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RE: [GTh] Re: Jesus, The 'incomplete' Story

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  • Jacob Knee
    Whether it s far fetched or not (it seems to me that it is, FWIW) isn t what I am trying to know: what I m interested in is whether it s true or not. I m still
    Message 1 of 6 , Dec 30, 2001
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      Whether it's far fetched or not (it seems to me that it is, FWIW) isn't what
      I am trying to know: what I'm interested in is whether it's true or not.

      I'm still hoping that you might provide some evidence...

      Best wishes,
      Jacob Knee
      (Cam, Gloucestershire)



      -----Original Message-----
      From: Tom Saunders [mailto:tom@...]
      Sent: 30 December 2001 00:24
      To: gthomas@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [GTh] Re: Jesus, The 'incomplete' Story


      Not at all. Not Xians. I am talking about 'turning in', 'snitching to
      authorities.' Why should some church fellow get his hands dirty with a
      dissenter when there are others who do that kind of thing all the time. Its
      not so far fetched when you consider that is how the Jews got rid of Jesus,
      they used the Romans.

      The Gnostics must have had this kind of problem with other Xians all the
      time. Certainly this phenomena happened a lot in later years all over the
      Xian communities when heresy got you killed.

      Tom
    • David C. Hindley
      ... Not at all. Not Xians. I am talking about turning in , snitching to authorities. Why should some church fellow get his hands dirty with a dissenter
      Message 2 of 6 , Dec 30, 2001
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        Tom Saunders said:

        >> [Did early christian communities crucify 'dissenters'?]
        Not at all. Not Xians. I am talking about 'turning in',
        'snitching to authorities.' Why should some church fellow
        get his hands dirty with a dissenter when there are others
        who do that kind of thing all the time. Its not so far
        fetched when you consider that is how the Jews got rid of
        Jesus, they used the Romans.<<

        While such cases may have been recorded, the only thing
        close to it I am aware of is one faction of the family of
        David turning in the head of a rival faction (which
        allegedly was also a relative of Jesus) on a charge of
        political agitation. The story, in Hegesippus (as retold by
        Eusebius, and paraphrased below) is muddled:

        1) After the capture of the Jews by (Emperor) Vespasian
        "there still survived of the kindred of the Lord the (two)
        grandsons of Judas, who (Judas) according to the flesh was
        called his (Jesus') brother. These were informed against, as
        belonging to the family of David, and (an official named?)
        Evocatus (or a person who held the rank of an evocati in the
        army?) brought them before Domitian Caesar: for (that one)
        dreaded the coming of Christ, as Herod had done." Domitian,
        however, let them go upon the determination that they only
        had between them equal shares in a farm of 39 plethra [just
        over 9 acres] in area, (with a net worth) of about 9,000
        (denarii), and that they worked the farm themselves to pay
        the taxes (i.e., they had no liquid assets with which to
        finance sedition). They were evidently not considered very
        dangerous. They were also supposed to have explained to the
        Emperor that the Kingdom of Christ was a heavenly one that
        had only eschatological significance, which likewise
        resulted in Domitian lifting the persecution of "the
        church." After their release they became leaders of the
        churches (plural) and lived until the times of the Emperor
        Trajan. [Eusebius 3:20}

        2) In the reign of Trajan, Jewish-Christian "heretics"
        charged "120 yr old" Symeon son of Clopas (the age is
        Hegesippus� guess) with being of (the family of) David and a
        Christian. He was tortured and executed during the period
        when Atticus was governor (possibly Procurator or Prefect
        over Judea), which was likely between 103/3 and 104/5 AD.
        His accusers (i.e. the "heretics") it turned out were also
        convicted by the same Governor of being members of "the
        royal tribe" of the Jews. It is not clear whether the charge
        was levied as a political maneuver that backfired or whether
        the accusers had been charged independently and �informed�
        on Symeon while undergoing questioning by torture. This
        Symeon was son of Clopas, who is said to be Jesus' "uncle"
        as well as father of the Mary mentioned in John 19:25ff.
        [Eusebius 3:32]

        >> The Gnostics must have had this kind of problem with
        other Xians all the time. Certainly this phenomena happened
        a lot in later years all over the Xian communities when
        heresy got you killed.<<

        Are you crossing civil government persecutions of Christians
        (local as well as regional) through circa 325 CE with
        Christian persecution of Christian "heretics" after that
        date? They are different persecutions carried out by
        different parties for different reasons. In the 3rd century,
        one of the chief orthodox complaints against gnostic
        heretics was that they were willing to sacrifice to the
        emperor if discovered, as they considered the act of no real
        consequence. After all, many of them were learning secret
        passwords and seals to be used to dupe the angels of the
        demiurge stationed at the gates of each heaven during the
        ascent of their soul to the pleroma. Why not dupe the
        government powers sanctioned by the demiurge as well?

        Respectfully,

        Dave Hindley
        Cleveland, Ohio, USA
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