Re: [John_Lit] Imagery in John: Flesh and Blood
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----- Original Message -----
From: "Yuri Kuchinsky" <yuku@...>
Sent: Thursday, July 25, 2002 1:46 PM
Subject: Re: [John_Lit] Imagery in John: Flesh and Blood
> On Tue, 23 Jul 2002, fmmccoy wrote:
> > A date of 135 or later, ISTM, is implausible. Isn't there even an
> > actual fragment of GJohn in our possession that likely dates c. 125?
> You must be talking about P52 now. But P52 is irrelevant to my thesis, and
> for two reasons. First, because what I'm actually suggesting is that these
> _verses_ were added after 135 CE. Thus, at this time, I'm not really
> talking about dating the whole gospel as such. In other words, even
> assuming that, by some unusual miracle of palaeography, it could be
> _absolutely confirmed_ that P52 must date to exactly 125 CE, this still
> wouldn't affect my argument in any big way...
> And second, because there's still some considerable doubt about dating
> P52. As I've posted to this list before, it's been recently dated as late
> as the second half of 2c. Thus, in such a case, it's completely irrelevant
> to my thesis.
> And so, what I'm offering is a very simple and logical thesis that
> explains the evidence in the most economical way, and doesn't resort to
> accusing the disciples of Jesus of misunderstanding their Master.
Yuri, do you have any manuscript evidence supporting your hypothesis that
these verses weren't added to John until c. 135?
Also, I'm unfamiliar with your ideas about how GJohn evolved into the
version we have today, and I would think that many John Lit. posters aren't
familiar with them either, so, could you provide us with your proposed
chronology of how GJohn evolved from its earliest version to the version we
> As for your introducing Paul into this discussion, I think this would tend
> to create as many problems as it might solve. After all, it's not at all
> clear that Jn depends on the letters of Paul. Indeed, the connections
> between Paul and Jn, even if they exist, are quite problematic.
> As to Philo, frankly, I wouldn't be much surprised if those who produced
> Jn were aware of his ideas in some way. But if you were interested in
> pursuing this line of enquiry, I would think that the later dating of Jn
> would be rather advantageous for you, no?
One of the points I have been trying to make in the course of several recent
posts is that there might have been a generic schema circulating around
Jewish circles in the first century CE which included a masculine second God
figure (variously named Logos, Memra, Son of God, Son of Man, Christ, etc.);
a Wisdom-type figure (variously named Wisdom, Spirit, Knowledge, etc.); the
idea of a spiritual food, consisting of the words, that is, as a unity,
personified in the second God figure; the idea of a spiritual drink
consisting of the Wisdom-type figure; and a fundamental division of a human
being into corporeal body/flesh and an incorporeal inner self that finds
expression in both the teachings of Philo and Pauline thought, especially as
expressed in the Corinthian correspondence, and that might be applicable to
much of John 6. The question of literary dependency (if any) between Philo,
Paul and the author John is another issue altogether. Certainly, if we are
dealing with some generic schema being widely propogated under various
guises, there is no need to postulate that the author(s) of John knew of the
teachings of either Paul or Philo in order to explain his/her/their
familiarity with this generic schema.
As I pointed out in one or two of these recent posts, much of this generic
schema is also found in the Jewish apocryphal work, Joseph and Asenath (JA):
with Joseph being, as Son of God, the second God figure, with the honey comb
being the spiritual food consisting of the words, and with the cup of
immortality being the spiritual drink of the Wisdom-type figure.
In this regard, JA also contains (VII) a reference to an annointment with
"the blessed unction of incorruption". This involves the Holy Spirit, for,
soon thereafter, it is prayed that God "quicken her (i.e., Asenath), and
renew her with Thy Holy Spirit". This annointment that is a renewal by the
Holy Spirit is reminiscent of the sealing (with the
Spirit?) in both II Cor 1:22 and John 6:27 and with the discussion on the
rebirth by the Spirit in John 3. Perhaps, then, some sort of
annointing/baptizing/sealing by the Wisdom-type figure is also an integral
part of this proposed generic schema.
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