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[John_Lit] Re: Did John know the synoptics?

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  • Maluflen@aol.com
    In a message dated 1/10/2000 3:14:02 AM Eastern Standard Time, panderso@georgefox.edu writes:
    Message 1 of 24 , Jan 10, 2000
      In a message dated 1/10/2000 3:14:02 AM Eastern Standard Time,
      panderso@... writes:

      << Luke departs from Mark at least three dozen times and sides with the
      Johannine tradition. Why? Luke apparently believes the Johannine
      traditon to be credible; therefore, Luke adds such details as the "right"
      ear cut off and Satan "entering" Judas, conflates such material as the
      catch of fish (into his calling narrative) and Peter's confession (John's
      "of God" with Mark's "the Christ") into his narrative, leaves out such
      material as a second feeding and second sea-crossing, alters Mark's
      tradition by making the anointing a foot anointing instead of a head
      anointing (an unlikely move otherwise) and placing Peter's confession
      after the other feeding (with John, a radical move, here!), adds
      traditional units such as the Mary and Martha story and the Emmaus
      appearance, and adds theological content such as Holy Spirit emphases and
      Jesus' concern for Samaritans and women. Is this traditional borrowing
      alluded to in Luke 1:2, where he says he draws material from eye witnesses
      and servants of the LOGOS? >>

      This all strikes me as a circular kind of argumentation. Luke is said to
      borrow from John, because John contains certain features that are found in
      Luke and not in the other Synoptics. Logically, all that can be deduced from
      this is that one OR the other Evangelist may have borrowed from the other, or
      had access to sources available to the other. In point of fact, when one
      reads Luke's Gospel as a dialectical reading and re-writing of Matthew, under
      Pauline influence (and of course always with an eye to OT parallels and
      background to Matthean texts as well) the above features are most naturally
      explained as coming out of Luke's head (and perhaps later influencing John).
      No need to connect what Luke writes in his prologue to the Johannine
      tradition either. LOGOS is the normal Lukan technical term for the Gospel
      message in Acts. And cf. Lk 8:11-12, where first "word of God" and then
      "word" are substituted for Matt's "logos tes basileias", [message of the
      kingdom]. Note that both Luke's original substitution (the Word of God) and
      his abbreviation thereof (the Word) are common designations for the Gospel
      preached by the Jerusalem apostles and Paul in Acts. It is also Pauline
      terminology (cf. 1 Thess 1:6; 2:13, etc.).

      Years ago I was impressed by the view that Luke may have borrowed from the
      Johannine tradition (it was half a centuray ago, and perhaps still is, the
      view of the great Catholic scholar Andre Feuillet, and it usually reflects a
      concern to bolster the historicity of details in the Lukan account). But more
      recently I have progressively moved toward seeing this as an unlikely
      position. It remains possible (Luke probably spent some time at Ephesus), but
      it always seems more likely to me that the literary influence was primarily
      in the reverse direction. One thing that has to be kept in mind is the fact
      that Luke is extremely creative in his use of the Matthean tradition - this,
      whether or not his creativity therewith has parallels in the Johannine
      tradition. Therefore, one should not assume that a departure of Luke from
      Matt (or Mark, as many of you would say) requires borrowing from the
      Johannine tradition as an explanation. It is usually fully comprehensible as
      theologically-literarily motivated. Implicit in my disagreement with the
      above expressed position is, I think, a fundamentally different understanding
      of Luke's project. I do not see Luke as interested in "credibility" in the
      sense of "correcting" the historical accuracy of details in his narratives,
      with respect to older accounts. Luke's project is primarily "theological"
      (one might say ideological) in character, and even the details of his
      narratives are more in the service of his theology than likely to be
      historically rooted or motivated. In his Gospel, Luke is in fact, in my view,
      doing theology in narrative. Among other things, he is attempting to
      reconcile the theology of the Jerusalem apostles (Matthew, Peter, etc.) with
      that of Paul and a theology of the Gentile mission. The basic story of Jesus
      is assumed to be known to Luke's audience already from Matthew. Of course it
      also needs to be said that an important part of Luke's "theology" is a
      theological understanding of history itself. In this sense, Luke is then
      intensely interested in "history", but in the broad sense of understanding
      and formalizing its major, divinely guided articulations.

