october and
                      > frankly they usually blow me away. I have loved Joe's injections into the
                      > fray because they inject some "horse sense":
                      >
                      > But I just don't understand this last exchange. How can anybody
                      > debate if
                      > Jesus was Jewish? Is everything up for debate in moderm scholarship?

                      Your post raises some some interesting points which deserve response.

                      First, while it does seem that everything is "up for debate" in
                      contemporary scholarship, some things are not *seriously* debatable
                      because either those things have been unanimously accepted as "the most
                      assured results of scholarship" or because there is insufficient
                      empirical evidence about which legitimate debate can revolve (in other
                      words, there are simply some things we would like to know about, but
                      which we cannot because there is no evidence on which to base defensible
                      conclusions).

                      Second, it is often difficult for non specialists to identify (on this
                      list) those topics which are *seriously debateable* because a good deal
                      of the discussion on this list occurs between folks who are not
                      themselves specialists, but who are under-informed about the topic over
                      which they argue. Those folks seem to fall naturally into two groups:
                      those are are aware that they do not know everything about the subject
                      which they discuss, and at the opposite end of the spectrum, those who
                      imagine that they do. Within that latter group, is a subset of people
                      who not only imagine that they are sufficiently informed to be able to
                      argue cogently, but who also insist that their insight is so keen that
                      their very assertions are to be accepted without question. The challenge
                      for those who are content to "listen in" on the list, is to determine
                      who is credible and who is not.

                      With respect to the "Jewishness of Jesus," that seems to be one of those
                      topics about which there is a good deal of certainty in mainstream
                      scholarship. But that relative certainty does not preclude debate on the
                      issue. On one hand some dispute his "Jewishness" because to accept that
                      conclusion would somehow interfere with their own assumptions or
                      eccentric indulgences. Others, as I suggested, debate the issue simply
                      because they are uninformed about the strength of the evidence which
                      suggest that he *was* Jewish.

                      Your observation that "you are all on-stage" is sobering. Sometimes we
                      forget (or at least I forget) that the number of people who participate
                      in discussions on this list represent only a fraction of the total
                      subscribers. For that reason alone, those who post here would be well
                      advised to put forward their best, and to refrain from the sort of
                      misbehavior that reflects badly on everyone else. Argument by assertion,
                      for example, is an anathema. Usually (depending of course on the person
                      involved and the circumstance), such representations automatically
                      disqualify their own credibility and cast upon the one who made the
                      assertion a cloud of suspicion about the veracity of all else the person
                      says elsewhere.

                      In any case, hang in there and always feel free to ask for
                      clarifications!

                      Rick Hubbard
                      Humble Maine Woodsman




                      >
                      > There are "lurkers" who watch your exchanges with great interest. Youu
                      > guys are always "On stage". Remember that. And Remember we are not as
                      > bright as you are. But we are still interested
                      >
                      > Ron
                      > On Thu, 3 Aug 2000, Andrew Smith wrote:
                      >
                      > > on 8/2/00 10:35 AM, Yuri Kuchinsky at yuku@... wrote:
                      > >
                      > > > In my view, the most logical
                      > > > picture of the earliest Jewish-Christian catechesis would have been as
                      > > > follows.
                      > > >
                      > > > "Jesus was a remarkable man, very wise and righteous. He was the son of
                      > > > God, and he healed the sick, and performed many miracles. But the cruel
                      > > > and unjust authorities of our country arrested and killed him, just as
                      > > > they killed his teacher John before that. But then God his Father accepted
                      > > > Jesus into his bosom, and, as a reward for his righteousness, made his the
                      > > > Messiah of Israel. Jesus is alive, and he will come back soon in glory to
                      > > > judge the actions of all, and to usher in a New Age of God. Believe in
                      > > > Jesus, or you will never have life everlasting."
                      > > >
                      > > > All this is fully compatible with Judaism. But the Crucified Messiah of Mk
                      > > > is clearly a distortion of Judaism.
                      > >
                      > > It's compatible with Judaism because you made it up! ;->
                      > >
                      > > But if we accept this as a reconstruction of some sort, which parts of the
                      > > Gospel of Thomas are in line with this, since you are saying that the
                      > > "Jewish" parts of the GoT are early? "Jesus is alive" is more or less
                      > > Thomasine, but what else in your catechesis is compatible with GoT? Or, from
                      > > another point of view, which are the parts of GoT that you think are Jewish
                      > > and early?
                      > >
                      > > Best Wishes
                      > >
                      > > Andrew
                      > >
                      > >
                      > > -------------------------------------------------
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                      > > To unsubscribe, send a blank email to gthomas-unsubscribe@egroups.com
                      > >
                      >
                      > -------------------------------------------------
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                    • Isidoros
                      ... Not unlike, let us say, of the certainty in mainstream scholarship of the Catholic Middle Ages, say, about the relative movement and the positions of the
                      Message 10 of 10 , Aug 22, 2000
                      • 0 Attachment
                        To "lost" Donald David McCann's:

                        > > I am getting lost here [...] I just don't understand this last exchange.
                        > > How can anybody debate if Jesus was Jewish?
                        > > Is everything up for debate in moderm scholarship?

                        offered Rick Hubbard, on 7 Aug 2000:

                        >With respect to the "Jewishness of Jesus," that seems to be one of those
                        >topics about which there is a good deal of certainty in mainstream
                        >scholarship.

                        Not unlike, let us say, of the "certainty in mainstream scholarship"
                        of the Catholic Middle Ages, say, about the relative movement and
                        the positions of the Sun and Gaia and of the planets. Ask Galileo Galilei.


                        >But that relative certainty does not preclude debate on the
                        >issue. On one hand some dispute his "Jewishness" because to accept that
                        >conclusion would somehow interfere with their own assumptions or
                        >eccentric indulgences. Others, as I suggested, debate the issue simply
                        >because they are uninformed about the strength of the evidence which
                        >suggest that he *was* Jewish.

                        You don't say! Two possibilities, neatly taking care the all. How
                        wonderfully simple, and all exhaustive are the two solutions,
                        and how easily disposing of the"uninformed" "debaters". So didactic.

                        >In any case, hang in there and always feel free to ask for
                        >clarifications!

                        Isidoros,
                        who apologizes here (too) for the lateness to re-enter the fray-- and,
                        remembers, especially in lieu of the above offered "clarifications",
                        that has indeed asked for a certain "definitions" ("please" he pleaded)
                        before long. Yet, all one continues to read are the same "historical
                        suppositions". This 2000 years o()d debate goes on in part because
                        people will not question the "given".
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