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

Re: [GTh] Re: GTh 20: The Parable of the Mustard Seed and GTh 21:The Parable of the Children in the Field

Expand Messages
  • FMMCCOY
    Let us look at GTh 20, The disciples said to Jesus, Tell us what the Kingdom of God is like. He said to them, It is like a mustard seed, the smallest of
    Message 1 of 9 , Jun 3, 2001
    • 0 Attachment
      Let us look at GTh 20, "The disciples said to Jesus, 'Tell us what the
      Kingdom of God is like.' He said to them, 'It is like a mustard seed, the
      smallest of all seeds. But when it falls on tilled soil, it produces a
      great plant and becomes a shelter for birds of the sky."
      In several posts, the first on May 17th, I interpret this parable to
      mean this: The Kingdom of God is the Spirit-Sophia. The mustard seed is
      one of the words/virtues that are of her very self. From this one
      word/virtue of her very self sown in a human soul she can grow into herself
      as a spiritual plant in her complete fulness as the heavenly home of
      souls--who are symbolized by the birds.
      In one of these posts, dated May 23rd, I suggest that the Markan version
      of this parable is more original. It is found in Mark 14:30-32 and reads,
      "To what shall we liken the Kingdom of God? Or, with what parable shall we
      compare it? (It is) as to a grain of mustard, which, when it has been sown
      upon the earth, is less than all the seeds which are upon the earth. and
      when it has been sown, it grows up and becomes greater than all the herbs
      and produces great branches, so that the birds of heaven are able to roost
      under its shadow."
      In Theology of the New Testament (p.8), Rudolph Bultmann notes that this
      parable is related to a parable about the hailstone which can cause great
      pain--which parable is found in the Shepherd of Hermas (Mandate XI, 43,
      20-21). It reads, "Take now the power which comes from above. The
      hailstone is a very small pellet, but when it falls on a man's head, what a
      pain it causes! Or again, take a drop that falls on the ground from the
      roof and makes a hole in stone. You see then that when they fall on the
      earth, even the smallest things from above have great power. So the divine
      Spirit which also comes from above is powerful."
      That these parables are related makes it likely that they regard the same
      topic. Therefore, that the hailstone is explicitly identified as being the
      Spirit is evidence supporting the idea that the mustard seed that grows up
      into the greatest plant is, indeed, the Spirit-Sophia!
      In the History of the Synoptic Tradition (p. 172), Rudolph Bultmann puts
      this parable under the category of similitudes and he notes that there is a
      Q version of it as well. He also notes that "both Mark and Q preface it
      with a double question,..". This double attestation that Jesus prefaced the
      parable with a double question suggests that the double question by Jesus is
      original and that, therefore, the Thomas version is less original in this
      respect because it lacks the double question by Jesus.
      In Thomas and the Evangelists (p. 70), Hugh Montefiore and H.E.W. Turner
      state, "It is noteworthy that Thomas on two occasions groups parables which
      have their counterpart in the Synoptic Gospels with hitherto unknown
      parables. In Thomas 84.26-83.6 the Parable of the Mustard Seed precedes the
      Parable of the Children in the Field." This raises the question: "What is
      there about the Parable of the Mustard Seed that led the author of GTh to
      link it to the Parable of the Children in the Field?"
      There is an answer to this question *if*, as I suggest, the birds in the
      Parable of the Mustard Seed are souls residing in the Spirit-Sophia as the
      heavenly abode. In order to demonstrate this, it is, first of all,
      necessary to look at the Parable of the Children in the Field.
      This parable is found in GTh 21, "They (i.e., my disciples) are like
      children who have settled in a field which is not theirs. When the owners
      of the field come, they will say, 'Let us have back our field.' They will
      undress in their presence in order to let them have back their field and
      give it back to them."
      In terms of Philonic thought, the field can be the Cosmos. So, in Plant
      28, Philo speaks of "the field of the Cosmos". The children who settle in
      this "field", but do not hold it to be their own, are souls of the wise who
      pre-existed in the Spirit-Sophia as the heavenly abode; while the owners of
      the field are the children of the soil who honor the body more than the
      soul. So, in Conf. 78-81, Philo states, "To them (i.e., the wise), the
      heavenly region, where their citizenship lies, is their native land; the
      earthly region in which they became sojourners is a foreign country....We
      shall not be surprised, then, to find Abraham, when he rose from the life of
      death and vanity, saying to the guardians of the dead and stewards of
      mortality, 'I am a stranger and sojourner with you' (Gen. xxiii.4). 'You,'
      he means 'are children of the soil who honor the dust and clay before the
      soul"....Isaac, too, the self-taught had an oracle vouchsafed to him thus,
      'Go not down into Egypt,' that is passion, ' but dwell in the land which I
      say to thee' (that is in the Sophia which has no material body, and none can
      shew it to another), 'and sojourn in this land' (Gen. xxvi. 2, 3), that is
      in the form of existence which may be shewn and is perceived by the senses."
      As for the clothes that the "children (i.e., the souls of the wise)" discard
      and hand over to the owners of the field (i.e., the "children of the soil"
      who honor material things and the body more than the soul), these are all
      their worldly possessions. So, in Mut 32, Philo states, "Moses teaches us
      here by implication the doctrine which he so often lays down that God is the
      maker of the wise and good only. And all in that company have voluntarily
      stripped themselves of the external goods which are so abundantly supplied
      to us, and further have despised what is dear to the flesh."
      So, in terms of Philonic thought, the Parable of the Children in the
      Field relates how Jesus' disciples belong to the wise. That is to say, they
      are souls who pre-existed in the Spirit-Sophia as the heavenly abode. They
      have come to this world as sojourners and, so, do not regard it as their
      own. Further, to emphasise that they do not regard the world as their own
      and to concede that it is the realm owned by the children of soil, who value

