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Re: [Synoptic-L] Walking stick or Shepherd's staff : the priority of Mark

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  • John Lupia
    ... I agree with you on this, Leonard. However, I think the historical statements of Jesus are relevant. After analysis (not given here) it is clear they are
    Message 1 of 9 , Jun 30, 2005
      --- Maluflen@... wrote:

      > In a message dated 6/30/2005 9:46:58 AM Eastern
      > Daylight Time,
      > rickr2889@... writes:
      >
      > > I cannot see the logic in assuming that the
      > evangelist
      > > would imply that Jesus refused to allow the
      > disciples
      > > to take a walking stick. It makes no sense at all.
      > >
      >
      > It is the logic of missionary radicalism. And it is
      > far more probable,
      > therefore, that the texts proscribing are older than
      > that which allows a staff. They
      > account for the mention of the staff in the first
      > place (as part of a list of
      > things the missionaries are to do without). Mark's
      > text is a late pastoral
      > adaptation of older missionary material. He wishes
      > to establish an implicit link
      > between the apostles who were sent out, and the
      > gospel narrator, who is
      > orally addressing an already Christian community in
      > Rome, and who, as their pastor,
      > wears sandals and carries a staff. What Jesus is
      > likely to have said at the
      > historical level is not relevant to this discussion.
      >

      I agree with you on this, Leonard. However, I think
      the historical statements of Jesus are relevant.
      After analysis (not given here) it is clear they are
      reflected in the first Gospel of Luke.

      Matthew adds the prohibition about sandals which Luke
      was silent on. Discalced missionaries without staves
      is a very primitive portrait of the earliest apostolic
      mission when they were sent by Jesus during his
      ministry. The Markan portrait is as you suggest, a
      later image directed to a later Church.

      Mt's silence on no bread is a poor read since he
      implies clearly bread is to be their payment for
      preaching, good works and healing the sick and
      possessed. No bread is implicit.

      Mt's elaboration on no gold or silver is taken from
      Luke-Acts 3:6 about no gold or silver, and Luke –Acts
      20:33 not coveting gold, silver or clothing. Mt 10:9
      adds the phrase no money in your belts copied later by
      Mk 6:8. The money belf is the soudarion worn with the
      sindon. This is the Jewish tallit with its matching
      sash. Lk is silent about this specific Jewish garb by
      not getting into details the later writers thought
      important for various reasons. This does not mean Lk
      does not have the twelve wearing their tallitot. This
      would have been understood as given to Lk's Jewish
      audience as well as Theophilus, the high priest in
      Jerusalem to whom he addresses his Gospel.

      For the preaching and healing mission only Mt mentions
      raising the dead. Mt was stating that Christ gave the
      apostolic Church his full power as an early Church
      theological theaching.

      For healing Mk 6:13 adds they anointed with oil. This
      clearly establishes a very late writing and an early
      reference to the sacrament of the anointing of the
      sick. This is cited as a ritual in Jas 5:4. Lk 10:34
      mentions the medical practice of placing wine and oil
      on the wounds in the parable of the Good Samaritan.
      However, Church sacramental use of sacred oil with no
      wine is to be applied to the sick with prayers for
      their healing.

      Mt's prohibition to preach and heal outside of the
      lost sheep of the house of Israel is his response to
      Lk 9:6 "they departed and went through the villages,
      preaching the gospel and healing everywhere." that
      lent itself to be misconstrued as literally
      everywhere. So Mt focuses on the terrain that the
      earlier Gospel left ambiguous and open to
      misinterpretation. Mt borrows the Johannine sheep
      motif as in Mt 10:6,16;15:24 and eight other verses
      that includes the lost sheep parable also found in Lk:
      see Mt 7:15;9:36;12:11,12;18:12;25:32,33;26:31. Mk
      14:27 repeats Mt 26:31.

      Mt adds that Jesus warns of condemnation those who
      reject the twelve. Jesus warns the twelve they are
      sheep sent out among wolves. (cf Jn 10) He counsels
      the twelve to “be wise as serpents and innocent as
      doves.” The cunning serpent is mentioned in 2 Co
      11:2. The metaphor is early Church language of the 2nd
      -3 rd decade post Easter.

