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Jesus and JB in Jn

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  • Yuri Kuchinsky
    Dear friends, I would like to draw your attention to the following two passages in the Gospel of John. John 1:31 (RSV) I myself did not know him; but for this
    Message 1 of 17 , Feb 27, 2002
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      Dear friends,

      I would like to draw your attention to the following two passages in the
      Gospel of John.

      John 1:31 (RSV)
      I myself did not know him; but for this I came
      baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to
      Israel."

      John 3:26 (RSV)
      26 And they came to John, and said to him, "Rabbi,
      he who was with you beyond the Jordan, to whom you
      bore witness, here he is, baptizing, and all are going to
      him."

      In these two passages, there's no indication that Jesus was baptised by
      John the Baptist. And yet in the Magdalene Gospel, a unique medieval
      biblical text that I have now translated for the first time, these
      passages are quite different. In fact, according to these two Magdalene
      passages, Jesus _was_ baptised by John the Baptist.

      the Magdalene Gospel (ms Pepys 2498) ~ translated by Yuri Kuchinsky
      http://www.styx.org/yuku/pepys/mag.html

      MG 9:3 -- "And so that to bear witness to him, I came to baptise him."
      (Parallel to Jn 1:31.)

      MG 12:4 -- "And [the disciples] came to John, and told him that he, who
      was baptised by him in the river Jordan, baptised now in Judea..."
      (Parallel to Jn 3:26.)

      In fact, this seems like part of a wide pattern in the Magdalene Gospel --
      in this document, Jesus and John the Baptist are generally portrayed as
      being a lot closer together. In contrast, in the canonical gospels, there
      seems to be a clear pattern of distancing Jesus from John.

      So these are only two among the 45 passages that are more friendly to Jews
      and Judaism that I've found in the Magdalene Gospel. In my view, these
      passages demonstrate quite clearly that MG represents an ancient
      Jewish-Christian document -- the text that may be generally more primitive
      than our canonical Jn.

      This list of 45 begins with the passages where the family of Jesus, his
      mother, his disciples, John the Baptist, and the disciples of John are all
      treated in a more positive light, compared to the canonicals. Then, there
      are also the passages where other Jews are also treated in more positive
      light -- and this includes the Pharisees and the scribes. Passages where
      there is a much closer association between Jesus, John the Baptist, and
      their respective disciples are also included, along with those where the
      people of Israel welcome the teachings of Jesus a lot more warmly than in
      the Greek text.

      And in turn, these 45 passages belong to the 80 Magdalene Gospel passages,
      as listed and analysed in my new book, that are quite clearly more
      primitive than the parallel canonical passages.

      All these items seem to indicate quite clearly that the Magdalene Gospel
      could not have been some medieval production. All these indicators of
      primitivity are the directional indicators that will be very hard to
      reverse.

      Best wishes,

      Yuri.

      Yuri.

      The future of early Christianity? -- THE MAGDALENE GOSPEL: A JOURNEY
      BEHIND THE NEW TESTAMENT, by Yuri Kuchinsky -- a new book that includes
      the first ever translation of what seems like the earliest Christian
      gospel of them all -- http://www.styx.org/yuku/pepys/mgj.htm

      Biblical history list http://groups.yahoo.com/group/loisy/
    • Horace Jeffery Hodges
      ... John 1:31 (RSV) I myself did not know him; but for this I came baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to Israel. John 3:26 (RSV) 26 And they
      Message 2 of 17 , Feb 27, 2002
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        Yuri wrote:

        -------------------------------------------------------
        John 1:31 (RSV)
        I myself did not know him; but for this I came
        baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to
        Israel."

        John 3:26 (RSV)
        26 And they came to John, and said to him, "Rabbi,
        he who was with you beyond the Jordan, to whom you
        bore witness, here he is, baptizing, and all are going
        to him."

        In these two passages, there's no indication that
        Jesus was baptised by John the Baptist. And yet in the
        Magdalene Gospel, a unique medieval biblical text that
        I have now translated for the first time, these
        passages are quite different. In fact, according to
        these two Magdalene passages, Jesus _was_ baptised by
        John the Baptist.

        The Magdalene Gospel (ms Pepys 2498) ~ translated by
        Yuri Kuchinsky http://www.styx.org/yuku/pepys/mag.html

        MG 9:3 -- "And so that to bear witness to him, I came
        to baptise him." (Parallel to Jn 1:31.)

        MG 12:4 -- "And [the disciples] came to John, and told
        him that he, who was baptised by him in the river
        Jordan, baptised now in Judea..." (Parallel to Jn
        3:26.)
        -------------------------------------------------------

        [By the way, Yuri, here's a note about English
        grammar: The "who was baptised..." clause is a
        restrictive relative clause and CANNOT have any commas
        setting it off.]

        Yuri, I would think that these differences could be
        explained by reference to the synoptics, which
        explicitly provide the information that Jesus was
        baptized by John. This coheres with the view that the
        MG is a harmonization of the gospels.

        MG 9:3 looks like an addition to John 1:31 to
        emphasize that the baptism was part of John the
        Baptist's witness to Jesus as the Son of God and not a
        baptism for the forgiveness of Jesus's sins.

        MG 12:4 looks like it draws from the synoptic
        parallels Mt. 3:13/Mk. 1:9/[Lk. 3:21].

