Re: [John_Lit] Jesus and the Horse
- Bill Bullin replies to Jeffrey Gibson:
I really appreciate you bringing this web site to my attention.
> Have a look here for a discussion of the background of this and other"fakes".
I am going to have to give both it and Wieland's site some serious thought.
My initial response is that Wieland's site touches on the kind of genuine
early traditions that I have encountered in Ray Pritz Nazarene Jeish
Christianity, Brill, (1988); and A.F. J. Klijn, Jewish Christian Gospel
Tradition, Brill, (1992), both solid works or high repute.
A man I well respect, and I, exchanged proverbs about a year ago. The one he
gave me was "Walked towards it slowly", that seems good advice but I am
determined to get to the bottom of the relationship between 4G and
Gnosticism if it is the last thing I do! I have set out something of a
program of research however and the mule account and its origins may need to
wait until I face the Synoptic problem head on. I do think it is
methodologically valuable to distinguish between history; theology and
spirituality although the three are sometimes virtually inseparable,
My immediate task is to find a suitable 'thank you' for you.
I do not know if you are familiar with the Latin Rotas Word Square, dating
from before Pompeii's destruction in 79CE but if you are, then you might
find the following a worthy gift. I found it through a tiny footnote in an
article given to me by the Curator of the Corinium Museum where one of the
early British examples of the Square is kept. The footnote referred to
correspondence in the Times Newspaper which I tracked down in the British
Library's Newspaper Department. It relates to discussion about the Rotas
Square between Chief Rabbi Moses Gaster and a Revd. T. D. Hickes and
E.A.W.Budge the latter was then, (1929), keeper of the British Museum Middle
Eastern aquisitions. As you probably know the letters of the Latin Square
can be re-worked into a Latin cross or indeed an X to form a double
'Paternoster' with two additional A's and O's which some have considered
relate to the Alpha-Omega symbolism of the Apocalypse of John. The debate
between the three men related to early Jewish and Samaritan amulets,
although tefillin iserts is perhaps a more useful term. Gaster was an expert
on Samaritan amulets and left over a thousand Hebrew manuscripts to the
British Museum. They were catalogued in Hebrew by N. Allory and D.S.
Lewinger in Hebrew in 1960 and there are some hand notes in English. Gaster
was clear that the Samaritan amulets went back to the 1st or at latest c.
In all events the scholars considered the twenty five letters in terms of a
magic number square and related it to inserts bearing the divine Name. We
should recall that the Shema is composed of six words of 25 letters in
total. The exciting thing is that in the five by five magic palindrome
number square opposite squares, when added, equal 26 whilst the 25
sub-squares are enclosed in the larger square, again yielding 26. To cut a
long story very short, my research suggests that the Square originates with
the Church in Rome and with its Jewish Christians who, presumably had
translated the Lord's Prayer into Latin, or at least its title. When all the
detailed arguments, nuanced debates and objections are worked through, which
I have more or less done, I think we are left with what was once a tefillin
insert alluding to the opening words of the Matthean Prayer / Didache, set
in a palindrome YHWH number framework, alluding to A-O symbolism, set within
'wheels within wheels'. I have found a very similar Latin Square dating from
just about the time of Constantine's church building program, found in a
North African church: it contains letters that, when read according to later
Jwish cabbalistic squares, reads SANCTA ECLESIA, flowing out from a central
square. The upshot is that I think we have sound archaeological evidence for
the Lord's Prayer dating to about the time of Claudius' expulsion of the
Jews from Rome and the dispute over CHRISTOS as recorded twice, not once as
most scholars repeat. The upshot is either that Michael Goulder's
self-contained, ingenious and thus far inpenetratably sound theory of the
Lord's Prayer's origins is falsified, or else Matthew's Gospel was composed
much earlier than in generally assumed. A late date for the Prayer's
composition by the Matthean evangelist cannot stand. Goulder's theory is
entirely self-consistent but fails to fit the wider circumstances. This is
clearly not the list to continue this issue but it does have a bearing on
Johannine Priority, the Interpretation of the Parable of the Sower and
possibly an underlying Lord's Prayer lurking behind John 17 with its word
count that relates to the gematria of the vocative PATER and six uses of the
word perhaps relating to an underlying ABBA, a palindrome word (1+2+2+1=6).
Thanks once again and SHALOM / SALIM.
Bill Bullin (Private Student, East Sussex).