      material things and the body more than the soul, they have stripped
      themselves of all their material possessions and given them to these
      children of the soil.
      Compare Mark 10:28, "Peter began to say to him, 'Lo, we have left everything
      and followed
      you." (RSV).
      Seen in this light, the Parable of the Children in the Field is a
      logical follow-up to the Parable of the Mustard Seed *if* (as I suggest) it
      ends with the vision of "birds (i.e., souls)" residing in the "plant" of the
      Spirit-Sophia in her role as the heavenly abode--for, in this case, the
      Parable of the Children of the Field relates how some of these souls whose
      home is the heavenly abode of the Spirit-Sophia have come down to earth as
      his disciples to temporarily sojourn here in this earthly plane with him
      while stripped of all their material possessions.

      Frank McCoy
      Maplewood, MN USA
    • Michael Grondin
      ... I have very serious reservations about this line of reasoning. In the first place, I note that MATTHEW doesn t have a double question, so how is it
      Message 2 of 9 , Jun 3, 2001
      • 0 Attachment
        Frank McCoy wrote:
        > In the History of the Synoptic Tradition (p. 172), Rudolph Bultmann puts
        >this parable under the category of similitudes and he notes that there is a
        >Q version of it as well. He also notes that "both Mark and Q preface it
        >with a double question,..". This double attestation that Jesus prefaced the
        >parable with a double question suggests that the double question by Jesus is
        >original and that, therefore, the Thomas version is less original in this
        >respect because it lacks the double question by Jesus.

        I have very serious reservations about this line of reasoning. In the first
        place, I note that MATTHEW doesn't have a double question, so how is it
        justified to claim that Q has a double question? I suspect that the answer
        will be that, in general, when Matt and Luke differ with respect to Q
        material, then Luke is more likely to be accurate. But that raises another
        question, namely, is the mustard parable properly Q material? Since it's
        found in Mark, it's an open question at the outset as to whether Luke and
        Matt found it in BOTH Mark and Q, or just in Mark alone. What usually
        decides that question in similar cases, I assume, is that if the language
        of Luke and Matt is significantly more similar to each other than to Mark,
        then the material was likely present in Q as well as Mark. But a close
        examination of the wording in GMt and GLk indicates quite a few differences
        between them - differences which can, it seems to this reader, be equally
        well explained by their taking the parable from Mark as by their taking it
        from Q. So I suggest that the case is not strong that the mustard seed
        belongs in Q. But if this is so, then Luke got the double question thingy
        from Mark, not Q, and it's not doubly-attested. But if not doubly-attested,
        then it can't be established that "the Thomas version is less original" on
        those grounds. One could argue, I think, that the double question is an
        Aramaicism, and hence more likely to be original for THAT reason, but the
        double-attestation argument strikes me as flimsy.