        What I find interesting is a remark in John 3:26 that
        is lost in MG 12:4 (in the passage that you provided
        above). John 3:26 says that Jesus was "with ... [John]
        beyond the Jordan." MG 12:4 says only that Jesus was
        baptized by John in the Jordan. John 3:26 thus appears
        to suggest a closer relationship between John and
        Jesus than MG 12:4 does. This would seem to be a
        counterexample to your thesis that the MG shows Jesus
        and John as closer.

        Jeffery Hodges

        =====
        Assistant Professor Horace Jeffery Hodges
        Hanshin University (Korean Theological University)
        447-791 Kyunggido Osan-City
        Yangsandong 411
        South Korea

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      • kymhsm
        Dear Yuri, ... baptised by John the Baptist. I cannot say anything about the Magdalene Gospel, although Jeffery s comment that it is a synchronisation of
        Message 3 of 17 , Feb 27, 2002
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          Dear Yuri,

          > John 1:31 (RSV)
          > John 3:26 (RSV)
          > In these two passages, there's no indication that Jesus was
          baptised by > John the Baptist.

          I cannot say anything about the Magdalene Gospel, although
          Jeffery's comment that it is a synchronisation of John with the
          Synoptics seems a reasonable explanation for the material it
          contains that the FG has omitted. I suspect that 1:29-34 has
          sufficient in it to imply that it was through his baptising – with the
          subsequent descent of the Spirit – that John identified the Christ.

          I would suggest another reason why John did not include the
          actual baptism, however. As I have already stated on this forum, I
          believe that John used Genesis 1&2 as a structure for his
          gospel from 1:1 – 20:29. For the most part, that structure is
          reflected in the `events' of the FG. In and around the events, John
          includes a considerable amount of discourse material. Had
          John included the `event' of the baptism, he would have had to fit
          it into the Genesis structure. By including only discourse `about'
          the baptism, John was able to imply the fact of it without having
          to justify it in the Genesis structure (which did not allow for it).

          The sudden and seemingly out of place introduction of JB in
          1:6-8 is thought by many to be a piece of displaced text. The
          Genesis structure shows that this is not the case. Scholars
          acknowledge the connection between Jn 1:1-5 and Gen 1:1-2a
          but leave it there. It is the introduction of JB that continues the
          parallel. In Gen 2b "…the Spirit of God was moving over the face
          of the waters"; with JB we have the Spirit of God descending over
          the waters of the Jordan. The whole passage from 1:6-34, then,
          allows for this to be expressed. John had more to say about the
          Word (i.e. 1:9-18) but introduced JB first to secure the Genesis
          structure.

          Sincerely,

          Kym Smith
          Adelaide
          South Australia
          khs@...
        • ProfRam@aol.com
          In a message dated 2/27/2002 2:02:17 PM Eastern Standard Time, yuku@trends.ca writes:
          Message 4 of 17 , Feb 28, 2002
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            In a message dated 2/27/2002 2:02:17 PM Eastern Standard Time, yuku@...
            writes:

            << And yet in the Magdalene Gospel, a unique medieval
            biblical text that I have now translated for the first time, these
            passages are quite different. In fact, according to these two Magdalene
            passages, Jesus _was_ baptised by John the Baptist. >>

            So too in Joseph Smith's "Inspired Version" of the Church of Jesus Christ of
            Latter Day Saints, at least in John 1:31: "And John bare record, saying; When
            he was baptized of me, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove,
            and it abode on him."


            Ramsey Michaels
          • Yuri Kuchinsky
            ... Yes, Jeffery, I can see my mistake now. Thanks for the correction. ... There are quite a few MG passages that are harmonizations of the gospels. But also,
            Message 5 of 17 , Feb 28, 2002
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              On Wed, 27 Feb 2002, Horace Jeffery Hodges wrote:
              > Yuri wrote:

              > The Magdalene Gospel (ms Pepys 2498) ~ translated by
              > Yuri Kuchinsky http://www.styx.org/yuku/pepys/mag.html
              >
              > MG 9:3 -- "And so that to bear witness to him, I came
              > to baptise him." (Parallel to Jn 1:31.)
              >
              > MG 12:4 -- "And [the disciples] came to John, and told
              > him that he, who was baptised by him in the river
              > Jordan, baptised now in Judea..." (Parallel to Jn
              > 3:26.)
              > -------------------------------------------------------
              >
              > [By the way, Yuri, here's a note about English
              > grammar: The "who was baptised..." clause is a
              > restrictive relative clause and CANNOT have any commas
              > setting it off.]

              Yes, Jeffery, I can see my mistake now. Thanks for the correction.

              > Yuri, I would think that these differences could be
              > explained by reference to the synoptics, which
              > explicitly provide the information that Jesus was
              > baptized by John. This coheres with the view that the
              > MG is a harmonization of the gospels.
              >
              > MG 9:3 looks like an addition to John 1:31 to
              > emphasize that the baptism was part of John the
              > Baptist's witness to Jesus as the Son of God and not a
              > baptism for the forgiveness of Jesus's sins.
              >
              > MG 12:4 looks like it draws from the synoptic
              > parallels Mt. 3:13/Mk. 1:9/[Lk. 3:21].