      Best regards,
      John N. Lupia, III

      John N. Lupia, III
      Beachwood, New Jersey 08722 USA
      Fax: (732) 349-3910
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/
      God Bless America



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    • Maluflen@aol.com
      In a message dated 6/30/2005 9:43:45 PM Eastern Daylight Time, ... I was not making a general statement about the relevancy of the historical statements of
      Message 2 of 9 , Jul 1, 2005
        In a message dated 6/30/2005 9:43:45 PM Eastern Daylight Time, jlupia2@... writes:

        I agree with you on this,  Leonard. However, I think
        the historical statements of Jesus are relevant.



          I was not making a general statement about the relevancy of the historical statements of Jesus; my frame of reference, rather, was the discussion of the relative antiquity of the three Synoptic texts we have in front of us. In this discussion, it is not relevant to psychologize about what the historical Jesus would likely have said.

          But this raises an interesting question in its own realm. I think it is fairly uncontroversial to state that some sayings of Jesus reported in our gospels have a good chance of going back, substantially, to the historical Jesus, and others do not. I would like to suggest that the missionary discourse in the Synoptics does not. There are all kinds of indications -- in Matthew, the original account -- that the words are formulated and spoken into the present of the Gospel communication event itself. Jesus is speaking here as 'the Lord of the harvest" (Matt 9:38) who is sending his laborers into his harvest. Speaking for Jesus here is the evangelist himself (a "prophet" -- see Matt 10:41 -- in this sense). It is extremely important to note that in Matthew's text the words spoken by Jesus on this occasion are not followed by a report of the disciples going out on a mission, as a past event, and as we find in Luke and Mark (Mark even has a full-blown "Acts of the Apostles" in 6:13).

        This interpretation would imply that the words in Matt 10 do not go all the way back to the historical Jesus, but they do go back to an extremely early moment in the story of the church -- the time when the twelve disciples ruled over and spoke authoritatively to a renewed Israel. The challenge is issued to Matthew's contemporaries that they are to obey the apostles, and thereby obey Jesus and God (the shaliah concept). Matt 10:40 is very pointed and very important in this respect: "He who receives you receives me and he who receives me receives the one who sent me". That "receiving" means or at least includes primarily "hearing" is suggested by the parallelism of phrases in the negatively formulated Matt 10:14.

        It is also extremely significant that in Luke's Gospel these pointed words are not spoken to the twelve. By Luke's time, the twelve are no longer the voice of Christ and of God for the Gospel recipients. Instead, "the Lord" (Lk 10:1: not the historical Jesus) speaks directly to the group of the seventy (most likely representing the new missionary movement of Paul and his companions), and to THEM he directs the Lord's words: "he who hears you, hears me...." (Lk 10:16). I have also shown that Luke has Paul and the second generation of missionaries (represented here by the child) in mind in 9:48, where we find another form of the words spoken in Matt 10:40: "whoever receives this child in my name receives me..."
        See my article: "The Least Among All of You is the Great One": Lk 9:46-48 in the Light of the Two-Gospel Hypothesis", in "Imaginer la Theologie Catholique" -- Melanges offerts a Ghislain Lafont (Rome 2000, and excuse my lack of proper French accents). The question in the disciples' mind in Lk 9:46 should be translated: "who might be greater than they".

        Leonard Maluf
        Blessed John XXIII National Seminary
        Weston, MA

      • Richard Richmond
        John N. Lupia wrote: For healing Mk 6:13 adds they anointed with oil. This clearly establishes a very late writing and an early reference to the sacrament of
        Message 3 of 9 , Jul 1, 2005
          John N. Lupia wrote:

          For healing Mk 6:13 adds they anointed with oil. This
          clearly establishes a very late writing and an early
          reference to the sacrament of the anointing of the
          sick. This is cited as a ritual in Jas 5:4. Lk 10:34
          mentions the medical practice of placing wine and oil
          on the wounds in the parable of the Good Samaritan.
          However, Church sacramental use of sacred oil with no
          wine is to be applied to the sick with prayers for
          their healing.

          Actually anointing the sick with oil is a very old
          pratice and if anything comfirms that the commission
          of the twelve is not a post resurrection event. The
          Essene communtiy at Qumran was established long before
          the New Testament period and did teach about the
          Twelve men establishing a new Israel. They also
          annointed the sick with oil.

          The book of acts tells us that Peter found it necessar
          to replace Judas which is a clear indication that the
          official position and commission of the Twelve had
          already been established. The discourse given by Peter
          points to the time of the Baptism of John as the
          beginning. In choosing a replacement for Judas his
          criteria is to choose someone that had been with the
          movement since the Baptism of John.

