Re: Was[hy] Irony: "Witness" in John (part 2)
- Dear Joe C.,
Sorry for such a long delay but I have been away and there have
been some serious distractions. As will be clear, I have also
decided that there is little value in me being too involved with this
discussion. That does not mean that there is not some value in
your continuing your investigation, I think there is, it is just that I
will not be much help for you.
<<<In the FG, "witness" is more than being there; it also includes
a kind of being in and engaging the moment, with an eye toward
horizons of change.>>>
I agree with this. However, as we are both coming from different
directions, I am not sure that agreeing and/or countering each
other is of much value. I think that your pursuit of the idea of
witness in John is reasonable but my use of the term is only
concerned with the authors of the gospel.
When asked initially about the writers of the gospel, I wrote:
"What constitutes a witness would be similar to the one called
for to replace Judas in Acts 1:15f. In the first instance there are
the apostles who had witnessed the whole of Jesus ministry
i.e. those still alive in 68 (when I reckon the gospel was written) -
and other eyewitnesses who had been part of Jesus' ministry
perhaps not all of it and who had been involved in the witness
of the early Church."
There was probably no need to go to Acts, the FG itself states:
"Now Jesus did many other signs **in the presence of the
disciples,** which are not written in this book; but these are
written " (20:30-31)
Surely the implication here is that those things (signs) that *are
written* were, like the *many other signs*, done in the presence
of the disciples / apostles
As I have said, the idea of `witness' in the FG as you are
exploring is not of direct concern of mine. While I do not wish to
engage in a long discussion on it, there are a couple of
comments that I could make about your two posts.
The formerly blind man was certainly a witness to Jesus, but
was he a contributor to the gospel? We do not know. The
Muratorian Fragment and Clement of Alexandria seem to be
saying that some of those who did contribute to it were among
the disciples who questioned Jesus at the beginning of that
pericope and who though not mentioned witnessed the
unfolding of the events.
About Mary Magdelene's failure to look into the tomb and her
conclusion that Jesus' body had been taken away only on the
evidence that the stone had been moved is inadequate. We may
not be told that she looked into the tomb but it is unreasonable to
assume that she came to the conclusion she did when no one
looked into it. Either Mary did and we are not told or one or
more of those with her did (i.e. `*we* don't know where they have
put him' 20:2).
I also wonder if your suggestion that the `radiant "white"
garments' were `a transformation of the burial clothes' is not a
little fanciful, whether you intend it to be literal or symbolic.