              There are quite a few MG passages that are harmonizations of the gospels.
              But also, it's quite clear that a lot of MG passages are not
              harmonizations -- rather they represent straight texts from single
              gospels. These two passages seem to fall in the latter category, because
              they lack any real evidence of harmonization with the Synoptics. The
              feature that you think may be a harmonisation is the only feature that may
              be interpreted in such a way.

              Also, as I wrote in my previous post, these two passages are part of a
              clear trend in the Magdalene Gospel -- in this document, Jesus and John
              the Baptist are generally portrayed as being a lot closer together. MG
              actually includes quite a few details of this nature that are absent from
              all 4 canonical gospels. So, clearly, harmonization will not explain such
              details in any way.

              > What I find interesting is a remark in John 3:26 that
              > is lost in MG 12:4 (in the passage that you provided
              > above). John 3:26 says that Jesus was "with ... [John]
              > beyond the Jordan." MG 12:4 says only that Jesus was
              > baptized by John in the Jordan. John 3:26 thus appears
              > to suggest a closer relationship between John and
              > Jesus than MG 12:4 does. This would seem to be a
              > counterexample to your thesis that the MG shows Jesus
              > and John as closer.

              Well, this is something that can be profitably discussed. Namely, which
              version of this passage tends to suggest a closer relationship between
              John and Jesus. Can we say that (a) Jesus being baptised by John suggests
              a closer relationship between the two, or that (b) Jesus merely spending
              some time with John suggests a closer relationship between them? Myself, I
              vote for (a).

              Also, I would like to hear your opinion as to why the baptism of Jesus by
              John is absent in Jn. Do you think it possible that some early version of
              Jn in fact did feature Jesus being baptised by John?

              Best wishes,

              Yuri.

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

              The goal proposed by Cynic philosophy is apathy, which is
              equivalent to becoming God -=O=- Julian
            • Yuri Kuchinsky
              ... Dear Kym, Of course it s possible that the author of John used Genesis 1&2 as a structure for his gospel from 1:1 - 20:29, although AFAIK this view is not
              Message 6 of 17 , Feb 28, 2002
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                On Thu, 28 Feb 2002, kymhsm wrote:

                > I would suggest another reason why John did not include the actual
                > baptism, however. As I have already stated on this forum, I believe
                > that John used Genesis 1&2 as a structure for his gospel from 1:1 -
                > 20:29. For the most part, that structure is reflected in the `events'
                > of the FG. In and around the events, John includes a considerable
                > amount of discourse material. Had John included the `event' of the
                > baptism, he would have had to fit it into the Genesis structure. By
                > including only discourse `about' the baptism, John was able to imply
                > the fact of it without having to justify it in the Genesis structure
                > (which did not allow for it).

                Dear Kym,

                Of course it's possible that the author of John used Genesis 1&2 as a
                structure for his gospel from 1:1 - 20:29, although AFAIK this view is not
                widely shared. But I think here also our underlying presuppositions may
                come into play. In my view, the gospels have some real historical events
                as their basis. So I would not necessarily agree that the mythological
                events from the OT would have overwhelmed the historical base of the
                gospels to a very great degree.

                Best wishes,

                Yuri.

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

                I doubt, therefore I might be.
              • kymhsm
                Dear Yuri, ... 1&2 as a structure for his gospel from 1:1 - 20:29, although AFAIK this view is not widely shared. True, it is not widely shared - not yet
                Message 7 of 17 , Feb 28, 2002
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                  Dear Yuri,

                  > Of course it's possible that the author of John used Genesis
                  1&2 as a > structure for his gospel from 1:1 - 20:29, although
                  AFAIK this view is not > widely shared.

                  True, it is not widely shared - not yet anyway. It is something that I
                  have stumbled upon.

                  >But I think here also our underlying presuppositions may >
                  come into play. In my view, the gospels have some real historical
                  events > as their basis.

                  I am not suggesting that John did not use historical events. He
                  did, however, parallel those events with the first two chapters of
                  Genesis. Several examples may be useful. Jesus' baptism I
                  have already explained. The two mentions of Adam's movement
                  from outside to inside the garden are matched by Jesus' final
                  entry into Jerusalem and his going to the garden (Gethsemane).
                  Adam's deep sleep in the garden and the removal of his rib is
                  matched by Jesus death (in a garden [19:41]) and his being
                  pierced in the side. The presentation of Eve to Adam is
                  paralleled by Mary Magdalene's (sole) encounter with Jesus (in
                  the same garden - she thought he was the gardener [20:15, c.f.
                  Gen 2:15]). Jesus' first word to her is "Woman" (cf. Gen 2:23;
                  'she shall be called woman'). John's acount implies that other
                  women were down at the tomb (20:2 '...'we' do not know...') but
                  he only mentions Mary because of his aligning his Gospel with
                  Gen 1&2.

                  >So I would not necessarily agree that the mythological > events
                  from the OT would have overwhelmed the historical base of the >
                  gospels to a very great degree.>

                  The 'historical base' is not 'overwhelmed', but John has used the
                  Genesis structure to in clude ideas additional to those in the
                  plain text. He has shown two main things with this stucture.
                  From Genesis 1 (Jn 1:1-11:44), that the Word who became flesh
                  and dwelt among us, Jesus, was the one created all things (c.f.
                  Jn 1:3) and, from Genesis 2 (Jn 11:45-20:29), to express a
                  sublime First Adam / Second Adam theology - all the more
                  sublime because it is the pre-Fall Adam with whom he is
                  drawing the parallels.