          The book of James (which many hold to be the oldest of
          the epistles) confirms the practice of anointing with
          oil and as I pointed out the shepherds staff goes back
          to Psalm 23. You offer no evidence whatever to support
          your position that Mark did not intend the staff of a
          shepherd. And again all of the issues involved in the
          commission are present in Paul's letters written
          between 40 and 50 CE. According to Mark the
          commissioning of the twelve took place before the
          death of John the Baptist. Since he is about 2000
          years closer to the event I tend to believe him unless
          there is strong evidence to the contrary.

          I am curious as to when you would date the Gospel of
          Mark. I date it around 74 CE and would hardly consider
          anything at that point late with regard to the
          development of the church.

          Rick Richmond


          Rick Richmond rickr2889@...



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        • John Lupia
          ... Mk was probably composed on or about the 50th anniversary of Easter, c. 80-83 AD. A half century of early Church development is a considerable period of
          Message 4 of 9 , Jul 1, 2005
            --- Richard Richmond <rickr2889@...> wrote:

            > I am curious as to when you would date the Gospel of
            > Mark. I date it around 74 CE and would hardly
            > consider
            > anything at that point late with regard to the
            > development of the church.

            Mk was probably composed on or about the 50th
            anniversary of Easter, c. 80-83 AD. A half century of
            early Church development is a considerable period of
            time for theology, liturgy, hierarchy, new
            ecclesiastical community foundations, and ecumenical
            and diplomatic relationships with non-Christians and
            factions to have developed. These developments are
            found in the text of Mk for the discerning reader.

            Best regards,
            John N. Lupia, III

            John N. Lupia, III
            Beachwood, New Jersey 08722 USA
            Fax: (732) 349-3910
            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/
            God Bless America

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          • Maluflen@aol.com
            In a message dated 7/1/2005 1:28:45 PM Eastern Daylight Time, ... Even if your premise is correct, your logic is silly here. It confirms nothing of the sort.
            Message 5 of 9 , Jul 1, 2005
              In a message dated 7/1/2005 1:28:45 PM Eastern Daylight Time, rickr2889@... writes:

              Actually anointing the sick with oil is a very old
              pratice and if anything comfirms that the commission
              of the twelve is not a post resurrection event.


              Even if your premise is correct, your logic is silly here. It "confirms" nothing of the sort.



              The Essene communtiy at Qumran was established long before
              the New Testament period and did teach about the
              Twelve men establishing a new Israel. They also
              annointed the sick with oil.


              And there is nothing in Mark's Gospel that suggests that its author sees the twelve men chosen by Jesus as having anything to do with a new Israel. Other than in the rather routine reference in 12:29 Mark doesn't even mention Israel, old or new. This central concept and context in which Jesus and his immediate disciples worked and functioned seems no longer to be of interest in Mark's Gentile Christian community. Israel is of course a fundamentally important concept throughout the work of both Matthew and Luke.

              Leonard Maluf
              Blessed John XXIII National Seminary
              Weston, MA
            • John Lupia
              ... I have no reason to doubt the authenticity and veracity of the Gospels for any of Jesus statements found in any of them. I see no need to appeal to
              Message 6 of 9 , Jul 3, 2005
                --- Maluflen@... wrote:

                > In a message dated 6/30/2005 9:43:45 PM Eastern
                > Daylight Time,
                > jlupia2@... writes:
                >
                > > I agree with you on this, Leonard. However, I
                > think
                > > the historical statements of Jesus are relevant.
                >
                >
                > I was not making a general statement about the
                > relevancy of the historical
                > statements of Jesus; my frame of reference, rather,
                > was the discussion of the
                > relative antiquity of the three Synoptic texts we
                > have in front of us. In this
                > discussion, it is not relevant to psychologize about
                > what the historical
                > Jesus would likely have said.

                I have no reason to doubt the authenticity and
                veracity of the Gospels for any of Jesus' statements
                found in any of them. I see no need to appeal to
                skepticism and undermine the value of the texts, or
                give them a value that undermines their integrity and
                authority. They are, after all, all we have to go on
                and work with.


                > But this raises an interesting question in its own
                > realm. I think it is
                > fairly uncontroversial to state that some sayings of
                > Jesus reported in our
                > gospels have a good chance of going back,
                > substantially, to the historical Jesus,
                > and others do not.