        Regards,
        Mike
      • Rick Hubbard
        If I understand what you are driving at in your most recent post it is that: A. The Kingdom of God is the Spirit-Sophia. B. The version of the mustard seed
        Message 3 of 9 , Jun 3, 2001
        • 0 Attachment
          If I understand what you are driving at in your most recent post it is
          that:

          A. The Kingdom of God is the Spirit-Sophia.
          B. The version of the mustard seed parable in Mk is the most original.


          If you are attempting to invoke Bultmann as an ally in these two
          arguments you have gotten a traitor instead. He fails to support you
          on either point.

          [Regarding the meaning of the parable of the mustard seed Frank
          wrote:]

          In Theology of the New Testament (p.8), Rudolph Bultmann notes that
          this
          parable is related to a parable about the hailstone which can cause
          great
          pain--which parable is found in the Shepherd of Hermas (Mandate XI,
          43,
          20-21).

          This is not what Bultmann wrote at all Here is the precise and full
          quotation which differs considerably from what you say):

          "...the related parables in the Shepherd of Hermas (Mand. V 1, 5f;
          [AND] XI 20f.) about the drop of wormwood which makes a whole jug of
          honey bitter AND [my emphasis] about the hailstone which can cause
          great pain, have an entirely different meaning. The former [about the
          wormwood] intends to illustrate how practice in patience is brought to
          nought by an attack of wrath; the latter illustrate the power of the
          Holy Spirit. So it might be that the parable of the mustard seed and
          the leaven originally dealt with the individual and were intended to
          instruct him {sic], either as a warning or as a consolation, how a
          great result may grow out of small beginnings."

          This directly contradicts what you write here:

          That these parables are related makes it likely that they regard
          the same
          topic. Therefore, that the hailstone is explicitly identified as
          being the
          Spirit is evidence supporting the idea that the mustard seed that
          grows up
          into the greatest plant is, indeed, the Spirit-Sophia!

          [regarding the "originality" of Mark's version of the mustard seed
          parable Frank wrote:]

          In the History of the Synoptic Tradition (p. 172), Rudolph Bultmann
          puts
          this parable under the category of similitudes and he notes that there
          is a
          Q version of it as well. He also notes that "both Mark and Q preface
          it
          with a double question,..". This double attestation that Jesus
          prefaced the
          parable with a double question suggests that the double question by
          Jesus is
          original and that, therefore, the Thomas version is less original in
          this
          respect because it lacks the double question by Jesus.

          The second sentence above is again a misrepresentation of Bultmann's
          position. Here is what he actually says:

          "Luke substantially reproduces the similtude from Q, while Matthew
          combines Q's text with Mark. Both Mark and Q preface it with a double
          question, the parable then following with hWS (or in Luke hOMIA
          ESTIN)."

          The content of the similtude here is not the entirety of Mk 4:30-32.
          That to which Bultmann refers is the direct discourse of 4:31-32. 4:30
          is editorial material according to Bultmann's principle that, "As a
          rule, the expansion which any saying undergoes at its beginning
          derives from its context" (history, 91). "Context" here is a euphemism
          for what Bultmann calls the "productivity" of the church and which the
          JS calls "The Story Seller's License (T5g, 29).

          But in any case, whether Mark's version represents an earlier
          "version" of the mustard seed parable than that of Q or Lk (or Mt), it
          has not been demonstrated by this particular argument. More
          importantly there is still no defensible argument that the Kingdom
          (here or anywhere else) refers to the Pneuma-Sophia complex.