      Leonard Maluf
    • Mark Goodacre
      ... Thanks for the bibliography. A couple more pieces of bibliog. on the question might be helpful: Adelbert Denaux (ed.), _John and the Synoptics_ (BETL 90;
      Message 2 of 24 , Jan 10, 2000
        On 7 Jan 00, at 13:49, Fred Guyette wrote:

        > Neirynck, F. "John and the Synoptics in Recent Commentaries."
        > Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanesium 1998, 74 (4): 386-397.

        Thanks for the bibliography. A couple more pieces of bibliog. on the question
        might be helpful:

        Adelbert Denaux (ed.), _John and the Synoptics_ (BETL 90; Leuven : Leuven
        University Press, 1992)

        It features articles by Neirynck & Goulder, among others, on the question of
        dependence.

        One recent book that argued for an independent John was:

        Lawrence M. Wills, The Quest of the Historical Gospel: Mark, John and the
        Origins of the Gospel Genre (London/ New York: Routledge, 1997)

        I recently had a review of it published in RBL:

        http://www.bookreviews.org/Reviews/0415150930.html

        Mark

        --------------------------------------
        Dr Mark Goodacre mailto:M.S.Goodacre@...
        Dept of Theology tel: +44 121 414 7512
        University of Birmingham fax: +44 121 414 6866
        Birmingham B15 2TT United Kingdom

        http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/goodacre
        The New Testament Gateway
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      • ejdanna@trapdoor.arvotek.net
        ... But then why write Mark at all, if Matt. and Lk. were already in existence? It seems easier to see them as an expansion of Mark than to see Mark as an
        Message 3 of 24 , Jan 10, 2000
          On Mon, 10 Jan 2000 Maluflen@... wrote:

          > In a message dated 1/10/2000 3:14:02 AM Eastern Standard Time,
          > panderso@... writes:
          >
          > << For whatever
          > reason, Matthew and Luke leave out several types of material in their
          > redactions of Mark >>
          >
          > "For whatever reason"...The fact that there is no GOOD reason for this ought
          > to make one suspect that Matt and Lk were written before Mark,

          But then why write Mark at all, if Matt. and Lk. were already in
          existence? It seems easier to see them as an expansion of Mark than to
          see Mark as an abbreviation of traditions that had already been solidified
          into written form. Notice also the places where Matt. and Luke smooth out
          some awkward Markan phrases, either to improve awkward grammar or clarify
          meaning. Surely this would not have been necessary if Mark had access to
          Matt. or Lk.?
          Elizabeth Danna
        • Maluflen@aol.com
          In a message dated 1/10/2000 9:53:20 AM Eastern Standard Time, ejdanna@trapdoor.arvotek.net writes:
          Message 4 of 24 , Jan 10, 2000
            In a message dated 1/10/2000 9:53:20 AM Eastern Standard Time,
            ejdanna@... writes:

            << "For whatever reason"...The fact that there is no GOOD reason for this
            ought
            > to make one suspect that Matt and Lk were written before Mark,

            But then why write Mark at all, if Matt. and Lk. were already in
            existence? It seems easier to see them as an expansion of Mark than to
            see Mark as an abbreviation of traditions that had already been solidified
            into written form. Notice also the places where Matt. and Luke smooth out
            some awkward Markan phrases, either to improve awkward grammar or clarify
            meaning. Surely this would not have been necessary if Mark had access to
            Matt. or Lk.? >>

            Dear Elizabeth,

            This, of course, raises the whole question of the Synoptic Problem. Though
            I am never adverse to reviewing the evidence for solutions to this problem
            with anyone, and from the ground up, I suspect that this is not the proper
            forum for such an exhilarating exercise. I perhaps should not have raised the
            question in the first place, but if you or anyone else wishes to discuss it
            with me off-list, I should be delighted to oblige (to the extent that this is
            compatible with my teaching schedule and responsibilities). It goes without
            saying that my remark to which you are responding should be taken to imply
            that, having carefully considered all the standard arguments in favor of
            Markan priority, I consider them to be less compelling than arguments for the
            contrary position.