                  Sincerely,

                  Kym Smith
                  Adelaide
                  South Australia
                  khs@...
                • Horace Jeffery Hodges
                  ... Lots of people were baptized by John. I vote for time spent with him beyond the Jordan as indicative of a closer relationship. ... My opinion, which is not
                  Message 8 of 17 , Feb 28, 2002
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                    Yuri Kuchinsky wrote:

                    > Well, this is something that can be profitably
                    > discussed. Namely, which version of this passage
                    > tends to suggest a closer relationship between
                    > John and Jesus. Can we say that (a) Jesus being
                    > baptised by John suggests a closer relationship
                    > between the two, or that (b) Jesus merely spending
                    > some time with John suggests a closer relationship
                    > between them? Myself, I vote for (a).

                    Lots of people were baptized by John. I vote for time
                    spent with him beyond the Jordan as indicative of a
                    closer relationship.

                    > Also, I would like to hear your opinion as to why
                    > the baptism of Jesus by John is absent in Jn. Do you
                    > think it possible that some early version of
                    > Jn in fact did feature Jesus being baptised by John?

                    My opinion, which is not based upon a serious study of
                    the issue, is that John's Gospel presents such a high
                    Christology that it avoids the image of John baptizing
                    Jesus.

                    As for early versions of John, I don't know.

                    Jeffery Hodges

                    =====
                    Assistant Professor Horace Jeffery Hodges
                    Hanshin University (Korean Theological University)
                    447-791 Kyunggido Osan-City
                    Yangsandong 411
                    South Korea

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                  • michael Hardin
                    These would be my questions Yuri: 1) In that the MG text reflects synchronization/harmonization of the canonical gospels, in what textual tradition would a
                    Message 9 of 17 , Mar 1, 2002
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                      These would be my questions Yuri:

                      1) In that the MG text reflects
                      synchronization/harmonization of the canonical
                      gospels, in what textual tradition would a greek
                      'retranslation' stand (what is presupposed)? Or are
                      there affinities with several textual traditions?

                      2) The prologue as an early christians hymn (sans the
                      references to JTB) needs no defending. But also a
                      hymn grounded in a midrash of Gen 1 (Borgen)? I think
                      so. Kym Smith's Genesis observations are intruiging
                      here.

                      If one wishes to see an earlier than canonical Jesus
                      tradition ( as do many Thomas/Q questers), I am not
                      persuded that MG would fit until I had examined the
                      passion narrative. As a meta-narrative where does it
                      place the death of Jesus, before or after Passover?
                      This would be a strong indication of it's provinence
                      at least East/West.

                      The Johannine tradition is of far more historical
                      value than given by the present state of NT research
                      who seem to reflect Clement of Alexandria. Dodd &
                      Robinson have laid an excelent foundation in this
                      regard. This is not to say that the gospel was not
                      produced in stages, only to say that perhaps Kym Smith
                      is correct to observe that it was the events which
                      upon reflection were associated with the
                      'mythical/prophetic' archtypes, not the other way
                      around. (It is hish to time to stop paying homage to
                      Bousset)

                      Some quick thoughts:

                      MG 1.3 sound definitely post-Nicean so if it is early
                      it is already coming under the corrector's hand. Can
                      you identify that hand?

                      MG 1.4 'law & prophets', a Matthean phrase if there
                      ever was one [can we call this the Matthean
                      thunderbolt in the Johannine gospel? ;)]

                      Strange that Zechariah could become high-priest, as
                      though he was from one of the four families, more
                      importantly, of Annas or Boethus (MG 2.3). This
                      historical anamoly might be an indicator that the MG
                      tradition/author is already tying Jesus and John back
                      into the priesthood, certainly something imaginable in
                      the Middle Ages. (Gotta give him credit, he recognizes
                      that the Beloved Disciple had to have been a priest to
                      have gotten into Caiaphas' residence the night before
                      a Festival)

                      3.29 The worship of Mary. Another indicator of the
                      author's hand? (as is the use of St. as in St. John)
                      The rise of a cult of Mary is not possible to
                      demonstrate prior to the fourth century (at the
                      earliest).

                      10.6 The measurement of the amount of water is off by
                      a HUGE amount. What does this mean?

                      Thanks for listening and letting me post.

                      Michael Hardin
                      michael1517@...
                      New York