          Rick Hubbard
          Humble Maine Woodsman
        • FMMCCOY
          ... From: Rick Hubbard To: Sent: Sunday, June 03, 2001 4:32 PM Subject: RE: [GTh] Re: GTh 20: The Parable
          Message 4 of 9 , Jun 5, 2001
          • 0 Attachment
            ----- Original Message -----
            From: "Rick Hubbard" <rhubbard@...>
            To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
            Sent: Sunday, June 03, 2001 4:32 PM
            Subject: RE: [GTh] Re: GTh 20: The Parable of the Mustard Seed and GTh
            21:The Parable of the Children in the Field


            > If I understand what you are driving at in your most recent post it is
            > that:
            >
            > A. The Kingdom of God is the Spirit-Sophia.
            > B. The version of the mustard seed parable in Mk is the most original.
            >
            >
            > If you are attempting to invoke Bultmann as an ally in these two
            > arguments you have gotten a traitor instead. He fails to support you
            > on either point.
            >
            > [Regarding the meaning of the parable of the mustard seed Frank
            > wrote:]
            >
            > In Theology of the New Testament (p.8), Rudolph Bultmann notes that
            > this
            > parable is related to a parable about the hailstone which can cause
            > great
            > pain--which parable is found in the Shepherd of Hermas (Mandate XI,
            > 43,
            > 20-21).
            >
            > This is not what Bultmann wrote at all Here is the precise and full
            > quotation which differs considerably from what you say):
            >
            > "...the related parables in the Shepherd of Hermas (Mand. V 1, 5f;
            > [AND] XI 20f.) about the drop of wormwood which makes a whole jug of
            > honey bitter AND [my emphasis] about the hailstone which can cause
            > great pain, have an entirely different meaning. The former [about the
            > wormwood] intends to illustrate how practice in patience is brought to
            > nought by an attack of wrath; the latter illustrate the power of the
            > Holy Spirit. So it might be that the parable of the mustard seed and
            > the leaven originally dealt with the individual and were intended to
            > instruct him {sic], either as a warning or as a consolation, how a
            > great result may grow out of small beginnings."
            >
            Dear Rick Hubbard:

            As can be seen from the passage you quote, Bultmann does say that that they
            are "related". Hence, in my statement, "In Theology of the New Testament
            (p.8), Rudolph Bultmann notes that this parable is related to a parable
            about the hailstone which can cause great pain", I accurately portray what
            he writes..

            You continue:
            > This directly contradicts what you write here:
            >
            > That these parables are related makes it likely that they regard
            > the same
            > topic. Therefore, that the hailstone is explicitly identified as
            > being the
            > Spirit is evidence supporting the idea that the mustard seed that
            > grows up
            > into the greatest plant is, indeed, the Spirit-Sophia!
            >
            Rick, this is my own line of reasoning. I do *not* attribute it to Rudolph
            Bultmann. It demonstrates that Bultmann's assumption that the Kingdom in
            the parable of the mustard seed cannot be the Spirit-Sophia is likely false.
            Indeed, since I have shown in past posts that the Kingdom appears to be the
            Spirit-Sophia in this parable, and, since you have so far failed to refute
            this interpretion of the parable, I think that the evidence demonstrates
            that the Kingdom probably is the Spirit-Sophia in this parable.

            Rick, you also say::
            > [regarding the "originality" of Mark's version of the mustard seed
            > parable Frank wrote:]
            >
            > In the History of the Synoptic Tradition (p. 172), Rudolph Bultmann
            > puts
            > this parable under the category of similitudes and he notes that there
            > is a
            > Q version of it as well. He also notes that "both Mark and Q preface
            > it
            > with a double question,..". This double attestation that Jesus
            > prefaced the
            > parable with a double question suggests that the double question by
            > Jesus is
            > original and that, therefore, the Thomas version is less original in
            > this
            > respect because it lacks the double question by Jesus.
            >
            > The second sentence above is again a misrepresentation of Bultmann's
            > position. Here is what he actually says:
            >
            > "Luke substantially reproduces the similtude from Q, while Matthew
            > combines Q's text with Mark. Both Mark and Q preface it with a double
            > question, the parable then following with hWS (or in Luke hOMIA
            > ESTIN)."
            >
            Rick, if you read my quote from Bultmann, you can plainly see that it
            accurately gives what Bultmann actually says, i.e., "Both Mark and Q preface
            it with a double question,..." Also, as I have pointed out earlier in this
            post, I accurately portray Bultmann in the other example as well.
            Therefore, there is no misrepresentation in what I say. It is true that I
            do not give the full story of what he says in each case, but there is only
            so much one can put into a post. That post is overly long
            as it stands and, so, it was impractical for me into long involved
            discussions about Butlmann's full thoughts on the subjects.