            Leonard Maluf
          • Paul Anderson
            ... I don t imagine we ll fix these differences between our perspectives in this discussion group (nor would it be appropriate to attempt), but as you know,
            Message 5 of 24 , Jan 10, 2000
              johannine_literature@egroups.com writes:
              >It goes without
              >saying that my remark to which you are responding should be taken to
              >imply
              >that, having carefully considered all the standard arguments in favor of
              >Markan priority, I consider them to be less compelling than arguments for
              >the
              >contrary position.
              >
              >Leonard Maluf

              I don't imagine we'll fix these differences between our perspectives in
              this discussion group (nor would it be appropriate to attempt), but as you
              know, such is a major factor in our disagreement, Leonard.

              Thanks so much,

              PA

              Paul N. Anderson
              Associate Professor of Biblical and Quaker Studies
              George Fox University
              Newberg, OR 97132
              503-554-2651
            • Paul Anderson
              ... Not so fast, Leonard, I actually think there were good reasons, or at least explicable ones. This is an attempt to be generous beyond particular
              Message 6 of 24 , Jan 10, 2000
                johannine_literature@egroups.com writes:
                ><< For whatever
                > reason, Matthew and Luke leave out several types of material in their
                > redactions of Mark >>
                >
                >"For whatever reason"...The fact that there is no GOOD reason for this

                Not so fast, Leonard, I actually think there were good reasons, or at
                least explicable ones. This is an attempt to be generous beyond
                particular explanations which I outline in my book. If you get a chance
                to engage chapters 5-10 in my book and appendix 8, I'd appreciate your
                response.

                Thanks so much,

                Paul

                Paul N. Anderson
                Associate Professor of Biblical and Quaker Studies
                George Fox University
                Newberg, OR 97132
                503-554-2651
              • Maluflen@aol.com
                In a message dated 1/10/2000 3:27:40 PM Eastern Standard Time, panderso@georgefox.edu writes:
                Message 7 of 24 , Jan 10, 2000
                  In a message dated 1/10/2000 3:27:40 PM Eastern Standard Time,
                  panderso@... writes:

                  << ><< For whatever
                  > reason, Matthew and Luke leave out several types of material in their
                  > redactions of Mark >>
                  >
                  >"For whatever reason"...The fact that there is no GOOD reason for this

                  Not so fast, Leonard, I actually think there were good reasons, or at
                  least explicable ones. This is an attempt to be generous beyond
                  particular explanations which I outline in my book. If you get a chance
                  to engage chapters 5-10 in my book and appendix 8, I'd appreciate your
                  response.>>

                  I guess I would put what I am trying to say this way. What most consider to
                  be major theological/literary influences of the synoptic tradition on John
                  (so I am not thinking here of things like number of denarii or cost of
                  ointment) are usually thought to be derived by John from Mark, or "Markan
                  tradition". The ONLY reason the connection is made to Mark, in these cases,
                  rather than to Matt, is because of the theory of Markan priority. In other
                  words, the particular influences so identified could, I think, usually be
                  demonstrated, from a synchronic perspective (i.e., without reference to a
                  diachronic source theory), to be in fact more characteristic of Matthew than
                  of Mark or Luke. To test the validity of my point, perhaps you would be so
                  kind as to begin the process by naming one or two things you would consider
                  to be major theological influences of the Synoptic tradition on John, and
                  then I would have to demonstrate, if I could, that the point in question is
                  in fact more Matthean than Markan, in terms of synchronic analysis of the two
                  Evangelists' respective texts.

                  Leonard Maluf
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