                      --- kymhsm <khs@...> wrote:
                      > Dear Yuri,
                      >
                      > > Of course it's possible that the author of John
                      > used Genesis
                      > 1&2 as a > structure for his gospel from 1:1 -
                      > 20:29, although
                      > AFAIK this view is not > widely shared.
                      >
                      > True, it is not widely shared - not yet anyway. It
                      > is something that I
                      > have stumbled upon.
                      >
                      > >But I think here also our underlying
                      > presuppositions may >
                      > come into play. In my view, the gospels have some
                      > real historical
                      > events > as their basis.
                      >
                      > I am not suggesting that John did not use historical
                      > events. He
                      > did, however, parallel those events with the first
                      > two chapters of
                      > Genesis. Several examples may be useful. Jesus'
                      > baptism I
                      > have already explained. The two mentions of Adam's
                      > movement
                      > from outside to inside the garden are matched by
                      > Jesus' final
                      > entry into Jerusalem and his going to the garden
                      > (Gethsemane).
                      > Adam's deep sleep in the garden and the removal of
                      > his rib is
                      > matched by Jesus death (in a garden [19:41]) and his
                      > being
                      > pierced in the side. The presentation of Eve to Adam
                      > is
                      > paralleled by Mary Magdalene's (sole) encounter with
                      > Jesus (in
                      > the same garden - she thought he was the gardener
                      > [20:15, c.f.
                      > Gen 2:15]). Jesus' first word to her is "Woman" (cf.
                      > Gen 2:23;
                      > 'she shall be called woman'). John's acount implies
                      > that other
                      > women were down at the tomb (20:2 '...'we' do not
                      > know...') but
                      > he only mentions Mary because of his aligning his
                      > Gospel with
                      > Gen 1&2.
                      >
                      > >So I would not necessarily agree that the
                      > mythological > events
                      > from the OT would have overwhelmed the historical
                      > base of the >
                      > gospels to a very great degree.>
                      >
                      > The 'historical base' is not 'overwhelmed', but John
                      > has used the
                      > Genesis structure to in clude ideas additional to
                      > those in the
                      > plain text. He has shown two main things with this
                      > stucture.
                      > From Genesis 1 (Jn 1:1-11:44), that the Word who
                      > became flesh
                      > and dwelt among us, Jesus, was the one created all
                      > things (c.f.
                      > Jn 1:3) and, from Genesis 2 (Jn 11:45-20:29), to
                      > express a
                      > sublime First Adam / Second Adam theology - all the
                      > more
                      > sublime because it is the pre-Fall Adam with whom he
                      > is
                      > drawing the parallels.
                      >
                      > Sincerely,
                      >
                      > Kym Smith
                      > Adelaide
                      > South Australia
                      > khs@...
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
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                    • Yuri Kuchinsky
                      Dear Michael, Thank you for your reply. Some of the issues you ve raised are very complex, and they demand a separate extensive answer. Also, some of them are
                      Message 10 of 17 , Mar 1, 2002
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                        Dear Michael,

                        Thank you for your reply. Some of the issues you've raised are very
                        complex, and they demand a separate extensive answer. Also, some of them
                        are not really directly relevant to the Fourth Gospel, so perhaps Loisy-L
                        would be a better forum to discuss them. But here is, for now, a quick
                        reply to a couple of points you've raised.

                        On Fri, 1 Mar 2002, michael Hardin wrote:

                        ...

                        > Strange that Zechariah could become high-priest, as
                        > though he was from one of the four families, more
                        > importantly, of Annas or Boethus (MG 2.3). This
                        > historical anamoly might be an indicator that the MG
                        > tradition/author is already tying Jesus and John back
                        > into the priesthood, certainly something imaginable in
                        > the Middle Ages. (Gotta give him credit, he recognizes
                        > that the Beloved Disciple had to have been a priest to
                        > have gotten into Caiaphas' residence the night before
                        > a Festival)

                        The absence of the "Beloved Disciple" in the Magdalene Gospel, as well as
                        in the Complaint/Nicodemus Gospel (another very mysterious document as
                        found in ms. Pepys) has already been discussed extensively on this list.
                        You can find these discussions in the archives. But I'm not quite sure why
                        do you now say that BD was a priest. In the canonical version, he's only
                        known to the high priest (while MG lacks this detail).

                        > 10.6 The measurement of the amount of water is off by a HUGE amount.
                        > What does this mean?

                        I'm glad you've picked up on this important detail. Indeed, the Johannine
                        episode of "Turning Water Into Wine" is quite different in the Magdalene
                        Gospel in a number of respects. Among them, is the size of the water jugs.
                        In MG 10:6, they are 3 gallons, while in the canonical Jn 2:6 they are "20
                        or 30 gallons". Surely the Magdalene version seems more primitive, since
                        it appears to be less developed?

                        Best regards,

                        Yuri.

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

                        Whenever you find that you are on the side of the majority,
                        it is time to reform -=O=- Mark Twain
                      • Paul Schmehl
                        I am not convinced that shorter or less developed equates to antiquity. It could equate to a damaged exemplar, a lazy scribe, intentional shortening, and a
                        Message 11 of 17 , Mar 1, 2002
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                          I am not convinced that "shorter" or "less developed" equates to antiquity.
                          It could equate to a damaged exemplar, a lazy scribe, intentional
                          shortening, and a host of other possibilities. In an earlier post you
                          stated something to the effect that the "shorter reading rule" was an
                          accepted fact of TC. That "fact" is now being questioned, and I think there
                          are cases where the shortening is quite possibly deliberate. In any case, I
                          certainly don't think it's as cut and dried as you seem to think it is.