            Rick, you continue:
            > The content of the similtude here is not the entirety of Mk 4:30-32.
            > That to which Bultmann refers is the direct discourse of 4:31-32. 4:30
            > is editorial material according to Bultmann's principle that, "As a
            > rule, the expansion which any saying undergoes at its beginning
            > derives from its context" (history, 91). "Context" here is a euphemism
            > for what Bultmann calls the "productivity" of the church and which the
            > JS calls "The Story Seller's License (T5g, 29).
            >
            Rick, the quote I make from Bultmann regards the double question in 4:30.
            Let me repeat it, "Both Mark and Q preface it with a double question,.."
            Further, it is only the double question that I discuss following the quote.
            Let me repeat it, "This
            double attestation that Jesus prefaced the parable with a double question
            suggests that the double question by Jesus is original and that, therefore,
            the Thomas version is less original in this respect because it lacks the
            double question by Jesus." Hence, by making the assertion, "That to which
            Bultmann refers is the direct discourse of 4:31-32.", all you are doing is
            muddying the waters and straying afield. Bringing in the Jesus Seminar is
            even straying further afield. It is noteworthy that, in their section on
            "The storyteller's license" that you cite, every specific example they cite
            of alleged storytelling is from Mark. This is evidence of an anti-Markan
            bias on their part that raises very serious questions about the validity of
            their very negative evaluation of this gospel and the passages in it (e.g.,
            they say that Mark contains only one almost certainly true statement by
            Jesus)..

            Rick, I'd like to add that if (1) the double question by Jesus in the Q and
            Markan tradition probably is phony because it immediately precedes the
            parable of the mustard seed, then (2) the question of the disciples in GTh
            20 probably is phony because it immediately precedes the parable of the
            mustard seed. So, if Bultmann's principle is true and, therefore,
            applicable to
            the Markan and Q and Thomas accounts regarding the parable of the mustard
            seed (a dubious and unproven proposition to say the least), then the
            introductory question by the disciples in GTh 20 is probably phony and,
            hence, there is every reason to believe that Jesus initiated this parable on
            his own without any prompting. If so, then the Jesus Seminar is probably
            incorrect in saying that Jesus never did this sort of thing. So, Bultmann's
            principle is a two edged sword in that if you want to use it to attack the
            genuiness of the Markan and Q accounts of the parable of the mustard seed,
            you need to consider, before unleashing it, that it can also be used to
            attack the genuiness of GTh 20 and to attack the credibility of the Jesus
            Seminar.

            Rick, you also state:
            > But in any case, whether Mark's version represents an earlier
            > "version" of the mustard seed parable than that of Q or Lk (or Mt), it
            > has not been demonstrated by this particular argument. More
            > importantly there is still no defensible argument that the Kingdom
            > (here or anywhere else) refers to the Pneuma-Sophia complex.

            Rick, one defensible argument is this: I have already shown in recent posts
            that a large number of statements regarding the Kingdom in both the GTh and
            the canonical gospels can be interpreted in terms of the hypothesis that the
            Kingdom is the Spirit-Sophia. Also, along with this post, I am sending
            another post showing that yet two more statements regarding the Kingdom
            (i.e., GTh 97 and 98) can be interpreted in terms of this hypothesis. I
            know of no other hypothesis regarding the nature of the Kingdom that can be
            shown to possibly be applicable to all these statements regarding the
            Kingdom. Therefore, this hypothesis is actually the most likely one to be
            true because it has a wider range of applicability to the Kingdom statements
            than any other one.