                You are welcome to your opinion, which I do not hold.

                I would like to suggest that the
                > missionary discourse in the
                > Synoptics does not.

                I believe they do and a rational explanation is that
                Mk jumbles things around with similar events and
                brings the synoptic reading into question making it
                appear as though there are different takes on what
                Jesus said. Why Mk does this? We both agree, he is
                writing to a later Church than Luke and Matthew.

                There are all kinds of
                > indications -- in Matthew, the
                > original account -- that the words are formulated
                > and spoken into the present of
                > the Gospel communication event itself.

                This would be true for all the Gospel writers and is a
                far different thing and subject matter than the
                veracity of what Jesus said in any Gospel.

                Jesus is
                > speaking here as 'the Lord of
                > the harvest" (Matt 9:38) who is sending his laborers
                > into his harvest. Speaking
                > for Jesus here is the evangelist himself (a
                > "prophet" -- see Matt 10:41 -- in
                > this sense). It is extremely important to note that
                > in Matthew's text the
                > words spoken by Jesus on this occasion are not
                > followed by a report of the
                > disciples going out on a mission, as a past event,
                > and as we find in Luke and Mark
                > (Mark even has a full-blown "Acts of the Apostles"
                > in 6:13).

                Matthew's non-report is the living proof of the Church
                of his day. In other words, the very Church period in
                which Matthew wrote was living proof of their
                (apostles) actions having been a success or else there
                would be no Church. This rhetorical form was one
                Matthew uses and characterizes his style. I do not see
                how this can place Matthew in priority over either
                Luke or Mark. This argument, though of interest, is
                not productive in attempting to discern chronology of
                the Gospels.

                > This interpretation would imply that the words in
                > Matt 10 do not go all the
                > way back to the historical Jesus,

                Leonard, where is the (1) logic, (2) the argument?

                but they do go
                > back to an extremely early
                > moment in the story of the church -- the time when
                > the twelve disciples ruled
                > over and spoke authoritatively to a renewed Israel.
                > The challenge is issued to
                > Matthew's contemporaries that they are to obey the
                > apostles, and thereby obey
                > Jesus and God (the shaliah concept). Matt 10:40 is
                > very pointed and very
                > important in this respect: "He who receives you
                > receives me and he who receives me
                > receives the one who sent me". That "receiving"
                > means or at least includes
                > primarily "hearing" is suggested by the parallelism
                > of phrases in the negatively
                > formulated Matt 10:14.


                The original is in Lk 9:48; 10:6; followed by Jn
                13:20; 22:26 from which Matthew harvested the text and
                reworked it giving it that Matthean ring and iconic
                imagery.

                > It is also extremely significant that in Luke's
                > Gospel these pointed words
                > are not spoken to the twelve.


                See Lk 9:48; 10:6. Clinging to rigidity of thinking
                that the order of sayings in unmoveable to and in
                specific events is why the Synoptic Problem is yet
                unsolved . The evangelists were more fluid than modern
                researchers allow. They could jumble things up since
                that is licit as long as the original meaning of what
                Jesus said is not lost. No harm, no foul. Voila, 4
                Gospels each appearing in conflict and contradiction
                to very rigid minds.



                By Luke's time, the
                > twelve are no longer the voice
                > of Christ and of God for the Gospel recipients.
                > Instead, "the Lord" (Lk 10:1:
                > not the historical Jesus) speaks directly to the
                > group of the seventy (most
                > likely representing the new missionary movement of
                > Paul and his companions),


                I appreciate your view but wholeheartedly disagree.


                Best regards,
                John N. Lupia, III

                John N. Lupia, III
                Beachwood, New Jersey 08722 USA
                Fax: (732) 349-3910
                http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/
                God Bless America




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              • John Lupia
                To all: Clinging to rigidity of thinking that the order of sayings or that a particular saying is unmovable to and in specific events in the Public Ministry of
                Message 7 of 9 , Jul 3, 2005
                  To all:

                  Clinging to rigidity of thinking that the order of
                  sayings or that a particular saying is unmovable to
                  and in specific events in the Public Ministry of Jesus
                  is why the Synoptic Problem is yet unsolved. This is a
                  naïve journalist approach to texts that are not
                  photojournalistic. The evangelists were more fluid
                  than modern researchers allow. They could jumble
                  things up since that is licit as long as the original
                  meaning of what Jesus said is not lost, twisted,
                  obscured or radically altered giving it an altogether
                  different one. It is because of this fluidity that we
                  have 4 Gospels with varying versions since each wrote
                  to a specific historical situation in the Church
                  addressing their own issues and served as
                  clarifications of what some mistook the text to mean
                  that was written by their predecessor. Unfortunately,
                  to modern eyes and minds each appears in conflict and
                  contradiction to the other and so we have the Synoptic
                  Problem, a misinterpretation of the very nature of the
                  Gospels and total darkness on how they were written.