                          Paul Schmehl pauls@...
                          pschmehl@...
                          http://www.utdallas.edu/~pauls/

                          ----- Original Message -----
                          From: "Yuri Kuchinsky" <yuku@...>
                          To: <johannine_literature@yahoogroups.com>
                          Sent: Friday, March 01, 2002 3:08 PM
                          Subject: [John_Lit] Re: Jesus and JB in Jn
                          >
                          > I'm glad you've picked up on this important detail. Indeed, the Johannine
                          > episode of "Turning Water Into Wine" is quite different in the Magdalene
                          > Gospel in a number of respects. Among them, is the size of the water jugs.
                          > In MG 10:6, they are 3 gallons, while in the canonical Jn 2:6 they are "20
                          > or 30 gallons". Surely the Magdalene version seems more primitive, since
                          > it appears to be less developed?
                        • Yuri Kuchinsky
                          ... Well, Jeffery, I suppose this would depend on just how meaningful you think JB s baptism was. If one thinks of it as a mere formality, something that
                          Message 12 of 17 , Mar 2, 2002
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                            On Thu, 28 Feb 2002, Horace Jeffery Hodges wrote:

                            > Yuri Kuchinsky wrote:
                            >
                            > > Well, this is something that can be profitably
                            > > discussed. Namely, which version of this passage
                            > > tends to suggest a closer relationship between
                            > > John and Jesus. Can we say that (a) Jesus being
                            > > baptised by John suggests a closer relationship
                            > > between the two, or that (b) Jesus merely spending
                            > > some time with John suggests a closer relationship
                            > > between them? Myself, I vote for (a).
                            >
                            > Lots of people were baptized by John. I vote for time
                            > spent with him beyond the Jordan as indicative of a
                            > closer relationship.

                            Well, Jeffery, I suppose this would depend on just how meaningful you
                            think JB's baptism was. If one thinks of it as a mere formality, something
                            that required little in the way of preparation and commitment, then being
                            baptised by JB would be no big deal at all. But I think such a view of
                            JB's baptism may be a little oversimplified.

                            > > Also, I would like to hear your opinion as to why
                            > > the baptism of Jesus by John is absent in Jn. Do you
                            > > think it possible that some early version of
                            > > Jn in fact did feature Jesus being baptised by John?
                            >
                            > My opinion, which is not based upon a serious study of
                            > the issue, is that John's Gospel presents such a high
                            > Christology that it avoids the image of John baptizing
                            > Jesus.

                            I think it's quite reasonable to suppose that a very high Christology for
                            Jesus was something that was late in developing. So then don't you think
                            that this particular feature of Jn, i.e. absence of the scene where Jesus
                            is being baptised by JB, was also a late development?

                            > As for early versions of John, I don't know.

                            Well, I'm now proposing that there had indeed been an earlier version of
                            Jn that did feature Jesus being baptised by JB. So, in such a case, now we
                            may have identified some traces of that earlier text.

                            Regards,

                            Yuri.

                            Yuri Kuchinsky -=O=- http://www.styx.org/yuku/pepys/mgj.htm

                            "It is so much easier to assume than to prove; it is so much less painful
                            to believe than to doubt; there is such a charm in the repose of
                            prejudice, when no discordant voice jars upon the harmony of belief; there
                            is such a thrilling pang when cherished dreams are scattered, and old
                            creeds abandoned, that it is not surprising that men close their eyes to
                            the unwelcome light" -- W.E.H. Lecky (A History of Rationalism)
                          • Yuri Kuchinsky
                            ... Dear Paul, Could you please suggest some reason why the author of the Magdalene Gospel would have intentionally replaced 20 or 30 gallon jugs with 3
                            Message 13 of 17 , Mar 3, 2002
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                              On Fri, 1 Mar 2002, Paul Schmehl wrote:

                              > I am not convinced that "shorter" or "less developed" equates to
                              > antiquity. It could equate to a damaged exemplar, a lazy scribe,
                              > intentional shortening,

                              Dear Paul,

                              Could you please suggest some reason why the author of the Magdalene
                              Gospel would have intentionally replaced "20 or 30 gallon" jugs with "3
                              gallon" jugs?

                              > and a host of other possibilities. In an earlier post you stated
                              > something to the effect that the "shorter reading rule" was an
                              > accepted fact of TC. That "fact" is now being questioned, and I think
                              > there are cases where the shortening is quite possibly deliberate.
                              > In any case, I certainly don't think it's as cut and dried as you seem
                              > to think it is.

                              Actually, I'm in basic agreement with you here. While the "shorter reading
                              rule" is indeed a widely accepted rule of TC today, myself, I do see some
                              considerable limitations of this. In fact, recently I've been moving
                              closer to the Byzantine text supporters, who, of course, have challenged
                              this rule.

                              And yet, at the same time, this particular case of Jn 2:6 is not
                              necessarily relevant to this. Because here it's the size of the jugs that
                              is mostly in question, rather than the reading just being shorter or
                              longer.

                              Regards,

                              Yuri.

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

                              The goal proposed by Cynic philosophy is apathy, which is
                              equivalent to becoming God -=O=- Julian

                              > ----- Original Message -----
                              > From: "Yuri Kuchinsky" <yuku@...>
                              > To: <johannine_literature@yahoogroups.com>
                              > Sent: Friday, March 01, 2002 3:08 PM
                              > Subject: [John_Lit] Re: Jesus and JB in Jn
                              > >
                              > > I'm glad you've picked up on this important detail. Indeed, the Johannine
                              > > episode of "Turning Water Into Wine" is quite different in the Magdalene
                              > > Gospel in a number of respects. Among them, is the size of the water jugs.
                              > > In MG 10:6, they are 3 gallons, while in the canonical Jn 2:6 they are "20
                              > > or 30 gallons". Surely the Magdalene version seems more primitive, since
                              > > it appears to be less developed?
                            • Yuri Kuchinsky
                              On Thu, 28 Feb 2002, kymhsm wrote: [Yuri:] ... Kym, Still, I m wondering if the dependence on Genesis, that you re advocating, would have constituted a
                              Message 14 of 17 , Mar 3, 2002
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                                On Thu, 28 Feb 2002, kymhsm wrote:

                                [Yuri:]
                                > >So I would not necessarily agree that the mythological > events
                                > from the OT would have overwhelmed the historical base of the >
                                > gospels to a very great degree.>

                                > The 'historical base' is not 'overwhelmed', but John has used the
                                > Genesis structure to in clude ideas additional to those in the
                                > plain text. He has shown two main things with this stucture.
                                > >From Genesis 1 (Jn 1:1-11:44), that the Word who became flesh
                                > and dwelt among us, Jesus, was the one created all things (c.f.
                                > Jn 1:3) and, from Genesis 2 (Jn 11:45-20:29), to express a
                                > sublime First Adam / Second Adam theology - all the more
                                > sublime because it is the pre-Fall Adam with whom he is
                                > drawing the parallels.

                                Kym,

                                Still, I'm wondering if the dependence on Genesis, that you're advocating,
                                would have constituted a sufficient warrant to remove the mention of the
                                baptism of Jesus by John.

                                In other words, the baptism of Jesus by John seems to have been a real
                                historical event. So do you think that the Genesis motifs, alone, could
                                have been enough reason for masking this event in Jn?

                                So there seem to have been some other reasons for masking this event in
                                Jn...

                                Yuri.

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

                                The goal proposed by Cynic philosophy is apathy, which is
                                equivalent to becoming God -=O=- Julian
                              • kymhsm
                                Dear Yuri, ... advocating, would have constituted a sufficient warrant to remove the mention of the baptism of Jesus by John. ... real historical event.
                                Message 15 of 17 , Mar 3, 2002
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                                  Dear Yuri,

                                  > Still, I'm wondering if the dependence on Genesis, that you're
                                  advocating,> would have constituted a sufficient warrant to remove
                                  the mention of the > baptism of Jesus by John.
                                  >
                                  > In other words, the baptism of Jesus by John seems to have been a
                                  real > historical event. So do you think that the Genesis motifs,
                                  alone, could > have been enough reason for masking this event in Jn?>

                                  I do not think that John has masked JB's baptism of Jesus at all. It
                                  is just that he has not detailed the event. Rather, he has spoken of
                                  the *significance* of the event in identifying the Christ.

                                  The Genesis structure may have been sufficient reason not to detail
                                  it because that structure is built mostly upon the *events* of the
                                  gospel. For instance, the six days in which something new was created
                                  in Gen 1 are reflected by the six miracles or signs of Jn 2:1 -
                                  11:45. We are accostomed to thinking of seven signs but it seems that
                                  Jesus' walking on the water (while undoubtedly a sign for the
                                  apostles) does not bear the same significnce as the healings etc.

                                  On the other hand, John does include the event of Jesus' clearing of
                                  the temple without that affecting the structure, though he excludes
                                  it from the signs (and so from the Genesis structure) by placing it
                                  between the first two signs, both of which he nominates as such
                                  (2:11; 4:54).

                                  Sincerely,

                                  Kym Smith
                                  Adelaide
                                  South Australia
                                  khs@...
                                • Horace Jeffery Hodges
                                  ... For John the Baptist s disciples, I would expect more preparation and commitment associated with a baptism, but I doubt that the multitudes coming for
                                  Message 16 of 17 , Mar 3, 2002
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                                    Yuri Kuchinsky wrote:

                                    > Well, Jeffery, I suppose this would depend on just
                                    > how meaningful you
                                    > think JB's baptism was. If one thinks of it as a
                                    > mere formality, something
                                    > that required little in the way of preparation and
                                    > commitment, then being
                                    > baptised by JB would be no big deal at all. But I
                                    > think such a view of
                                    > JB's baptism may be a little oversimplified.

                                    For John the Baptist's disciples, I would expect more
                                    preparation and commitment associated with a baptism,
                                    but I doubt that the multitudes coming for baptism fit
                                    this. Simply referring to a baptism by John the
                                    Baptist is thus too little to base a strong view on. I
                                    still vote for time spent with John the Baptist beyond
                                    the Jordan as suggesting more.

                                    > I think it's quite reasonable to suppose that a very
                                    > high Christology for
                                    > Jesus was something that was late in developing. So
                                    > then don't you think
                                    > that this particular feature of Jn, i.e. absence of
                                    > the scene where Jesus
                                    > is being baptised by JB, was also a late
                                    > development?

                                    It's a reasonable position.

                                    > Well, I'm now proposing that there had indeed been
                                    > an earlier version of
                                    > Jn that did feature Jesus being baptised by JB. So,
                                    > in such a case, now we
                                    > may have identified some traces of that earlier
                                    > text.

                                    Maybe, but so far, I haven't been convinced by your
                                    posts because I have always seen other possible
                                    interpretations. Also, the MG really looks like a
                                    medieval harmonization based upon the four gospels and
                                    later Christian traditions.

                                    But, I admit that I haven't studied it closely. I
                                    doubt that I will due to lack of time and to my
                                    willingness to accept the standard scholarly position
                                    -- especially in cases where I lack time to develop
                                    the expertise needed for making an independent
                                    verification.