            Regards,

            Frank McCoy
          • Jack Kilmon
            ... From: FMMCCOY To: Sent: Tuesday, June 05, 2001 9:56 PM Subject: Re: [GTh] Re: GTh 20: The Parable of
            Message 5 of 9 , Jun 5, 2001
            • 0 Attachment
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: "FMMCCOY" <FMMCCOY@...>
              To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Tuesday, June 05, 2001 9:56 PM
              Subject: Re: [GTh] Re: GTh 20: The Parable of the Mustard Seed and GTh
              21:The Parable of the Children in the Field


              >
              > ----- Original Message -----
              > From: "Rick Hubbard" <rhubbard@...>
              > To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
              > Sent: Sunday, June 03, 2001 4:32 PM
              > Subject: RE: [GTh] Re: GTh 20: The Parable of the Mustard Seed and GTh
              > 21:The Parable of the Children in the Field
              > Rick, I'd like to add that if (1) the double question by Jesus in the Q
              and
              > Markan tradition probably is phony because it immediately precedes the
              > parable of the mustard seed, then (2) the question of the disciples in GTh
              > 20 probably is phony because it immediately precedes the parable of the
              > mustard seed. So, if Bultmann's principle is true and, therefore,
              > applicable to
              > the Markan and Q and Thomas accounts regarding the parable of the mustard
              > seed (a dubious and unproven proposition to say the least), then the
              > introductory question by the disciples in GTh 20 is probably phony and,
              > hence, there is every reason to believe that Jesus initiated this parable
              on
              > his own without any prompting. If so, then the Jesus Seminar is probably
              > incorrect in saying that Jesus never did this sort of thing. So,
              Bultmann's
              > principle is a two edged sword in that if you want to use it to attack the
              > genuiness of the Markan and Q accounts of the parable of the mustard seed,
              > you need to consider, before unleashing it, that it can also be used to
              > attack the genuiness of GTh 20 and to attack the credibility of the Jesus
              > Seminar.

              My take on GoT 20 and the Markan parallel is that the Markan parallel is
              more
              "original" and actually redacted down in GoT.

              GOT20 The disciples said to Jesus, "Tell us what Heaven's kingdom is like."

              He said to them, It's like a mustard seed, the smallest of all seeds, but
              when it falls on prepared soil, it produces a large plant and becomes a
              shelter for birds of the sky.

              Markan Parallel showing Aramaic paronomasia:

              Mar 4:30 And he said, Whereunto shall we liken the kingdom of God?
              or with what comparison shall we compare it?

              Mar 4:31 [It is] like a grain of mustard seed, which, when it is
              sown in the earth, is less than all the seeds that be in the earth:

              Mar 4:32 But when it is sown / *zera* /, it groweth/ * rabhi*/ up,
              and becometh greater/* rabba* / than all herbs,/ *zeroin*/ and
              shooteth out great branches; so that the fowls of the air may lodge
              under the shadow of it.

              The Key sounds in Aramaic are the layrygal and sonant resh that form the
              paronomasia.

              No paranomasia is more certain in the gospels and it is recoverable ONLY
              from the Markan parallel and strongly suggests, to me, ORAL transmission
              from an Aramaic speaker to a WRITTEN form (Mark) and then
              transmitted to the GoT where it is actually *redacted down!!!* This does
              not
              rule out a common Aramaic source for Mark and for an early pre-coptic
              rescension
              of GoT. This Aramaic poetic style is also carried over to GoT Logion 21:

              Mar 4:26 And he said, So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should
              cast seed into the ground;

              This Markan form is a very strong example of the Aramaic paronomasia
              previously mentioned

              w)mr hw): hkn) hy mlkwt) d)lh), )yk )n$ dnrm) zr() b)r()
              w'amar hawa: hakena hi malkutha d'alaha, ayk anash denarma zara b'ara

              Note the punning "seed" zar'a and "ground" 'ar`a

              Mar 4:27 And should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed
              should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how.

              Mar 4:28 For the earth/ *'ar`a*/ bringeth forth fruit/* par`a*/ of
              herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear.

              Mar 4:29 But when the fruit is brought forth,

              Kadh yehibha 'ibbah

              immediately he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest is come.

