Re: [GTh] Crosstalk Discussions
----- Original Message -----
From: "Michael Grondin" <mwgrondin@...>
Sent: Wednesday, March 31, 2004 5:51 AM
Subject: Re: [GTh] Crosstalk Discussions
> This is notice that I've uploaded a spreadsheet for Gordon's
> scheme to our Files section (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/gthomas/files)-
> together with a slightly emended version of his text (#68 was shown twice,
> with different shadings).
I'd like to thank Gordon for his work and then comment on it.
After reading through the Crosstalk discussion the basis for the
three layers seems the following.
Layer 1 is mainly the material in Thomas that goes back to the
Historical Jesus/Very Early Church
Layer 2 is mainly the material that goes back to the Church of
AD 70 and before
Layer 3 is mainly the substantially Post AD 70 material.
My difficulty is that these layers can be taken in 2 ways, either
i/ in a Form Critical way in which we are talking of the dates of
the origin of the sayings considered as isolated sayings
or ii/ in a Source or Redacton Critical way in which we are talking
of the dates and composition of various hypothetical documents.
If taken in sense i/ This seems valid in principle, (I agree some of
the sayings go back to the very earliest chrch some are well after
AD 70 some come inbetween), and although I would question
some of the details, Gordon's assignations of sayings to layers seems
However, from the general nature of Gordon's discussion and specific
suggestions about changes in order of sayings between Layers 1
and 2, it seems clear that the layers are to be taken as Source
documents for Thomas or Redactions of Thomas and I have
problems with this.
It is unlikely IMHO that there ever was a pre-70 document
attributed to Thomas, containing mainly the material which is in
our Thomas and goes back to the earliest church, and arranging
this material in a way similar to our Thomas. I think it more likely
that the selection and ordering of this material into a document
attributed to Thomas is later than AD 70, although the individual
sayings in the original form of this document may well be much earlier.
Nor am I convinced that all the early material in Thomas was
present in early versions of Thomas and that the last stage in
the redaction of Thomas was the addition of gnosticizing material.
It seems likely IMO that the last 10 sayings of our Thomas has
had gnosticizing material added at a very late stage, (maybe mid
2nd century). However most of the gnosticizing material in
Thomas may have been present in much earlier forms of the
document and some very early material, (eg the parables in
sayings 63-65 which IMHO interrupt the flow of Thomas's
themes), may have been added at a late stage, under the influence
of the canonical synoptic gospels.
Gordon, I may be misunderstanding what you are saying in
which case I apologize and would appreciate clarification.
Otherwise it would help if you went into more detail about how
you distinguish evidence for the date of origin of a saying from
evidence for the date at which a saying was incorporated in a
- Hi Andrew,
Thank you for your note. This is a most busy week for me, but I do want to
get to your post. I'll see how the week goes re: time to think this through
and write a decent reply. But I will get back to you.
- Hi Bill,
This is a hectic week for we preacher folk, but just a quick reply to this
>May you now thaw:)!
>>Good to hear from you! So you survived the winter freeze:)!
>And it was a BAD winter this year, for any number of reasons.
>I do hope I can read hers and yours at some point. Could you possibly snail
>>work available online? Can you easily send me your "rigorous work?"
>The answer to both questions is, probably not. I am not aware of April's
>article being on-line, nor my own. I know that sometime within the last
>couple years, someone had wanted to post my HTR piece on their website, so I
>wrote to HTR about the copyright, and never got a response. I forget who
>wanted to do this, and don't know whether they went ahead with it anyway. I
mail your piece?
>>To another matter, I'd like to hear your thoughts about the date and sitzWe agree on the former, but the latter interests me. I'd sometimes like to
>>early Thomas. Do you conceive it, like you conceive Q1, "very early" (as
>>from you "Jesus and the Village Scribes" work)?
>Well, since I'm no longer convinced I was right, it's hard to say. But yes,
>my inclination was to regard the foundational layer as quite early. And I am
>STILL inclined to date the complete Thomas, i.e., Thomas as we more or less
>have it, as very early -- i.e., 40s to 60s or thereabouts. I have yet to be
>convinced by any of the arguments placing Thomas late-ish.
hear your thoughts about the sitz you see that led to that later layer(s) so
early. When I look at what I consider to be the earliest layer, that social
praxis looks to be changing in saying 6 and then saying 14:1-2 looks to be
taking this in yet a new way. That latter redaction of the earliest layer
fits nicely into the second century, but it fascinates me that you want to
place such so early. When you have time and I have some time to talk this
out, I'd like to do so.
Good to hear from you.
- Hey Gordon, and everyone:
>I do hope I can read hers and yours at some point. Could you possiblyI could, but it might be quicker to find a local university library that
>mail your piece?
carries HTR. If you want, though, I'll mail it to you -- e-mail me off list
with you mailing address. And please, no requests from others! I'd run out
of time, and postage, pretty quickly.
>We agree on the former, but the latter interests me. I'd sometimes like toSocial praxis can change overnight, or in a year or two. It doesn't require
>hear your thoughts about the sitz you see that led to that later layer(s)
>early. When I look at what I consider to be the earliest layer, that social
>praxis looks to be changing in saying 6 and then saying 14:1-2 looks to be
>taking this in yet a new way.
decades. Paul's coail praxis changes from letter to letter. If we used the
same techniques used to date Thomas to date Paul's letters, we'd end up
dating letters like 1 Cor and Philippians to the second century, I suspect.
>When you have time and I have some time to talk thisSounds good. It's the end of term for me, so I don't have any more time at
>out, I'd like to do so.
the moment to develop this stuff than you do. Later, then.
University of Regina
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- In a message dated 04/06/2004 09:40:17 PM, warnal@... writes:
> ... Thomas to date Paul's letters, we'd end up dating lettersI think that many are overly cautious of Thomas because they still ascribe
> like 1 Cor and Philippians to the second century, I suspect.
to the theory that there is Guilt by association.
That is, because it was found in the Nag Hummadi that it must then be late
As noted this is a false Premise.
I would also note that Davies has suggested a pre existent Jewish Gnostic
like Genre emerging in the first century.
If this were so?
The Jewish revolt in the 60s may have caused the dissolution and
scattering of the proponents of this Genre and Belief system.
Failing the initial movement This would then be taken up" after the
Revolt" by the emerging Christian Church.
That is it may be understandable that such would disappear, For a time
only to emerge later..
It might very well be expected.
Springfield, Tenn 37172
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