                                    Jeffery Hodges

                                    =====
                                    Assistant Professor Horace Jeffery Hodges
                                    Hanshin University (Korean Theological University)
                                    447-791 Kyunggido Osan-City
                                    Yangsandong 411
                                    South Korea

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                                  • Yuri Kuchinsky
                                    ... Dear Michael, The Magdalene Gospel is clearly not all of one piece, and there are substantial differences between different parts of MG. So, it really
                                    Message 17 of 17 , Mar 6, 2002
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                                      On Fri, 1 Mar 2002, michael Hardin wrote:

                                      > These would be my questions Yuri:
                                      >
                                      > 1) In that the MG text reflects
                                      > synchronization/harmonization of the canonical
                                      > gospels, in what textual tradition would a greek
                                      > 'retranslation' stand (what is presupposed)? Or are
                                      > there affinities with several textual traditions?

                                      Dear Michael,

                                      The Magdalene Gospel is clearly not all of one piece, and there are
                                      substantial differences between different parts of MG. So, it really seems
                                      like a compilation, or a sort of a synopsis, of various gospel texts.

                                      Many segments of MG look a lot like harmonisations of various single
                                      gospel texts. Yet other segments represent straight narrative from single
                                      gospels.

                                      In general, I would say that MG reflects Western text of the gospels. Of
                                      course Western text is a lot better attested in Old Latin and in Semitic
                                      languages than in Greek. Myself, I'm quite sceptical that the Greek text
                                      should always be seen as the most reliable.

                                      > 2) The prologue as an early christians hymn (sans the
                                      > references to JTB) needs no defending. But also a
                                      > hymn grounded in a midrash of Gen 1 (Borgen)? I think
                                      > so. Kym Smith's Genesis observations are intruiging
                                      > here.
                                      >
                                      > If one wishes to see an earlier than canonical Jesus
                                      > tradition ( as do many Thomas/Q questers), I am not
                                      > persuded that MG would fit until I had examined the
                                      > passion narrative. As a meta-narrative where does it
                                      > place the death of Jesus, before or after Passover?
                                      > This would be a strong indication of it's provinence
                                      > at least East/West.

                                      The Passion Narrative in MG is a very complex patchwork of various texts.
                                      There's actually not much harmonisation that goes on there. Passages from
                                      the Synoptics and from Jn are usually cited sequentially, and there seems
                                      to be quite a lot of redundancy and repetition. Which would confirm, at
                                      least in my view, that this is not a well developed gospel harmony, but
                                      rather a synopsis of the gospels. Essentially, I see MG as the earliest
                                      version of the Diatessaron.

                                      > The Johannine tradition is of far more historical
                                      > value than given by the present state of NT research

                                      Yes, you may well be right about this.

                                      > who seem to reflect Clement of Alexandria. Dodd &
                                      > Robinson have laid an excelent foundation in this
                                      > regard. This is not to say that the gospel was not
                                      > produced in stages, only to say that perhaps Kym Smith
                                      > is correct to observe that it was the events which
                                      > upon reflection were associated with the
                                      > 'mythical/prophetic' archtypes, not the other way
                                      > around. (It is hish to time to stop paying homage to
                                      > Bousset)
                                      >
                                      > Some quick thoughts:
                                      >
                                      > MG 1.3 sound definitely post-Nicean so if it is early
                                      > it is already coming under the corrector's hand.

                                      Well, I've always avoided dealing with the first chapter of MG, because
                                      it's so different from our standard opening of Jn, although being similar
                                      to it in some respects. There are also problems with exact translation of
                                      this passage. You may observe that my translation of this first chapter is
                                      not exactly literal, so what you think may be post-Nicean elements may
                                      also be just my translation.

                                      > Can you identify that hand?

                                      It's very difficult to say. As I say, the first chapter presents its own
                                      very special problems of translation and interpretation. It may well have
                                      been expanded at a later stage.

                                      > MG 1.4 'law & prophets', a Matthean phrase if there
                                      > ever was one [can we call this the Matthean
                                      > thunderbolt in the Johannine gospel? ;)]

                                      Again, this may just be my translation... Whenever one really wants to
                                      deal with such stylistic aspects, one really needs to go directly to the
                                      Middle English text. But other chapters of MG don't usually present so
                                      many problems as this first chapter.

                                      > Strange that Zechariah could become high-priest, as
                                      > though he was from one of the four families, more
                                      > importantly, of Annas or Boethus (MG 2.3).

                                      Boismard has already studied these passages in considerable detail, and he
                                      seems to find a lot of primitive material there (L'EVANGILE DE L'ENFANCE
                                      (LUC 1 - 2) SELON LE PROTO-LUC (Etudes bibliques 35), Paris, J. Gabalda,
                                      1997). Myself, I haven't dealt with these passages too much, and went on
                                      to other stuff.

                                      > 3.29 The worship of Mary. Another indicator of the
                                      > author's hand? (as is the use of St. as in St. John)
                                      > The rise of a cult of Mary is not possible to
                                      > demonstrate prior to the fourth century (at the
                                      > earliest).

                                      Well, I don't see more "worship of Mary" in MG, necessarily, than in the
                                      standard texts. But perhaps we should stick more with the Johannine
                                      passages in this discussion.

                                      All the best,

                                      Yuri.

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

                                      Whenever you find that you are on the side of the majority,
                                      it is time to reform -=O=- Mark Twain
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