              Shallah magla dah'sadha 'abbibh

              The Aramaic poetic style is restored in retroversion of the Markan form of
              this parable. Some scholars tend to make light of the offtimes illuminating
              nature of
              Aramaic retroversion for Yeshuine sayings yet in this case of Mk 4:26-29 the
              Assonance, alliteration and paronomasia are so strong as to make this a
              Certain Greek translation of an Aramaic parable. This was an indispensable
              characteristic of Semitic literary style. The pun is absent from modern
              literary form, even negatively regarded but in Aramaic and Hebrew, in the OT
              and Targumim..even Modern Hebrew, it is essential. That the Markan form is
              not a literary "development" of the GOT form is very clear to my Aramaic
              sensibilities. The source for Mark? The spoken Aramaic of Jesus as related
              by..(Peter?).
              The source for the GoT?

              Jack
            • George Brooks
              Jack, This is not the first time I ve been mesmerized by your transliteration of Aramaic! You write: The pun is absent from modern literary form, even
              Message 6 of 9 , Jun 6, 2001
              • 0 Attachment
                Jack,

                This is not the first time I've been mesmerized by
                your transliteration of Aramaic!

                You write:

                "The pun is absent from modern literary form, even negatively
                regarded but in Aramaic and Hebrew, in the OT and Targumim..even
                Modern Hebrew, it is essential. That the Markan form is not a
                literary "development" of the GOT form is very clear to my
                Aramaic sensibilities."

                When I read treatments like yours, it makes me kick myself
                for taking a few years of Latin. I should have taken
                ARAMAIC!!!! (Either that... or some Spanish LoL).

                Nice analysis, Jack. Which book would you recommend to
                read more "retro" work like this?

                George
              • mgrondin@tir.com
                ... You mean laryngeal (as in of the larynx )? Aside from that, how about putting these things in a way us non-linguists can understand? Mike
                Message 7 of 9 , Jun 6, 2001
                • 0 Attachment
                  --- Jack Kilmon wrote:
                  > The Key sounds in Aramaic are the layrygal and sonant resh that
                  > form the paronomasia.

                  You mean 'laryngeal' (as in 'of the larynx')? Aside from that, how
                  about putting these things in a way us non-linguists can understand?

                  Mike
                • Rick Hubbard
                  If there was a way that I could configure this computer to prevent me from typing certain words unless I confirmed about six times that I really wanted to use
                  Message 8 of 9 , Jun 7, 2001
                  • 0 Attachment
                    If there was a way that I could configure this computer to prevent me
                    from typing certain words unless I confirmed about six times that I
                    really wanted to use them, then two of those words would be "original"
                    and "originality." Inevitably, when I use those words in the context
                    of literary comparisons, I get into trouble. The following response
                    from Jack Kilmon regarding my remarks to Frank McCoy about Gth 20 and
                    "parallels" in Mk is a perfect example.

                    [Jack wrote:]
                    My take on GoT 20 and the Markan parallel is that the Markan parallel
                    is
                    more "original" and actually redacted down in GoT.

                    I did not mean to imply that both Mark and the Gth compiler shared a
                    common written source and that the version of either Thomas or Mark is
                    closest to that "original." Instead, I meant to argue that Thomas and
                    Mark each had access to what were probably oral traditions about Jesus
                    and that the construction of the similtude in Gth more closely
                    approximates the oral form than does the version in Mk. It is a widely
                    accepted principle that narratives and sayings associated with Jesus
                    that circulated in the oral tradition tended toward being shorter
                    rather than longer, and so, when one sees two written versions of what
                    appears to be the same saying, the one that is shortest probably is
                    closer to the oral version (assuming of course, that there was only
                    one oral version. It is possible that there may have been more than
                    one).

                    Your persistent argument that there is evidence of Aramaic linguistic
                    artifacts behind the written versions of the Jesus logia, is, as you
                    well know, not universally accepted. Since I do not know Aramaic, I
                    certainly have no business debating the merits of your hypotheses. I
                    will observe, however, that it is not necessary to identify any
                    "Aramaic Original" behind the sayings of Jesus in order to recover
                    what is closest to Jesus' actual utterances.

                    While it is very likely that Jesus spoke Aramaic, there remains the
                    very real possibility that he also spoke Greek. One must not ignore
                    the tremendous Hellenistic cultural influence that had existed for
                    generations in the western Mediterranean basin (e.g., Palestine).
                    Jesus lived in that cultural environment, and if we are to accept the
                    accounts of the canonical gospels he seemed to travel through portions
                    of it regularly and to discourse with its residents. If so, it seems
                    likely that he would have had to have some competency in Greek. This
                    does nothing to prove that he knew Greek, but the observation is
                    sufficient to leave open that possibility.

