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Re: [Synoptic-L] The same Aramaic word "cleanse"?

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  • Ron Price
    ... *RP: Indeed. This is where I think you Farrer adherents understate your case. I ve done a lot of work on the structure of all the major NT documents, and
    Message 1 of 4 , May 17, 2005
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      Ken Olson wrote:

      > It is unlikely that a hypothetical source
      > could have so many attendant difficulties as to render it impossible, but it
      > might well have so many difficulties as to make it much less attractive than
      > other options.

      *RP:
      Indeed. This is where I think you Farrer adherents understate your case.
      I've done a lot of work on the structure of all the major NT documents, and
      by comparison the Q structure looks incredible for a stand-alone document.

      > *KO:
      >
      > I was paraphrasing Tuckett's statement "The situation in Q 11.41 seems to
      > involve faulty _hearing_ of an Aramaic text _dakku_ for _zakku_: there is
      > little evidence that the letters _daleth_ and _zain_ would have been
      > confused at this period" (Tuckett, Q and the History, p. 90).

      *RP:
      Your paraphrase missed the "would have been", so my reply that there must
      have been *some* evidence was an invalid deduction. My apologies.

      > *KO:
      > There is still the problem of why, in a sequence
      > about cleansing which used the word cleanse before and after this occasion,
      > the scribe heard or read the wrong word here and it didn't occur to him to
      > check.

      *RP:
      I've already answered this one: at that point Luke saw what he wanted to
      see.

      >> RP: I agree that origin of the plural is not obvious. But the meaning "what
      >> is
      >> inside" could have derived from the same Aramaic word (whatever that was)
      >> which Matt 23:26 translates as TO ENTOS.<<

      > *KO:
      >
      > So you don't actually know of any scholar competent in Aramaic who has put
      > forward a detailed argument for how Luke derived the plural TA ENONTA from
      > an Aramaic source, but are speculating that this might possibly be the case?

      *RP:
      No. I'm saying I can see where the *root* of the word came from, but not
      where the *plural* came from.

      >> RP: As a master of the Greek language eager to convince both his patron and
      >> his readers, Luke rarely wrote anything that doesn't make complete sense...
      >
      > *KO:
      >
      > It's that 'complete sense' thing that gets me. Luke is a sophisticated
      > writer and theologian and wrote many things that are difficult to understand
      > and on which interpreters disagree.

      *RP:
      Perhaps my choice of phrase was inaccurate. Luke rarely wrote anything that
      looks like nonsense, and our disagreements represent differing judgements as
      to whether certain texts look nonsensical.

      > *KO:
      >
      > You are right that TA ENONTA in Lk.
      > 11.41 is a crux for translators. So is Luke's ENTOJ in 17.21. Grammatically,
      > the end of 17.21 ought to mean: "the kingdom of God is _inside_ you".
      > Currently, more interpreters probably favor the understanding: "the kingdom
      > of God is _among_ you". I think they're probably wrong. It seems to me that
      > Luke's conception of the things inside a man is a complex problem and not
      > one to be pushed aside as a mistranslation. I do not think I fully grasp
      > what Luke is getting at, but it seems to me that taking these two texts and
      > Lk. 6.45 together is a step in the right direction. To be very reductive,
      > Luke is saying: 'the man who has the kingdom of God in his heart expresses
      > it through goodwill to his neighbors'. Or something like that.

      *RP:
      Perhaps so. But it could at the same time be a deliberate but clumsy
      distortion of the well-attested "The kingdom of God is near", replacing near
      in time by near in place in order to further dampen enthusiasm for an
      imminent return of Jesus.

      > *KO: > The same principle applies to the alleged mistranslation in Lk. 11.48.
      > .......
      >
      > The sense is that the children have
      > collaborated with their ancestors in the deaths of the prophets. The
      > ancestors, for their part, performed the actual killings, while the
      > children, for their part, dug the graves.

      *RP:
      This appears to assume that Luke thought it reprehensible to dig the
      prophets' graves (or build their tombs). The nearest NT analogy that springs
      to mind is Joseph of Arimathea. But he is viewed with respect by all the
      gospel writers, not least by Luke himself who calls Joseph "a good and
      righteous man".

      Your subsequent exposition about Luke [snipped] is about building idols and
      building the Temple. Even if it is true as you argue, that Luke was critical
      of the Temple, it's not clear to me that the argument carries over to tombs.
      Notwithstanding Lk 9:60a "Leave the dead to bury their own dead" (which I
      take to be a typical example of hyperbole taken from the early sayings
      source), Jews and early Christians alike had a high respect for tombstones.

      >> RP: Because there are several candidate cases for mistranslation, Occam's
      >> razor
      >> can't be applied to this case in isolation.

      > *KO:
      > ....... As it happens, the subsidiary arguments are even worse
      > than thi one and have been dealt with, so Occam is hardly being applied in
      > isolation.

      *RP:
      What I meant was that it would only need the verification of a single
      candidate mistranslation to confirm the existence of the Aramaic source, at
      which point the source would no longer be hypothetical. But even this is not
      needed. The source did exist: Papias wrote about it. The effect of this is
      that individual mistranslation arguments should not need to be as strong as
      they would have needed to be had there been no external evidence for the
      existence of the source.

      Ron Price

      Derbyshire, UK

      Web site: http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/index.htm


      Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
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