                  Mk, for example, jumbles things around in the sending
                  out of the twelve with similar events and brings the
                  synoptic reading into question to modern eyes
                  producing the illusion that there are different takes
                  on what Jesus actually said and did.

                  Take for example, Mark 6:7 which like Mk 14:13 sends
                  them out two by two and mirrors what LK 10:1; 24:13
                  says about the seventy-two and the disciples on the
                  road to Emmaus. Why Mk switches things around
                  borrowing from one event that which occurred in
                  another is only answerable in the situation of the
                  Church when Mk wrote.

                  Writing post Lk, Jn, and Mt we find Mk mention the
                  apostles sent out two by two since this was the
                  standard for witnesses as cited in Mt 18:16 and in
                  rooted in ancient Jewish law in Jn 8:17; Apoc 11:3; 2
                  Cor 13:1; 1 Tim 5:19; Heb 10:28; Mt 26:60. Moreover,
                  Mt 18:19 points out the power of two in agreement; and
                  again, the religious gathering of two or more in
                  Jesus’ name assures them of Christ’s presence, in Mt
                  18:20. In Lk 19:29//Mt 21:1//Mk 11:1 Jesus sends out
                  two disciples, a phenomenon of practice attested to in
                  the oldest Gospel of Luke in several places including
                  his Acts 9:38; 19:22.

                  So we need to ask is Mk contradicting Lk and Mt about
                  this event or is he rather attempting to speak to the
                  Church in his own time using a modus operandi in
                  current use and not wanting to cite an original
                  expression Jesus had historically made since there are
                  always those in the crowd who reject their
                  institutions current practices, thinking to themselves
                  that they are wiser or better and out of vanity and
                  egotism would prefer to deviate by justifying their
                  behavior that this is what Jesus originally and
                  historically said and had his apostles do. In other
                  words, Mk appealed to his hearers and readers to abide
                  by current Church standards since Jesus sanctioned it
                  and thus avoided confusing anyone or tempting anyone
                  to deviate from the present course of action. This
                  tells us that the Church had gained wisdom in
                  carefully wording things in each successive Gospel
                  since the earlier Gospels were greatly and widely
                  misinterpreted resulting in factions and dissentions
                  disrupting the harmony and order established in the
                  Church. Herein lies the crux to the so-called Synoptic
                  Problem. This is why we find each successive Gospel
                  restating things to fine tune and focus the meaning
                  and avoid misinterpretation and factions.

                  Another example in this same narrative has Mt 10:10
                  “no sandals” borrow from Lk 10:5. Why? Perhaps Mt was
                  shifting the nuance of meaning Lk 10:5 conveyed that
                  the historical or symbolical time of year the event
                  took place was during the Jewish liturgical calendar
                  of Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement. Lev.
                  16:29,31; 23:27,29; Num. 29:7 "in the seventh month
                  (Tishri), on the tenth day of the month, you shall
                  afflict your souls" From this the tradition on Yom
                  Kippur was to not wear sandals. On Yom Kippur those
                  who were not able to go to Jerusalem spent the entire
                  day in their local synagogues fasting. So the charge
                  to take no staff, sandals, bread or money may have
                  been a reference that Luke and Matthew’s Jewish
                  audience would have understood without any need for a
                  modern interpreter to point it out to them. Having the
                  twelve go preach about Jesus for Yom Kippur has very
                  obvious significance that Jesus is the only one who
                  can take away the sins of human beings.


                  Mark not writing predominantly to Jews in Rome but to
                  Gentiles no longer sees the need to make the obscure
                  references to Yom Kippur but restates things in terms
                  Romans could have grasped while avoiding
                  eccentricities that could lend themselves to
                  misinterpretations and factions.

                  Best regards,
                  John N. Lupia, III

                  John N. Lupia, III
                  Beachwood, New Jersey 08722 USA
                  Fax: (732) 349-3910
                  http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/
                  God Bless America

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