                    One of the arguments made by those who postulate an "Aramaic Jesus,"
                    is that the region where he lived was a cultural and linguistic
                    archipelago. In this enclave, Aramaic remained as the dominant
                    language and the traditions of the Judean religion were paramount. If
                    I understand correctly, this means that the enclave must have
                    successfully resisted the Hellenistic cultural influences that
                    engulfed virtually all of the remainder of the western Mediterranean
                    and that the linguistic and religious heritage of the enclave remained
                    largely unaffected.

                    Again, the merits of that hypothesis is not something I can comment on
                    directly, but I can relate something from my own experience that may
                    be analogous to the "enclave phenomenon" that seems to be a
                    foundational part of the "Aramaic Jesus" argument. I grew up on the
                    Flathead Indian Reservation in Western Montana. It seems to me that
                    there are a few intriguing parallels between the acculturation process
                    that occurred in Palestine and in the Mission Valley, where the
                    reservation was located. In both cases, the indigenous populations
                    were inundated by new languages. In Palestine, it was Greek. In
                    Montana, it was English. American culture was introduced into this
                    area by the Jesuits and by commercial representatives of the Hudson
                    Bay Company beginning around the middle of the 19th century. By the
                    time I was born, roughly one hundred years later, virtually all
                    Indians spoke English, but a large number of continued to speak Salish
                    as well. The native language was spoken primarily in homes, at
                    cultural gatherings, in the tribal government and in the context of
                    religious practices. However, in the course of day to day activities,
                    English was the routine language.

                    The analogy between the two is this: In both cases (Palestine and
                    Montana), we can observe that the cultural traditions of the two
                    indigenous populations were subjected to overwhelming outside
                    influences. In the latter case, it is known for certain that, while
                    the language of the native population continued to be used and the
                    traditional religious practices were still followed (in spite of the
                    most vigorous efforts of missionaries), the Native Americans regularly
                    used the language of the culture that had surrounded them. It seems to
                    me therefore very likely that the situation in Palestine was similar.
                    Certain enclaves in the region, perhaps including where Jesus lived,
                    also managed to retain and keep alive their language and religious
                    traditions, but as a matter of survival, they also used the Greek
                    language. If that is true, then Jesus may have been as fluent in Greek
                    as he was in Aramaic.

                    This of course does virtually nothing to deny the argument that an
                    Aramaic original lies behind the Jesus logia. But it does, to a
                    degree, reaffirm the possibility that Jesus *did* speak Greek and that
                    therefore it is not essential that reconstruction of an Aramaic
                    Original to his sayings is the only certain means by which his
                    "authentic words" can be recovered.


                    Rick Hubbard
                    Humble Maine Woodsman
                  • David C. Hindley
                    ... me from typing certain words unless I confirmed about six times that I really wanted to use them, then two of those words would be original and
                    Message 9 of 9 , Jun 7, 2001
                    • 0 Attachment
                      Rick Hubbard laments:

                      >>If there was a way that I could configure this computer to prevent
                      me from typing certain words unless I confirmed about six times that I
                      really wanted to use them, then two of those words would be "original"
                      and "originality." <<

                      Yes you can.

                      Presuming that your e-mail software's built-in editor (or the WP you
                      use as an e-mail editor) performs a spell check before sending the
                      message, just find the way into your spell checking dictionary and
                      erase the entries for "original" and "originality." Then it will
                      always prompt you with a dialogue box seeking confirmation when it
                      encounters these words, offering you alternative words, etc. If you
                      say "yes accept this word" it will probably ask you again in a
                      different way just to be sure.

                      I may well do that sort of thing myself with words like "merely,"
                      "simply," "obviously," and other words often used in a dismissive
                      sense, just to prevent me from falling into the trap of dismissing
                      evidence contrary to my pet hypotheses for the sake of convenience.

                      Respectfully,

                      Dave Hindley
                      Cleveland, Ohio, USA
                    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.