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[HJMatMeth] Re: GOT in the New Quest

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  • John Dominic Crossan
    I agree with you, Jack, that the Gospel of Thomas is independent of the Synoptics (apart, as you say, from some synoptic retrojection similar to that which
    Message 1 of 2 , Feb 12, 2000
      I agree with you, Jack, that the Gospel of Thomas is independent of the
      Synoptics (apart, as you say, from some synoptic retrojection similar to
      that which canonical scribes did in aligning the New Testament Gospels with
      one another). I do not think, however, that it is the earliest chunk of
      sayings material, let alone that it dates from the lifetime of the
      historical Jesus. In my own methodology, simply as a disciplinary safeguard,
      I bracket from my primary stratum anything that is singly attested in it or
      anywhere else. I do not mean that such material cannot be original. Of
      course it can (the Good Samaritan, for example). But as a safeguard I hold
      it and assess it on a secondary level. Similarly, I do not use as my primary
      level, anything that is only in the Gospel of Thomas. Furthermore, I can
      accept a final dating for Thomas wherever the Thomas experts manage to agree
      because what I am using from it (and this is emphatically not my idea, but
      Steve PattersonĀ¹s) is the material that is common to both the Gospel of
      Thomas (I accept its independence) and Q (I accept its existence). That
      Common Sayings Material cannot be created by either of them, since I
      consider them mutually independent (from both sequence diversity and content
      difference), and so it must be earlier than both of them. It is on that
      material that I focus. In The Historical Jesus I looked at everything that I
      considered in the earliest stratum. That meant, essentially, anything in
      Paul and elsewhere or in Q and elsewhere (independently). In The Birth of
      Christianity I focused primarily (having read Patterson) on that Common
      Sayings Tradition. That would be what I would call first stratum material. I
      would not use that term for the Gospel of Thomas itself. You also mention
      that you tried to "follow the Aramaic." I must admit that I lack the
      linguistic capabilities to find the Aramaic in a Coptic gospel translated
      from the Greek.

      >From: Jack Kilmon <jkilmon@...>
      >To: hjmaterialsmethodolgy@...
      >Subject: [HJMatMeth] Re: GOT in the New Quest
      >Date: Fri, Feb 11, 2000, 11:57 AM

      > I think all would agree, even his detractors, that Dom Crossan has
      > been a "hub"
      > for contemporary efforts in reconstructing the HJ from the available
      > evidence. If I
      > were to choose what is unique about his methodology it would be the
      > "Triple Triadic Process." If I were to speculate over what is new about
      > the evidence to which
      > this methodology is applied, I would look at the Gospel of Thomas. It
      > is no secret
      > among my Xtalk friends that I consider GOT to be independent of the
      > Synoptics
      > (in spite of a tad of synoptic corruption) and to be the earliest
      > material of sayings, dating perhaps to the lifetime of the HJ himself.
      > It is also no secret that my primary rule for the earliest sayings
      > material is
      > "follow the Aramaic."
      > I have noticed some Aramaisms in GOT sayings material but cannot
      > consider
      > that probative unless Crossan's "second triad" involving stratification
      > is first
      > applied and that I am "following the Aramaic" in first stratum material
      > rather
      > than Synoptic corruption of the text.
      > My question, therefore, to Dr. Crossan is how he has handled GOT in his
      > methodologies and if he has inventoried 1st stratum material.
      > Jack
      > --
      > ______________________________________________
      > taybutheh d'maran yeshua masheecha am kulkon
      > Jack Kilmon
      > jkilmon@...
      > http://www.historian.net
      > sharing a meal for free.
      > http://www.thehungersite.com/
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